Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Stinky Dogs But A Good God!

Hey there!

I am sitting here today at my computer doing some work. I should be laid up on the couch or the bed, but I'm not I'm sitting at the computer.

Yesterday I was to have my last round of back shots. They are painful and the next day I am usually in pretty bad shape...Not today!

Because I had not had any pain in the last three days the doctor canceled my shots!
My husband was praying that would happen. He even asked me before I went if I was going to ask the doctor if I needed that last round. I didn't ask the doctor..he asked me about my pain...then he asked me if I needed the other shots! I started laughing. I told him that was a hard question to answer. He then did an examination and determined that I was pain free!
He did stipulate that if at any time I started hurting again I could have that third shot.

I wont need it!

God answered my husband's prayers! Mine Too!

About the stinky dogs...we have a beautiful black mutt named KeeKee Bear. We are dog sitting my parents dog a white and tan shiatsu (?) while they are gone on a senior adult convention. I just let them in from outside and they both are snuggled at my feet. Boy howdy! They stink! Like to took my breath away! But I can't turn them away, when they want to sit at my feet and just be near me.

I wonder if I sometimes stink to Jesus. I'm sure that my sins don't smell to good. I wonder if I stink just by being around others who are sin stinking? All I know is that Because I belong to Jesus His blood has made me clean...I can sit at His feet and just be near Him. Better yet I think I'll close so I can crawl up in His lap right now.

See ya later,
Love Pamela

Monday, September 29, 2008

Tagged Again!

Hey Y'all,

Lynn over at http://lynpolksblog@blogspot.com has tagged me. Yay! I like playing tag! Go visit Lynn. She has a heart for God and I love visiting her. She is real. She is also real funny. I read her and I see myself. But most of all she loves Jesus!

So here are seven new random things about me:

1) I like to cook. I like making up recipes too. Which makes my husband sad. Not because he don't like my cooking but because he knows I probably wont remember how to make it again!

2) I once was called up on stage by a country singer named Tom T. Hall. For those of you old enough to remember he wrote and sang the song "I Love..." I was nine years old and he called me up at the end of his concert and gave me the harmonica he had been playing all night. A moment I will never forget!

3) I can speak in front of any size crowd...no fear. However if you ask me to sing...My throat closes in fear and only small squeaks come out! Weird huh?

4) I come from a big extended family. I am # 20 of 22 grandchildren. By the time I was in high school there were over 80 of us that gathered at my granny's for Christmas.

5) I love Christmas! It is my favorite time of year! Oh...don't tell anyone but I still believe in Santa's Cause. Go back and read that again...did you catch it?

6) Plants can not survive around me. I have killed (N0, not on purpose) every plant that I have ever tried to grow, including one of those cactus that are attached to a shell. You just set them in your bathroom and they grow. You don't have to feed them or water them. Mine lived only 2 months. :(

7) I am deathly afraid of chickens! Live ones! I'll eat them! But I can not get close to them if they are alive. I was attacked by a large rooster when I was a young teen and the thing cut me up pretty bad before my mom knocked it off of me with a mop. My dad put it up in a tiny pin to let it fatten up and I got to decide how it should be cooked....can you say chicken salad?

So who am I tagging?


Please play. There are just too many of you I want to list.

I love you guys!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Ta Da!

What do you think?

A dear friend helped me get a new look!

A whole new make-over!

Thanks Amy!!!

Why the change?

First impressions mean a lot! We all make judgements based on our first impressions. Now, God judges solely on the heart. Even though I want to be like him and I am made in His image...last time I checked...I ain't Him.

I want to be that way. I try to take captive the thoughts from my first impressions and try to get to know people on their content rather than appearance. However, sometimes those first impressions are hard to shake.

So...I wanted to update your impression of me.

Does this look more like me? Do you know? :)

There may be more changes a brewing as I learn more and Amy teaches me more.

One thing is for sure......I would not be me without my hot pink shoes!

Let me know what you think!

Love Pamela

Switcheroo Day

Hey Friends,
I would love to visit all of those holidays!
Here's mine.

