Click on all pictures in the sidebar to get the most from this blog. Pastor's Corner : Submit questions for three pastors - The Christian: Specific traits found in the true Christian - Abuse: An ongoing discussion of all forms of abuse - God's House: A study of God's demands on the church body - and many more.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Darlene's Daily

If we keep looking behind us at the things we did wrong, we won't see the chances ahead of us to do some things right.

'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'

As I left the grocery store, I noticed two little kids, maybe six or seven years old, selling candy bars in

front of the store to raise money for their school band. 

"I'll buy a chocolate bar on one condition," I said to the boys. "You eat it for me."

I bought one and handed the candy back to one of the boys.
He shook his head. "I can't," he said.
"Why not?"

Looking me in the eye, he responded gravely,

"I'm not supposed to take candy from strangers."

'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'

Let happiness be your companion today!

'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'

Priest and Pastor

A priest and pastor from the local parishes were standing by the side of the road holding up a sign that read, "The End is Near! Turn yourself around now before it's too late!"

They planned to hold up the sign to each passing car. As the first driver sped past, he yelled, "Leave us alone...we don't believe in that religious stuff!"

From around the curve they heard screeching tires and a big splash. One clergyman said to the other, "Do you think we should just put up a sign that says, 'Bridge Out' instead?"

'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'

Think Spring

Flowers always make people better, Happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine,

Food and medicine for the soul.~*~Luther Burbank

'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::'::*::


A father is in church with three of his young children, including his five year old daughter.

As was customary, he sat in the very front row so that the children could properly witness the service.

During this particular service, the minister was performing the baptism of a tiny infant. The little five

year old girl was taken by this, observing that he was saying something and pouring water over

the infant's head.

With a quizzical look on her face, the little girl turned to her father and asked,

"Daddy, why is he brainwashing that baby?"

 
 
Thanks Darlene,
 
God loves you,
 
Debbie

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Healthcare bill - death to the individual

I have to be careful how "depressing" I sound when I discuss the Healthcare fiasco.  I have a friend who is "scared out of her mind" that as she ages she will be denied lifesaving healthcare.   

I hope all of my friends that suffer with this fear understand that "As Christians, our lives are in the hand of God."  The Bible says that "he orders our lifespan - and no one can change it!"  That my friends should be our greatest comfort.

However, this post is for my friends who want to dismiss the effects that will trickle down to the individual.  Since I just experienced what could happen....I think it's time to share the very real tragedy of this bill.

Christmas eve I was coming up the basement step and heard a pop in my leg. Since I've lost the large tendon in my left leg, I was familiar with that sound. I went to an Orthopedic Surgeon who confirmed that the tendon was ruptured. He suggested massive surgery that included cutting bones, moving other tendons, tightening muscles and ligaments and being off that leg for up to three months. I agreed - otherwise the foot would deteriorate and I might not be able to walk as I age. The surgery was scheduled for late January.

I had a checkup with my MD early in January and the "assistant" gave me a lecture about elevated blood pressure. She examined my belly before doing anything else and told me I had a hernia and would need surgery. She also did a pap smear. After I was nervous and worried she then took my blood pressure. It was 135 over 90 and she wanted it down to 120 over 80. I explained that my mother who has memory issues stayed with me from Thanksgiving until Christmas and insisted on eating out - a lot - at fast food restaurants. "Give me at least a month to bring this down. But...remember, I have white coat syndrome and my blood pressure always elevates when I see a doctor." She was uninterested and only agreed to wait a month after leaving the room and getting permission from my regular doctor.

One week before I was to have surgery on my foot, I called to cancel the appointment for a recheck of my blood pressure. Within one hour my orthopedic surgeon called and cancelled my surgery because I had high blood pressure and was not fit for the surgery "according to my MD". I was furious. It took a full week of fussing and running around to work it out. I knew my doctor was wrong and several other "doctor friends", agreed that my blood pressure was not too high for surgery. I took a friend with me to talk to the assistant. My friend and I were amazed when she actually admitted that they weren't as worried about my health as they were their files. "If an agent checked our files and found out your blood pressure in this office was this high and you had a stroke or something...we might be liable." My friend tried to discuss White Coat syndrome with her, but she dug her feet in the ground.

