Friday, August 31, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 280

I am getting this praise out a little later than I normally do. I have been looking into career avenues to take and got hooked on a website that may be an answer to prayer. Needless to say, I was so wrapped up in it this morning that I left the house for work and realized I hadn't done my praise. It's becoming clear that God is calling me to be a Christian Counselor. The schooling will be more extensive but in the end I believe this is the road the Lord is steering me to. Still so much to research and figure out but I keep remembering my time with my sister and Mom in San Anotonio earlier this year and how with the Lord's help I helped them get pasted some relationship issues with each other. I had told them I was trying to figure out what to do with my life in terms of a career and my sister asked if I had considered going to seminary.  On my drive to work this morning, the Lord put this all in the forefront of my mind and I laughed and thought the answer had already been there right in front of me but I think like Jonah I have been not obeying.  For me it was more because I don't feel completely confident in my capabilities to do this but I am learning from my research that God will equip me with what he is calling for me and so I need to let go of that fear and committ to the schooling, time-committment and cost and let the Lord figure out all the logistics. Thanks be to God for stealing away the tent that I have been in so I can see the bigger picture of his calling.
1 Corinthians 13:12 Now we see only reflections in a mirror... but then e shall be seeing face to face.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 279

I have been hearing that phrase "Go for it" alot lately because of my researching and talking to people about what I am considering doing with going back to school.  My son was the latest person to encourage me. I explained to him the logistics of the two programs for medical assisting that I have looked into and discussed how it might affect him with me in school possibly 4-5 nights a week for a year to a year and half. It was good to have his support. Those encouraging words from people are like gold, so so precious! Thank you to those people that encourage and support others in all they do.
1 Thesselonians 5:11 Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 278

A co-worker friend took me to a beauty supply shop that is for licenced people only so I could look at getting some color stuff for my hair. Most of the women at my work utilize this way to save some money by doing it themselves but with the same product that the professional hair people will use. I haven't been able to get to my hairdresser since March and had my hubbie do a boxed color on my hair which of course lasts all of two weeks or so. So as the product I was purchasing was added to the counter, I was expecting a higher total price and was pleasantly surprised by the low cost and that was with shampoo and conditioner as well. So this weekend, I will ask for my hubbie to help do my hair. It's pretty much do it or pay for it kind of option. It actually is a good bonding experience for us and may be a good time to talk about my desire to go back to school to be a biblical counselor. I am really feeling that is where God is leading me. But back to the main point, I am thankful for God's help with finances. I have been feeling the pinch and asked for the Lord's help in finding ways to save money or make more money. It's not about the gray hair. That doesn't bother me anymore. Its about how you feel and if it makes you feel better to color your hair and you have the means than go for it.
Phillipians 4:19 And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 277

I have been reading a book called Faith of Our Fathers. It is a book in a series on stories about the Kings of the Old Testament. This book is about Manasseh. From my reading of the bible, I knew from the get-go as I began this book that Manasseh was a king who did evil in the eyes of the Lord. I found the two entries in the bible about Manasseh and was first off glad to see the writers thus far have followed what is in the bible but the amazing part is all the story around what's in the bible. Now this is fictional so they made it up, but it really makes you think of how bad or evil a person is but what is the story behind all that sin. What got them to that place? In this case, the writers make him out to be envious and jealous of his boyhood friend and family and even though he grew up learning the Torah the seeds of this envy and jealousy had been in him and all it took was the right corrupt person to enter his life that played up to this part of him and led him away from God and to so much sin. It makes me think of how careful we need to be when it comes to the people we meet and the things they say to us. We have to call on wisdom and discernment from God to help us on our journey and make sure are path is straight to God. Wisdom, discernment and clear guidance on what my next step in life is has been my goal. Despite the pros and cons that I am putting together of the various carreer avenues I can take, I want to take the one God wants me to take. What is he calling me to? Have you wondered what next? Only God knows what is the best and right place for us to go. Seek and you will find.
2 Chronicles 33: 1-2 Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem fify-fve years. He did evil in the eyes of the Lord, following the detestable practices of the nations the Lord had driven out before the Israelistes.

