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All posts for the month April, 2014

~ Laughing All The Way ~

Published April 30, 2014 by birdieklh

Okay, so it’s not REALLY funny, but I can’t help myself . . .

Talk about “One thing after another, after another!”

– First every day (but one) for the last week and a half was full of doctor visits (which means money – yuck!), many of those visits included hours of testings, not all of them pleasant.

– Then, our vehicle breaks down on the way to church Sunday morning. Towing and repairs = money (fun!).

– Yesterday, another horribly painful test, followed by not so good reports, followed by a call from another doctor with more not so good news (see my previous blog – Here We Go Again!).

– Flooding (fowl smelling, nasty, can’t use our water for days!) in our apartment – breathing the toxins has given me quite a bad allergic reaction (had to get a steroid shot to help, yesterday, still hasn’t helped that much).

– Then, to top it all off, my hubby drove up about an hour ago . . . his job no longer requires his presence.

 

S T O P !

 

laughter2 You’re kidding, right?!

Nope . . . wish I were . . . but the reason I’m laughing is because I KNOW that God IS in control, and that regardless of what things look like – all is well!

I believe that we are doing something very right to have the enemy so riled up and attacking us on every side! Glory to God! We want to be the kind of Christians that have the devil say “Oh no! They’re up!” when we open our eyes, put our feet on the floor and begin the day meeting with our Lord in His Word, prayer and times of worship . . . he knows he has trouble on his hands . . . Hallelujah!

So – yes – I’m laughing!

I’m laughing so hard, my sides are beginning to hurt!

We ARE victorious!

We are the head and not the tail!

We stand on Luke 10:19 which says, “I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions, and to overcome ALL the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.” NIV (emphasis, mine)

 

(c) klh 4Given Ministries

 

Here We Go, Again!

Published April 30, 2014 by birdieklh

“Okay, Lord . . . here I am, again, after a couple weeks of a lot of medical tests, finding myself having to face more “diagnosis” that I do NOT want, and refuse to ‘accept’ as Your perfect will for me.”

Another day, another 10+ ‘bad news’ scenarios from two doctors . . . awaiting a call from my orthopedic surgeon to correct something after a fall . . . the test they took to ‘look deeply into’ what damage the fall had done revealed to them SO much more about the rest of this vessel of clay that I’m in – temporarilly (praise God) – that I found myself kind of in shock.

Numb, actually.

It was a fight for me not to break down and cry.

Things had been going so well with me, physically. Able to walk again (on my own) after being in a chair for over 2 1/2 years, now facing another surgery which means at least 10 weeks back with a walker, more physical therapy.

And . . . there are three other issues that they want to ‘deal with’, but I’m asking them to wait . . . I am trusting God to continue to sustain me . . . Jesus bore my sickness, disease, sin, EVERYTHING on that cross and I do NOT have to accept more stinking diagnosis!

They can diagnosis me all they want, God’s Word says differently! I stand on His Word, His love for me, and His grace IS sufficient for me!

Sometimes this faith walk is a glorious stroll through the park with grace and joy abounding . . . sometimes this faith walk is full of things that cause us to make a choice to quit, give in, give up, shut ourselves off from people and even life, OR we can make the choice to continue walking . . . trusting . . . knowing that God loves us so very much and that His plans for us are for a future and a hope – not for harm!

It’s not always easy . . . in fact . . . it is honestly sometimes extremely hard to get that first step started . . . but KNOWING Who has you in His loving care . . .  how can I NOT choose to continue walking in faith!

“Thank You, Abba, for loving me like You do. Thank You for always being there, for always providing everything I need for each and every moment of every single day. My soul rejoices in You, Lord, You are my everything!”

(c) klh 4Given Ministries

A great posting to share with you!

