Nope, Not Going To Do It !!!

I’m not sure about you, but there has been too many times in my life that I have struggled with things that are of this world.  I have been discouraged over bad habits and moral issues. What I have found is that with God’s saving grace He made a huge life changing difference in my life. I would think that we all have a part of us that we want others to see when they look at us. I call it the Sunday best attitude. I know I have the part that I want others to see, like my good behavior side. Then there is the part that is hidden away so nobody see’s them. There are those things we humans are ashamed of. Which by the way, God, always see’s, but not those around us. Which is intimidating to me. I don’t know about you, but to know that God is watching everything I am doing, makes me not want to do stupid things.

167104-Trust-GodHas there ever been a time or a situation where you are trying to make new friends and in the pit of your stomach, you are hoping they never learn about whatever it is that you are ashamed of? As I was talking to a friend we got on the subject of accepting Jesus Christ and what it means to have a relationship with Him. She was heavily into drugs and lost her family because of it.  There is a misconception that we must be perfect in order for God to love us. Hello!!!! Satan would rather have us carry the guilt, shame and condemnation instead of us trusting in God. There is NO way we are ever going to be perfect, and God knows this. Satan doesn’t want us to focus on the Lord. When we have a personal relationship with God, we can’t hide who we are and we can’t hide all the bad stuff from Him. No matter how much I have tried to cover something up, God knew the truth.

Not so long ago (4 weeks), I started doing a Bible Study called Seamless by Angie Smith. When I first looked at the book, I was thinking I was going to just do it by myself. The problem with that is that I am a slacker and I put things off. I could easily come up with many excuses to not so a Bible Study, let alone lead one. I knew I needed to do a study that would really speak to me and not be over my head. I kept praying and researching studies I could do since I know that I need to get a better understand of God’s Word. I kept saying, “Nope, not going to do it.” .

SeamlessAfter I got my book in the mail and thumbed through the pages, I realized that this isn’t the kind of study that should just be me studying it alone. It was a small group Bible Study. As I was reading it, I knew that I had to step outside of my comfort zone. My gift is not to teach others. I have always seen myself as a person that is great one on one. I thoroughly enjoy witnessing to others about how God changed my life and has been there for me. Don’t get me wrong, I have had my fair share of not doing what God wanted me to do. But, with this study, the message I received from God was that I needed to run this Bible Study since God put it on my heart to do this. I hesitated a great deal and went searching for others to do the leading. Eventually I decided I might as well bite the bullet and see how it comes out. Well, I didn’t decide, God opened the doors and made it possible. Without God, I don’t think this would have happened.

Angie Smith’s “Seamless” Bible Study made it easier. The layout and her way of simplifying how I look at the Bible has been more than helpful. If you have been looking for a study, this is a good one. I was extremely stressed over leading this group. Like I said, my gift isn’t to teach, it’s to witness and be a behind the scenes kind of person. That is where my comfort zone is at. I just hope the ladies are all going to learn something since I am leading this group in a way I would do it at my dining room table. It’s very casual.

There are many that believe that I know much more about the Bible than I do. Don’t get me wrong, I do know a good deal, but I am and always will be a work in progress. I find the New Testament much easier to understand. The Old Testament is another story. History is one of my weak points. I don’t get the whole genealogy thing and how things fit together. But, through this Bible Study, I am finding it easier to piece things together and see the importance of how everything makes sense. My church does a few other Bible Studies, but they are way over my head and makes me feel pretty stupid at times. Which makes me not want to participate. For those who can grasp studies like Precepts, that is awesome, but it isn’t for me. When I did go to them, I felt lost with all the terminology and the grand scheme of it all. I would come home and felt defeated the moment I opened up the workbooks. Thankfully there are alternatives to Precepts. My church has so many alternatives and Bible study opportunities, which makes it nice for those who are like me.