Monday, August 27, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 276

I really liked what our pastor said in his sermon yesterday. He said Jesus had a mission statement: Seek and save what is lost. As followers of Christ, we have this as our mission statement as well. Our pastor is leading our church to really take the gospel out of the church and to where the people are. A church can't wait around for people to come to it. You have to go out and be where the people are and communicate in a way that they will be responsive to. It's exciting to see our church breaking free from the church of our past that hasn't been working and really work at doing what Christ wants us to do. Jesus didn't wait for people to come to him. He traveled all over going to the people. I am thankful to our pastor who will help lead this church to take the gospel to the people.
Ezekiel 24:12 As a shepherd looks after his scattered flock when he is with them, so will I look after my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places where they were scattered on a day of clouds and darkness.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 275

I had a great lunch and vintage shopping time with my sister-in-law yesterday. We talked about our future plans for our working careers and I  felt a sense of freedom after realizing I am not the only one who is getting older and still hasn't figured out what they want to do. I have had a dream to be a counselor and even pursued it slightly about a year ago but was deterred by the time and money it would take. My sister-in-law knows a wonderful counselor who didn't go back to school for it until she was 50. Okay so I have just a few years before I hit that but it made me feel like you are never too old to pursue a dream. So, I will be doing the pros and cons of both medical assisting schooling and counselor schooling and keep praying for God to lead me down the path he wants me to go. I am grateful for a friend like my sister-in-law that I can talk with. Thank you Lord for using the family and friends in our lives to help us find the clear path you want us to take.
Proverbs 4: 18-19 But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn,
which shines brighter and brighter until full day.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 274

I have heard this phrase lately in a couple of places, "emontional constipated". I heard it again last evening while watching a movie called A Little Bit of Heaven. The movie was about a young woman who is not interested in being in a "love" relationship. She ends up getting diagnosed with colon cancer and her diagnosis is not good. She ends up falling for her doctor and finally admits that she loves him.  She is now not afraid to love and from there shares her feelings with all her loved ones including the very "emotionally constipated" father. In the end, she wraps everything up in her life with love and all her loved ones are there with her when she dies. Definitely need a box of Kleenex when watching this movie. It was the greatest reminder that in our lives it is not about the things we accumulate, the accomplishments and successes we make but about how we loved. There is a new song on the radio I have heard lately with the words, "I wanna live like there's no tomorrow Lord, like I'm on borrowed time. It's good to be alive." We have all seen these kinds of movies or real-life stories in which a person is dying but that is when they are truly living. Living without fear, without worry but just loving every moment and every person. I want to live out the words in this song and live like there's no tomorrow.
 Colosians 3: 12-14 Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.

Friday, August 24, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 273

My first meeting with a college about becoming a medical assitant was great. I was so very impressed with the school and the person whom I was meeting with. By the end of our time together, I was feeling almost giddy with excitement and she could tell I was getting excited about the possiblities. Scheduling the program into my life will be the biggest hurdle to conquer. The starter class would be a month of M-F classes from 6-10pm after which I could switch to either the 6am-10am block of classes or the 10am-2pm block of classes or stay with the evening block. I can't imagine doing M-F classes in the evening for 9 months but I might be able to arrange my work schedule around the other blocks but may have to shave off an hour or so of work time. At this point I am keeping an open mind and look forward to meeting with another school next week to see what their program and school are like. I am praying a lot for God to give me a clear answer on the direction I should take and will wait for His answer. Does all this mean that my ministry is going by the wayside? No, but I will probably have to wait to try to get a faithbooking bible study group going. In the meantime, I will keep working on my ideas for writing a faithbooking bible study that will be for parents to do with their kids. Of course, this praise challenge will continue until Thanksgiving and than I will start a new challenge for the year that will help build-up my faith and relationship with the Lord and being encouraging to others. Only God knows our future and I am just praying he guides me along the way.
Proverbs 3:6 In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 272

