Wednesday, November 18, 2015

No Fear. Today Is What We Have...

Most of us are trying to hold back stark emotions and concern over the past week's events in Paris and other parts of the world.  I struggle with anger and fear and this changing world looking so frightening. It is so easy to be overcome with concern and our focus be consumed with anxiety over it all. Maybe we should just turn off the news and disconnect for a while and look outside our front doors.

All we have is today. I'm not saying to put your head in the sand and ignore the future, but truly, when we focus so much on what might come we miss out on how we can minister to people on this day. The only time we are promised.

All we have is today to affect change for God in our own neighborhood and communities. We have today to smile and care and love those around us. I have wrestled with the scriptures below over the past week. I fight against the love your enemies passage but it is truth. I am called to it no matter what.

I have to try.
Praying for people I fear and come close to hating is a great starting place.

Today, I pray. I pray for my heart to be changed and for God to change the hearts of those that are filled with hatred and a lust for killing. I pray for peace but am also thankful for the fact that disaster and fear make people look for something that truly has hope and that something is Jesus. I pray with thanksgiving for the fact that we are saved through Jesus and no matter what happens to our earthly bodies we know the end of the story and goodness- it is beautiful!!

Matthew 5:43-48Love for Enemies

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that?48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

Isaiah 41:10

So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;

 I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Fear paralyzes me. Fear stops me in my tracks. Sometimes I let fear scream louder than the strong quiet whisper of God's voice.  That is when I must stop listening to the world and quietly study what God says and wait for Him to give me peace. He says over and over not to fear. For fear to be banished I have to stop and listen and be strengthened. It makes me think of the song our children used to sing...God is bigger than the boogie man.
Yes, indeed He is.

On a lighter note- Our youngest gentle giant brought us some old screens that someone did not want. I had some fun taking off the screen part and adding chicken wire to the back to make a Christmas card display. So- I'm ready friends for your Christmas cards! Bring em on! :)

Also- we are still more than a little bit excited about our new little baby girl addition to the family. Our daughter in law (love) is the cutest and sweetest pregnant girl I have ever seen.  This pic below is of my husband and I on the beach with our oldest gentle giant when he was around two.

This one is from this past August and the announcement that our first grand baby was on the way.
What a joyful day!!
We are loving documenting the baby sightings!

Here she is sucking her thumb.
Yes, I will probably take millions of pictures of this little girl and will be unashamed to share them with you. Obviously. Ha!

So to close out this long blog post I give a look into Thanksgiving past and take a deep breath and long for next week to come fast! Hey all you us at the ranch!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Thank You God...

Thoughts from Ann Voskamp- "One Thousand Gifts"

Unless we are intentionally giving God glory and thanks 
throughout our days- unintentionally we give way to grumbling.

1 Thessalonians 5:18

18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Can thanksgiving to God lay a sound foundation under our lives?
Is the height of my joy dependent on the depths of my thanksgiving?
As long as thanks is possible then JOY is possible.

Here is a wonderful tool for getting a little more into the Word in November. It's amazing how the scriptures come alive when you slowly write them down. Enjoy your time communing with God!
Chart taken from:

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Now There Are Three...

These two precious lovebirds are going to have a baby. A GIRL!
 James 1:17-18
17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. 18 He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.
Tiny fingers, tiny toes, little itty bitty clothes.
Dresses and ribbons and hair to curl, 
we are tickled pink she's having a girl.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

October- How I love you...

Another reason we love October beyond the cooler fall air and lovely colors of orange and yellows is the fact that our oldest arrived in this world in October. Happiest of Birthday's to our oldest gentle giant.
October always ushers in trips to the ranch for fall fun.
Oh how we miss these little kiddo days but it is still fun to head to the ranch and tramp around with these now grown up people. We are looking forward to October and also November and Thanksgiving with family and quiet and peace and fires and laughter at the ranch.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Quick Stop In New Orleans...

 First stop...
This was a fun experience and super good food...
We stayed in a little apartment right in the French Quarter off of Frenchman's street. 
Our oldest son talked us into finding a place to stay from this website: Airbnb
I was a little hesitant but it was wonderful and quirky and quaint and within walking distance to many tourist attractions. Oh, and it was only $100.00 for 5 of us. 3 bedrooms, kitchen and 1 bath. Yep. Nice.

 We walked around and took in all the humidity and sights that we could. It's an interesting place.
 Just say NO to this street. Bourbon St. We accidentally roamed down it for a few blocks. Dark.

The huge live oaks were absolutely gorgeous.

We enjoyed an early supper and then a long sit and talk on our balcony. You could hear the jazz from Frenchman's street very clearly. It was nice.
When we got up in the morning our battery on the car was dead. Believe me, we were begging for help. Amazing how many people just looked away. God is good though- a nice woman finally stopped and jumped us off.  Thankful for kind hearted people. Isn't our girl a cutie pie? 
  We were in New Orleans less than 24 hours but this place was a two time stop for us. 
Yes, it is that good. 
 Messy but good. :)
So, I will say goodbye for today with this view from our airbnb terrace balcony.  A nice place to sit and ponder this question that we were thinking about as we walked these streets. We saw so many people that had such a darkness about them. Almost like looking into the eyes of someone possessed.  A palatable darkness, almost like it hovered in the air on those streets and in the people.  I had the thought and wondered if we could feel their darkness so profoundly, could they in turn feel our "light"? Can they see and feel that we have Jesus living in us and through us and giving us life? I hope so. I wanted to cry out His name to help clear the darkness.  Most of us don't walk in such dark places in our everyday lives, but it is there and we need to have an everyday game plan to further the Kingdom and fortify our hearts.  

Father, help us to walk as children of Your light telling Your plan of salvation and the good news of what Jesus has done for us.  Help us to rescue the lost in Your name and help them to see that they too can be free and have the light and Your Spirit to live in them.