>Driving School Part 1

>I am home from my first 3 hour driving school class. It ended not so horrible…

I was fine for the drive down the mountain to class, was still good as I walked into the building. I was going to be a big girl. Then I turned the corner into the room. People! Lots of people. Standing in a line, well 2 lines actually. So I just jump in line and the woman in front of me informs this is the correct change line only. For once I was able to say, well I have correct change. So, whew, I do not have to change lines.

So now the butterflies are flopping as I stand there in this line among strangers and I am looking at the faces and the atmosphere in the room is one of ick. It’s not like a line at a concert or conference or sport ticket booth where everyone is excited and talking with each other (whether they know them or not) about how excited they are. It’s not even like waiting in the line at Wal-Mart or Target. It’s a line that no one wants to be in and no one wants to be seen in.
Then at this moment I am thinking about the great white throne judgment as people wait in line to pay their fine because they refused to accept Christ’s payment on their behalf…  Another moment where I am overwhelmed with the grace of my God.

So I finally make it to the front of the line and pay my class fee and then it’s time to find a seat. I have visions in my head of the day Forrest Gump got on the school bus the first time and heard “can’t sit here.” and “seats taken”. I scan the room and find an empty seat in the back and head to it with determination and turn to sit down and low and behold a face I recognize. So now the choice… pretend I did not see them and keep moving to another seat and hope they do not recognize that I was there… or stop and say hi and hope they offer me the seat next to them. I chose to stop and say hi and yes they did offer me the seat beside them.

So now we are filling out our information cards and then the panic comes that I will do it wrong and why yes I did… but it didn’t matter because I was called out in front of the entire room. So I am glad I did not try the duck and hide and head down approach earlier because my presence in that room was going to be made known.
The instructor asks, “do we have any level 2ers in here?” And my head goes down and my hand goes up… one of only three hands… and the others were in their part 2 phase. I was the only one here for part 1 of part 2. So he says “well ma’am let me see your paperwork. And you are filling out the wrong card. You need the blue one”. Now the instructor stands over me as I transfer my information to the right card and I almost forget how to sign my name.

Then this teenageish kid beside me goes “Whoa, what did you do to get level 2?!?”

Yeh…

Once the class finally got started it was actually quite informative. The instructor did not speak down to us and he tried to make it fun. During the course of the evening I learned some interesting facts. Here are some of them. Let me share my knowledge with you. After all these are highly paid for facts.

1) Alabama is ranked 5th in America for road rage fatalities
2) Alabama is ranked 2nd in America for fatality accidents per one thousand households
3) When you get pulled over and your licence is scanned the officer will know if you have traveled down I-10 because it is lined with cameras that constantly send info of tags to the government
4) Failure to yield to the right of way is the number one cause of accidents containing fatalities
5) One person every 8 hours and 15 minutes is killed in an automobile accident
6) Police officers for the first time in history are concerned for their jobs and ticket writing will increase in order for them to prove their worth to the county and state so drive carefully

I am thankful that driving school part 1 is now behind me… paying for our sin is just no fun at all.

>Speak Kindly

>So as I shared some of my overflow from my Sunday morning class I thought I would also share some of the overflow from my Sunday night class… Oh yes let me proclaim His excellencies!

On Sunday nights I currently am leading a Precept Upon Precept class from the book of Isaiah. This past Sunday we looked at Isaiah 40-41, the Lord has had me in Isaiah 40 for months. He just keeps pulling me back there to soak in His truth. And that is perfectly fine with me, Isaiah 40 is a wonderful place to be.

Isaiah 40 begins with “Comfort, O comfort My people“. You really cannot grasp the mercy in these words if you have not looked through and read the previous 39 chapters in Isaiah. In the first 39 chapters comfort is the last thing that the Lord is calling out for His people. You see they had already found themselves too comfortable as it was. So comfortable, that they had forgotten their God. They had forgotten His holiness. They somehow thought they were now above His law and no longer had to do more than go through the motions of religion and appease Him.
God, the Holy One of Israel, the Lord of hosts, then decides it is time to deal with his wayward children. The first 39 chapters sound very familiar as you read through them. You see it sounds just like our nation today. It sounds just like much of Christendom today. Read it sometime and see for yourself…

So the previous 39 chapters are filled with God revealing the wrath that He is going to bring on His rebellious children. Those who have forgotten that He is holy. Those who have forgotten that He is the Creator God, the One enthroned above the cherubim, the One who holds all the waters of the universe in the hollow of His hand, the One who breathes their very breath of life in their nostrils.

