Graze: To feed on growing grasses.



The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul.


-Ps. 23:1-6

Growing up on a farm, I used to watch the cows, sheep & horses graze in the pasture. Each morning we would open the gate to the barnyard and they knew there was freedom from that small pen they were in. They also knew there was nice green grass beyond the barnyard. Once the gate was open, look out because those animals wanted to get where the tall, green grass grew – the pasture! They would take off sometimes even running up the old fenced lane that went up over the hill through the cornfield to the lush green pasture on the other side of the farm. There they would graze for a while then lay down and rest for a while then graze some more. They did this all day long. Come evening we would go over to the pasture’s edge and call the cows – 'come boss, 'come boss. They would gather at the pasture gate. Sometimes we would have to go round up a few stragglers and when all were accounted for, we’d open the lane gate and back over the hill they would go to the barnyard for the night. The next morning was the same routine, day after day.
What a life, huh?!

Oh that we could just graze and rest in shady green pastures all day long! But we can rest and graze in God’s green pastures and restore our souls . . . The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. (Ps. 23:1) I believe God wants us to slow down and “rest” and “graze” and “feed” on His Word. Life throws so many things our way and we are so busy – busy doing good things. But are we running on empty a good share of the time? Are we feeling stretched to extreme? Are we content with who we are in God’s divine providence? Slow down and take some time to just leisurely graze, rest a while, then graze and feed on the good things God has provided for you. Graze, rest, and enjoy the “shady green pastures” of God’s abundant love, grace, and mercy.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Burned Biscuits - A lesson we all should learn.


A must read as posted by - 
MidgetMomma.com


When I was a kid, my Mom liked to make breakfast food for dinner every now and then. I remember one night in particular when she had made breakfast after a long, hard day at work. On that evening so long ago, my Mom placed a plate of eggs, sausage and extremely burned biscuits in front of my dad. I remember waiting to see if anyone noticed!

All my dad did was reach for his biscuit, smile at my Mom and ask me how my day was at school. I don't remember what I told him that night, but I do remember watching him smear butter and jelly on that ugly burned biscuit. He ate every bite of that thing...never made a face nor uttered a word about it!

When I got up from the table that evening, I remember hearing my Mom apologize to my dad for burning the biscuits. And I'll never forget what he said, "Honey, I love burned biscuits every now and then."

Later that night, I went to kiss Daddy good night and I asked him if he really liked his biscuits burned. He wrapped me in his arms and said, "Your Mom put in a hard day at work today and she's real tired. And besides--a little burned biscuit never hurt anyone!"

As I've grown older, I've thought about that many times. Life is full of imperfect things and imperfect people.
I'm not the best at hardly anything, and I forget birthdays and anniversaries just like everyone else. But what I've learned over the years is that learning to accept each other's faults and choosing to celebrate each other’s differences is one of the most important keys to creating a healthy, growing, and lasting relationship.

And that's my prayer for you today...that you will learn to take the good, the bad, and the ugly parts of your life and lay them at the feet of God. Because in the end, He's the only One who will be able to give you a relationship where a burnt biscuit isn't a deal-breaker!

We could extend this to any relationship. In fact, understanding is the base of any relationship, be it a husband-wife or parent-child or friendship!

So, please pass me a biscuit, and yes, the burned one will do just fine.
And PLEASE pass this along to someone who has enriched your life--I just did!

"Don't put the key to your happiness in someone else's pocket--keep it in your own."

Be kinder than necessary because everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.

"Life without God is like an unsharpened pencil--it has no point"
-Posted by MidgetMomma.com

Friday, December 27, 2013

Crockpot Christmas Crack - Or Better Know As Peanut Clusters!

  This is super easy!  

Cook time: 2 Hr 30 Min  Prep time: 15 Min  Serves: a LOT
Ingredients
1 - 16 oz jar(s) unsalted peanuts
1 - 16 oz. jar(s) salted peanuts
1 - 12 oz bag(s) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 - 12 oz bag(s) milk chocolate chips
2 - 10 oz bag(s) peanut butter chips
2 - 1 lb pkg white almond bark or vanilla candy coating
Directions
1. Layer all ingredients in a large crockpot (starting with peanuts). Turn the pot on low, cover with lid, and leave sitting for 2 hours. Then, remove lid and stir to combine. Replace lid and leave sitting for another 30 minutes. Stir again and then spoon mixture on to wax paper or non-stick aluminum foil. Allow to harden for at least 1 hour. Enjoy!

