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Monday, February 5, 2018

I Left a Suitcase in Berlin.....

I'm home!  I made good time!  When Jessica gave me her car, she told me that whatever time the GPS gave her for arrival to the destination, "that was the time to beat!"  Well, I beat my time by more than 1/2 hour.  And, that's all I'll say about that!  :D

On the way home, I stopped by the church to gather the mail and then I stopped at the eye doctor to pick up my new glasses!  What a difference!  I could actually read signs while driving again!  I'm curious to see if the new, stronger prescription allows me to see better at night, too!

Ilene says I look like I did in my school pictures now.  :D  It is so wonderful to see her again!

It was really cold this morning!  It didn't warm up until I got past the mountains of Tennessee and western North Carolina!  There was either snow or ice on the trees on the top of the mountains!  Maybe both!  On the tops of the mountains in these photos where the mountains are lighter is where the ice/snow was.  It is hard to see.




 


I had a wonderful week plus (9 days) at Michael's, but it was so nice to get home, too!  I was listening to BBN Christian radio on the way home to Stephen Davey, who is a pastor in Cary, NC where Tim and I attended the Shepherds 360 Conference for two years.  He mentioned a saying that I thought fit me perfectly.  "I left a suitcase in Berlin."  You can listen to the message here, "Leaving a Suitcase in Israel."

A man from Germany told him about this saying.  It means to keep some sort of tie to the people, things, etc there.  A place of fond memory.  You live "here," but you've left a suitcase in Berlin.  Well, I live here, but I've left several suitcases around....one in Ohio, one in Alabama, one in NC, one in WV, one in KY, one in heaven.....I have so many fond memories that I hold in my heart when I come back home from visiting my children, when I remember growing up in KY, when I remember the years of child rearing and when I remember those loved ones who have gone to heaven.  Bittersweet memories of times that won't ever cross my path again.

And that is the cycle of life.  We all leave suitcases somewhere else.  I'll be glad when I've packed that final suitcase and the Lord calls me home to heaven, too!

That made me think of a song I always liked the tune to:
Peter, Paul & Mary – Leaving On A Jet Plane Lyrics

All my bags are packed, I'm ready to go
I'm standing here outside your door
I hate to wake you up to say goodbye
But the dawn is breakin', it's early morn
The taxi's waiting, he's blowin' his horn
Already I'm so lonesome I could cry.

Chorus:
So kiss me and smile for me
Tell me that you'll wait for me
Hold me like you'll never let me go.
(oh, baby, don't let me go!)
I'm leavin' on a jet plane
I don't know when I'll be back again
Oh, babe, I hate to go.

There's so many times I've let you down
So many times I've played around
I tell you now, they don't mean a thing
Every place I go, I think of you
Every song I sing, I sing for you
When I come back, I'll wear your wedding ring.

[Chorus:]

Now the time has come to leave you
One more time let me kiss you
Then close your eyes, and I'll be on my way.
Dream about the days to come
When I won't have to leave alone
About the times, I won't have to say,

[Chorus:]



You're welcome!  :D  Have a great Tuesday!

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Rainy Days and Sundays.....

One gets you down and the other lifts you up!  So glad when Sundays roll around!  What a great way to begin a new week!

But, let's back up a couple of days:

Friday, Feb. 2
A picture of Jessica and I as we wait for our cars to have the oil changed and tires rotated.  Having company helped to make the time pass quickly as we waited.

Do you recognize those speakers behind Jessica's shoulder?  Think drive-in movies.  LOVED going to the drive-in movie as a kid!



Saturday, February 3
Besides being my sister, Kim's birthday, Jessica and I went to a Women's Conference. ". . . hem . 2018" was the title.  "If I could touch His garment, just the hem."....There were four speakers and each woman intertwined their personal story with the woman who had an "issue of blood" for 12 years and she had exhausted her living on doctors who had not helped her and she was desperate to get close enough to Jesus in the crowd of people.....just close enough to be able to touch the hem of his garment.  And she did and immediately Jesus felt power go from Him and she was healed!  When He asked who had touched Him, she came forward and told Jesus why she had touched Him.  He said, "Daughter, your faith has made you whole; go in peace, and be healed of your disease."

Because of her issue, she was considered unclean and should not have been in the crowd in the first place.  But, her faith caused her to be bold and reach for Jesus anyway!  Her faith in Jesus healed her!

Jesus called her, Daughter.  Those of us who have been saved are daughters of the King of kings and Lord of lords.  We have his unconditional love, acceptance, understanding.  He is always available.  We are never alone.  He always forgives us.

