First, thanks to all you who have let me know you could not comment on my post. In my limited knowledge I tried to fix that issue only to lose all comments. Give me a new song to learn and I can follow any instruction you give me, I can follow a recipe for cooking, read a map, but this issue is so confusing to me. Most of the terminology is like a foreign language to me. SOOOOOO.
I must get some help to undo whatever I did to lose the comments. Be patience with me, don't drop me if it takes a while. Check back once in a while to see if it's fixed. This too will come to pass.
Oh, please try to comment on this post so I know who can.
Monday, January 14, 2019
Going Deeper with God
"Deep was my word for last year, 2018. Thinking God would give me another word for this year I have waited and waited. Nothing pops into my mind, so I am going for another year with, "deep".
Just today I read this article by Archbishop Foley Beach, that cemented my decision.
Imagine for a moment that you are on a hike one Saturday afternoon . . .You are hiking in a meadow and you begin to walk through a grove of trees. As you begin to clear the trees, you suddenly notice that right there, in front of you, is a very large and beautiful lake. The lake is so large that you cannot see the shore on the other side.
Saturday, December 29, 2018
Today our daughter and family flew back to Mn. I took down all my Christmas decorations , ate some left over for lunch, watched a little TV.
My husband is on the road with our oldest grandson helping him drive his jeep he bought in California back to Mn. I have stayed busy on purpose because I always go through a little depression after my family leaves.
But today God brought this song back up again to me. In fact there was plans for another lady and I to sing it after the Christmas service last year but I got sick. Since I had family here I did not volunteer to do it this year.
Our pastor has been preaching such great messages about the second coming of the Lord which always stirs my heart to witness. But with the Christmas season on us, buying presents, food and going to parties kept my mind busy and off of the lost.
I did invite a young women who I have been working with to our Christmas service but she had to work.
Was not sure what this post was going to be about, just felt compelled to listen to the song again. I firmly believe this is the message God wants us to think about before, during and after Christmas.
We have family right now in Miramar on a mission trip. They have been going for about the last five Christmas. Right now they are telling the gospel to the people there.
RIGHT NOW, someone is prayerfully getting saved because someone went.
Our Miramar is all around us, where ever God has planted us. We just need, no, I need to get out there and tell someone about the little baby in a manager, the son of God, how He grew up, died on a cross for my sin, rose again and is now sitting at the right hand of the Father and someday He will come take me where He is.
I don't know what God is speaking to your heart in these after Christmas days but I am personally hearing in my spirit, GO TELL, loud and clear.
Saturday, December 8, 2018
“All the Christmas presents in the world are worth nothing without the presence of Christ." -David Jeremiah
I love this quote for it reminds me of the Christmas's in my life where I found myself disappointed.
As a child my Dad was always drunk on every Christmas's which meant we kids and my Mom lived in fear of a beating, which usually came. Had it not been for a couple of relatives and the American Legion Christmas party along with a few churches who did things for low income kids we would have had no Christmas.
This disappointment I took into my adulthood so it was always a struggle for me to get excited over the traditions of Christmas.
We were married 12 years without children which also makes for disappointment. I mean, isn't that suppose to be the greatest joy, watching your children open their presents. Then came the food that took a couple of days to prepare, eaten in 20 minutes. And It never failed that one of the children's toys broke that very day, disappointment again.
Before you get sad for me I want you to know I do not look back in sadness at past disappointments. I believe they are the stepping stones I needed to instill a hunger for something besides the earthly to fill that disappointment hole inside of me.
Disappointments come to everyone, believers and non believers alike. In this world you will have trouble, it's a given.
At age 35 I became a believer in the sweet gospel and from that point on my perspective of Christmas change. We still give gifts, cook tons of good food, enjoy what ever family that comes around on Christmas but behind all that does dim in light of the love of God for us as the Christmas story is read.
My Grandma and Grandpa were believers so I know at some point in my life I heard that Christmas story read but when a heart is living in disappointment it's hard for truth to get through. Disappointment saddens us and even can makes us so angry we make others pay for our past and present disappointments. Disappointment focus is all about me, what I did not have, what I did not get, what I think I deserve. When we focus we sit ourselves up for disappointments.
One way to get over personal disappointment is to get involved in others lives. You find out rich or poor, everyone has disappointment. Even though my childhood years were rough I have met many who have had it worst and still having it worst than I did. My past does not own me, God owns my past, He knew how often I would be disappointed and He knew if I turned them over to Him He would make something beautiful with them.
I can get excited over Christmas now, and I don' t mind not having a lot of money to buy everything I want to buy for my Grandchildren. God has never let me experiences having too much money, not sure I could handle that. But I can handle a little money and the challenge in trusting Him to give me ideas for fun gifts. This year I bought everyone, from our 3 year old grandson to the oldest a back scratcher for one dollar apiece. I am going to put their names on them. You might think I am cheap and do not have enough money for more then a dollar gift, trust me I do. Here is the fun part. Everyone uses my back scratcher and when they do, they will say, I need to get one of these. My grandson gave me one a couple years ago. What better gift to give then something they need. And as we sit scratching our backs around the tree, the sweet beautiful Christmas story will be read....the cheapest and richest gift blessing us at the same time.
