I don’t know who invented Windows 8…. This red-head that is all hyped up on steroids is about to snap! I’ll take Windows XP any day of the week. I have been working for more than 3 hours trying to get precious pictures off my phones onto my computer in some logical order. It shouldn’t be this hard! Frustration! à Exasperation! à Anger! Help me, Jesus! You know, life was a lot simpler when phones were hooked to cords, cameras took pictures on film that was developed, the local area TV only had channels 3, 6, and 12, all the stores closed at 6:00 PM Monday through Saturday and all day on Sunday, and you could pull your car up to the gas pump and tell the station attendant to “Fill ‘err up!” and he would wash the windshield and check the oil for free. I know, I’m telling my age but it’s what’s on my mind tonight. Is life on the fast-track really that much better? I think not. Seems like every day is filled with hurry up to do this or hurry up to get that done, or Oh no, I forgot that! Oh, I know I’m not alone in this because everyone I’ve talked with over the past few weeks is experiencing similar episodes of turmoil, chaos, and harassment. Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you; not as the world gives, do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.” The key point in this statement is the peace that Jesus is describing is the kind of peace that is found in the kingdom of heaven; not the shallow, superficial peace we obtain from things found in this world. The number one tactic the enemy uses against us is to disturb our peace by planting seeds of doubt and fear in our minds. When fear and anxiousness about the future and the unknown take root; the result is chaos, turmoil, and anxiety. Throughout the Bible, over and over, God says, “Do not be afraid! Do not fear! Don’t be anxious for anything!” Let me ask you something, “Are you fully persuaded that you can believe God?” I have a feeling we’ll continue to experience periods of turmoil and chaos until we reach the place of real spiritual maturity; that place where we are so fully persuaded that God is able in every instance to provide for us, to save us, to deliver us, and to heal us that we never give a single thought to any other possibility. This should be the goal of our determination. Jesus paid the price and now all we have to do is believe! Oh my, oh my, how much Jesus Loves You!
Good morning everyone! First, thanks to all of you for your overwhelming response to yesterday’s post. I can’t even begin to explain how your responses encourage me. Last Wednesday morning before I left town to go to the hospital I made a stop at the Post Office to pick up the mail. I have this bad habit of not going every day so I had accumulated quite an array of envelopes; mostly junk mail, but never the less mail. I sorted through looking at the return addresses when suddenly one made my heart jump up in my throat. Big, bold, black letters that said, “IRS”! Why is it that we always think the worst? It was only a few weeks ago I had actually gotten my 2013 return filed and now I was getting a letter. I sat there a few minutes; trying to decide if I wanted to open it or just pretend I didn’t get it until later. You guessed right. My curiosity got the best of me and I had to see what it said. Turns out I had failed to send in a form explaining a deduction I had taken. They had declared my return incomplete and would continue processing once they received the necessary form. No problem. All I have to do is complete the form and send it in. But, for that split second there was a wondering; “Had I done something incorrect? Was I going to be audited? What is this about? Am I in trouble?” A little later, the Lord brought this back to me. His voice was very clear in my heart. You know, that’s where the Lord talks to us. He doesn’t speak to our minds. He talks to our hearts. And I heard Him say very clearly, “Deb, I want you to be as concerned over being in total obedience to everything I tell you to do as you were concerned over that letter from the IRS!” Okay, Lord, you got my attention. Have I missed something? Once again, my heart was up in my throat. No, I hadn’t missed anything but Father wanted me to realize that He wants first place. His assignments should take precedence and priority over everything else. But, this is not because He is such a demanding God or He needs to exert His great and mighty power over us little weak humans. No, quite the opposite. He wants us to walk in total obedience to Him so that we will always be correctly positioned to receive His blessing! It’s only in that place where we are seeking Him, seeking His kingdom, and searching for His righteousness to be manifested in our lives that we truly can receive the fullness of love, grace, and blessing our Heavenly Father has for us. He is a big God and He wants you to know He is still very much in control. No one can derail you from His plan and purpose unless you allow it to happen. Don’t listen to words of people who speak negatively toward you. Listen to the Words of Jesus. They will be words that build you up, edify your spirit, cleanse you from all unrighteousness, and forgive you of all sin. It is His words hidden in your heart that makes abundant life available to you each and every moment of each and every day. He wrote you a letter. Check out the return address on His envelope. You won’t see any big, bold, black letters; only those of crimson red that continually prove how much “Jesus Loves YOU!”
