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Friday, February 26, 2010

Eagles Nest

Self Pity is not good, but I was feeling a bit blue that day. My life was being stirred.

I was thinking about the baby eagle that has had some of the soft cushions removed so it will leave the nest. At least that was the way I remembered it. In searching for the story I came up with some interesting information.

Supposedly, when the mother eagle begins building her nest, she makes the first layer out of thorns and sharp sticks. The next layer is soft and comfortable. Now when she wants to encourage her nestlings to fly, she "stirs the nest," digging through that comfortable layer to the thorns beneath, so that the young eagles will be persuaded to leave.

Unfortunately, while this is a nice story repeated endlessly in sermons and on Christian websites, I can't seem to find any facts to support the "stirring the nest" theory.

But it is a nice comparison. Even the "thorns" is not scriptural; it is one of those nice bits of tradition that has been retold so often that many people now believe it is scripture.

In truth, it seems that when Mama Eagle wants her fledglings to fly, she just dumps them over the edge. But not to worry - - she then swoops down and catches her young with her wings. They are safe and can try to learn to fly another day.

Deuteronomy 32:11 As an eagle stirs up her nest, flutters over her young, spreads abroad her wings, takes them and bears them on her wing - - -

In your world, does it seem at times that the nest is being stirred or could it be that (you) the little eagle just might get dumped out of the nest? Is it time for you to fly or to learn to fly?

Many are finding their work situation intolerable. Others are being shoved out of their comfort zone. Your nest is different than mine but take heart. You have one who will scoop you up and show you new things. God is ever mindful of you and he will always be there.

You are never too old or too young to learn and to reach out to fulfill God’s purpose for your life. So take a deep breath, move those wings and practice flapping them a bit. You will be getting stronger with each practice flight so keep it up.

Even if you find it difficult at first, with God’s assistance, you can soon learn to be a flight instructor! Believe it - - - with God all things are possible.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Inky the Tailless Cat

“Mama come quick! The mother cat has moved all the babies except one!” was the alarmed cry from one of my children.

We were on a weekend vacation up in the mountains. Excited to explore, my children had discovered a deep hole where a wild mother cat had hidden her kittens. She must have sensed their discovery, so she had moved them to protect her litter from my sweet, curious kids. But wait! Not all were gone.

There she was so tiny and so black, this little one that was left behind. Her eyes still closed, she was so small, so weak and helpless. Apparently the mother cat tired after moving so many kittens, or for some reason of her own she did not take this last baby with her. Perhaps it was that the mother cat perceived something wrong with this baby.

We took this new kitten home with us and began to feed her with a small doll bottle. As she grew, her eyes finally opened. She couldn’t have been more than two weeks old by then. I was her ‘Mama’.

In the mornings, she would sit on my fuzzy bedroom slipper as I fixed breakfast for the children. She was black as ink, so we named her ‘Inky’. In every way but one, Inky was a normal cat. There was one conspicuous difference; she did not have a tail! The Manx breed of cat is tailless. They are excellent hunters, which we soon discovered. There was nothing weak about this cat!

One of my daughters loved to hold Inky and sing to her, and little Inky would purr back her own song. In Zephaniah 3:17 (New King James Version) it is written,

“The LORD your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.”

What a thought! In our weakened state, God loves us and rejoices over us! As I think about it, I am reminded of what Jesus did for us by taking our weakness and causing us to become something lovely and strong. Jesus did not see in us any imperfections that we think we have. He loves us just as we are.

Inky was loved! My husband made a wooden travel case for her, and she willing used it for her bed. It was her sanctuary. For nineteen years, Inky lived and traveled with us. From house to house she went as we moved to Oklahoma, and then returned to California.

One sad day, her soft meow let us know that something was wrong. Her eyes spoke to us that she was in pain. A trip to the Veterinarian enlightened us to the fact that her kidneys were failing, and that it was time to let her go. The tears welled up!

It is heartbreaking to lose a pet that has been such a part of the family. Over the years, we have lost many pets and sometimes we say, “Never again.” Then, after time has passed, our hearts begin to soften and are opened once again to welcome a new family member.

As a side note, have you ever wondered if animals will be in Heaven? My sister-in-law always says, “This was a good Christian Cat, so why not?”