Oh friend, have you been there?
His child… yet somehow managing to forget how very big He is and forgetting that He is holy.

Then we turn to Isaiah 40 and we see how our loving Father will hand out His discipline, He will indeed remind us who He is, but then when the discipline is past, He gathers His children in His arms and tenderly holds them close to Him and says “Comfort, O comfort…” 

God then says, “Speak kindly to Jerusalem; and call out to her, that her warfare has ended, that her iniquity has been removed, that she has received of the LORD’s hand double for all her sins.” (Isaiah 40:2)

Not only does He forgive us, and cleanse us, and gather us into His arms, but he looks at the other children, those who did not stray in the way that we did, He looks at them and He says, now comfort, O comfort my child, speak kindly to this child of mine. Yes, she has received my discipline. She has paid double for her sins. She received it at My hand. She needs no more from you. You comfort. You speak kindly. She is My redeemed. She has repented. Her iniquity has been removed. I do not condemn her, neither are you to condemn her.

How merciful is our God.

I cannot even type this post that speaks of His mercy without tears brimming my eyes, because I know the great mercies He has shown me. I know the times I have fallen. I know the consequences I have endured from my sin. I know what He has forgiven… and not just forgiven, but chosen to take this broken vessel of clay and restore it, instead of trashing it. And then to take it, me, and use me to hold His righteousness, His holiness. To call me His treasure, to call me precious in His sight. Oh what do I know of this love?

I love this song I have added to this post, What Do I Know of Holy by Addison Road. It reminds me of myself, how just when I think I have a grasp on this Christian walk, just when I think I understand my God and I have Him “all figured out” He never fails to blow my mind and put me in my place and remind me that even after all eternity has passed I still will not have a full grasp of this God of everlasting endless love…

I know nothing of His holiness.
I just know I want to know.

Is He fire? Is He fury? Is He Sacred? Is He Beautiful?

Yes, yes He is…

>Mary’s Sweet Sixteen

>I am teaching through the book of Luke in our Sunday morning small group class. We are not even out of the first chapter yet and God has already overwhelmed me with Himself. He is such an amazing God. I love how God sends Gabriel to Zacharias with His message and how God picks up right where He left off 400 yrs before in Malachi. God has Gabriel speak to Zacharias as though He had just spoke through Malachi 4 days before not 400 years before.
Why shouldn’t He?
His word endures forever and it does not whither or fade and Zacharais was a priest, a man of the covenant and He was to remember the words of the covenant and to live them and teach them to others… so this message of God given through Malachi should have been right on the tip of Zacharias tongue and at the front of his mind as if it had of been spoken just 4 days before. 

As is should be with us… after all man does not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.

Then as we go further into the first chapter of Luke there is that wonderful message that Gabriel delivers to Mary as he is reminding her who her God is, “For nothing (not any word) will be impossible with God.” (Luke 1:37).

Once again words of truth that we should hold to, live by, and teach to others as though God just spoke them 2 days ago and not 2000 years ago… for His word endures forever.  

Then Elizabeth full of the Holy Spirit declared, “And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to her by the Lord.” (Luke 1:45)

How could Mary help but respond with praise?
I call Luke 1:46-55 Mary’s sweet sixteen. I call it this because in her prayer of praise she gives us sixteen amazing facts about our amazing God.
So here it is:

 Mary’s Sweet Sixteen
1) He is Lord
2) He is my Saviour
3) He has regard for the humble state of His bondslave
4)He is the Mighty One
5) He has done great things for me
6) His name is holy
7) His mercy is upon generation after generation toward those who fear Him
8) He has done mighty deeds with His arm
9) He has scattered those who were proud in the thoughts of their heart
10) He has brought down rulers from their thrones
11) He exalts those who were humble
12) He has filled the hungry with good things
13) He sends the rich away empty handed
14) He has given help to Israel His servant
15) He remembers His mercy
16) He keeps what He has spoken forever
I adore this prayer of praise. Just remembering one of these sixteen can keep my mind steadfast and in perfect peace because I know that He is faithful and His word endures forever. So as the dreaded Monday quickly approaches, I encourage you to begin your work week with Mary’s Sweet Sixteen and may you too be blessed because you have believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to you from the Lord…

>Things I Love Saturdays

>So I am sitting down for a coffee break after spending the afternoon doing a little housework. So what better time than this to blog for just a moment.