Good morning! It is so nice to hear the birds singing instead of the rain falling. To bring you up to date, to say the least, the past few days have been something of a challenge. Beginning about two weeks ago, I knew I didn’t feel very well but I thought the tiredness and sluggishness was probably from burning the candle at both ends. All I needed was a couple of good night’s sleep to take care of it. I was wrong, which is not surprising! I had bloodwork done on Thursday so the tests would be back for my scheduled doctor appointment on Wednesday of last week. Sunday afternoon, I did the music service at the Magnolia. Exhausted, I packed my bags for the trip to Bridgeport for women’s prison ministry Monday night. The plan was to stay in Bridgeport Monday and Tuesday nights, then catch the doctor appointment Wednesday morning on the way home. Halfway to Dallas, the phone rang. It was the doctor. My liver enzymes which should be no more than 35 were almost to a 1000 points. Instructions were to come by the office in Dallas, have another test to validate the one I had done Thursday. This took a couple of extra hours and by the time I finally made it to Bridgeport, unloaded the car, and got checked into the hotel, I was wiped out. I took a short nap but when I awoke I knew I was way too sick to go and minister. Disappointed, I called to let them know I wasn’t coming and went back to bed. At 8:30 the next morning the doctor was calling. The liver enzymes had become even more elevated and liver damage was happening. Instructions were to get back to Dallas to be hospitalized with the expectation of being there several days. The weather conditions were supposed to get a lot worse and I wasn’t prepared to be away from home but two days. I begged, and the doctor finally agreed to let me come home to make necessary preparations if I would stop in Dallas long enough to get a dose of solumedrol (intravenous steroid shot) and come back Wednesday morning. After eight hours on the road and only 3 hours sleep, I was back in Dallas at 10:30 Wednesday morning. Around 5:30 the admission process was completed. It had been a very long and exhausting day, but I was safely tucked away in room 909 of the Roberts Building in Baylor Hospital which would become home for the next four and half days.
I don’t know exactly how they do their schedules but during the next few days, all in all, between doctors, nurses, aides, and other staff, I met between 35-40 people. The bed wasn’t too desirable, if you know what I mean, so I mostly sat in the chair. The nurses would come in, see the empty bed, and ask, “Where is the patient?” I would answer, “That would be me!” Each one responded, “Well, YOU don’t look sick!” Ah, hah! There’s my open door. My answer was, “I know. I don’t look sick. I don’t really feel sick; but my blood work says I am sick. But! Jesus says, ‘I’m healed!’ and I believe Him so now we just have to get the bloodwork to agree.” Some would give instant confirmation of agreement. Others just kind of grinned and two or three got that “deer in the headlight look.” I don’t believe for one minute that Jesus would make me sick so I could be at a certain place at a certain time, but I do believe He will use every opportunity in the midst of any circumstance to share His love, hope, and encouragement. This is what He meant when He talked about taking what the devil means for harm and turning it around for good. Because of this, I knew there would be someone special that needed a word of life, love, and encouragement. Another thing, happiness is a choice and I choose to be happy. If I had to be stuck in that hospital room, I decided the best thing to do would be turn it into a place of testimony. So each time someone would enter I told a little more of my story about the miracles of healing I experienced last summer and the hope of glory that surrounds me now. The Holy Spirit would rise up in me. He is so much fun. He gets so excited. It was as if I could hear Him saying, “Oh, let Me tell them, let Me tell them, let Me tell them how much they are loved and how My power can change their lives!” As He spoke to my heart and through me to each one of them, I watched their countenances change before my eyes. I saw smiles, grins, and even a few tears but most of all I saw the love of God touching His children. And, all the while I was pouring out encouragement to others, He was building faith and hope in me. It’s kind of like the David thing. You know, when David went up against Goliath, he wasn’t afraid. He encouraged himself by remembering how the Lord had helped him overcome the lion and the bear. Likewise, God was there to help him overcome the giant. Father God does the same for us. By rehearsing the miracles of the past, I was given new assurance of miracles for the present and future. God is so good. But, with each passing hour, I kept looking for that “one”; the special “one” that God wanted to touch. Saturday afternoon an older woman of color came in to clean the room. I felt a tug on my heart but I had a visitor with me and she took care of things quickly and left the room. Sunday morning she was back; only this time she was meticulously cleaning every corner. I tried to get out of her way and planted myself in the chair. I watched as she carefully covered every inch of that room. And then, she stood right in front of me and said, “Can I ask you a question?” I said, “Sure”. She said, “Does what I do make a difference for people?” The Holy Spirit rose up in me and began to minister to her. For the next 4 or 5 minutes He covered her with encouragement and love. What had been a wrinkled brow of discouragement was now a smiling face of hope. Yes, there were a couple of tears on the cheek but they were tears of joy not sadness and despair. With a big smile, she asked, “Can I have a hug?” I stood up and gave her a great big Jesus hug. She thanked me. I thanked Jesus. Now it was time to go home. The special “one” had received the ministry from the Lord. His purpose and plan had been fulfilled. He had turned the tables on the enemy. Once again He was victorious and I got to go along for the ride. I’m safe at home now. Yes, I am struggling some with the nasty side effects of the medicine but I know He will get me through. Jesus doesn’t show any partiality. What He does for me, He will do for you! Always remember no matter where you are or what the situation is, “Jesus Loves YOU!”
Thanks for checking out my website and coming to my blog page. I pray you will be blessed and encouraged by the things I share. Have a great day! Deb