Published April 28, 2014 by birdieklh

– Just received this from a very precious brother in the Lord, Donny Kyker, and (with his permission) HAD to share it with y’all! Blessings! –

Things I have learned over last week:man repentance

1. My Plate will always be full- I must do what the Holy Spirit tells me first.

2. My Plate will always seem to expand- “see above”

3. People will let you down- “get over it and pray for them”

4. People will not always do what they are supposed to do- “get over it pray for them”

5. Owning a business has its pains- ” get over it and let God run it”

6. People will tell lies about you, your friends and your family- Pray for them.

7. God is and always will be my refuge.

8. My wife means more to me than my ministry.

9. God is always and will be #1 in my life.

10. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Now teach me Jesus this week everything I need to know.

 

– Thanks, Donny, for sharing this wonderful lesson! –

Smarts or Wisdom?

Published April 28, 2014 by birdieklh

prov 9.10 This was one of the very first verses I ever memorized. It’s message, to me, is so profound.

Growing up there were a lot of negative words thrown my way. Things like, “dumb”, “stupid”, “you’ll never amount to anything”, “can’t you ever do anything right” . . . so there was this deep desire within me to be smart.

When I found Jesus (well, when He found me, and I accepted His call), and I saw this verse, I latched on to it with my entire being. I was going to be smart after all! But back then (44 years ago) I did not grasp the meaning of what wisdom and knowledge from the Lord really were.

Older now, and with a lot of ‘life’ under my belt, I feel that I do have a better conception as to how the wisdom we receive from God differs from the ‘smarts’ of the world we live in.

There are many people who have spent years at universities, obtaining vast knowledge about many things. Yet, they do not have a clue as to the wisdom that comes from God.

We’ve all heard the term “street-smarts” in regards to how some people survive out in this crazy world when they have been left to fend for themselves. That’s not either.

To better understand this wisdom . . . let me encourage you to read/study Proverbs 8. I know that helped me quite a bit with my own questions. openbible Listen, specifically, to the last three verses, “Listen to my instruction and be wise; do not ignore it. Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway. For whoever finds me finds life and receives favor from the LORD. But whoever fails to find me harms himself; all who hate me love death.” (Proverbs 8:33-36 NIV)

This wisdom is instruction directly from God. It comes through His Word and through that still small voice – His Holy Spirit, within us. As we stay in The Word, in times of prayer, in times of listening, we WILL hear.

But hearing, dear ones, is not enough either . . . we need to walk according to what He tells us. This is what we call ‘Faith in Action’. James 2:17 tells us, “In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.” (NIV) Then he gives us the excellent example, in verse 22, Abraham – “You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did.”

From those Scriptures we know that we are to live out our faith – we do it by listening to God and obeying what He shows us. As we do this, His wisdom grows in our spirit. As we become like sponges – absorbing the nuggets of knowledge He provides –  and by listening, we obtain the wisdom to live out our faith. How to make the right choices. How NOT to react to things. And, how to become stronger and more productive in this Kingdom life we are living here and now.

Not only that, but we begin to store up this Godly knowledge along with the wisdom on ‘how’ to apply it to day to day lives. This allows us to speak into the lives of those God bring along our path.

Dear ones, I know a lot of  ‘smart’, ‘well educated’ people who don’t walk in wisdom. And, I know a lot of (by the worlds standards) people who do not appear to have much knowledge (perhaps they never even finished their lower level education), but they live and walk powerfully in Godly wisdom! If I had to choose between the two? I’d take the latter! Of course, in all fairness, I know a lot of people who are both . . .  🙂 Praise God!

 

(c)klh 4Given Ministries

Lord, I Need Some Calm!

Published April 25, 2014 by birdieklh

Oh boy . . .

You can see them on the horizon . . .

Those tell tale signs that a storm is brewing . . .

Before you know it, you will be standing smack dab in the middle of it’s rage.

 

You feel surrounded.

You may feel overwhelmed.

You may feel like you can’t move for fear of being struck down, or blown away.

Perhaps you may even begin to question “Why, Lord, why? Why am I caught out here in this mess? Where are You?!”

You try to get away but it appears to follow you.

Me? I’m strange . . . I’ve always enjoyed storms (weather storms, that is). I love the freshness in the air afterward. I love the calm stillness that seems to take over after the storm has passed. And during it? Oh, I absolutely love the rolling thunder, the awesome displays of the lightning across the sky. Sometimes I feel like the Lord is giving a private showing just for me to enjoy.

