Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!!!

As the this year comes to an end and we begin anew in 2009, I'd like to dedicate a little time to remember and give thanks to God for His marvelous provision, His mighty protection, and His magnificent purposes that were fulfilled in our lives during this year.

After 30 years of marriage, my youngest son became a senior this year! Where does the time go? I'm not a car-pooling mom any more; he now drives himself to school. Now this a milestone for me.

~Joel David~
I found out I was going to be a grandmother for the fourth time this year, and to our delight God blessed us with Cole Dillon, our first grandson!

(Isn't he precious?)

This past summer we witnessed God's provision in such an unexpected way when my husband was called away to work in Cedar Rapids, Iowa on a flood disaster recovery project for three months. Little did we know much we would need that bonus after Hurricane Gustav blew through Baton Rouge.

(Rick managed a little fun while he was there!)

The Lord was faithful to protect us during that storm, and even though a tree fell on our house, the Lord sent the right men at the right time to repair our home, and for this we give thanks.

My third son Joseph left to teach in Asia this year. Releasing him to fulfill his dreams and purpose was difficult. God's grace was sufficient once again. Joseph is now in Australia. He's goal is to see the world!

(I miss you so much Joseph!)

Jordan's check up at St. Jude was good once again. I never take for granted the fact that he is still in remission. God's purpose was fulfilled, and we gave thanks.

A prayer request was granted when I was invited to join a Beth Moore Breaking Free Bible study this year. God is continually opening doors and drawing me closer to Him as I yield myself to His plans and study His Word.

I’m also grateful for our first snow in so many years. What a delightful December surprise for us Louisianans!!

Finally, I got to know many of you out there more personally. My life has been so enriched ever since I began blogging. What a special sisterhood this has become in my life. I have learned so much from all of your experiences. I'm touched by your comments, and helped by your prayers. As Paris Twila sings, "How beautiful is the body of Christ"...

And now we get the chance to begin again in 2009. How exciting it is to imagine all that God has planned for us in this New Year.

In Revelations 21:5 we have this special promise:

"And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new."—

To think that the creator of Heaven and Earth has promises us that no matter where we have been, or what we have gone through, His power is there to “Make all things new”.

Faithfully he will guide our steps as we journey through this New Year. We can trust Him and have confidence that our future rests completely in His hands.

I am praying that God's greatest blessings will be poured out upon your life and your family in 2009.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

His Grace Is Enough

(Please remember to mute my music player!)

Today I've chosen a song from Hillsong's new CD, "This is our God". I bought the DVD for my son Jordan as a Christmas gift. Now we've been watching it day and night since he opened it on Christmas morning. Talk about some anointed music, this new release is really a powerful expression of praise to God. I pray you will feel the heart of God as you worship Him.

My son Joseph is now living in Sydney, only a short way from this awesome church. We are encouraging him daily to attend Hillsong while he is living there in Sydney. Please believe with us he will make it for a service! If I only had the opportunity, I would be there in a flash.

Hope you enjoy this song as much as I do.

Blessings to you my precious friends~
Join us to day over at Signs Miracles and Wonders for more great worship songs.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

Gracious Lord Jesus, today we begin our celebration of Christmas. The waiting of Advent is over. Now we focus on the incredible good news of your birth.We are amazed, Lord, that you came among us as a human being. Yet how much more astonishing that you were born in the humblest of settings, with a food trough as your first bed. All praise be to you, Lord Jesus, because you were willing to humble yourself for our sake.Thank you, dear Lord, for becoming one of us, for entering into our weakness and vulnerability. You were just like us, only without sin. You understand what it’s like when we feel small and insignificant, or when we feel unprotected and weak. All praise be to you, Lord Jesus, for your birth! We celebrate you this day and in the days to come. Merry Christmas, Lord! Amen.

(Mark D. Roberts)

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A Very Special Day

Today for my “In Other Words” post, I would like to dedicate a quote to someone I hold very near and dear to my heart, my wonderful husband!

