Category Archives: Quotes

On “help me with my unbelief”

✝️💒FCC Sunday, 3-11-18

Miracles series
-Pastor Josh Earls

Matthew 11:11
J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS)
11 “Believe me, no one greater than John the Baptist has ever been born of all mankind, and yet a humble member of the kingdom of Heaven is greater than he.

God help me overcome my disbelief.

No doubt.
1. God does not condemn us or abandon us.
2. God meets us @point of need. Where r u in pain/suffering.
3. God imbues/impregnates us with faith.

to impregnate or inspire

Winston Churchill
imbued them
with character & resolve
during World War.
He would go out & help w/re-building.


Mark 9:14-27
The Voice (VOICE)
14 When they reached the rest of the disciples, Jesus saw that a large crowd had gathered and that among them the scribes were asking questions. 15 Right when the crowd saw Jesus, they were overcome with awe and surged forward immediately, nearly running over the disciples.
Jesus (to the scribes): 16 What are you debating with My disciples? What would you like to know?
Father (in the crowd): 17 Teacher, I have brought my son to You. He is filled with an unclean spirit. He cannot speak, 18 and when the spirit takes control of him, he is thrown to the ground to wail and moan, to foam at the mouth, to grind his teeth, and to stiffen up. I brought him to Your followers, but they could do nothing with him. Can You help us?
Jesus: 19 O faithless generation, how long must I be among you? How long do I have to put up with you? Bring the boy to Me.
20 They brought the boy toward Jesus; but as soon as He drew near, the spirit took control of the boy and threw him on the ground, where he rolled, foaming at the mouth.
Jesus (to the father): 21 How long has he been like this?
Father: Since he was a baby. 22 This spirit has thrown him often into the fire and sometimes into the water, trying to destroy him. I have run out of options; I have tried everything. But if there’s anything You can do, please, have pity on us and help us.
Jesus: 23 What do you mean, “If there’s anything?” All things are possible, if you only believe.
Father (crying in desperation): 24 I believe, Lord. Help me to believe!
25 Jesus noticed that a crowd had gathered around them now. He issued a command to the unclean spirit.
Jesus: Listen up, you no-talking, no-hearing demon. I Myself am ordering you to come out of him now. Come out, and don’t ever come back!
26 The spirit shrieked and caused the boy to thrash about; then it came out of the boy and left him lying as still as death. Many of those in the crowd whispered that he was dead. 27 But Jesus took the boy by the hand and lifted him to his feet.


No argue/debate while someone suffering.


A gospel
as well as


He has Logos, the computer program.
No “miracle” mentioned in Bible,
We can’t define it,
Creates a place of worship.


Trust God for everything.

Profound need

medical issues/relationships/emotions.


About grandpa@74,
Jesus in room last few days.
“Relieved to know,




Faith is always stretching.

one more step.


“Help me with my unbelief.”


Opportunity to take step of faith=card to write on… no have to put name on it…

what do u need?


We ask not
We believe not.

Post it for 4 weeks during series (in lobby).

Opportunity to take step of faith.




Expect the unexpected.




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On relat(able)

✝️💒Wednesday, 3-7-18 series by Pastor Charles Partney@FCC


He’s 45.

Still hugs & kisses mom cuz figures she can still beat him up.

Video after pastor teach
Louie Gigliano (?sp?)


Love yourself.

Ephesians 2:10
The Passion Translation (TPT)
10 “We have become his poetry,
a re-created people

that will fulfill the destiny

He has given each of us,

we are joined to Jesus…
Even before we were born,
God planned in advance
our destiny
the good works
we would do to fulfill it!”

We r God’s masterpiece.


Matthew 3:13-17


“Jesus Is Baptized by John
13 Then

Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan River.

He came to John,

wanting John to baptize him.
14 But John tried to stop him.
John said, “Why do you come to me to be baptized? I should be baptized by you!”
15 Jesus answered, “Let it be this way for now. We should do whatever God says is right.” Then John agreed.
16 So Jesus was baptized.

As soon as He came up out of the water, the sky opened, and He saw God’s Spirit coming down on Him like a dove. 17 A voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, the one I love. I am very pleased with him.”




say to yourself in mirror:
“I love u”
“I’m thankful for u”
“U r a rare & beautiful treasure.”
“I forgive u.”
“U r here for a special purpose.”
“I am holding u to a high standard.”
“I believe in u.”


Pastor Partney has been in Ministry for 25 yrs.


While working for a school district he sees generational poverty…
Same with anger or self-esteem, etc.

God is our heavenly-Father.

Things can change,

He can do the impossible.


His Dad saved@age 30,
Gave it all he had.


1 John 3:1-11

In the VOICE:

“Consider the kind of extravagant love the Father has lavished on us—He calls us children of God!

It’s true;

we are His beloved children.

in the same way

the world didn’t recognize Him,

the world does not recognize us either.

we feel like we are not good enough to be loved by God,

we should remember

that God’s love is greater than our doubts.

We must silence the sounds of condemnation


we can hear

the voice of God’s loving assurance



that He has selected us

to be part of His family.
2 My loved ones,
we have been adopted into God’s family;


we are officially His children now.
The full picture of our destiny is not yet clear,


we know this much:

when Jesus appears,

we will be like Him

because we will see Him

just as He is.

3 All those who focus their hopes on Him


His coming

seek to purify themselves

just as He is pure.
4 Everyone who lives a life of habitual sin is living in moral anarchy.
That’s what sin is.
5 You realize that He came to eradicate sins, that there is not the slightest bit of sin in Him.
6 The ones who live in an intimate relationship with Him do not persist in sin, but anyone who persists in sin has not seen and does not know the real Jesus.
7 Children,
don’t let anyone pull one over on you.

The one doing the right thing
is just imitating Jesus, the Righteous One.
If you are wondering if your faith is authentic, take a look at your life. Are you doing what is right?
8 The one persisting in sin belongs to the diabolical one, who has been all about sin from the beginning. That is why the Son of God came into our world: to destroy the plague of destruction inflicted on the world by the diabolical one.
9 Everyone who has been born into God’s family avoids sin as a lifestyle because the genes of God’s children come from God Himself. Therefore, a child of God can’t live a life of persistent sin.
10 So it is not hard to figure out who are the children of God and who are the children of the diabolical one: those who lack right standing
and those who don’t show love for one another
do not belong to God.
11 The central truth—the one you have heard since the beginning of your faith—is that we must love one another.”


God’s Love is greater than our doubts.

“If u can’t get excited about that,
Your wood is wet.”

“Make a wooden indian stand up.”


Love one another.

U r a child of God.
The more u love God, the more u love people.


? & Answer:

What does
Being a
Child of God
To u?

I’ve been chosen by God.

God has no favorites.


What does a ‘Chip off the old block’ mean to u?

Carbon-copy of parent,
Not in a positive way.


Can’t keep sinning
Child of God.


Even the prodigal son went away for a season.


Video session… see below. 💙

Matthew 6:9-13
“This, then, is how u should pray:
‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be Your Name,
Your Kingdom come,
Your Will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us today
our daily bread.
Forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
lead us not into temptation,
Deliver us from the evil one.
For Yours
is the Kingdom & the Power & the Glory forever.


