Name 3 major things in your life that make you tick, and why.
1. God - without faith and the assurance of salvation I would be as lost as a goose and have no direction to head in. God keeps me centered.
2. Steve - my husband. He's my knight in shining armor. He is there for me and is so good to me. He's a great husband and father.
3. My family - my family is my world. I love them so much. Getting together with them gets me focused on love and fun and spending time together and leaves the hustle and bustle of the world outside.
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
Name 3 major things in your life that make you tick, and why.
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
A week or so ago, I rambled on the topic of accepting myself and my size as just a part of me and began the process of liberating myself from the prison of self-judgement.
So far, so good.
I believe that women of all sizes (including me) deserve a chance to prove themselves to others as well as to themselves, based on character and deeds, rather than how they look. I have worked hard this week at not being disgusted with myself and have to say that it's been a good week.
The years of having an unhealthy relationship with my body, food and self-esteem are past me now, and I look forward to learning to treat my body well, feed it as it needs it, and boosting my self-esteem greatly.
Realizing that I deserve the respect and dignity that is afforded to any woman who has accomplished these things in life regardless of my size has just moved me into a place to where I am comfortable asking for what I need as well as into a place where I am no longer afraid of how I am perceived by others. I am a woman of worth, not only in God's eyes, but finally in my own.
I am so thankful for the size acceptance sites on the web. Reading the different sites have really helped me a lot in the last two weeks, and I look forward to reading more!
Posted by Laurie Ann at 12:00 PM
Saturday, November 05, 2005
Self-esteem comes in all sizes.....
I'm learning that self-esteem comes in all sizes. It's truly a one-size-fits-all thing! Self-esteem shouldn't be based on how large (or small) you are.
I think size-esteem is a good way to put what I'm gravitating toward. I am tired of putting myself down just because of my size. I am a short, fat woman. My secret is out. I stand 5'4, and while I won't give you my weight number, I can tell you it's substantial enough to make me cringe when I see it written down.
I'm liberating myself from this prison of self-judgement. God loves me. My husband loves me. My family loves me. My friends love me.
Now, I love me.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 9:01 AM
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
Posted by Laurie Ann at 9:19 PM
My quiet time morning routine is reading the Bible (I'm in Matthew and Psalms right now) and prayer. It's so quiet and peaceful because I'm the only one up. I love that time and I guard it jealously.
This morning I was reading Matthew 3-4. This passage baffled me:
Matthew 3: 7-10: But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing, he said to them: "You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not think you can say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father.' I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.
Were the Pharisees and Sadducees there hanging out and tormenting people or were they being baptized? It seems kind of mean of John the Baptist to say if they were coming to get baptized. I mean, you think you're doing something good and get called "a brood of vipers"?
Also, I loved re-reading Matthew 4. It was about the temptation of Christ in the wilderness. He was so strong and resolute in resisting and it really gives me hope and strength to draw on to resist when I am tempted to sin. It was also about Him preaching and calling the first disciples. Verse 24 says: News about him spread all over Syria, and people brought to him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures, and the paralyzed, and he healed them.
He is such a gracious and loving Savior. Definitely the Great Physician!
Posted by Laurie Ann at 1:20 PM
Monday, October 31, 2005
I realized that I was awake when I saw the hour change on the clock. 2:00 a.m.
Why had I awakened? I listened carefully to the different sounds in the house.
Asleep in the bed beside me was my beloved husband. His almost rhythmic snoring indicated that his sleep was undisturbed. I got out of the bed and padded down the hall to check on my step-daughter. She, too, was soundly sleeping, snuggling comfortably beneath her favorite blanket made with love by her grandmother.
I laid back down to sleep the remaining few hours of the morning, but I was unable to re-enter dreamland.
I rose and made my way to the recliner, pulling an afghan over my lap. As I looked around the silent, dimly lit den, my eyes fell across items that I took for granted during the day.
The early morning hours somehow made them all look different.
I looked at the family portraits on the wall. Seeing our family together reminded me of our closeness. I felt blessed and told the Lord so.
My eyes fell on the bookshelf by the doorway. I saw Steve's Bruce Lee figures and remembered the smile on his face when he opened them as birthday presents.