Albert Einstein once said:

“Only a life lived for others is worth living.”

Over the last 32 years of my life I've had the privilege of witnessing this quote lived out right before my eyes. Of the many awesome qualities I could use to describe my husband, the gift of serving others would have to be number one.

When I tell people I've raised five sons, I must say many times I get eyebrows raised. People say, “How did you do it?” I can tell you; I never could have done it without all the help and support Rick has been to me.

I could go on and on naming all the ways he has made my life so much better, but you would tire from reading the list. The amazing part is they all would be true!

So today I would just like to say, “THANK YOU” Rick for being such a godly witness to me, a loving husband, a dedicated father to your children, and now even our grand-children. I truly appreciate the way you live your life for others.

I'd also like to wish you a Happy Birthday. Being born on Christmas Eve, your birthday often gets passed over by many, and you never complain. But at this Christmas season, I want you to know how much of a gift you have been to me.

I love you, and will forever give thanks for the day God brought you into my life.

Friday, December 19, 2008

A Special Announcement...

Come join me today over at the Internet Cafe, I have some great news for you!

And I could not pass up joining in on Friday Funnies. Still looking for that perfect gift for a man in your life? Here's some great suggestions:

Shopping Rules for Men's Gifts

Rule #1: When in doubt - buy him a cordless drill. It does not matter if he already has one. I have a friend who owns 17 and he has yet to complain. As a man, you can never have too many cordless drills. No one knows why.

Rule #2: If you cannot afford a cordless drill, buy him anything with the word ratchet or socket in it. Men love saying those two words. "Hey George, can I borrow your ratchet?" "OK. "By-the-way, are you through with my 3/8-inch socket yet?" Again, no one knows why.

Rule #3: If you are really, really broke, buy him anything for his car. A 99-cent ice scraper, a small bottle of deicer or something to hang from his rear view mirror. Men love gifts for their cars. No one knows why.

Rule #4: Do not buy men socks. Do not buy men ties. And never buy men bathrobes. I was told that if God had wanted men to wear bathrobes, he wouldn't have invented Jockey shorts.

Rule #5: You can buy men new remote controls to replace the ones they have worn out. If you have a lot of money buy your man a big-screen TV with the little picture in the corner. Watch him go wild as he flips, and flips, and flips.

Rule #6: Do not buy any man industrial-sized canisters of after shave or deodorant. I'm told they do not stink - they are earthy.

Rule #7: Buy men label makers. Almost as good as cordless drills. Within a couple of weeks there will be labels absolutely everywhere. Socks. Shorts. Cups. Saucers. Door. Lock. Sink. You get the idea. No one knows why.

Rule #9: Never buy a man anything that says "some assembly required" on the box. It will ruin his Special Day and he will always have parts left over. (now my husband LOVES directions!)

Rule #10: Good places to shop for men include Northwest Iron Works, Parr Lumber, Home Depot, John Deere, Valley RV Center, and Les Schwab Tire. (NAPA Auto Parts and Sears' Clearance Centers are also excellent men's stores. It doesn't matter if he doesn't know what it is. "From NAPA Auto, eh? Must be something I need. Hey! Isn't this a starter for a '68 Ford Fairlane? Wow! Thanks.")

Rule #10: Men enjoy danger. That's why they never cook - but they will barbecue. Get him a monster barbecue with a 100-pound propane tank. Tell him the gas line leaks. "Oh the thrill! The challenge! Who wants a hamburger?"

Rule #11: Men love chainsaws. Never, ever, buy a man you love a chainsaw. If you don't know why - please refer to Rule #7 and what happens when he gets a label maker.

Rule #12: It's hard to beat a really good wheelbarrow or an aluminum extension ladder. Never buy a real man a step ladder. It must be an extension ladder. No one knows why.

Rule #13: Rope. Men love rope. It takes us back to our cowboy origins, or at least The Boy Scouts. Nothing says love like a hundred feet of 3/8" manila rope. No one knows why.