Switcheroo Day!
It would be held the 3rd Saturday in August (that way it would fall on my birthday once in a while).
Everyone would be required to trade places with someone else for a day.
Other switcheroos would be that you would have to eat supper items for breakfast
Desserts for lunch and for supper you would have breakfast foods.
You would wear your clothes either inside out or backward. Go places you have never been and take different routes to get places.
This holiday would have a twofold purpose...to be able to understand how others feel as you walk a day in their shoes, and to go crazy and have fun!

Who would I want to switch places with on Switcheroo day?
My husband of course!

Love you

Friday, September 26, 2008

Friday's Fun Question

Hi Ladies,
Here is another fun question.

If you were put in charge of inventing a new holiday, what would it be?

What or why would we celebrate?
Choose a date.
Describe what type of activities would be a part of the celebration.
Most important...What would we eat?

Have fun and I'll give you mine on Sunday. (Yes, I have already answered this question myself.)

BTW...My last round of back shots is this coming Monday. Keep praying.


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

God's Talking but am I listening?

Hi Friends,
I am posting today in response to a question Edie posed last Friday over at http://richgifts.blogspot.com (wonderful blog go see her...you'll love her like I do.)

Her question was about how we hear God. I have heard God. Not His audible voice...but I know His voice when He speaks to my spirit.

Like Chatty Kelly at http://chattykelly.blogspot.com (another good one...I love her writings and insights!) I believe the voice of God can never contradict the Word of God! So that is a litmus test for me...does this sound like the God I know from Scripture?

Henry Blackaby in his study Experiencing God (A must do Bible study!) says there are four ways God will reveal His will to us.

Through Prayer
Through Scripture
Through The church body
Through circumstances

When Experiencing God first came out, I got to spend time with Henry Blackaby and his family. A friend of mine from seminary new his family and introduced us. In fact, if you have been through the study and saw the video... then you saw me several times.
Henry was able to really clarify this for me one night as a group of us sat with him asking questions.

God is always talking to His children. We sometimes do not understand, or we miss what He is saying. He uses the above four ways in most circumstances. The first two are the most reliable when discerning God's direction. The last two, then are the least reliable. We can be fooled by the church. We have all experienced well meaning church people who have gone in a wrong direction, believing they were acting according to God. Saul was that way. Long before Saul met Jesus, he loved and served God. In fact, his persecution of the followers of Jesus came about from His devotion to what he believed was right from God. Church people can be lead away by misplaced devotion.

Circumstances can tell us God's will and direction. God has often used circumstances in my life to direct my path But this too can be unreliable if not tested against the other three.

As I was getting ready to graduate from seminary, I knew that God wanted me to continue my part-time ministry at the church I served. I also knew that I would need other housing, because I would no longer be eligible for seminary housing. As I was praying about this one afternoon my phone rang. It was one of the secretaries at the church where I worked. She asked me what my plans were after graduation. She then offered me a place to stay with her elderly aunt who needed someone to be there at night, and who could help her a little around the house. I could live there free by looking after her aunt. I said yes! I just knew this was my direct answer to prayer. However it was all circumstantial. It turned out to be one of the biggest regrets of my life! It was a nightmare for all of us. The aunt needed much more care than just someone to check in on her. She was paranoid and unstable. God used it to reveal to her family that she needed greater care, but the harm it caused with everyone involved could have been avoided if I had sought God further and not jumped at circumstances.

Most of the times I have heard God speak to me it has been through scripture. Occasionally He will speak in a soft humorous voice, so out of the blue from my own thoughts, that I know it is my Father. And sometimes it is firm and strong and to be obeyed immediately. Like this morning when my husband and I were having a small discussion. The right fighter in me wanted to correct something he said. It really was just a matter of a wrong noun, and not relevant to the discussion at hand. As I started to correct him...I heard strongly..."Quiet Pamela! Do you want to be right or have a right relationship? This is the time to be quiet my daughter. No! Do Not Speak!"
I obeyed and the discussion was soon resolved and blissful harmony restored. God gave me a wonderful husband! My wanting to be right would have hurt him and cut off the ground we had made. It was hard! I like being right.....but I love my husband more than I ever want to be right....And I LOVE MY GOD MORE THAN THAT!!!!

One of my favorite psalms is Psalm 19: 1-3
"The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork. Day unto day utters speech, and night unto night reveals knowledge. There is no speech nor language where their voice is not heard."

He is talking...read His Word, pray and seek His face, be with His people, look outside today....He's got something to tell you! Are you listening?


