It is GOD who BLESSES and TRANSFORMS...

This is a blog for women who:

(1) Desire to be transformed by JESUS' LOVE, HOLINESS, AND GRACE; (2) Believe that GOD'S WORD is the true Spirit food for HIS HOLY SPIRIT who lives within us; (3) Submit to GOD and walk this journey of life with HIM transforming us more and more into HIS likeness.

It's a blog about the POWER OF TRANSFORMED LIVES. Let's begin with yours and mine and pass it on... 1 + 1 + 1...

Since God's Holy Spirit lives inside a christian, let's choose to be nurtured and transformed by feasting daily on Holy Spirit food - God's Word - The Holy Bible..

Once in a while I take a hiatus from writing, but I have begun again on Easter Sunday 2013. Usually, there will be multiple blog postings each week. You are invited to use it as part of your daily quiet time. Topics may run for several months at a time. The current topic is posted over on the right side bar. Each week, I will try to connect to a song or two that goes with our current topic.

Each day of the week follows a special format: Sunday in the Son; Meditation Monday; GratiTuesday; Women in the Word Wednesday; Transforming Thursday; Family Fellowship Friday; and, Ketchup and Mustard Saturday.

There's a whole lot here! Take your time to browse. Please come back and visit often. Welcome!

Because of Jesus, we can be family,

Patti



TRANSFORMED MOMS:MOMS TRANSFORMED

Romans 12:1-2 "Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect."

Sunday, November 30, 2008

LEGACY OF LOVE

SUNDAY IN THE SON
Would you join me this week in beginning the journey of impressing the following scripture deep within our hearts? Your heart! My heart!

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Let's read together these foundational words to life and love! Love for GOD must start with you and me. Too often I have focused on the words "teach them" instead of the words "these words...shall be on your heart...".

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Please note what I have put in bold the words that we must focus on: "...these words... shall be on your heart...".

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Let's let these words deeply guide our

LEGACY OF LOVE!

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Deuteronomy 6:4-9
4 "Hear, O Israel!
The LORD is our God,
the LORD is one!
5 "And you shall love the LORD your God
with all your heart
and with all your soul
and with all your might.
6 And these words,
which I am commanding you today,
shall be on your heart;
7 and you shall teach them diligently to your sons
and shall talk of them when you sit in your house
and when you walk by the way
and when you lie down
and when you rise up.
8 And you shall bind them as a sign on your hand
and they shall be as frontals on your forehead.
9 And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house
and on your gates. "

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Be sure and pause the playlist before pushing play on the video below:




LEGACY by Nicole Nordeman
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LEGACY lyrics by Nicole Nordeman
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Verse 1:
I don't mind if you've got something nice to say about me
And I enjoy an accolade like the rest
You could take my picture and hang it in a gallery
Of all who's who and so-n-so's
that used to be the best At such'n'such ...
it wouldn't matter much
I won't lie, it feels alright to see your name in lights
We all need an 'Atta boy' or 'Atta girl'
But in the end I'd like to hang my hat on more besides
The temporary trappings of this world.
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CHORUS:
I want to leave a legacy
How will they remember me?
Did I choose to love?
Did I point to You enough
To make a mark on things?
I want to leave an offering-
A child of mercy and grace
who blessed Your name unapologetically
And leave that kind of legacy.
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Verse 2:
I don't have to look too far or too long awhile
To make a lengthy list of all that I enjoy
It's an accumulating trinket and a treasure pile
Where moth and rust, thieves and such
will soon enough destroy.
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SING CHORUS AGAIN
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Verse 3:
Not well traveled, not well read,
not well-to-do or well bred
Just want to hear instead,
"Well Done" good and faithful one...
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SING CHORUS AGAIN
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Saturday, November 29, 2008

THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: REMEMBERING AND ENCOURAGING

KETCHUP AND MUSTARD SATURDAY


This bottle reminds me alot of Steve and me,

two very different individuals who almost 35 years ago

made a committment to live as one.

We still remain very different

but those who know us know -

"you can't have one without the other!"
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KETCHUP - (Catch Up)


1. As I wrote the above, I began to laugh...not exactly because of what I wrote, but because I've been trying to think of a song all week that I heard my Mom sing when I was with her a few weeks ago. When I talked to her on the phone the other day, I told her that I was trying to remember the song that she had been singing. I knew that it was probably not going to happen because of her Alzheimer's but she said, "Oh, I know..." and began to sing, "On top of Old Smokey..." That was not the song that she had sung earlier but that song did just come to me. It was, "Love and marriage, love and marriage, go together like a horse and carriage....you can't have one without the other..." (Isn't that what I said above about Steve and me?)

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2. This week, I have loved our theme and theme song: THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS! I know many of you have emailed me, talked to me in person, or called to say that the whole idea of looking at love as a love that keeps on loving in spite of our circumstances is so helpful. I know that quite a few of you have not been on line in the last couple days, so if you haven't, I hope you can take some time to "catch up" on the posts from the last few days.

  • SUNDAY: THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS
  • MONDAY: THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: Love Doesn't Leave!
  • TUESDAY: THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: Gratitude in Spite of the Circumstances!
  • TUESDAY - PART TWO: THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: It's a Girl!
  • WEDNESDAY: THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: I AM!
  • THURSDAY: THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: GOD!
  • FRIDAY: THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: I Don't Wanna' but I'm a Gonna!