Praising God for the opportunities available to make a change in the course of my working life. I have been researching the possiblity of making a carrer change into the medical field as a  medical assistant. The job prospects are good and are projected to grow by 38% by 2018. The median salary in my town could be a  little better but its more than I make now. It will probably cost me $12,000. for schooling plus more for the incidentals like books and testing fees to become officially certified. But there are more learning and skills that can be added to your belt to make your resume really look good and get you a higher paying position. The job itself is a mix of working with people on your feet and administrative stuff at a desk which I think would be a good fit for my body. Helping people is a plus as its one of the small side benefits of my current job but as a medical assistant I would be helping a lot more people and in a healthy way not just in a financial businessy way like I do with alarm companies now. I am starting to meet with colleges to get some idea about the programs offered so not sure at this point what will happen but I am thankful to God that I even have this kind of freedom to change what I am doing as work for my life. I keep praying for guidance and for God to put me where he wants me to be. Hopefully your job gives you a good feeling of success, confidence, joy without any negative side affects like pain, frustration, anger, resentment, discouragement. If so, be proactive in praying and seeking out a change led by God and in the meantime keep your focus on Him.
Ephesians 6:6 Work hard, but not just to please your masters when they are watching. As slaves of Christ, do the will of God with all your heart. Work with enthusiasm, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 271

My daughter had a homework assignment to read a story and than ask us our opinion on who should go to jail. The story in a nutshell was about a man whose wife is sick and in need of medicine. He goes to an apothocary to get medicine but does not have enough money. He asks if he could give him what he has, take the medicine and pay the rest when he gets it but the apothocary says no. He goes home and later goes out and breaks into the apothcary's place and takes the medicine his wife needs. Who should go to jail? Well my son and I said the obvious answer and went with the law. The man stole the medicine that is breaking the law. What the apothocary did wasn't breaking the law it just was an uncompassionate choice. My daughter who was totally into this said well maybe the woman should go to jail for getting sick. NO-NO-NO I told her. You don't go out and ask a virus to make you sick. The woman didn't have any choice in getting sick. So do you see where I am going with this? Some choices aren't against any standard law or against the Ten Commandments and some choices are but no matter what the choices are, there are consequences. Though the apothocary's choice didn't directly break any law it spurred another man to make a choice to break a law. The bible tells us that if there is something that may cause our brothers or sisters to sin than we should not do whatever may cause the other to sin. Each choice we make, each action we take, each word we say can be that "whatever" that may cause another to make the choice to sin. I am thankful for this homework lesson that came home for my daughter that brought up this bible truth. May the words and actions I take today be only loving and kind and not cause another to make the choice of sinning. Amen.
1Corinthians 8:13 Therefore, if food makes my brother stumble, I will never eat meat, lest I make my brother stumble.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 270

The dark veil of hormone driven thinking is still with me. It's not usually so lengthy so hears to hoping it ends today. Despite my black mood, I was very excited to see my new shipment of Medifast meals arrive. I got some new things to try like the soft-baked cookie and some cheese puffs. So my hope is being strengthened. Our hope can be strengthend in Christ through the Word, through being with our Christian brothers and sisters and worship. When I am in these kinds of dark hormone driven days, I like to have something good to focus on. I got a book at the library that is one in a series of books from the AD Chronicles by Brodie and Brock Thoene. This one was called the Twelfth Prophecy and about the story of Abigail, the Samaratan woman that Jesus speaks to at the well of Jacob. The Word tells us that Jesus asks her for a drink of water from the well which was a big No-No in that world. Jews and Samaratan's did not like each other and men did not talk to women they did not know. Abigail was indeed surprised by Jesus' request but complied and ended up in a conversation with him that led to her belief and her spreading the news of Jesus to all the Samaratan's she knew. This fictional story fills in the background of this woman who was married 5 times and shunned by her community because of her sins. The theme was all about the hope we have in the living water we have in Jesus. It was exactly what I needed to help me through my black mood the last couple of days. Thank you Lord for this tale that was woven around your Word.
Jesus, tired out by his journey, was sitting by the well. It was about noon.
A Samaritan woman came to draw water,
and Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.”
The Samaritan woman said to him,
“How is it that you, a Jew, ask a drink of me, a woman of Samaria?”
Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God,
and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’
you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.”
The woman said to him, “Sir, you have no bucket, and the well is deep.
Where do you get that living water?
Are you greater than our ancestor Jacob, who gave us the well?”
Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again,
but those who drink of the water that I will give them, will never be thirsty.
The water that I will give will become in them
 a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.”
The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water,
so that I may never be thirsty or have to keep coming here to draw water.”
Jesus said to her, “ Go, call you husband, and come back.”
The woman answered him, “I have no husband.”
Jesus said to her, “You are right in saying, ‘I have no husband’;
for you have had five husbands, and the one you have now is not your husband.
What you have said is true!”
The woman said to him, “Sir, I see that you are a prophet.
Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain,
but you say that the place where people must worship is in Jerusalem.”
Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe me,
the hour is coming when you will worship God
neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem.
You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know,
for salvation is from the Jews.
But the hour is coming and is now here,
when the true worshipers will worship God in spirit and in truth.
God is spirit, and those who worship God must worship in spirit and in truth.”
The woman said to him, “I know that Messiah is coming.
When he comes, he will proclaim all things to us.”
Jesus said to her, “I am the one.”
 John 4: 6-23

