5 reasons to pray & pollen

Good evening y’all! It’s Wednesday. That means I get to go have fun with a bunch of 1st and 2nd graders at church! I just cherish the little class I have on Wednesday nights. They help me make it through the week.

By now, everybody probably knows how I love prayer. Someone may ask the question- Why Pray?

Well, wonder no more! I will give you 5 good reasons to pray.

It works. Moses was the leader of a bunch of the biggest complaining complainers ever was. God was not amused with them a lot of the time. He set fire to their camp to try to put a stop to it.  But Moses prayed & the Lord heard.

Numbers 11:1-2 Now when the people complained, it displeased the Lord; for the Lord heard it, and His anger was aroused. So the fire of the Lord burned among them, and consumed some in the outskirts of the camp. Then the people cried out to Moses, and when Moses prayed to the Lord, the fire was [a]quenched. (NKJV)

It builds your faith. Nothing builds your faith more than praying & then watching things play out for our good.

Luke 22:32 But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.”(NKJV)

It makes a difference. If prayer didn’t make a difference, what good would it be?

Mark 11: 24 Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.(NKJV)

For healing & forgiveness. I wonder if people ran to the Lord for spiritual healing, as quick as we bust up in the urgent care, every time we have an inconvenience,  we would be much better off? My mama used to tell me, “You better get down on your knees and pray.” So thankful I had a praying mama.

James 5:15 And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.(NKJV)

Because the Lord says to. If God is not in the business of taking our troubles and making them blessings, why pray? If we are going to worry about everything why pray? Because prayer changes things, y’all. I have seen many times, situations changing, because praying people were involved.

I Thessalonians 5:16-18 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (NKJV)

So, give it a try. Make it a practice. Why, even make an event of it.

I am so glad you came by to visit with me today. It looks like Spring brought her pollen with her. Oh well. Something new to look at for awhile. And in case you were wondering, my grands are doing awesome. Mr. Sweetie Pants has shown quite the enthusiasm for song leading at church. He is so excited that a 7 year old boy can get up and belt out songs, at the front of the church building, & not get in trouble for it. Because perhaps sometimes there are rules at worship service. Like being quiet. I hope you have a wonderful rest of the week. As for me, I will be going, because I should be washing clothes.

 

photo credit: www.marshallramsey.com, www.pinterest.com

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My week in a couple of words & my take on the latest Supreme Court antics

Miss Neenee & Mr. Sweetie Pants before church

Miss Neenee & Mr. Sweetie Pants before church

Here are some phrases I’ve used this week:

“You win some, you lose some.”

“Honey butter.  Hello there, heaven.”

  (Maybe I just thought that as I was eating my biscuit.  But, it’s totally conversation worthy.)

“I love all ya’ll.”

“You can only do, what you can do.”

“What does that even mean?”

“You have to remember, at the end of the day, God is in control.”

 

That last phrase, I find myself using it more & more.  There are so many disheartening things happening in our country right now.  There are so many wrong things happening.  However, hasn’t that been the case since the beginning of time?  We don’t live in a sinless world.  Because of that, we encounter all kinds of ungodly things.  Our associate minister brought to our attention that back in the 1970s, the Supreme Court voted to ok the killing of unborn babies.  A flag kinda pales in light of that.

About the gay marriage issue, I addressed that here.  No need to beat a dead horse to death.  I still feel the same way.  Love the sinner, not the sin.  And when I say that, I mean it.  We can stand up for something without making ourselves appear hateful & pretentious.  Really.  We can.

Colossians 4:6

Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one. (NKJV)

People with sins need forgiven.  Just like I need forgiveness.  Daily.  How can you bring someone to Christ while beating them over the head with their sin?  You can’t.  Plain & simple.  My prayer today is that we love one another the way Jesus does.  Like my Daddy says,

“Love people like the Lord does.  He loves people enough to let them go to hell if they want to.”

True dat, Daddy.

We need to know when to let go & let God.  That’s all we can do.  Hey, I think I need to add that phrase to my list up there!  We do need to be in the Word.  Reading, studying about what God says about all of this.  Please don’t just go off half cocked about something you think is right.  Be sure.

One more note, I did hear a preacher give a word of encouragement about all the happenings here lately.  It was Bro. Knoll.  He came to do a gospel meeting at Pleasant Grove church of Christ.  He said maybe all of the things going on with the flag, legalizing gay marriages, & the recent church killings was this:

“In the depths of despair people are drawn to the Lord.  Maybe one thing the Lord is trying to do is bring people together.”

Think about it.