Love God:

Honoring your father & mother.
Exod. 20:1-17
“The Ten Commandments
20 These are the things God told his people:
2 “I am the Lord your God. I am the one who freed you from the land of Egypt, where you were slaves.
3 “You must not worship any other gods except me.
4 “You must not make any idols.
Don’t make any statues or pictures of anything up in the sky or of anything on the earth or of anything down in the water.
5 Don’t worship or serve idols of any kind, because I, the Lord, am your God. I hate my people worshiping other gods.
People who sin against me become my enemies, and I will punish them. And I will punish their children, their grandchildren, and even their great-grandchildren.
6 But I will be very kind to people who love me and obey my commands. I will be kind to their families for thousands of generations.
7 “You must not use the name of the Lord your God to make empty promises. If you do, the Lord will not let you go unpunished.
8 “You must remember to keep the Sabbath a special day.
9 You may work six days a week to do your job.
10 But the seventh day is a day of rest in honor of the Lord your God. So on that day no one should work—not you, your sons and daughters, or your men and women slaves.
Even your animals and the foreigners living in your cities must not work!
11 That is because the Lord worked six days and made the sky, the earth, the sea, and everything in them. And on the seventh day, he rested. In this way the Lord blessed the Sabbath—the day of rest. He made that a very special day.
12 “You must honor and respect your father and your mother. Do this so that you will have a full life in the land that the Lord your God gives you.
13 “You must not murder anyone.
14 “You must not commit adultery.
15 “You must not steal anything.
16 “You must not tell lies about other people.
17 “You must not want to take your neighbor’s house. You must not want his wife. And you must not want his men and women servants or his cattle or his donkeys. You must not want to take anything that belongs to another person.”



How we relate to ourselves.


Dads r to empower their kids.


Absent parents.

Abusive parents. Damage.


R u carrying the weight
Championing your parents?


The Gospel reconciles us.

Can impact our relationships.
We can see ourselves

the way

God sees us.

Come to know Jesus. Get a new identity=u become a Christian.


John 1:10
The Voice (VOICE)
“Jesus as the Light does not call out from a distant place but draws near by coming into the world.
10 He entered our world,

a world He made;

yet the world did not recognize Him


Jesus in the world
Even though the world was made thru Him.


1 John 3:1
“See what great love

the Father has lavished on us,
that we should be called children of God!
And that is what we are!
The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.”

We r called Children of God!


Think about God as your father. Not performance-based. Not your biological father. God is perfection.

Imagine that.


We no have to be part of what has been broken in our life.

If stuff not working right in the inside,
To not lean
into the negativ
Complain about your biological parents.

No blame them.
No repeat the pain.


Galatians 3:13
The Passion Translation (TPT)
13 “Yet, Christ paid the full price
to set us free from the curse of the law. He absorbed it completely
as He became a curse in our place…”

Jesus came to break the curse. Jesus became the curse for us.
We have a new Dad. We are Children of Almighty God.

We’ve got the best of all our parents.

Lean into God.

Be the reflection
The Love of God
To all our relationships.


Ephesians 6:1
obey your parents in the Lord,
for this is right”

Obey your parents in the Lord
Not wacky stuff
1st commandment w/mith a promise
Go well w u
U enjoy
Long life
On the earth.


The Gospel puts things back together
Would not.


God loves u. He sees u
As a rare & beautiful treasure.
(All the things from top of handout)


Pastor Partney teach after video too:

Your ability to relate to others
Is wrapped up
With how u view yourself
How u
Relate to
Your parents.


Enemy uses in our relationships:
he wants to throw us off balanced,
From Eden,
“Did God say…?”
Eve should not have talked to enemy.

“Did God really say…?”

Enemy uses with us…he is a liar. Sets us back from understandg Who God is.


Establish a healthy relationship with God
My heavenly-Father.

God will show u
True Fatherhood.

He is what u long for deep in your heart.



Look to God
To teach u
How to love your children.Example:
Prodigal son.
No earned it.

No deserv it.

No right to ask for it,
Father understood,
He could not capture son’s heart by forcing him.

God died for us

we were yet sinners.

The father had a place prepared for the prodigal son.
He was right there waiting for him to come home.

Lots of parenting tips in the story of the prodigal son.


“Spanking is not punishg,
It’s discipline. Love your kids. “
Just don’t do it when u r emotional.
Esp. Negative emotions.


“I’ll go back to my father.”
He remembered

Be ready to receive them.

Be a constant in their life.

Prodigal son KNEW his father would always be there.


“U can take #10,000 steps away
It’s only
One step back (to God).”-pcp


The father ran to the prodigal son. Ran & met him.
He did not have to do,
He lavished his love on the son.

Best robe. Representd the family.
The ring. Conduct business as family.
The sandals. Shoes were not common.

All things that spoke of sonship. Of family.

All these things restored him.

What was lost is now found.

?s about what saw as raised:







No right or wrong answers
Each affect way u r now.

Either reinforce what’s been broken in our lives
Lean into Him.


Be affectionate. Hug.


Challenge our thinkg with the Truth.


He keeps conversations in semi-public view.
Young lady share she no know anything about healthy relationships. So no want to get married,

Had twin girls.
She honored her mom. Poured into her mom. Respected her.
The mom became a believer.

Our heritage
Does not determine our future.

We no have to agree,
We should always honor our parents.
Tell ‘em truth in love. Show love.
Wisdom of Holy Spirit when to speak & when not to speak.

Bring unhealthy family traits to God
Ask for His help.

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Filed under FCC, Quotes, Relationships

on The Fruit of the Spirit

I got the book interlibrary loan (from St. Joseph, MO)

as I attended a ‘small’ group at my church…

it wasn’t small, it was as big as normal Wednesday night service.

Led by C.R. Kersten.

He mainly shared his life experiences… which was actually VERY helpful.

From time to time he read from the book.


before the session was over,

I called the library.

Good read:

“The Fruit of the Spirit”


Thomas E. Trask


Wayde I. Goodall

I KNEW I was in trouble when I was putting post-it notes on the back-cover…

Here’s what stuck out to me:

-back cover-

“… if u let God’s Spirit grow His fruit in your heart.


In the mystery of the Trinity, the fruit of the Spirit is really the life of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is His Spirit, whom the Father sent. As His Spirit indwells & controls us, His Fruit, or personality becomes manifest as we yield ourselves to Him.

It is only as we are filled with the Holy Spirit and under His control that His Fruit is manifest & His Will expressed…

…we are filled with the Holy Spirit by faith, according to God’s command (Ephesians 5:18) and His Promise (1 John 5:14-15). We ask, believe, & receive.

…the fruit of the Spirit is demonstrated thru us by faith.

… could change the world.


… the heavenly Father, the Gardener, would prune so that they could produce fruit… only possible if we are connected to Jesus. As we grow in our Christian walk, we understand more and more why we must be pruned.

