PRAISE REPORT!!

I’m so EXCITED–I just can’t contain it!! I have to tell the world!! My cousin Derek and his wife Shawn have GREAT NEWS!! Bailey Nicole was born some time around 1:00 p.m. today, on Friday, August 31st!! She weighed in at 7 lbs. and 13 oz. and was 20 inches long! Whew!! Glory Hallelujah–Praise God!!

Derek and Shawn have waited on God for this baby–they have been married over 12 years (their 13th wedding anniversary is this coming Sept. 3rd, I do believe)! …And my precious Aunt Teresa (who presses on in her health battle) is a proud grand-mama today!! Praise the Lord!! GOD IS GOOD!!

His Mysterious Ways…

It’s certainly true that life is full of pleasure and pain, joys and sorrows, triumphs and trials. Of course, it is not the circumstances we should focus on, but our response. I want to follow God through the sunshine and the rain. Some days I feel more like doing that than others. However, my feelings are truly irrelevant in the matter. Does the fact that I may feel bad give me the right to speak harshly to others, be impatient, react selfishly, etc.? No, it does not.

So the other day, I poured my heart out to God. I did not feel like it. Truth is, I had been feeling very bad all day (mentally, emotionally, spiritually, physically, etc.) I remember thinking, are things ever really going to change? I don’t often do this, but I even asked God for a sign of encouragement about our situation.

…And you know what? I’m learning that God will provide us with the encouragement we need to press on–if we remain open and responsive to His Holy Spirit. He won’t always answer in the way we want–or the immediate “Big Fix” that we want, but He will send us the “manna” we need for each day–day by day. …And you know what else? Well, you’ve heard that “God Works In Mysterious Ways?” I’ve certainly found that to be true… The encouragement He sends along the way can also come from very unexpected places…

To view a couple of recent, personal examples of “unexpected encouragement,” you may click here.

Would Jesus Wear A Rolex?

This song has been “playing” in my mind for two days. Yeah, I’m really not kidding–I kind of wish I were. It’s a funny and entertaining song, but then again, it’s not so funny… It makes me think–it doesn’t make me doubt my Jesus or my faith or even that there are true and genuine T.V. evangelists out there. However, it does remind me to be cautious about who I “tune” into. The song also makes me consider my own values and priorities. You know, it’s easy to criticize “those in the public eye,” but God also knows what we each truly value. I hope it will make you think a little too… To view the song–“Would Jesus Wear A Rolex On His Television Show?,” you may click here.

Doesn’t He Need A Seat-belt Too?

The kids and I were in the van, when Kerry suddenly yells out, “Oh, no!!

I was a little startled and concerned about his sudden outburst. “What?” I ask.

God doesn’t have on a seat-belt!” Little Kerry exclaims.

“Honey, I think that’s o.k., ” I say.

Well, He’s in the van, isn’t He?” Kerry asks. “…And everybody who’s in this van needs to be wearing a seat-belt!!!”

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**O.k. I admit it. I just don’t know what to say to that!!

Recent Prayer Update

My cousin Tiffany just sent me another update about Sammy and Teresa. She says that her parents are doing well, but of course still desire our prayers. Also, Tiffany asks that we continue to pray for Derek and Shawn and the safe arrival of their “precious little Bailey.” Shawn’s due date is “right around the corner”–September 4th!!! For further details, please click here.

Jesus Paid It All

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“…Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow…” –Isaiah 1:18

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Jesus Paid It All

(Words by Elvina Hall, 1865)

I hear the Savior say,
“Thy strength indeed is small;
Child of weakness, watch and pray,
Find in Me thine all in all.”

Refrain

Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.

For nothing good have I
Whereby Thy grace to claim,
I’ll wash my garments white
In the blood of Calv’ry’s Lamb.

Refrain

And now complete in Him
My robe His righteousness,
Close sheltered ’neath His side,
I am divinely blest.

Refrain

Lord, now indeed I find
Thy power and Thine alone,
Can change the leper’s spots
And melt the heart of stone.

Refrain

When from my dying bed
My ransomed soul shall rise,
“Jesus died my soul to save,”
Shall rend the vaulted skies.

Refrain

And when before the throne
I stand in Him complete,
I’ll lay my trophies down
All down at Jesus’ feet.

Refrain

What Are You Doing, Kerry?

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Little Kerry and I had the following dialogue today:

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Me: “What are you doing, Kerry?”

Kerry: “I’m not doing anything.”

Me: “Don’t tell me a story! I know you’re doing something… Is it bad?”

Kerry: No, it’s not bad, but it’s not good either!!

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**Hmm, what do you think? Should I be concerned?

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As The Deer

“As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. Psalm 42:1

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As The Deer

Written by Martin Nystrom

As the deer panteth for the water,
So my soul longs after you.
You alone are my hearts desire,
And I long to worship You.

Chorus
You alone are my strength, my shield;
To You alone may my spirit yield.
You alone are my hearts desire,
and I long to worship You.

I want you more than gold or silver,
Only You can satisfy.
You alone are the real joy giver
And the apple of my eye.

Chorus
You alone are my strength, my shield;
To You alone may my spirit yield.
You alone are my hearts desire,
and I long to worship You.

You’re my friend and You’re my brother,
Even though you are a King.
I love You more than any other
So much more than anything.

Chorus
You alone are my strength, my shield;
To You alone may my spirit yield.
You alone are my hearts desire,
and I long to worship You.

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“…Whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst…” –John 4:14

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Sarah’s “Preaching” Again…

…O.k., but in a good way and without a lot of “preachiness.” Little Kerry was not wanting to get dressed for church yesterday morning. He was whining and complaining–having a bad morning–like all of us every once in a while, huh? Kerry was tired and cranky… He didn’t like what Daddy picked out for him to wear, and he said he didn’t want to go to church…

So, my Sarah Beth says, ( gently, yet firmly), “Kerry, come over here.” She then points up to the 10 Commandments poster on our kitchen wall. Sarah directs Kerry’s attention to Commandment #4. She then reads it aloud to Kerry (speaking with authority),”Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy!”

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Once again, I say, “Preach it, my little Sarah Beth!” I say, “Preach it!”

Jesus Saves

Below is the song that’s “playing” in my mind this morning. It’s a song of joy and victory and a good one to begin anyone’s morning! Happy Sunday morning to ya!

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Jesus Saves

Words-Priscilla J. Owens/Music-William Kirkpatrick

We have heard the joyful sound: Jesus saves! Jesus saves!
Spread the tidings all around: Jesus saves! Jesus saves!
Bear the news to every land, climb the mountains, cross the waves;
Onward! ’tis our Lord’s command; Jesus saves! Jesus saves!

Waft it on the rolling tide: Jesus saves! Jesus saves!
Tell to sinners far and wide: Jesus saves! Jesus saves!
Sing, you islands of the sea; echo back, you ocean caves;
Earth shall keep her jubilee: Jesus saves! Jesus saves!

Sing above the battle strife: Jesus saves! Jesus saves!
By His death and endless life Jesus saves! Jesus saves!
Shout it brightly through the gloom, when the heart for mercy craves;
Sing in triumph o’er the tomb: Jesus saves! Jesus saves!

Give the winds a mighty voice: Jesus saves! Jesus saves!
Let the nations now rejoice: Jesus saves! Jesus saves!
Shout salvation full and free; highest hills and deepest caves;
This our song of victory: Jesus saves! Jesus saves!

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“…I did not come to judge the world, but to save it.” –John 12:47

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