As I was looking through some of the blogs I am beginning to follow there was a link titled “Things I love Thursdays” You were to link up and share a thing you love.
(I don’t believe I linked up right or even commented right so sorry to my fellow blogger for my not so great an attempt. I am still so very new to all this blog stuff… and it’s Saturday not Thursday)  

I suppose my actual comment should have been under a “Things I love Saturdays” but I’ll love this on Thursday as well 🙂

So the thing I love this Saturday… the way my husband finds me sexy while in an old t-shirt and shorts with no make-up on and my hair all slicked back in a messy bun while I’m barefoot mopping the kitchen floor and smelling like Murphy’s Oil.

I suppose if I was still in my feminist movement mentality I would be offended by the comment of my husband as he made known his attraction to me at that moment. However, today I am not offended, indeed it made me actually quite giddy. He even received an immediate kiss of promise. Yes, I do love this man!

I do believe that it’s the little random moments like this that make a marriage work. They keep it alive and thriving and growing and just flat out fun 🙂

So the confession from this Christian housewife today… Yes, I apparently like my husband to think dirty while I’m cleaning.

Ladies, do we not want our husbands to desire us? I know I do. I want him to think of me as passionately as Solomon thought of his beautiful bride in the Song of Solomon. I want to hear him say to me “O my dove, in the clefts of the rock, in the secret place of the steep pathway, let me see your form, let me hear your voice; for your voice is sweet and your form is lovely.” (Song of Solomon 2:14)  I want to know that I have made his heart beat faster (Song 4:9).

What makes my husband mine is that I didn’t have to do a thing to receive this comment. I was just being me. The beautiful maiden in the Song of Solomon was spotted by her love as she was out doing what she did… herding goats.
She didn’t have to dress herself up to be noticed by him. And I didn’t have to dress myself up and make my face and do my hair to perfection to be noticed today by my love… he just loves me. All of me, “But my dove, my perfect one, is unique:” (Song 6:9). He loves me from the inside out (even if it might have began from the outside in). He spotted me as I was out just doing what I do.

Not that I do not dress myself up for my husband, because I do. As a matter of fact it is one of my most favorite things to do. I love to look beautiful for him, as did Solomon’s beautiful maiden, “How beautiful and how delightful you are, my love, with all your charms!” (Song 7:6) I want my husband to be proud to have me on his arm and I love to have him notice when I have put forth the effort to look my best for him.  

So husbands… if there are any still reading this… go whisper some Song of Solomon in your wife’s heart this Saturday 🙂

>Praying with Persistence or Shut Up and Trust

>How are we to know when to keep praying with persistence about the same thing or when to shut up and trust that God has heard us and move on?

As a parent I have kids who constantly are asking for stuff, to have stuff, to do stuff, to get stuff… always wanting stuff. My youngest who is seven at this time is dying for her own email account. We have told her to wait and we would set it up when we thought she was really able to handle one. However, even though we have already given her an answer which was to wait, she continues to constantly come to us and ask “But when?”
To which we have chosen to reply, “Every time you ask the time gets pushed back further.”

Hmmmmmm, now I wonder, is that my Father’s reply to me as well?

You see I ask for stuff, to have stuff, to do stuff, to get stuff… always stuff. It’s all reasonable stuff. Our house to sell. Foreign mission trips. Book sales. Ministry opportunities. Financial issues. Confirmations of prayers. You know good reasonable stuff.
And I have heard Him many times give me the answer, “Wait and I will give it to you when I know you are really able to handle it.”
However, I still find myself constantly coming to Him and asking, “But when?”

So I wonder is God looking at me and saying “Every time you ask the time gets pushed back further.”?

I try to justify my constant “But when’s” with the parable of the widow before the unrighteous judge in Luke 18:1-8, but my request are not going up before an unrighteous judge are they…

“Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not lose heart,” (Luke 18:1)

So how do we know when to be persistent in prayer and when to shut up and trust?

I’m still working on this one, but I think when the prayer is actually a whine… it’s probably time to shut up and trust. If I am whining, have I lost heart? Is a whine even really a prayer request? I tell my own children, “Excuse me, but I don’t understand whine language, when you can address me in english, we’ll talk.”