Hope this was helpful ladies! Join us today over at The Homesteaders Heart for so more laughter.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Songs of the Season

Praise the Lord! For it is good to sing praises to our god; for it is pleasant, and praise is beautiful.Psalm 147:1

On this Thankful Thursday I'd like to share an except from a devotional I received yesterday. I pray it'll bless you as you discover why Christmas is characterized by a season of songs.

So today, I give thanks for all the many hymns that were written to bring praise and glory to our King!

If anything characterizes the Christmas season, it is music—especially George Frideric Handel's Messiah. But in addition to formal choral presentations, there are the traditional Christmas hymns sung by choirs in churches and by carolers in neighborhoods.

How did Christmas become the season of glorious songs? Besides the fact that music is woven into the fabric of the Old Testament, beginning with the song of celebration following the Exodus from Egypt (Exodus 15), the first Christmas was marked by psalm-singing and songs. Mary said what is now called the Magnificat when she visited Elizabeth (Luke 1:46-56), and Zechariah lifted his voice in praise when his son John (the Baptist) was born (Luke 1:67-79). And when Jesus' parents presented him in the temple, Simeon spoke a song of praise (Luke 2:29-32). All of these songs are crowned by the glorious words the angels declared to the shepherds (Luke 2:13-14).

This Christmas season, don't fail to lift your voice in song as you praise God for the indescribable gift of His Son, Jesus Christ.

My ready tongue makes haste to sing the glories of my heavenly King. Charles Wesley

Please join other grateful hearts today over at Grace Alone.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Without Description

This is the time of year when we are concerned about choosing just the right Christmas gifts to give to the special people in our lives. But let me ask you, "Have you ever received an indescribable gift?"

In the fullness of time God sent His only begotten Son, as a baby.


But the good news is that you don’t have to be able to describe Him to accept Him. You just have to be warmed & changed by Him. So make your journey to the manger with the shepherds. Take Him into your heart & accept God’s indescribable gift for you. If you have never recieved this wonderful gift why not accept Jesus today.

Join us today over at The 160 Acrewoods for more beautiful scriptures and graphics. You will be blessed, I promise!

Friday, December 12, 2008

And the Winners are...

And the Winners of the Holiday Expo Give-a-Way are:
Laurie Ann over at Magnolia Heartbeats, (oh Laurie, I was THRILLED to see you loved Happy when your name was chosen!)
Andrea at The Honest Woman. (another neat surprise, my friend Amy Bayliss' sister!) I hope you enjoy the scrapbook.
Thank you all for leaving a comment. I really enjoyed reading your favorite colognes.

Friday Funnies

OK ladies, this is the desk I'm getting for Christmas!!
Join us over at Homesteaders Heart for more silliness~
PS I'll be announcing my winner for the Holiday Expo Give-a-Way this evening!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Cajun Winter Wonderland!

“I love you, O Lord, my strength.The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,and I am saved from my enemies.”~ Psalm 18:1-3

On this Thankful Thursday the North Pole has come to Louisiana! Yes, you read that right. We woke up this morning to watch the most beautiful fluffy snowflakes falling down.

Oh my, what a rare treat for us here down south.

Believe it or not, the forecast for the weekend is in the mid 70's!

Here's a few pictures I took earlier, let it snow, let it snow!

Please join us today at Grace Alone to see what other grateful hearts are giving God praise for.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Our Everlasting Light

No matter what you are facing, we always have the promise Jesus will be near. He will never leave us, nor forsake us. As I was reading Tammy's post over at My Heart...His Words today, this truth was so clearly portrayed. Please take a moment to stop by and visit her as she shares a message, There is Always A Bright Side.

Today is Word Filled Wednesday, join us over at 160 Acrewoods

Monday, December 8, 2008

A Whole Lot More!

One of my very special blogging friends is hosting “In Other Words” over at I Will Take It Lord, All You Have to Give. I think anyone who has visited Lori's blog would agree that she is one very talented lady. Please join us today as we share our thoughts on this precious quote by Dr. Seuss.