I looked at the fireplace and was reminded of the gifts he had given me. Two porcelain dolls on the mantle, another on the hearth.
I remembered the night we bought our television. I remembered the fun we had picking it up.
I looked at the carpet, the sofa and the glider rocker.
Then I looked at my Bible. Picking it up, I read. I didn't read a specific chapter. I read a few of the underlined passages that God had used to speak to me in the past, and soaked them up once again.
Blessing upon blessing. I prayed and thanked God for my salvation, praising Him for the salvation of my family also. I asked for His protection for my family. I thanked Him for our jobs, for our extended families. I prayed about work and knew God was listening to my prayer. I almost heard an audible voice saying, "Sleep now, my child. You've seen what you needed to. My love and presence is in every part of your life, even when you are normally sleeping."
As I climbed back into bed almost an hour and a half later, my husband stirred. "What's wrong?" he asked.
"Nothing, honey. Nothing at all. Everything is right." I answered, rubbing his back.
He turned over and pulled me close to him, my head resting on his shoulder.
Yes, I slept. In less than five minutes I re-entered the sleep from which God had awakened me.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 7:48 AM
Tuesday, October 25, 2005
Posted by Laurie Ann at 3:19 PM
Tuesday, October 18, 2005
I am an incredibly selfish person. I realized this during prayer time this morning. I was praying for my grandmother and begging God to let her have one more Christmas with us. I remembered pleas from last year for the same thing.
I went to see Maw-Maw at the hospital last night and it broke my heart. Oh, we had a good visit, but Alzheimer's is a thief and a destroyer. She is winding down. I can tell. I really think something is up because my dad, who has a very very strong dislike for my grandmother and has NEVER spoken positively about him (strangely she still loves him, despite the emotional abuse and alcoholism that just about killed me) called me on my way from church to the hospital to ask me mom's cell phone number (which he knows) so he could call her and check on Maw-Maw. I was moved by his compassion but almost had to pull over the car when it hit me that he doesn't even like her. She must be bad off.
My visit with her was great. She was a little addled and confused, as are most Alzheimer's patients, and I had to repeat things like what church I went to, what I thought made her fall, assurances that she was going to be okay (oh, you think it was because of the dehydration? I never thought of that!) a gazillion times. I don't mind. I loved our visit and she was really more alert than she usually is and we even watched a television show together. She laughed at it at the appropriate times (and some not so appropriate - it was Who's Line is it Anyway) and followed the skits.
Still, I was depressed over our visit. She's weakening and she's starting to say things like, "I'm getting old, I guess. I can't remember anything anymore." She never used to say that. We were talking about church and she said she wanted me to take her to her church that she hasn't been to in years (she went right up until the time she was admitted to the retirement home and has gone a few times since then) and I promised her that as soon as she got better I would. She said she'd have to get her hair fixed first. Now that is Maw Maw, LOL!
Still, this morning as I prayed for her to get better I listed all the reasons I thought she should. Christmas being a big one, Kristyn's wedding in March, seeing the boys (I have 5 year old twin cousins) grow up and get a few years older, etc. I realized what an incredibly selfish person I was when I told God that I wish He'd let us keep her until Christmas.
I was suddenly dumbstruck by the absurdity of my prayer. Christmas and then what? Let her die after we've had our picture perfect wonderful family get-together or stick around for the New Year, Easter, her birthday, Mother's Day, repeat the same year over....I cried over this during prayer time this morning as I realized I had to surrender my grandmother to God (not that she already wasn't His but I surrendered to His will and not mine.) I'm not a boo-hooer. Well, I must be because I NEVER cry but I did a few weeks ago when I saw The Notebook. Anyway, I wept. I was so glad that no one was up. Wilson looked at me like, "You are one crazy woman!" but he let me hold him and love on him. That was comforting.