Jesus said, ‘I am the vine, you are the branches’ =  John 15:5 – when our lives are totally committed to God and we are determined to obey Him, we will bear the fruit of Christ because He is the Vine! We cannot help bearing all the fruit of the Spirit when we remain in Him.

He changed when he made the decision to give Jesus Christ total control of his life…

‘there was a calm about him

you only find in someone who has found what life & joy are all about.’

The believer’s union with the Lord Jesus is no work of human wisdom or of human will, but an act of God

God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts = Galatians 4:6 KJV – the same Spirit who dwelt, and still dwells, in the Son becomes the life of the believer

As a follower of Jesus Christ, you are connected to the Vine. Thru His roots, the nourishment of the Spirit flows into you and enables you to act like Christ & exhibit the fruit of the Spirit.

Jesus said, ‘My Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in Me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit He prunes so that it will be even more fruitful’ = John 15:1-2.

A gardener puts seed into the ground & carefully cultivates it.

…prunes so that the plant will produce more fruit. Pruning strengthens the plant by ridding it of unproductive branches…

God’s will is that none will be lost.

Jesus said we would know His disciples by the fruit they yeild = Matt. 7:15-23

…words w/o actions,

branches w/leaves but no fruit… fruitless branches are on their way to destruction.

If He did not prune us, we would not grow. … He sees things in our lives we do not see. He knows our hearts when we do not.

God typically prunes His children by conviction from the Holy Spirit…

every conviction that is held should be undergirded by love.

Hebrews 12:7-8, 10 – Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons…God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in His Holines.

John 15:5…apart from Me you can do nothing.

The word ‘remain’ is used 10 times in the first ten verses of John 15. As Christians we are branches, and to produce fruit we must ‘remain’ in the Vine.

Jn 15

‘…so believers must depend upon & look to the life of Christ within them to find their  spiritual vitality

…the fruit nourishes others and contains within itself the seeds of its own reproduction, so the outward manifestation of the life of Christ in us nourishes and reproduces His life in others (quote from The Leadership Bible).’

The secret to Jesus’ fruitful life was His contact with the Father.

Lk 5:16

‘A tree may bear many apples, but all come from the same tree. In the same way, the Holy Spirit is the source of all fruit in our lives (Billy Graham quote).’

When people experience our fruit by seeing us act in ways that are different from the ways the world would act, they want to know more about the God who enabled us to be this way.

‘The Fruit of the Spirit’ by Manford George Gutzke compares the fruit of the Spirit to beams of light:

‘All the colors of the rainbow are in every beam of sunlight.

They are all there at any one time.

They may not always come into vision,


they are all present.’

1 Jn 3:24

1 Jn 2:5 – our obedience to Christ’s commands prove that we remain in Him.

If disobey Him/Word = no bear fruit = chosen to disconnect and not remain in Him

…Christians live in the world, but as citizens of God’s kingdom, display His values.

…demonstrate the fruit of God’s Spirit by cooperating w/Him thru our dependence on Him.

People fruit

…people we have introduced to Christ or influenced in a positive way for Him.

Giving fruit

The time, energy, and money we give to the cause of Christ are fruit that help spread the gospel and minister to people in need – Rom 15: 26-28.

Gospel fruit

When believers spread the gospel of Christ, it will bear fruit – Col 1:6.

Fruit of praise

…telling others that Christ is Lord = fruit that honors God.

This book is about producing the fruit of the Spirit, the very fruit that comes from God himself.

…actions & attitudes that demonstrate we are connected to the true Vine.

When u know what is best for others,

do u communicate it w/compassion & love? Truth is communicated to others in an attitude of love – Eph 4:15.

…we need the Spirit to bring fruit into our lives because we cannot produce godliness apart from the Spirit.

Rom 13:13-14 – …clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ,


do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.

-Chapter 2-


Building healthy relationships

1 Jn 4:16 – God is love.

If we walk in fellowship with Him, we cannot help but be reminded of how to love people with our words, deeds, and actions.

Christlike love is called agape love.

…we should love people with God’s love.

We are people of free will who constantly make decisions to do the right thing.

The self-control/discipline portion of the fruit of the spirit is at work as we choose to respond to others with God’s agape love.

Christianity is about relationships

Jn 15:9-10, 12 – …if u obey My commands, u will remain in My Love, just as I have obeyed My Father’s commands and remain in His Love… My command is this: Love each other as I have loved u.

His Love persuades us to take risks for the sake of others.

1 Jn 3:10 – …anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother.

1 Jn 3:18 – Let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.

We must decide every day… to be people who are known for how we love.

Agape Love = the love God has for us


the kind of love God wants us to have for others.

Agape = ‘that highest & noblest form of love which sees something infinitely precious in its object (C. S. Lewis, “The Four Loves”).’

Love = ‘a steady direction of the will toward another’s lasting good (Bishop Stephen Neill quote).’

We are to love when we see no results, even when the object of our love continues on their path of rejecting, avoiding, or turning against us. Jesus spent much of His last 3 years w/12… one He knew would be disloyal – Mk 14:10-44 & Jn 6:70-71

…seek out ways to show His Mercy.

Our love should never give up.

Jesus will help u. As u cling to Him & decide to treat people like He does, your heart will be transformed and God’s Love will flow thru u.

Do u have your emotions, words, and actions under control?

Our reactions to outside forces demonstrate whether we really are in control.

…emotional baggage affects how we talk to ourselves


how we treat others.

The Holy Spirit will let us know when we are being unloving, unkind & unrighteously angry… obey & do the loving thing.

What u do can bring encouragement, enrichment, & energy to someone today.

If u can’t say it,

write it.

…stay close to the One who continually purifies us.

You will look different to the world because the fruit you produce.

1 John 4:7 – Love one another – Love comes from God.

…stop trying to please people more than God

Love forgives

Unforgiveness binds us and causes our spirit to be negative & impure.

…forgiveness & healing are one

Love Compels

Love is resilient

Acts 7:60 – Lord, do not hold this sin against them.

Luke 23:34 – Father, forgive, for they do not know what they are doing.

We may be shocked, dazed, or overwhelmed for a time, but we regain our strength because we are attached to the One who supplies abundant love.

Love Understands

…love with God’s Love…

…we don’t reject them like everyone else…

-Chapter 3-


Rejoicing in any situation

…nowhere in the Bible will u find God advising us to pursue happiness.

God wants us to be full of joy.

…connected to the Vine.

Like the other fruit of the Spirit,

Joy is not something we produce on our own… supernatural result of belonging to the One who is pure joy.

…understand that joy will be a reality in your life

no matter what happens…

Jas 1:2-3 – Consider it all joy…

Hebr 12:2 – …who for the joy set before Him endured the cross.

Joy is much more significant than a happy countenance. True joy, which only comes from the Holy Spirit, is possible even when life is rough, when we are going thru great disappointment, loss, or grief.

Joy = Chara = in the New Testament, has a spiritual source, such as ‘the joy given by the Holy Spirit’ – 1 Thess. 1:6

Joy of the Lord – Neh 8:10

…our joy can be complete – John 15:11

…our lives are hidden in Christ


that we can be led by the Spirit thru anything.

