Can The Christian Band Mercy Me Get Any Better?

OH YES THEY CAN!  Their new album, Lifer, is amazing, incredible and so uplifting!  Having a bad day? Then go to YouTube and listen to the audio versions, or better yet go to iTunes and just buy it.  I pre-ordered Lifer and received teaser songs one at a time and then bam! The whole album.

Most of the time, when I get a new album, there are maybe 5 or 6 songs I really like.  Rarely do I like all of the songs on an album.  Lifer is one album that I love all of the songs.

The song “Even If” is a good reminder that Pastors, Praise Leaders, and Church teachers, get up on stage every Sunday and lift us up.  It does not matter what has been happening in their lives or the struggles they may be going through.  Have you looked at your Pastor as a human being with the same temptations as the rest of us fallen beings? We are men and women, male and female traveling through this time together for God’s reason.

OK, I won’t tease you too much.  The song I am putting on my site is called “Grace Got You.”  Now, I am going to stop writing so I can start dancing to the song.

God Bless You!

 

Westminster Terror Attack (You Go British Prime Minister, Theresa May!)

Accolades to British Prime Minister Theresa May after the Westminster attack on March 22.  She is a class act with a firm resolute about how her country will respond to terror.

“We will move forward together. Never giving in to terror. And never allowing the voices of hate and evil to drive us apart.”

And isn’t that all terror can do anyway is to divide a country? Because to divide is to conquer, at least that is how they view it. But what could happen if the countries under attack from terror come together? Not only the leaders, but the people. We are the ones who have the eyes, and the ears on the streets of our countries. We are the ones who can prepare and be aware when faced with an attack, to counter and defeat this evil! There are around 184,000 terrorists world-wide, and we have 325,838,705 Americans, 64,938,716 French, and 65,511,098 Great Britain citizens.

(If you want to view population by country…http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/population-by-country/)

As Christians, God has given us some strong promises concerning our enemies.  We need to know them, to pray them, and to follow God’s will. Do you not think that by standing with God, any evil can be defeated? I do.

God tells us, “no weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and this is their vindication from me,” declares the LORD. Isaiah 54:17

 

 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”               2 Timothy 1:7

If we read God words and believe God’s words, change will happen!

Another impressive statement by British Prime Minister Theresa May, which I feel is a truthful representation of the attack.

“The location of this attack was no accident. The terrorists chose to strike at the heart of our Capital City, where people of all nationalities, religions and cultures come together to celebrate the values of liberty, democracy and freedom of speech.   These streets of Westminster – home to the world’s oldest Parliament – are engrained with a spirit of freedom that echoes in some of the furthest corners of the globe. And the values our Parliament represents – democracy, freedom, human rights, the rule of law – command the admiration and respect of free people everywhere.   That is why it is a target for those who reject those values.   But let me make it clear today, as I have had cause to do before: any attempt to defeat those values through violence and terror is doomed to failure.”

Democracy, freedom, human rights and the rule of law are the values which America was established.  We have come too far and fight hard every day to maintain theses values, to allow a spirit of terror defeat us!

Remember fighting terrorism is first being alert of your surroundings and reporting anything which looks out-of-place.  Even if it turns out to be a goose chase, because one of those times the person or situation might be the real deal.

God Bless You!

God Bless Great Britain!

God Bless America!

HAPPY 25TH ANNIVERSARY DISNEY LAND PARIS!

I love the travel page on my site One Retail Therapy (oneretailtherapy.com)! We have some of the best travel companies with amazing offers, on the internet! If you are single and don’t want to do bars and dating sites, we have a travel company just for singles. Some of the companies are specific to one area like Disney World, Orlando, or even Israel.

There is one company which has adventures going on around the world almost 24/7. The company is called ISANGO. They keep me updated with what is trending in the world of travel each week.  And that is how I found out Disneyland Paris is having its’ 25th Anniversary.  Wow, if Walt Disney could see his dream now!