I tried this recipe out this Christmas and these were a hit! Everyone liked them and wanted the recipe!! I liked that you just put it in the crockpot and left it, stirred it and dropped them onto wax paper - super, super easy and yummy!!


Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Things to do Every Day of the Year - not just Christmas!

These are some special things we should do not just on Christmas but every single day of the year.  Life would be a much better place if everyone would put forth this sort of effort to each other.  Let's all give it a try . . .

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

A Shepherd's Prayer - Move Me Closer - sung by Evie Karlsson



I've always loved this song - it is my desire . . .

A Shepherd's Prayer

Twas the night before Christmas,
And my only desire
Was peace among kids, and to rest by the fire.
I had just settled down in my favorite chair;
When I heard a small voice, and a cry of despair.
As I stared at the hearth I saw a strange sight!
Our nativity scene, in the flickering light
Seemed almost alive!
And how could this be!
One lonely shepherd was calling to me.
***Move me closer, move me closer
Move me closer to the Child.
Let me see Him, let me hold His hand.
Move me closer to the Child.
***As you can well imagine, I was a bit surprised.
So with a shake of the head and a rub of the eyes
I took another look, and what did I see,
Without a doubt he was looking at me.

It seems in the hustle and bustle of things
In the wrapping of gifts, and the building of swings,
In assembling his scene, I'd been a bit hurried,
And understandably so, He was a little bit worried.
***Move me closer, move me closer
Move me closer to the Child.
Let me see Him, let me hold His hand.
Move me closer to the Child.
***You see, candy canes and holly trim
Didn't mean a thing to him.
If it kept him from his post
Beside the child he loved the most.

So as strange as it must seem,
Whether it was, or wasn't, a dream.
I placed him back where he belonged
As he sang again his simple song.
And now when we at Christmas share,
We sing his song:
A Shepherd's Prayer.
***Move me closer, move me closer
Move me closer to the Child.
Let me see Him, let me hold His hand.
Move me closer to the Child.
Move me closer to the Child.
***
Move Me Closer: A Shepherd's Prayer
written for and sang by Evie
on the compact disc entitled Evie's Christmas Memories

Monday, December 2, 2013

Chocolate Kiss Cherry Cookies

Chocolate Kiss Cherry Cookies  1 Cup Powdered Sugar  1 Cup Butter, Softened  2 teaspoons Maraschino Cherry Liquid  1/2 teaspoon Almond Extract  4 Drops Red Food Coloring   2 1/4 Cups Flour  1/2 teaspoon Salt  1/2 Cup Maraschino Cherries, Drained and Chopped    48 Milk Chocolate Candy Kisses   1. Preheat oven to 350º  2.Combine Powdered Sugar, Butter, Cherry Liquid, Extract, and Food Coloring in a bowl. Mix well 3.Add Flour and Salt. Mix well 4.Stir in the Cherries  5.Shape Dough into 1
(You Can't go wrong with Chocolate and Cherry!!)

Chocolate Kiss Cherry Cookies

1 Cup Powdered Sugar 
1 Cup Butter, Softened 
2 teaspoons Maraschino Cherry Liquid 
1/2 teaspoon Almond Extract
4 Drops Red Food Coloring
2 1/4 Cups Flour
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 Cup Maraschino Cherries, Drained and Chopped
48 Milk Chocolate Candy Kisses

1. Preheat oven to 350º
2.Combine Powdered Sugar, Butter, Cherry Liquid, Extract, and Food Coloring in a bowl. Mix well
3.Add Flour and Salt. Mix well
4.Stir in the Cherries
5.Shape Dough into 1" balls
6.Place 2" apart on ungreased sheets
7.Bake for 8 - 10 minutes or until you can see that the lower edge is a light golden brown
8. Remove from oven and press a candy kiss into the top each cookie.


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Give Thanks


BE THANKFUL...

Be thankful that you don't already have everything you desire. If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don't know something,
  for it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times.
  During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations,
  because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge,
  because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes.
  They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you're tired and weary,
  because it means you've made a difference.

It's easy to be thankful for the good things. A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are also thankful for the setbacks.

Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive. Find a way to be thankful for your troubles, and they can become your blessings.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Grandpa Tell Me Bout The Good Old Days - Shirley Brown

As I've sat at the hospital these last few days watching my 84 year old Dad received his knee replacement & also go thru the ups & downs of the fluctuating heartbeat with my little 82 year old mother, I couldn't help but think of this music video that Shirley Brown shared on FB recently . . . Good Old Days. As I watched the two of them many memories flooded my mind as I thought about all of the "good old days" they have spent together. This week mom & dad will be celebrating 64 years of marriage!  And with this union of 64 years my two brothers and myself have so many precious memories of life growing up on the farm with all of the hard work, the fun, the many life lessons learned and a home filled with lots of abundant love and laughter. Take a moment & enjoy this video! :)



Wednesday, November 13, 2013

"Trust Me"


"Trust Me" - just two little words but I must say, two powerful little words! What does it mean to trust . . . to really trust in someone or something? In looking at the word "trust" I think it actually has multiple meanings.  A full definition would include some of the following: To believe someone or something is reliable, good, honest, truthful, effective. To have confidence or to have total dependence. To hope or expect something is true. It is said that our relationships are founded on mutual love and trust. Our confidence, credence and conviction, our faith and hope, our stock and surety, our acceptance and assurance, our dependence and our reliance on a certain place, person, or thing. These are the building blocks that "trust" is built upon!

"A hope is more than resolve, and it is based on trust in a divine faithfulness that operates not only within history, but also beyond history". -John Polkinghorne, Times Literary Supplement



Here are some "Power Verses" to help you:

Trust God;
He is the Stronghold

Psalm 18:2 “The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.”
Psalm 91:2 “I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.”
Nahum 1:7 The LORD is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him. ”

Trust Bible Quotes

















Trust God; He is the Protector

2 Samuel 22:31 “As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the LORD is tried: he is a buckler to all them that trust in him.”
Job 13:15 Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him.”
Psalm 7:1 “O LORD my God, in thee do I put my trust: save me from all them that persecute me, and deliver me:”
Psalm 25:1, 2 “Unto thee, O LORD, do I lift up my soul. O my God, I trust in thee: let me not be ashamed, let not mine enemies triumph over me.”
Proverbs 30:5 “Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him.”

Trust God; He will Deliver as Promised

Psalm 9:10 And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee: for thou, LORD, hast not forsaken them that seek thee.”
Psalm 22:4 “Our fathers trusted in thee: they trusted, and thou didst deliver them.”
Psalm 37:5 “Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.”
Psalm 56:3 , 4 “What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee. In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.”
Psalm 71:5 “For thou art my hope, O Lord GOD: thou art my trust from my youth.”
Isaiah 26:3 “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.”
1 Timothy 4:10 For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe.”

Trust God; Nothing on Earth Can Compare
Psalm 20:7 “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the LORD our God.”
Psalm 32:10 Many sorrows shall be to the wicked: but he that trusteth in the LORD, mercy shall compass him about.”
Psalm 118:8 “It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.”
Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

Something to Consider: What are you trusting in? Where is your trust? 


Are you putting your faith and trust in the things of this world - in houses, land, possessions, people, places, money, governments? Or is your faith and trust in the Lord? 


Someone once said, "Some people seem to trust God with their eternal salvation, but they have trouble trusting Him for their every-day life". Every-day life, day in and day out,  can have a whole lot of "faith-builders" which will help to increase your trust in every area of your life whatever the situation may be.  Take each and every day as it comes, adjust your attitude, focus your faith, and put your trust to the ultimate test . . . TRUST GOD and GOD ALONE!


Take comfort from the above scripture words. You CAN 
trust God with whatever your needs may be TODAY.


Friday, November 8, 2013

Favorite Quotes

Here's some "Words of Wisdom" . . .

Music is a picture painted on a background of silence . . .

The one rowing the boat is never the one who rocks it . . .

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are . . .

Never look down on anybody unless you're helping
them up . . .

Compassion is what makes a person feel pain when someone else hurts . . .


The best way to appreciate your job is to imagine yourself without it . . .

When you feel terrific, notify your face . . .

Don't do only what you like to do, but learn to like what has to be done . . . 

A discussion seeks what is right - an argument seeks who is right . . .

The food that never goes up in price is food for thought . . .

I collect quotes - I think the wisdom of people's quotes is priceless.  They speak first hand of what that person has learned and gained through the knowledge, experience, time and lessons in life.  We can learn much from those around us and from the wisdom of those who have gone before us. Those who have been there and done that . . .


Mini Chicken Pot Pies With Just Four Ingredients



Mini Chicken Pot Pies with just four ingredients? Nope - you're not dreaming! 
Here's what you need: 
2 cups frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
1 cup diced cooked chicken
1 can (10 3/4 oz) condensed cream of chicken soup
1 can (16.3 oz) Pillsbury Grands! Flaky Layers refrigerated biscuits

Here's what you need to do: 1) Heat oven to 375°F.
In medium bowl, combine vegetables, chicken and soup; mix well.

