Sunday, June 29, 2014

I Know the Way

John 8:31-32 - So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, "If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."

John 14:6 - Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."

Philippians 2:12-13 - Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.

Dear God, thank You for truth. Thank You for life. Thank You for guiding me on the path of life, whatever that may be. Please prepare Tom to receive the truth and to respond with the truth in kind. Prepare his heart and his mind. How do I know it is time? Because the other person who I was having problems with at the same time Tom got stupid and hateful has finally come around - on his own. And, I have to allow You, God, to guide me with regard to that person. And keep me and my heart safe from harm or hurt or injury. The thing is, the truth can not only set a person free, but it can hurt too. Of course, the hurt that truth sometimes delivers is mostly due to the way the person handles it and not so much the truth itself. That is why I am asking that You prepare Tom to receive the truth and to respond with the truth in kind. I also need to be prepared for truth. And he has to be willing to give the truth. He hurt me. And he spread lies about me. He lied about some things. And I need the truth. In order to truly move on. And it is beyond time for the truth. So I will start this week. And I will not only be working on the letter but I will also be mailing it. And in doing so, it will definitely release me from some of the weight. But then it is up to him to respond in kind in whatever way he sees fit, but it is not something that he can just ignore nor is it something to just shrug off. I guess what happened this past weekend with the unexpected texting was the sign that many people speak of in order to know when it is time to do something or to take the next step. And in a sense that sign would be one that shows the way. God, in that sense, I can now understand how You are the way. Because You sometimes give us signs to help guide us to the next steps we should take. And even though I knew what steps I should take, I didn't know when I should take them. Now I do. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!


Together Forever

Psalm 5:3 - O Lord, in the morning you hear my voice; in the morning I prepare a sacrifice for you and watch.

Psalm 63:1 - O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water. 

Psalm 63:1 (NKJV) - O God, You are my God; early will I seek You.

Philippians 4:13 - I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

Dear God, as long as I face the day with You, then I have someone there for me no matter what. I still have my anxieties and my worries though. Please help me with that. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

I Am Good

Psalm 34:8 - Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!

Psalm 34:8 (ICB) - Examine and see how good the Lord is. Happy is the person who trusts the Lord.

Isaiah 55:8-9 - For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are my ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Dear God, please help me trust that You are working for the good in my life even in times of hardships. Although I would prefer to understand the why of things, just like anyone else. But this past week has given everyone a glimpse of just how much we may never understand. A child left in a hot car all day died. And it seems that it may be possible that the father may have planned it and no one has heard what the mother thinks about everything being said about her husband or her child. A man is in jail possibly missing his child's funeral today. Media are trying to turn the funeral into a media circus. And the man might not get the fair trial he has a right to because too many people have condemned him before knowing ALL the facts. Even the most thorough story released leaves questions to be asked. And even I am trying to believe the best, but am starting to lean toward condemning him based on that thorough story. But where the case sets a slippery slope is knowing that the majority of cases in which a child has been left in a hot car have never resulted in charges or jail, and this case may set precedent. Especially when there are so many self-righteous hypocritical judgmental "I would never forget my child!" parents out there who although they might not have had it happen yet could have it happen and then may face the same judgments as this man has. If the internet search on the man's computer and if it was before he was arrested, then yes, he may deserve to be judged and condemned, but if the internet search happened and if it was after his arrest, then he has been unfairly judged and the people who have already condemned him in their hearts and minds are guilty of sin. Someone actually had the nerve to tell me they hope that I am not a parent just because I posted questions that needed answering before I could pass a judgment and reminders of the tips the media has been sharing ever since the first summer a child died from being forgotten in a hot car. They were mean and ugly when they said that and I said when I do become a parent to an adopted child that my child will learn to love and respect others and to look for the best and never spread hate or judgment before knowing all the facts like that woman did when she said those things to me. And as much as I would hope to be the best parent I could possibly be, I know and my child will know that I will never be perfect. But here is where I do see the good in why You have chosen to allow me to go through the physical problems I have right now, God. It pushes me toward adoption as an avenue and I will be able adopt some older children who have been waiting for their forever families for a long time. I always said since I saw my first animal birth that I was just going to adopt. It looked painful and messy. And I told my mom I never want to go through that. I was probably 8 at the time. At age 10, I had my own My Girl moment with the body changes. And I said it again. I said I was just going to adopt. When the anemia shut down part of my body functioning, I told the doctor, I can just adopt anyway, so why do I need it? I meant what I said and I have never veered from the idea of adoption. But right now people are asking how any good parent can forget their child in a car. If the child is still rear facing and the child falls asleep (no sound and no movement), it is possible. Not every parent has those special mirrors because they inhibit the safety of the vehicle to start with. The media has been suggesting that parents immediately leave their own things in the back seat of the car when they put their child in and put the child's things in the front seat so that if they pull into work and reach for their things but instead grab the child's things, it jogs their memory after what might be a horrendous commute that the child needs to be dropped off first. And because so many of these cases happen every year, car manufacturers are working on a special sensor to install in the cars or the car seats. We have sensors and alerts for everything else in a car, why not one that could prevent more of these deaths from happening? That was also where the lady was rude with me and told me she hoped I wasn't a parent. She claimed I was wanting a car to be a nanny. Um...no. And if I was a parent, I would my car to have all the bells and whistles necessary to make my family safer. Others have said, well, maybe we should still be allowed to have the child in the front seat. No. Most vehicles come standard with front passenger airbags and if a car equipped with those ends up in a front end collision, while the child might not be ejected from the car, the force of both a front and a side airbag could instantly kill a child in the front seat. That is why the labels suggest leaving the child in the back until a certain age, height, or weight. Under the new standards, I would have been in a booster seat until close to the end of high school because I was tiny then. I keep saying that instead of judging the people who do forget, that we need to come up with a solution to prevent more of these cases from happening. But then there are still people who jumped on me for saying that. I suggested that since so many people are attached to their phones that they set reminders in the phones. And I explained that part of the forgetfulness comes from the fact American society as a whole has become too busy for its own good. Which actually is quite sadly true. Then someone else jumped down my case for saying that. She got blocked though because I was tired of her nonsense. But I have experienced the busy-ness of people and I have often suffered because of it, so I know. And the one thing I do have the right to say is stop! You are not going to drag me into being so busy that I cannot function or breathe or have time for myself. My body will crash and burn if I dragged into that mess. I know because at least once a week, I do have a body crash. It shuts down on me mentally, emotionally, or physically. And it is not a pleasant experience. So when it does that, I have to stop and change my plans and let my body have its rest. And maybe that comes with the territory of the autism and the sensory issues, but it is a good things because it means I am learning what I need and what I can and cannot handle and how to deal with it. Thank You God for giving me that wisdom. Thank You for I stilling compassion in me and a desire for the entire truth in all situations. If only others had the same desire for the whole truth, then maybe I would not have to write and send what may be the hardest letter that I will ever have to write and send to someone who needs to recognize and know the truth and then will have to be open to responding in kind. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

For Your Protection

Genesis 28:15 - Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land. For I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.