I hope everyone had a wonderful July 4th weekend.  We perhaps cooked a lot & ate a lot.  It was spent with family & friends.  That is what truly makes me happy.  Being around my peeps & laughing til my stomach hurts.  Good times.  And these grands, ya’ll, they are too sweet.  My daughter was cutting a watermelon.  She put the knife in the top of it & Mr. Sweetie Pants yells, “I can’t look!!” & covered his eyes with his little hands.  He was so excited.  He even led “Jesus Loves Me” in Sunday School class.  He was so proud of himself.  His Grand was, too.  Until next time, ya’ll, I have to be going because I should be washing clothes.

 

Got to see one of our sweet cousins over the holidays.

Got to see one of our sweet cousins over the holidays.

Miss Neenee got her Starbucks on this week.

Miss Neenee got her Starbucks on this week.

And these 2 had a big announcement.  Congratulations to our EA!

And these 2 had a big announcement. Congratulations to our EA & her sweet fiancé!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Basketball love

We in the South love our sports.  We go by the Proverb of old, from the Bible that says,

“Train up a child to play sports & when he is old, he will not depart from the lessons he has learned from it.”  .

That’s not how that goes?  Well, you could have fooled me! Saying that, it’s basketball season.   Miss Neenee is playing basketball for the first time.  She loves it.  Her best friend, in the whole wide world, plays.  That just makes it that much sweeter!

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We see a lot of the same parents that we play softball with.  Over the course of years you get acquainted with the other parents.  Maybe not know them well, or outside of whatever sports function you are attending.  But, know who their kids are, where they work, go to church, & who they are kin to.  Anyway, we get excited.  We clap loud.  We coach from the stands.  We yell at our kids.  We yell at other people’s kids.  It’s all good.

Let me tell you about an incident that happened to me recently.

The other night our 3rd & 4th grade girl team was lining up for a free throw with the opposing team.  Miss Neenee had been running & working hard & doing her little 4th grade best at this game.  This is the age where the referee still has to tell the girls to dribble the ball.  It’s not a high expectation type thing.  Everything is pretty laid back as far as the rules.  Miss Neenee was lining up at the goal line, when she turns around & looks at me.  She starts fiddlin’ with her necklace.  She runs over to the stands & I take it off of her right quick.  One of the mamas yells,

“This is a ballgame not a beauty review!”

There was another girl that had run up to the stands to give her mama something, too.  So, I didn’t really think much about it.  Once the game was over, this same mama walks over to me & said she hoped I wasn’t mad at her.  She said she was sorry, she had just yelled out before she thought.  I smiled & told her I wasn’t worried about it.  She said her husband told her she might not have said that.  So, she wanted to make sure I wasn’t upset.  I just laughed & told her I had yelled at her daughter, on the court, enough that night, that it was quite alright.  We smiled & parted ways.

You know what I thought after that encounter?  That I really liked that mama.  Her character was just what the Lord said it should have been.  She said something she felt wasn’t right.  Then, she faced it & took care of the problem right then.  I wish I were more like that.  Most of time, if I will say or do something, that’s not right, I lull over it.  That’s right.  I’m a luller.  I drag my feet.   I don’t take action to right the wrong as quickly as I should.  Time goes by & things get better or they don’t.  Why do I wait?  I don’t know.  Maybe a little pride.  Maybe a little not wanting to be wrong.   So, I just let things sit.  We are not perfect.  We all say & do things not pleasing to God.

This is what Jesus had to say about righting wrongs.

Matthew 5:23 Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee;

v. 24 Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift

I want to be more like this mama that knows the right thing to do & does it.  How much better would the world be without bitter feelings & resentment over hateful things others say?  When we say something hurtful, if we went to the persons involved immediately & apologized & made things better it would be more beneficial for everybody.  However, not everyone cares or is big enough to say they are sorry.  When that happens we are still responsible for forgiving that person.  Whether they ask for it or not.  If not, hatred & bitterness can set up in our hearts, just like it has theirs.  Don’t let those things rule your heart.  You have got to have control over your thoughts, actions, and what comes out of your mouth.  However, we are just people.  So, when something comes over you & you act on it, be sure you do like this mama & take care of it quickly.  With a standard of living like that, I bet she sleeps good at night!  My oldest daughter was standing there when this mama came over to talk to me.  When we got home she said,

“You know that was a very adult thing for her to do that.”

Yes, it was.  What a great example, not only for my kids to see, but for me, too!  Looks like the sports our kids grow up playing are not just character builders for the kids, but for the parents, too!  People never cease to amaze me.  You never really know what they are thinking.  They sometimes say things that you don’t quite expect.  When that happens you really get to know what kind of character those folks have.

I am so glad you stopped by to visit with me today.  I have enjoyed having you here.  It is really cold outside here, in Northeast Mississippi.  I hope you have a wonderful rest of the week.  As for me, I have to be going for now, because I should be washing clothes.