As I continue with this study(Seamless), I am finding that I need to put my trust in God even more, even when I don’t understand why or how things Trusting-God_thappen. I always thought I did, and then I find out that I need to totally give everything to Him and not hold back. It is an all or nothing kind of thing. If I try to hold onto a small amount of control, then I’m not fully trusting in God. There are a great deal of frustrations and stumbling blocks that I have had to deal with off and on, control freak kind of stuff is just one example.

Some of the questions in this study has been hard to answer since I would prefer not to focus on them right now or maybe forever. They are part of my past, not my future. But then, my past defines who I am to some degree. There were times when I didn’t think that God knew I was here. I didn’t know where He was. I know He was there, but I was a doubting Thomas off and on. Why would a loving God allow things to happen in my life or others peoples lives that are devastating? I have to admit that I was feeling like a modern day Job and I still do at times. OK, a lot of times.

At this point in my life I have chosen to not let situations from my past corrupt who I am now. It hasn’t always been easy to trust in God. But, I can sincerely say that because of the hard times, I am a better person for it. I left home very young. I ran away when I was a teenager. Shortly after I was out of the house, I got married at 17 and became pregnant with my daughter Jessica before Chuck and I were married. I have a great deal of medical issues and shouldn’t be here right now. This Bible study helped me understand that while I have made terrible mistakes,  I know in my heart that God wasn’t pleased by my actions. He still blessed me in ways that I know I don’t deserve. That’s when God’s grace and mercy comes in.  While I don’t like what has gone on in my life, I can say that because of my bad decisions and medical problems, God made it possible for me to use these hard times to reach other who may be going through the same things I did and still am.

abraham-movie-sarah-2One of the things that has really touched my heart during this study is that when we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we are a new person. Throughout the Old Testament, we see how God changed a persons name. Like Abrams name was changed to Abraham. Abram and Sarai were transformed into new people and God gave them the gift of new names. Basically they are were made new. Which is pretty awesome.  What I get out of the story of Abraham and Sarah is that when we put our faith in God, we aren’t the same person we use to be. For me this important and a game changer. I say that because I know that I’m not who I use to be. I don’t know about you, but to know that God has changed the person who you were into a new person with a new name, is pretty cool.

In closing, I just want to say that God wants us to come to Him and trust him in all situations. He is in control and knows what is best for me, even if I don’t understand why something is happening. Emotionally we become stable and I have found over and over again that when I do things based on how I feel, my decisions and choices have the ability to make things worse.

john-16-33-550x320For me, I know that I must trust in God and that my faith is the key when it comes to trusting Him in all situations and circumstances. I don’t need to know all the answers because God is in control. At the end of the day I choose to trust in Him no matter what. God loves all of us and He has big plans for our lives. I can guarantee you that life isn’t going to be easy. God never said it would be. There will be times that you may not think you can make it through in one piece. Jesus tells us in John 16:33, “In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration.” I would say that it is important to keep in mind that we don’t need to understand everything, we just need to have faith in God and He will be there for us when life seems unfair, unbearable and difficult.

Open-Mindedness- Yes or No?

I have always considered myself a person who is open minded. In the past few years, I have revised my viewpoints. I’m finding that if I become open-minded over all things then I would be betraying God.  With all the things going on in the world, as a Christian, I feel like I need to show respect and at the same time be cautious when it comes to various things that are against the teachings of Christ. The best route to take is to hold fast to the Truth, while being compassionate. Jesus states in 1 John1:14 that we should be like Jesus, we must be willing to offer mercy and grace.

21stODCA friend of mine posted what they feel when it comes to tolerance that I wholeheartedly agree with. Pastor Bernie Larson said:

A lot is said today about tolerance. People plead for broad-mindedness,tolerance and charity. In some sense we need understanding and charity.In the Christian experience, there is a need for intolerance in certain areas.
In some things, Jesus Christ was the most tolerant Person who ever lived-but in other things, He was the most intolerant. He was intolerant toward hypocrisy,selfishness and toward sin. He was tolerant toward the sinner, but intolerant toward the evil that enslaves the sinner.
He was narrow about the way of salvation. See Matt.7:13,14.” Enter by the narrow gate…. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life.” Only the way of the cross leads home to heaven! Bernie

Some have wondered how Jesus can be loving and truthful and at the same time be intolerant.