You know I read somewhere, Walt bankrupted 7 times and he would not sell his mouse design.  Even when his future outlook was pretty bleak. I guess you know which design I am talking about. Yep, Mickey Mouse himself.

When I think about Walt Disney, I think about a dreamer and his perseverance. To all of us dreamers, he is an inspiration in never giving up on a dream! I wonder if Walt envisioned his company becoming the mega media outlet it is today?  Maybe that is why I love Disney World so much, because it is full of magic and dreams which just keep on blossoming.  Dreams that were and are achieved.

I believe God gives us dreams and buries them within our hearts.  Some people live out their dreams as teachers, doctors, pastors, and artists.  While others forget their dreams and buy into the world’s declared dreams they should do instead.  And don’t fool yourself into thinking that if a dream is from God, it will be achieved over night.  Sometimes God gives us dreams to teach us things like perseverance, patience, kindness, and respect along the way.

What is your dream?  Maybe a trip to Disneyland Paris for their 25th anniversary? Or maybe a life changing adventure to a third world country to assist them with their every day difficulties and share your knowledge with them.

Whatever your dream is, keep pursuing it! Maybe you will be the next Walt Disney, Mother Teresa, or Steve Jobs.

God Bless You!

Baby Jesus and Moving (Just Bobbin and Weaving My Head)

Well, I finally found my book on Anne, Jesus’ grandmother.  I was sure I packed it in one of the office boxes, but I could not find the book.  Must have been bobbin and weaving my head in the wrong direction, because my husband looked into the box and pulled the book right out.  Isn’t it always that way.

Last night I began reading the book on Anne again.  In this section she talked about how the people must have felt when they held baby Jesus.  We parents know exactly what new baby love feels like.  It comes with a multitude of emotions triggered by smells, sounds, and snuggles.

The author described a feeling of greatness and love that was overwhelming to the point of  dropping them to their knees. Because I have been blessed to have been in the presence of Jesus, I have my mere human description.  I wrote the next paragraph in an earlier blog post called, “The Sweet Fragrance of Love.”

The shirt smelled fragrant, but not overpowering; warm, gentle, pleasing, and full of love.  The next breath I breathed deeply into my lungs.  My body was filled with the warmth and love of the fragrance. I was so happy, with a happiness that comes from another dimension.  And I knew it was Jesus!

Yes, I know what it feels like to be in Jesus’ presence, but to have held Him as a baby…my mind cannot fathom the immense feelings that would pulsate through my body.  Love, greatness, peace, joy and words our English language does not contain would be some of the descriptions. And the fragrance…a baby is soft, and powdery but this would be a scent designed by the angels, which would fill your body, mind, and soul. A scent never known to man, only made for our Savior.

In 2 Corinthians 2:15, we are told, “For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are saved and those who are perishing.”

Now I am overwhelmed! Jesus made my own aroma so good that I smell like Christ to God.  And you and everyone else too, even those who are not saved.  Love?  No, we do not have a human word to describe this kind of emotion.

Jesus’ time as a baby is gone and we don’t have the opportunity to hold Him.  But Jesus takes every moment we give Him to hold us!  Don’t have a little time for Jesus today?

God Bless You!

God Bless America!

 

“My Ears Had Heard of You, But Now My Eyes Have Seen You.”

The above quote is from the very end of the  book of Job in the bible.  If anyone knew about sitting in ashes with boils all over his body, it was Job.  If anyone knew what it was like to lose his entire fortune, it was Job. If anyone knew what it was like to lose his children to death, it was Job. For Job lost everything and I mean every little piece of scrap of life, except the breath of life which he breathed.

Been there? Everything in your world on a direct collision course with disaster? And you can not figure out how, what, and when it all began.  Now you are trapped in this never-ending downward spiral, with the exit sign from above growing dimmer and dimmer.

Desolate, despair has covered your body with its’ thick woolen coat.  The weight dragging your shoulders and body into a curved “C.” Your legs unable to lift one more time for only one more step.

And you are beyond scared.