Monday, August 20, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 269

My eating program has been in slow-mode the last two weeks and I was day after day starting to feel more and more discouraged and tempted to eat something I shouldn't have. Well, the day finally came on Saturday afternoon. With no more crunchy meals in my Medifast stash and having a very strong desire for crunch, I ended up cheating and pulled out a bag of baked pita chips and pigged out as I watched an afternoon chick flick. Unfortunately, a lot of this is hormone driven as I have been super crabby, falling asleep when I should be awake and not sleeping when I should be sleeping. So, if this comes across wrong in any way, it's because I am need of some caffiene. So Sunday morning I go to get on the scale and weigh myself for the day as I do everyday. I half expected it to be up or at the very least the same as it has been all week long but to my delighted surprise I lost a pound and made it down into the 150's. Haven't seen those 150 numbers in quite a while so it felt amazingly good. Unfortunatley, my cheating bout didn't end as my hormones are still wreaking havoc and I raided the last bit of what was left in the pita chip bag after having lunch with a little avocado and some fresca cheese and a few tortilla chips. In any case, even if the drop to the 150's may be brief at least I know it can happen. I needed a little hope to get me through these hormonally driven dark days. This whole situation reminds me very much of how it is with our sins. Though we are trying not to sin, we may have those days where things are stacked against us and pushing us to sin more and more until we finally do. The great thing is that like I got on that scale and saw hope, we have the hope of Jesus every morning when we wake up to start a fresh day and every night when we go to bed discouraged, sad and guilty, Jesus is right there for us to say "please forgive me". Hope is alive and waiting for you. Just keep seeking...and praying...and looking and listening for Him.
Romans 12:12  Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 268

My hubbie and son went off together with a friend of my hubbies from college to enjoy lunch and a movie. They went to the new Sushi/Habachi place near us for lunch. My son ended up trying out some sushi with salmon eggs on top among other things. It was great to hear about it all when they came back. They apparently had a great bonding time. Way, way back when my son was just a toddler I read a parenting book that said that boys need to have a "tribe". You want to encourage and get them into groups of other boys and men where they can bond and learn from each other. Of course, you want men who set good examples and are on a straight path. I have prayed for that and have seen it happen in my son's life like it did yesterday. I am thankful for all the men in my son's life that can inspire, encourage and help him grow and continue on the straight path that he is on.
Proverbs 13:20 He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 267

We had an unfortunate accident in kitchen last night involving my daughter. I was busy cutting up the grilled meat so my hubbie was helping my daughter with her Top Ramen, a staple of a picky eater. My back was turned so I didn't see it happen but felt and heard it. Somehow as he was attempting to pour out some of the hot water from the Top Ramen into the sink the accident happened and hot water came out unexpectedly and poured on my daughter's hand and stomach. I immediately turned, ascertained what happend, grabbed her hand and put it under cold running water. Thankfully her shirt protected her stomach from the brunt of it but she did have a Texas-sized redness on her tummy. I applied a cold wash cloth to it to bring out the heat. She was crying and crying and crying and although it didn't appear to need to be an emergency room visit, I knew I was going to have to get her mind off it so I served her ice cream for dinner and asked my hubbie to find something to watch on TV to distract her. With some ice on her hand, the ice cream and watching the new Hotel Hell with Gordon Ramsey she finally calmed down. It was still stinging when we put her to bed so she ended up in my bed and dad got booted out to the guest room. We prayed our nightly bedtime prayers and I especially prayed for healing of her hand overnight as she slept. At around 5:30am she woke briefly and said "my hand feels better" and I replied simply "Thank you God". It could have been so much worse I had told her as I was consoling her the night before. It could have been on your face. "Oh yeah that would be a lot worse" she said. The Texas-sized redness on her tummy came down to a Hawaii-sized redness within an hour and we had fun joking about. Dad said maybe it should have gone down to Oklahoma-sized first but Faith liked the Hawaii size. I am praising God for just giving me the guidance on what to do without even having to stop to ask. Thank you Lord for healing up her hand and tummy.
John 15:7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.”