2) Press each biscuit into 5 1/2-inch round. Place 1 round in each of 8 greased regular-size muffin cups. Firmly press in bottom and up side, forming 3/4-inch rim.

Spoon a generous 1/3 cup chicken mixture into each.

Pull edges of dough over filling toward center; pleat and pinch dough gently to hold in place.

3) Bake at 375°F 20 to 22 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown. Cool 1 minute; remove from pan.

I love these smaller potions!!! and so super quick and easy!! As the weather is getting cooler out these really taste good!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

10 Months and More . . . Alive and More

I had an interesting week... I went to Oklahoma for a couple of days. Never been there but enjoyed the shops, antiques, and fun!  Got back & went to work Wed. - Thurs. & Fri. my computer at work quit working so I couldn't work on the bulletin or newsletter so I only worked a while in the am doing other things I could do. So I went Christmas shopping in the afternoons - only about 50 days away!! I am so excited to go Christmas shopping!!  

Last year I was not able to do anything for Christmas or really even Thanksgiving!!  By this time last year my 2 brain tumors had enlarged (though I never knew I had them) & kept me from functioning-I was pretty much shutting down, hardly talking and not doing much of anything. It seems I was barely existing. I was there but not really there!  Doctors discovered the brain tumors December 7 - operated on December 12. I had about 6 months of recovery including 5.5 months of speech therapy. It took me about 6 months to really feel comfortable talking to people & actually conversing with them and about that long to get my energy level back and feel back to normal physically. So from "May 2013" to "this day", I have improved so much and feel totally back to the "Diana" I used to be!!  LOL!!  

So this November, I am really excessively, enthusiastic & exuberant and once again on top of the world!! And I  can't wait for the holidays . . .  to spend a much different holiday routine "this year" as compared to "last year"!!  The last 10 months have been a journey I and my family will "never" forget . . . the miracles of life, the miracles of recovery, the miracles of my doctor bills and finances, the miracles of prayer, the miracles of family & friends, & the many day to day awesome miracles of God alone who knows all and sees all and gives "abundant life".  Life is grand!  It's great to be "alive"!

Monday, October 21, 2013

How to Rekindle Your Inner Light

rekindle your inner light

"A mighty flame followeth a tiny spark".
– Dante Alighieri


Life, with all that it has to offer, can give greatly, and at times, it can also take away. Personal tragedies, whatever the cause, can wear anyone down. Even the strongest among us can find their inner light dimmed by these tough times.

When you find yourself drowning in darkness, take comfort in the simple fact that your light does not die. Light, in fact, is eternal. Believe that you have the power to rekindle it whenever you choose.
Start Your Campfire
Fires give comfort when you feel alone in the darkness of a cold forest. They provide warmth, safety and light. Building an inner fire can provide you with the same comfort. You can rekindle your inner fire and then use the light to find your way back to peace by remembering how a campfire is started when it’s needed most.
  • Gather the kindling
    Something cannot come from nothing. If you feel that your inner fire has burned out, it’s up to you to build a new one. Resist the temptation to suffer in the darkness and trust yourself to recover from the tragedy.

    Take it upon yourself to begin your healing and move on with your life. Find things in your life to help you restart your fire. Gather what you need from the woods and take it back with you. Prepare yourself to set a goal and then equip yourself with the necessary knowledge and skills to achieve that goal. Know what you need and then gather these things again.
  • Build the fire
    Before you can start the fire, you must first build the base upon which to make the fire.

    In the same manner a campfire is started, restarting your inner fire starts with a spark and some tinder. Setting concrete goals makes it easier to plan practical ways to achieve it. Outlining a plan of action is like stacking the kindling around the tinder. You have to know the kind of fire you need so you can decide how it is to burn. Starting a fire requires patience and perseverance. Don’t just throw a bunch of logs into a pile and hope that they catch fire. The same is true with your goals; start small—start with the tinder. When the tinder catches, move on to the kindling. And when the kindling catches, then you can move on to the larger fuel.
  • Feed the fire
    After you start the fire, you need to feed it to keep it burning. Add fuel to the fire. Work towards achieving the goal that you have set. Practice your skills or choose to learn new ones.