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3. If you REMEMBER, I featured a new song almost everyday in the month of August. We talked about them and were ENCOURAGED by them in our Master Full Moms class discussions on Tuesdays. Then, from September until now, I chose to use one a week as a theme song. I plan to continue to do that over the next few months. I will also use some of those that were briefly introduced in August for weekly themes in the future. I have placed all the songs that were our theme songs from September on on the playlist except for two that I could not find. Also, on the playlist are the songs that I plan to use throughout the rest of 2008. Enjoy! You can keep all 21 songs playing non-stop as you work around the house.
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4. One of the things that I emphasized in class last Sunday morning was the importance of giving COURAGE to one another. How does one give the type of COURAGE to a friend or family member to face a new day, to keep one foot in front of the other, or to just hang on by the fingernails??????..........It's called ENCOURAGEMENT....helping to put COURAGE IN another human being. The Bible has plenty to say about it! The only way that I know to "Catch Up" on this is to talk about it more. So, for the next few weeks as we enter the Christmas season (which is a very difficult time for so many), we will keep talking about the kind of LOVE THAT GIVES COURAGE. It is a love that I am still learning! Please come back and join in!
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5. Also, in class on Sunday, I had Mary Lea hold up a quilt that my maternal grandmother and her mother-in-law (my great grandmother) made together out of their house dresses. The backing of the quilt was facing the class and we talked about what the quilt might actually look like. That our perspective was different than those looking from the other side. It reminds us that people see things from different perspectives. Also, GOD'S perspective is often much different from ours. This quilt now hangs in our dining room. Here it is hanging behind our family in our Texas living room - December of 1990.In our Sunday class, I then read the poem THE WEAVER that has encouraged me immensely over the years. I promised Andrea that I would post it here today:


THE WEAVER

My life is but a weaving

Between the LORD and me.
I cannot choose the colors

He worketh steadily.

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Ofttimes He weaveth sorrow,

And I in foolish pride,

Forget He sees the upper

And I, the underside.

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Not til the loom is silent

And the shuttles cease to fly

Shall God unroll the canvas

And explain the reason why.

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The dark threads are as needful

In the Weaver's skillful hand

As the threads of gold and silver

In the pattern He has planned.


Author Unknown

6. Today, join me in praying for COURAGE for:

  • Leann and her job situation

  • Sherry and her new hands and leg

  • Katherine and her continued recovery from surgery

  • Carla and Sherwin with their move and his parents coming over from the Philippines

  • Tanya and her multiple health challenges

  • Sandy and her grief through the holidays

  • Sandy, Tim, Kristi, and Danny in their new christian walk

  • You who have children with special needs

  • My daughter, Jessica and her chronic pain and her future

  • My mom, Kathleen and her Alzheimers

  • Our teenage and young adult sons and daughters for their futures

  • Our many friends and relatives who are physically and/or spiritually sick and overcome with fears.

  • Brenda's brothers, Brian and Brandon (Iraq/Japan) and Brenda and Matt's future

  • Dave's job situation

  • You who are pregnant and have new life growing within you

  • Each transformed Mom who reads this for the COURAGE to come to Jesus just as we are and pour it all out at His feet...

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MUSTARD (Must Do!)


It's important to remember special days and family traditions. Today is one! Today is Steve's HALF BIRTHDAY! Yes, we celebrate half birthdays! We try to respect the wishes of the person on his/her half birthday. So, recognizing that Steve's introverted self is in the limelight alot and full of people ministry...hopefully, today will be a quiet day to help him recharge his batteries. His half birthday celebration started last night with a few of Steve's favorite things: two westerns for his reading enjoyment...one for last night and one for today...one of his favorite meals last night and another one today. And, of course, down time....quiet time...time for reflection... meditation... In the past, I've even sent him away to a cabin for the day, but there's plenty quiet right here at home with only the three of us. Oh, BTW, if you try to call him, I've turned off his cell phone! HAPPY HALF BIRTHDAY, STEPHEN CHARLES!

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If you'd like to leave a comment full of words of ENCOURAGEMENT for Steve here, that would be awesome. I'll give them to him at the end of the day!

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Friday, November 28, 2008

THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: I DON'T WANNA BUT I'M A GONNA!





We've never made a habit of doing BLACK FRIDAY as a family fellowship time, yet I know that some families do. Last year was the closest, when we all met at Jordan and Jacqueline's in Chicago for our "Thanksmas". We did the early morning thing on Friday. Not much though, we went to Staples!
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My husband, Steve, has a saying that our family has become used to over the years:
"I DON'T WANNA' BUT I'M A GONNA!"
He started using it as a modern day expression of Jesus' words: "Not my will but Thine be done!"
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I'm a people person and having only the three of us here yesterday for Thanksgiving was harder than I thought. I basically told Jessica and Steve, "I don't wanna' but I'm a gonna!" I certainly wanted us to stay here with Jessica who suffers from chronic migraines. I was thrilled that she had a very good day yesterday. Yet, Jessica knew something was wrong! She asked, "What's wrong, Mom?" I just missed THE CROWD: all our kids, the cousins, extended family...loud and noisy game playing...singing... Yet, I am SO THANKFUL that yesterday Jessica had a very good day!
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I'm thankful for all the Thanksgivings that Jessica was pain free before she began her battle with pain about 13 years ago. I found three pics to remind me of earlier Thanksgivings:
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THANKSGIVING 1987,
we traveled to Crystal City, Missouri
to be with my extended family.
Some of the Klein/Sikes cousins bed down for the night
on Granny's living room floor...

THANKSGIVING 1988,
we're at home in Nebraska around our kitchen table
wearing our paper plate pilgrim hats.
Our little Pilgrims and Indians made from styrofoam cups
sit in the middle of the table.