Sin that can’t be forgiven

gift of forgiveness

Did you know there is sin that God can’t forgive?  Those sins are sins we don’t ask forgiveness for! Yes, God can forgive any sin there is known to man.  We have to bring those to him & ask forgiveness.  Otherwise, how does the Lord know we are truly repentant?  I want to share with you a personal story about a conversation I had with a loved one.  This is a story of repentance & forgiveness.

After much prayer & faithful patience, (What I really mean is sleepless nights, asking, “Why Lord?”, what could I have done to prevent this?, what can I do to help this?, slight wringing of hands, shortness of breath, and did I say A LOT of prayer??) I had a wonderful, uplifting, repentant, tearful & grave conversation with a loved one about the Lord.  This person had been out of church for some time.  They came to the realization, things in their life just wasn’t right.  They knew the only way to make it right was repentance.  Finally, they bravely took that step to say I am sorry, Lord, please forgive me.  Since that conversation ,this person has certainly been living up to a Christ-like standard. Just the other night I heard them say, “Things are so much better since I started back to church.  Everything just seems easier.  I am so much happier!”  Isn’t it amazing the peace you get from letting go of the sin that weights you down?  How many times do we keep ourselves from that happiness & peace?  All because of our stubbornness & pride.

Psalms 32 is a wonderful explanation to what this disease sin does to you & how you can get rid of it.

Psalms 32: 3 & 4 When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long. For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah.

When we don’t admit that we have sin, we wear ourselves out physically. We lose sleep, we can’t eat, we worry, we stress.  Wouldn’t it just be easier, just to admit our sin?  You would think.  I know personally,sometimes I get stubborn & try to dismiss things.  Or I make excuses to myself about it. However, I should know by now, life is circle.  What comes around, goes around.  You reap what you sow.  If I don’t confess my sins to the Lord, it’s not good.

Psalms 32:5 says this- I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah.

The Lord forgives me when I ask for it.  So, it’s probably a good idea to let go of my stubborn headed, I can do this myself attitude & humble myself- daily.  This means 1. having a humble heart to forgive others. 2. Having a humble heart to say I am sorry to others.  And by all means having a humble heart to keep my mouth shut so that I don’t have to worry about number 2.  Hurting feelings is like breaking a dish.  Sure you can pick up the shattered pieces & put it all back together.  No matter how hard you try to make it just like it was, it will never be the same.  That’s no excuse for not trying to make things as right as you can.  How can you ever be in a right state with God if you have those who you have hurt & are too prideful to ask for forgiveness?  Jesus says you can’t. 

Matthew 5:23 Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember your brother has something against you,

v. 24 leave your gift there before the altar and go your way.  First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.

Pretty self explanatory.  You do someone wrong, go make it right, so that you can stay in a right relationship with God.  Or if you know someone has something against you, no matter if it’s your fault or not.  Try to make it right.  But if you can’t move on.  Do not hang around to let those people drag you down in gloom & doom with them!  Ya’ll, it’s just not worth it!

That is all I am going to say about forgiveness from others, in this article.  I will post another time about what to do when you are at odds with others & you did nothing to cause it.  Because Lord knows it’s bound to happen.  Just keep an open line with God.  We all need forgiveness. Each. And. Every. One. Of. Us. (Bless our hearts!)  I am so glad you came by to visit with me today.  You always brighten my day.  I hope you have a wonderful rest of the day.  Make it happy!  As for me, I have to be going because I should be washing clothes.

An unforgiving spirit

Forgiveness is not something we do for other people.

We do it for ourselves- to get well & move on.

Our preacher taught a lesson about those with unforgiving spirits.  Since I have fallen victim to this before, I took notes & have studied this.  People who have an unforgiving spirit are in for a lot of uncalled for things.

This list is what our minister gave regarding those with an unforgiving spirit:

  1. You will develop emotional problems.
  2. You will ruin your physical health.
  3. You will withdraw from God.
  4. The devil will harbor hatred in you heart.
  5. You will lose your soul.

On the Mayo Clinic website, there is an article which talks about the benefits of forgiving.

What are the benefits of forgiving someone?

Letting go of grudges and bitterness can make way for compassion, kindness and peace. Forgiveness can lead to:

  • Healthier relationships
  • Greater spiritual and psychological well-being
  • Less anxiety, stress and hostility
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Fewer symptoms of depression
  • Lower risk of alcohol and substance abuse

True forgiveness is possible.  Here’s how:

  1. Determine when you forgive, to let that issue go & do not raise that issue again. Expect occasional imperfections from people in your life.
  2. Ask the Lord for strength, to not take revenge.  God is the only One qualified & has the right to be in the vengeance department.  He is a righteous judge.  He tries to teach us- “I’ll do to you what you did to me” will never balance it’s self out. Try to learn this as early as possible.  It will save you much heartache.
  3. Remember those you have hurt.
  4. Rebuild the relationship.
  5. Pray for that person each day.
  6. Remember the cross of Christ.