But . . . the storms of life? Not so much.

In fact, I find myself in the middle of one of those raging storms of life right now, and I hear myself crying out, “Lord, I need some calm!”

There is a difficult situation that we’re dealing with (my hubby and I) and it is through no fault of our own whatsoever.

We’ve tried to get the situation rectified, but to no avail.

It is a storm that so far has lasted several days, with really no relief in sight until perhaps Monday (another 2+ days away).

We are trying to remain calm.

We ARE trusting in the Lord for His provision, and His justice to be provided.

At the same time, we are truly having to be humble, walk in forgiveness, praying for those ‘in charge’ of the situation – trying not to allow anger to rise up. I am not an angry person; however, I do admit, it has been a huge battle, this afternoon, trying to keep that ugly emotion down! It wants to rise up so badly . . . wants to do some ‘raging’ of its own, but it wouldn’t do any good anyway. Only God – His love – being a witness of His grace through this storm – can draw others to Him. That is what is really important. Not our comfort. Not the ‘demanding of our rights.’

What message do you wish to convey to others in the storms of your life?

Others watch and see the clouds billowing, the lightning flashing/striking, they hear the thunder roaring. Do they also see you remaining steadfast, secure, full of God’s loving grace, hope, joy, mercy, compassion in the middle of it? Or are they observing scattered pieces of what used to be your life here and there, like a tornado had ripped you completely apart?

I’m not saying you can’t ‘feel’ the frustrations of the storm. Nor can you ignore the other ravaging emotions that pop up with it. But you CAN choose how you handle those feelings, those emotions. You can choose to take shelter in the Rock – rest under the shadow of His wings – knowing that He has you covered. He has you protected. He IS your consistency in the middle of chaos. Or you can choose to get lost in the storm – only death and destruction await one there . . .

Cry out to Him, with all your heart, “Lord, I need some calm!” and He WILL answer you. He WILL see you through. Rest in Him and Trust in Him!

(c) klh 4Given Ministries

Beyond the Sunset

Published April 24, 2014 by birdieklh

sunset banner

I love watching the sun set at the close of the day. To see it lowering itself down from the heavens, seeming to tuck itself into a rainbow of warm colors to rest from the day’s work. Of course, that is not true at all. We know that it is our Earth that moves, not the Sun. And, we also know that when the Sun “seems to disappear” from us, it is shinning brightly elsewhere on our same Earth. Nevertheless, it is the picture I paint in my mind as I behold the beauty of the sunset.

I also think of that wonderful old hymn:

“Beyond the sunset, O blissful morning
When with our Savior heaven is begun
Earth’s toiling ended, O glorious dawning
Beyond the sunset when day is done.

Beyond the sunset, no clouds will gather
No storms will threaten, no fears annoy
O day of gladness, O day unending
Beyond the sunset eternal joy.

Beyond the sunset, a hand will guide me
To God the Father whom I adore
His glorious presence, His words of welcome
Will be my portion on that fair shore.

Beyond the sunset, O glad reunion
With our dear loved ones who’ve gone before
In that fair homeland we’ll know no parting
Beyond the sunset forever more…”

And, then I think of something else . . .

We don’t have to wait! We have access to His glorious presence right here, right now!

That is something to shout about!

His hand guides us NOW – if we ask Him to – if we allow Him to.

He is just as close as the mention of His precious Name – JESUS – that brings to my heart eternal joy beginning today!

(c) klh 4Given Ministries

Testing . . . One . . . Two . . . Three

Published April 22, 2014 by birdieklh

Tests, tests, tests.

We have had them in our lives every single moment since we come out of the womb. testing We have had our blood tested, our vital signs tested, vision and hearing tested, reflexes tested, balance tested. As we grow older we have our intelligence tested, our learning skills, math skills, vocabulary skills, memory retention, physical abilities. We’ve been tested this way and that to find out our strengths, our weaknesses, our health, our potential. Sometimes it feels like our very existence in society weighs in the balance of our test results!