THANKSGIVING 1990, at home in Texas
with our Texas cousins coming our way.
Caleb made sure the cousins joined in to play "dress up".

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On Tuesday, when I shared some things that my young adult children have "treasured in their hearts", one that Jessica told me that was not written down was: "Mom, we knew that you weren't really an animal person and you went the extra mile to let us have animals." Jessica is so right! I just said, "I don't wanna' but I'm a gonna'!"
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Our first pet was a fish when Jordan was born. We still lived in an apartment. Here is Jordan at age 2, the first week of living in our new house and having his very first dog FUNNY GUY. FUNNY GUY was a huskie and beagle mix who had one blue eye and one brown eye.


Jordan was pretty rough with FUNNY GUY,
so FUNNY GUY decided that turn about was fair play!


Here are a few more pics that I found of the kids and some of their animals. Although I'm sure that they're somewhere, I did not find pics of:

  • Dogs: Mozart, Prince, Levi
  • Turtles
  • Frogs and Toads
  • Many fish
  • Chicken

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FIRST BATCH OF KITTENS:



Our kittens and puppy, DOLPHIN,

grew up liking each other.
Jordan loved DOLPHINS,
the MIAMI DOLPHINS,

and anything that would wear the name DOLPHIN...





FUNNY GUY 2:

Here is new puppy FUNNY GUY 2,

who came to live with us after FUNNY GUY 1 died...



We moved to Texas,

taking our dog WHITE SOX with us...
It wasn't long until we had MOZART (not pictured)

and COUSIN

who Jordan is holding here.

I've said before how much our kids love their cousins.

So, why not name our dog COUSIN!?!?




IN TEXAS,

CRYSTAL AND OUR CATS HANG OUT TOGETHER:




JESSICA'S HAMSTER, LANDSLIDE,

MADE ME REPEAT MY WORDS

OVER AND OVER-
"I don't wanna' but I'm a gonna'!

I don't wanna but I'm a gonna'!
I don't wanna but I'm a gonna'!"


CALEB HOLDS ONE OF OUR RABBITS HERE...

IT REMINDS ME OF ONE EASTER MORNING
WAKING UP TO MANY BABY BUNNIES:




THEN, THERE WERE PAPA SIKES' HORSES TO RIDE:



Oh, I did mention the pet chicken! Crystal's first grade class watched the process of baby chicks being hatched from eggs as a science experiment. A classroom drawing was held to give away those chicks that had thrived. Have you ever thought about the difference between having a sweet baby chick as a pet who one day turns into a rooster?!?!?! Oh, my!

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Oh, yes, then during their teen years,

two of our kids battled chronic illness,

so Jessica got MADDIE and

Caleb got JOSIE...





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Although, we loved both dogs dearly, they soon had to go. Jessica developed allergies to Maddie and Josie needed to be out on somebody's farm herding sheep.Our kids have treasured memories of all their animal friends. I am thankful, I chose to allow for them in spite of my basic feelings of "I don't wanna..."

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What's your FAMILY FELLOWSHIP memory

to share with us today?!?!?



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Thursday, November 27, 2008

THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: GOD

TRANSFORMING THURSDAY


Aw, c'mon sista...don't be like this turkey!

Of course transformation requires death!

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It's not so bad when the transformer is your Daddy...

and He's all LOVE!

I am so thankful for my loving Father, GOD!

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"GOD is love,

and the one who abides in love

abides in GOD,

and GOD abides in him."
John 14:6

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I'm so thankful for you and your seeking heart!

May you find this LOVE LETTER FROM GOD

just what you need today!

Be sure and pause the Playlist songs

before pushing play on the video.

This might be one you want to share with

your family today!


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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: I AM

WOMEN IN THE WORD WEDNESDAY



After, I shared yesterday about our difficult circumstances during our child raising years and our children's "treasured moments" of gratitude, I was blessed exponentially to be able to make a second post to announce that Jacqueline does have our grand daughter growing within her. The ultra sound confirmed it! God is our wonderful CREATOR!
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I have shared with you before how important the names of GOD / JESUS are to my family and me. Yesterday, Crystal was riding with friends (from college in Detroit) to Chicago where she is to spend Thanksgiving with Jordan and Jacqueline. Following a faulty GPS system, the driver took them to north of Indianapolis before realizing how off course they really were. At 15 minutes before midnight I finally got the call that Crystal had arrived safely at her original destination 5-6 hours later than planned. I am so thankful that I don't have to doubt the directions when JESUS says, "I AM THE WAY and THE TRUTH and THE LIFE"...

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This morning, Steve is speaking at a 7 a.m. Memorial Service to about 60 nurses, doctors, and co-workers of our young friend Marcel at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia. Someone from the hospital came up to Steve after Marcel's funeral on Monday asking him to do this for them. Marcel, a 24 year old pre-med student, died last Wednesday of an apparent blood clot. As I sit here at the computer and see Steve's notes. The characteristics / names of GOD stand out to me once again. Here is what I am reading:

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God is a servant! God is a giver! God is a kin-keeper!


God is a hard worker;

responsible;

a fighter for us;

our protector, provider, promoter!


I believe we were attracted to Marcel because

we saw a lot of these God characteristics in him!

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John 6-19 is full of I AM statements about JESUS (GOD and JESUS being ONE):

  • I AM the Bread of Life
  • I AM the Living Bread
  • I AM from God
  • I AM the Light of the World
  • I AM the Door of the Sheep
  • I AM the Good Shepherd
  • I AM the Son of God
  • I AM the Resurrection and The Life
  • I AM Teacher and LORD
  • I AM the Way, the Truth, and the Life
  • I AM the True Vine
  • I AM a King – for this I have been born
  • I AM King of the Jews

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Please watch this powerful Nicole Nordeman song/video below as you connect it with our theme song this week, the posts of the last several days about love and family, and the above scriptures. May they encourage you on your transformation journey!