I have a reassurance that God is in control and if He wants her to be with us at Christmas she will. If He wants me to focus more on Him and less on family at Christmas then He has gotten my attention. God is good and His mercies never fail. When we falter, as I did in my selfishness, He waits with loving arms and holds our heads against His chest so we can hear His heartbeat and get back in rhythm with Him. I feel more centered after my surrender this morning. Much more peaceful and confident that God's will is best, not mine. Yes, it can be painful but God is there to heal our hurts and wipe away our tears and draw us closer to Him when we need it.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 3:13 PM
Thursday, October 13, 2005
My reasons are valid, I believe. They include, but are not limited to:
1. Trying to get a puppy out from under the bed so I could check his stitches.
2. Husband let above-mentioned puppy outside and he went wild with glee at the roofers working on the next door neighbor's house. He just wanted to catch the shingles they were throwing off the roof. There was a pursuit by said husband, some colorful words said to puppy who led him on a great chase and either wore himself out from being weak or just plain gave up the marathon running because of the words, which included stop, kill, ticked off, and you better get your %$@ back in the house right now!!!!!!
3. Roofers in the street, going back and forth to their trucks with wheel barrows. I know pedestrians have the right-of-way but come on!
4. A loud police siren and Officer Friendly reminding me that tapping my break at the stop sign and just going on didn't qualify as coming to a complete stop. He was really nice, though. He said, "I know it's busy in the neighborhood and that you're in a hurry, but we have to encourage safety." Big time thanks that whoever was on the other end of his CB said nice things about me and I wasn't ticketed.
5. A quick stop by Chevron for breakfast proved eventful. Above-referenced husband stepped out of the car before me and I noticed his britches were split, probably from chasing puppy referenced in reasons 1 and 2.
6. Quick trip home to let hubby change.
7. A freakish amount of traffic on the highway.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 8:25 AM
Monday, October 10, 2005
“ Listen to advice and accept instruction, and in the end you will be wise. Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the LORD's purpose that prevails. ”- Proverbs 19:20-21
This was the Verse of the Day on www.biblegateway.net's website.
I think about the number of times that I say I'm going to do something and the door slams shut in my face, or the times I say, "No way!" and end up having the best time of my life.
God's purposes always prevail. He has led me through valley's, mountains, deserts, stormy seas, and drifting in the clouds at different times in my life.
May I always listen to His instruction and trust that His will will prevail in my life, not mine.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 4:06 PM
Thursday, October 06, 2005
In a group I'm in, a friend posted this, "What about your struggles? Is there any chance, any possibility, that you have been selected to struggle for God's glory? Have you "been granted for Christ's sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for Him, but also to suffer for His sake" (Philippians 1:29)?
::::::: I thought I lost a very good friend for not backing down from my religion. She referred to God as the Sky Fairy. In the past we had always respected each other's right to believe what we believe. She just went right past that and attacked my God. I had no choice but to distance myself from her. When I did, I lost a lot of friends. One stuck by my side. Thanks, friend. You know who you are. I missed my friends so much. We'd have get-together's once a year and I was no longer able to attend since I listened to God and reconciled my marriage. They thought I was a loon for going back to my husband. God restored my marriage. Again, only one of those friends believed in me or respected my choice. Thanks, friend. And thanks, God, for sticking by my side. Though I suffer for You, You always bless me and that is my reward.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 9:42 PM
Thursday, September 29, 2005
One of the first websites I visit when I first get on the computer each day is www.cnn.com. They are very good about covering "Breaking News" and I like to see if anything happened overnight that will affect my little corner of the world. CNN is not only a news organization but an outlet for humor also.
For instance, this morning, at http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/09/28/delay/index.html, I read, "House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat, described congressional Republicans as "plagued by a culture of corruption."
Let me translate this for you.
Nancy Pelosi calls The Republican Side of Congress. (Their number is unlisted because of prank calls by the likes of her.) She says, "Hello kettle, this is the pot. You're black!"
Posted by Laurie Ann at 8:02 AM
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
I grew up in a Christian home. My mother sang of Jesus and read to me of Jesus before I even knew who she was talking about. I never remember a time of "not" knowing Jesus. I grew up singing of His love for me, my love for Him, Him having the whole world in His hands, Him loving the little children, loving him because He first loved me, and I never doubted that He did that.
I don't ever remember "not" being in church. Mother and Daddy both made sure we were there every time the doors opened. They taught us about giving - I was always excited to put my quarters in the offering plate or in the envelope at Sunday School, and although I knew I was supposed to do it I didn't know why.