The scripture tells us that the Lion will lay down with the Lamb, and to me this is a very good indication that animals will be in heaven. I believe they will be there - - all the pets you and I have loved and lost. Yes, we will see our pets again. I believe that my little Inky will be there in heaven, waiting for me.

Monday, February 22, 2010

LET ME DO IT MYSELF

“I want to do it myself,” screamed my toddler as she insisted in putting her shoes on the wrong feet.

How often have I allowed her to wear her shirt on backwards or wrong side out just to permit her that feeling of satisfaction and to help fulfill her longing to be independent? She learned soon enough that suggestions and advice from parents and those in authority could save her unnecessary embarrassment! She eventually realized that by listening to experienced teachers that she could avoid loss of energy and time in completing a task.

I have been thinking about those who want to earn heaven by “Doing it themselves.” They can be seen going door to door or standing on a corner selling their magazines. Some young people sacrifice time by selling flowers for their cause in the airports. Others are young missionary men who travel two by two, driven in their efforts to chalk up credit for the mission. The hope of these workers is to receive favor with God by, "Doing it themselves."

If we could earn our way to heaven we would be missing the great fact that Salvation is a free gift. Heaven cannot be earned with “brownie points” or by Works alone. After we receive Jesus as our Lord, we no longer do good works to earn His love. Our desire to do good works will be an evidence of our love for Him.

Years ago I felt compelled to not allow anyone to leave my door with out a Gospel tract or our Church weekly magazine. It was almost a compulsion until one day I realized I was “Doing it myself.” Today I only give out tracts when I am prompted of the Holy Spirit to do so.

When it comes to doing something for God, I am often guilty of saying, “I want to do this myself.” Yet my God is ready to empower me (and you) with His anointing to get the job done more quickly and directly to hit the target. It is up to me to lay aside my own feeble efforts and rely on His directions and suggestions so that His desires will be accomplished on earth.

Only when we recognize and admit our weakness can we identify God's strength, His overcoming power and the wisdom that He makes available to us. We can then allow Him to do the works of God through us as we are His servants.

So Lord, I can not do anything for you in my own strength. I refuse to “Do it myself,” I will allow you do it through me. For without You, I am nothing!

As I seek your face and wait for your direction, I am led to “put my shoes on the proper feet” and to “wear my shirt correctly.”

Friday, February 19, 2010

A Legal Child

The kids shuffled downstairs. Chairs scooted in and out at the breakfast table. Sleepy children yawned as they all gathered for morning devotions and Bible reading. This was how we began the day. But today was a little different. We had a new house guest, a young girl, Elaine, who eventually became a part of our family. I read out loud from the Book of Ephesians:

“Let him that stole - - steal no more: but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to those who are in need.”

Elaine sat up straight and asked, “Where is that found?”

I told her in the book of Ephesians the 4th chapter.

Multiple problems had plagued Elaine’s family until she found herself without a place to call home. Her mother, a good friend of the family, was desperate and had asked if we would take Elaine. After speaking with my husband we agreed to accept her into our home.

The Bible reading completed, it was time for the children to get ready for school. My youngest daughter could not find her shoes. We searched all the familiar places, but they were not to be found. Finally, I asked the Lord to help me find those shoes.

“Behind the sofa”, He seemed to whisper.

Yes, indeed, there they were - in a place so unexpected!

I asked Elaine if she knew how they got there. With a smug little voice that sounded like she had just “got even”, she indicated that my daughter did not take care of her shoes and so she had taught her a lesson!

I tried not to laugh! Our children understood that they were to respect each other’s property, and if they saw money or other things lying around, it was off limits

Rather than start setting down blunt rules, I chose to use the Bible to turn on the light of our family principles. I explained that, in our household, we do not teach each other lessons. Each person in the family is responsible for their own belongings. We also LIVE in our house, so sometimes things just do not stay in place.

Elaine was so sweet and I discovered that she was a quick learner. Elaine wanted to please us and she also wanted to please the Lord.

So, off to school we went. More challenges! As much as we had decided to include Elaine in our family, I discovered that I could not enroll her in school because she was not a relative. What a problem!

