Monday, October 20, 2014

Fifty years and counting.

First thing I think as I look at the pictures to the right is, where did all those years go to? Seem that is a common thought for people our age especially after 50 years of marriage.

On  Oct. 20th  Ace and I  at 17  joined our lives together.  Did we have any idea how hard being married was going to be?  Any idea of the countless sacrifices we would make to struggle through some hard years, (notice I put an 's on the end of year)?   Without Christ in our life for the first 15 years it is nothing short of a miracle we stayed together.  Young love wears off after a few trials. 
In 1980 we took another step of faith and joined our life to Christ and life begin to take on meaning beyond just living the American dream.   Were the hard times gone? Of course not, in this life you shall have tribulations Christ said but with His help and His love motivating us we begin to learn how to over come time and time again.  

Endurance is the word that comes to mind as I look back at 50 years.  We have endured each others petty and not so petty frailties and stayed the course.  With both of us having a common goal of being transform into the image of Christ those struggles God used  to show us our sin and help us repent.   Forgiving one another became a way of life.  After 50 years we still have to forgive each other, which I am sure we will be doing till God takes us home. 

God took our broken lives and begin to use us in ways we could never imagine.   He has not  wasted a thing in our lives and only He can pick up the broken pieces and turn them into something that will glorify Him. 

Do we have any regrets, of course, getting married at 17 is not a wise choice but here we stand on this side of 50 years together.  Now, we know there is not another 50 years ahead for us... lets see, that would make us 115, hummm,  not gonna happen unless God preforms another miracle.  The few years we do have left we want to be used till we are empty so He can fill us up again.  

Funny...this morning as we were packing up the car to head out on our anniversary/ ministry trip my husband said, we did not have this much stuff when we got married and moved into our first apartment.  Amazing the baggage we have accumulated in the past 50 years, the things we think we need to even take a weeks trip.  Back then, there were no computers or bags, no golf clubs, no pill  boxes, I don't  even remembering having a cooler,  nothing by dreams and zeal that says, we can conquer anything. We know now, we cannot conquer anything without Him and He has given us wisdom on what to take as we travel.  One thing for sure traveling is a whole lot easier with a Wal-mart in most towns. 

It's been a wild 50 years of life and we have lived it fully and find ourselves thankful for all those 50 years contain, yeah, even the bad times.   Most people our age have a paid for house, a nice paid for car,  a pension, an RV but God put us on a different path, and we have loved every minute of it, no regret. He has always supplied our needs. 

Thanks for reading our "story".  Of course we would like prayer as we continue to minister. 
 1. for our health
2. for wisdom and understanding as we work with missionaries home for furlough. 
3. prayer for the one thing we don't like to mention but one must have, money,  it  buy gas to put in our car to visit these ones home.  Our support has dropped since we took up a stateside ministry.  And if I could be specific, we are looking to buy an newer car. Our 1992 Buick runs pretty good because my husband works on it a lot.  We have experience a few  breakdowns on the road which are costly so we have taken to renting a car for long trips. 
4.  For our two children, Jared and Tara and their families.   Our son and daughter in the picture are the best of the best and they have given us five grandchildren.   Yeah, we are blessed. 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

After Thoughts

Hindsight will turn into insight when God is in the picture.  As I look back to months ago when I first started studying for the ladies retreat then look at the pile of notes taken I am amazed at how God whittled down, changed and brought focus to what He wanted me to say.

For those who prayed for me, it was nothing short of a miracle that as I spoke I did not cough once and my voice according to those ladies did not sound raspy.  I felt the power of everyone praying all through my body...there was strength in my spirit.

After three session on being  wise  hearted God helped me bring it to a close with these three points that keeps us from being courageous wise hearted women of faith.

1. Full garage, empty soul.  Materialism conditions our soul to play life very safe and be  selfish.  By contrast, courage requires us to be thankful and not trust our stuff here on earth.   Jesus warned against materialism...a life comprised of a full garage but with an empty trivial souls.

2. Cynicism drains our lives of hope, optimism and creatively..raw material that help build our foundation of courage.  The ability to always see the worst in people and situations is often a hiding place for fear, timidity and indifference. It allows us to be invulnerable observers rather than participants in stepping out in faith  which could result in sacrificing.  Worse, the cynic often justifies his lack of redemptive and courageous action. Ultimately, cynicism is the language of self preservation, which drains us of courage and shrivels our soul

3.  But the one that robs us most of courage is fear.  Fear is destructive and irrational. For example, some people possess a destructive pre-occupation with what others think about them--what the Bible calls part of the "fear of man", that cause them to betray their values and integrity .  They have the disease to please man instead of God. 

We all face a staggering array of "what if". What if I get cancer, what if my spouse dies, what if my husband never loves me, what if my child never believe in Jesus, and the list could go on and on.

The uncomfortable truth is, any of those things could happen.  No one is free from tragedy and pain. There are no guarantees of an easy life.  For any of us, Ever.

What steal courage from you, materialism, cynicism or just plain fear?

Monday, October 6, 2014

Dancing Deer Retreat

Hello my blog friends, Sending out  a prayer request to those of you who come by my blog.  This weekend...Oct. 10-12 is the date of the Ladies Retreat  I am speaking at.  I am a little over a week into a nasty upper respiratory illness that has caused a cough that grips me till I am short of breathe.  Tomorrow morning I return to the doctor seeking help again so need your prayers for wisdom and direction on how they should treat me.  

Pray also for the group of women who will meeting at this gorgeous retreat center located near the coast in California. 

God has been fine toning my outline as I read and study and read some more.  Now today I am putting to paper all my notes into an outline that will be easy to follow so  I will not get side tracked. 

"Wise Hearted" is the heart of my three session.

  A wise heart is a seeking heart. 

A wise heart is a forgiving heart 

A wise heart is a courageous heart. 

To top that off I get to give the message before we take communion on Sunday which I count a huge honor.

Thank you for your prayers.