I grew up in the church. Sunday School, Mission Friends, GA's, Acteens, Youth Group, Church Choir, you name it, I was into it. I loved church. When I graduated from children's church to big church I remember the first time mother let me go to the sanctuary. The preacher preached on Isaiah 55 and when the preacher read, "Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? and your labour for that which satisfieth not?" I raised my hand to answer him, LOL! I knew the answer and I wanted him to call on me so I could tell him that I knew that nothing satisfies us but God.
I looked for Jesus in church, because that's where mama said He lived. I knew He lived in my heart, too, but I wanted to see Him in His house and remember being disappointed that He was a no-show during the service.
When I was about 8 years old, after a particularly firey sermon that involved a fist banging on the pulpit, the invitation was given. A friend from school trotted down the aisle and I went right behind her. I wanted some of whatever she was getting. The preacher talked to me and I believe with all my heart that I was saved. I was baptized and so happy.
In my teens I began to not be as close to God as I was when I was younger. I was still in church but I was at the age to where mother no longer held me and rocked me and sang of His love for me anymore. I had a Bible that was opened on Sundays and Wednesday nights and maybe Saturday evening to go over my SS lesson for the next day. When I was about 14 the preacher asked a (what I now understood!) rhetorical question. It was, "If you died in a wreck after you left church right now where would you spend eternity?" Well, I wasn't sure at all. I mean, surely God would take me but after my teenage angst and ugliness? Not so sure about it the more I thought of it. I responded to the invitation and asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior. I went through some rough patches in life where I didn't not believe in Him but you sure couldn't have known He was a part of my life by the way I acted.
Around the age of 17 we went to a retreat called Faith Week. I recommited my life to Him and have been assured of my salvation ever since. My walk with God has taken different lanes in life but I have always known He was beside me and will never leave me or forsake me. My whole trust is in Him and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that He loves me and gave His life for me. He moved from my heart to my heart of hearts. He filled my mind, my heart, my very being with Himself and His love for me and made me want to share it with others.
Not a very powerful testimony but it's Him. It's all about Him. I guess it's more powerful than I thought when I put it that way.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 10:41 AM
Monday, August 15, 2005
Yesterday was the first day of first grade. I dressed her, packed her lunch, fixed her hair and stood at the end of the driveway, placing a little homemade yarn necklace with a picture of a school bus around her neck that said, "My name is Kristyn and I ride bus number 2." When I asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up she said that she wanted to be the one who picked up the garbage or drive the mail truck to deliver mail to her family.
Today, she got up, dressed herself, fixed her lunch, hopped in the car and went off to college. Now she wants to be a chef and is double majoring in culinary arts and restaurant management.
Where did the time go?
Posted by Laurie Ann at 10:28 AM
Friday, August 12, 2005
::::::: As a fellow sufferer I can tell you that I understand what you are saying here. It has nothing to do with being stronger. We are as strong in the Lord as we can be when we put all our efforts and faith and hope into Him. We trust Him. We love Him. We know He wants the best for us and is able to do anything.
We can use words and prayers to fight depression, but when the huge waves start coming in due to something beyond our capacity to control (chemical imbalances, medicine getting off track, etc.) we find that we have to just pray what we can pray and trust God to help us do what we can to get through it.
Perhaps depression is our "thorn in the flesh" (2 Co 12:7-10). If so, then it's not going anywhere. It's there and although it can be brought under control it spirals sometimes. It just does. We have to rely on Jesus to intercede for us when we cannot do it ourselves. In the middle of the storm we have to call on God but row away from the rocks in the best way that we are able. He steps in when we are unable and carries us through those times.
The important thing that I think we all know about depression is that there are different types. I tend to group them into:
Sand and Gravel - circumstantial - caused by things like pms, Satan attacking, emotional issues, things that can get better with time and prayer and go away
Concrete - God's got the only jackhammer big enough to bust it up from our chemically imbalanced bodies
Both are real forms of depression and are equal as far as the severity it can cause the courses of our emotions and lives to take, but there are just times that sand and gravel can be swept up easier than concrete busting.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 4:00 PM
Monday, August 01, 2005
Posted by Laurie Ann at 9:02 PM
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Posted by Laurie Ann at 4:50 PM
On Forgiving and Forgetting...