So if I am whining am I really trying to emotionally manipulate God? (Like that’s going to work!) Am I really just doubting that He heard me or is going to do what He said He would do? Is it that I am not trusting that He has my best interest in mind at all times? 

“will not God bring about about justice for His elect who cry to Him day and night, and will He delay long over them? I tell you that He will bring about justice for them quickly. However, when the Son of man comes, will He find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:7-8) 

God is not going to delay in answering my request, even if and especially if the answer is wait. He will bring about His will quickly, as He said He would. Did you know that this word “quickly” is showed as only being used seven times in the Bible by the NAS Greek Lexicon?  In Luke 18:8, Acts 12:7, 22:18, 25:4, Romans 16:20, and Revelation 1:1, 22:16. The word is tachos in the greek and it means quickness, speed.

Perhaps what God is telling us many times, is wait, and when I answer I will answer with quickness and speed. You will have no doubt that it is Me. No doubt that your prayer has been answered according to My will to accomplish My purpose in you. So My dear precious one, My beloved, when I come with My answer to your request, will I find you waiting in faith…

So are we to pray with persistence or shut up and trust?
I think the answer just might be both.
A little phrase that I have coined… “when in doubt, pray about”

However, maybe, NO WHINE LANGUAGE ALLOWED 🙂

This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. (1 John 5:14)

>Interpretations of Grease

>As I was spending time with a dear friend and sister in Christ this week we ended up on a discussion about music lyrics and movies. We were at a public place where random music was being played and a lot of that music was songs we listened to growing up and we would find ourselves singing the lyrics before we even realized it.

Then our girls would say “what’s that song” and we would then move into diverting them with a, “well it’s just an old song that was out when we were growing up.” And we would move on not really wanting to encourage them in learning the lyrics themselves. After all they’ve already got “Baby, Baby, Baby, Oooooh” stuck in their head. They don’t need “Shot to the heart and you’re to blame, baby you give love a bad name” added to their minds rolodex.

After the song lyric discussion it moved into the movie realm and the movie Grease came up. We both remember watching that movie as a child and loving it, I have to admit I still enjoy watching this movie.
What I recall as I watched this movie as a child was that I just focused on the fun of it. The catchy songs, the silly things that made me laugh, like the pies in the faces and the pink hair. I really never caught on to what the whole concept of the movie was about.

Then I watched it as an adult that was now deep in the study of the Word and was now focused on being holy as He is holy and being a slave to righteousness and not the slave to sin that once had me bound. I watched this movie with these new eyes in Christ and sat there with my mouth open in the “Oh my word!” expression.

As my friend and I discovered, this movie was horrible. The message of it, the lyrics of the songs, we both recalled the shock of discovering what we had really been singing. Wow!

The verse “Behold I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves.” (Matthew 10:16) comes to my mind.  

This movie takes this good, pure, wholesome young lady, everything that we are desiring our daughters to be, this young girl who stands strong through the ridicule of friends because of her goodness and then this movie brings her down and ends with a celebration of her degradation. The girl compromises her convictions, the truths in which she has been taught, in order to get the object her desire… a boy. She shows up at the end of the movie in tight black leather with a cigarette hanging out of bright red lips.

What hit me this morning in the shower is what the boy had showed up in at the very same ending…

When this young girl met her fellow, he was not with his peers. His personhood was not affected by the company he kept… he was himself. This is who the young girl gave her heart to. Then she meets him within his peers and he is different. However her affection for him has not changed, nor has his for her.

What happens when this young man lays eyes on this young lady again? Well first he becomes a confused fool, torn between what he wants and who he is supposed to be. The young girl refuses to be intimidated by him and stands her ground to not be less than who she is, no matter who makes fun of her. As we watch the movie we see this young man realize if he is to have the object of his desire, he must change. He begins to do so… little by little… he begins to become a man.

The problem… the young lady. Here in the end she grew tired of waiting and she compromised. She threw it all out the window in order to get what she wanted. She lowered her standards and now is pretending to be someone she is not in order to get what she wants.

However had she just waited, had she just continued to stand her ground, this young man was rising to the occasion. He was becoming a man in order to earn her trust, her respect.