Even though I went to the fire station for five days and my blood pressure was in the 120/80 range they still would not give their okay for the surgery unless I took blood pressure medicine. Since I was in great pain with my foot, I agreed but only to a low dose. They prescribed 5 m. twice a day. After a lot of prayer, and because I knew I was right....after two days of the medication I worked my way down to only 1/2 a pill once a day. I was on the medication for three weeks waiting for my surgery.

After surgery I was admitted to a room in the hospital. I had to stay two extra days because......my blood pressure was too low. On the day of my surgery it dipped to 60/40 and they had to give me a shot to bring me around. I was so out of it I couldn't respond. The day after surgery a hospital cardiologist saw what I was taking and was furious. "I'm here to help you regulate low blood pressure and you are taking this! Don't you ever take this again!"

Here's my point! When politicians or boards of detached people set standards and rules for your healthcare - problems like this will be the norm. The reason healthcare should be personal is because we are all different and we must be treated as individuals. When doctors are more worried about charts and numbers than they are about individuals - the patient suffers. Watch out too when doctors share - limited information.  My surgeon had to trust the MD but also was given limited information.  I wonder what my MD's response would have been if I had slipped into a coma?

That's why I believe that this bill MUST be repealed.  We don't need some uneducated flunky in DC telling our doctors what medication we should have.  "Oh be reasonable Debbie, it won't be a flunky - it will be a doctor."

A doctor may design the template for what's required, but a flunky will be sitting at the computer plugging in the information. 

And...do you know what you call a doctor that finishes last in his class? 

You call him Doctor!   - o-o-o-o scary!

God loves you,

Debbie

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Mr. Biden....A better Country begins at Home

This week presented a few more complications as I struggle to recover from my surgery.  For several days I couldn't work so I spent the time alone with God and praying for our country.  Like many of you I am terribly discouraged that Washington chose to take away our freedoms. 

While I am encouraged about the awakening of the American people through organizations like the tea party movement and teachers like Glenn Beck; I realize that if we do turn this country around it will be a long and difficult fight.  Are you prepared for a lengthy fight?  Are you prepared to let that fight begin in your own home?  Only when our homes promote intelligence, hard work, Christian values and high class will we become a productive and successful country.  It's time to stop promoting "dumb and dumber" and start requiring intelligence.

When I investigate the times that this country seemed to be safer and more prosperous, there's one trait that stands out.  When America had a solid base of Christian homes where children were trained to be respectful and hard working - unrest and social problems seemed to ease. 

There has always been an element of delinquency.  There has always been crime and probably always will be.  But...when decency and Christian values are promoted....our country does much better.  When we take those rules of "civility" out of our culture, America takes a dive as a whole.

So how do we stop that?  Raise better children that will take over in 20 years - while you work on your own generational problems.  Raise Children like 14-year-old McKay Hatch.  He sponsors a nationwide "no cussing" campaign.  He is working hard to bring civility to the speech in this country. http://www.nocussing.com/

This week the Vice President proved my point.  If we don't have leaders that can celebrate a victory without using inappropriate "trashy" language, how can we expect to appear "intelligent" or "classy" to other nations.  More importantly, if our own government officials flippantly talks trash how can any parent across the country demand that their own children take the high road?  It was inexcusable and gives you a window into how low this administration has taken our country.

I don't use that type of trashy talk in private and I am appalled at anyone that uses it in public.  Why?  First because I believe the Bible speaks against it.  Second because the Bible also asks me to "think on good things".  Third, because it proves that the person using the language isn't smart.  With millions of words in the English language it says something about your intelligence when you can't express yourself properly.  Only someone with a limited vocabulary would choose a trashy word when he/she has access to other words to portray his feelings.