Rom 8:28

‘God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.’ – C.S. Lewis in ‘Mere Christianity’

…Jesus, the one who is able to give us an eternal perspective no matter what our circumstances.

Rejoice because you are sure of your salvation

Luke 15:8-10 – …rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents (words from Jesus).

Increase your joy by leading others to Jesus Christ

Realize how present-day battles can contribute to your eternal destiny

Suffering can file all the rough edges off your character,


it can further harden u.

…the struggle necessary to pass thru… God’s way of forcing fluid from the body into the wings (moth emerging from cocoon).

Sometimes the struggle is exactly what we need.

…suffering is part of life…

Rejoice when God is glorified

1 Cor 10:31 – Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God

…purposing to be obedient in all He asks us to do.

Increase your joy by being filled with the Holy Spirit

‘God commands us to be filled w/the Spirit, and if we are not filled, it is because we are living beneath our privileges (D.L. Moody quote).’

Acts 2:39 – The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off – for all whom the Lord our God will call.

The Holy Spirit is grieved when believers ignore His conviction for sinful thinking, feelings, or behavior

and push aside His warning to act or think differently… repent & determine to be obedient to the Lord…His filling can be repeated whenever we feel spiritually dry or our boldness to witness has turned to fear – Acts 3:19 = times of refreshing to our tired souls.

…God is glorified in the way you live

and because Christ has filled u with the Holy Spirit…

-Chapter 4-


Overcoming anxiety & conflict

John 14:27 – Peace I leave with you;

My Peace I give u.

…calmness that a nation/city enjoys when it has a caring, competent, & secure leader.

It means experiencing quiet in your inner self.

…learn to depend on the Holy Spirit & understand that He will be with us in every situation, we will be more at rest & anxiety will be further away.

Phil 4:7 – The peace of God, which transcends all understanding,

will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

…peace comes from the One to whom we are connected.

…cling to the promises of God’s Word so that our hearts and minds are guarded from worry… we can learn to be content

whatever the circumstances – Col 3:15-16.

Isa 9:6 – True peace begins when a person meets the Prince of Peace

John Newton – ‘Amazing Grace’ song

John 16:33 – In Me you may have peace.

Peace can replace worry and anxiety in your life

Worry = German = wergen = to choke

Mt 6:25, 27, 34 – Do not worry about your life…

God’s peace… will enhance all you do.

Peace can replace hostility and anger in your life

Anger can be controlled by the peace of God.

Anger can devour your happiness, steal your joy, attack your health, destroy your relationships, and injure your faith.


Realize actions are controlled by the will, so u can decide…

You can stop and pray for help.

You can take anger out by doing housework/washing the car.

With children,

get upset with rebellion, disobedience, lying, breaking the 10 commandments


other things that will hurt the child or someone else.

Anger at satan’s work should take us to our knees to intercede for others…to volunteer, visit the sick, love the broken, & feed the hungry;


motivate us to vote


speak out on moral matters.

Humble yourself and listen to other people.

Much anger is caused by pride

Grief may also be a factor,

cuz anger is a stage in the grieving process for any loss.

Peace will enable you to resolve stress

The average desk worker has 36 hrs of work on desk


spends 3 hrs/week sorting the piles.

American workers put in more hours on the job than any other industrialized country…

averaging 280 more hours a year than the Germans.


We spend 8 months of our lives opening junk mail.

Luke 2:14 – peace to men on whom His favor rests

…Jesus can speak to u about balance, rest & peace – 2 Cor 4:8-9…vs 7 = jars of clay = the most precious treasures to be concealed in valueless containers.

Peace in the midst of Crises

…Whatever my lot,

Thou has taught me to say,

It is well,

it is well with my soul (from Horatio Gates Spafford’s song after daughters lost at sea).

God’s Peace encourages us to be peacemakers

…we are not to repay eveil for evil – Rom 12:17-21


leave it in the hands of God.

If u know the Peacemaker,

He will produce within u the fruit of the Spirit called peace.

-Chapter 5-


The benefits of waiting

…need great quantities of patience while raising children.

only thing do was pray


show love & patience

Greek= patience = macrothumia = combination of two words:

macro = long


thurmos = temper.

= specifically points to the idea of anger taking a very long time to build before it is expressed… if it is every expressed, it is under control.

… putting up with those who need long and patient love & kindness (Gorden Fee quote).

I believe God had a purpose in direction Paul to list the fruit of the Spirit in a certain order – Gal. 5:22-23… all begin w/love…

Love is the Christlike reaction to people’s malice.

Patience is self-restraint in the face of provocation.

…thinks before it respond

…if it responds

God is patient with us – 2 Peter 3:9

…give them light on the way they were to take <desert@night/40 years>

slow to anger


abounding in love

<don’t fall back into old ruts… evil


u r resting… 40 years in desert>

Hurry is the great enemy of spiritual life in our day.

Hurry can destroy our souls.

Hurry can keep us from living well.

‘Hurry is not of the devil;

hurry is the devil.’ – Carl Jung

We can grow in patience

You must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life…

God is not in a hurry –

He has everything under control.

Patience will develop naturally as we grow in Christ and depend on the Holy Spirit, because we are part of the one who is patience.

Impatience often comes because of faulty or inappropriate goals

…we need to listen to our emotions, for they are a gift from God.

…feeling anxious, angry or depressed = could be because we have made goals that are not wise.

Any goal that can be blocked by forces out of your control is not a healthy goal, because the success you desire in meeting that goal is out of your hands…

Hard work and diligence r good qualities;


if we are perfectionists,

we will be frustrated, dissatisfied, and impatient because there is always more to do.

…find a point of closure in our efforts…

…expecting fewer things to be perfect

will result in patience, greater humility, less anger, and greater joy in life.

Emotions such as anger, anxiety, and depression are often present because something is not going the way we want it to go…

Do your best

to trust God

with the rest.

…find a place of rest


trust God to work out His perfect will.

The only way we can truly be patient with others is to see them thru the eyes of Jesus.

…<don’t > harden your hearts toward them when u see them acting in horrible, evil ways towards others.

Eph 5:22, 33 & Col 3:18 – Wives are to respect their husbands & submit to them.

The marriage relationship itself, in virtually all areas – from finances to discipline of children – requires patience & commitment.

You are to be patient with people who do not know Christ.

‘not wanting any to perish’

…go to Christ daily

to seek His Will,

ask for forgiveness of sin,


determine that we will glorify Him in all we say & do.

If your past troubles u,

choose to act & speak differently today.

The incredible patience He has with us is the kind of patience He wants us to have with one another.

Thus it cannot be separated from love.

…respond to their behavior with love, truth, and proper timing

instead of hastily


with uncontrolled anger.

Walking in the Spirit means that we listen to God


follow His instructions as we encounter various challenges throughout our day.

-Chapter 6-


Reaching out to others

We should be concerned for the welfare of others and do all we can to be kind to them even if we are taken advantage of.

The fact that there is potential for people to use us or be dishonest with us must not prevent us from doing acts of kindness.

We are to see deeper than the potential for manipulation & deceit.

We must see their need.

