Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. Matthew 10:32
Good morning from beautiful New Orleans! It is amazing how fast a few days go by when I’m on vacation. Maybe it’s because I’m super busy or maybe because I’m having a wonderful time. Last night I took a boat tour on the Natchez. No matter how many times my southern accent tries to enunciate this name correctly, I just can’t seem to get it. Lol. Let’s just say, I don’t blend. When I speak, it sounds like I just came off Scarlet O’Hara’s Plantation, Tara.
The Natchez was wonderful. I might have been the only passenger without a family, so I had the opportunity to listen to the jazz music, study my school work, enjoy the view, and eat some of the most delicious food I’ve ever enjoyed. Now, that is something good. The Natchez came back early for a fire works show. As I was wandering to a spot to call my Lift driver, I saw Cafe Beignet. Now, I have been wanting to try beignets since I arrived. I picked up my warm beignets and headed back to my hotel room. The Lift driver asked me “what smells so delicious?” Well, let me just say, Beignets are a treat from heaven. I’ve never experienced anything like them. They were delicious and worth the wait. I may have to do a little extra walking today and every day for the rest of my life.
At the conference yesterday and again today, I am reviewing resumes. This is my second year serving at a national conference in this capacity. I think I may have learned more than the people visiting my table. Yesterday, I spoke with a man about my age looking to change careers, a young man still going to school and thinking about the future, and a doctor who needed to break free from her university job. Helping others is a great way to learn. Plus, I enjoy hearing their stories. I pray that I was able to provide a little guidance.
After lunch I took a tour of the Biomedical District in New Orleans and sat by another planner from Bermuda. He was very interesting and I was able to share my Christian beliefs in casual conversation. I think God allowed me to come here to hear different life stories. I’ve heard many and I’m a better person from the experience.
I have a packed schedule today, so I will close for now. Have a wonderful day and embrace the opportunity to share something good. God bless you.
And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren. For with God nothing shall be impossible. And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.
Luke 1:26-38 KJV
Happy Tuesday after Christmas Day! According to Wikipedia, today is Boxing Day, which is a secular holiday in Europe where the banks are closed. It is also known as St. Stephens’s Day on the liturgical calendar, which is the second day of Christmastide (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boxing_Day).
I hope your Christmas Eve and Christmas Day celebrations were wonderful. We celebrated Christmas Eve by riding through town and enjoying the Christmas lights. Then, we attended the midnight Christmas Eve service at our church. The service began at 10 pm with Christmas carols, and handbells. The church service followed. We have many gifted singers and musicians in our church. The music brought tears to my eyes.
Then, the sermon touched my heart. It was about how God uses ordinary people, like us, to do extraordinary things. Mary was a young girl. She didn’t live in a palace, but God chose her to bring His son into the world. I have often thought of how hard it must have been emotionally, and how others must have mocked and scorned her. Joseph didn’t have an easy path either. His fiancé was expecting and the baby wasn’t his. Yet, he cared for her and Jesus by stepping up to the call. I also, thought of the young boy, David, who in faith fought and killed Goliath. Jeremiah was probably under the age of 25 when he answered God’s call. He said “behold, I cannot speak; for I am a child” (Jeremiah 1:6). Yet, God gave Jeremiah the tools he needed. So, when God calls us, we also need to step up. If God only used people who didn’t have struggle in their life, why would anyone else have faith? We would probably believe we could never measure up. The world might be about keeping up with Joneses, but God is different. Remember, on Palm Sunday people were expecting a worldy King riding in on a white stallion, but Jesus rode in on a donkey.
The service ended at midnight. As is the tradition in our church, candles were passed out to everyone attending the service. After communion, the candles were lit from the aisle. Each person lit the candle of the person beside them. The Church lights were turned out. Kneeling in candlelight, everyone sang Silent Night. While the service is past my bedtime and I know what to expect, every year I am glad I attended. Attending the service with my husband was my favorite Christmas gift.
Christmas morning, after very little sleep, my husband treated our family to Christmas brunch. His parents, our children and grandson were with us. It’s always exciting watching the excitement of Christmas through the eyes of a child.
I look forward to reading about your Christmas celebrations. If you are working today, or returning gifts, be patient and kind. Be the person who lights up the room with God’s love. God bless you!
Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.