Tuesday, October 30, 2018
They said it would never last when we got married at 17 on Oct. 20th, 54 years ago. Guess we showed them, whoever them is.
A few weeks ago we were sitting on
a bench outside a Mexican restaurant waiting for our friend to come out. A couple approached us and ask us how long had we been married.? We said, 54 years. They went on to ask, how have you stayed married so long? I (Betty) answered, "being
committed to our marriage". Ace replied, "being willing to forgive". Had that been just head words and not heart words I am pretty sure our marriage would not
have lasted because there were certainly some rough years.
In talking to this couple we found out they were only married a year and already struggling.
Lets see, our first year Ace was gone a lot due to his job, he worked on a rig in the oil field so I was alone most of the time. We moved twice, I had two miscarriages. The next 12 years that followed were some of our worst, full of insecurity, loneliness, changing jobs, moving to another state, more miscarriages, adultery, several separation, drinking, searching for answers, retaliation, more moves, lots of tears, lots of hurt.
During that time, at 26 Ace had a massive heart attack. After a month in the hospital the doctors told him to take a medical retirement from his job, he should not lift over 20 pounds, or push a lawn mower. The heart attack had left a fourth of his heart useless. At that time, 1973, they were experimented with bypass surgery and after much discussion they decided to try it on Ace, it worked and he went back to work a few months later. That bypass along with five stints keep his heart working.
This major event was the catalyst that turned our lives around for he was a believer since age 13 but did not grow in his knowledge of God. While in the hospital a women stopped by from a church and ask him, sir what can I do for you? He replied, I just need to get right with God. She said, I'll send someone to talk to you, no one came. But, from that point on we started the process of cleaning our lives up.
Not only did Ace have a scar on his heart from the attack there were emotional wounds from the past that God wanted him to deal with.
Having our first child after all those years was the next catalyst for a life change. I begin to read the bible, searching for how to fill that hole up in my heart that the American dream did not fill up. God was dealing with His prodigal son at the same time.
In 1980 due to a diligent church pursuing us I got saved and Ace rededicated his life to the Lord. For the first time he knew and understood the scripture I John 1:9. From that point on it was perfect...you do know I just lied there. Of course it was not perfect, but for the first time things begin to have meaning , our past, our future, our present, our failures, our mistakes, our sin even. Seeing all through the eyes of God perspective gave peace, contentment and joy but did not stop the struggles. I am totally convinced without pain one cannot grow, mature, or for that matter cannot live out the truth of the Bible with conviction and boldness. Rick Warren says: "We are products of our past, but we don't have to be prisoners of it. " God wanted us to walk in freedom despite our past.
God was going to test that truth. In our 40's we were challenged to go into overseas mission with New Tribes Mission. Huge step of faith, one we have never ever regretted.
Several years into our mission life one of those past mistakes came crashing in on us. God had impressed upon Ace heart years before someday he would have to deal with it.
From those 12 bad years of our marriage came an email from a young man who was looking for his father. He ask if Ace would be willing to do a DNA test. So sitting in Papua New Guinea, half away around world we made one of those profound decisions that changed our lives again.
Ace was totally honest with me and I was crushed but not surprised. We both felt strongly that the request for Ace to take a DNA test was the only way to help this man know truth. I found myself sitting up at night crying over stupid thoughts put there by the enemy of my soul. Ace was in his own torment of guilt which knows no time limit. 40 years had passed since those bad years.
There are tons of details, but the most important thing I need to share is: yes, Ace is the father of a son born from another women. Knowing that set off a series of events, the first being bringing our two children together and sharing this with them, which was not easy since we lived on the other side of the world but we knew it was important to be face to face with them instead of telling this by email. It was a precious time because through this we became more real, especially to our son. By the time they were born we were walking with the Lord so they never knew us as worldly parents. Our past did not diminish their love for us one tiny bit.
And, during all this, Ace says he never felt the love of God as strongly as he did then.
We have formed a deep relationship with Ace son and family who are believers. Everyone in our family has met him and his family. It would take writing a whole book to put all the details of the hand of God in this. God has used this in our lives, and in others in the area of forgiveness. Remember He waste nothing.
As I read back through what I have written I want to add and add lessons we learned through our 54 years. One that rises to the top is this, yes, couples need to be committed to each other. Yes, couples need to forgive each other, but first individually they must at all cost be committed to Him, the keeper of their soul, and forgive themselves. We get disappointed in each other, in ourselves, in the world but we have no reason to be disappointed in Him. I am reading a book titled, A Quest For More by Paul Tripp....Living for something bigger than you. That's it!!!! That is where we must come to every day, living for something bigger than ourselves, then and only then can our messy lives impact others and bring glory to God.