Even concerning our enemies, Jesus said, ‘Do good to them, and lend to them w/o expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the most High, because He is kind to the ungrateful & wicked – Luke 6:35-36 – those who imitate God in being kind to the ungrateful & wicked will be sons of the Most High.

God’s kindness to sinners is designed to lead them to repentance – Rom 2:4.

His kindness to believers should encourage us to continue in His kindness by treating others as He treated us – Rom 11:22 & Eph 4:32…

for love is patient & kind – 1 Cor 13:4.

When conviction didn’t go away…give

…we should seldom repress an urge to kind.

The fruit of the Spirit is more than an attitude or trait that we desire;

it is evidence that the Holy Spirit lives in us.

God’s purpose in having the Holy Spirit dwell within believers is that we might depend on Him to direct our lives & illustrate God’s personality to others.

Greek = kindness = chrestos = goodness in action, sweetness of disposition, gentleness in dealing with others, benevolence, kindness, affability.

=ability to act for the welfare of those taxing your patience.

The Holy Spirit removes abrasive qualities from the character of the one under His control.

In Jesus’ story of the good Samaritan

He points out three characteristics of kindness:

it is compassionate,

it takes action,


it is powerful.

…He saw their need as an opportunity to help.

Luke 7:13

God helps us even when we have brought trouble on ourselves. We are to do likewise.

Kindness takes action

Col 3:12 – As God’s chosen people,

holy & dearly loved,

clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness & patience.

We must be ready to help our family members when they need us.

…a lifestyle of showing kindness in our homes…in our church, community, & workplace.

…stop to investigate when they see a need…

2 Tim 2:24 – characteristics of godly leaders – The Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone.

Kind people r sensitive to other’s needs – Phil 2:4.

…we need to be truthful with others


we need others around us who will speak truth into our lives in a loving way.

As children grow older it is absolutely necessary that they develop maturity… the reality of having to work for a living


for the things they desire.

Ps 23:6

God, our Father,

is constantly looking for ways to help us,

bless us,

and to care for us.

He is always ready to give us counsel.

As God’s children

we are to be like Him.

God is kind,


His Spirit dwells in your life. He constantly urges you to forgive those who have hurt u,

taken advantage of u,

or rejected u.

Look deeper than their mistreatment & be kind anyway.

Don’t dwell on how they have hurt u;

look deeper & understand that God loves them


wants to show His kindness to them thru u. His Kindness & Mercy could come thru your decision to do a good deed or to change your attitude toward them. Ask God to help u forgive them & to be kind to them. He will help u.

-Chapter 7-


Learning to live generously


God-given attributes make people want to be around us

Jesus said that only God is good – Mk 10:17-18.

Agathosune = Greek = goodness = combines being good & doing good. It means kindness in actual manifestation, virtue equipped for action, a bountiful propensity both to will & to do what is good, intrinsic goodness producing generosity, & godlike state or being.

…to please God, without expecting medals & rewards

Eph 5:8-9 – …Live as children of light …for the fruit of light consists in all goodness, righteousness & truth

Goodness is not just what u say but what you do. Those who possess this quality are generous by nature.

…the Holy Spirit continually prompts us to treat people as Jesus would.

…each person ultimately chooses their behavior.

Rom 3:23 – all have sinned & fall short of the glory of God.

When we become Christians our basic nature changes

2 Cor 5:16-21

Rom 3:26

Rom 6:18

1 John 1:9

Col 1:27

Phil 2:13

Eph 2:4

Col 3:1-3

Rom 8:1-17

2 Cor 3:18

2 Pet 3:18

Mt 22:37-39

1 John 4:7-8, 11, 20-21

…we are in Christ…

…the Holy Spirit helps us control the sinful nature.

Ps 23:6

The Bible is God’s Manual on living a good life

Ps 119:9, 11 – …keep your way pure, by living according to Your Word.

I have hidden Your Word in my heart that I might not sin against You.

Jas 1:22 – Do not merely listen to the Word, & so deceive yourselves.

Do what it says.

God’s Word teaches right behavior& will help us to have a good life.

The Bible is more important than anything else u could read…

‘The Bible will keep u from sin,


sin will keep u from the Bible.’ – D.L. Moody

There is no question

that what we watch & listen to

has a tremendous influence on how we think & act.

What r u permitting to come into your life?

Our mind is a precious commodity, & we need to do all we can to protect it.

We must guard our mind,


the Bible tells us how – Phil. 4:8…make a conscious decision to think about what we should be thinking about… a decision to reject harmful thoughts…

…your decision to be obedient to God can get u into trouble.

Before they were taken into captivity… Daniel had decided NOT to defile himself (Dan 1:8)… before he faced decisions about what was right & wrong… made a decision in his heart to serve the Lord no matter what… no compromise.

Holy Spirit will speak to u thru your convictions

Rom 12:9 – Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

1 Pet 2:20 – if u suffer for doing good & endure it, this is commendable before God.

-Chapter 8-


Foundation of true friendship

Greek = pistis = faith, belief, trusted.

Those who are faithful

are dependable,


we can place our trust in them.

Most of all, we are to be faithful in our obedience to the Lord… we will be judged on how faithful we were to all that God asked us to do – Mt 25:23.

…being God’s friend is a different kind of relationship, unique in its level of trust & respect.

Friendship involves openness in communication, vulnerability, transparency,


a sharing of ideas, dreams, & goals.

Friendship is special & is to be cherished.

Do they trust God


want to do their own thing??

…disciplined with thei rtime,

if they keep their word,

if they complete the job,


in the process, if they treat people well.

One major sign of immaturity is a person’s refusal to accept responsibility.

…if they cannot handle money correctly or get up in time for school, college, or their job,

they have not learned responsibility,


it is not wise to give them privileges.

Mt 25:21, 23 – God’s kingdom is organized in such a way that if we are faithful in small things, we will be given more responsibility.

When we disobey or refuse to accept what God has asked us to do,

we are unfaithful.

More responsibility is good… laziness is punished

Only people who invest get a return

Keeping our commitments

We need to be good stewards & try to live as we would on our own personal budgets.

Luke 16:12

-Chapter 9-


The strength of being tender

Gentleness is a fruit of the Spirit that is fundamental to our relationships,

especially those that can keep us on edge – those with people who are pushy or offensive,

who live in so much private pain that they reject our attempts to get close,

or who have caused us to lose patience

either because of our own weariness


their lack of self-control.

Gentleness is a disposition that is even tempered, tranquil, unpretentious, & has its passions under control.

…pardon & forgive those who have injured them,

know when to speak words of correction & when to remain quiet…

rule their own spirits…

understand the strength of being tender.

Carefully chosen words that soothe strong emotions r referred to as gentle words.

…possessing tact & gracious courtesy that causes others to retain their self-esteem & dignity.

Gentleness can help us form better relationships

Possibly the three most challenging groups r those who don’t agree w/us,

those who correct us,

and those who let us down.

Isa 56:7 – God’s temple was to be a house of prayer for all nations.

…the temple court was the only place Gentles could go to pray,

the court was where the buying & selling were taking place.

Those who came to seek God & worship Him were quickly distracted & disillusioned by all the noise & lack of reverence.