Lori, I love your heart and the way you use your gifts to glorify the Lord. It's been such a joy to get to know you.

“Maybe Christmas,” he thought, “doesn't come from a store.” “Maybe
Christmas...perhaps...means a ‘little bit’ more.” Dr. Seuss

Oh, what a great classic and wonderful message the story of "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" portrays. This is a story that both young and old can never hear enough of. I have fond memories over the years of reading this book to my children and seeing how it captured their hearts! I love the message it tells about how greed and materialism is not what Christmas is all about. Maybe it’s not just about a ‘little bit’ more, but really about a ‘whole lot’ more!
Could words ever say how much Jesus really did for us?

This past weekend I got together with some special friends and family at my annual “Christmas Tea”. Even though it takes a lot of planning, this has been a tradition I have looked forward to for many years. This year Lori (our host today) used her talent to make our beautiful invitations. Now that’s its over and done, I'm already planning for next year’s tea in my mind. During Christmas time we all know how easy it is to get caught up with so many distractions, obligations, and deadlines. Without realizing it we can loose focus of the true meaning of what it is that we celebrate. Buying gifts and getting together with those we love is such a blessing, but in all we do, may we never forget Jesus our Messiah, who came to save us all.

I wanted to conclude by sharing a few special memories that we made this past weekend. Thank you all for taking time out of your busy schedules to join me today. I cherish our friendship and look forward to all that God has in store for us in 2009.

(please mute my music player before viewing pictures!)

Click to play Christmas Tea 2008
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Friday, December 5, 2008

Friday Funnies

With Christmas coming up, I thought I'd share some holiday humor. Hope you have a wonderful weekend.

And, OH...please sign up for my give a way below. The Cafe is hosting at Holiday Expo now!

An elementary school teacher asked her students to write the words to their favorite holiday songs. Here are some of the humorous lines she received:

Later on we'll perspire as we dream by the fire.
We three kings of porridge and tar...
He's makin a list, chicken and rice.
Noel. Noel. Barney's the king of Israel.
With the jelly toast proclaim...
Frosty the Snowman is a ferret elf, I say.
Sleep in heavenly peas.
You'll go down in listerine.
Oh, what fun it is to ride with one horse, soap and hay.
Oh, come, froggy faithful...
Join us today over at Homesteaders Heart for more funnies!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Sharing God's Goodness

Hi Ladies,

I've got two things going on today, first my Thankful Thursday post, and an exciting give-a-way at the Cafe. So I'll start out by giving God praise for the countless good things He continues to do in my life daily.

♥ I'm so thrilled to announce that on Tuesday the contractor and crew finally concluded our renovations! This has been a long drawn out project since Hurricane Gustav hit us on Sept. 1st. The Lord was so good to send us a group of Christian men to do this job. Now it's time to put our house back together once again.

♥ We had a wonderful Thanksgiving with our family, and as always it was so nice to see everyone. I'm still stuffed.

♥ I'm thankful that this coming weekend I'll have the opportunity to get together with many of my friends from back home. I'll be hosting my annual "Christmas Tea". This is a tradition I started over 12 years ago. It's always the perfect way to start our Christmas season. I promise to share some pictures.

♥ Finally, I'm grateful for all of you who take time to stop by and leave such kind comments. Gosh, it's been such a delight to get to know you.

Now, let me share with you what's going on over at the Internet Cafe. Today is the Cafe Holiday Expo and we'll get into the Christmas spirit by giving away some amazing gifts.
You'll need to hop over there and check it out!

I thought I'd give somethings that I really enjoy myself, cologne. Yes, I'm a person who just loves different scents. If you visited my home you would smell the aroma of candles or oils burning. You would also see a nice collection of colognes proudly displayed on my dresser.

One of my favorite colognes is Happy Heart by Clinique. I choose this as my give-a-way because it's light, fresh, and it puts me in a really good mood.