    The fire may dip at times, depending on external factors or even internal factors, but you must add fuel to keep it burning. This is the part that might seem tedious, but this is also the part where you remind yourself that you need the fire and that while keeping the fire alive may be troublesome, having to build a new one can be even more tiring.
  • Control the fire
    Fire does not produce its own fuel. When the fire is at the point where it’s no longer just a fragile flame, it runs the risk of being uncontrollable. Whether you toss in a block of wood, an old newspaper or a 200-year-old painting, fire does not discriminate and it will burn through what it touches. Take care of your inner fire, but control it so it does not consume you. Use your fire to ignite your passions in life and let your inner light guide you through your path in the world.   
    -Calex Blackwell                               www.thebridgemaker.com 

    ~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~

    I'm reminded of the old song "It Only Takes a Spark" we used to sing around the campfire . . .

    It only takes a spark
        To get a fire going
        And soon all those around
        Can warm up in the glowing

    That’s how it is with God’s love
        Once you’ve experienced it
        You’ll spread His love
        To everyone
        You’ll want to pass it on

    What a wondrous time is spring
        When all the trees are budding
        The birds begin to sing
        The flowers start their blooming

    That’s how it is with God’s love
        Once you’ve experienced it
        You’ll want to sing
        It’s fresh like spring
        You’ll want to pass it on

    I wish for you my friend
        This happiness that I’ve found
        You can depend on Him
        It matters not where you’re bound

    I’ll shout it from the mountain top
        I want the world to know
        The Lord of Love
        Has come to me
        I want to pass it on

    This is how God's Great Love Works!!
     

Friday, October 18, 2013

Have a Ducky Day (Nice)!

ReedyRiverDuckDerbyT.jpg

I was going to send someone a note and wanted to close my note by wishing them a "nice" day.  After thinking about that it sounded so . . . shall I plain and generic - "nice".  Sure we all want every day to be "nice".  But I just wanted to wish them an extra "nice" day - not a run of the mill, ho-hum day but something a little more than that.  Have you felt like you wanted to wish someone more than a simple "nice" day, "nice" time, "nice" visit, "nice" lunch, "nice" - but something a little bit more "extraordinaire"!!?? 

Well, that was just what I wanted to do!  So I looked up the synonyms for "nice".  Since my brain surgery in December and my 5 1/2 months of speech therapy, I am fascinated with words and find myself using words that I never used before - interesting isn't it?? Well, in looking up the word "nice" I found multiple synonyms for that simple little four letter word. 

Here is what I found:  admirable, amiable, approved, attractive, becoming, charming, commendable, considerate, cordial, courteous, delightful, ducky, fair, favorable, fine & dandy, friendly, gentle, good, gracious, helpful, inviting, kind, lovely, nifty, obliging, okay, peachy, pleasant, pleasurable, superior, swell, unpresumptuous, welcome, & winsome . . .  did you know there were that many words for "nice"???

Well, now those synonyms gave me something to think about.  
Each of these synonyms tend to give the word "nice" a new dimension to its simple meaning. Which word did I really want to use in wishing them a "nice" day?? I could say, "have a lovely, nifty, ducky, delightful, swell, pleasurable and unpresumptuous day"!!! Would that get the real message across to them? Is that too much??!!  . . . or I could just say to them . . . have a "ducky day" and know that all of those synonyms are wrapped up in the word "ducky" floating down the river of life making your day all of those special unique qualities!! LOL! 

Here's me wishing you just that . . . a "ducky day"! 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013



Holy Cow Cake
Chocolate Cake Mix (your preference), baked as directed
1-14 oz. can of sweetened condensed milk
8 oz. jar of caramel topping

4-5 Butterfingers candy bars, crushed
1-8 oz. cream cheese, softened
12 oz. Cool Whip

Prepare and bake cake as directed on package. Meanwhile, blend caramel and sweetened condensed milk.

After removing cake from oven, use a skewer or fork to poke holes into the top of the cake. Pour caramel mixture over cake. Crush candy bars and sprinkle half of them over the warm cake. Chill.

Stir cream cheese and Cool Whip together until blended well. Spread over cooled cake. Sprinkle with
remaining candy.


(moo!)      (moo!)      (moo!)
Being the "farm-girl at heart" that I am and the fact that I have a whole herd of Holstein cows in my collection . . . this recipe definitely caught my eye!!!  Holy Cow Cake!  It didn't help that Butterfinger candy bars are my all-time favorite!! Of course, anything with sweetened condensed milk, caramel and cream cheese in it has to be a winner, don't you think??!!!  This one is a "keeper" in this "farm-girl at heart's" cookbook!!  LOL!  It's easy to fix and hits the spot.  All you need is a great cup of coffee to top it off!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Get Service - Looking Through God's Eyes!


These glasses shed a whole new light on our day-to-day activities.  I think "maybe" . . . we should all have a pair of them! 