Do they sense our reverence, sincerity, & love for God?

1 Pet 3:15 – Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks u to give the reason for the hope that u have… do with gentleness & respect.

If u notice that every time someone disagrees w/u, u become defensive & angry, it could mean that u r insecure & feel that u always need to win… if u feel angry, ask yourself, Why?

What am I afraid of?

What do I think I will lose if I give in?

No one has to win/lose if u r having a disagreement w/another… truth should be the goal.

Jas 3:17-18 – Wisdom from heaven is 1st of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy & good fruit, impartial and sincere… peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness = let heaven’s wisdom guide your actions & reactions

Those who are strong in gentleness r not defensive, nor do they become angry… they r grateful for the word of correction.

…u must control your feelings & words.

Husbands & fathers need to be cautious about how they speak to their wives & correct their children.

Col 3:19 – not to be harsh

Col 3:21 – Do not embitter your children or they will become discouraged.

1 Peter 3:4 – Wives r to have a gentle & quiet spirit… if married to an unbeliever, he could be won over becuz of her inward beauty.

Men r attracted to women who have their emotions & words under control.

Most men hate confrontation…

<let> peace reign in the home…

find ways to encourage

To keep the peace in the home, we need to be completely humble & gentle (Eph 4:2)… let gentleness rule our emotions & words.

If we are harsh, pushy, or quick to react,

we will repel others


possibly discourage them from trying again… be forgiving & encouraging… explain tactfully… help them succeed.

He assumed the best & believed in me (quote by Dave Goetz).

…begin conversation w/compliments, then speak to the person as gently as possible.

Gentleness will help keep our response under control while we wait for appropriate timing.

Thus the best way to make friends & motivate people is to be friendly & sincerely respectful of them as people & for what they do.

Be interested in them & remind yourself that they have demands, deadlines, & personal issues of their own.

Phil 2:3-4

Wise people listen to wise people; they are teachable.

God’s leaders are open to different opinions & new information. James said, ‘Humbly accept the word planted in u, which can save u (1:21).’

Humbly & gently come from the same original word as meekness.

‘Humbly’ means to be teachable, to learn & obey truth.

Their words are thoughtfully chosen.

-Chapter 10-


Mastering our passions

Greek = self-control = en kratos.

En = ‘in’

kratos = ‘strength, power, might, or dominion’

A person with en kratos = a person who has strength within.

…the actions of the sinful nature are clear:

sexual immorality, impurity & debauchery; idolatry & witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions & envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like – Gal 5:19-21.

The sinful nature is part of all our lives, & the only way to control it is to live by the Spirit.

When we are loving, we are more joyful.

When we have love & joy, we have peace.

When we have love, joy, & peace, patience is their companion.

Kindness will naturally emanate from a disposition of love, joy, peace, patience, & goodness.

With these portions of the fruit functioning, a foundation is laid for self-control, which allows us to live a life of balance & gives us the strength to stand against excess.

…even seemingly innocent activities & behaviors, can enslave us.

…food is necessary for life, many people are slaves to food.

…addicted to work, sports, television, exercise, sex, & a host of other activities that are not bad if done in moderation & according to God’s principles, which are found in the Bible. Without self-control some harmful habit or behavior can control each of us.

Prov 25:28 – Like a city whose walls r broken down is a man who lacks self-control.

…God will help u in every aspect of your life.

Self-control & self-discipline work together.

1 Cor 9:24-25 – Do u not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.

…we now can have self-control because He will give us the ability. Winning life’s race requires keeping our lives under control.

Prov 16:32 – Better a patient man than a warrior, a man who controls his temper than one who takes a city.

…be cautious about what we read, watch, or think. We must determine to feed our minds truth & purity. We must discipline our spiritual life by developing habits of Bible study, <scripture-> meditation, fasting, & prayers.

2 Peter 1:5-6 – Make every effort to add to your faith goodness;

and to goodness, knowledge;

and to knowledge, self-control.

…commitment to serve Christ & be obedient to His commands.

Forget what is behind


go after the goal.

1 Cor 15:33 – Bad company corrupts good character.

Emotions can be contagious.

Prov 22:24-26 warns us,

Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered, or u may learn his ways & get yourself ensnared.

On the other hand, if we associate w/people of good character who r in control of their emotions, they will likely have a god influence on us.

You can choose to overcome your bad moods.

Gal 5:16 – Live by the Spirit, & u will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature.

When we live by the Spirit we obey God’s Word.

…if Christ is living inside, what spills out is the fruit of the Spirit.

Permit God to show you His Love & Mercy. Let Him fill u up with Himself. Surrender your life completely to Christ & determine that u r going to love Him with all of your heart, soul, & mind. …let Him express His attributes thru your behavior & in ways you treat people. Focus on Him & get so filled up with Christ that He oozes out & impacts everybody with whom u associate.

Don’t try to figure everything out; just be aware of God’s personality of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, & self-control.

-Chapter 11-

Winning the battle within

The power of a victorious life

…doing fantastic – not just good. God is interested in you & me bearing a lot of fruit of the Spirit. John 15:8 – This is to my Father’s Glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be My disciples.

Gal 5:20 – idolatry = points to any form of worship toward an object, principle, idea, or being other than God.

Col 3:5 – greed is listed as a form of idolatry… become an object of worship.

Anything that alters one’s ability to think clearly & act responsibly is a problem.

…orgies = uncontrolled revelry, taking part in unrestrained festivities.

Gal. 5:21

Col 3:6

…you are actually dead – to the sinful nature – and you must remind yourself of that.

We must permit our caretaker to prune us.

Dormant pruning usually causes vigor in a fruit tree.

Pears produce the best fruit on 2-3 year old wood.

Fruit farmers call branches, ‘sucker limbs’ that suck moisture & nutrients from the tree & give nothing in return… produce shade so the sun cannot get to the center of the tree – which affects how fast the fruit grows & gives it its color…

…every Christian needs to be pruned periodically, it is important to have the right attitude toward God’s discipline.

Life is often compared to a marathon, but I think it is more like being a sprinter: long stretches of hard work punctuated by brief moments in which we are given the opportunity to perform at our best (Quote from Michael Johnson).

… react in a kingdom way, demonstrating patience & self-control. The sudden difficulty does not throw us off course…

allowed Him to do His work of pruning off what is destructive, unhealthy, & unproductive.

Times of discipline, trials, and difficulty can be the most important time of our lives because they build character…and character, hope (Rom 5:3-4).

Bad times can be our dearest friends, because through these times we can become more focused on who we are in Christ and develop godly behaviors & attitudes that will prepare us for eternity.

We need to live in the Spirit to produce the Spirit’s Fruit.

Remind yourself who u r in Christ. Try to look at yourself from God’s perspective. Think about the positive rather than the negative. … Living is a moment by moment process. …

Ask Him to help u respond to situations & people as He would.

As Christians we have sensitivity to sinful activities & attitudes…

‘Led by the Spirit’ = does not mean passively; it means to rise up & follow the Spirit by walking in obedience to the Spirit’s desire. …

When the Holy Spirit controls our lives we depend on God for everything – every day. Romans 8:12-14…

Living in the Spirit is similar to breathing. We exhale impure and inhale pure.