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See past post on NAMES OF JESUS here: http://momstransformed.blogspot.com/2008/11/more-like-you-jesus-i-can-see-how.html

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: IT'S A GIRL!

GRATITUESDAY - PART 2:
GRAND DAUGHTER ON THE WAY!






Psalms 139:14-16
I will give thanks to Thee,
for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Thy works,
And my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from Thee,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth.
16 Thine eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Thy book they were all written,
The days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them."




This is my second post today. I'm sure you can understand why - especially if you've read my first post. Our son, Jordan and his wife Jacqueline found out this afternoon that they're having a baby girl. Read all about it here.

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THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: GRATITUDE IN SPITE OF THE CIRCUMSTANCES


Romans 5:2-6 says,
"We exult in hope of the glory of God.
3 And not only this,
but we also exult in our tribulations,
knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance;
4 and perseverance, proven character;
and proven character, hope;
5 and hope does not disappoint,
because the love of God has been poured out
within our hearts
through the Holy Spirit who was given to us."
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This week I am focusing on the love it takes to get through really hard times. Before I share with you my thoughts for today, let's re-cap:


  1. SUNDAY IN THE SON'S POST: The words to the song: That's What Love Is and the incredible videoes of the Hoyt father / son team who show that LOVE ALWAYS PERSEVERES!
  2. SUNDAY MORNING'S TREASURED IN MY HEART CLASS: For those of you who weren't in this class because just maybe you live on the other side of the world or the USA...I shared that there were so many times while raising my children that I just hung on by my fingernails...yet, believed with mustard seed faith that GOD would make a way as I prayed for WISDOM and focused on JESUS' words: John 5:19-20 "Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself..." John 5:30 "I can do nothing on My own initiative. “ John 15:5-6 …”for apart from Me you can do nothing. “ Luke 23:34 "Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing." LOVE ALWAYS PERSEVERES!
  3. MEDITATION MONDAY'S POST: I shared a powerful scripture from my husband Steve's sermon in a series of Hope and Comfort from the book of Isaiah: LOVE ALWAYS HOPES! Then, there is also the video of David Phelps singing our theme song That's What Love Is and the powerful way he sings: "love is in the not letting go..." You'll learn why his Dad and Mom were the inspiration that caused him to write it. LOVE NEVER LEAVES!
  4. TODAY'S GRATITUESDAY POST: I want you to know that in spite of so many not so great circumstances, love still reigns in our family. It was GOD'S love that got us through AND is still getting us through! LOVE BEARS ALL THINGS!

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Here are just a few of the "circumstances" that our family has experienced since my first pregnancy until now:

  1. miscarriages
  2. major pregnancy and delivery complications
  3. congenital disorders
  4. children's hospitals in several different states
  5. surgeries
  6. severe allergies (includng one child being allergic to our town's water then moved to a new town and a different child became allergic to our house)
  7. special diets
  8. toddlers with eyeglasses
  9. deaths of 4 close friends in tragic car wreck
  10. ADD/ADHD
  11. emergency rooms
  12. hospitalizations
  13. poison control
  14. near drowning
  15. "encephalitis"
  16. broken back's ongoing problems
  17. homeschooling
  18. month's money ran out before month ran out
  19. both parents needing to work full time
  20. discouraged by words and actions of christian friends
  21. more surgeries
  22. more disorders
  23. job loss
  24. moving six times
  25. near bankruptcy
  26. chronic pain: 24/7 migraines for 13 years, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue
  27. supra-ventricular tachycardia
  28. bi-polar
  29. death of friends and family members
  30. running away
  31. weariness
  32. teen car wrecks
  33. depression
  34. anger with GOD
  35. extreme discouragement...losing faith?!?!?

GOD are you there?...

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Here's the GOOD NEWS...

In spite of our circumstances,

GOD never left!

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There's always something to be thankful for in spite of it all. So, I recently asked our four young adult children to share some Treasures in their Hearts that they were really thankful for in spite of all "the stuff" that went on. Each of them shared five things. I will list most of them below and more on my post for FAMILY FELLOWSHIP FRIDAY.

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I am grateful that they are grateful! I am grateful that GOD is in control! Here's what they said:

  • Love was modeled verbally and non-verbally.

  • One of our family songs: "I'm gonna hide God's Word in My Heart; It's a lamp unto my feet. I'm gonna read God's word everyday. It's my food, my bread, my meat. I'm gonna stand on the truth of the Bible. I'm gonna open my eyes; I'm gonna memorize."

  • Compromising Punishment - I can remember mom and dad allowing me to share what I thought was a reasonable punishment for wrongful actions. I put down a few possible punishments that fit the crime, and they put down a few. Then, I crossed one out and they crossed one out. Eventually, we came to the punishment that was given.

  • Prom interrogation of Dad to my date!

  • Dad and Mom taught us to think for ourselves. They are teachers and I enjoyed being in their classes…I loved Dad’s sermons (when I wasn’t sleeping).

  • They asked us our opinions...I can remember Dad sitting me down when I was about 5 and talking to me about the pros and cons of moving to Texas.

  • They told us the truth about things especially Santa Claus. I’ve always felt that to be foundational for trusting.

  • Working with mom!

  • Although I didn't want to hear it everyday like I did, living with Sister Wisdom and praying for wisdom has helped me to continue to open up to God and seek out wisdom daily.