I have been there, not quite as low as Job though. I have endured a type of sores and my physical body racked with disease.   Finances, personal life, you name it…seen those in the ash can too. Knowing Job had gone through similar circumstances, I would read the book of Job over and over again during this time.  Because Job survived! He rose from the ashes and was whole again. I needed, I wanted to rise from the ashes…I wanted to be whole again!

Where was the darn answer!

“My ears had heard of You, but now my eyes have seen You.”

Right there in Job 42:5.

As Christians we go to church and listen to sermons.  We attend bible studies and read Christian author’s books on self-improvement.  Our ears are tuned to Christian music and radio stations. Always searching for the Christian golden ring to life. Prepared to reach out and snatch it from its teasing holding post. And then clasp the ring to our chest and release a sign of relief from our throats.

And through these times of searching, I have heard a lot of words concerning my Christian faith, my God, my Jesus, my Holy Spirit. But when I truly saw God for first time, I realized I had been searching in vain for a God which did not exist. A kind of wizardly God.

My God is Father.

The God I see is not one which I have to do a special dance for or recite special words, to receive His grace. He loves me. God loves me! And even though I hear about Him in church, bible studies, books, and music; these are only shadows of resemblances of my God.

For when I am exhausted from this world, I only have to crawl up into His righteous arms.  And He cradles me; my sick body, mind, and soul.  The rhythm of His love soothes my wearied, worried self.  I am safe and I am loved more than can be told to me in the words of man.

This is my God.

So, for today, rise from the ashes of defeat.  Close your ears and open your eyes. Watch closely and you too will see my God…your God…our God!

 

God Bless You!

God Bless America!

Our Allies Are Spying on Us, Michael Flynn Communicated With A Russian, And President Trump Has Conflicts of Interests…Oh MY!

I was surprised to find myself unable to read an entire Newsweek article concerning the one time communication between Michael Flynn and a Russian official based here in the United States. The article pointedly moved on to discuss the fact that our European allies had intercepted conversations and documents concerning President Trump.

These unseen documents and unheard conversations concerned his relationship with Russia, his business alliances, and our Nato allies.  All expertly woven together to suggest our Allies are apprehensive about our country’s ability to honor our agreements. And that there could be a conflict of interest for President Trump, which would impede his ability to run the country.

As I tried to digest the excessive amount of information at one sitting, I found myself a little too stuffed.  Hence the reflux which I am still suffering from now, while trying to swallow all of the innuendoes;  or as the reality show housewives would say…throwing some shade.  This article had enough shade to cause a chill to fill the air.

Now I do understand the NATO alliance and that we are joined at the hip with these other countries, which insures peace for each of us. Or so they say. But, are we really allies when we spy on each other and then disclose the information found to the world? Where is the trust?  I believe a reclassification of terms is called for here and instead of allies the word should be frenemies! The definition would include this statement, “We cover your rear end, if it benefits our rear end.”

Then I came to the one sentence in the article which hammered my nerve of disgust and ceased my reading! Here it is for you…

“These sources spoke on condition that they not be identified because they were not formally authorized to disclose the information.”

Really?

If you have not been formally authorized to disclose the information isn’t that the same as keep your mouth shut!

Or was this one of those permission granted to aid the start of whispers of mistrust, with cables connected to jumpstart the rumor mill and initiate fear?

No wonder we don’t believe journalists any more. Because they appear more like a brood of witches stirring the cauldron  and cackling at their immense talent to blow smoke in our eyes.

Well, I have a warning label for the articles where the sources have to remain anonymous.

“Be careful little eyes what you see, it’s the second glance that ties your hands as darkness pulls the strings.”

The above quote is from the song called “Slow Fade” by Casting Crowns.  “Slow Fade” is about infidelity between a couple, but it could just as easily be infidelity between countries and anonymous sources.

Because countries never crumble in a day! And American Journalists have taken the black and white of journalism, and turned it into grey.  (More paraphrasing from the song.)