When you become aware of something you do, think or feel that is sinful, you deal with it right then. … ask God to forgive and help you.

You must apologize to the person you hurt.

Be careful not to become callused by repressing the Holy Spirit’s voice and disobeying Him…

Ephesians 5:18 – Be filled with the Spirit.

This is a continuous process.

The longer we are inhaling Him and exhaling sinful activities the deeper our roots will go into the soil of Christian-maturity.”


-The Notes-

in the back of the book:

I’m going to eventually look up Neil Anderson’s, “Daily in Christ.”


These guys are also the authors of:

-“The Battle: Defeating the Enemies of Your Soul”

-“The Blessing: Experiencing the Power of the Holy Spirit Today”

-“The Choice: Embracing God’s Vision in the New Millennium”

I will probably look into these at my library, sooner than later!


after taxes are done …

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On Armor Bearer

This is the second book in a triology,


“Chronicle of the Three.”


The first book,

“Bloodline” was originally released under a different publisher


Has been re-released


Blue Ink Press.

Here’s the link to my post about that book:


if you are more into youtube,

here’s a recent review by The Little Librarian:

I have been blessed

with an early read

of book #2

in the trilogy.

It’s good.

Very good.


This time

I did not read

only one chapter

a day

(in an attempt to pace myself),
I indulged,


I’m glad I did.


Two & half days later,

sitting by the fire,

I read what I discoverd was the last sentence…


Am I going to have to wait

a year

for book three?!


Armor Bearer starts fast,


doesn’t slow down.

The writing is full of wit
– even more than

the 1st book.


There are new characters,

who I like.

As well as more of Maggie,

whom I enjoy.


The plot will stick with you…

I woke up

the 2nd morning

into the read

with this line

from the book

repeatedly running through my head:

The Destroyer has a name


even the lowest shadows know it.”


There are more than one

love stories…

Need I say more.



evil has a plan,


Pride is their weakness.


Those who fight the darkness




You find out WHO the Armor-Bearer is.


And before it’s over,

you see even an angel asking for help.


Tabitha Caplinger has a
Very impressive imagination,
Colliding with knowledge,
years of youth ministry,
All surrounded with the unconditional love
of Our Maker, God.

I’m looking forward to buying this book:

“Chronicle of the Three: Armor Bearer”
(& Bloodline)
for birthday gifts in 2017!


I hear there’s going to be a lollipop shirt!

I’ll update when I know more,


For now

feel free to browse merchandise

from the 1st book in the trilogy

on the author’s site:

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on “A Grief Observed” by C.S. Lewis

I just finished the book – only 4 chapters,


I made sure not to read more than one every day or so…

kind of like

when I read his book,

“Screwtape Letters.”

I figured one chapter would be all that I could handle,

especially since I ‘felt’ God was leading me to read it.


It’s been two years since my 1st pregnancy. Time sure does not wait for us to process loss…

I’m grateful C.S. Lewis shared his process…

it ended well.

I’m glad I read it.

I smiled several times in the last chapter.

Just in time to cry listening to a fellow church member share his loss of his brother-in-law.

God’s timing is perfect in all things. I’m glad He made this book stick out to me in this time. I was ready.

Crying is good.

Smiling is good.

I like how in the end, C.S. Lewis went for walks…

in order to sleep at night.

That piece of advice

would help MANY!

He was only married a short time,

and his wife died of cancer… there’s a movie, and yes, I saw that too, but so many years ago, I only have vague shadows of memory of it.

Here’s what stuck out to me from the book if you are interested in reading more…

In the foreword by Madeleine L’Engle, written in August 1988:

“The death of a beloved is an amputation.

Like Lewis, I, too, kept a journal…

It is all right to wallow in one’s journal;

it is a way of getting rid of self-pity and self-indulgence and self-centeredness.

What we work out in our journals we don’t take out on family and friends.”

Introduction written by Douglas H. Gresham:

“… one man’s studied attempts to come to grips with and in the end defeat the emotional paralysis of the most shattering grief of his life.

a small, tight-knit group which became known as ‘The Inklings,’ and which has left us with a legacy of literature. J.R.R. Tolkien, John Wain, Roger Lancelyn-Green, and Neville Coghill were among those who frequented these informal gatherings.

Helen Joy Gresham (nee Davidman), the ‘H.’ referred to in this book, was perhaps the only woman whom Jack ever met who was his intellectual equal and also as well-read and widely educated as he was himself. They shared another common factor: they were both possessed of total recall. Jack never forgot anything he had read, and neither did she.

Jack’s upbringing was a mixture of middle-class Irish… and English, set in the very begininngs of the twentieth century

the daughter of two lower-middle-class Jewish second generation immigrants, her father of Ukrainian, her mother of Polish origins, she was born and brought up in the Bronx in New York City.

I had yet to learn that all human relationships end in pain – it is the price that our imperfection has allowed satan<I refuse to dignify him w/capitalization.> to exact from us for the privilege of love. I had the resilience of youth upon which to fall when Mother died…

I had Jack to lean upon,

poor Jack only had me.

It took me almost thirty years to learn how to cry without feeling ashamed.

on reading through them some time later, he felt that they might well be of some help to others who were similarly afflicted with the turmoil of thought and feeling which grief forces upon us.

her death was delayed long enough for him to grow to love her so completely that she filled his world as the greatest gift that God had ever given him, and then she died and left him alone in a place that her presence in his life had created for him.

For further reading,

I recommend

‘Jack: C.S. Lewis and His Times’


George Sayer (Harper & Row, 1988; Crossway Books) as the best available biography of C.S. Lewis;

Lyle Dorsett’s biography of my mother,

‘And God Came In’

(Macmillan, 1983);


a viewpoint of our family life, my own book <Douglas H. Gresham>,

‘Lenten Lands’

(Macmillan, 1988; HarperSanFrancisco, 1994).”

Chapter One:

“… There is a sort of invisible blanket between the world and me. I find it hard to take in what anyone says.

Yet, I want others to be about me.

If only they would talk to one another and not to me.

I loathe the slightest effort. Not only writing but even reading a letter is too much.

It is easy to see why the lonely become untidy, finally dirty and disgusting.

We both knew we wanted something besides one another – quite a different kind of something, a quite different kind of want.

Her absence is like the sky,

spread over everything.

It is incredible how much happiness, even how much gaiety, we sometimes had together after all hope was gone. How long, how tranquilly, how nourishingly, we talked together that last night!

Even nature isn’t such a clown as that. She never plays exactly the same tune twice.

Chapter two:

Only a real risk tests the reality of a belief.

I know that the thing I want is exactly the thing I can never get.

all that stuff about family reunions ‘on the further shore,’ pictured in entirely earthly terms. But that is all unscriptural, all out of bad hymns and lithographs. There’s not a word of it in the Bible. And it rings false. We KNOW it couldn’t be like that. Reality never repeats. The exact same thing is never taken away and given back. How well the spiritualists bait their hook! ‘Things on this side are not so different after all.’

