This is just a blog about my thoughts, my family, my everyday life. Because I am a Christian and have ups and downs like everyone else, I hope it will encourage others to either turn to Christ for the first time, or lean on Him when times are rough. Often life is just random and funny. I started this blog after many years of writing to my church about our vacations. They began to encourage me to blog and finally I am. Thanks for reading.

"Behold, upon the mountains, the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace!" Nahum 1:15

God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him. John Piper

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

A Happy Meal, A Debit Card, and A Lost Ring

Funny things seem to happen to me in clusters.  They surprise me and make me laugh.  It is better than crying.
My niece Molly spent the night with me night before last and we watched movies into the night.  Molly has a younger brother and sister and contends with their early hours, so I let her sleep in and take it easy.  I worked in the kitchen and she did as she liked.  Around noon, we left to run an errand for my mom and meet her mom somewhere along the way.  I drove through McDonald's and ordered her a Happy Meal.  Just a cheeseburger with ketchup only, please.  As I went to pay, my card was declined.  She ran it again, and again it was declined.  After the third try, we both gave up and I called my banker, Tommy Dahn.  He informed me that our cards had been compromised.  Thank you, Target.  He said I could use it with my debit number only.  So I went to the bank, retrieved some cash, and went back to Mickey D's.
We met up with Kasie and Molly departed.  I proceeded to WalMart. As I walked through the meat aisle, I noticed a group of women leaning over a frozen bin, pulling out Honeysuckle turkey breasts and putting them into a basket.  I looked at the price...25 cents a pound!  I asked about them and she said that they must sell them, but that there was nothing wrong with them.  Each was under or around two dollars. Now really, I mustn't let greed take over.
I asked why they were removing them and she said, "This lady dropped her ring in there."  She was an elderly lady and I looked on the floor around her to be sure she did not just drop it.  Meanwhile a crowd was gathering.
I mosied to the back of the store to get my mom's milk.  When I returned, the search was still on and the crowd still there.  Soon the woman held up the ring and shouted, "I found it!  It was my grandmother's!"  Everyone clapped.
I grabbed a couple more turkey breasts and headed for the check out.  I went through the self check lane. When I swiped my card and put in my pin number....declined.  I swiped again.  It was as if I was arguing wtih the machine.  We do not carry credit cards of any kind so I stared into my wallet at my driver's license and Kroger card. Hmmm.  What to do. Suddenly a card shone out from the rest.  It was a credit card!  I grabbed it without looking at it and swiped it.  Transaction approved!  Wahoo!  And then I called Tommy, the banker.  "Yes," he said, "your card is dead, now." I told him what I had done and he asked me what card I used.  I told him I had no idea.  He asked if it was green and I said, "Yes."  Then he informed me that it was the church's card.  "Oh well," I said, "the church just bought us eighteen dollars worth of groceries."  Of course we will pray them back. (Lest you think I am completely dense about what cards I have, I did not have my glasses on and the crowds were pressing in and I thought it was one that we had for this.  Believe me?)
Tommy then told me that he went to the bank and picked us up some new cards and I had to wait two hours before using it. (You would think he was accusing me of not being able to wait that long. Really. How insulting.)
I delivered the goods to my mom and later that day, Tommy and I went back to see if there were any two dollar breasts left and of course they were all gone.  I know there is a lesson in there somewhere, but I will figure it out on another day.  Right now I need to go see if this debit card works.
BTW - we have Lifelock.  They stopped our cards from being used by others.  Just FYI.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Mary Knew

Have you ever thought what it might have really been like for Mary?  She was pregnant without a husband, and the father of the baby was her heavenly Father.  Nevermind the awe she must have felt, the humility, the joy.  Nevermind the puzzling situation she found herself in, and nevermind the wonder.
Luke 1:26-30   In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth,  to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin's name was Mary. And he came to her and said, "Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!" But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 
What about when the Pharisees and Sadducees and people she grew up knowing accused Jesus of lying about who He was?  Mary knew.  Did they accuse her of being a harlot?  Did they look at her with disdain?
John 6:41-42  So the Jews grumbled about him, because he said, "I am the bread that came down from heaven." They said, "Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does he now say, 'I have come down from heaven'?" 
Mark 6:2-4  And on the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astonished, saying, "Where did this man get these things? What is the wisdom given to him? How are such mighty works done by his hands? Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?" And they took offense at him. And Jesus said to them, "A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household." 
They disregarded all that Christ said about Himself to the point of murder. They did not just mock him and laugh at Him.  They wanted Him gone.
Matthew 26:3-4  Then the chief priests and the elders of the people gathered in the palace of the high priest, whose name was Caiaphas,and plotted together in order to arrest Jesus by stealth and kill him.  
But Mary knew.  Even Jesus' brothers did not believe until after the resurrection.  Did Mary not tell them? Obviously if she did, it wasn't convincing enough.  Questions must have run through their minds, too.
John 7:5  For not even his brothers believed in him. 
It did not matter what they said or what they did or how convincing their arguments.
Mary always knew.  You can know, too.