Although it is hard to lay the issues aside and forgive the person in a major upset, I think it can be done, even if the person doesn't acknowledge that they hurt you. Accepting the preson's behavior and acknowledging that you are hurt by it is a step toward forgiveness. I think when we sometimes think that when we forgive someone we are automatically supposed to be happy and balance is restored to our universe. Oh no. That's not the case at all.
We have to look at the true meaning of forgiveness. My buddy Webster defines forgiveness this way:
1. To excuse for a fault or an offense; pardon.
2. To renounce anger or resentment against.
3. To absolve from payment of (a debt, for example).
Excusing or pardoning someone for a major issue is out for me. I just cannot do it. That has to be left up to God. I can handle renouncing the anger and resentment, but only after a period of time. When someone hurts you, you cannot, or at least *I* cannot say, "No hard feelings over the breaking of our vows, dear. The papers are in the mail and I'll see you around." I can't live a happily ever after life after I have been just hurt to the core for a period of time. It takes lots and lots of prayer and attitude adjusting. Eventually I am able to let go of the anger and resentment others inflict on me because that anger and resentment eat me up.
The third definition, absolving from payment of (a debt, for example) comes easier to me. I think about what God did for me with Jesus and it's pretty easy to let go of that need to make someone who has apologized a million times over squirm under my, "I just cannot believe you did this to me!" thumb.
Forgetting........oh my. I just don't think we have the capacity to do that. God does, though. He can help us let it sting a little bit less as time goes by, until eventually we are okay with things.
My dad ripped our family wide open through alcoholism. It took me a long time to get over the resentment of it and to be able to say, "You know what, Daddy? I forgive you." He never asked for my forgiveness because he openly will not acknowledge that he is the one who is responsible for living by himself now. My mother took it for years and years, 30 something, to be exact, and she finally got out of Dodge. I don't make Da Chief (daddy) fight for my love and affection or kind words or phone calls, but I haven't forgotten what happened. It's more like I am at peace with it now because I made a decision to adopt the attitude, "It is what it is." I'm okay with that.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 4:48 PM
Monday, July 11, 2005
Posted by Laurie Ann at 6:34 AM
Tuesday, July 05, 2005
The Joys of My Day
1. Questioned whether the advertising executive who thought up the bear butt's for the Charmin commericial ever got fired. Bring back Mr. Whipple!
2. Researched and found out that the "f" word or variations thereof were used 189 times in the movie "Monster" - the Aileen Wournos story.
3. Witnessed my former high school typing and history teacher, who was later to be my co-worker, at The Mellow Mushroom, chugging beer.
4. Answered 84,000 the question, "Great to see you back! Where have you been?" to everyone who asked me why I was out from work for the last week and a half. The story kept getting shorter and shorter and now the response is ultimately, "I was on sick leave, some kind of rash."
5. Decided to boycott Oprah. I hate Tom Cruise and she should have never had him on her show. Yeah, I've been ruminating on it *that* long!
6. Patiently allowed my husband to say, "Dipluma" (rather than di-ploam-uh) without correcting him once. Sometimes they just need to be allowed to speak freely, ya know?
7. Tried to open my office window so I could step out on the ledge for a smoke break but realized it was for my own good that I couldn't go out there as I was so mad at a lady I explained the travel policies to so clearly that 4 year old would have understood and would have probably fallen over the edge from shaking - yes, I was that frazzled!
8. Thought about how much fun Lynda and I had at Bubba and Gerald's when I visited her in Austin. Those were the days!!!!!!!!!!!
9. Realized that Dick Clark is finally beginning to show his age. This made me sad. :-(
10. Saw these big M&M's and thought, "I hope they still have them when I'm in the mood for chocolate." It will be my luck that they don't, but giant M&M's? What more could a girl want?
Posted by Laurie Ann at 5:54 PM
Sunday, May 22, 2005
Luke 10:38-42 (New International Version)New International Version (NIV)Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society
At the Home of Martha and Mary
38As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet listening to what he said. 40But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!"
41"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, 42but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her."
Laurie's Sunday, May 22, 2005, Response:
The excitement of having Jesus into your home! Can you just imagine? I believe that Mary and Martha already knew Jesus because of the bold way that she presented her case to the Lord. Lazarus was their brother, right? Jesus wept when he died, so we know the ladies knew Him as well.
