Our Life is a Breath . . . But the Lord Endures Forever!

“Thou, O LORD, shalt endure forever;
and thy remembrance unto all generations.”

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{Celebrating D’s 7th birthday!}

The events of a certain Tuesday night in August
will not soon be forgotten in our family!
How our beautiful daughter escaped a run-in with a golf cart
with minimal abrasions and a fractured ankle seems near-miraculous to us,
and I have been living with a profoundly grateful heart to the Lord
for His gracious hand in protecting her from more serious injury or death.

While making the drive out the long lane to the scene of the accident,
I was praying constantly and crying aloud to God for mercy and grace
for whatever we were going to see and face in the minutes ahead.

And two things were perfectly clear in my mind:
That if my child were to die, the two things I would want her to know would be:
how much I loved her and enjoyed to be with her, and secondly,
how deeply I would long for her to know and love the Word of our God.

The first one is understandable to me because I am, after all, her mother.
But the second desire, so strong in my heart at that moment, surprised me a little!
I know that if any one of my children should pass away in these young ages,
Jesus would carry them gently into Heaven ~ our forever home.
So why this strong desire for them to know Him and love His Word?

It was a clear reminder to me that all of our lives~from beginning to end~
are ordered and ordained by the Lord, and I want this “middle” part
of our existence and time on earth to be just as filled up with Him as our eternity will be.

I want the blessed privilege and joy of introducing them to THE MOST IMPORTANT ONE.
To know that they, as much as is possible while we live on this side of “the dark glass”, knew Him.
To know that their transition from this earth to their forever home is just as natural as breathing.

So that whether we live or die, our lives would be His,
spilling over as a lovely fragrance of worship to Him.
He is worthy!

So, as we begin this week with our more organized “book learnin’” education,
at the forefront of my mind is that deep desire to enjoy the days with my young ones around me,
and in all of the reading & writing, , cutting & pasting, learning & growing,
to love the Lord our God more than anything, and to hide His Word in our hearts.
It’s a treasure rare that will guide us into life abundant here,
and allow us to transition confidently into life eternal whenever He calls us there.

I am ever grateful.

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{Celebrating C’s 5th birthday!}

This was my FB post last week which tells about God replacing
Claudia’s favorite shirt which was cut off of her the night she was hurt . . .

Thanking The Lord for His mercies on our family in sparing this beautiful daughter’s life two nights ago.
We don’t know exactly how she escaped a run-in with a golf cart with minimal bruises and just a broken ankle,
but we are grateful. Phil & I know Jesus is the anchor of our souls for the trials and sorrows of life
when things don’t “turn out” as we’d like, but for today we rejoice in the gift of protection and life!


// The mercies of God What a theme for my song
Oh I never could number them o’er
They’re more than the stars in the heavenly dome
Or the sands of the wavebeaten shore 


For mercies so great, What return can I make
For mercies so constant and sure
I’ll love him, I’ll serve Him with all that I have 

As long as my life shall endure 

They greet me at morn when I waken from sleep
And they gladden my heart at the noon 

They follow me on into shades of the night
when the day with its labor is done 


His angels of mercy encompass me round
Wheresoever my pathway may lead
Each turn of the road some new token reveals 

Oh For me life is blessed indeed.//

When the paramedics came, Claudia’s favorite pants and one of her favorite shirts got snipped right off of her . . .
Hours later in the ER when she was coming around to seeming more like her normal self,
one of the first things she mentioned is that she wished they hadn’t cut her clothes . . .
I didn’t have too much hope that we could find an exact replacement but told her we’d check~
and we’d get her a similar one if we could.
Her Aunt Lil, knowing about this, stopped at Carter’s yesterday and later sent me this text,
“Clearance.thee ONLY one.size 6x.how’s that for God loves claudia?!!”


The EXACT shirt and size she had before . . . And the only one left?
Yes, that was a tear-jerker for this mother!

#grateful


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{At an earlier date with the favorite shirt. :)}

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Holding them near . . . and purposing to love the Lord and His Word as we journey on together!