There is only one who will never lie to us, never cheat on us, whisper secrets to others concerning us, and always will have our back…God.

If you are concerned about the abundance of information coming from anonymous sources concerning our country, close your eyes and your ears.  Turn completely to God and pray.  Ask for revelation and ask Him to show you what you need to do to alleviate your fears! Because God’s answers are always true and always perfect.

I will leave you with the lyrics to “Slow Fade.”

As always…

God Bless You!

God Bless America!

 

Slow Fade by Casting Crowns

Be careful little eyes what you see
It’s the second glance that ties your hands
As darkness pulls the strings
Be careful little feet where you go
For it’s the little feet behind you
That are sure to follow

It’s a slow fade
When you give yourself away
It’s a slow fade
When black and white have turned to gray

Thoughts invade, choice is made,
A price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day
It’s a slow fade, it’s a slow fade

Be careful little ears what you hear
When flattery leads to compromise,
The end is always near
Be careful little lips what you say
For empty words and promises
Lead broken hearts astray

It’s a slow fade
When you give yourself away
It’s a slow fade
When black and white have turned to gray

Thoughts invade, choice is made,
A price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day

The journey from your mind to your hands
Is shorter than you’re thinking
Be careful if you think you stand
You just might be sinking

It’s a slow fade
When you give yourself away
It’s a slow fade
When black and white have turned to gray
Thoughts invade, choice is made,
A price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day
Daddies never crumble in a day
Families never crumble in a day

Oh be careful little eyes what see
Oh be careful little eyes what you see
For the Father up above is looking down in love
Oh be careful little eyes what you see

 

 

God’s Got This, Mom!

Being a grandparent myself, I am excited to learn about Jesus’ grandparents from “The Book of Anne!”  It is only logical that if Jesus had human parents, they must have come from somewhere, so Jesus should have grandparents.

Mary’s mother and father, (and Jesus’ grandparents) are Anne and Joachim, successful Galilean farmers.  Anne was Joachim’s second wife and Mary’s mother.  No, he did not have a harem.  Their whole existence revolved around God and His word.  And from the moment you read about them, you instantly know they are a warm, loving couple. Who intentionally raised their own children to know and obey their living God.

After reading about Anne, Joachim, and Mary, I can see why God would choose them for Jesus.  Also, we know why God chose Joseph, because his blood line was royal, Kind David royal.  And Joseph was a good man, who also lived, worked, and played according to the Jewish religion.  Perfect for Mary! God knew this would be the absolute environment for our Savior.

The point at which I have stopped reading, shows Mary and Joseph preparing for their travels to Bethlehem.  Anne has arrived and she is horrified that Mary is planning on going!  The baby is due at any time and she believes this could be dangerous for both Mary and the child.  Mary is calm, and self-assured, and basically tells Anne;

“Gods got this, mom.”

Yes, Anne raised Mary to be certain of God and His promises.  And, Mary is following through with what she has been taught.  I am sure her visits from the angel Gabriel and God keeping her in the loop of things, (so to speak) provided her with a knowing courage.

But I can relate as a grandmother.

I remember before each of our grandchildren were born, I felt a grip of fear.  The main reason was because we parents are told we are to take care of our children.  And I was not in the delivery room to make sure the doctor and nurses were doing the delivery right.  This was my baby girl, who was about to have her own baby and the birth had to be a c-section.

My daughter told us of the fear that washed over her, as her husband went out to tell the families about the change of plans.  She prayed to God and within the very next moment she was filled with peace.  Everything was going to be fine for her and the baby.

“Gods got this, mom.”

Later, we found out that if it had not been for the c-section, our first granddaughter would not have made it.  The cord was dangerously wrapped around her neck.  To go through the birth canal would have strangled her to death.

“Gods got this mom.”

How many times do we tell our children to have unwavering faith in God?  But then yank it away when it concerns us.  I know I do.

If only we could borrow a little of Mary’s courage from time to time and tell ourselves…

“God’s got this!”

 

God Bless You!

God Bless America!