Psalm 143:8 - Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.

Psalm 143:8 - Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.

Dear God, I cannot fathom how timeless You are while I am constrained by time. I just wish life was more predictable, but with unpredictable people, it isn't. It can be hard to focus on the HERE and the NOW when people are constantly expecting you to live up to thie expectations of your time and your energy. They expect too much sometimes. With me, my body has a way of telling me that I need to stop for some time and rest and just not do. God, I need direction and wisdom. But today I need to just rest with You in the here and now. Thank You for protecting me. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Nothing Surprises Me

Psalm 23:4 - Even though I walk in the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

II Corinthians 4:16-18 - So we do not lose heart. Though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day. For this slight momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

Dear God, bringing all my problems to You right now. You know what they are even when I cannot quite put them into words. Thank You for caring for me. In Jesus' Name, Amen!


You Make Me Sing!

Psalm 95:2 - Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!

Psalm 118:24 - This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Zephaniah 3:17 - The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with lour singing. 

Zephaniah 3:17 - He will rejoice over you with singing.

Dear God, Thank You for the many gifts You have for me each day-the squirrels playing, the birds singing, the colors of the flowers growing, the puffy clouds that make fun shapes, and many others. I am sorry I do not always remember to stop and thank You for each and every little thing, which really, nothing is little when it comes to Your gifts. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Quiet You With My Love by Rebecca St. James (YouTube)

Come to me, all who are weary
And I will give you rest
Come to me, all who are weary
And I will give you rest

Lay your head down on my shoulders
Be still my child, rest a while

And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song
And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song

Come to me, all who are weary
And take my yoke upon you
Come to me, all who are weary
My burden is easy and light

Lay your head down on my shoulders
Be still my child, rest a while

And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song
And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song

I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song
And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my sing, with my song

And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my sing
And I'll quiet you with my love


Hold My Hand

Psalm 62:5-6 - For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him. He only is my rock and salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.

Psalm 62:6 - He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.

Isaiah 41:10 - ...fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Dear God, sometimes I am afraid to trust You because I feel anxious. I have anxiety when it comes to trust for some very easily explainable reasons. Just considering the most recent person who violated my trust. But You tell me that Your presence melts away worries and fears. You tell me that You will not let me fall and that You are taking care of me. God, my family needs financial miracles again. And soon. And I need physical healing. Thank You God for being there. Here is my hand reaching out for Your hand. Don't let go. In Jesus' Name, Amen!


Waiting to Help

Deuteronomy 31:6 - Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.

Psalm 52:8 - But I am like a green olive tree int he house of God. I trust in the steadfast love of God forever and ever.

Ephesians 4:30 - And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 

Ephesians 4:30 (CEV) - Don't make God's Spirit sad. The Spirit makes you sure that someday you will be free from your sins.

Dear God, I want, no, I need Your help. Help as I find the words I need to write so I can finally mail the letter. Help being patient enough to give him appropriate time to respond. Help so that when he does respond (if he respects personhood and humanity enough) I will be able to also see his perspective. It is never easy having to write to someone who was caught in a web of lies like he was. It is never easy for them to respond appropriately either because in order for them to do so, they have to untangle their web. And that is where I will need the greatest help. Help me not forget You are there and to always see the blessings around me. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!


Your Best Protection

Psalm 116:17 - I will offer to you the sacrifice of thanksgiving and call on the name of the Lord.

Philippians 4:4-6 - Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Dear God, thank You for the troubles? That is so hard to do! Let's face it, why would anyone want to thank anyone for the troubles? It defies human logic. But God, right now, I am going to do that. I still have something I have to do in order to take the first step to make amends as best as I can. It is up to the other person beyond that but with any luck he will have enough respect for me to respond. Thank You for bringing me to this point. Just give me the words and the moment I need to write them. And thank You for what. You are doing in spite of the troubles and maybe even because of the torubles. No, one cannot both complain about and thank You for the troubles. Not technically anyway. It is hard to do. Thank You God for a good object lesson today that helps defy human logic and gives a glimpse into Your logic. In Jesus' Name, Amen!


Saturday, June 21, 2014

I Am Timeless

Numbers 6:24-26 - The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up his countenance (face) upon you and give you peace. 

Micah 7:7 - But as for me, I will look to the Lord, I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me. 

Revelation 1:8 - "I am the Alpha and the Omega," says the Lord God, "who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty." 

Dear God, how great and mighty it must be for You to be timeless and not limited by the constraints of time! How wonderful it must be. Help me to just appreciate the time I do have and to come closer to You in that time. What an honor that You would spend time with me. I wish I had more friends willing to do that too. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Friday, June 20, 2014

You Can Find Me

Psalm 8:1-4 - O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory above the heavens. Out of the mouth of babes and infants, you have established strength because of your does, to still the enemy and the avenger. When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?

Psalm 19:1-2 - The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge.

Jeremiah 29:13 -14 - You will seek me and find me. When you seek me with all your heart, I will be found by you, declares the Lord, and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have driven you, declares the Lord, and I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile.

I Corinthians 6:19-20 - Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

Dear God, help me to see and hear You more in the world around me. And help me to teach others to be able to do the same. You are in the cool, gentle breeze on a hot, summer day. You are in the bird singing his little heart away. You are in the coo of a newborn baby's play. You are in the sunset that You paint at the end of the day. Thank You. In Jesus's Name, Amen!