  • Although I didn't want the ABC's of Proverbs everyday in the car on my way to High School, looking back I can see how much Dad cared about me to instill in me scripture that would help me be victorious.

  • Zerberts!

  • You instilled in us to always try to do the right thing even when it seemed too hard. ..like the contract in our hallway that we all signed that said we would obey without complaining or arguing even if it seemed too hard.

  • Sitting on Dad's lap!

  • Dad and Mom were involved in my sports. Mom was president of the Little Dribblers Association. Dad coached me in baseball, basketball, and punt pass and kick. We even went to Nationals for the International Father / Son Shoot Out free throw contest.. Dad was totally impartial and fair to everyone as a coach and umpire even when I was involved. I vividly remember Dad saying as the umpire, "Strike three! You're out! Way to go, son!" I didn't appreciate it then but I do now.

  • Dad's fried potatoes!

  • You allowed for and even encouraged my creativity by letting me have "pillow land" and a big hamper full of boy dress-up clothes: the armor of God, Tarzan, Superman, Cowboys and Indians.

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1 Corinthians 13:4-8

Love is patient,

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love is kind...

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...rejoices with the truth

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bears all things

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believes all things

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hopes all things

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endures all things.

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Love never fails..."

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Monday, November 24, 2008

THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS: LOVE DOESN'T LEAVE!


MEDITATION MONDAY

I recently watched an interview with David Phelps, his two sisters, and their parents. They talked about how growing up their mom "drove them crazy." One day, on a family trip to Houston, their mom got out of the car to walk the rest of the way. One of the girls said, "Dad why don't you just leave her?" Their Dad's response and his unrelenting love for their mother eventually led to Mom's transformation and the song that David wrote. That song is our theme this week: THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS! You will see the last seconds of that Phelps family interview at the beginning of the music video below. You can also note that David's sister is his backup singer. What was their Dad's answer to his daughter's question?

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He responded, "Love doesn't leave!"

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As we meditate on the powerful thoughts of this song, I'd like to connect it with yesterday. In our series on COMFORT AND HOPE FROM ISAIAH, Steve shared this scripture powerfully with us:

Isaiah 43:2-5

"When you pass through the waters,

I will be with you;

And through the rivers,

they will not overflow you.

When you walk through the fire,

you will not be scorched,

Nor will the flame burn you.

3 "For I am the LORD your God,

The Holy One of Israel,

your Savior...

4...I love you...

5...Do not fear, for I am with you..."

We sang the Gaither's song, BECAUSE HE LIVES, I CAN FACE TOMORROW. Once again, I saw the Spirit interweaving our Bible class lesson with the sermon for a powerful one, two punch at our hearts.

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I had originally planned to lead the song BECAUSE HE LIVES in our ladies class. The night before, I heard that we would be singing it during the worship service...so I knew the Spirit was already at work. I have shared with you before that this song has been the song that has sustained me for years as we raised our children. It was no less powerful yesterday!

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My goal in speaking yesterday, in our TREASURED IN MY HEART class was simple, yet so complex:

Perseverance!

Dependence!

Unconditional love!

A love that never fails!

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I treasure in my heart all the people in my family story:

  • who did not give up on the LORD or each other...
  • who refuse to give up on the LORD or each other...
  • who, if they have given up they've changed their minds and returned to the LORD and each other!
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Please come back each day this week to take a look at some things that I shared in class yesterday morning or did not have time to share in class yesterday morning and will share with you this week.

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Raising kids is tough no matter how you slice it, but especially when you have challenges that are not within the norm. Our family has had many physical, intellectual, relational, emotional, and spiritual challenges over the years. In the darkness of the valleys, it was only the LORD that saw us through.

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On yesterdays post, I shared 4 video clip versions of the same story that has inspired me to keep putting one foot in front of the other. It is a treasure beyond measure!

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Perseverance!

Dependence!

Unconditional love!

A love that never fails!

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Sunday, November 23, 2008

THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS


SUNDAY IN THE SON


If you were in my TREASURED IN MY HEART class this morning,

I did not get to this song...although I did share the concept:

"Hang on...even if it's just with your fingernails...

never, never, never give up!"

The first song on our playlist is this week's theme.

The playlist plays only part of the song

and I have that part made bold below:

THAT'S WHAT LOVE IS


by: David Phelps


1.
It’s the only thing worth life and death.
It’s the first moment and the final breath.

It’s a broken heart keeping a solemn vow

And a lost soul being found.

You pray for faith when it’s hard to believe.

You choose to stay when it’s easy to leave

And when hope is gone

you’re the one who keeps holding on.


CHORUS:


That’s what love is

When you give until there’s nothing left

And it makes you give the very best.

That’s what love is.

It can make you laugh and make you cry.
It can let you down and lift you up so high

When you find the only reason left to live.

That’s what love is.


2

It’s the dream you give up for someone else.
It’s being strong whenyou’re weak yourself
Though it tears you up you trust again.

Hatred loses and forgiveness wins.

You turn your cheek when you want to fight.

Sell all you have and lay down your life
And when hope is gone

you’re the one who keeps holding on.


SING CHORUS AGAIN


It’s reaching out and holding on

so someone else will know.
Love is in the not letting go.



SING CHORUS AGAIN






THIS IS THE WEEK OF THANKSGIVING...



A time in the United States of America
that we set aside to focus on thanksgiving.
GOD set aside SONDAY for us to focus on
THANKSGIVING FOR JESUS CHRIST.

.

There is no greater thanksgiving
than to thank GOD for the love
that He has lavished on us.

.