Faith is prompted by desperation.  Faith pushes us to Jesus.  Faith overcomes obstacles.  Faith opens the door to the power of God!

The stage area where the speakers stood and the musicians played and sang.

Each table had this center piece.

Everyone in attendance received this photo holder.

The lady behind the keyboard was the main vocalist with the other 2 ladies on each side of her.  There was a drummer and 2 electric guitarists.  Jessica and Michael's church has 3 campuses, theirs being the main one.  The other 2 are in nearby towns.  We went to one of the other campuses.  The 3rd campus actually is still under construction.

Sunday, February 4
I went to bed fairly early last night and woke up really early, too!  I heard it raining outside.  It took me several hours to get back to sleep, but then it was time to get up and ready for church.
Looking out over the lake this morning.  


I zoomed in to focus on the fog rolling through.




I love this picture Jessica has hanging in her house.  It is 3 dimensional.  I'm going to attempt to either recreate it or do a smaller version in an art journal.......one of these days!

Same for this 3D boat picture!

The pastor is going through the book of Genesis and his sermon today was taken from Genesis 37 where Joseph's brothers threw him into the pit, then sold him to the Ishmaelite traders who then took Joseph to Egypt and sold him.  I took the following notes:
1.  Pits happen and we experience:
 - the feeling of aloneness, isolation, betrayal
 - fear
 - worry
Sometimes we slip into the pit.
Sometimes someone throws us into the pit.
Sometimes we jump into the pit.
2.  One sin usually leads to another
The brothers took the coat, dipped it into blood and took it back to deceive Jacob, who, remember, was a deceiver himself!  Galatians 6:7, "Be not deceived; God is not mocked:  for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap." 
3.  The pit was Joseph's path to prosperity.
He couldn't see it at this point.
The most important thing to do in the pit you find yourself in is to praise the Lord.  Eventually Joseph could say to his brothers, "You meant it for evil, but God meant it for good."  God is not caught off guard in our circumstances.  He is working His plan.  There is no panic in heaven, only plans!
4.  Forsaken by his brothers, but not forsaken by God.
Genesis 45:8, Joseph told his brothers, "it wasn't you that sent me here, but God.  And He has made me lord over Pharaoh's house and ruler over all of Egypt."  Romans 8:28 - All things work together for good to those who love God and are the called according to His purpose.


This is the last night to be with Michael, Jessica and Kara.  Jessica has already asked me when I'lll be back.  (I'm glad my in-law children don't mind me spending time with them!)  Tomorrow morning, before they are awake probably, I will head back to Winston Salem.  I will lose an hour so that is why I am leaving an hour earlier than I did when I came this way from Winston.  It is an 8 hour trip, so I should arrive around the same time there as I arrived here, barring nothing happens.  I'm dreading the trip, but once I get started, I'll be OK.  I try to find the BBN Radio stations for the whole trip.  I tried to use their app on my phone on the way here, but since the trip is mostly out of range of a 4G connection, I just search the car radio till I find it.  There was one stretch that I couldn't find it, so I listened to an oldies station.

Anyway, praying the rain is done for the trip!  I hate traveling in the rain!  Pray with me for a safe trip!  Thank you, Jessica, for your wonderful hospitality!  Love you bunches!

Friday, February 2, 2018

I See a Bad Moon aRisin'

In the last 5 months I've put 7,000 miles on the Equinox that Michael and Jessica gave to me!  I was 5 miles away from being at the mileage designated for an oil change.  So, Jessica and I took our vehicles to the place in town where she always gets that work done.  They also rotated the tires.  They told me I would need to have the brakes changed next time!  Jessica ended up paying for the work done on my car, too.  I was not expecting that and I did not want her to do that!  Thank you, Jessica!

While eating our chicken ranch pizza tonight that Jessica made, which is just so delicious, we watched the second Narnia movie.  Afterwards we finished up a game of Sorry that we had started while waiting for supper to bake.  Then we played teams, Michael and Kara were a team and Jessica and I were a team.  They were totally beating us for most of the game, but it came down to both of us needing a 1 to move our last man into home!  Michael and Kara won!

Then it was time to watch the moon rise!  It was really chilly watching it!  It was hard to hold my hand steady enough to zoom in for good pictures!

Me, Kara and Michael watching it rise from the porch while Jessica watched from inside where it was warm!










LOVE the bright reflection of the moon on the lake!


When it was all said and done.......