God by Rebecca St. James (YouTube) 

He made the night, He made the day
Spread the earth upon the waters, made the Heavens and the rain
Look at the sky, see its design
The very same creator, He's the one who gave us life

And what is man that He's mindful of us? 
We're merely clay in His hands
And what am I that He loves me so much, He would die
You know, all I can say is

It's God, truly God
Can you see, can you hear
Can you touch, can you feel
It's God, truly God
I can't explain any other way 'cause it's God

Inside us all there is a void
All mankind is searching for the one who fills the soul
In Him there's hope, in Him there's life
The world cries for a Savior that's right before their eyes

And what is man that He takes us in
As His children to be His own
And what are we that He wants to be our Father
All that I can is

It's God, truly God
Can you see, can you hear
Can you touch, can you feel
It's God, truly God
I can't explain any other way 'cause it's God

It's God, truly God
Can you see, can you hear
Can you touch, can you feel
It's God, truly God
I can't explain any other way 'cause it's God

Lord I praise You for Your endless love
Your boundless grace, I stand here amazed

What is man that He's mindful of us?
What am I that He loves me so much?
What is man that He takes us in?
What are we that He wants to be, God

God, truly God
Can you see, can you hear it
Can you touch, can you feel it
And it's God, truly God
I can't explain any other way 'cause

It's God, truly God
It's God, truly God
It's God, truly God
I can't explain any other way 'cause it's God

Monday, June 16, 2014

Shout for Joy!

Joshua 1:5 - No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life. Just as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you or forsake you.

Psalm 5:11 - But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them ever sing for joy, and spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may exult in you.

Ephesians 3:20-21 - Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

Jude 24-25 - Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.

Dear God, help me to always be able to sing, shout and dance for joy! Help me always remember that You are always there even in times when I do not feel Your presence, like in times of illness or times of worry about financial provisions. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

A Perfect Plan

Proverbs 16:9 - The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.

Jeremiah 29:11 - For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for wholeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Ephesians 1:3-6 - Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love, he predestined us for adoption through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.

Ephesians 1:13-14 - In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, tot he praise of his glory. 

Dear God, help me relax and enjoy the walk with You today and to not get too caught up in what the future may hold. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Laughing at Troubles

Proverbs 17:22 - A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

Proverbs 31:25 - Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.

Proverbs 31:25 - She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.

Matthew 1:23 - "Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel" (which means, God with us).

Matthew 11:28-30 - "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will fond rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." 

Dear God, teach me how to laugh at my troubles, to find joy in the midst of them. Help me to never lose the joy You give me even when troubles do exist. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Quiet You With My Love by Rebecca St. James (YouTube)

Come to me, all who are weary
And I will give you rest
Come to me, all who are weary
And I will give you rest

Lay your head down on my shoulders
Be still my child, rest a while

And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song
And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song

Come to me, all who are weary
And take my yoke upon you
Come to me, all who are weary
My burden is easy and light 

Lay your head down on my shoulders
Be still my child, rest a while

And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song
And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song

I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song
And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song

And I'll quiet you with my love
Rejoice over you with my song, with my song
And I'll quiet you with my love

Come to Me by Jamie-Grace (YouTube)

I had a dream I was standin' on the shore
Two feet planted in the sand
Soakin' up Your glory yeah
Saw You walkin' from a distance
Without a hint of resistance 
Had Your arms open
And a warmth in Your eyes
You took my hand and You whispered

Come to me when
You're weary and
I'll give you hope when you're hurting
I'll give you rest from your burden
Come to me when
You're weary and
I'll give you hope when you're hurting
I'll give you rest from your burden now

I woke up to the weight of the world
Right back into reality
And all that's goin' wrong
Cuz in the midst of this chaotic life
I try to find peace of mind
But You've been there all along
And even now I hear You whisper

Come to me when
You're weary and
I'll give you hope when you're hurting
I'll give you rest from your burden
Come to me when
You're weary and
I'll give you hope when you're hurting
I'll give you rest from your burden

I feel the weight, I feel the weight is slowly liftin'
As you close the distance
And I know, it's gonna be okay when I hear you say
Come to me when
You're weary and
I'll give you hope when you're hurting
Oo I'm gonna carry your burden
Come to me when
You're weary and
I'll give you hope when you're hurting
I'll give you rest from your burden now

The weight is lifted now

Your Special Path

Micah 6:8 - He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

Micah 6:8 (ICB) - The Lord has told you what is good. He has told you what he wants from you: Do what is right to other people. Love being kind to others. And live humbly, trusting your God.

Ephesians 2:10 - For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

Dear God, I understand that each person has his or her path in life. This is why I do not understand why Tom's church did what they did to me. They tried to change the path You had me on. And in doing that, they hurt me more than anyone ever could. When Tom did what he did, he knew he was wrong to do so. Yet he still did it. He knew he should have talked to me. Yet he didn't. Yet this is where things get weird, You, God, have taught me more about Your grace and Your love and Your mercy and Your kindness and Your forgiveness these past few months more so than Tom and most definitely more so than his church ever did. It turns that Your grace and love and mercy and kindness and forgiveness are more real and more alive than what even they could ever comprehend themselves and I have experienced it firsthand and now it is spilling over and You are asking me to share it. With Tom and with others. But You see. I have been through a lot and it was recommended that I write to Tom's church. But I think the reason I haven't printed that letter yet and sent it is because it isn't his church that I need to come to terms with yet. It is Tom. And then if he accepts, them it is his church. So help me God. Help me to write the words I need to say to him, the truth he needs to hear, maybe even for the first time. Or maybe the thousandth time as old and ancient as he is in terms of life experience because he is not really old and ancient. Anyway, God, each person does have his or her own path, and as it turns out, his church was wrong to interfere with Your work in my life and it was wrong to exclude me the way it did. Maybe it would have been different had they not tried to change who I am, who You created me to be. And I think even Ginny knew that which is why she told me some things that they would not be happy to know she told me. Because Ginny knew I needed to come into my own person and that the other two on that "team" were damaging me. They may not have intended to inflict damage, but they were actually very divisive which is what caused the damage. And until they address the root of the problem, they will never be able to grow as a church that is good for the people. They will only continue to fall away from You. I mean, even other people are struggling with that church and for a variety of reasons. Maybe it is time for them to stop and listen. Because they are falling apart from the inside out. God, thank You for the path. You have me on. I may long, it may be rough, and it may sometimes seem like it is a mystery to me, but thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen! 

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Eyes to See and Ears to Hear

Psalm 130:5-6 - I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope; my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning.

Isaiah 6:1-3 - In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and wih two he flew. And one called to another and said: "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!" 

II Corinthians 4:18 - ...as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the nights that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

Dear God, help me to seek You more so that my eyes can see You and my ears can hear You. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

More Than the Watchmen by Rebecca St. James 

Out of the depths of my despair
Oh I cry Father hear my voice
Open Your ears to hear my mercy cry

And if you kept a book of sin
Oh Father, who'd be standing?
But in Your goodness there is mercy and forgiveness

Chorus:
More than the watchmen wait for morning
My soul it waits for You
More than the watchmen wait for morning

More than the watchmen wait for morning
My soul it waits for You
More than the watchmen wait for morning

Out of the depths of my despair
Oh I cry Father hear my voice
Open Yoru ears to hear my mercy cry

And if You kept a book of sin
Oh Father, who'd be standing?
But in Your goodness there is mercy and forgiveness

Chorus

Give Me Your Eyes by Brandon Heath (YouTube)

Looked down from a broken sky
Traced out by the city lights
My world from a mile high
Best seat in the house tonight
Touched down on the cold black top
Hold on for the sudden stop
Breathe in the familiar shock
Of confusion
And chaos

All those people goin' somewhere 
Why have I never cared?