I was advised that the only way she could be enrolled was for us to become legal Foster Parents. That was not an easy task. We had to be finger- printed, by the police department and have a home inspection by social services. Each of our children was interviewed and asked if they would accept Elaine into the family. They all answered, “Yes.” In no time at all, we were legal, and so was Elaine. She had all the privileges of the other children in our home.

What does it mean to be legal? In the USA it is to have a birth certificate saying you were born here, or naturalization papers. In heaven, it means to have your name written in the Lamb’s book of Life, signifying that you were born again. Accepting Jesus as your Savior puts your name in the book in Heaven and then you are legal with legal rights that come with it.

Years ago I can remember hearing David du Plessis minister at our church. He told us that God has NO Grandchildren. God also has NO Step children or Foster Children. We must not rely on our Parents, grandma, teachers or Government agencies to get us into heaven. Each of us must be born into the family of God and although we can sing “God of our Fathers”, He must be our personal God. We then become legitimate children of God receiving all the privileges that are ours because God is our legal Father.

Simply put, this is how to become a legal Christian. You say with your mouth that you believe Jesus was born and that He died on the cross for you. Acknowledge that He was buried, that He rose from the dead and is now seated in heaven. Then you tell him that you intend to follow him all the days of your life and invite him to come live in your heart. The Bible says that all those who come to the Father God in the name of Jesus, he will receive and not cast out. Now wasn’t that easy?

Are you a legal child?

Thank you for allowing me to make a joyful noise today.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Time To LISTEN

The cashier at the small Grocery store was speaking, “Sorry but your card was denied, try again.”

The older gentleman in line ahead of me tried the third time and his card was not accepted again. “That is it.” the cashier told him in a harsh voice.

The cashier looked at me puzzled when I told her that I would pay for his groceries. The man was walking toward the door and I called out “Sir, come back”. He returned to the counter and I told him to take his groceries as I was paying for them. He said,” No I can’t let you do that.” With a firm voice I said, “Please take your groceries, for today you have been blessed.” He hesitated but then took the groceries thanked me and left.

The Lord sometimes prompts us so powerfully that we cannot mistake his command. This was one of those times. In all my life this is the first time that I have ever done something like that for a stranger.

As I thought back through the years, there has only been a few times when the Lord's voice to me has been so loud. The thunderous voice of God that we hear is all within us and is not heard by others. Other times the voice of God is quiet and like a whisper in the wind. Whether soft or loud when we hear the Lord speak - - that is the time to listen and then it is also time to obey.

God speaks to us from the pages of his Word and the verses seem to leap off the pages and that is exciting too. Or when the Pastor speaks and one of his statements goes straight to your heart, it is a direct word from the Lord. It is time to listen and to obey.

Attention please! God is still speaking. Are you listening?

Thank you for allowing me to make a joyful noise today!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

MOVING On UP

“Yes, we will take it, and it will do fine!” My soon-to-be husband handed the landlady $10 for the first week’s rent.

This tiny one-room, embracing a wall-bed, a small kitchen and shared bath was to be our new home for the next few months. I was so excited then, but thinking back now it makes me chuckle.

I remember our next apartment seemed like a mansion to me! Two flights of stairs leading to a place to call home. Now we had our own private bathroom, a large living room, a separate bedroom and a small kitchen.

This new apartment had everything! It even included a wash room in the basement with a coin-operated wringer washing machine! Convenience was everywhere! To dry our clothes all we had to do was step outside the washroom door, hang them on the clothes lines, and the wind would whip them dry! Yes, we were moving on up.

Since that time, we have lived in larger grander apartments and in luxurious houses. More humble abodes have also included a camper trailer and mobile homes. No matter where I found myself I was happy in every one of those places. It was not because of a fine residence but because I chose to be happy.

Living in a million dollar house does not bring you happiness. Happiness is a learned choice. Being happy, regardless of your situation is absolutely and undeniably a decision.

Learning to hold our belongings with a hand that is open not clutching or grasping brings peace and builds our faith in the Lord. Hold lightly the things that are seen. It is those things that are not seen that are the most valuable!

In the book of Revelation is says; “Because you say, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and don’t know that you are wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:.”

One day, we will leave our homes, beautiful or wretched as they may be, and we will be called to Move on up to a higher place to live.