Why do I make room in my mind for such filth and nonsense? Do I hope that if feeling disguises itself as thought I shall feel less? …

And grief still feels like fear. Perhaps, more strictly, like suspense. Or like waiting; just hanging about waiting for something to happen. …

It doesn’t seem worth starting anything. I can’t settle down.

Chapter Three:

Just this apathy, this dead flatness? Will there come a time when I no longer ask why the world is like a mean street, because I shall take the squalor as normal?

Grief is like a bomber circling round and dropping its bombs each time the circle brings it overhead; physical pain is like the steady barrage on a trench in World War One, hours of it with no let-up for a moment. Thought is never static, pain often is.

God has not been trying an experiment on my faith or love in order to find out their quality. He knew it already. It was I who didn’t.

The less I mourn her the nearer I seem to her.

Chapter four:

Sorrow, however, turns out to be not a state but a process.

I do all the walking I can, for I’d be a fool to go to bed not tired.

Praise is the mode of love which always has some element of joy in it.

The sense that some shattering and disarming simplicity is the real answer.

Attention is an act of will.”


“<>” mark my comments


I got it from the library,

inter-library loan.

It was donated by the Schlanker Funeral Home in April 2014 to the Montgomery City Public Library in Montgomery City, Missouri.

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on respect

yesterday I was reading a new book (It made me cry more than once.)
my brother was chatty…


he asked some questions about my past…
I think that’s what led to me sharing some of the below with an online Bible-study group today.
The question of the day after our reading in Ecclesiastes was about respect:
“I was hired once to a job & was told by one of my co-workers that she didn’t think I should have been hired…
3 years later, she became my boss.
She tried to fire me at least 4-5 times over the next 10+ years.
It was quite a time in my life,


I certainly grew closer to the Lord.
I memorized scripture when I could not sleep at night.
I listened to scriptures while I walked before work, during breaks and after the day ended.
I listened to the Word while ironing, cooking, gardening and mowing the lawn.
I don’t think I would have survived without it.
Almost EVERY evaluation was her pushing me to quit – or – threatening to fire me.
It was exhausting, but thru it all, I ‘liked’ her – strange, I know,

I think it was God helping me submit in the face of adversity.
I respected her.
I worked hard, often 12-14 hour days.
I found peace in the beauty God provided all around me… flowers & clouds, sunsets & sunrises… etc.
I stayed involved in church, participated in small groups and mission trips… volunteered – all of it helped.
I asked God to let me be at home more, and He showed me financially how to do it.
I saved. I humbled myself.
After several more years, I was ‘released’ from the job after God showed me what He wanted me to do next.
I felt underqualified for the next step,


I was willing.
That was almost 5 years ago, and now I get to stay home most days.
God is faithful.
Our desires, I believe are His desires.
Ever since I was a little girl, I wanted to be a house-wife,
I got good grades, so college was a ‘go’ since I was on scholarship…
jobs came regularly, sometimes I worked up to #6 jobs at a time. Now I have #2.
God is faithful.”


I also shared about how submitting & respecting my hubby has led to MANY answered prayers.


God is faithful.

Lamentations 3:22-23

22 The faithful love of the Lord never ends!
    His mercies never cease.
23 Great is his faithfulness;
    his mercies begin afresh each morning.

New Living Translation (NLT)

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On my 1st encounter with God

For the last several months, I have been participating in an online Bible study that a lady at my husband’s church invited me to attend. At first I just read it… it led to me WANTING to read the Bible again, EVERY DAY. Praise God. Since getting married, I have not been as disciplined.

Then the original leader asked another lady from church to take the study over, and I was even more engrossed in the words on the screen. People shared daily what God was showing them, and it was deep.

This new leader asked me over for lunch, and I went…

the year before when my husband 1st met her at church, he liked her instantly, and oddly said as she walked away, “you can be her friend.” He had never said anything like this in all the years I had known him, so I felt it was significant. We had talked as a couple with her and her husband shortly after, and they too seemed to be open to a connection. I was happy for the lunch-invite. I do better one-on-one… not in groups.

For the current study, another member of my husband’s church is now leading the group. She is one of those amazing women who is ALL female: loving & encouraging, kind & gentle… always, AND she home-schools. She has a loving-husband that is gentle & kind, super hard-working, and a leader to his children.

She reached out to me previously after learning about my 1st miscarriage. She invited me over – loved on me in many ways… shared food & drink, asked & listened… shared her own experiences & losses. Then invited my husband to join me, for dinner & a movie with their family that same evening.

It helped. It all helped. All of them… each step of the way.

Acceptance in a new place.

Being let into people’s lives & hearts, some of which I have never even met.

Hearing & reading God moving in the lives around me… answering prayers. He is an awesome God!

Today, I’m catching up on my Facebook Bible-study group, reading several days worth of entries as the week was full, and I was gone for most of it. I tried reading some of the posts while I was at the hospital,


that didn’t work.

Home. I needed to read it while I am home. Peaceful, quiet home.


God still works that way.


I wrote this several days ago, but it would not post on WordPress… then when I went back to my draft a few days later, I had lost over 900 words of my original post…


here’s what I wrote on Facebook on the 17th:

My 1st encounter w/God – I had an experience at kid’s camp one summer when I was 12 that forever changed me. I had already asked God into my heart, I had already been baptized in water… but this was different. I remember feeling happier than I had ever felt before… dancing with the other children – feeling free & weightless. I had already lost all but one grandparent by the time I was 10, and grade-school was a fierce-place… full of bullies & discrimination based on wealth. Middle-school was unpleasant, full of hormones & unkind words to any who didn’t fit into the herd… so this was refreshing to say the least. I had not particularly liked the camp or activities (only time & fellowship with the girls from church) until that night, when I asked God a question, and He opened my eyes. Then a few hours later, after the nightly sermon, I was angry… again, but He met me at my obedience … even though I didn’t want to obey… even with my friends from church encouraging me.

Humbling yourself is never easy.

Repeating the same thing… night after night is not easy for me either,

but God

met me in the aisle.

After being given the beautiful gift of speaking in tongues & dancing with other camp-attendees, I wanted some alone time with God. My Mom found me in the kids’ dorm – checked on me as the rest of the camp was still praising God. .. Pentecostals can go for hours. :) She prayed with me, then left me to seek God alone as I had desired.

My favorite times with God are still my alone times with Him. He is so loving & kind, gentle & strong, protective & encouraging. I cannot imagine life without Him.”


Interesting enough,

But God” was on my cousin’s T-shirt earlier this month. She had gotten it at a gospel concert,


a week or so later I found it in scripture:

Ephesians 2:4 – NLT: “Made Alive with Christ

2 Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins. 2 You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil—the commander of the powers in the unseen world.[a] He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. 3 All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else.

4 But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, 5 that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!) 6 For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus. 7 So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus.

8 God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. 9 Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. 10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

Oneness and Peace in Christ ”


I LOVE how God’s timing is perfect in ALL things. This month has been VERY interesting, and “His grace & kindness toward us” has been most beautiful. He is an AWESOME God!




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