Maybe . . .  we would be able to "cope" with our little world better. 
Maybe . . . we would "reach out" to others that have needs that we don't even know about. 
Maybe . . .  we would "understand" the people around us and "see" where they are coming from. Why they do what they do!
Maybe . . . we would be better able to "encourage" those we come into contact with.
Maybe . . . we would be able to point those around us to "Jesus" who knows and cares what they are going through and has the answers.
Maybe . . . just . . . "Maybe" . . .


"Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ". -Gal. 6:2

"And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not". - Gal. 6:9

 
"As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith".  - Gal. 6:10

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

9-11 Twelve Years Later

As you reflect on September 11, 2001, pray this prayer. – It will bring you peace today … and every day. – May the Lord heal and protect our country! ~~@[123733579947:274:CALLED Magazine]

It's hard to believe that it has been 12 years since the terrible 9-11 Tragedy of the attack on the United States.  How time takes it toll and marches on!  I remember so vividly getting ready and heading for work that day.  I was a little stunned as the news flashed over the TV and then the radio in my car and the radio at work as the news began to unfold horrifically.  

Isn't it strange that most of us can remember the time of day, exactly what we were doing, who we were talking to . . . These things make such an impact on our lives and of course on the families and the lives that were lost in this tragedy.  I remember touching base with my daughters who were away from home attending an out-of-state university.  Fear seemed to grip us all as we went through that day experiencing the "unknown" - not knowing what to expect or where to turn.  Not knowing the extent of the casualties, the direction of our country and the military impact of such an attack. The "unknown" can be so fearful and disheartening.  

But when our "trust" is in God the fear dissipates. We may still be somewhat fearful but the bottom line is that the God of the Universe knows all, sees all, hears all, He has "all" under control.  We may not always understand everything about God's control but we can TRUST HIM - "for" - "with" - "in" - "through" - and "above" ALL THINGS"!  So put your trust in the one that can exchange our fears for a peace that fills our very being to overflowing - in spite of our fears!

Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.  Proverbs 3:5-6

Monday, September 9, 2013

How Much does a Miracle Cost?


A little girl went to her bedroom and pulled a glass jelly jar from its hiding place in the closet.

She poured the change out on the floor and counted it carefully. Three times, even.. The total had to be exactly perfect.. No chance here for mistakes.

Carefully placing the coins back in the jar and twisting on the cap, she slipped out the back door and made her way 6 blocks to Rexall's Drug Store with the big red Indian Chief sign above the door.

She waited patiently for the pharmacist to give her some attention, but he was too busy at this moment. Tess twisted her feet to make a scuffing noise. Nothing. She cleared her throat with the most disgusting sound she could muster. No good. Finally she took a quarter from her jar and banged it on the glass counter. That did it!

'And what do you want?' the pharmacist asked in an annoyed tone of voice.. I'm talking to my brother from Chicago whom I haven't seen in ages,' he said without waiting for a reply to his question.

'Well, I want to talk to you about my brother,' Tess answered back in the same annoyed tone. 'He's really, really sick....and I want to buy a miracle.'

'I beg your pardon?' said the pharmacist.

'His name is Andrew and he has something bad growing inside his head and my Daddy says only a miracle can save him now. So how much does a miracle cost?'

'We don't sell miracles here, little girl. I'm sorry but I can't help you,' the pharmacist said, softening a little.

'Listen, I have the money to pay for it. If it isn't enough, I will get the rest. Just tell me how much it costs.'

The pharmacist's brother was a well dressed man. He stooped down and asked the little girl, 'What kind of a miracle does your brother need?'

' I don't know,' Tess replied with her eyes welling up. I just know he's really sick and Mommy says he needs an operation. But my Daddy can't pay for it, so I want to use my money..'

'How much do you have?' asked the man from Chicago.

'One dollar and eleven cents,' Tess answered barely audible.
'And it's all the money I have, but I can get some more if I need to.'

'Well, what a coincidence,' smiled the man. 'A dollar and eleven cents---the exact price of a miracle for little brothers.'

He took her money in one hand and with the other hand he grasped her mitten and said 'Take me to where you live. I want to see your brother and meet your parents. Let's see if I have the miracle you need.'

That well-dressed man was Dr.  Carlton Armstrong, a surgeon, specializing in neuro-surgery. The operation was completed free of charge and it wasn't long until Andrew was home again and doing well.

Mom and Dad were happily talking about the chain of events that had led them to this place.

'That surgery, ' her Mom whispered.  'was a real miracle. I wonder how much it would have cost?'