Friday, August 17, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 266

Yesterday I spoke with a co-worker who seemed to be in a bad mood. I got her to open up to me and share how she was not happy with another co-worker and how condescending she was to her. She tries to let it go, she's spoken to our office manager and my team lead about it with no results and seemed to be on the boiling point with the feelings she was having about it all. In the end of our conversation, she seemed to be in a better mood, smiling and ready to move on. I walked away and said I was glad our talking together helped get some of it off her chest. God wants us to be peacemakers and here I found myself with an opportunity to help bring some peace. In helping my friend with her feelings, I made myself feel good too. How do you love someone that you don't like or that creates stress in your life or that talks down to you? Forgiveness is the key. You have to be able to forgive what that person is or is doing or saying that creates those negative feelings in you. I have been working on that when it comes to the owner of the company I work for. And have even gone as far as praying for him. I have come some ways in overcoming my negative feelings towards him.  Would I be able to wrap my arms around him in love? No, not yet but like most things you must keep attempting to grow and progress. Do you have someone in your life that you can't find an ounce of love in you for? Take a look at forgiveness and start there.
Mark 11:25 And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”

Thursday, August 16, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 265

Yesterday was my hubbie's 40th birthday. As much as I would love to have gotten him everything he deserves, I just don't have that kind of money but God did give me a creative spirit so I came up with some ideas. The first was the 'Getting Old Sucks' bucket that I saw an example of on Pinterest. I added my own flair to it, of course. My hubbie's dream car is a Ford Mustang. What a surprise it would be to have one in your driveway?! I came up with the idea of a Ford Mustang cake and did some research and illicited the help of some friends who make cakes. They were up for the challenge. I put the cake in the driveway and had the kids lead their dad out of the house through the garage with his eyes closed up to where the cake was placed. I was doing my best to capture the moment with photos and video using both hands. Challenging! It was so fun! It was a memory that I hope he will carry with him for the rest of his life and beyond. I think the kids will remember it too since they had so much fun with it. Thank you Lord for giving us creative ways to show the ones we love how much we love them.
Genesis 1:1 In the beginging, God created the heavens and the earth...

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 264

Heading home yesterday from work, I headed over to Little Ceasar's for a pizza but found the traffic going in this direction to be horrible. You know it's bad when it takes you 10 minutes just to get through one major intersection. To make matters worse, after picking up the pizza I seemed to have hit every red light possible. My bladder was full and my stomach was hungry. It was all adding up to becoming very impatient and I was sorely tempted to eat a crazy bread and totally cheat on my eating program. But a song caught my attention about focusing on Jesus and pointed me in that direction. I am so thankful for music and all the musicians who use their gifts to bring us messages that can help us in our everyday lives, that can put our focus back to Jesus. I made it home without peeing my pants, eating a crazy bread or going crazy with verbal assaults at every light and slow car. Thank you Lord for giving us something we can grab onto that can bring our focus back to you. Thank you for giving the gift of music and lyrics that speak to our hearts and for the artists who bring them to us.
Colossians 1:11-12  May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 263

Yesterday I went to a priliminary interview for a job at my church. Because I have failed miserably in interviews in the past, I prepared myself all weekend by finding the typical interview questions and journaling down my answers and discussing it all with my hubbie who gave me some great pointers. I have also been telling myself that if its God's will than it will happen and based on experiences in my past I really do believe that. But the morning came and as I dressed and got ready for the day, I could start to feel the nervous energy kick in a bit. I stopped and prayed right than asking for God's peace. I continued to pray throughout the morning, on the way to the interview and even at the interview waiting for the man to come back from getting me some water. I have been in these kinds of situations enough to say I am so absolutely in awe of God and how I felt. I wasn't nervous. I felt a peace and a knowing to just share how I felt about being called to this position. I asked some good questions and got some good feedback that I was the only one who has applied that has my background with volunteering at the church in many of the areas that I would be working for in this position. Whatever God's will is will be and I am thankful for the opportunity and the experience of going through a brief interview process without the normal nerves. Pray it's God's will I get the job.
Romans 8:28  And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Monday, August 13, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 262