We live in a world that has all forms of religion and faiths. While we must live in harmony with those of other faiths, we must also remember that our eyes and hearts are focused on Christ alone. I have friends and family members that aren’t Christians and they come from many different viewpoints. When I am around others that don’t worship or believe God, I try to make sure to not be hateful or judgmental.  As a Christian, I am committed to following Jesus Christ and the truths that have been revealed by God.  There are many religions that have been deceived by faiths that are corrupting our hearts and minds. It is as if mankind has been infected by a virus that’s deadlier than Ebola.  I have found that I pretty much have no problem letting others know what I believe.

matthew7I get rather ticked off when people worship another god instead of the God in the Bible. They say they are worshiping the same God, but in reality they are far from God. They say we needed to be united no matter what the differences are is pure hogwash and dangerous thinking. I know they have free will. But! When I hear pastors or church leaders say that we must accept all people for who they are no matter what they believe has me cautious of that pastor or church leader. There are a few church leaders that are OK with the “Everything is OK as long as we come together and unite as one thought”.  There was a time when I had no problem dealing with other religions organizations. I figured it was a good thing to work together for a higher purpose for the sake of community. Reality hit me smack dab in my gut and I’m not at the same place mentally or spiritually any longer.

We are told that we need to love our neighbors and our enemies. I have a tad bit of a problem with that one. In reality hating them won’t get me far.  I don’t think we should be tolerant if what they are believing doesn’t line up with the Bible. When it comes to false teaching and doctrines,  we shouldn’t  just say, “OK, you can believe that.” When people believe in false gods, they are lost. There comes a time when you need to talk to the person/group about who God really is and what the Bible has to say. Just because someone may have good intentions or they are a good person, it doesn’t matter if you don’t accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.

As I close out this blog post, I just want to say that as Christians, we aren’t suppose to accept or support false religions. There is no fence sitting. When it comes to being a child of God and a child It is what it isof the devil, there is no common ground. You cannot worship God and Satan at the same time. You either are or your not, no in betweens. While I respect other peoples view points, I will somewhat respect their free will since anyone has the right to worship whoever they choose or not at all. But and this is a big but, I will not compromisee when it comes to my faith in Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the only way. When it comes to my faith in Jesus Christ and the Bible being the inspired Word of God, I would say I am narrow minded. I will not allow false teaching and doctrines to enter my brain or heart. My pastor did a pretty awesome sermon on this topic recently. This sermon has got to be one of my favorite ones that Pastor Ray shared with us. Pastor Ray was spot on…

When it comes to tolerance in the Bible it means to allow sin and evil to exist without doing anything to stop it. Look at what the Prophet Habakkuk said about God, “Your eyes are too pure to look on evil; you cannot tolerate wrong” (Hab 1:13).  Sin can be forgiven, but it is never tolerated. God commands us to forgive, but He never encourages us to tolerate sin. There is a clear difference.

Worshipping God is More Imporatant than AC

AC is Broke- OH NOAt my church, our air conditioner has broke down. It needs to be replaced. While I don’t like being hot, my wondering mind was thinking about how spoiled we are in America. Some people were grumbling and complaining about how hot it was at church. I do NOT like the heat. I hate it. One of the main reasons I hate it is because it wrecks havoc on my body. I have the chronic form of Guillian Barre Syndrome and I have Myasthenia Gravis. Both of these are auto-immune diseases and from what my Drs say, I should not be here right now. Heat has a way of putting me into a crisis and anything can happen and I would not survive. OK, now I am getting off track.