For colleges we must take ‘entry exams’.

For employment and/or military we must take ‘physical exams’.

For obtaining driver’s license we must take written and driving exams.

We accept all of these things as a part of life. No questions asked. We understand it is just the way things are done, so we comply.

So, why, may I ask, do we make such a fuss over finding ourselves in the middle of a ‘test’ from the Lord?

from godmissionpossible.blogspot.com

from godmissionpossible.blogspot.com

We KNOW that God does allow things to enter into our lives that are both good and bad. There are blessings within everything that God allows.

He protects us from the enemy, so do not get me wrong, but He does allow bad things to happen to us from time to time as a ‘testing of our faith.’

Peter tells us that “These have come so that your faith–of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire–may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.” (1 Peter 1:7 NIV)

In preparing gold or silver, the jeweler heats the metal – the hotter the fire, the purer the results. All that which is impure rises up to the surface and is taken away, what remains is of great worth. But it is ONLY through the fire that the great worth becomes known.

Another example is tea. Yes, I said tea. You have a bag of leaves, and you do not know how rich it is, or how flavorful it is until you put it IN the boiling water to steep for a while. Then, and only then, does the richness and full flavor of its quality come forth.

Here is another example. It is something that is black, ugly, dirty, leaves ugly marks, and most people try to avoid contact with unless necessary for heat.

What is it?

Coal.

However, it has been proven that something very beautiful is produced (besides heat/fuel) from this element.

What is it?

Diamonds.

Yes – sparkling, clear, radiant diamonds. How?

Through pressure – extreme pressure.

When we, like the precious metals, a tea bag, or a piece of coal, go through tremendous times of testings we have an amazing opportunity to allow the true beauty of God in all His Glory to shine through our lives.

We can show the world that His grace IS sufficient for every moment. That we can still maintain our faith, our trust, our hope, our firm foundation, our steadfast relationship with Abba Father, through Christ’s finished work on Calvary. We can truly overcome any obstacle, climb over any mountain, crawl through any desert, muddle through any muddy storm, and come out on the other side of it standing tall in total complete victory through Jesus Christ!

Every thing that comes against us, every thing meant to harm us in any way, is for us who CHOOSE to walk in faith, just a stepping stone along our journey to our Heavenly Home. Our very trials, testings, struggles, become great testimonials to God’s amazing grace and power. Our lives show that the redemption we have through Jesus was not just for our sin, but also for every single step we take along the way as well!

I know that what you are facing today may seem overwhelming. You may, in fact, feel like God has completely turned His head the other way, put His fingers in His ears and has totally blocked your cries for help out. My dear ones, this is NOT true!

Keep on pressing forward – never give up – remember we already have EVERYTHING we need, right here, right now – “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” (2 Peter 1:3 NIV)

God will NOT abandon you! “The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” (Deut. 31:8 NIV)

and . . . nothing can ever separate you from His love! “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39 NIV)

201106281000 There is a song I loved to sing years ago (and still find myself singing it from time to time), and it comes to mind today as I post this photo . . . it goes like this:

“”The Battle Belongs To The Lord”

In heavenly armour we’ll enter the land
The battle belongs to the Lord
No weapon that’s fashioned against us shall stand
The battle belongs to the Lord

We sing glory and honor
Power and strength to the Lord
We sing glory and honor
Power and strength to the Lord

The power of darkness comes in like a flood
The battle belongs to the Lord
He’s raised up a standard, the power of His blood
The battle belongs to the Lord

We sing glory and honor
Power and strength to the Lord
We sing glory and honor
Power and strength to the Lord

When your enemy presses in hard do not fear
The battle belongs to the Lord
Take courage my friend, your redemption is near
The battle belongs to the Lord”

****************************************************************************************************************************************************

When you find yourself surrounded by test after test after test . . . look up, my friend . . . your redemption is near . . . the battle is not yours, but His. Allow His light, His love, His glory to shine through your situation today. Let others see Him in you and through you as they observe your walk of faith even in the middle of testing times!

(c) klh 4Given Ministries