Martha was so sweet to open her home to Jesus and His disciples. I doubt it was a scheduled stop, but she was willing to serve right there on the spot. Are you that way or do you have to really think about things before you do them? I have the gift of hospitality, but I am uncomfortable hostessing large parties of people. I ponder it and worry over it almost to the point of hyperventilation. When I am a co-hostess, the burden is considerably less. When Martha opened her home to Him, do you think she did this with the expectation of Mary helping her prepare and serve, perhaps just having the expectation and not telling Mary she needed her help, and then just getting flat out mad when she didn't?
And what about Mary? I wonder what she thought when Martha opened her home to Jesus and His followers. I wonder if she thought, "Yay! Jesus is coming here. He's so great and wise. I can't wait to sit at his feet in an informal setting and just soak up His wise words of wisdom! That was so sweet of Martha to ask them in!"
My prayer is this: Lord, I praise You for the opportunities I have to learn so much about You through the interactions and personalities of these two ladies, as well as Your wise words to Martha. Help me ponder them in my heart and as I read the chapter and begin some more indepth study tomorrow and throughout the week. Lay the truths You have ready for me to learn on my heart and let me put those truths into practice. In Jesus' Name I pray. Amen.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 8:36 PM
Monday, May 09, 2005
Posted by Laurie Ann at 11:02 AM
Thursday, April 28, 2005
We have a new addition to the family. It's a boy. 3 lbs., 2 oz. Very furry. Toy poodle. Birthday was March 1, 2005. We brought him home on the tonight!
He's restored so much of the joy to our home and really livened things up. It's not quiet anymore, that's for sure.
We miss Copper. We always will, but we are grateful that God led us to Wilson, another toy poodle.
Yes, Wilson as in Wilson, the Volleyball, from Castaway. He helped Chuck through some rough times on that island and I know our Wilson will help us just as well.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 11:45 PM
Thursday, April 14, 2005
I will miss you forever, little man. I know you know we did the right thing because you never even tried to pull the catheter out. When Dr. Casey gave you your night-night medicine you laid your little head right down and went to sleep. I'm so sorry you suffered for as long as you did, little man. Dr. Leber tried everything he knew to do. We had you in his office every day and Mommy held you as much as she could. I know you were tired and you fought harder than any fur-baby should had to have fought. Copper, you hung in there, man. You knew how much we loved you and I'm so sorry we couldn't do more for you.
Thank you so much for enriching my life. While God didn't bless me with children, He blessed me with you. I consider it a privilege to have been your mommy and daddy loves you so much, too. 10 years is a long time, angel-dog, and you know how much you are missed. Mama, Jennifer, Steve's mother and daddy, Melanie, Brenda....oh, baby. You were *so* loved! What a testament to your life with us here on earth, little guy! I am so glad that we had you for as long as we did and I rejoice that you are no longer suffering.
Thank you, Baby. Thank you for the ride home the night we bought you, the night when you snuggled against my neck.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 3:04 AM
Friday, April 08, 2005
What we think, good or bad, really does affect our actions and the course of our lives.
Whatever is true,
Whatever is noble,
Whatever is right,
Whatever is pure,
Whatever is lovely,
Whatever is admirable -
If anything is excellent or praiseworthy -
Think about such things.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 9:32 AM
Tuesday, April 05, 2005
And then He said,
"I love you no matter what size you are."
"I didn't create you to have children but to spoil rotten all the ones in your life!"
"I love you! Get back in there and chat with your friends."
"By the way, that wasn't Me that told you to leave."
God is so good.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 8:24 PM
Sunday, April 03, 2005
Sunday Morning Sermon Notes:
150+ references in the NT re: Christ's return - the Second Coming!
It will be Jesus
Don't know when
Are to be ready
Whether we are ready or not; saved or unsaved, it's not going to affect when Christ comes again
We are to have a passion for the people who don't already know Jesus
Our desire should be to honor and praise hHim and share *share* Him
Great day for those who are ready
Terrible for tthose who do not know Him as their Lord and Savior
Luke 24:50: When he had led them out to the vicinity of Bethany, he lifted up his hands and blessed them.
Acts 1:9-11: After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight. They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”
John 10:9-10; 28-30: I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. - I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. 29My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand. I and the Father are one.”