So...to Mr. Biden, I'll simply say this. 

"I think you are chimerical and fatuous if you believe that the American people are not perspicacious enough to see the dense submerged delinquency within your cranium.  Your obtuse and stolid attitude confirms your vacuous regard for your position, our children or America's reputation around the globe.  To prevent further disgrace I am resolute and immutable in my desire to see your administration terminated."

Enough said....

God loves you,

Debbie

Chimerical:  indulging in unrealistic fancies

Fatuous:  silly, foolish, idiotic

Obtuse:  slow to understand or perceive; dull or insensitive

Dense: suggest obtuseness, or an irritating failure to understand quickly or to react intelligently

Stolid:  Apathetic showing little or no emotion or sensitivity

Perspicacious: having keen judgment or understanding

Precocious: developed or matured to a point beyond that which is normal for the age.  gifted, bright.

Discriminate:  to recognize the difference between

Vacuous:  having or showing lack of intelligence, interest or thought.  Stupid

Resolute:  having or showing a fixed firm purpose

Immutable:  Never changing or varying

Saturday, March 20, 2010

I just don't understand!

I've received a lot of e-mails and phone calls lately where friends and family are concerned about our country and our spiritual and personal lives.  The most prominent phrase is....."but, I just don't understand."

I'm probably more like my sons in that "I want to understand"....but my mother has written a song that is biblically correct.  She wrote it almost 50 years ago when it seemed we could understand a little more...but it is especially relevant today.

The song is titled "I don't Need To Understand".  I hope you will go to my parents website Christian Ministries and click on the music tab so you can listen to this song.  I don't need to Understand 

If you like the song you can send them an e-mail requesting the CD or you can go to my store and purchase it through paypal.  The Store

Here are the comforting words to the song.

I don't Need to Understand by Maggie Crocker

Sunshine comes and Sunshine goes,

then shadows linger.
Darkness fills the night with mystery and care
but within my heart a gentle voice reminds me
Fear no evil Jesus said, for I'll be there.

Chorus
I don't need to understand,
I just need to hold his hand
And I don't need to ever ask the reason why.
For I know he'll make a way
Through the night and through the day.
I don't need to understand,
I just need to hold his hand.


Life is like a mighty sea
So tossed and driven
Billows rise within the heart of every man
Storms so many times they leave the heart with questions
That you don't need to understand,
You just need to hold his hand.


When my life down here is through
and Jesus calls me
To my home up there upon the golden shore
I'll look back and I'll review the past that lay before me
But I won't care to understand, anymore.

 
Thanks, Mom.
 
God loves you,
 
Debbie

Friday, March 19, 2010

Healthcare - Buyer beware

Since I've been recuperating, I haven't written about the current political fiasco.  I had planned to do a lot of writing today but then didn't feel good.  I took my pain medicine and settled back to watch a little TV.  Obama was on Fox doing his thing - once again another speech. 

Most of the time it's hard for me to stomach his long winded deceptions, but given the importance of this week-end I decided to listen a little longer.  I was reminded of a situation I was in several years ago.  A company approached me about doing a consolidation loan.  I met with the agent and listened to him talk for over 30 minutes.  Finally, I asked for the paper work.  Unfortunately for the agent I had worked over 5 years for an attorney.  I can recognize legal jargon and usually can decipher it's meaning. 

The agent was uncomfortable when I asked for the paper work.  He tried to tell me it couldn't be printed until we plugged in my name and particulars.  He told me everything would change once my numbers were in.  I continued to insist that I wasn't concerned about the numbers but only the rhetoric in the contract.  After a lot of discussion and my decision to gather my things and prepare to leave, he finally decided to show me the contract.

That's when the lies really began.  When I pointed out a section that stated special fees and the ability to raise the interest rate...his response was, "Oh don't worry about that.  That section won't apply to you."