We celebrated my hubbie's birthday with my brother and his family yesterday. I am so proud of who my husband has become over the 16 years of our marriage. Nobody is perfect and everyone has things they can improve upon but over time we can see the growth and the wonderful changes that occur within someone. I caved in and decided to let my husband open one of this gifts for this birthday even though its not until this Wednesday. Its always fun to open gifts in the company of people you love and who love you. I gave him the choice of the predictable gift or the "oh my gosh" gift. Well, all the kids wanted to see the "oh my gosh" gift and started chanting in unison "open it, open it, open it". My husband was so sweet and gently ask our two young neices to help him open the present. It turned out to be a great "oh my gosh" moment. He totally did not expect to get an Xbox. It turns out he had contemplated getting one since getting his bonus in July but decided he needed to use the money for debt and house things. It couldn't have been a more perfect gift and the perfect time.  Jesus is our perfect gift given to us everyday. He is within us and we can call on the Holy Spirit to bless us with the gifts we need for that day and the rest of our lives. Thank you Lord for your perfect gift to us and for the gift of my husband and being a witness to his growth in you.
1 Peter 4:13 But rejoice insofar as you share Christ's sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 261

What's the motto? All work and no play makes So and So a dull boy/girl. So in the spirit of this motto, a co-worker and I came up with a little gag on a fellow co-worker.  This co-worker had recently told the story of how she was seeing these little poops in her house and was afraid it might be a mouse so she "Googled" the poop and found out it was actually squirrel poop. A squirrel had gotten into her house recently when an outside door was left open by the cleaning crew. They haven't found the squirrel which could be another story to come. Eeewww! So we came up with a plan to put a stuffed squirrel with some Raisinet as droppings all over her desk at some point during the day when she left her desk. We ended up having to ellicit help from a co-worker that sits next to her to put the plan into place and notify us that it was happening. Everyone came to see and take pictures and laugh. It made her day she told us. It was a blessing to us all to be able to laugh with each other instead of our normal stressed, frustrated or angry feelings associated with our jobs. Thank you Lord for giving us the creativity to have some fun and make those joyful moments happen.
Job 8:21 He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 260

My husband's 40th birthday has been approaching and I have been working on making it a memorable birthday without breaking my bank account. He will get a gift from his wish list. He will get a gift that will be totally unexpected purely because of the price as I don't typically spend more than a certain amount. He will get something funny that I created. He will get a framed scrapbook page that will reflect the first 3 decades of his life. He will get a cake that will very very memorable! I have always been a birthday person. Birthdays are special. This is the day you came into the world and each of us should be celebrated for just being. I am praising God for this man who though like all of us isn't perfect but he has qualities, charateristics, values that are very admirable. I am proud of him as a husband, father, friend, employee and child of God. Thank you Lord for this man.
1 Corinthians 1:4 "I always thank God for you because of His grace given you in Christ Jesus."

Friday, August 10, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 259

Conveinece in all it's forms is truly a blessing to us. We just happen to be living in the age of conveience. Technology has created a wide aray of things that help us in our everyday lives. I may have praised such specific things in the past such as a hot shower or my iphone but today I am going to praise the technology of the internet.  I use it for research purposes a lot. Researching medical issuses, vacation desitantions, things to do with the family for free, gift ideas for an upcomping birthday and on and on. I am using the internet everyday and am thankful for the convenience. For my scripture at the end of my blog praise for the day, I would research in the concordance of my bible for words that were part of my blog priase and look up and read scriptures until I found the one that went well with the praise or just flat out spoke to me. Somewhere along the line, I started searching for scripture about a certain subject on the internet. There are tons of sites out there that will give you a whole listing of scripture about a certain subject but the other interesting thing is finding articles and sermons about these topics.  For me, it's been an easy avenue to dig in a little deeper into a topic. Sometimes, I will even put a link in for you so you can read and dig more on the topic I have brought up. So thank you to God for giving us the brains to come up with such great tools that can be used for good things.
Here is a Rock Version found for Romans 8:28  Who knew???
All things work together for good to those who love God
All things work together for good to those who love God
And are called according to his purpose
And are called according to his purpose
(repeat above)

That means everything you're worried about's gonna work out in the end
for your good - not your bad
You're gonna be so glad!