Saturday, September 20, 2008

My Stamp

Hi Ladies,
Thanks so much for the prayers. My back is getting better and someone shared with me at school the other day how to survive the shots-recovery better. Overall the shots have lessened the pain and my mobility has improved tremendously. So I believe after this next round (and recovery of the cure itself), I'll be back to normal...maybe even better.

I loved all of your answers to my stamp question. It is amazing reading the different characters and why they mean so much to you. I agree with each one! We have a wondrous biblical history and no hero ever drawn or imagined could compare to the ones God designed.

My choice though would be Elijah. His very name means "YAHWEH is my God." His main objective as a prophet was to convict Israel to faith that YAHWEH alone is God. He was that voice that cried for belief in the One True God. He faced over 450 false prophets and seemed fearless and with such trust in God that it amazes me every time I read it. I love his sense of humor too in the face of such opposition. "Shout louder! Surely he is a god! Perhaps he is deep in thought, or busy, or traveling. Maybe he is sleeping and must be awakened." I don't know if I would have ridiculed all those prophets that way but Elijah did! Elijah also had the faith to show everyone that only the One True God YAHWEH could light a fire after it had been soaked in water the way that alter was soaked. The fire of God even licked the water dry! What courage and faith. He didn't always show that kind of courage. He got scared and faltered just like me. But that too is why He should be on my stamp. To him God was everything and could do anything!
I shrink at persecution sometimes. I have never been tortured or had my life threatened like Elijah.

My persecutions are more of the insult kind. Those snide remarks by unbelievers or even believers who don't understand my faith or relationship with God. I have recently come to live by this question by Lisa Whittle..."Am I willing to be disliked by others in order to be real before God?" So now when I see the roll of the eyes as I talk about Jesus from my extended family...or the "Miss Goody-Two-Shoes" remark...or even the "Why don't you say the blessing for us you do it so well." (with a sneer and a wink) I smile and say let me be bold like Elijah. Let everyone know that YAHWEH is my GOD!

I love you my sisters!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Fun Question!

Hey Friends,
The last few days have been stressful and rough. I am once again asking for your prayers concerning my back. I had my second round of shots Monday afternoon. It seems I will be needing a third round on the 29th. Ladies, these shots are painful and for a couple days afterward I am hurting bad. I can't sit more than 15 to 30 minutes a day the first few days. It takes about 4 full days before the medicine to kicks in, and relief comes. I believe the shots are helping overall, because after I recover from the shots, my pain is not as bad and I can walk better.

So that is why I have not been stopping by or posting as much lately. It has also put me behind on my writing deadlines. My editor at LifeWay is a jewel and a close friend whom I love dearly. She is understanding and has extended my deadline. Pray for me as I try to finish quickly and for her, as this pushes her work back some too.

School is another little ocean wave that keeps changing. I will be glad when I have a final number of students. Right now it is still in fluctuation. The school is wonderful and bending over backwards to help all they can and I praise God for them everyday.

Our church situation is as follows: Mike is still doing supply/interim work for this new church start. They are talking with a pastor candidate and have voted to offer him the position. It is now up to him and God as to wither He will accept or not. If He does, we will be there until he can transition here. If he does not, then we will continue until God opens a different door. We were in this same spot a few weeks ago, but that is what it is like when you are doing interim work.

I started out with just a little news but ended up with a long post....sorry.

So.... with out further ado.... I have a fun question for you!

Imagine that the United States Postal Service has asked you to pick a Biblical Hero (Other than Jesus...we would all choose Him, I'm sure) to be commemorated on a new stamp. Whom would you choose and why?

I'll share mine this weekend. I want to hear yours first.

Thanks for praying for me.
I love you all so dearly!

Pamela R.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Bump! Bump! Bump!

Hey Ladies,
Do you remember the dance the "Bump?" How about riding in bumper cars at the fair? Have you ever been in a bump up? Bumped someone out of place? Bumped into someone lately? Have you ever bumped heads with someone?

Bump! Bump! Bump!

I'm going to intentionally bump someone today. In fact we all will bump people today unless we are secluded hermits. We bump everyone we meet one way or another. Every encounter is a bump for us.

C.S. Lewis says, "It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you can talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or the other of these destinations...There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations---these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit---immortal horrors or everlasting splendors."