Give me Your eyes for just one second
Give me Your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me Your love for humanity
Give me Your arms for the broken-hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach
Give me Your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me Your eyes so I can see
Yeah
Yeah
Yeah
Yeah

Step out on a busy street 
See a girl and our eyes meet
Does her best to smile at me
To hide what's underneath
There's a man just to her right
Black suit and a bright red tie
Too ashamed to tell his wife
He's out of work, he's buyin' time

All those people goin' somewhere
Why have I never cared?

Give me Your eyes for just one second
Give me Your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me Your love for humanity
Give me Your arms for the broken-hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach
Give me Your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me Your eyes so I can see
Yeah
Yeah
Yeah
Yeah

I've been there a million times
A couple of million eyes
Just move and pass me by
I swear I never thought that I was wrong
Well I want a second glance
So give me a second chance
To see the way You've seen the people all along

Give me Your eyes for just one second
Give me Your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me Your love for humanity
Give me Your arms for the broken-hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach
Give me Your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me Your eyes so I can see

Give me Your eyes (Give me Your eyes for just one second)
Lord, give me Your eyes (Give me Your eyes so I can see)
Everything (Everything that I keep missing)
That I keep missing
Give me Your heart (Give me Your arms for the broken-hearted)
For the broken-hearted (The ones that are far beyond my reach)
Give me Your heart (Give me Your heart for the ones forgotten)
Lord, give me Your eyes (Give me Your eyes so I can see)
Yeah
Yeah
Yeah
Yeah

Yeah
Yeah
Yeah
Yeah


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Puzzle Pieces (Online Debut)

Puzzle Pieces 
By Susan Elizabeth Spann

Life is a puzzle.
A giant puzzle.
We see the picture on the box.
We put each piece in place.
Sometimes it is painstaking.
But when it is complete, we go ooh and aah.
We completed a masterpiece.
We are proud.
Sometimes we take it apart and do it again later.
Other times, we glue it together so we can always admire it.

Life is a puzzle.
And we are the pieces.
When you put the puzzle together, you need every piece.
If even one piece is missing, you go crazy looking for it.
Every piece is vital, crucial, necessary.
Without every piece the puzzle is incomplete.

Each person is a piece in the giant puzzle of life.
Each person is uniquely designed to fit with everyone else.
No one piece is more or less important than another.
That is how life is though.
We are all a part of the puzzle.
The puzzle of life.

Monday, June 9, 2014

You Are My Chosen One

Isaiah 61:10 - is ill greatly rejoice in the Lord; my soul shall exult in my God, for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation; he has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress, and a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

Jeremiah 31:3 - Thus says the Lord: "The people who survived the sword found grace in the wilderness; when Israel sought for rest, the Lord appeared to him from far away. I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you."

I Peter 2:9 - But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.

I Peter 2:9 (NLT) - But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God's very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God.

Dear God, thank You for unending love. Help me show others the same unending love You have for me. Even Tom. And in doing that, help him remember how he is supposed to act if he truly is a Christian. With forgiveness, love, and compassion. He used to say the reason he forgave so easily is because he was forgiven much. But in the one moment when he needed to be the most forgiving, he was not even a Christian. He misinterpreted a lot of things and instead of listening to me to find out the truth, he spread lies that were not true. Instead of working through conflict, he violated Your word. And the leadership at his church violated their stupid discriminating and abusive document that they wanted me to sign agreeing to allow them to keep abusing me. Sadly, Tom abused me when he did those things. And according to Your word, Tom is not a Christian. Nor are most of the leaders at that church. They did not evidence You when they abused me. Yet You are asking me to reach out in grace. To Tom. And to give him a chance to hopefully prove me wrong in accordance with Your word. Soften his heart if You really want me to do this, God. Open his heart and his mind and prepare him for the truth. The truth hurts, and he will not like that he will learn that he was an idiot for ignoring it and for not listening to me so he would know the truth. He assumed things that were not true. For one thing, it was never him that the post was about, but someone else. The guy I was crushing on. But had Tom only listened he would have known. Now grant I was also upset with Tom that day, but the upset with him was directed at him. It was not posted. But he assumed the post was about him. And he never said he was upset about the post or I could have told him when he had called angry about me being frustrated with him or even when he called if he had called again as he had promised. Tom did a lot of things that contributed to the conflict - he assumed things that were not accurate. Unfortunately, his actions have helped me understand why people say, "You know what happens when you ASSume things?" Yeah. Tom certainly did that. And all it would have taken was a conversation. Now I know what You mean when You say the truth will set you free. Telling the truth in the letter will hopefully not only set me free, but it will hopefully open Tom's eyes and maybe he will come to his senses and go back with the truth to those hateful little men at his church. If nothing else, maybe he will at least reach out to me and evidence You in his life, if You are in his life. Oh, and God, please, right now, I need healing. And financial provision. $3000 for hearing aids. Insurance does not seem to think adults need to be able to hear. Without being able to hear, I cannot work. Oh, and please, if You do not mind, make that day camp program that I am supposed to go to once a week and help with once a week go better. It was boring and stressful that one day I went so far. It turns out that boredom is something else that can add stress to my life! Especially when it is supposed to be something full of scheduled activities. Who knew that boredom could create stress? And please heal me from the blackberry juice overload. Mom sure got a laugh from that one. But I am sure uncomfortable from it. As I told her, "I went from one extreme to the other!" My stomach needs a balance. And I am hoping it is not another stomach bug that might end up with me having another IV. God, I cannot mention these two by name, but I have a couple of friends needing Your comfort right now. One just had to make the decision about a very old cat. And I know the pain she is going through as I did that about 8 years ago with an 18-year-old cat myself. May Peaches rest in peace. And I can hardly believe Katie is almost 8! And I may have to make that decision again soon with my deaf dog, Molly Jean, who is starting to show signs of aging. At almost 15, she is getting less able to fetch the ball. The second friend of mine may have divorce in the near future and has two young ones, one of which has autism. And I know that titles hard. Not that I have been married, but I saw my own father walk out on my family. He could no longer handle having what he considered to be a broken child or a broken wife. Of course, I think he got bitten back for that one, but I don't really care. God, give me wisdom and the words I need to write that letter to Tom. It looks like at this point, the direction You are steering me will be with Tom, and not the church. Although he will get the one for them as well, but will likely have instructions to only share it with them after he responds to me directly either by a meeting or a phone call or a letter or an e-mail or Facebook (which would require the biggest act of faith in You on his part, but would also give him the most freedom at the starting point). Prepare him for the truth. I now the reality stick hurts, but Rafiki means well when he bonks you upside the head with it. (Lion King.) Thank You God for clearer direction. And thank You for choosing and for loving me. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Bubbling Joy

John 3:8 - The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.