My thanksgiving gift to you is the following
scriptures and videoes about a father's love.
You may not have time for it all now but when you do,
it will be a treasure beyond measure.
To get the fullest story, start with the first and watch all four.
Can only do one? Watch the last one!



John 5:19-20
19 Jesus therefore answered and was saying to them,
"Truly, truly, I say to you,

the Son can do nothing of Himself,
unless it is something He sees the Father doing;

for whatever the Father does,

these things the Son also does in like manner.
20 "For the Father loves the Son,
and shows Him all things that He Himself is doing;

and greater works than these will He show Him,

that you may marvel."

.
.
John 5:30
"I can do nothing on My own initiative."

.
John 15:5-14

"I am the vine, you are the branches;
he who abides in Me, and I in him,

he bears much fruit;


for apart from Me you can do nothing.

12 "This is My commandment,
that you love one another,
just as I have loved you.
13 "Greater love has no one than this,
that one lay down his life for his friends.












Saturday, November 22, 2008

PEOPLE NEED THE LORD: OTHERWISE LIFE IS A TERMINAL MESS!


"CLEAN UP ON AISLE 13!"
Who spilled the Ketchup and Mustard
all over the aisle?
.
Life can be such a mess!
.
Life can be: so full of questions... so full of challenges... so full of misunderstandings... so full of disagreements... so devastating!
.
.
What do people do who don't have the LORD?!?!?!!!
  • He's the great CLEANER UPPER!
  • He's the PEACE WHEN THERE IS NO PEACE
  • He's the ROCK TO STAND ON when the waves are 8 feet high!
  • He's the PROVISION when there is no money, no food, no shelter!
  • He's the GREAT PHYSICIAN when there is no health!
  • He's the FRIEND in the midst of broken relationships!
.
.
It's been a really rough week!
For some of you much more than me.
I have experienced a lot of the things
mentioned above this week.
I know without a doubt
that I would have laid down the towel
if I did not have the LORD.
.
As Steve and I sat in Steve and Karelle's living room and talked with them about Marcel's death, Karelle shared with us a song that is ministering to them. As I have listened to this song over and over in the last 48 hours it has ministered to me, too.
.
I am convinced that I need to share this with you.
Some of you have already faced job cuts...
some of you suspect that they are
just around the bend...
.
Others of you are facing:
loosing your home...
chronic pain...
cancer...
betrayal by a loved one...
overwhelming sadness...
severe anxiety...
stress, stress, stress...

.

This song reminds us once again how much

PEOPLE NEED THE LORD!

.

The first one minute 35 seconds of the video clip are words. If you don't have time to read the words, then just drag the little dot over to 1:35 and start there. Be sure and pause the playlist songs before pushing play on the video!

Be Blessed!

BEFORE THE DAY SLIPS AWAY
by Newsong
.
Verse 1:
Last night while I was sleeping,
You were watching over me
While I dreamt about tomorrow,
You knew my every need.
Now another day is waiting
For me to make it through
There's no way that I could face it without You!
CHORUS:
Before the day slips away,
I want to stop and say I love You, I love You.
Before the world rushes in again
I want to stop and say,
There is none above You
There is none above You
I'll just be still and know that You are God.
Be still and know that You are God.
VERSE 2:
There is something about the morning,
The stillness of it all
That calls my heart to hear You,
When You gently call
Now another day is waiting,
For me to make it through
There's no way I could face it without You
SING CHORUS AGAIN
Here I am in Your presence,
Where I long to be
Alone with You in the silence
Rain down Your love and Your mercy.
Whisper softly...to me..........................
Before the day slips away
I want to stop and say I love you, I love you
Before the day slips away
I want to stop and say I love you, I love you

SING CHORUS AGAIN

Friday, November 21, 2008

PEOPLE NEED THE LORD: HE GIVES US FAMILY, HE GIVES US FRIENDS...




FAMILY FELLOWSHIP FRIDAY

I teach three classes at Rowan University. Yesterday, in class, we talked about not having a class again until after the THANKSGIVING BREAK. Several people hung around afterwards lovingly telling fond memories of past THANKSGIVINGS and plans for this THANKSGIVING. One girl said that her family invites people who have nowhere to go for THANKSGIVING and sits everyone around a big ping pong table for the feast. It was evident that she was very proud and connected to this family tradition.

If you were to ask our children something that they did growing up during THANKSGIVING, I think that at least four memories would come up pretty quickly. One I talked about last week - PLAYING GAMES. The other three:
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1. BEING WITH COUSINS! We have a large extended family and our kids have A LOT of cousins in Virginia, Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado, Nebraska, Minnesota, Michigan, South America... Whew! When we lived in Texas we did THANKSGIVING up BIG with their "Houston cousins". When we moved to Nebraska there were cousins all around, including the "Houston cousins" who had moved there, too. This is the first THANKSGIVING break that we will not be together. (Caleb/Krista in Missouri, Jordan/Jacqueline/Mavis/Crystal together in Illinois, Steve/Patti/Jessica together in New Jersey)... No cousins in the mix that we know of!


Here we are in Houston,Texas...

Thanksgiving of 1991...

Morgan's are on the left...

Shelly is one of Steve's seven sisters....

our family is on the right...

our kids are ages 4, 6, 8, and 10...


























It was so hot in Houston,

that after playing football and jumping rope,

the kids got in the hot tub to cool off!



    Steve winks as he enjoys eating with the cousins

    during our Thanksgiving days of

    1992.