Now, let me tell you C.S. Lewis is hard for me to understand sometimes. His writing is often too deep for my country girl's brain.

But this quote haunts me. Here's my take on what he is saying:

We need to understand that everyone we encounter (Bump into) is on a journey to eternity. We are everlasting creatures. We are either on the road to being an everlasting being, made to look like Jesus and His glory in Heaven, or like the repulsive horror of Satan in hell. There is no other choice. We will be spending eternity one place or the other. With that being the case, our encounters become more important. Because we are either going to bump someone toward Jesus or bump them toward Hell. I don't know about you but I want to bump them toward Jesus!

I have looked at my daily life in a different way. I have told you before that I enjoy telling drivers what to do, and not always in a calm way. I think that's one reason they asked me to do pick-up duty at school. :) Since meditating on this idea of bumping people toward heaven or hell, I have tried to change my actions. Instead of making faces at, or giving other drivers a good talking too, I now try (Key word "try" cause I'm still learning) to pray for them. My encounters at school have more importance, as does my encounters at the post office, the grocery store, the bank, the gas station (this one is hard right now with gas prices so high), the doctors office (spending a lot of painful time there), the person who served me my coffee at Dunken Doughnuts this morning, and anyone I walk by or bump into. They are all on their way to looking like Jesus or looking like the enemy for eternity. My actions will push them closer to one or the other.

Time is running out! Jesus may come in our lifetime, but even if He doesn't come until after we are long gone, we are not promised tomorrow. Today, you will affect someone! Today, you will either push someone toward God or the enemy, unless you sit at home and don't talk to another soul. Even then, you don't know who may be watching your house wondering if you ever come out. Bump them toward Jesus!

Remember you are being bumped too. I hope that by reading this I have bumped you toward Jesus. You have bumped me toward Him many times and I love you for that! It's time we make it an agenda---a priority.

Bump! Bump! Bump!

Bumping for Jesus!

Love ya
Pamela R.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

I Want To Go!

I have a confession to make...

Not many people know this...(They will now)

I am a big Country music fan! It's true! I love the sound of a fiddle, Steele guitar, banjo, harmonica, and the acoustic guitar. I love the twang that is moaned in some of the words. I love to two step and cotton-eyed-Joe on a wooden dance floor.

It's what I grew up on. My father had a country band and even had a country music television show on our local ETV channel for a couple years. It ran all over NC,SC and parts of GA.

Now, I don't like all the lyrics! I keep switching from our country station to our Christian station often because I wont listen to any nasty songs!

I am also not a fan of certain singers because their music consistently proves to be offensive.

With all that straight let me tell you what happened today.

I was listening to our country station when the announcer announced a new song called, "Everybody Wants To Go To Heaven" by Kenny Chesne (Not a fan so don't know correct spelling.) The title intrigued me. Was this boy getting right with God?

The song started out about his trip to church Sunday Morning and the preacher asking him, "Boy, don't you want to go to heaven?" The answer came as of course I do but I don't want to go right now. It continued with "Everybody wants to go to Heaven, but nobody wants to go right now." I don't know much about the rest of the song because I was raising my hands in praise and shouting, "I do! I want to go right now! I want to see Jesus!"

Can I get a witness? Am I the only one who wants to go now? I'm not depressed or morbid. I don't want to die. I do want to go to heaven to see Jesus! And once I get there you can bet I'm gonna want to stay!

Obviously, Kenny has no clue or He would want to go now too! (Sorry Kenny if you Google this and happen to read it....but it is the truth...You really need Jesus, son!)

I want to see Him. I want to touch Him. I want to...

Sit at rest in my Lord's arms and dance upon his feet.
To look into those loving eyes and listen to His heart beat.
To trust my Jesus with all I have and never doubt or fear.
To lean on Him, sing His praise and hold His face so near.
To run, skip, walk and climb...
while safe in His arms of love sublime and...
Leaving all my regrets and hurts behind.

I want that! I want that now! Don't You? Don't you yearn for heaven?

Randy Alcorn in his book "Heaven," says we shouldn't be surprised when we feel homesick for Heaven. It is our home! (my paraphrase)

That is the faith for which I long
The faith that is my soul's song.