When I pointed out the section that said they had the ability to sell my financial information to any company they deemed proper.....his response was, "I'll talk to the manager after you sign and we'll take that out."

When I pointed out the section that said if I missed one payment by just two weeks they could file to take my home....his response was, "That's only for others with a lower credit rating, that would not happen in your case."

Do you blame me for asking where his mask was?  After all, if he was going to rob me - he should wear a mask.  I gathered my things and walked out.

Just three months ago I was considering purchasing the "Magic Jack" to save money on our phone bills.  But....when I read the contract I found out that they would be allowed to connect my computer to any sales call they wanted and there was nothing I could do about it.  My phone could ring off the hook with sales calls from absolutely every company in the country and I wouldn't be able to stop it.  My financial information would be in their hands, they would have my social security information and they would bill my credit card with no way for me to dispute overages or extra charges.

Who in their right mind would sign on for that.....Millions have signed on and lived to regret it. 

That my friend is what Mr. Obama is trying to sell you. That is why Nancy Pelosi said "Just pass the bill and then we will all find out what's in it."  Like a greasy shoddy salesman they are trying to get you to trust them... rather than to investigate the merits of the bill. 

I am against this bill.  I don't believe the arguments for it.  They just don't ring true.  I know there will be consequences that we will regret.  I am positive it will destroy our economy.

How can I be so sure?  I've read some of the bills along the way and that's what these people do.  They hide their real intent in legal jargon and half truths.  It's who they are.  It's how they work.  And...the biggest factor is that once this is done, the proponents of this bill will be long gone.  When it's in full force, they will have moved on and we will be the ones dealing with the effects. 

Add to that the horrible problems with the government controlling school loans.  Our children and grandchildren will be told which schools they can attend.  Schools won't be allowed to teach certain subjects or promote certain beliefs.  That control will come in the form of determining which funds or which students will receive loans.  If your child can't get a loan for a private college - he will be forced to attend one that the government deems "proper".    AND...you the private citizen won't be able to donate your money to schools that break the rules.  Talk about taking away our rights as Christians to promote Christian schools and Universities. 

The legal term "Buyer Beware" applies heavily to this bill.  If we don't work as hard as we can to stop it we deserve the pain that follows.  And if it passes, if we don't work just as hard to remove it - we deserve the pain that follows. 

It's time to pray and it's time to get busy.  I have been praying all day that God would forgive this country for its neglect and to give us a second chance to bring America back to God.  I hope you will join me in that prayer.

God loves you,

Debbie

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Scared out of your mind????

What are you facing today?  Are you afraid of anything in your life?  If you are....you're normal.  Don't let pious Christians make you think that "good" Christians aren't afraid.  Anyone - Christian or not - will be afraid of the unknown.  Some people choose not to share their fear.  Some people think that if you ignore it and don't talk about it that somehow that summons up the power of God and takes care of the problem.  Some people shake with fear on the inside while putting on a smiley face mask for the outside.

With Ron losing his job and me going through reconstructive foot surgery, I know how fear feels.  Today I had a meltdown.  There has just been too much coming too fast.  I sat with my foot up in the air, crying from the pain and wondering what the future holds.

Several years ago I had the great privilege to listen to Dr. Dick Foth at a writer's conference.  I purchased CD's of the 5 services he did.  I've listened to those services many times and today I felt led to listen to session #3.  God is truly wonderful when he whispers instructions in your ears.  With tears flowing down my cheeks Dr. Foth told about the fear he experienced when he was told he had cancer.  The nurse called him when he was out of town and told him what he had (cancer) but not how bad or what the procedure would be.  "For four days I was gripped by fear.  The fear of the unknown was so disconcerting that it almost paralyzed me for four days."  He is now without cancer but for those four days he was filled with fear.