John 3:8 (CEV) - Only God's Spirit gives new life. The Spirit is like the wind that blows wherever it wants to. You can hear the wind, but you don't know where it comes from or where it is going. 

Galatians 5:22-23 - But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control: against such things there is no law.

Dear God, I want the overflowing kind of peace, love and joy that You give through Your Spirit. Let that cause others to draw closer wanting to have it spill over them as well. Thank You! In Jesus' Name, Amen!

A Day that Is Just Right

Luke 1:79 - ...to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.

I Corinthians 10:9-10 - We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents, nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer.

I Corinthians 10:10 (ICB) - And do not complain as some of them did.

Dear God, show me how the wrongs can be turned into good things. That is what I want. As some of my friends have some really serious hurts right now. Thank You for making bad things good. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Never Alone

Isaiah 12:2 - "Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and will not be afraid; for the Lord God is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation."

Romans 8:6 - To set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.

Romans 8:6 (ICB) - If a person's thinking is controlled by his sinful self, then there is death. But if his thinking is controlled by the Spirit, then there is life and peace.

Dear God, please fill my mind with peace and help me not be knocked down by that mean old devil. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Take a Break with Me

Psalm 62:5 - For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.

Psalm 62:5 - Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him.

I Thessalonians 5:17 - ...pray without ceasing,...

Dear God, please help me rest. Not only physically, but also spiritually. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Love Takes Care of It All

I Peter 4:8 - Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.

I Peter 4:8 - Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.

I John 4:18 - There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.

Revelation 2:4 - But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. 

Dear God, today You are teaching me that the reason Tom did what he did to hurt me and the reason he lied is because he was and is afraid. Afraid of the truth and lacking in confidence on Your love and forgiveness. Does that excuse what he did? No. But does it mean that he needs to work through some things? Yes. And does it mean I need to extend a hand of grace? Yes. And does it mean he and I should talk? Yes. Things might not ever be the same again, but it is what I need to offer to him to evidence my own growth in You, God. So falling into Your arms of love right now, I give You my fears, my anxieties, and my qualms, and I will do as You say in terms of writing that letter that will do just what I have said I need to do. Soften his heart, God. Thank You for Your love and Your forgiveness. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

I Did It All for You

Psalm 100:4 - Enetr his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!

Matthew 28:18 - And Jesus came and said to the them, "All authority in heaven and earth has been given to me."

Dear God, help me always remember what You did for me and to always be willing to learn from it. Help me to not harden my heart and my mind from You or Your truths. Help me never harden my heart like Tom did or like many of the republicans on Alabama that I know or have seen saying nasty things about the president or the poor have done. Always keep my heart and my mind moldable. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Saturday, June 7, 2014

I Am Enough!

Luke 12:22-31 - And he said to his disciples, "Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? I then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest? Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass, which is alive in the field today, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith! And do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried. For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. Instead, seek his kingdom, and these things will be added to you."

Luke 12:31 - But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.

John 16:33 - "I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world."

Dear God, I being You my worries today. I am worried because November is still so far away and there are still people who threaten to take away my insurance and my healthcare over there hatred for the president, and they claim to be Christians. Well, I do not need that. My family does not need that. We do not need DeMarco or someone else coming in and hurting us like that. For the first time in my life, I have REAL insurance that is actually doing what insurance is supposed to do and saving my family money on healthcare that I need. For the first time in a long time, it might be possible that my family might be able to pay off some debts so that we can move toward saving what we are able to in order to get hearing aids for me, make long overdue home repairs, and maybe even go on a long overdue vacation. And that is awesome. Second, people keep misusing the scripture in defense of trying to hurt people who need SNAP to help them buy food. They keep saying Jesus said the words or they keep misquoting it by saying that a person who does not work should not eat or worse they keep adding to it citing some quote about teaching a man to fish which is not even in the Bible! But what Your word say is if a man is not willing to work, he should not eat. Big difference there. Many SNAP recipients are elderly (too old to work), disabled (cannot mentally or physically handle work), veterans (already worked for this country), working poor (working but just cannot make ends meet because their jobs are not paying the living wage that minimum wage was designed to be), or active duty military families (already working the job the veterans did by serving the country). That being said, there might be a few individuals on SNAP who are just unwilling to work, but under all due circumstances, I highly doubt that. Now on to the next attack being made: the entitlement mentality. Some doctor from Stanford has decided that being poor and on SNAP means someone is obese and should not be able to buy soda or snacks. He is apparently very close-minded and has not actually made observations that are connected to reality. You see, I have evidence that the opposite is true as well. Here in Alabama, there are more fat rich people than there are poor fat people. How do I know? Because all I have to is go up the road a but and walk into Wal-mart. Obesity ranks high in Alabama, and being rich or poor is not a factor. What factors in for the state of Alabama is all the fried junk people eat as well as all the products containing high fructose corn syrup. Instead of attacking the poor like that doctor from Stanford did and instead of making a discriminatory restriction on them buying it every now and then, what needs to happen is a lowering of costs for healthy foods, a removal of tax on all groceries in all 50 states, and then a special tax levied on products containing high fructose corn syrup which has already been proposed as a measure to fight back against obesity. And yes, if that tax was imposed, people would be surprised to learn what all contains that ingredient that is making everyone, rich and poor, fat. Everything from the obvious soda, to salad dressing to BBQ sauce to some "juices," and even some canned fruit?! You see, I have seen things and I have observed things, and I know for a fact that a lot more than wealth and types of food or drink plays into obesity. Genetics, thyroid problems, metabolism issues, hormones, and even someone being depressed. Instead of targeting the poor, which is what discrimination does, target the ingredient that has been proven time and again to be the culprit. If a ban or restriction is good enough for one set of people, then it is good enough for 100% of the population. Better yet, why don't people learn how to just check themselves before judging others that they do not know? And some people are claiming they see the abuses, yet if they see it happening, then why they aren't reporting it? They are just as culpable as the abuser if they see it but fail to report it. Frankly, I am the person that I do not care what a person buys or what is in their shopping cart and I do not care how they pay for it because it is not my business to know any of that. How does a poor person have a Mercedes or a BMW? Maybe their clunker is the shop for the thousandth time and the rental place gave them that car. Or maybe a friend or family member loaned it to them. Who does a poor person have an iPhone or an iPad or an iPod? Maybe they got it as a gift or maybe they got it on sale (iPhones can be acquired for as little as $39 or $49 at Wal-mart on that pay as you go phone thing and for $99 with a 2-year agreement). How do they have Coach handbags? Thrift store, gift, yard sale? But they wear Nike! Gift, yard sale, thrift store, consignment shop? People are judging what they see, but they do not have the full story. They assume that all people of certain races are poor. Oh look, a black woman with three young ones just got a cart full of groceries using a card and just got into an expensive car outside of Wal-mart looking like luxury! For all we know she is married to a doctor or lawyer, she comes from a rich household, and that card she used was a standard VISA or MasterCard. Oh look, a white person just bought a cart full of stuff and got into a Mercedes after using a card! She was wearing a nice manicure and pedicure and nice clothing! She may be the wife of a doctor or prominent lawyer and her card was also a VISA or MasterCard! I do not know how many states still have actual food stamps, but I do know that most have switched to EBT cards in order to remove the stigmas and save time at the stores. And we cannot judge based on appearances. The last time I judged on appearances, I ended up with a movie I could not watch because there were too many curse words on it. Lesson learned. Now I am just judging whether clothing is appropriate to wear in public. And many things out there are not. And I am baffled as to why someone would buy something already destroyed. One last thought. The abbuse of the second amendment to justify guns in the hands of the general populace. The amendment starts by saying a well-regulated militia. It ends with the right to bear arms. Well-regulated means organized. A militia is an organized group of people with a single purpose in mind. And arms is weaponry, not to necessarily mean guns. The general populace is not organized. Therefore, the general populace is not supposed to bear arms. The arms they were writing about at the time the amendment was written were not high powered multi-shot guns. They were muskets that had to be reloaded a lot. Guns today are designed to kill. People with guns kill. Therefore, guns kill. I said my reasoning was due to autism. Someone corrected me and said it was due to being logical. Either way. Anyway God, I just wanted to lay out some thoughts that have troubled me and even angered me this week. And maybe if someone happens on these thoughts, they may even learn something important. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!