I also want to bless someone with a pre-made Christmas Scrapbook. This is made by Hallmark and it is really nice! I made one last year and it came out beautiful. This is perfect for those of you who love the look of a scrapbook, but just don't have the time to make one.

Now, to win these gifts, all you have to do in the comment section is let me know what your favorite cologne is. I'll enter your name in for a chance to win these gifts. Yes, it's that simple. I'll see you over at the Cafe!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Seizing the moment...

Sometimes God brings the strangest acquaintances into our lives. Instead of turning away, why not embrace the moment and make a difference in someone's life. Divine appointments may come when we least expect them.

Join us today over at the 160 Acrewoods today.

Please stop by tomorrow for a WONDERFUL GIVE-A-WAY, you won't want to miss this one!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

A Season To Love

As the holidays are now officially in gear, I have something that is on my heart and I'd like to share with you.

On Saturday November 29th Tammy over at My Heart...His Word's 13 year old son went to be with Jesus. This precious child had been battling brain cancer since 2002. It had been a long journey with many surgeries, chemo and radiation. Although I never met him personally, I felt like I knew Nick from just from reading Tammy's writings. If you have not visited her blog, you really need to. Each time I would go over to visit and check up on Nick, my plan was to leave a message to encourage Tammy, but it never failed, I was the one who came away encouraged by her steadfast faith and great love for Jesus. Oh how our prayers and thoughts go out to this wonderful family at this time.

Since my son was diagnosed with a brain tumor over 5 years ago our world has also been radically changed. While we are so grateful that Jordan is now in remission, we are still closely connected to many families who have either lost a child to some form of childhood cancer or continue to face the battle for a cure. As hard as this is sometimes, we count it a privilege to be able to witness first hand the Lord's amazing grace at work in the lives of these children and families.

The reason I'm writing about this today is because although Christmas is one of the most joyous seasons of the year, it can also be one of the most difficult for families like Tammy's and others that have experienced such great loss. It seems that during the holidays, fond memories and family traditions only tend to emphasize grief.

In the book of Galatians 6:2 Paul instructs us to,
“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”

I know for many of you it can be difficult to talk to people who may be going through times like this. You may feel like you just don't know what to say. I've been there myself many times and I've even avoided people because I felt at a loss to know how to encourage them. However, I have learned some things along the way, and I'd like to encourage you who may face a situation like this with a few things that might help you to minister and console.

First of all don't be afraid to acknowledge their loss and talk about their loved one by name. Although it may cause some tears, there is really no greater joy then knowing that your loved one is remembered. Talk about personal experiences you may have had with that person, or stories about their lives that you know. Remember, that person really is living on in heaven. They may be gone from our presence, but they are still very much alive and well.

Another way to bless a family who has experienced a loss is to give a gift in honor of their loved one. Find out what cause or organization they are their family may be involved with and give something in their name. This really makes the family feel like their passing was not in vain, and their lives are still having an impact by helping others.

Finally, be sensitive to the Holy Spirit. He is the One who will lead you, guide you, and give you the the words to speak. Remember, we are the Body of Christ. We are the hands of Christ reaching out to help lift up this hurting world.

...The Spirit the Lord is upon us to bind up the broken hearted. (Isa. 61)

May your Christmas season be a blessed one...full of the Love, Joy and Peace that comes from knowing Christ the Savior.
Thanks for taking time to stop by today.

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Sanctuary of Marriage

Today is Marriage Monday. Andrea over at Embracing Him is our hostess. I look forward each month to participating, but I'm still in the middle of some major renovations since Gustav! We are almost finished, praise God.

Anyhow, today's topic is so important. Hopefully you'll take time to check out some great posts on this topic.

I was especially blessed as I read E-Mom's. She always delivers such an informative information. I appreciate her ministry here in the blogosphere. Stop by, you'll be blessed and enlightened for sure. Thanks E-Mom!

Have a blessed day today!