The Fowlers Church
The Fowlers are having a conference. They have come so far and I be that there are no AC units around;

Christians in America are spoiled rotten. I think about our missionaries in foreign countries. One of the families our church sponsors has 3 children and they live among the Gumuz people in Ethiopia. They started up a medical clinic and now they have planted a number of churches. It’s nothing for them to walk miles to get to church. They worship God in huts that have none of the amenities we enjoy. The Fowlers and those who want to attend church must walk miles to get there. They don’t have power-points or many of the modern conveniences we enjoy. Many times they hold church in what I would say is a leinto. It may not have walls. They have seats, but they are boards. They aren’t cushy. They may spend all day at church and we grumble over having to drive 15 minutes out of the way. We grumble because the clock says 12:15 and we should be out of church. People in other countries would love to be able to go to church and are grateful for every minute they are given to worship Christ.

There was a lady that is in Pakistan that believes that Christians are spoiled here in America. Some would say we are blessed while those from other countries say we are spoiled. This lady was saying how people in America think they need huge mega churches with soft comfy chairs with air conditioners that keep them cool. They also have pastors that tickle their ears instead of a multi-million dollar church building with air conditioners to freeze them and nice padded seats and a preacher to tickle their ears. They believe that Americans are not preaching the uncompromising word of God anymore. Many are more concerned with worldly pleasures and solicitations for money, then with following Christ and doing his will. I can’t totally disagree with her statements.

gettingbible2I was watching a video not so long ago about how this group of Chinese people received brand new Bibles. By the looks in the video, these people never had their own Bible. When they opened up the box and seen that they had them, they wept. They were so overjoyed to have a Bible. As I was watching the video, I realized that I too for granite that I can order one on Amazon or go to my local store to get one. I have several Bibles that vary in translations. In my house I have about 15 Bibles and I carry them in my car so I can hand them out to others that may need one. This is a luxury that many don’t have. To see how overjoyed these people were over getting a Bible of their own humbled me. One day I would like to show that video in church. We are a blessed people and we can’t get past the things that are petty. How many people get excited when they receive a Bible of their own?

Since our air conditioner went down, a few of the people are upset and they need it fixed right now according to some. Well, I am a grumbler also, but this last Sunday I was thinking about how nice it was to have the doors open and people singing worship songs to the Lord. In my mind I was thinking about how awesome it would be if someone that may have never heard the Gospel was walking by the church and they were listening to the music or message. Churches use to have it where the doors were opened and all who wanted to come in could.

I get rather frustrating when it comes to people getting butt hurt because the air conditioner is down. How awesome it would be if a stranger was walking by and he paused for a moment to listen to the service. There have been times I have grumbled over getting hot. But then, I need to remember that I’m not at church to have my ego stroked. I am at church to worship with other Christians, even if the air conditioner is broke. I won’t go into naming names, but if someone is grumbling about the AC and not thinking about the message the pastor is preaching, then why are they there?

BarbaraA long time ago, I came to the realization that I’m not at church because it is a great way to socialize I’m not there to eat all the yummy stuff Barbara makes, even though they are pretty awesome. I’m not there because of the music. If that was so, I would be out of there. I like hymns, but I don’t like the songs we sing. If I judged my church on the music alone, I would be out of there.If I was going there because of the settings on a thermostat, I would not be there. All of these things are nice, but that’s not what is important.

I’m so very thankful that I live in a place where I am free to worship Christ the way I want to. I worship the very same God that is in the Bible. I’m thankful that Pastor Ray goes by the Bible alone. Last Sunday the sermon was awesome and one that I plan on sharing with others. For those who grumbled about the AC and couldn’t or wouldn’t open their minds to what was being said missed out big time.

Staring Back At Me On My Plate



I was reading an article about cute little piggies. I was also having a discussion with my grandson Tyson last week about eating foods at restaurants when they leave the heads on them. I have huge issues when it comes to eating food that still has the heads on them. For example, when I go to Red Lobster, the first thing I see when I walk in is the lobsters that are in a tank. You can choose which one you want to eat for dinner. I’m sorry, I just can’t get past the idea of how they were alive a few minutes before and now they are looking at me on my plate.