My daughter, Jessica, posted this picture of Thad on Facebook today and said the following:

With spray painted hair and a plaid shirt with a pen in the pocket, he didn’t exactly look 100% but Thad’s teacher told me he was so excited to tell her “I look just like my mommy’s Dad”! I cried and cried right there in the Parent/Teacher conference. If Thad grows to have my dad’s character, love for people and love for our Lord, I’ll be one happy momma!
What a sweet boy he is!  I love his fake mustache!  I love that the grandchildren think about their papaw!  Thank You, LORD, that Tim was able to be an influence in most of their young lives!  

I had to create a scrapbook page.




Jessica (Michael's wife) and I will be rising early tomorrow to go to the Women's Conference their church is sponsoring.  Have a great Saturday!

Thursday, February 1, 2018

A Horse is a Horse, Of Course!

Yesterday Kara had horse riding lessons, so I went along to watch.  It was sunny, but very breezy and cold!  Jessica and I wrapped up in a blanket while we sat on the sidelines watching!


Kara getting Pedro from the corral.

Headed to the barn.

Manicure.

Catching a few winks during Kara's manicure.

Yawning, LOL!

Warming in the sunshine

Mounted and ready to go through the obstacle course to warm Pedro up.


The obstacle course includes things for the horse to experience that are not found in their normal surrounds to get them used to unusual items.  You can't see her, but Kara is there on Pedro's back.

Freezing our buns off on the sidelines.

Kara looks like she is day dreaming here.

That's a happy face after a canter, which is her favorite!

Last maneuver of the day because Kara was getting tired.
We rushed home to change for church and left to grab some Chick-fil-A before hand.
Here's a video taken during the lessons.  You can really hear the wind whipping around the camera.



An Invitation

Have you ever received an invitation that you just could not refuse?  Have you ever received an invitation that you had not one iota of interest in?  I'm sure you can respond with a YES to both of those questions.  I know that is true for me!  There are LOTS of invitations that I am sure would fit both categories for any number of people.


What about this invitation, "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."  Matthew 11:28-30  Doesn't that sound too good to be true and something not to be refused?  And yet TONS of people rejected this invitation directly from the mouth of Jesus!  Even though they saw the miracles He did!  "He came unto his own, and his own received him not.  But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:  Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God."  John 1:11-13  

People are still rejecting this invitation today.  The invitation wasn't to just the people who heard these words from the lips of Jesus on that day some 2,000 years ago.  They have been "spoken" from the Word of God ever since that day.  Not everyone who is invited will come, but EVERYONE is invited!  How will you respond to the invitation?

There are several questions that people raise about the doctrine of salvation, but one in particular was brought up again recently that I want to address just a bit.

John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life."  Jesus died for the sins of the whole world, right?  That's what this verse is saying, right?  But, if that is true, why are people in hell today?  If Jesus paid the price for their sins when He died on the cross, who's sins are they paying for while in hell?  If Jesus' blood sacrifice did not satisfy God's requirement, why did He die?  If Jesus' blood sacrifice did not satisfy God's requirement, Jesus died in vain!  If Jesus' blood sacrifice did not satisfy God's requirement, then we are ALL without hope!

The real question is, if Jesus died for the "world" and yet some are still going to hell, who then are the people the "world" refers to in John 3:16?  John MacArthur and John Piper say it better than I can.  Please read the links below, but this is what I believe and what they say:  

"But what does the term “world” mean when used in association with Jesus’s death? Does it refer to everyone without distinction or to everyone without exception? There is a difference.  Everyone without distinction would mean that Jesus died for all kinds of people from every tongue, tribe, people, and nation. Everyone without exception would mean that he died for every single individual person without any exception. This latter view asserts that even those who die rejecting Jesus can say that Jesus’s blood was for them because those for whom Jesus died may or may not have faith in him." ~ Jarvis Williams, guest contributor at "Desiring God."

For Whom Did Christ Die? by Jarvis Williams at Desiring God

For Whom Did Christ Die? by John MacArthur at Grace to You

I know without a shadow of a doubt that God's character would not allow His Son to die in vain!  Not one drop of His blood was wasted on someone He did not have the power to save!  He can either save to the uttermost, or He can't!  He is either the sovereign God, or He is not!  He can either do what He says, or He cannot!  Jesus either died for everyone without exception, or He died for everyone without distinction.