Friday, June 6, 2014

You Will Find Me

Psalm 19:1-2 - The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge.

Psalm 105:4 - Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually!

Isaiah 60:2 - For behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the Lord will arise upon you, and his glory will be seen upon you.

Dear God, help me always to see You in the creation around me. I already do, but help me to always see You there. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Seeking Perfection

Exodus 20:3 - You shall have no other gods before me.

Psalm 37:4 - Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Dear God, no other gods. Money is a god for some people. I think it is a god for most republicans. They have it. Others don't. Because money has become their god, they treat those who don't like they are not even people but objects. That is what they do when they threaten to take healthcare from people or when they threaten to discriminate against people who receive SNAP by trying to dictate what they can and cannot eat or drink when the real culprit is one ingredient: high fructose corn syrup, and the reality is that there are more fat rich people than there are poor fat people. And in the south, it is more of a problem of the obsession with fried foods. But this belittling of the poor and judgment of the poor whether it comes to trying to dictate what they can and cannot buy because they assume there is "rampant" fraud - I am pretty sure that less than one percent fraud is nowhere near rampant because rampant means widespread and there is more fraud in congress than in SNAP or Social Security combined! - or whether it is trying to deny healthcare to people just because they are poor (congress keeps trying to repeal the ACA or Bentley is blocking Medicaid expansion which is forcing hospitals in rural communities to shut down in Alabama because they can no longer handle the financial burden of the uninsured poor) has become their god. Duck Dynasty guy was telling the republicans to get more godly, and now I understand what he means. The anti-abortion and anti-homosexuality fixation they have developed alongside the anti-poor and hate the president mentality they have has become their god. Money has become their god. They get paid $174,000 per year and yet they do nothing for the people anymore. They even shut down the government because of their sick obsession with trying to keep people from gaining access to affordable healthcare. They have it, so why shouldn't everyone else? Not every job provides insurance. And insurance used to illegally discriminate against people. Now they want government to discriminate against people who receive SNAP by dictating what they can and cannot buy when there are already restrictions in place. Discrimination - denying a group of people something others can have for some reason. Insurance used to deny people with pre-exciting conditions. Many places still discriminate against the disabled. Many of the pre-existing conditions can be disabling. Places used to discriminate against people of color and some places still do. If banning the purchase of soda is good enough for people who get SNAP, then they must ban purchase of soda for ALL of the people, or else it is called discrimination. Instead of a ban on purchasing it with SNAP, they need to ban HFCS which has banned in other countries already, is no longer needed, and is more directly tied to obesity and diabetes than anything else. Don't believe me? Do some research about when it became the main ingredient in sodas and when fast food restaurants began showing up on every corner. You also will find that that is around the time girls entered puberty earlier and earlier. Another thing to consider is that the cost of healthy foods needs to be brought down in price and grocery tax needs to be repealed in all states with the exception of the proposal to tax products containing HFCS. The ban of HFCS or the special grocery tax on products containing HFCS will go further and be more effective than dictating what SNAP recipients can and cannot buy which then has to be a sweeping restriction on all of the people to prevent illegal discrimination. Look, God, I know You already know these things, but Bentley and DeMarco and that Palmer guy they said will be in some runoff do not seem to get it. Another god? Guns. They are obsessed with guns to the extent that some idiot actually tried to carry his (more like flaunt it) into a church that was serving as a polling place. All the polling places are subject to federal guidelines which prohibit guns or any other weapon. The church does and maintains business on a daily basis and I believe offers childcare and it is private property. The man was disrespectful and arrogant. Now he is threatening to do it again, which I hope police will just take action at that point because if he wants to break the state law and the local law, then he should have to deal with the consequences. But they are so obsessed, I have seen people claim that it is a "God-given right." When asked to point to where it says it is his God-given right in the Bible, he said it isn't in the Bible. So I said, well then it isn't your God-given right; it is a man-made right, and not even one intended for the general populace. But it is my God-given right to live and have food and healthcare if I am sick and to be treated with respect with dignity. After considering a lot of things from the past few days, I now know why Christians should not be involved in government. As congressmen or senators though. One of them is out on the radio saying if he wins, he will impose his religion and his beliefs on everyone. Well, that is a violation of the First Amendment. Little wonder why America is so messed up right now. They lost focus and their moral compass has shifted too far into legalism. And that is what the Pharisees did. When a pope who exemplifies what Jesus did while on earth actually commends the president for his efforts to help the poor in regards to access to food and healthcare, you know he must doing something right. When the pope actually criticizes what congress is doing, you know they are doing something wrong. I am not even catholic, but even I like what the pope is doing! By the way, if Bentley or DeMarco happen on this, I do not care how good a Christian you claim to be but if you block access or take away access to healthcare from someone because you hate the president so much, then you are not a Christian because a true Christian would not do that. Matthew 25:31-46 and Romans 13:1-7 guys. As long you disrespect the president, you disrespect God. And I do not support anyone who disrespects the president of the country my mother and my ancestors served. Furthermore, DeMarco, if you hate the president so much and have no intention of actually working with the president who will basically be your boss in D.C., then why are you even bothering to run? If I went to apply for a job with your attitude, I would not be hired. Period. God, five more months until November. Give me peace and comfort and most of all wisdom. I am now finally gaining understanding of what some of those lessons I have been taught actually mean! Now if Tom would just exemplify You and seek restoration with me like You say he is supposed to have done to start with. Sigh. God, thank. You for lessons learned and revelations of Yourself. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Worth Celebrating