The truth hidden in the songs and fun of Grease, the moral of the story you might say that I believe is written in between the lines maybe…

Young ladies wait.
If you will wait, he will rise.
Do not compromise what you know is right, stand firm, hold fast, if he loves you he will rise to meet your standard. His desire is to earn your respect.
Let him.

“Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary” (Galatians 6:9)

>The Challenge

>Yesterday was my first public pool/beach experience for this summer season. As we were packing up to go and I was choosing which swimsuit to wear the dilemma began and then came the challenge to myself. When I challenge myself it’s really not a challenge in my own strength, but more a challenge of faith. You see I am learning that everything in my life as a believer centers around faith. Not faith in faith, but faith in Christ and believing His word and displaying my belief through my obedience to it. Obedience is evidence of faith and faith is not faith until it is tested.

What on earth can test a woman’s faith more than a public pool?

The dilemma came as I was choosing what suit to wear:
Option 1: Somewhat modest bikini
Option 2: Not so modest bikini
Option 3: Tankini with skirted bottom

Rationalization of Options:
Option 1: Well it’s pretty modest and I could keep a tank top on
Option 2: Only wear this one at our family’s pool when just family will be there or with my husband by my side at the beach, but I do have some swim trunks now from VBS that will match the top, could wear the bikini top and shorts
Option 3: Would not get as much sun and will have a skirt tan line, but would not embarrass my girls or compromise the standard we have set for them in suit choosing and I would feel comfortable walking around in it

Okay, Option 3 is the winner.

Now on the way to the pool comes the challenge.

Oh Father, please help me to have a good time today. Help me not to compare myself to another woman here. Let me not make myself feel better or worse about my appearance by comparing myself to some other female. 

You see I have allowed my entire pool or beach experience to be ruined at times because I saw some other female with a figure that I thought I could in no way ever measure up to and God help my poor husband if he even looked in her general direction. I would spend the rest of the trip in fear that when he looked at or touched me he was wishing I was her.
Then there are the times that I have found myself scanning the vicinity comparing myself to those in the what I considered to be the less than perfect figure categoryy and saying to myself, “well I look better than her” and then allowing this to determine my confidence in myself.

“For we are not bold to class or compare ourselves with some of those who commend themselves; but when they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are without understanding. But we will not boast beyond our measure, but within the measure of the sphere which God apportioned to us as a measure, to reach even as far as you.” (2 Corinthians 10:12-13)

How dangerous it is for we as Christian women to determine our worth and confidence by comparing ourselves with each other and measuring ourselves by each other. Does not our society do that enough? I do not want my daughters to gain their confidence and worth by their outer appearance so I cannot do it myself. How dare I tear another person down in order to make me feel better about myself, even if I do it without their knowing it. The Lord looks at my heart. I want my heart to be pleasing to my God.
I also no longer want to measure myself by myself. I have learned that my mirror lies to me. I can look in it one morning and be pleased in what I see. Then not even a week later I can look in that very same mirror and all I can see is stretch marks, a bottom that’s just not what it used to be, legs with cellulite, arms that are now waving in a way that they never did when I was “raising the roof” ten years ago. I will leave the bathroom determined never to eat again and to work out 6 hrs a day until I look 21 again.

The only mirror I can trust is the mirror of God’s Word.   

The Word of God tells me that “All flesh is grass, and all its loveliness is like the flower of the field… The grass withers, the flower fades, but the Word of our God stands forever.” (Isaiah 40:6-8) How foolish is it of me to put my hope and confidence and worth in something that is not lasting. What determines somethings true value, even in our society, but that it is something that lasts. This flesh will not last. No matter how many protein shakes you drink, no matter the gym membership, no matter the surgeries, the loveliness of this flesh will fade so if I put my confidence in this withering fading flesh then my confidence, my worth, will wither and fade with it.