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“For all flesh is like grass, and all its glory like a flower of the grass.
 The grass withers, and the flower falls,but the word of the Lord endures forever.
And this is the word that was preached as the gospel to you.”

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Deals that Won’t Last Long . . .

Just wanting to put a quick word out to you all about a couple of great deals
at a few of the online stores that I have enjoyed shopping over the years!

The first is Beeyoutiful.com
It’s a very rare Free Shipping opportunity from Beeyoutiful!
Need just one or two items? Now is the time to grab ‘em.
Planning on a large shopping venture and haven’t taken the time to put together the order?
Do it now! Want to mail a gift to family or friends?
Now you can do it without having to pay shipping!

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Free shipping will be available for 72 hours only:
from 12:00 am CDT on Tuesday, July 29th, until 11:59 pm CDT on Thursday, July 31st.
There’s no limit on how many orders you can place and no size restrictions.
Everything ships free, with the exception of the large 64 oz bottles of Berry Well.

Check out Miracle Salve, Lip Balm, and the line of mineral makeup,
to name just a few of the Beeyoutiful products that I enjoy!

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And *this*!!

I love Dayspring cards and gifts!
And there are two days left to get free shipping.
Have you seen their make-up bags and purses?
Or read the “Bread & Wine” book?
I use both regularly and have given many as gifts!

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Just enter code REDEEMEDSHIP at checkout, and choose FedEx Ground for FREE shipping.
Good through the end of the month – 7/31/14. Enjoy!

**NOTE: This code may only apply to redeemed clearance items,
but when I applied it to my order, I received free shipping on even non-redeemed items
Just be aware . . . and let me know how it works for you!?**

{{this post contains affiliate link}}

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Redeemed! {this is my story & song}

Last year through the blessing of Providence in answer to prayers of mine on several levels, I was introduced to both a product {Plexus Slim} and a business opportunity {Plexus Worldwide} that are improving my health and have given me an amazing means by which to minister to other people and bring in extra monthly income. I have been a huge proponent of healthy eating and lifestyle through the years (Bulk Herb Store, Beeyoutiful, and Trim Healthy Mama, anyone?), and so this new opportunity has fit perfectly into what I know and love. I have been having so.much.fun. with the whole amazing, crazy journey!!


{golden morning light streaming into our souls . . .
and other captures of our country life}

Even with all that I knew previously, since I have begun to read and listen and research more about health and how the body works, devouring every piece of information and research that I can possible take in, I sometimes feel that I knew nothing before in comparison to all that I’m learning now! It’s been pretty intense! But it never really feels like work to me~it has all been one big learning experience that motivates and excites me every single day! :)

And the best part of it all? Hands down, the very best part is the opportunity to talk to people every week, pray for them and with them, and then later to hear how the health problems they have dealt with for years are often making a dramatic turn around for the better. Huge improvements in diabetes, weight loss, chronic pain, and skin conditions are only the very tip of the iceberg. Friends and family are experiencing real life changing results and are so grateful. What answers to prayer! How fun that I have had part in sharing and praying with them, and to see God bring about results with a product that *works*.

Did I say seeing people helped was my favorite part?? Yes, it is! But on a personal level, comes a close second, or perhaps a tie! My own personal growth the past eight months may just be the most amazing phenomenon of all. Loving and sharing a product that helps so many people has taught me so much about myself, has caused me to study and grow and develop and practice skills that will help me to unashamedly share this new-found “treasure” most effectively.

In all of it, I have seen over and over again how this new “thing” in my life compares so closely to My First LOVE, Jesus! It is reminding me and teaching me that when I love Him, know Him, realize afresh who He IS, see what He can do, what He DOES do in our world and in people’s lives, how what He has told us in His Word is TRUTH and how when I get involved in what He cares about, it’s completely overwhelming {in a GOOD way}, beyond exciting, and definitely LIFE CHANGING!