Until my life on this earth ends...
and my eternity looking into His face begins.
I'll feed on His Word and sit at His feet.
I'll pray and seek for our hearts to meet...
playing together that faithful beat.
That beat of unity and perfect love...
that can only come from my Jehovah Love.

So all you country fans out there...and all other types of music too.

I know where I'm going. Don't you want to come too? ( Another Country song)

Looking forward to going home!

Love y'all....... hard!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Magnifying Jesus

How big is your God?

This is a question that has been running through my head for over a week.

I know He is the God who speaks and worlds come into being.
I know He can calm the sea.
Heal the sick
Give the blind sight
Stop time
Move mountains
Turn water to blood
Split seas
Send manna from Heaven
Raise the dead
Die for my sins
Conquer death
Calm my troubled heart.
Breath life

These are all big things that my God can do. I believe because I have read about them, and heard about them, and even experienced His might first hand.

But still how big is my God?

Big enough to know and name every hair on my head. Big enough to handle my complaints and not feel offended, big enough to laugh at the jokes I told (OK, still tell Him) even though He knows the punch lines. (I think He laughs with me anyway!) Big enough to care about every detail of my life. Big enough to put every thing I would ever be into a single cell that holds my DNA. Big enough to wipe every tear. Big enough to to provide just enough of everything I need even before I know I need it.

But most of all....What would be the hardest thing I believe He could do....Are you ready?He...loves...me! NOW THAT IS BIG!

And as my daughter is so fond of saying....And guess what?
He loves you too!

Thanks for praying the conference went great! Much more than I expected...see He is big!
I am leaving this Thursday to do another one is South GA. I am having another round of shots next Monday. I still can't sit for very long yet. God is big enough to help me sit longer too.

I love you all!
Pamela R.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

My Own 23rd Psalm

Hey Ladies,
Thank you so much for your prayers for my back. The shots are starting to work. The doctor said it would take 3-4 days for the medicine to really kick in and help. When I got up this morning I discovered after about 4-5 steps that I wasn't shuffling or limping. My right leg was not hurting as it had for every morning for several years! I did not connect my morning stiffness and leg pain to my back but praise God, He did!

I am leaving today to go to Ga to do a conference. It will be a 4-5 hour drive. Please pray that I will be able to ride well. My husband is going with me to do the driving and carry stuff. Isn't he wonderful? I am blessed to have a husband who believes as strongly in my ministry as he does his own!

I enjoyed your comments on who God is to you. It is so much better to focus on Him. Last year I did a Bible study by T.W. Hunt on prayer. One of the assignments was to write our own 23rd psalm. Not as scripture. God's Word is true and Holy. But to let us like the psalmist think of God in a different way. I want to share mine with you.

My Own 23rd Psalm
The Lord is my Companion, I shall not lack fellowship
He leads me by the hand into intimacy with Him and His creation.
He restores all my relationships.
He leads me into unconditional love and glorious service for His own namesake
Although I walk in the valley of a selfish generation, I will not stop loving and caring for His children.
I will fear no evil for You, oh Lord, are my strength and my shield.
Your Spirit and Your Word infuse me
You prepare a banquet for me in the presence of those who would hurt me.
You anoint my soul with grace and forgiveness.
My heart overflows
Surely mercy will surround me all the days of my life
and I shall joyfully abide in your arms forever!
What is your 23rd psalm?
I love you my precious sisters!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

He Is

Several Years ago there was a song out called "He Is" by Aaron & Geoffrey.
It took the books of the Bible and pulled out who Jesus was in each one. A powerful song that I still play from time to time.
I was thinking about that song this morning. I am having shots put in my hips this morning to try to get rid of my back pain. I am a little nervous about it because I will not be able to drive myself home. This puts me into a "Helpless" situation and you all know how much I hate that!
Anyway, I asked myself, "Who is He to me today?"

He is...
My Healer
My Companion
My Savior
My Mighty One
My Hope
My Voice
My Eternal Father
My Joy
My Peace
My Friend,
My Holy God
My Awesome Creator
My God Who spits Stars
My Life
My Everything
My Existence
The One Who Goes Before Me
The One Who Surrounds Me
The One Who has my back
The One Who Conquered Death for Me
The One Who makes me laugh
The One who shelters me
The One Who KNOWS ME
The One and Only God

He is...He is... He is!

Love to all
Pamela R.