Isaiah 26:3 - O Lord our God, other lords besides you have ruled over us, but your name alone we bring to remembrance.

Philippians 4:13 - I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

James 1:2-3 - Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know I the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.

Dear God, it is definitely a challenge to consider problems as pure joy. When on the midst of trouble, there is no joy most of the time because of anxiety or frustration or even anger or sadness. Right now, I am troubled. Bentley won and DeMarco won in the primaries. The bright spot is come November, the general election will be here. Then we can make sure the hypocrites do not win. When Bentley first ran, he said he hated the president and that because of that he was going to block the Medicaid expansion for those who need it and yet he claimed to be a Christian. Why would someone who is a Christian hate the president so much that he would take it out on the least of these? Unless he is not a Chrsitian. DeMarco is now doing the same thing. He says he is a good Christian, goes to church, hates the president, and will do everything he can to repeal the ACA. He will not listen to the fact that many of his potential constituents have been positively impacted by the ACA. Instead, all he cares about is disrespecting the president and taking his hate for m out on the least of these. This has to be stopped! God, I am so sorry that these people are doing this and acting against Your word. I know You will intervene somehow. But I am worried and not really feeling like celebrating right now. Please help me. Thank You. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Monday, June 2, 2014

When You Are Afraid...

II Thessalonians 3:16 - Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all.

I John 4:18 - There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. 

I John 4:20 - if anyone says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen.

Dear God, please cast put the fear today. As I read further, I also learned that those who hate their fellow brothers OR SISTER do not love You. I wish Tom would evidence Your love, but he did lie and he ended up doing things that were very hateful. The thing is, though, I do not hate him. I just need him to come to a peace making with me. Extending further though, that verse would also indicate that Mathis and DeMarco are liars because they say they are Christians yet they hate the president so much that they want to take healthcare from the poor and the disabled! If they are Christians, then they should not hate anyone and they should respect the president (Romans 13) and they should do everything they can to strengthen the ACA, not destroy it. Mathis even claims he want to protect the constitutional freedoms, yet if that were true, why did he block people with opposing viewpoints regarding the ACA? He violated my First Amendment right to express an opinion just because it was different than his. And he did not like being exposed for lack of ethics. God, today, I am not at peace because of the stupid primaries. Alabama is rigged this time. Democrats in my district only have one race - governor. Of course, anyone is better than Bentley. Bentley is just a hateful, old, white racist and sexist pig who claims to be such a good Christian that when he ran, he actually stated that he hated the president so much that he was going to block the Medicaid and do everything he could to prevent the ACA from working in Alabama. Well, he failed. The ACA IS working in Alabama. When I read Vigneulle's statements, he was also stretching things. Okay, he has three children and a wife. He has a family plan. And he states that his plan went from $680 to $1500 per month. If all five members of his family are on the plan, then his plan is $300 per person per month. If only four of them are on it, then he is only paying $375 per person per month. Guess what? That is actually thie CORRECT rate! Why? Because I am an individual and I pay $320.75 per month or $352.75 per month if you add the separate dental plan I now get to have. And that is a gold tier plan. Vigneulle did not tell the entire truth in his statement. To have truth in his statement, he would need to state how many people are on his plan and what level the plan is. But from what it sounds, he may have a similar plan to what I have if it costs that much and he pays less per person than I do as an individual! This is the kind of thing that irks me about these republicans and tea party people though. They either ignore the truth, gloss over the truth, or do not tell the full truth. They do not understand how insurance works now is how insurance should have always been working. His family plan before, if all five of a members were on it, only cost him $139.69 per month per person, and if only four were on it, it only cost him $174.50 per month per person. Guess what? Cry me a river! I was paying $298 per month for an 80/20 plan that was JUNK! And I knew it was junk long before the term came into existence when insurance companies scrapped those junk plans! I knew it was junk when an ENT told me after my fourth surgery in 12 months and after I began allergy shots and only needed minor care that I should consider finding a catastrophic plan that would cost less because essentially that is what my insurance had become. Yep. My rates kept going up and my coverage kept decreasing! And that was before the ACA. Now people foolishly believe their rates went up and coverage decreased, when in reality, their coverage increased because now they have ten benefits that are not subject to out of pocket costs or deductibles! That is a lot of potentially FREE care coming from those premiums now. Of course, rates are going to go up! When insurance pays more out per person in terms of what they cover, the rates do go up. And because they can no longer charge more for a person who is sick (or disabled - Americans with Disabilities Act is being enforced), each person is rated the same. Brooks, I do not even want to talk about him, using a gun to demonstrate how he feels about the ACA? What is to say he would not turn it on the president himself? I am starting to run out of people here, God. They all have their downsides. And Shattuck? He may be a flip flopper. Give me wisdom today though. I am going into these elections today, and now I know what it means to have to choose the least of the evils. But God, if none of them are going to be for me, or for the least of these, then we are doomed! As a nation, as a state, and as a district. God, please hurry back. I cannot tolerate this level of hate being directed at me or my fellow especial needs families who are also in lower income brackets. My heart aches today and I not only seek Your wisdom, but I plead with You for You to intervene and weed out the worst of the candidates. I have no doubt there will end up being at least run off election either. But even still, weed them out God. Come November, that is where the true power will take place. Until then, my world has been shaken and stirred and anxieties have returned. Anxieties I should not have to face as an American or as an Alabamian. Please, please, fill me with Your peace, God. Calm my anxious spirit and my anxious heart. I do not hate anyone and I never will. I hate what they do though. Thank You for listening to me. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

You Are My Child

Psalm 46:10 - "Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!"