2. THANKSGIVING BASKETS - we've spent many hours packing and delivering these care packages with different church groups that we've been a part of. These gifts were delivered to those who we were aware were in need of food and/or encouragement. Even if we don't remember all the people we shared with over the years, we do often remember the part about "Dad getting us ready to sing", "it was freezing" or "the time the cars were loaded up, ready to deliver and Mom and Dad had a little "fender bender" with the Geo Metro and the Chevy Suburban. Have any idea who won? Well, let's just say the Geo lost it's side mirror on the passenger side... so Steve stuffed a bag down in the hole in the door where the mirror had been and tied a big red Christmas ribbon there. Ahhhh, memories! Sweet family fellowship!
.

3. SIX WHITE HORSES

While living in the Abilene, Texas area I became acquainted with Doc Beazley who trained many white horses at Hardin-Simmons University. For many years, they would take six of them to march in the Macy's Day parade. Sometime before or after Thanksgiving, we would make a point to go over to the stables to see Doc and the horses. The pics below include our four kids making some great memories hanging out around the "SIX WHITE HORSES".

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The famed Six White Horses began in the late 1920’s when Will “Sheriff” Watson decided to ride his white horse in front of the Hardin Simmons Cowboy Band. It was so popular that it was expanded to include all 6 flags of Texas. Students were chosen to carry the 6 flags of Texas (Spain, France, Mexico, Texas, Confederate and U.S.) and an HSU tradition was born. In 1962, Dr. W.O. “Doc” Beazley took over the helm of the 6 White Horses. Under Doc’s 36-year tenure the program grew. Doc also authored 11 books featuring the White Horses. One of my first memories as a young girl was memorizing the poem about the six white horses pulling JFK's casket. I found it online here: http://www.doncaster.on.ca/viola/sixwhitehorses.html

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1991: Here Doc Beazley is saddling up the horses while our kids anxiously wait! Each of the kids eventually get a ride...













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1992: Doc brought the 6 White Horses to our holiday parade. We're sitting on the side of the road in front of our church building as the horses march down Commercial Avenue with the Jones County, Texas courthouse in the background.

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I would love hearing some of your Thanksgiving memories, traditions, or plans. Those that you made as a child...those that you are making now with your family... or ideas that you would like to implement...



  • If you don't have a blog, then just LEAVE A COMMENT below.

  • If you have a blog, LEAVE A COMMENT and then feel free to link up with Mr. Linky. You're invited to copy this FAMILY FELLOWSHIP graphic and post it on your blog each Friday along with a post about your own family fellowship memories, traditions, or plans.


May GOD richly bless your THANKSGIVING FAMILY FELLOWSHIP!


Thursday, November 20, 2008

PEOPLE NEED THE LORD: HE'S THE PERFECT PARENT!



Thank you for stopping by today
as I share with you a few things about
TRANSFORMING your parenting on
.

TRANSFORMING THURSDAY.
.

Be assured, I am no expert!
I don't profess to know any answers
other that those that GOD has blessed me with
on this parenting journey.
That's why on Wednesday nights at the Pitman church
we have a class specifically looking at

HOW GOD DOES FAMILY!
.
This class is not how some doctor does family or
what some expert says but it's

How GOD does family!

We'll have one more class session in two weeks.
Since we were so far behind,
we combined 3 lessons last night.
What a lot of material!
Rest assured, I won't share it all with you here...
just the highlights.
Some things to help you think...
.
As Steve and I were raising our children we taught them how important it was to be WISE. WISDOM comes only from GOD. In fact, this is what scripture says,
.
James 1:5
“But if any of you lacks wisdom,
let him ask of God,
who gives to all men generously
and without reproach,
and it will be given to him."

.

Steve chose 26+ WISE SAYINGS from the Bible book of Proverbs that would follow an ABC'S acrostic or acronym. We learned those verses as a family, memorized them, meditated on them, discussed them, and even used them as thoughtful consequences. You see, we also had a special chair in our kitchen. We had read the verse,

Proverbs 7:4
Say to wisdom,
‘You are my sister,’
And call understanding your intimate friend…”


.


The "special chair" in our kitchen was for SISTER WISDOM. We made a sign and hung it on the chair. If someone specifically needed more wisdom, the chair was a good place to sit and think about and pray for WISDOM or memorize some of those verses.
.
Last night, we shared that list of verses after we had focused on looking again at verses in Genesis and Ephesians that show so beautifully HOW GOD DOES FAMILY. The rest of this post will be some of those scriptures from Genesis. Are you looking for some more TRANSFORMING PARENTING PRINCIPLES - in addition to praying for WISDOM? You can find them specifically in the bold words in scripture below and see how GOD:
  • reminded that He had given boundaries
  • allowed for creativity
  • asked questions
  • gave consequences (fair, firm, consistent)
  • was consistent, consistent, consistent...
.
Genesis 2:19 “And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called a living creature, that was its name.”
.
Genesis 3:16-19 “To the woman He said, ‘I will greatly multiply Your pain in childbirth, In pain you shall bring forth children; Yet your desire shall be for your husband, And he shall rule over you.’ 17 Then to Adam He said, ‘Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, 'You shall not eat from it'; Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you shall eat of it All the days of your life. 18 ‘Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you; And you shall eat the plants of the field; 19 By the sweat of your face You shall eat bread, Till you return to the ground, Because from it you were taken; For you are dust, And to dust you shall return.’ "


.
Genesis 3:22-24 “ Then the LORD God said, "Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil; and now, lest he stretch out his hand, and take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever" — 23 therefore the LORD God sent him out from the garden of Eden, to cultivate the ground from which he was taken. 24 So He drove the man out; and at the east of the garden of Eden He stationed the cherubim, and the flaming sword which turned every direction, to guard the way to the tree of life.”