If the hurtful event involved someone whose relationship you otherwise value, forgiveness can lead to reconciliation. This isn’t always the case, however. Reconciliation might be impossible if the offender has died or is unwilling to communicate with you. In other cases, reconciliation might not be appropriate. Still, forgiveness is possible — even if reconciliation isn’t.   See my blog “When God says forgiveness just isn’t enough”. It is a good lesson reminder on how just because you say you are sorry, does not guarantee the relationship will be put back together as it once was.

Always remember kindness is free.  If we are committing ourselves to kindness, then we will be less likely to be needing forgiveness.

Thank you for stopping by today.  I hope you are inspired to forgive, in some way.  I have to be going now, because I should be washing clothes!

 

When God says apologies are not enough

Sometimes being sorry, for faulting someone, is just not enough. Let me explain myself. When you are hurt by angry words or when someone treats you unfairly, an apology can do wonders. However, forgiveness does not always put everything back together like it was before. Many people may feel that they can treat others with hatred & discontent-but should be put right back in good graces once they breath an apology. While apologies & seeking forgiveness for wronging someone is essential to mending relationships, sin in any form is at a cost. And yes anger & lashing out at others is a sin.

Let’s consider what the Bible teaches-

Ephesians 4:26 says this:

“Be angry and do not sin. Do not let the sun go down on your wrath.”

On in verse 27 it says “ nor give place to the devil.”

Then on down in verse 31 the apostle Paul writes to the Ephesians,

“Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor and evil speaking be put away from you with all malice.”

What’s the cure for anger? Verse 32 says,

“And be kind to one another , tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.”

There is a price for sin & not listening to God’s teachings. Take for instance, one of the most remarkable men of the Bible- Moses. In Numbers 12:3, it states “Now the man Moses was very humble, more than all men who were on the face of the earth. Verse 7 of the same chapter indicates God saying Moses was faithful in all his house. Verse 8 says that God spoke to him face to face. God must have had a really high opinion of Moses. In Deuteronomy 34:10 it says But since then there was not arisen in Israel a prophet like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face.” Now, with all the wonderful things the Bible says about Moses, there was an incident that happened in Numbers 20 starting in verse 7, which God did not approve of.

Numbers 20:7 Then the Lord spoke to Moses saying v. 8 Take the rod; you and your brother Aaron gather the congregation together. Speak to the rock before their eyes, and it will yield its water; thus you shall bring water for them out of the rock, and give drink to the congregation and their animals.

Moses took the rod, as He had commanded. Moses & Aaron gathered the assembly together before the rock. Then for whatever reason instead of speaking to the rock, he struck the rock twice with the rod. And you know what happened after that? The water came out in abundance. Enough to give water to the congregation and their animals. It looked like everything went well, until the Lord had His say. If Moses did not think God would notice he disobeyed him, he found out pretty quickly, He was not amused. The Lord said in verse 12 to Moses & Aaron, “Because you did not believe Me to hallow Me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore, you shall not bring this assembly into the land which I have promised.”

Moses picked right back up & kept on following God. In Deuteronomy 3:23-25 he pleaded with the Lord to see the promised land. Even with the faithfulness & forgiveness He bestowed upon Moses, because of his sin, He would not go back on His word. Finally, the Lord got tired of his apologizing, & angrily responded in verse 26 to Moses“Enough of that! Speak no more to Me of this matter.”

Moses was a great leader of the Bible. He wrote five books of the Bible. He was the deliverer of the Lord’s commandments which is thus referred to as the Law of Moses. This Law was what Christ lived under. However, because of his sin, he was not granted the gift of entering the promised land. Sin can be forgiven, however there is responsibility for those sin. Take for example someone who is a prisoner in jail.  They may truly be sorry for the things they have done.  God can forgive them.  However, they still have time to serve.  Somethings can just not be regained after sin. Many times things cannot ever be as they were before. God will forgive. However, people need to consider the damage, that can be done to others, before letting the devil have his way with their actions & words.

I believe we should all make efforts to right our wrongs. Especially in relationships. However, we should not be surprised when saying you are sorry does not put everything back together again. This is why we should consider the long lasting detriment sin can have. Perhaps this will be enough help us to bridle our tongues & be watchful of what we do. As a southern girl we are groomed to be mindful of someone else’s feelings. I can remember my mama teaching me to not say this or that or do this or that. Why? Because it might hurt a person’s feelings. Let’s do our best to be kind & tenderhearted to one another. That way, we don’t have to worry about making apologies.

 

I appreciate so much you stopping by to visit with me. I have to be going for now, because I should be washing clothes……….