I have Ace permission to write this post. That part of our married life no longer holds us captive. We set it free for God to be used as He pleases, which is why I decided to write a little about it. God prompts us often to tell some of our story in order to help someone trapped in their past. The truth sets us free.
Committed to each other and forgiving each other can help in the worst times which will make for some good times to remember. Happy Anniversary to us...
Monday, August 13, 2018
|Gina and family|
Today I am experiencing pure joy because at last the idea took on shape as I read my friend Gina post.
I met Gina and family in 1991 in Bolivia, South America. We served with her family at the New Tribes boarding school as dorm parents. She and my daughter hit it off right away as they lived life in the high school girls dorm. These are the things I remember about her.
A loyal friend...
One who studies people...
Never drew attention to herself...
A great writer ...
Gina graduated the same year our Tara did, came back to the states, went to nursing school.
She and her husband, now have four children, a full plate. But life happens and it draws Gina into writing not only about past life but the today. Her father died about six months ago and her raw, honest, deep pondering thoughts made their way from her heart to her blog. I have read several books and blogs on grief but this women words have caused me to think outside myself about dying and death.
It's been two years this past April since my Mother died and the grief has taken on different roles. So much of Gina's insight has put words to my heart feelings. In her July 26 post titled, Slow and Steady she made a statement, only 6 words about grieving that lit up my heart.
God is not in a hurry.....
He also is not afraid of disappointing us.
When I feel disappointed by God, it’s because at that moment there’s something I’m longing for more than him, whether it be healing, employment, a child, a wife. As good as healing, employment, children, and marriage might be, none of them will come close to satisfying me as much as God himself.
Psalm 34:10, “The young lions suffer want and hunger; but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.”
Wait a minute God, what is the "good thing". It does not feel good to lose a love one. Paul helps us have the proper view of what that good thing is in Philippians 3:8 , I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.
Knowing Him is the greater good, not just knowing about Him but actually knowing Him. He is the only all-satisfying good, the greater good. Those we have loss are not coming back to us but here is the good in our loss. If we know Christ we will see them again but even deeper than that we will see Him. Some cannot get past losing someone, they become stunted in their growth, sometimes become a recluse, their life defined by their loss instead of being defined by Him.
Gina called it right, God does not get in a hurry. He could have created everything in one day but He took seven, I mean He is God, not bound by time or pressure to hurry by anyone.
Someone ask me the other day about how long has it taken me to grieve my mother. Oh, I said, I am still there. Just recently I found some pictures of my mother with our daughter lying beside her grandma, just a few days before she died. I had not seen them…it stunned me, literally, she looked like she was dead yet I know she was alive then. I transferred them to my phone so I could study them, that did not work. It caused such mixed emotions in me. I don’t remember her looking so bad. Then I look at the picture of her in her light blue coffin, in her red plaid blouse that she loved so much and she looks alive, well sort of, but not like death. They puffed her face up, put make up on her, combed her hair, put soft lights on her, she looked pretty but those nine days before she died, she looked dead. But here is the greater good, I will someday see my Mom again and it will not be earthly lights that will transform her face but the light of Jesus. No more sickness, no more pain will cloud her face, just the glow of His love for her.
Sunday, July 22, 2018
A few years ago we met up with this couple, Mark and Lauren Duc and son Leo. As you can tell by the below picture they have added a sweet little girl, Talia.
We listened to their story of how God moved on their heart to become foreign missionary also heard concern about their son, Leo health issues.
God was working to relieve their concerns. Indonesea has some great doctors and hospitals. Truthfully, they were putting their trust in the Lord for all their lives
It's never easy leaving family, friends, especially
taking a grand baby with health issues to live overseas but by the grace of God Duc's soon found themselves learning a new language, making friends in another culture.
On this side of the big pond as we call the ocean
were some Grandparents needing a grandchild
touch. There is nothing any sweeter then to see
family step off that plane after countless hours
of flying and waiting in foreign airports.
I know you will enjoy the smiles and tears of this Grandma as she and Grandpa see where those precious grand children live everyday. Their understanding will become richer as they watch God work through their children and grand children. Ace and I have been a part of encouraging several parents and grand parents to take a risk and go visit their grown children and grandchildren and see them live a life in Christ outside their comfort zone. They say our eyes affect our hearts, I think you will be able to hear and see that on the face of these grandparent. Enjoy.
If you get a chance, go visit a missionary in the country they serve in. It does not have to be your children, could be a friend living in a foreign country, a missionary from your church. Maybe you can't go due to time, health but maybe you can help pay a parent or Grandpa and Grandma way to go see their family. There is nothing , absolutely nothing like seeing them get off the plane and receive the best hugs in the world. Walking in their world leaves the message that you care beyond yourself about your family or friend.
When James Calvert went out as a missionary to the cannibals of the Fiji Islands, the ship captain tried to turn him back, saying, “You will lose your life and the lives of those with you if you go among such savages”. To that, Calvert replied, “We died before we came, he said.
I have permission to share this post from the Duc's.