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Genesis 4:6-15 “Then the LORD said to Cain, "Why are you angry? And why has your countenance fallen? 7 "If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it." 8 And Cain told Abel his brother. And it came about when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him. 9 Then the LORD said to Cain, "Where is Abel your brother?" And he said, "I do not know. Am I my brother's keeper?" 10 And He said, "What have you done?"

.

LET GOD TRANSFORM YOUR PARENTING:

  • give your children boundaries (firm, fair, and consistent)
  • follow through with consequences when boundaries are not adhered to (firm, fair, and consistent)
  • check your boundaries to make sure that they are not so rigid that they will break your child's spirit (some sense of flexibility models God's grace)
  • allow for creativity by sometimes giving open ended boundaries that allow your child to be fluent, flexible, and explore many possibilities/options
  • ask good questions
  • be consistent, consistent, consistent....

HOW GOD DOES FAMILY:
IT'S TRANSFORMING!
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SOBERING NOTE: Yesterday, Marcel, a young adult pre-med student in Philadelphia collapsed and died. Although Marcel had some health challenges, we are still in shock! Marcel was the brother-in-law of one of our Transformed Moms in the slideshow above. We reach out in love and compassion to Marcel's mama, his brother Steve, Karelle, their children and Marcel's entire extended family. We soberly realize how important it is to cherish the time together as family! We soberly realize how much PEOPLE NEED THE LORD!
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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

PEOPLE NEED THE LORD: LOVE THEM UNTIL THEY ASK YOU WHY

WOMEN IN THE WORD WEDNESDAY


You say that you want to be

MORE LIKE HIM?

.

You know that

PEOPLE NEED THE LORD?

.
Then, LOVE LIKE HIM!

Love like He loved in the Old Testament!

.
Then, LOVE LIKE HIM!

Love like He loved in the New Testament!

.
Then, LOVE LIKE HIM!

Love like He loves today!

.
LOVE PEOPLE UNTIL

THEY ASK YOU WHY!

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OLD TESTAMENT: Psalms 136

GOD IS GOOD
1Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good;

For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
.
GOD IS GOD
2 Give thanks to the God of gods,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
3 Give thanks to the Lord of lords,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
.
GOD IS THE CREATOR
4 To Him who alone does great wonders,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting;
5 To Him who made the heavens with skill,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting;
6 To Him who spread out the earth above the waters,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting;
7 To Him who made the great lights,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting:
8 The sun to rule by day,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting,
9 The moon and stars to rule by night,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
.
GOD IS THE MIGHTY DELIVERER
10 To Him who smote the Egyptians in their first-born,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting,
11 And brought Israel out from their midst,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting,
12 With a strong hand and an outstretched arm,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting;
13 To Him who divided the Red Sea asunder,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting,
14 And made Israel pass through the midst of it,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting;
15 But He overthrew Pharaoh and his army in the Red Sea,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
.
GOD IS THE GOOD SHEPHERD AND TEACHER
16 To Him who led His people through the wilderness,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting;
.
GOD IS THE MIGHTY DELIVERER
17 To Him who smote great kings,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting,
18 And slew mighty kings,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting:
19 Sihon, king of the Amorites,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting,
20 And Og, king of Bashan,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting,
21 And gave their land as a heritage,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting,
22 Even a heritage to Israel His servant,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
23 Who remembered us in our low estate,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting,
24 And has rescued us from our adversaries,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting;

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GOD IS THE BREAD OF LIFE
25 Who gives food to all flesh,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
.
GOD IS LOVE
26 Give thanks to the God of heaven,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
.
.
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NEW TESTAMENT - Mark 12:28-32
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"What commandment is the foremost of all?"
29 Jesus answered, "The foremost is,
'Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord;
  • and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,

  • and with all your soul,

  • and with all your mind,

  • and with all your strength.'

31 "The second is this,
  • 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'

There is no other commandment greater than these."

.

NEW TESTAMENT - I Corinthians 13
.
Love is...

  • patient,
  • love is kind,
  • and is not jealous;
  • love does not brag
  • and is not arrogant,
  • does not act unbecomingly;
  • it does not seek its own,
  • is not provoked,
  • does not take into account a wrong suffered,
  • does not rejoice in unrighteousness,
  • but rejoices with the truth;
  • bears all things,
  • believes all things,
  • hopes all things,
  • endures all things.
  • Love never fails

.NEW TESTAMENT: 1 John 4:7-18

.
7 Beloved, let us love one another,

for love is from God;

and everyone who loves is born of God

and knows God.

The one who does not love does not know God,

for God is love...

...if we love one another, God abides in us,

and His love is perfected in us.

13 By this we know that we abide in Him

and He in us,

because He has given us of His Spirit...

...God is love,

and the one who abides in love abides in God,

and God abides in him.

By this, love is perfected with us,

that we may have confidence in the day of judgment;

because as He is,

so also are we in this world."

.

LOVE THEM UNTIL

THEY ASK YOU WHY!

.

Then,

you can tell your GOD STOPS...

your REMEMBRANCE STORIES!

.





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I read this comment yesterday on Terry Rush's blog:
"Jesus called us to love our neighbors, enemies, and those who persecute us. And He meant it, trouble is a lot of us listen to talk radio and our fears and we easily forget the Master's command."
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2010 Pitman WOMEN REACHING OUT IN FAITH RETREAT - Cape May, NJ

TRANSFORMED MOM, LISA, REQUESTED PRAYERS FOR HER HUBBY: FULLY RESTORED! FULLY HEALED!