1 Tessalonians 4:13-18: Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words.
Matthew 16:27: For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father's glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what he has done.
Matthew 26:64: “Yes, it is as you say,” Jesus replied. “But I say to all of you: In the future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.”
John 14:1-4: “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God[a]; trust also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.”
2 Peter 3:4; 8-10: They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our fathers died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” - But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare.
John 16:7: But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.
Isaiah 9:6-7: For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David's throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this.
Revelation 5:9-13: And they sang a new song: “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.” Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. In a loud voice they sang: “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!” Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing: “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!”
Revelation 20:11-15: Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no place for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he had done. Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. If anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 2:15 PM
Thursday, March 24, 2005
At 4:00 this morning I heard a little sound scraping at the side of the bed. Copper, our 10 year old toy poodle, had apparently been unsuccessful in waking up Steve, so he tried me. I got up and let himout and just felt so good. Cozy. I had a good feeling! I was drowsy but refreshed by the night's sleep.
As I was standing there waiting for him to do what he needed to do I began to pray. Normally I do not begin praying until I get up at 5:15 or 5:30, but this morning I felt led to get a head start on it, I guess. As Iwalked through the kitchen to the little jar of biscuits Copper gets, I prayed. As I poured some iced tea for my parched throat, still, I prayed. As I climbed back under the covers in the cool of themorning, still, I prayed.
45 minutes later I was still praying and not asleep! I believe God was directing my prayer time with Him. The words came from my heart and I know without a doubt they were reaching Him. I got back up as I knew I wasn't going to go back to sleep. I reached a point to where I concluded my prayer and my reading time with God was so special this morning. I love reading His Word and am in Judges now.
You know, I really don't feel like words do justice to the sense of calm and peace and connection I felt with God this morning. I am not a charismatic person, actually, I border more on the side of conservative/traditional/whatever.
I think I found out what the expression "caught up in the Spirit" means this morning, though. May God be glorified by it.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 3:54 PM
Friday, March 11, 2005
Yesterday, in Proverbs 10, verse 19 jumped out at me.
KJV: In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise.
NIV: When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise.
Well, for a chatterbox like me it's hard to hold my tongue. I mean, I love to talk! I see the point of speaking less but how can it be sinful if I watch what I'm saying?
NLT: Don't talk too much, for it fosters sin. Be sensible and turn off the flow!
Oh! I I see. I am such a chatterbox and this verse just really convicted that I needed to think about mastering the art of silence. I can see how talking a lot would foster sin. Potential for gossip or just giving too much information about something is great - especially from the chatterbox that I am.
I am reminded of a story my mother told me. I was young, I'm guessing somewhere between 3 and 5. I lost my voice. I was so hoarse. She was mystified as I wasn't running a fever, nor complaining with a sore throat. She took me to Dr. Yates and before he even looked in my throat he knew what the problem was. He said, "Barbara, you're going to have to keep her quiet! She just talks too much." Or something to that effect. Anyway, my mother found the prospect of keeping me quiet akin to herding cats, which is nearly impossible.
Now that I am older I would love to say I have matured and lost the chatterbox routine but I can't. I'm 34 years old and am *still* chattering away. I am rarely at a loss for words but this verse finds me thinking that perhaps I do need to curtail the chatter.
Yes, but how?
Excuse me while I google this, please.
Wow! Maintaining silence is kind of a New Age thing, huh? I'm going to go look for more.