Dr. Foth continued..."I was surprised by it because I'm not genuinely a fearful person, but fear showed up.  It's not supposed to.  I've got like college degrees and I've studied and spent a lot of money for it.  One should be free from fear when you've studied and paid a lot of money for it.  Clearly that wasn't working.  And then of course I had been following Jesus for like 50 years so that should take care of it right there.  But for some reason it wasn't taking care of it for those four days so then guilt - its ugly twin showed up.  Now I was being tag teamed by guilt and fear.  Have any of you been there?  Do you know how that feels?"

Thank God for this message.  I identified and for one hour Dr. Foth was able to touch the deepest part of my soul.  His humor and his compassion soothed me.  There were two beautiful sections that really helped.  I hope they will help you today.

He quoted Joshua 1:6 with the following:

"I wondered, what does God say?  Are there people in the Bible that loved God and were scared?  And I started looking and what do you know....If you have your Bible turn to Joshua 1:6 .....Joshua is the go to guy.  Moses has led them for all these years and Joshua is the person who is getting the hand off......He's the one who's not scared......In 1:6 listen how he talks to Joshua.  Be strong and courageous because you will inherit.....be strong....be courageous....then you will be prosperous....He just keeps saying be strong and courageous over and over.

In the middle of all the instructions to be strong talk, he says....DO not be terrified.  Do not be discouraged.  Now he's not just saying be ye not nervous, he's saying don't be scared out of your mind.  Why would he say that to Joshua unless there was the possibility that God's man could be scared out of his mind?

And then there's Elijah.  God's man who calls out the king.  He has a big day calling down rain from heaven.  But when Jezebel sends him a message that he is dead meat - he shakes with fear and runs for his life.  I love this story....After he ran away and the angels fed him, an angel woke him and said, Get up and eat for the journey is too much for you..... I love this story.  How can a guy go from being God's instrument - so engaged, so spirit filled and overflowing, so expressive of the character and thought and intent of God....How can he go from that and in a nano second run because he's afraid.  Battle fatigue.  It may be spiritual warfare, but it's still warfare.  You get tired and worn out and it makes you scared.  When you get scared, it is disorienting, it is disconnecting, it is disenchanting, it is disabling, it is diseasing, it is dysfunctional....it just disses you."

That spoke to me.  It's not whether or not we are scared.  It's not about how we present ourselves to others.  The real test is what we do with our fear.

Are you about to face a giant?  Are you sitting in a heap of ashes scraping your boils with broken pottery?  Are you facing a problem that will not go down easy?  Are you scared out of your mind?

It's okay.  God understands.  I don't know where you are today but for some of us the journey is just too much for us.  We need the nutrition and power that comes from rest and from filling up with God's word and the fellowship of encouragers. 

Love overwhelms fear.  The love of our family, the love of our church family, the love and compassion of our encouragers.  And most importantly, the love of God.  I don't believe when we are in our lowest moments that he fusses at us. 

"And when the enemy of my soul comes to intimidate me and he says you're a loser, you'll never amount to anything, it's just all about you.  It's a pipe dream.  You've got enough problems.  You think you can help somebody else?...And Jesus who fights our battles steps between us and says.  Destroyer your native tongue is lying.  You go because this guy....this girl is mine, you have no place here.  And power chases away fear.  Fear is like fog that when the light of day and the warmth of the sun comes, it cannot stay.  The closing in feeling of fear has to go when HE shows up!"

Thank you Dr. Foth.

I believe that God looks at us with eyes of love that says, "Be still....its okay....you don't have to be anything in this moment except My Child.....Be still and know that I am your God.  I am your love, I am yours and you are mine."

Today I hope you will rest in the knowledge that no matter where you are....You are his child and he loves you!

YES!  God loves you,

Debbie

If you would like a copy of Dr. Foth's series, send me an e-mail and I'll tell you how to order one.

Monday, March 15, 2010

"Truth" won't stoop to name calling.

I am constantly amazed at the name calling on both sides of any issue.  I'm just as angry about what's happening in our country as the next person.  I'll even use some pretty harsh "but true" words to describe the incompetence and bullying that's going on right now.  But, the bottom line for me is "truth".