Tess smiled. She knew exactly how much a miracle cost....one dollar and eleven cents...plus the faith of a little child. 
                                                                                                     -Unknown Author


In our lives, we never know how many miracles we will need.   Why don't we each look around and see if we can be a "miracle" to someone that needs a miracle in their life today!


MY OATH TO YOU...

When you are sad.....I will dry your tears.

When you are scared.....I will comfort your fears.

When  you are worried......I will give you hope.

When you are confused.....I will help you cope.

And when you are lost...and can't see the light, I shall be your beacon...shining ever so bright.

This is my oath.....I pledge till the end.

Why you may ask?....Because you're my friend.
                               
                                                                            -Unknown Author

Summer in September!

It's a little warm today - 98 degrees!
Photo: Had to post it.
Another "Summer Funny"!
 

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Today's Joke


A "COOL" joke to cool you off in this 100 degree weather we are having . . . 

Gina got lost in her car in a snow storm. She remembered what her dad had once told her. "If you ever get stuck in a snow storm, wait for a snow plow and follow it".

Pretty soon a snow plow came by, and she started to follow it. She followed the plow for about forty-five minutes.

Finally the driver of the truck got out and asked her what she was doing.

She explained that her dad had told her if she ever got stuck in the snow, to follow a plow.

The driver nodded and said, "Well, I'm done with WalMart; now you can follow me over to K-Mart."

        LOL!!! 

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Oatmeal Without lifting a Finger!

Want breakfast tomorrow without lifting a finger?  Place 2 sliced apples, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1 tsp cinnamon, pinch salt in the bottom of the crock pot. Pour in 2 cups of oatmeal, 2 cups of milk and 2 cups water. Do NOT stir. Cook overnight for 8 - 9 hours on low. PLEASE SHARE To SAVE this recipe, be sure to click SHARE so it will store on your personal page! www.imfinallyskinny.com
Want breakfast tomorrow without lifting a finger?

Place 1/2-3/4 cup of dried cranberries, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/8-1/4 cup of chopped pecans or walnuts, 1 tsp cinnamon, pinch salt in the bottom of the crock pot.  Pour in 2 cups of oatmeal, 2 cups of milk and 2 cups water.
Do NOT stir.  
Cook overnight for 8 - 9 hours on low.
(Other options: 2 sliced apples, raisins, blueberries, bananas (after cooked), nutmeg, etc. - use your imagination!)
~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~ 
Did you ever hear your mother say, "Eat your oatmeal"? As a kid I remember the bowl of basic plain old oatmeal!!  Today that plain old bowl of oatmeal has lots of added goodies!! Cranberries, blueberries, apples, nuts, cinnamon, nutmeg, and a touch of brown sugar!   Did you know that just one bowl of oatmeal a day can keep the doctor away. Oatmeal also has many other amazing health benefits worth looking into . . .

so next time you hear the "oatmeal" word . . . try a bowl.  You might just find that your childhood taste of oatmeal has changed and you might decide it is really quite "tasty" to your taste buds and also a healthy benefit.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Three Things . . .





Mustard Seed Faith


Matthew 17:20                           

Mustard seed faith says what God says about any given situation.
- Dr. Danny Diaz


How many mountains could we move? Just think about it a little bit . . .

Do you realize how tiny a mustard seed really is??  Well, a mustard seed is 1.88 mm - not very big at all!!  Actually, it is about the size of the tip of a pencil lead!!

Nothing is really impossible with God . . . even with as little faith as a mustard seed!  Do we stop to realize that?  Do we realize what is really available to us at the end of our "faith"?  Faith the size of a mustard seed . . . that really is not very much faith!  A tiny mustard seed (one of the least of all seeds) when sowed in the field and when grown is the greatest among herbs, and becomes a tree. A tree that birds of the air come and lodge in!  (Matthew 13:31-32)

I like a little bit of mustard . . . a little on my hot dog and hamburger - but not too much!  I also like mustard on a bologna sandwich! It is good seasoning for potato salad and deviled eggs and many other dishes.  That little seed is very potent and the taste of mustard can be very overpowering!  It doesn't take much mustard for me to get the full robust flavor! 

Isn't that what God's Word tells us about "faith" . . . it doesn't take much faith to feel and see that robust act of trusting in God. A God that nothing is really impossible for!  It really is not "how much" faith we have . . . it is only that we have faith and it can be as tiny as the little mustard seed.  Maybe it is not so much in "how much" but in "how we use that bit of faith"!  Do we really believe God can answer our toughest prayers?  How about the little prayers I whisper to God though out my day to day routine?  Do I believe that He cares, that He wants the very best for me, that He is just waiting for me to exercise my mustard seed-sized faith in a Sovereign God that "nothing is impossible" or too hard for Him? And that He comes into my life and offers me the peace that passeth all understanding and the assurance that everything will be OK?