Jesus said, “I go to prepare a place for you and where I am there you will be also.”

Isn’t that great? No matter what your present living quarters are like now, in the near future we will be “Moving on UP” to a better place that God is building for us!

Friday, February 12, 2010

When Your World Shakes Around You.

40 seconds is all it took to shake Haiti into a muddled mass of mess.

Such a thing is difficult to consider! Ruins and filth are strewn everywhere. Parents gone and orphaned children scatter the streets. With little hope of helping themselves, the people are at the mercy of the worlds Good Samaritans.

We live in a world that often is frenzied and falling apart! In each of us there is a longing to be able to reach out and rely on something in which we can trust. We crave to hold on to something that never changes; something or someone on whom we can depend.

The people of Haiti have suffered immensely - - - News reports tell of countless people crying out to God. The churches are packed. There is hope at the end of the tunnel!

In my times of trouble I realize that Jesus is my Solid Rock, my Strong Tower, and my only security! Yes we can discover that stability in Jesus Christ for our daily existence.

God's Word is unchanging and unmovable. Jesus is the living Word. He is the Word made flesh, and we can rush to Him the moment we feel shaky or tossed about by the circumstances of life that we experience.

The Word of God that we have hidden in our hearts is an anchor that is able to hold us firm. Of course it is not an overnight process, but do not loose patience.

One excellent way to hide God’s word inside your heart is to use repetition. Meditation is a form of muttering to yourself and can be a tool to assist you in memorizing scripture that applies to your particular situation.

My own habit has been to type or write scripture on small index cards. I can easily carry them with me. Then as time allows, the card can be retrieved and a moment spent repeating the confession or affirmation that is found there.

Here is an excellent scripture for you to begin memorizing. It is found in the book of Philippians the 4th chapter: “And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

Over and over, the Bible tells us to “FEAR NOT.” To trust in the Lord with all our heart and to lean not to our own understanding.

So when your world shakes around you - - - Allow your unsettled mind to find peace and rest as you discover how simple it is to place your trust in Him.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

What are you looking at?

“Don’t look at me! I’m naked!” shrieked my 3 year old as she streaked from the bath room on her way to collect her pajamas which were still in her room.

I was reminded of that incident the other day as my eyes met those of a defiant teenager. She flaunted multiple piercing and bright green hair.

“What are you looking at?” she snarled.

“Honey if you are not smart enough to know what I am looking at, I, for certain, am not about to educate you,” was my gentle reply.

She softened, and then I told her that I was admiring her awesome hair.

“Oh …… thanks,” she replied.

I sighed. How often have I looked at the outward appearance of someone and failed to see value in those whose appearance or behavior is loudly calling out,

“Look at me I am naked.”

They do not know that they are wretched and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.

Let’s turn the tables. Are we, as Christians, subtly influenced by fashion as it is displayed in advertising? Do we, ourselves, often adapt to the popular fads and trends?

Perhaps we as Christians are also guilty of calling out,

“Look at me I am naked!”

The obvious fact is that we literally, and spiritually, need to get dressed as we streak through life!

May we be reminded that God provides for us a Robe of His righteousness to cover our nakedness.

“Oh Lord, forgive me when I have conformed to this world. Help me not to be judgmental, but to pray for those whom I see as naked. “

The Bible tells us that people look on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at their hearts.

“Lord, open my eyes that I may see people, unsaved or saved, as you see them. Let me be an example so that when they view me, that they will see Jesus."

So my dear friend, “What are you looking at today? What are you really seeing?

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Just a Little Snakie Lick

Hidden in the thick bushes on the neighbors side of our property is a Rattlesnake nest! Baby rattlesnakes are born live but can be just as menacing as an adult.

My husband has busily been preparing for snaking season. He purchased some fine mesh rolls and has diligently been securing them around the sides and back of our yard. As soon as they are all in place, he plans to pour some cement at the base of the mesh to prevent snakes from crawling under the screen

Not once, but twice, our curious hound dog has been bitten by a snake! The first time it was just a baby snake. You would not think a tiny snake could do much damage, but he did! Now, if the snake could just lick my dog maybe that would not hurt him; but NO, he had to bite my puppy.