“for we are the true circumcision, who worship in the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh,” (Philippians 3:3)

So my challenge to myself was not to compare myself this day with another female in any way. My challenge was not to look at another woman and say “well, I used to look like that” or “good grief, I could never look like that” or “at least I don’t look like that.”
My challenge was to enjoy the day with my girls-> heart to heart not flesh to flesh.
My challenge was to show my girls that living a life of faith is trusting God to see you through every part of your life, even the public pool experience as a middle-aged happily married mom 🙂

Did the Lord help me meet this challenge? I can tell you with all honesty and confidence that yes He did. He did by giving me His Spirit to dwell in me and be my Helper and giving me the strength and authority in Christ to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:4-6)

“For the Lord will be your confidence…” (Proverbs 3:26) 

The Light

“We separate ourselves from Him sometimes, because we misunderstand His heart. We then feel like He is at a distance and we allow the lies of the enemy to pile on, which is an obvious tactic to push us further and further in the very direction that we want nothing to do with. It’s the bottomless pit of us and what we can do apart from Him…”  (Dara Maclean)

How many times have you fallen into this trap? I know that I have. God has promised that He would never leave us nor forsake us, but how often do we forsake Him because we assume He is through with us?

We have a basement at our church. This basement’s primary use at the moment is for a storm shelter and hell. Yes, hell is in our church basement, so come visit us anytime… Well it’s actually that we use the basement for the hell scene in our yearly drama called “The Judgment Seat” that we put on around Halloween for our community and anyone else who wants to come.

The basement is full of stuff as this requires a huge set-up. So anyway, as I was looking for stuff to prepare the stage for our VBS this past June I needed to go down the stairs to the basement. I go to flip on the light and it is out. There is no light to light the stairway so I have to feel my way in the dark down to the next level where there is another light. I do this several more times, up and down the stairs.

Then it’s like God whispers “Stop, I have something to teach you”

So I stop on the stairwell and it hits me. I realize that I could not see coming down the stairs, but I could see perfectly fine coming back up. I look up to the top of the stairs where I had left the door propped open to the light in the hallway. Then the verse, “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path” (Psalm 119:105) comes to my mind along with 1 John 1:5, “This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.”

What I realized at this moment was that whether I was going up or down the stairs the light in the hallway had not changed. The light remained the same, but it was my position to the light that determined whether or not I could see.

The very moment I turned my back on the light, after being in the light, I could not see clearly at all. I was almost blind in the darkness. The further away I went the less I could see and find my way. But, no matter how far down I descended, the moment I turned back toward the light I could clearly see my way back up to it.

I believe this is what God wanted to teach me.

There may be times in our lives that we find ourselves in darkness. It could be that we have for some reason turned our back to the Light, and it is true that after being in the Light, the darkness seems even more dark. We might have stumbled into this darkness. We might be deceived into this darkness. It doesn’t matter how we got there, the way out is the same. We have to find the Light and turn back to it. The very moment we do, the Light makes clear the way. Even the smallest glint of light can be a guide out of darkness.

We have to remember that the Light does not change. God does not change. He is the same today, yesterday, and forever. God does not change but it is our position to God that can change. When our back is to Him we cannot see, but when we turn our face to Him… then… when once we were blind, now we see.

What’s your position to Him today?

>Pew Hopping with Papaw

>Wow… yeh… another crazy night!

Let’s see at one point I am in the Hartselle, Al Kroger parking lot with my husband and  run into one of my mentor’s  as she’s skipping church to eat at the Asian Buffet…She just waves and grins and says, I just felt like Chinese. My husband and I look at each other as we now deliberate between church or Chinese… I don’t recall our answer because all of a sudden now I am shopping.

Yes I am shopping, but in my own clothes that are hanging in a store. All these clothes have been gifts by others, and there were too many to hold in my closet so I borrowed a mall’s store rack room and then forgot they were there. Then as I am out to the mall shopping I see the clothes and I say “Oooooo I like these, think I’ll look here.” Then after poking through them for a while, it hits me, “hey these are all mine already!” Then would you believe I can’t reach the top to get them off the hanger bar. It doesn’t matter how big the chair is that I pull up, I can never reach it. The salesperson walks up and says “may I help you?’ To which I reply, “No, I got it, thank you” And I continue to struggle on my own.
I am sure there is a very big point here in all this somewhere… 

The next thing I know I have to go to the bathroom. Some how a toilet or lack of toilet always shows up in my dreams… Well and then of course when I go to the bathroom and flush the toilet it begins to overflow. I watch in horror and yet at the same time thanking God it was only number one. Now all of a sudden that toilet is in the same room of the clothes I was shopping through… yes weird, and I am in another bathroom warning all the entering ladies not to use the toilet.