I John 3:2 - Beloved, we are God's children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.

Dear God, in today's lesson, You said do not be like the Pharisees who made up their own rules and to just relax in Your peace. So basically Pharisees were legalists? And republicans and especially that extremist tea party are like Pharisees? They sure do make up a lot of rules that You did NOT make. They demand on having the right to carry guns while also being stupid and self-entitled by trying to take healthcare from those who are less fortunate. Well, frankly, if they get to keep their guns, then I get to keep my healthcare and my insurance so that when one them stupidly shoots off their gun, I have medical treatment that I will not lose my home over. Of course, then they would be sitting in jail for life for shooting me and almost killing me and they would be responsible for making sure those hospital bills are paid because it was their fault to start with and it would not be my fault if out of their hate for the president I lost my insurance after eight years of fighting to be able to have better insurance because I already knew my old plan was junk even before the media started calling those plans junk. I was just never allowed to get new and more comprehensive insurance or even dental insurance until the ACA came along because before the ACA came along, insurance companies were allowed to violate the ADA and discriminate against people with disabilities. Well, God, I know what I have to do tomorrow regarding the primaries, and my mom might do the same thing. I have prayed through Matthew 25 and Romans 13 and some of the other passages I have journeyed through, and I feel at peace with my decision. Just move through the hearts and minds of other evangelical Christians in the district and give them the wisdom and the insight to make the right decision in the best interest of the least of these as well. Thank You for Your peace. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Working Through Matthew 25:31-46 Entering the Primaries

Where do the candidates stand in relation to the treatment of the least of these?

Focal question:

Does this candidate have the best interest of the sick in mind?

Alabama Congressional District 6

Scott Beason - Threatens to repeal the Affordable Care Act. No. Also disrespects the president. Violation of Romans 13:1-7. 

Will Brooke - Used guns in an ad to show his opinion of the Affordable Care Act. No.Disrespect for the president in violation of Romans 13:1-7. Wants to oppose carbon rules. Great. So he wants to take healthcare from the sick and contribute to the pollution that makes people sick. 

Paul DeMarco - Claims to be a good Christian. States that he will fight against the president. Yet he is running for congress, a job which involves working WITH the president. Threatens to repeal the Affordable Care Act. No. And his lack of respect for the president overall is a violation of Romans 13:1-7 as well. Threatens those who are disabled and elderly as well a s those who are poor and hungry. We all know the "cuts" lately have been targeted at the least of these.

Chad Mathis - Threatens to repeal the Affordable Care Act. No. Committed unethical abandonment of patient care. I was the victim. Personally have reason to be against him. And he is arrogant. A doctor who opposes helping those who are sick be able to get insurance that can help them afford healthcare? Bitter irony. Committed mudslinging right out of the gate. Wants to lower corporate taxes. That is the opposite of what needs to be done.

Gary Palmer - Have not heard much about him, but he also opposes the Affordable Care Act and fails to understand that as long as people can go directly through insurance companies to get insurance, free markets are still working. Threatens to "cut" spending which translates to more cuts for those who are disabled, veterans, poor, hungry, and elderly as well as college students. 

Robert Shattuck - Who? But I like his acknowledgement: "The premium subsidies under the Affordable Care Act are just taking effect and provide a significant benefit. Unemployment benefits can be extended. There are job training programs galore. More could be spent on education. Food stamps could be expanded." So let's see. Wants to help the sick? Yes. Wants to help the poor? Yes. Wants to help students? Yes. I may have found a good guy here who understands what his potential constituents are going through and will fight for them.

Tom Vigneulle - How do you even say his name? Haven't heard much about him either. 

Issue: Budget. 

What is their mindset regarding programs that help the least of these, or the poor? Consider that many elderly, disabled, and veterans fall into the category of poor as well.

Scott Beason - Does not seem to understand Social Security is not just about the elderly but also the disabled.

Will Brooke - Wants to privatize everything. This will not work.

Paul DeMarco - The only thing that makes sense about him is that he does think it is appropriate to stop payment to congressional members if both chambers do not approve a budget before the start of a fiscal year.

Chad Mathis - Well, based on his standing, the disabled, elderly, college students, veterans, and poor and hungry are all at risk again. He does not realize the painstaking efforts that agencies go through to reduce any fraud to start with and seems to think there is more fraud than what even exists. Less than 1 percent in all agencies. Typical tea party for you though. Cut the benefits from the hungry, cut them from the veterans, cut them from the disabled, cut them from the elderly, and cut them from the college students. 

Gary Palmer - Send spending programs back to states to avoid duplication. That fails to consider many states do rely on federal fudging for the federal programs that have been delegated to states. Definitely worse.

Robert Shattuck - No preset ideas. Which means he has a fresh approach.

Tom Vigneulle - Another privatize everything person. And wants to cut everything. 

Are they trying to buy their way in? All but Robert Shattuck. Which actually does make feel better about him even though his approach is a bit less conventional. Also he does not have any known endorsements (people or organizations buying him). This would actually mean a clean campaign overall when they head into the general election in November. 

Dear God, as we approach primaries this week, may we all make informed decisions in accordance with your words, not only in Matthew 25:31-46, but also in Romans 13:1-7, and in other passages where You talk about how our approach should be regarding money, helping the least of these, helping the poor, and what Your approach would be. If our approach is not inline with Your approach, may we realign the approach so that it follows in accordance with Yours. Thank You for giving me understanding and a brain to use the tools that have been given to me so that I could make a more informed decision. In Jesus' Name, Amen!

Don't Look for Unnecessary Trouble

Psalm 18:30 - This God—his way is perfect; the word of the Lord proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.

Psalm 18:30 - As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the Lord is flawless.

Isaiah 41:13 - For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, "Fera not, I am the one who helps you."

Isaiah 41:13 (CEV) - I am the Lord your God. I am holding your hand, so don't be afraid. I am here to help you.

Dear God, guide me through every step of the way, through times of trouble and times of peace. And that requests extends through the primary elections this week as I work through what Your word overall says regarding treatment of those who are the least of these. Help me utilize the newspaper's charts and Matthew 25:31-46 effectively. Give me wisdom. In Jesus Name, Amen!
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