Isaiah 6:8 KJV
Good morning! Christmas is almost here. I’m busy cleaning house and preparing for Christmas Day celebrations. I have one child and grandchild asleep in our Family Room and one child traveling in this morning. My brother and sister who live in central Florida are traveling tomorrow. I ask that you pray with me this morning for all the people traveling during the holidays.
I’m a follower and a reader of his blog. I especially enjoy the history aspect. However, this image touched my heart. I would dare to guess that every person who reads this blog has either a family member and/or a friend who serves or has served in the armed forces. I have many people in my ancestry who have served. I have retired uncles, and my father-in-law is also retired from the military. I have cousins who have and are currently serving. My son-in-law serves in the National Guard, and my nephew recently began serving in the army. My supervisor at work is a retired Marine. I have had several retired military people who have worked under my supervision. Some of my closest friends have served in the military. Stop for a minute and just think of all the people you know who have served, or are currently serving. Maybe you are one them.
Sometimes we take for granted what this means for us. Sometimes we don’t stop to think about what these men and women are going through or have gone through, when we should. I don’t know about you, but I’ve become desensitized by commercials that play repeatedly. Some soldiers are away from home and family this Christmas. Some parents have left their children behind to serve. Some parents have said goodbye to their children, who decided to serve when they were barely old enough to leave home. Some have already served and have memories of loved ones who were killed during service. Some we see every day.
Today, I ask you to stop for a few minutes and remember the men and women of the armed forces. USO have Facebook pages that provide information on where to send gifts, letters and texts. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to let someone know they are loved. Then, visit my friend’s blog and tell him how much you appreciate him. I’m so thankful to have come to know him through his posts. What a blessing! You don’t have to wait until Memorial Day or Veteran’s Day. You can show you care all year. Trust me when I say that you will receive blessings beyond your imagination! If you are reading this and you are in the military, I appreciate all you are doing!
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven. Ecclesiastes 3:1
Happy Wednesday! Please excuse my oops from yesterday. I’m embarrassed to say that I mixed up my days.
Have you ever felt torn between being a good Christian and being who the world wants you to be? Have you been guilty of trying to justify today’s watered down standards with the Bible? Do you have a battle in your mind between what is right (what the news media says is right or what the Church says is right)? If you said yes to any one of these questions, it is totally understandable. In today’s society it seems like anything goes. On top of that television news seems to say whatever you want to do is okay. We all know deep down that isn’t the case, but how can you truly know what is acceptable behavior? It’s simple. Study God’s word, pray and follow his teachings. No one is going to be perfect, but I do not know of one thing that can go wrong if you are following the teachings of the Bible and praying. I’m not going to lie to you. Sometimes it is harder to do what is right, but the rewards are much greater.
Seek God’s will in all you do and he will direct your path. Proverbs 3:6
Happy Wednesday! Today was my grandson’s first day of preschool. Leaving him at the school so scared really brought back the memories from when my children were young.
Sometimes as adults we are scared too. Have you ever felt like you were searching for something and just couldn’t decide which way to go? Do you ever feel like you are running around in circles never making any progress? Proverbs 3:6 says that when we seek God’s will in all life’s matters, he will direct our path. I never really understood that verse until recently. I kept wondering around in the dark looking for direction, always unhappy. Whenever I started studying the Bible more, I knew what I was supposed to do. The more I did what I was supposed to do, the more he sent me to do. The more I did, the happier I became. It’s one of those cases when you know, that you know, that you know. No matter how tough the road might look, you know that you need to take it. On top of all that happiness, all my relationships are better. Did I change along the way, or did God change things for me as I followed his directions? I would say it was probably a little bit of both. That’s good too!
Today, I encourage you to seek out God in everything you do, and follow his directions. You won’t be sorry! God bless you!
He satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things. Psalm 107.9
Happy Thursday! It’s a great time to practice forgiveness.
Have you ever felt empty? Have you felt like no matter what you do, you can’t find happiness? Is being content something you can’t seem to wrap your mind around? Are you an overachiever, a workaholic, a perfectionist or something similar? Do you feel you have to fill every moment of the day with an activity? Do you dread quietness? I know how you feel. There is only one thing that can fill that hole, God. You can try everything you can think of, but I promise nothing will fill that hole but God. Start your day with God and put God first all day long, and he will fill the emptiness in your soul.