In life, some things appear to be small and innocent enough, but they are best left alone. Often, we observe our friends doing things or going certain places that we know in our own heart would not be right for us. They are tempting and seem innocent enough. However, I can hear my Mother saying, “

“If your friends jumped off a bridge would you do it too?”

When I was a young girl I remember reading a tract. In part it said “Other’s May, but You May Not.” It went on to say that some people can get by, or even get away, with just a tiny bite of sin. Shall we say just a “Snakie-lick”.

When Eve bit the apple that turned Creation upside-down, it was only a small bite! So if you are tempted to take “only a little bit” or just do something “only once”, keep that in mind. Understand that even a small Snakie-lick or Snakie-bite can flip-flop your world in a way you never anticipated! Given a little time, you will be wondering how you got so far off course.

Innocent looking “snakes” can really mess up your life! How do you keep them out? Daily prayer is the best screen-mesh to surround and protect you from the Snakie-licks of this world. Then, plug up the holes. Cement your life by daily reading a portion of God’s Word.

Thank you for allowing me to make a joyful noise today.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Clean Dishes - Clean Feet

As is my practice, I rinsed off the lunch dishes and placed them in the dishwasher. What I did not notice was that there was water standing on the tops of the cups.

In a few minutes I heard my husband emptying the dishwasher. OH No, I exclaimed. I just put some dirty dishes in there.

He protested, “Well it is too late now because I am almost done putting them away.”

It is just the two of us living here, and when something like this happens you just make the best of it. If we were out camping who knows how those dishes might have been washed. Perhaps they might have even been washed in cold water or only rinsed at best.

As I reflected on this incident I was reminded when Jesus said “He that is washed doesn’t need to wash again only to wash his feet, because he is every bit clean.”

He meant that once we receive Jesus into our heart, we don’t need to get saved all over again. We are clean and each day as we follow the Lord he keeps us clean. It is only when we knowingly step into a place where “our feet get dirty” that we need to repent and get our feet washed so to speak. Jesus also said in another place that “You are clean through the Word which I have spoken unto you.”

That is why it is important to read our Bible daily because it is the word of God that washes over us and keeps us clean.

So next time I rinse the dishes, and start to place them in the dishwasher I will pay better attention to see if there is water standing on top of the cups.

Thank you for allowing me to make a joyful noise today.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Pay Day Is Coming

“You will just have to wait until Pay Day!”

I heard those words often, when I was growing up. My Dad often cut out a piece of cardboard as a temporary fix for the hole in the sole! This was supposed to make it last until Pay Day. Other times Mother would purchase some rubber soles that Dad would glue on the bottom of our shoes. If one of the other children got new shoes, our anticipation was high because it would be our turn next - - on Pay Day!

Pay Day always came. Twice a month we excitedly looked forward to it. Part of the reason was that when Mom and Dad would do the grocery shopping, a bag of jelly beans or gum drops was often included as a treat! Mother was always careful to divide the candy so each child received the same amount. There was no partiality; we were all treated with the same reward.

Pay Day is still something we look forward to as Christians. The Bible says that God is keeping records on each one of us. There will be crowns for the faithful and special robes for the soul winners. The prayer warriors and the intercessors will also receive special honor.

Some of us have had a Missionary Heart, but we found it impossible to go. So instead we gave of our finances or we simply prayed for the missionaries. Perhaps preaching was a strong desire, but, instead, God gave us a group of children to train and encourage. Evangelism may have stirred in some of our hearts, but instead God gave us a work place to be a silent witness for him. God keeps everything in his records.

Imagine the excitement on that day when the rewards are passed out!

Some may be surprised when they are given a large reward. They may wonder, “Why I am getting this reward?”

If you were faithful and “stayed by the stuff” so to speak, your reward will be the same as those who went to the battle. God is not partial!

So my friends keep praying! Keep giving! Keep serving the Lord and never give up! Pay Day is coming and it won’t be long!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Listen for that Signal

Mother would blow three long blasts on her Police whistle!
Tw-e-e-t! Tw-e-et! Tw-e-e-t!

That was our signal to leave the school yard where we played after school and head for home. Dinner was on the table and we knew we had to obey that signal.