When life won't go your way
Look on to a brighter day
'Cause everything will turn out great
Romans 8:28

Thursday, August 9, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 258

Singing praises for my cousin today. She is the sweetest person ever and has gotten me on a good path again for eating. I started the Take Shape for Life plan 10 days ago and as of yesterday morning have lost 8.2.lbs. She called me last evening and was just going ga-ga over the results I was having. When I committ to something I do the best I can. Friends and family are like angels-in-disguise. They do or say something just when we need it or bring an answer from God to something we have prayed for. I am so thankful to God for bringing my cousin to me that evening a couple of weeks ago that ultimately led to my road to healthier eating again. I may have to become a coach like her and help other people go down this path to freedom from the control of food.
Philippians 1:6: "For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus."

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 257

I am a sucker for a happy ending. I just don't like much the bizarre or negative endings that movies and books can come to. As I was finishing up my book yesterday, I wasn't sure what the ending was going to bring. It ended up being a happy ending or maybe I should say the ending that I wanted it to be. Our life is like that with God. We will go through lots of struggles, illness, grief throughout our life but in the end our story has the happy ending. We will go to be with Jesus and no longer live with pain, fear or stress. Our life will be the fairytale ending we always want for ourselves in heaven with our Lord. Are you like a book with a bizarre ending or a negative ending? Don't know what the next life will bring you or do you even believe in the next life? You can change the way your story is written and change the ending simply by looking to and believing that Jesus came to earth to save us from our sins and is the son of God. Living your life knowing you have that happy ending won't take away the fear, pains and stress of our lives but it becomes that much easier knowing you have a God who loved you so much he sent his only son to save you so you could have eternal life in the happy-ending place.  It's your choice how you want the ending to be and like all choices it should be done thoughtfully and with all the information you need to make an informed decision. Go to the Word of God in the bible and find what you need to make your decision if you haven't already.
Revelation 21: 6 He said to me: "It is done." I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give the drink without cost from the spring of the water of life.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 256

Today I am going to praise authors. What a gift you have to imagine a story and put it into words that captivate. I am reading a book called The Pact and am getting close to the end. I almost stayed up late to finish it but decided I better not. It's a good feeling to be sucked away into some other lives than your own sometimes, to just not think about the stress of life, the pain in your body, the greiving on getting old.  But books also not only can take you away from your own life but make you think about your own life. They make you think about things you might otherwise not think of. I read a little bit of the bible every day but its not grabbing me like it has before. A reading slump. Yep, that's what it is. And just in the nick of time, I get an article about bible reading slumps from YouVersion. One suggestion was to try reading it in a different version, another to read with others. I am sure with my creative mind I can come up with some creative way to start reading the bible. No matter what you are reading whether its a good book or THE good book, I hope you will be inpired, thought-provoked and blessed from the words written by others and especially by God.
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is full of living power. It is sharper than the sharpest knife, cutting deep into our innermost thoughts and desires. It exposes us for what we really are.

Monday, August 6, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 255

This Sunday our youth director did the sermon. It was an amazing sermon about how we need to remember how very Big our God is and we can do this and demonstrate this through our prayers. Joshua's relationship with God was such that he prayed for God to stop the Sun it's path. That is a Big prayer for a Big God. Nothing is impossible with God and Joshua truly believed that in praying for this. God answered and the Sun stopped that day for several hours. It spoke volumes to those that were worshiping Sun and Moon gods at the time. Only the one true God of the universe can do the impossible and stop the sun in it's track. Towards the end of the sermon, the youth director spoke about the incident that happened to the high school mission trip to Arkansas this summer that my son was a part of. I spoke about this before on my blog of how they came to find a car off the road in a ditch and as the adults on the mission trip lifted the car and held the head of the driver and spoke to him in Spanish about Jesus, the rest of the youth watched up on the road and prayed. They got the man out who was severly injured and he was put into a helicopter headed towards the hospital but unfortunately died in route to the hospital. God always answers our prayers but they may not always be answered specifically in what we prayed for. The point was made that it's not about the answer to the prayer. It's about the in-between point from the asking to the answer. Our God is a Big God and we can pray for anything and everything but it's not about the answer to those prayers but about our relationship with God. Examine your own prayer life as I will be doing mine and see if there are bigger things that you can be praying about to our Big God. Read this article about this miracle that Joshua prayed for here: 
Joshua 10: 13-14 “So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the nation avenged itself on its enemies, as it is written in the Book of Jashar. The sun stopped in the middle of the sky and delayed going down about a full day. There has never been a day like it before or since…