We can’t always see where the road leads, but God promises there is something better up ahead we just have to trust him. Psalm 56:3
Happy Wednesday! It’s a great day to Use Your Gifts to Change the World! So, what will you do?
Do you ever feel like you are unable to make positive change? Do you feel like the world is too big? Then, I have good news. The smallest of changes are viral in the scheme of changing the world. Whenever you do something as simple as smiling at someone having a bad day, the results are beneficial, and that’s not all. Positive changes grow exponentially. Yesterday, I actually heard a very nice lady, who collects items for children in need, say that she had so many people donate that she had to create a new list of items to prevent sending volunteer donors away. She was also taking overflow donations to other agencies. Isn’t that great! That’s how it should be. When we work together to help society, government doesn’t have to. As I’ve said so many times before, changing the world doesn’t have to involve donations or money. You can smile, give a friend a hug, tell the manager of a restaurant or store about an employee who is doing a good job, leave a note, and the list goes on and on. There is no limit to what YOU can do.
As you go out into the world today, start at home and radiate. Make a difference everywhere you go. God bless you.
It’s Try Something New Tuesday! A few weeks ago I began a new health journey through Noom Coach. This seems to be working for me. I just started week three and I’ve lost about 15 pounds. I’ve also been making healthier food choices and exercising more. Every day I try something new, which keeps the program fresh. I don’t just mean that I try new recipes or exercises, but I try new ways to conquer cravings and other temptations.
Life is similar. Sometimes we get in a rut of going through a day-to-day routine, which can wreak havoc on our relationships and our self-esteem. We can get so caught up in what we are focused on that we lose who we are and what we believe in. At the end of the day we don’t feel like we have enough time to enjoy life. We may not even think we are worthy of God’s love. Always remember that God thinks you are beautiful. You are his child and he loves you.
One way to prevent burnout and getting caught up in every day life routines is to look at your tasks differently. Noom Coach teaches to make a list of the “have to’s” and the “want to’s” in your life. Then mix match combinations on the list. I know this was intended for food and exercise, but why couldn’t you use it in general life. For example, if taking the kids to ball practice is on your “have to” list, and paying it forward is on your “want to” list, why not pick up other kids going to practice on the way and relieve another parent. If you have been wanting to read your Bible, but you can’t find time before or after work, take your lunch to work with you and find somewhere quiet to read. There are endless possibilities for work and home.
Remember, variety is the spice of life. I can’t wait to read what you plan to try. God bless you.
And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive. Matthew 21:22
Today, I am so excited and wish to thank Christi B. author of “Women Who Inspire” for spotlighting Hisperfecttiming! Christi spotlights inspirational women who make a positive impact. This is what she wrote on Friday.
Isn’t that great! Wow! I’m so blessed that Christi thought of Hisperfecttiming! I wish that I could take the credit, but God works through my life and work. I’m so thankful to Christi and all readers and followers! I pray you are all blessed as much as I am and more!
I saw a Facebook post this morning that caught my attention. It said “if you woke up this morning with all that you prayed for yesterday, where would you be.” Where would YOU be?
I’ve noticed that many people get caught up in the “how to” of prayer. I understand fully, because I’ve been there. I have been to prayer classes, where books have been passed out on what to pray for in various situations. I have read books trying to understand how to pray publicly and what to pray. I’ve listened closely and memorized prayers that I thought were especially nice, I’ve asked for feedback. While some of this was helpful, none was enough. I would pray freely in private, but publicly I would choke. My mind would go blank. Have you ever been there? I am still growing spiritually and I’m in no way an expert, but I have some ideas on the subject of prayer.
First, in order to pray effectively, you must have faith. Prayer is simply talking to God. I talk to God like I talk to you, my friends. How can you effectively pray, or talk to God, if you don’t believe? If you are praying and you don’t believe in God, to whom are you talking or trying to impress? God knows your heart. you must first trust and believe in him.
Second, as I stated above, prayer is talking to God. No matter where you are, or what you are doing, you can talk to God. It can be silently. No one has to know your private conversations. I pray throughout the day. I can’t imagine going an entire day without prayer. I’ve recently decided that instead of speaking privately to others, I would just begin and end with God. I’ve also found it especially helpful to pray for people who are hurtful. Ask God to bless them. This sounds a little strange, but I promise it works every time. I sometimes pray that the right people will be brought into a loved one’s or friend’s life, who will bring that person closer to God and help them to make good decisions. We just can’t be all things to all people.