Sharing a product reminds me afresh of the teachers in my life who have taught me to share the Gospel! Again, there are so many similarities in both! It takes boldness to share with other people. Bumps in the road happen. You don’t speak as eloquently as you’d like. Someone turns away from what you have shared with them . . . and yet you know in your heart that this. is. REAL. So you turn back to time of study and digging for answers . . . because you know they are there. You practice a thirty second spiel, as well as an in-depth presentation for the moments when you have more time or someone asks for further information.

Yesterday I had the blessed {and rare} gift of time to myself for about three hours! Husband and Son were gone for the day, and my kind mother in law kept my girls so that I could go off for some beauty treatment, to pick up necessities such as cream for tomorrow’s coffee, and toilet paper~ since at least one bathroom in the house has been serving only tissues for the past week, and also a stop at Staples for office organization and staples and printer ink! I felt like a kid in a candy store, slowly walking up and down each isle, trying to be a savvy shopper and escape with my life, er, pocketbook, while 112 beautiful items were vying for my attention!!

The hymn, Redeemed, has been in my heart for the past several days, so as I made the drive to the shopping center, I was singing freely and loving the uninterrupted mini praise service there in husband’s big red truck {he and I had swapped vehicles for the day}.

Redeemed–how I love to proclaim it!
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
Redeemed through His infinite mercy,
His child, and forever, I am.

Redeemed, redeemed,
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
Redeemed, redeemed,
His child, and forever, I am. 

Redeemed and so happy in Jesus,
No language my rapture can tell;
I know that the light of His presence
With me doth continually dwell.

I think of my blessed Redeemer,
I think of Him all the day long;
I sing, for I cannot be silent;
His love is the theme of my song.

I know I shall see in His beauty
The King in whose law I delight;
Who lovingly guardeth my footsteps,
And giveth me songs in the night.

As I was singing, I contemplated how in my life I feel extremely blessed and wealthy in so many areas, while a friend may be going through the most difficult trial she has ever experienced. And how at any point, and in a blink of an eye, our situations could be completely changed, reversed. We never know what a day will bring forth and how God is moving circumstances to our good and His glory. And just because I view my present circumstance as “good”, but hers “bad” . . . in God’s economy and because we are His children, all of it is working together for the GOOD.

I thought of Jesus’ disciples who rejoiced because they were able to do miracles and cast out devils in His name. Wonderful stuff! But Jesus told them not to rejoice over those things . . . but simply to rejoice that their names were written in Heaven!

Bottom line? Of course I want the blessings . . . of course I don’t ask for hard things . . . but no matter what, in ALL circumstances, my glory is in Jesus Christ! Redeemed, how I LOVE to proclaim it! Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb! Redeemed through His infinite mercy, His child and forever I am! I think of my blessed Redeemer. I think of Him ALL the day long! I SING for I cannot be silent. His love is the theme of my song!

When everything else is gone, whether in this life through way of tragedy or in the End when time ceases, the only thing that ANY OF US will have left is Jesus~if we are His Redeemed. And those who don’t have Him will have nothing.at.all.

This trumps everything! I like and love a lot of things in my blessed life . . . {not the least of which is a certain company I work for and a product that I share with others}, but Jesus is my Passion!

{We have been living on our back porch and outdoor living space.
I like to be alone in the quiet mornings,
but occasionally I don’t get out there early enough
or a child wakes earlier than usual. On this particular morning,
the sun came bursting through the tree tops,
creating the sunbeams in the heavy morning air.
My girls exclaimed simultaneously,
“It’s an angel of the Lord!” and asking, “Momma, is it an angel?!”}

Upon arriving at the nail spa, I was seated before a young woman who was assigned to take care of me. We didn’t talk the entire time~I relish solitude {if you’re a mom, you know why} and tire easily of “making pleasantries”~ but somehow we were soon discussing the home she was raised in which led to my asking her if she loves and follows Jesus, which continued on in further meaningful conversation. It turned out that she does know the Lord, though she admitted that sometimes she isn’t walking closely with Him . . . perhaps more along the lines of “trailing behind” Him. Those were her words. :) We talked about the constant struggle to keep balanced all that is present and in our face with what is Eternal and the REAL reality! I pray that our conversation was an encouragement to her as it was to me!