I pray I be swift to hear; slow to speak, and slow to wrath. (James 1:19)
Lord, make me the wise one who restrains his lips. (Pr. 10:19)
Lord, help me to remember that the perverse tongue will be cut out. (Pr. 10:31)
Lord, make me of a faithful spirit so as to conceal a matter not needing to be said. (Pr. 11:13)
Lord, keep me from being ensnared by the transgression of my lips. (Pr. 12:13)
Lord, teach me when to cover shame prudently. (Pr. 12:16)
Lord, teach me when to conceal knowledge. Keep me from proclaiming foolishness. (Pr. 12:23)
Teach me Lord to guard my mouth and so preserve my life. Keep me from the destruction which comes by opening my lips foolishly. (Pr. 13:3)
Lord, intensify my hatred for lying. (Pr. 13:5)
Lord, I pray that my lips will preserve me. Keep me from proud words. (Pr. 14:3)
Father, keep me from idle chatter and poverty. (Pr. 14:23)
Father, give me the understanding to be slow to wrath, and not impulsive. (Pr. 14:29)
Father, cause wisdom to rest in my heart. Give me understanding. Let me not reveal to men all that is in my heart. (Pr. 14:33)
Lord, I pray that I speak soft answers which turn away wrath, and not harsh words which stir up anger. (Pr. 15:1)
Lord, I pray I that be wise to use knowledge rightly, not to pour forth foolishness. (Pr. 15:2)
Lord, I pray that I study and ponder how to answer. (Pr. 15:28)
Lord, give me knowledge and teach me to spare my words. Give me understanding and a calm spirit. (Pr. 17:25)
I pray Lord that I have the wisdom to hold my peace and shut my lips when it is not wise to speak. (Pr. 17:23)
Posted by Laurie Ann at 8:39 AM
Wednesday, March 02, 2005
Father, I give you the glory for knowing my heart. Thank You for being with me as I go through this test. May all I do and say honor You. I know it's not over. Not even close, but I pray that You will continue to feel me close on Your heels, oh God, as I pursue you. In Jesus' Name I pray. Amen
Posted by Laurie Ann at 3:57 PM
Thursday, February 24, 2005
Answer me when I call to YOU, O my righteous GOD. Give me relief from my distress; be merciful to me and hear my prayer. Psalms 4:1
Thank you thank you thank you, God!
"The LORD has heard my cry for mercy; the LORD accepts my prayer." Psalm 6:9
Father, yesterday morning I sat at the kitchen table, Bible open and heart humbled. I felt so alone. I prayed that You knew the truth and would help me deal with the hurt I am feeling due to K's manipulation and acting out at home. I thanked You for loving me and I trusted You to handle things. I told You how hurt I was and how alone I felt in a house of three. You heard my prayer and accepted it. You answered it for me. Oh, Lord, I do thank you so much.
Praise be to GOD, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld HIS love from me!
Thank you, Lord, for not rejecting my prayer. I do so appreciate your love for me.
Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise.
I will sing of Your love forever, oh, Lord. All day long I will lift my spirit up to You in praise and recognition and appreciation for what you gave me in S's validation of my feelings.
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In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy. Philippians 1:4
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Father, I knew You would come through for me. I knew not when or how or if it would be in the way that I thought I needed, but I prayed with joy because I trusted You and delight in You, even when I am down.
But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. James 1:6
I never doubt that Your know best, Lord.
For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD , "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11
Your plans are always the best ones, Lord, and I trust them. My heart is full of praise that Your plans are carried out and I will glorify You and honor You for the joy of the perfection of Your plans.
In Jesus' Name I pray,
Posted by Laurie Ann at 8:05 AM
Thursday, February 10, 2005
Just because I have been called untrustworthy does not mean that I am.
Just because I have been called a liar does not mean that I am.
Just because I feel unworthy does not mean that I am.
Just because I have been accused of wrong-doing does not mean that I did.
Just because I have been prayed for by friends, just because God loves me, just because I know what is true and God knows what is true, just because God forgave me, I will forgive those who have wronged me.
Just because I could sit in sackcloth and ashes with just cause does not mean that I will.
Just because I have been redeemed by God, loved by friends, and believe in myself, I will rise and go on with my life.
Just because Satan is trying to confuse and confound me, I will seek the Lord and prove all of the Enemy's lies untrue.
Just because Jesus died for me, I will go on living.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 8:29 AM
Monday, February 07, 2005
Give ear to my prayer--it does not rise from deceitful lips.
May my vindiccation come from you; may your eyes see what is right.
Though you probe my heart and examine me at night, though you test me, you will
I have resolved that my mouth will not sin.
As for the deeds of men--
by the word of your lips
i have kept myself from the ways of the violent
My steps have held to your paths
my feet have not slipped.
I call on you, O God, for you will answer me,
give ear to me and hear my prayer.
Show the wonder of your great love,
you who save by your right hand
those who take refuge in you from their foes.
Keep me as the apple of your eye
hide me in the shadow of your wings
from the wicked who assail me,
from my mortal enemies who surround me.
Posted by Laurie Ann at 9:36 AM