This is Ricky, our bull… He was a sweet bull

There are times when I think I could totally become a vegetarian when it comes to seeing the animals before they die. We had a bull and we named him Ricky. He was an awesome bull. Well, we didn’t own him, our landlord did. We just did everything for him since his landlord wouldn’t feed him or do anything with him. There came a day when the landlord came over to kill and butcher Ricky. We were suppose to get half the meat since we paid for everything for him. When the time came and we were given the meat, I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t get past the images of Ricky standing there by me and wanting petted. He would break out of his fence area and come up to the house and would look in the windows as if he wanted to come in. We ended up giving the meat away since I couldn’t handle eating him and neither could my husband.

When I was younger, my parents would race animals and then we would butcher them. One of the cows we had his name was Charlie. Us kids would play with him and he was so awesome. When the bus dropped us off, the first thing I seen was Charlie hanging from a tree. To this day, I have that image in my mind. I stopped eating beef until I knew that all of the meat was gone that was from Charlie. My parents did the same thing with a couple pigs we had. We called them Betty and Jerome. They were named after some good friends. We came home and Jerome was hanging on the same tree Charlie was. It was fruits and vegetables for me for a long long time.

cute-baby-pigsOn the page I went to, the people were told that they were going to do some taste-test sample of bacon. Instead they were shown a little baby pig. There is something about looking into the face of a cute baby piggy and then the idea that it will be killed so I can have bacon. I think I would like to keep the piggy alive and skip the bacon. When they seen the little piglet face to face, they melted away. I wonder if people were to look at the animals they are eating face to face if they would turn vegetarian. I can see myself doing that with no problem at all.

As I said earlier, my grandson Tyson and I were talking about the lobsters at Red Lobster. All I can imagine is these lobsters that was alive as I walked in are now DSCF0769being put in a boiling hot pot and screaming to the top of their tiny little lungs. They are saying, “Help Me, Help Me, Please“. Then boom, they get boiled alive. People say they can’t feel, I don’t know if I agree with that one. If they are screaming and trying to claw their way out of the boiling pot, then I would think they were hurting. If I order lobster or another seafood, I make sure there is nothing looking at me. I love Alaskan King Crab and lobster, but not if  I see it alive just a few minutes ago. I would be more apt to buy it and then set it free, lol.

Then there is fish. Specifically Trouts. I love Rainbow Trout. But, when a restaurant decides it is a great idea to give me the whole trout, head and all, I am sick to my stomach. Here is this trout that has these eyes and mouth staring at me. Even though I know it is dead, the reality is that it was once alive and gasping for air as it died. Oh my goodness, all kinds of thoughts runs through my mind at that point. So, I loose my appetite since I am looking at this face. I wonder if he is the daddy to a trout like little Nemo. Instead of taking care of it’s fishy family, it is deader than dead on my plate with a knife and fork ready to dig in. At that point I have to get a hold of the waitress to have the head removed or change my order. I am done by that time.

Down the street from me there is a restaurant called the, “Gun Barrel”. It serves all kinds of game meats and such. Now the issue I have is when I walk into restaurants like this and they have what was once alive heads on the walls. While I am eating whatever it is, there are eyes staring at you. Yes, the animals heads on the wall are dead, but at one time they were alive. Egads, I can’t have body-less animals staring me down. There are actually a number of restaurants that use these heads as decor. I hate it and I can’t handle it. One of my favorite restaurants has one placed over their fireplace. I can’t eat in that section.

I’m not sure why I am a person that eats meat since I feel the way I do. I love a good burger or whatever else as long as I can’t see the body before hand. I also know that if the animal is being killed to feed people, then that is fine as long as they are humane about it. It bothers me when people kill animals just to kill them. If they are going to go hunting, I would hope they are doing that to feed their families or others who need to eat. I don’t like it that animals are killed just for the sport of it or to have the animal sitting on a mantle or wall.