My faith in a God that knows all, sees all, hears all, and conquers all obstacles in life has been stretched over this last year.  Especially since discovering I had two brain tumors!! Looking back I realize that I was barely existing for the majority of last year.  I really don't know how I was existing - I was there but I really wasn't there.  People come up to me now and tell me that "I'm Back" - "it's me again"! My faith was ever so small - maybe even smaller than the tiny mustard seed! But God, in His goodness and mercy, looked at me and recognized it was ALL I had in my helpless situation. The brain tumors were growing and pressing against my brain limiting my every action from talking, thinking, doing, etc. I was barely existing . . . but God knew all about it!

My mustard seed-sized faith conquered those brain tumors! My recovery was miraculous - from speechless just 8 months ago and not being able to remember when I was born or even my name or my children's names - to talking and remembering, from stumbling on the piano to again playing it and even playing for the praise team at church every week now, from not being able to write or spell words to once again writing on my blog!! Sometimes I still have to slow down and think and say some words over again in my mind every once in a while but my whole being, my whole thought processes are back! As my family and friends say . . .  "Diana, you're back"!!
It was my "mustard seed faith" and the many, many other "mustard seeds" of faithful people that prayed for my healing and my recovery along the way.  This month marked 8 months since discovering the tumors and my surgery.  It has been a remarkable 8 months in so many ways.  I have exercised my "mustard seed faith" in every area of my life and I have seen what, many times, seemed to be totally impossible . . . but I have seen beyond the "impossible" to the "possible" with the help of God Almighty!  I know first hand that "nothing is impossible" with God and a little "mustard seed faith"!!

Hmmmm . . . just what would happen if we had the faith of a watermelon seek, a cucumber seed, an orange seed, an avocado seed . . . or a peach seed???!!!
 

Here are a few "mustard seed faith builders" . . .

Matthew 17:20 says, "I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.

 

Mark 9:23 says everything is possible for him who believes.

 
Mark 10:27 says that all things are possible for God.

Romans 12:3 says God gives us the measure of faith.

Romans 10:17 says that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.

Mark 11:23-24 a prayer of faith. Now notice in verse 22 that it says "Have faith in God".


Hebrew 11:6 says that without faith it is impossible to please God, because everyone who comes to Him
must believe.

 
2 Cor. 5:7 says that we must live by faith NOT by sight. Seeing can be very deceiving. Keep your eyes on God.

1 John 5:14 says, that we can have confidence, that if we ask anything according to the Word of God then we will receive what we ask.


1 Cor. 13:2 says that faith has to be proceeded by love.

1 Thes. 5:8 says to put faith and love on as a breastplate. Faith and love go hand in hand, and protect and shield your heart.
 

Heb. 12:2 says Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith.

So, take a look at your tiny mustard seed and discover the faith within you.  Exercise that faith and look at the power of God at work in your heart and life and go ahead . . . move those mountains that are standing, tall and majestic, in front of you today and remember - "NOTHING" is impossible with God!      



Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Quotes to Live By . . .



Goals: “There’s no telling what you can do when you get inspired by them. There’s no telling what you can do when you believe in them. There’s no telling what will happen when you act upon them!”   -Jim Rohn

“Do more than belong: participate. Do more than care:  help. Do more than believe: practice. Do more than be fair:  be kind. Do more than forgive: forget. Do more than dream:  work.  -William Arthur Ward

"It's never too late to live . . . Happily Ever After!" -Unknown

"An arrow can only be shot by pulling it backward.  So when life is dragging you back with difficulties, it means that it's going to launch you into something great!  So just focus and keep aiming!!" - Unknown

Thoughts lead on to purposes; purposes go forth in action; actions form habits; habits decide character; and character fixes our destiny.”  -Tyron Edwards

“You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late.”  -Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Live today!  Not yesterday.  Not tomorrow.  Just today!!  Inhabit your moments.  Don’t rent them out to tomorrow."  -Jerry Spinelli

“Set out each day believing in your dreams. Know without a doubt that you were made for amazing things.”  -Josh Hinds

"Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individuals, you have an obligation to be one."  -Eleanor Roosevelt

"You cannot raise a man up by calling him down."  -William Baeteker

 “Where hope grows, miracles blossom.”  -Elna Rae