After my other shopping errands were complete, I headed for home and my babies. Travelling down a oft-traveled highway, I noticed a car in the lane to my right that seemed to be drifting pretty close to the line that separated us. I looked, and looked again, but I wasn’t sure what their intentions were since I didn’t see turning signals. I paused though, because I thought perhaps the driver was trying to move into my lane. Still nothing.

By this time we were approaching a major intersection, so I sped up, returning to normal speed, since no one is supposed to change lanes in the middle of the intersection anyway. Just at that moment I felt my steering wheel jerk in my hands as Big Red Truck bounced a bit to the left. I quickly recovered, but knew immediately the little white car must have been the cause. Sure enough . . . we traveled down the road a bit further and pulled off to the side of the road. He exited his vehicle, mohawk hair-do and all, and I was dreading what I thought might be an angry outburst as I have often seen from irate drivers beside the road! Turns out he started motioning and mouthing, “Are you OK? Are you OK?”

I was OK, but wanted to make sure the truck was OK, so we looked everything over, and truly, not a mark on my {husband’s!!} vehicle! His rental {which he was NOT worried about} had a huge black rubber tire mark, but not much more than that. He apologized profusely . . . and I was just so grateful all was well with us all!! This was my first-ever experience with a collision of any type, and really, I hope never to experience that moment of “what is going on??” disbelief in any form again!

As we turned to leave and return to our vehicles, I stopped him and said, “Hey, are you a Christian?” He said, “No, but I try to live a good life.” This after telling me he was going to tell the rental company that he had come out to the parking lot and found his car in this condition?! Kinda makes you wonder about people’s definition of “trying to live a good life”. But on with the conversation . . . I told him Jesus is coming soon and explained in a few sentences the creation, the fall, and our need for Jesus, the ONLY way to God. It was truly only a 30 second spiel on Route 30 before we parted ways. May God capture his heart along life’s journey . . . and truly make him ready for eternity.

I headed for home, once again singing, Redeemed! Feeling so grateful for many things, safety somewhere near the top in the moment, and a fresh awareness of the presence of God directing each step of my life. Did God allow a mishap so one of His children could tell a lost soul to get ready for eternity? Or was it that for once {i have so often failed!} I took the opportunity that life presented to be bold and share the most important thing? Maybe it’s both. And maybe the how doesn’t matter. Living faithful to our calling and the Lord of our lives is what matters when it’s all been said and done.

“Oh LORD, I know the way of man is not in himself; it is not in man who walks to direct his own steps. My times are in Your hand. Our sufficiency is from God. In all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”

Several men, previously Amish, but now converted and who have left the Amish church, were speaking in our Sunday School elective class this morning. When asked why the Amish don’t evangelize, the answer given by one of these men captured my attention! He said, “You’ll never evangelize if you don’t know where you stand.” He went on to explain that in their teachings, one can never be sure of their standing with God. You do good works and hope that they are enough, but you can’t ever know for sure.

There are probably many reasons why Christians don’t regularly share their faith, but this observation is probably true for silent Believers as well. Often times we lack boldness, or skill, or knowledge, but perhaps more than anything, when we are unsure of our standing with Jesus and are not daily, actively rejoicing in the great Salvation He has given us, perhaps that is why we lose sight of the important things and fail to express our faith. When we know and rejoice in our redemption, the spilling over happens more naturally!

Also, this statement by one of our pastors today . . . “Let the reminder of your salvation guide you in a life of praise!”
Yes, this! Redeemed! How I love to proclaim it . . . this is my story and song of praise to the God of my life.

So consider yourself forewarned: if you hang around me long enough, sooner or later you’re sure to hear something about Plexus. But from the bottom of my heart, I hope that the thing you will first see or hear or sense is Jesus~real and at work in my life.

All packaging and testimonies about Plexus are accompanied with this, “These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.” But when it comes to Jesus and His work of Salvation on our behalf, there are promises and guarantees to treat and cure and prevent the disease and decay of our souls! All of God’s promises are YES because of Jesus to those of us who know and love Him. :) Hallelujah! Amen!

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