I subscribe to several on line news worthy e-zines.  One of them is GOPUSA.  Michele Malkin is one of my favorite writers and she often does an article for this e-zine.  Most of the time I agree with the writers and appreciate the articles, but today....Doug Patton stepped over the line.

I've heard people like Bill Maher accuse Christians of being "mentally ill" and it makes me angry.  So today when Dough Patton stated that he thought liberalism was a mental disorder, I was also angry.
Liberalism is a mental disorder

First of all, a psychological mental disorder "should" be defined as a deviation from normal behavior caused by a chemical or physical dysfunction.  In the last 30 years or so, psychologists have also added "stress" or "trauma" as a cause of mental disorders.

That doesn't work for me.  I believe that anyone can be trained to think differently - if they are willing to change.  And...I believe that a lot of misconceptions about mental illness comes from the fact that the observer just "doesn't know how to cause change properly". 

Liberalism begins with a lack of a strong family, spoiled children, half-truths, selfishness and a lack of values and a God centered home.  That's how it begins....but that beginning can be hidden as generation after generation tweaks and changes the forms of thought.  That's how you can end up with a family that does go to church but argues that abortion isn't all that bad or that socialism and Christianity can exist together. 

Liberalism is a cause that doesn't understand the value of the word "no".  They don't understand that if it's not good for me then it can't be good for you.  They don't get the fact that their freedom ends where mine begins.  For real compassion and understanding of "real" freedom - the word "no" must be forefront and the word "sacrifice" must be a calling.  Liberals just don't get that.  And they don't get it because they haven't been "trained" or they haven't seen true freedom modeled before them. 

That's why I believe liberals are created by their home life and their experiences.  Liberals are people who have been hurt and in a spoiled brat kind of way believe they know it all or have the right to have it all.  Liberals are created. 

If we are going to return this country to solid values and solid roots, we must understand how a liberal is made and how to stop making them!

God loves you,

Debbie

Sunday, March 14, 2010

The Problem With Pain

I have not had a life totally void of pain. Ron and I have had our share of problems and pain. We cried buckets of tears because of our pain. The difference in our pain for the last 35 years and the pain we are experiencing now is time. We have always felt blessed because the pain we had to endure was what I like to call “microwave” pain. It was relatively short lived and we could see the end almost from the beginning.

The pain we are experiencing now is long range. We are praying and asking for God’s help without having the advantage of seeing the finish line. We are worried that our pain is mixed in with America’s pain and possibly global pain. We wonder if God is mounting his white horse for his triumphant return and if not….what will that mean for us?

The last year required us to face challenge after challenge. The last four months presented new challenges faster than we could catch our breath to respond. My parent’s health is failing and one parent is declining faster than I thought possible. Incoming finances were cut to an all time low. A trusted physician was not only cruel but unprofessional and caused several medical problems. I had to have massive reconstructive surgery on my foot and had several complications while in the hospital. Three days after I was home from the hospital, Ron lost his job and we are without insurance. I have dental issues and I will need another surgery in June.

My eyes overflow with tears as I struggle to catch my breath and decide what to do first. Have you ever felt that way? Have you ever wondered if this would finally be the blow that took you down? Have you smiled and told others to “believe” for their miracle yet wondered if God loves you enough to send even a tiny miracle into your life?

I understand!

I have good news.

Jesus loves you and he does care.
How do I know that? Because I can feel his love for me. I can feel his eyes fixated on my problems. I can feel the intensity of the “spirit” and I know that no matter how this ends up….I will be cradled safely in his hand.

The answer to all the problems that pain uses to devastate our lives is…"I believe"
If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth. –Mark 9:23

Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief. –Mark 9:24

Your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God. –1 Cor. 2:5

If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed…nothing shall be impossible unto you. –Matt. 17:20


God Loves You,


Debbie