The Bible tells us that on that last day, the Angel Gabriel will blow his horn and signal all those who have accepted Jesus as their personal Savior to come home to the banquet table.

Involved! We are all involved in business, in school, or in various activities, but when that signal comes, we WILL drop everything and fly away to glory, as the old song says.

As we wait here on earth, we are to continue with daily activities, living life as if that day is still thousands of years away. The catch is that we must live prepared - - as if that trumpet will sound at any second.

Mother also had other signals to alert us. One was the street lights. If we were playing outside close to home, when the street lights came on it signaled the end of our play. It was time for us to come home.

Today there are many signals to which we must be alert. These tell us that the return of Jesus may be sooner that we realize. The Bible speaks of wars and rumors of wars. It also comments about signs in the earth and in the heavens.
Some people shake and quake over the things occurring today.

It is not time to fear or to be worried. Rejoice! It is time to rejoice and to understand what is happening when we see these things come to pass. The Bible tells us that there is a great cloud of witnesses watching us. I always thought it meant our loved ones who have gone before and that they are interested in us even now. That could be it. The angels are probably already setting the table for the feast that God is preparing for his children. You know, I can imagine that they have one eye on us, while casting glances at Gabriel to see if he is ready to lift his horn to his lips!

So the thing to remember is not to be afraid, but to just stay watchful and to be prepared. Keep listening for that signal that lets you know it is time to come home!

Thank you for allowing me to make a joyful noise today.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Gloria and Ann

My first grade teacher asked my reading group to arrange our small chairs in a circle at the back of the room. I sat between Gloria and Ann. Gloria leaned across me and spoke to Ann in a voice loud enough so I could hear. She said, “Do you like Hazel?” Ann replied, “Yes.” Gloria laughed and said, “I don’t like her at all. In fact I hate her.”

I felt like crying! The color in my face drained and so did my spirits! Even though I had been taught not to hit, I was tempted to slap Gloria’s face! In my six year old mind, I knew I had a choice. I quickly decided that I would pretend that I had not heard Gloria’s remarks. Those Sunday School lessons on loving your neighbor had paid off! I would treat her with kindness.

Years later, I realized that Gloria had been teasing and joking. Some families enjoy pranks and playing those ugly games, but it is not a good practice.
Children can be injured by the words they hear and remember. Scars can be left that often cause insecurity and feelings of rejection leading to emotional and even physical illness.

“Dear Gloria, I thank you for allowing me the opportunity to learn to exercise the practice of walking in forgiveness.”

“I HATE YOU!” Yes, I said those words once when I was very upset with my Mother. Mother quickly responded and instructed me that there are some words to which a person should never give a voice. The word hate is one of them. She let me know that the person to whom I had spoken these words would always remember what I had said! Ouch! Thinking back I still remember the first grade incident.

Mother continued, “No matter how much you beg forgiveness and say you are sorry, they will continue to remember those words you spoke in haste.”

“Yes, Mother, I love you and I do not believe I have ever told a person since that time that I hated them.”

The Bible was Mother’s tool for emphasis. It made an impact on me! Mother explained that the Bible tells us not to stay angry. While it is not a sin to be angry, it is our obligation to make things right with the other person before the sun goes down.

“Ahhhh Thank you dear Mother....”You taught me to forgive even when I did not feel like forgiving! You taught me to keep certain words unspoken.

So my friend, here is my challenge to you. Are you setting a watch before the words of your mouth? Do practice telling those who are close to you that you love them?

Do you use words to show your love even as you show love by your actions? Take special care to use words of respect that build up and not words that tear down relationships. Words can hurt or words can heal – it is your choice.

And, last of all, are you also acting out the Lord’s Prayer and forgiving those who you think are sinning against you? Just do it! It’s a lot easier to forgive the more often you do it.

Thank you for allowing me to make a joyful noise today!

Giving to Haiti Relief

Give to Haiti, Deduct from your '09 Tax Returns
Thanks to a new bill passed by Congress, gifts made through February 28, 2010, for Haiti earthquake relief are eligible for a tax deduction on your 2009 return. Any gifts made to Samaritan’s Purse for Haiti relief between January 12 and February 28 can be counted as a tax-deductible contribution on Form 1040, Schedule A.