Now I walk out of the bathroom and see my husband and I realize he has been waiting at the dressing room the whole time while our little girls try on clothes, and he is ready to go, so we go…

And somehow now we are at my aunts home and out in the pasture playing on the hill and then my husband sees something and heads down and around the hill to which the kids chase after with a, “I wanna go too!” But He sends them back up and around the hill screaming as a big wolf comes running behind them.
I recall seeing the wolf and trying not to panic and then I try to appease the wolf and I am holding his paw in my hand and I remember feeling the wait of it, but at the same time fear is gripping my stomach as I try to stay calm for the sake of the children…

Then I turn and it’s not just one wolf, it’s bigfoot, it’s the white thang (you probably have never heard of the “white thang” but let me tell you he is one scary white thang, just let my grandmother tell you), monsters are at this point everywhere.

Then out of nowhere comes my Papaw Harris who went home to be with the Lord over 15 years ago.  Yes here he comes marching down the hill after these monsters wearing his Liberty overalls and carrying a big stick. So Patrick and my Papaw go after the wolf and bigfoot and the white thang… oh me, right?

The next thing I know I am standing at the front of a church with a death grip around my Papaw Harris’s waist hugging him as tight as I can with one arm and crying as I beg him not to waste anymore time chasing after those monsters, but to come with me. I have my other arm loaded down with clothes I think they might have been from my previous shopping excursion.

I remember holding on to him tight and saying, “Papaw, please, we aren’t promised tomorrow!” To which he replies by unwrapping my arm from his waste and grabbing my hand tightly and bursting through the church doors with a shout and jumping on the back pew and then he pulls me along with him as he shouts and I grin from ear to ear and laugh with joy at and with my Papaw as we pew hop all the way to the altar. He then sets me down on the front row as he takes the stage and then I wake up… I think… or maybe I just can’t recall anymore…

Once again I am sure there is a moral to this story. Some sort of deep intricate interpretation to these dreams. A Discovery Channel special in the making no doubt.
Yeh… right.
Let’s just say I apparently am no Joseph… 🙂

But to sum it all up in a quick nutshell…

None of us are promised tomorrow so don’t be off chasing monsters when you could be pew hopping with your Papaw!

>The Verdict

>So this housewife has spent the last few hours glued to the computer watching the defense’s closing arguments in the Casey Anthony murder trial. I have to admit that the defense’s arguments left me with a reasonable doubt and I believe at this point had I been on this jury I too would have said “not guilty”. Of course I have not watched the trial in full nor have I listened to the prosecutions closing arguments.

I am fully aware that my opinion holds no relevance to the case.

Many have spent today venting their frustration and indignation over this case. I don’t know if we will ever know what really happened to little Caylee. I have heard several assumptions. Many have their own idea and speculations all built around and from their own personal experiences with life. This is where most of us live.

As a friend’s facebook status said  “Please remember the absolute truth and promise of this: Ecclesiastes 12:14 ‘For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil'”

How thankful I am for the sovereignty of God. This is what we can know, God is the Judge of judges. He sees what we do not see. Nothing is hidden from His sight. Different life backgrounds and experiences do not help shape His opinions. He stands on truth. Justice is not blind to Him. It is always served.

This is where we should rest. This is where we can find peace. I also know that Caylee did not leave this earth without God’s permission. He alone holds the keys to life and death. This situation did not sneak up on Him.
I also know the blood of the slain calls up to God from the ground (Gen 4:10). The voices of the slain sit under His altar in the heavens and cry out for His vengeance (Rev 6:10). Matthew 18:10 lets us rest in the fact that even in her death, no matter how it came, Caylee was not alone, “See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven continually see the face of My Father who is in heaven.”

Now I have considered spending the next few hours listening to the closing arguments of the prosecution. You know… so I can pass my own judgment of the case… but God didn’t ask me to sit in this court. Instead of spending more time trying to decide whether or not I believe the verdict was correct in my opinion according to the evidence presented at trial, I think I will pray that God’s will be accomplished.

The truth is when we live our lives apart from the will of God, there is no limit to our sin. There is not a one of us, if not submitted to the will of the Father, if not putting to death the deeds of the flesh, that could not be sitting in her chair. When the enemy has free reign in our minds and complete control of our emotions and thoughts. When we are a slave to sin… “being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful,…” (Rom 1:29-31)

But for the grace of God there go I…

 

The writing and teachings of Nicole Love Halbrooks Vaughn