Sunday, August 5, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 254

The weekends are such a great time always. As much as I am thankful for having a job, I am very thankful to God for the weekends when I can get away from it completely for two whole days. The weekends are my time to focus on my family, my faith and the things I love to do. I wonder how hard it must have been before we had the official work week, before all the conveniences of our modern world, before technololgy. On a TV show we watch called Hell's Kitchen, they had the losing team for a paticular challenge, turn butter the old-fashioned way. It took forever, up and down, up and down. It just makes you think of how blessed we are to be able to go to a grocery store and have that kind of stuff already done for you. We have it easy but it's easy to take advantage of our blessings.  Think about these everyday life blessings today and give thanks to God for our life ease.
Colossians 3:15-17 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as memeber of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dewll in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.  And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.  

Saturday, August 4, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 253

As I was laying in bed this morning, contemplating all the plans for the day, I realized how very nice it was to be able to sleep in and wake up without the need to get up and get going.  In our fast paced world, it seems these moments of just peace, quiet and comfort are rare. This reminds me of how God wants us to be still and listen. We have to find the time, NO, make the time to just be still with God. These are the moments when our hearts are ready to receive the blessings of wisdom, clarity, guidance, insight, inspiration and on. Just like everything it is something we have to be intentional about. Jesus would go off alone into the mountains to just be with God. Are you making consitent alone time with God? Before the rush of the day starts, maybe this would be a good time to talk to God.  Lord, we thank you for the gift of our alone time with you. We forget how much it can help us and our relationship with each other. Help us to make the time to just be still and be with you so we can hear your voice. Amen.
Isa 30:20-21 Although the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, your teachers will be hidden no more; with your own eyes you will see them. Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it."

Friday, August 3, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 252

I started a new eating program on Monday. It is strict and planned which is what I needed. In just 4 days I have lost 5lbs! I am so thrilled! I still have a ways to go but will hopefully be able to get into some of my summer clothes before summer is over. I am praising God for my cousin and her introducing me to the Take Shape for Life program. It feels good to take back the control of my eating.  Now, I have to psych myself out for the donuts and bagels they will have at the office this morning for our quarterly celebration and pray I can get through it without being tempted to eat any of it.
Philippians 4:13  I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 251

I found myself last night tossing and turning with a song stuck in my head by Tenth Avenue North called Losing. Sometime in the early morning hours, with that song still going in my head and my head starting to hurt a little, I had a total flash of insight that came from God. I was very angry yesterday when I heard the news that I would have to be moving to another desk. It's not the moving part that is annoying; it's the fact that it will be to another in the same room. It will be a complete waste of my time and just make me further behind than I already am from being on vacation. It makes no sense to me but the owner has established assigned seating. I feel so micro-managed that it just hurts. I and all of my co-workers feel pretty much the same way about the new owner. We don't like him or what he is doing. It's created havoc, stress and makes us all feel disrespected and unappreciated. My feelings about this man are not good. Let's just leave it at that. However, my flash of insight last night as I sang the song in my head with these words:

Oh Father, give me grace to forgive them
Cause I feel like the one losin'
Thank you Lord for speaking to me through this song about my own situation and about my need for grace to forgive.
Matthew 18:21-22 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times? “Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.”

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

365 Days of Praise Challenge-Day 250

My son went to a youth activity at the church last evening called Crud Wars. Let me let your imagine wonder what the heck that entails for a moment. Imagine a slip-n-slide, water balloons, shaving cream, flour and goopy gel of some kind and a bunch of teenagers running around trying to throw all this on each other. I almost wished I had gone to pick him up sooner just to see some of it but when I arrived to pick him up the clean-up process had already been in full-swing. He walks up in his jeans and t-shirt soaking wet, has no towel or change of clothes and says "uh not sure what to do". Thankfully, my creative problem solving brain kicked into action. I used the sun shade in my car as a seat cover so we made it home without him soaking the passenger seat in my car. It was fun to hear the stories of how the evening went. I really wish I was there when he got the pie of shaving cream in the face! Apparently, they took a group photo so I am hoping to get a copy and create a scrapbook page of his memories of this activity. Thank you Lord for our church and the people who make these kinds of activites possible. What a fun bonding experience!
Colossians 3:14-16
And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.  Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.  Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.