Third, when you pray publicly, just talk to God and don’t worry about impressing others. That’s easier said than done when you are put on the spot, right? Take the focus off of you, and put the focus on God and helping others. Sometimes a brief pause to gather your thoughts will help, too. You should pray about something related to why you are with whoever you are with and what you are doing. For example, are you at a mealtime meeting? Pray about making good decisions and your thankfulness for the food.
I once saw a handy guide to prayer. The guide used the word — BLESS.
The way this works is, you think of at least one thing in each category to pray about. If you know in advance that you will be leading prayer, you can write it down. If not, you will probably be able to come up with something quickly. I also jot down names of people who are sick, so that I can include them in my prayers.
Fourth, I always thank God first. I try not to just continuously ask for something. I am truly blessed and thankful. I pray regularly before each meal, in the mornings before work, and at night before I go to sleep. From time to time I suffer from insomnia and talk to God until I doze off. However, regular prayer does not keep me from talking to God throughout the day. My husband reminds me every day to enjoy my present. He means the present moment. Living in the present is something to be thankful for, as well.
Fifth, I have heard that God loves to hear his word. I think this originates from Jesus using God’s words when dealing with the devil. So, I read and meditate on my Bible, and try to do the same. It’s a great way to glorify God. As Third Day sings “the grass will wither and flowers will fall, but the word of our God will last forever.” I also pray before bible study, my classes, my blogs, and church, because I want to have an understanding of God’s word and be able to reflect it in my life.
Sixth, don’t forget to repent. Admit to and ask God for forgiveness of all the mistakes you made throughout each day, and then forgive others. I usually ask for forgiveness after I thank God for my blessings, but you decide what works for you. I also send up prayers as soon as I realize I’ve done something wrong, because by the end of the day I may forget. I’ve decided that forgetfulness that comes with age is also a blessing sometimes.
Seventh, ask God to help you with temptations. Trust me when I say, I have many. I pray for help with temptations all day long. Isn’t it great to know that we don’t have to fight the devil alone! God is always by my side.
Finally, the more you pray, the more comfortable you will be with praying. Similarly, the more you pray publicly, the more comfortable you will be with leading public prayer. There all types of tips, books and ideas to follow on how to pray, but I encourage you to keep it simple. God loves you and knows where your heart is.
A righteous man who walks in his integrity – how blessed are his sons after him. Proverbs 20:7
It’s Forgiveness Thursday. Of course, we can and should take time every day to forgive ourselves and others as Christ has forgiven us. The title is just a reminder to stop and get right with God. When we refuse to forgive others, we only hurt ourselves. So let the pain sail away today, and turn to God for help.
When I think back to when my children were growing up, I often regret not being there for them and providing them more. It was always my dream to be a stay home mother like my mom, which is not always possible in today’s world. So, I worked.
My daughter has told me that I came home from work and took my bad day out on them. I hate the way that sounds, but it is probably true. I have asked God and my children to forgive me. What happened to me and might have happened or may be happening to you is I was working long hours, going to graduate school, taking care of the house and trying to be a mom. Being a mom included taking the children to dance, band, or whatever else they had going on, ensuring homework was done, feeding the children and making sure they had showers and clean clothes, and also making sure they went to church. That is quite a bit to juggle. My husband helped but he was working two jobs and was exhausted. So, like many people, we did the best we could. Then, time slipped up on us and our children left home.
Is there ever enough time? Sometimes I think God keeps us busy, so we won’t dwell on the passing time, because one day we have to let our children leave and find their way. I tried like crazy to slow down the clock, but our children still grew up. So, what I’m trying to say is, if you feel like your best wasn’t enough when you were raising your children, quit torturing yourself because most people feel the same way. We all do the best we can. The good news is you may be given another opportunity to make a difference with your grandchildren.
If you are a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle or just someone who influences a child, teach them Bible verses, prayers, and Bible stories. Take them to church and church functions. Answer their questions and lead by example. The mind of a child is quick and absorbs everything around. If you want to make a difference in the world, start here. Guess what? Your marriage and family will be blessed along the way.
Today, as you forgive yourself and others, be a positive Christian influence on the children in your life. God bless you.