So, if Jesus didn't die for the sins of the world (everyone without exception), who did He die for?  I'm glad you asked!  He died for me!  But, I didn't choose to be saved.  I could not, would not have chosen to be saved.  But He didn't save me against my will, either!  He gave me the power to be willing to believe!  And I am so thankful that He did!  I don't know why He chose me!  I certainly didn't deserve it!  Still don't deserve it!  Will never, ever deserve it!  But, I am so glad He chose to save me from my sin!

Are you saying, "It is not fair that He would choose you, Vicky, over someone else?"  I would have said that, too, but it isn't a matter of fairness.  It's a matter of grace.  It's a matter of mercy.  His grace and His mercy was extended to me because He chose to!  I have no argument for that.  He showed mercy to me in that I didn't get what I deserved.  He showed grace to me in that I got what I didn't deserve!  I don't pretend to understand it, but I believe it!  Thank You, LORD, for choosing to save me out of my sins!  I know I would never, ever have come to You on my own.  My total depravity would not have ever had the desire to accept Your invitation to come to You!  Thank You, thank You, a thousand times, thank You!

Here's another good read:


This is not an in-depth study on the doctrine (teaching) of salvation.  I couldn't do that here, I'll leave that to the Bible scholars.  Wouldn't know where to begin, anyway!  Maybe I have given you something to think about in this post.  These are some of the things I believe.  There's so much more I could have said, too, I'm sure!  Do I have all of the answers?  No, in no way, shape or form do I have all of the answers.  Who does?  Only God!

But, I do have an invitation for you.  Will you come to Him?  Will you bring your burden of sin to Him?  Will you believe that His death on the cross was for your sins?  Will you turn your back on your sins (repent) and leave them at the cross for His death to take care of?  I pray that you will!



Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Thrifting

Had a great time with Jessica today when we went thrifting about an hour away from her house.  It was a nice day and the trip was nice for conversation.  I had my knitting along and we listened to music on the Christian radio station.  Unfortunately, 2 of the 3 thrift stores she had planned on us going to happened to be closed today.  But a friend of hers told Jessica about another thrift store a little further up the road from where we were.  Then we went to another closer to home on our way back.  Surprisingly, the only thing I found were some little post-it type note pads.  Jessica found several articles of clothing for Kara, however.  She found a jacket for herself and some luggage in her favorite black and white houndstooth pattern.

Jessica put a roast in the crockpot before we left, so supper was basically taken care of.  We watched the last of The Lord of the Rings trilogy while eating.  She also made one of Ilene's wine cakes, so that was for dessert.  It was yummy warm!

I think I will finish up the skein of yarn on the poncho I am making and then call it quits for today!  Have a great Wednesday!

My thrifting companion for the day.

Kara's grandpa in Florida sent her a text to check out the moon tonight.  So she told me and we took our cameras out to capture it.  It amazes me to think her grandpa in Florida can look out his window and see the same moon we can see here in Alabama, or wherever!  Thank You, LORD, for sharing Your creation with us!


The Cross

"They put Him to death by hanging him on a tree, but God raised Him on the third day and made him to appear, not to all the people but to us who had been chosen by God as witnesses, who ate and drank with Him after he rose from the dead."  Acts 10:39b-41 ESV


This morning during my Quiet time, I read from Acts 10 where Peter was summoned by Cornelius and the Lord had just given Peter the vision of the unclean animals being let down from heaven in a sheet and the Lord told Peter to eat, but Peter would not because they were unclean to the Jews.  The Lord told Peter not to call them unclean.  So, when He realized Cornelius was Gentile, Peter knew what the vision meant.  The Jews didn't think the Gentiles could be saved, but God was showing them that was untrue.  Anyway, as I was reading where Peter was preaching about the cross of Christ to them, I noticed this shadow from the sun shining through the window.  I couldn't help but take a picture!


It was a beautiful day today hitting about 60 degrees.  But, it is chilly again tonight and to be cooler tomorrow.


I got some great shots of the moon during the day, too.




The picture of the buzzards flying was a shot that was zoomed in as far as I could zoom in.  Taken out over the lake several miles away!  LOVE the zoom on my camera!


Jessica had a financial meeting to attend tonight, so she asked if I could take care of supper.  So I made a meatloaf, mashed potatoes and broccoli.  I tried to find the recipe with applesauce and a sweet sauce on top that I used to make when the kids were younger and still at home.  But, my taste buds were very disappointed!  This was definitely not the recipe that I remember!  I'll have to see if I have that recipe around somewhere in the cookbooks that are still at the parsonage.  The mashed potatoes were good, however!  :D


Tomorrow Jessica and I are going thrifting!  Have a great day!