Several years ago our Dentist Ron Lamb in Oklahoma would make short term mission trips. Finally he listened to the call to become a full time medical and dental missionary. Hi wife assists him and also works as a Dental hygienist to help with living expenses. Today they have a large warehouse and receive donated goods and then send them out quickly. He organizes trips to all parts of the world and also shares the Jesus Film.

Recently a large supply of surgical gloves, masks and bandages was donated to Dr Lambs Medical ministry.

Dr Lamb was contacted by Franklin Graham of Samaritan’s Purse as Graham was sending a medical team to Haiti. Ron gathered several pallets of supplies and they are on their way. Another shipment is also being sent.

May I suggest the following ministries that are going in the name of Jesus Christ to minister in Haiti. I realize there are other excellent ministries but these three operate on a low administrative budget. Search them on Google Search.

Samaritan’s Purse.

World Vision

Operation Blessing

Gifts given for Haiti relief in the next few days and weeks can be deducted on your 2009 income tax.

Hazel Moon

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

I Was Left Behind

It was summer of 1964. We had borrowed $1000 from the bank, took our five children and were off to the New York World’s Fair. While we were there, we decided to visit the Statue of Liberty. We purchased roundtrip tickets for the ferry boat to Ellis Island.

We were impressed by the largeness of the statue. Inside its frame, the statue had stairs that lead all the way up to the crown, but it was a steep and hot climb. My husband and most of the children ventured ahead of me, but my son and I stopped to rest. Soon here came my husband back down again with the other children as he had gone as far as he wanted to. I was determined to continue, so my son and I kept climbing those steep stairs to the top. After we had rested and viewed the landscape we started the climb down. Upon reaching the bottom of the statue we began looking for my husband and the other children.

Suddenly my son exclaimed, “There they are mother. Look they are already on the ferry boat and are leaving us behind”!

Well, by now I should have realized that my husband, who is always in a hurry, does not like to wait for anything. However, at that moment I was hopping mad!
I was not in a forgiving mood! I won’t mention all the thoughts that crossed my mind at that moment, BUT one thing for sure -- I did not enjoy being left behind.

As I think back now on that event, I am reminded about the scripture that says we should watch therefore because we know not what hour the Lord will return. Jesus told his disciples that two would be in the field; the one would be taken and the other left behind.

This triggered another memory of something that happened to me when I was fairly young. I had heard Bible stories about Jesus coming back some day in the clouds to take all those who were Christians. At that time I had not made my own decision to receive Jesus. So I told my mother about my plan to make sure I was not left behind when Jesus returned.

I said that I would stay close to her, and when she went up that I would grab her leg and go up along with her. Well my sweet mother had to hide her smiles as she patiently instructed me. She said that each person must make their own personal decision to invite Jesus into their heart. She told me that I could not depend on someone else’s friendship or relationship to get me into heaven.

Later on as I learned more about Jesus I did make that personal choice to accept him as my Savior. I did that because I loved Jesus and wanted to follow him.

And - - - certainly I did not want to be one of those who were left behind.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Not about ME

As I was meditating the Lord spoke softly to me and reminded me that it is NOT about ME but it all about HIM.

That is something that I must remember as I write these stories. There must be a story but the story must also tell a Spiritual truth that people will relate to in their own lives.

The focus must be on Jesus and on his word because it is the word of God that cuts like a sword and it is the word that heals and brings life. I know it seems like a contradiction to cut and heal all at the same time but that is so true.

Now the word alone is not sufficient. The Spirit must be there also. Some call it the anointing and it is just that and you can also tell when it is not there.

The anointing is like the yeast that should be in the bread. If it is NOT there, the bread does not rise. It is the same with a cake to leave out the baking powder. You get a flat cake and it is not very good to eat either.

God’s word is like food to our spirit. The anointing of the message goes down into our innermost being and gives us life. It is good to make it a habit to read at least a chapter from the Bible every day. Yes, I also use a devotional book because I love the stories just like you do. However a devotional book should be in addition and not instead of.

The Bible is where you look into the word and there you see Jesus in various chapters; even if the story is not about him.

Because you see it is all about HIM and not about me at all.

Thank you for allowing me to make a Joyful Noise today!