Saturday, December 21, 2013

A Root Out Of Dry Ground

I have been trying to read the passages in scripture - Old Testament and New - that speak of Jesus' birth. Guess what?  It is ALL about His birth, His coming to earth, and His return to earth.  I see Redeemer in each book of the Bible.  However, there is one particular verse that caught my attention this week.

Isaiah 53:2-3  For he grew up before him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground; he had no form or majesty that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him.  He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. 

This Root out of dry ground.  Not much grows out of dry ground...and what does isn't very pretty.  This Root was not welcome to the world, but for a group of shepherds and angels.  This Root was purposely planted in a dry and thirsty land. One Root from dry ground brought life for all who will believe.
The Creator became the created...with no form or majesty that we should look at Him or beauty that we should desire Him.
How very like God to give us a Baby for a king...a weed for our bread and water for our souls.  How very like God to come to us who are so desperately in need.  Praise His holy name. His name is Jesus Christ...Immanuel, God with us.

Isaiah 11:10  In that day the root of Jesse, who shall stand as a signal for the peoples- of him shall the nations inquire, and his resting place shall be glorious. 
Romans 15:12  And again Isaiah says, "The root of Jesse will come, even he who arises to rule the Gentiles; in him will the Gentiles hope." 
Revelation 22:16   "I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you about these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star." 


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Backyard Bethlehem

My grandchildren love to play dress up...well at least the girls do...except for Ivy, so nevermind.  Yesterday, I talked them into recreating the Christmas story.  I bribed Luke with treats.  (Works every time.)  Resulting in the following:

The angel appeared.

Luke 1:30-31  And the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.  And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 

Matthew 1:20-21  An angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, "Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins." 

The innkeeper offered the manger to them.

Luke 2:7  And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.
Luke 2:8-14  And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear. And the angel said to them, "Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger." And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!" 
I have no verse for this wayward sheep...illustrated in the scene below.

Matthew 2:1-2  Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, "Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him." 

Matthew 2:10-11   When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.  11 And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 

Matthew 1:21  She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins." 

Monday, December 9, 2013


Decembers run the same course in different ways each year, the peak being Christmas Day and then sliding down a bit to New Year's Eve. (I spend my New Year's Eve at home in my pj's with hubby Tommy.  We try and stay awake long enough to hear the illegal firecrackers going off outside and kiss a Happy New Year.)
It is mid-December now and I strive to make this month different and better than those of the past.  I imagine myself baking cookies with jingle bells hanging around my neck, while listening to the constant barrage of Christmas carols blaring from the radio.  It's all part of the holidays, isn't it?  Cookies and candies, songs and movies, ribbons and bows tied to everything that doesn't move, and some that do. The problem is...I am tired and I know where this is all leading - Christmas Day, when my head hits the pillow and the once loved decorations become another item on my list of things to cross off by putting them away. It makes me sad, but isn't it true?  Please don't get me wrong.  I repeat this process every year because I either love it, or I don't know what else to do with this month. No, I love it, but...
There must be a better way to celebrate the coming of this Baby, this Savior of the world, this Gift from God. To not participate in customary activities might make me sad in January...but what if it didn't?  What if I changed my habits about all of this and what if I loved the change? What if I just stopped and worshiped as the shepherds did on that night in Bethlehem, giving nothing but themselves in praise? Did they repeat that every December? I doubt it. Did it change them?  Surely so.
God's Gift to me is His Son Jesus who came to redeem me unto Himself, removing my sins by dying on a cross. As a baby in a manger, He came. So, I will wrap up all the things that ensnare my thoughts and drive me to holiday frenzy this month and lay them at His feet...and I too, will just give Him praise. That is my gift to Him...a December of praises.

Sunday, December 1, 2013


We had fifty-one for Thanksgiving.  (yes...way) When Tommy and I counted them at the end of the day, we could not believe it.  Most were family with a couple of neighbors.  Crazy.  Biggest ever.  We thank the Lord for the pretty weather that allowed young ones to play outside.  Shannon had printed up color pages and work sheets for them to decorate on the patio. The children 're-did' the backyard, creating hideouts and football fields and inviting the dog behind us to come through the fence and play for a while.
Football took place inside as well, along with food and conversation. Blank paper was rolled out on the tables along with crayons so that all could write and draw what they were thankful for.  These made for sweet memories. My bathroom was turned into a beauty salon as Shannon's sister Lacey gave haircuts and girls of all ages sat on my bed and waited their turn.  I never saw this coming, but it was actually great fun.
We are grateful for our family members and the love we share.  We are a diverse bunch, but that's okay. God did not make us to be cookie cutters. (Sorry, I did not get eveyone's picture!)

We gathered together to ask the Lord's blessing.

Rose and Ken Collins (Shannon's parents)


Miranda and Mackenzie

Cousins Emma and Evey





Beauty Parlor

Nathaniel finishes off the dessert.
The End