Patsy Clairmont shows just how artistic and humorous she truly is in the pages of “Twirl”. The simple fact that each chapter of this very easy, smooth, and gentle read stands alone makes this a book that can be enjoyed at any time and in any place. “Twirl” invites you to look to find enjoyment of life in the simplest of things as Patsy reminds you just how much fun twirling used to be. As you spend time among the pages of this wonderfully uplifting volume, you will realize that some of the things in your life that you allow to cause you tension can be made much more tolerable, if you simply think of them as you twirl around. The words on these pages will bring you many moments of unadulterated joy. So much so, you will find yourself with highlighter in hand, marking favorite passages for future reference. As you spend time among the beautifully written words of Patsy Clairmont, an original “Women of Faith” speaker, you will notice increasing numbers of people coming to mind that you want to give a copy of “Twirl” as a gift. You can rest assured, “Twirl” will be a gift very well received. This is a book that you will retrieve from your bookshelf many times over as you find yourself rereading it time and time again.
These days it seems there are so many tragic stories, so much pain. Between school and mall shootings, children and babies suffering and dying, and currently the flu epidemic and the fear that goes with it. There’s illness, abuse, broken relationships, betrayal, sorrow, injuries, disappointment, heartache, crime and death. All of these leave many people asking the question, “Why? Why does God allow this?”
Just last night, a tiny, newborn baby girl, beautiful and precious, left the loving arms of her mother and father and went to be with Jesus. This little girl being so close to my family that she may as well of been. She is the daughter of my son-in-law’s cousin, a young man we have had to our house often, eaten many a meal with and shared holidays and family celebrations with. I’m sure there are several members of this family currently asking those questions, “Why? Why me? Why, God?”
That “why” question goes back thousands of years. It was asked in the Old Testament by Job and the writers of the Psalms, and it was especially relevant during the 20th century, where we witnessed two World Wars, the Holocaust, genocides in the Soviet Union and China, devastating famines in Africa, the killing fields of Cambodia, the emergence of AIDS, the genocide in Rwanda and the ethnic cleansing of Kosovo.
Things didn’t get any better in the 21st century. There was 9/11 and now the Syrian slaughters, and on and on. Why is all of this happening if there’s a loving and powerful God? Why do bad things happen to good people?
Several years ago, a national survey asked people what question they’d ask if they could only ask God one thing. The Number One response? “Why is there suffering in the world?” Interestingly, married people were much more likely to want to know why there’s so much suffering.
But if you’ve never asked why our world is infected with pain and suffering, you will when you or someone you love is struck. And Jesus warned us those times would come. Unlike some other religious leaders who wrote off pain and suffering as just being imagined, Jesus was honest. He told us the truth. He said in John 16:33, “You will have suffering in this world.” He didn’t say you might – he assured us it would happen.
But, why? If you ask me point-blank, “Why did God allow that precious baby, and now her parents to suffer?”, the only answer I can honestly give consists of four words – “I do not know.”
I cannot stand in the shoes of God and give a complete answer to that question. I don’t have God’s mind. I don’t see with God’s eyes. 1st Corinthians 13:12 says, “Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.”
So when you ask about specific individual events and want to know why this particular thing happened, we won’t get the full answer in this world. Someday, we’ll see with clarity, but for now things are foggy. We can’t understand everything from our finite perspective. And honestly, I don’t think any attempt at theological explanation is going to do anyone any good right now; any intellectual response is just going to seem rehearsed. What is desperately needed now is the very real and comforting presence of Jesus Christ in their lives. And I’m so grateful that this young family has a loving church and family helping them through this difficult time.
But for us, let’s focus on the big, overarching issue of why God generally allows suffering in our lives – your life and mine. People, this is important: even though we can’t understand everything about it, we can understand some things. So let’s try.
Imagine driving along a highway in the dark, when it starts to rain heavily and suddenly you hit dense fog. You can barely see the white stripe on the edge of the road and that is what you are using to attempt to stay on the road! You can’t stop because then someone might come along and rear-end you. Talk about scary!
Just as suddenly a truck appears in front of you. You can just make out his taillights through the fog. You guess he must have fog lamps in front, because he is traveling at a confident and deliberate pace, and somehow, you know if you can just follow those taillights, you’ll be okay, heading in the right direction.
I think the same is true in understanding why there is tragedy and suffering in our lives and in our world. We may not be able to make out all the peripheral details of why — they may be obscured from our view — but there are some key Biblical truths that can illuminate some points of light for us. And if we follow those lights, they will lead us in the right direction, toward some conclusions that I believe can help satisfy our hearts and souls.
What are those points of light? Let’s take a look at some that people have found helpful whenever they have felt prompted to ask the question, “Why?”
The first point would be that God is not the creator of evil and suffering.
This answers the question you hear so often: “Why didn’t God merely create a world where tragedy and suffering didn’t exist?” The answer is: He did! Genesis 1:31 says: “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.”
But if God is not the author of tragedy or evil or death, where did those things come from? Well, God has existed from eternity past as the Father, Son and Spirit, together in a relationship of perfect love. So, I think we can agree love is the highest value in the universe. And when God decided to create human beings, he wanted us to experience love. But to give us the ability to love, God had to give us free will to choose whether to love or not. Why? Well, because love always involves a choice.
If we were programmed to say, “I love you,” it wouldn’t really be love. Think of those dolls with a string in the back, and when you pull that string the doll says, “I love you.” Does that doll love the string puller? Of course not. It is programmed to say those words. To really experience love, that doll would need to be able to choose to love or not to love. Again – real love always involves a choice.
So in order for us to experience love, God bestowed on us free will. But unfortunately, we humans have abused our free will by rejecting God and walking away from Him. And that has resulted in the introduction of two kinds of evil into the world: moral evil and natural evil.
Moral evil is the immorality and pain and suffering and tragedy that come because we choose to be selfish, arrogant, uncaring, hateful and abusive. Romans 3:23 says “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
So much of the world’s suffering results from the sinful action or inaction of ourselves and others. For example, people look at a famine and wonder where God is. When in reality the world produces enough food for each person to have 3,000 calories a day. It’s our own irresponsibility and self-centeredness that prevents people from getting fed.
In other words: look at your hand. You can choose to use that hand to hold a gun and shoot someone, or you can use it to feed hungry people. It’s your choice. But it’s unfair to shoot someone and then blame God for the existence of evil and suffering. Like that old saying, “We have seen the enemy, and he is us.”
The second kind of evil is called natural evil. These are things like wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes and hurricanes that cause suffering for people. But these, too, are the indirect result of sin being allowed into the world. As one author explained: “When we humans told God to shove off, He partially honored our request. Nature began to revolt. The earth was cursed. Genetic breakdown and disease began. Pain and death became part of the human experience.”
The Bible says it’s because of sin that nature was corrupted and “thorns and thistles” entered the world. Romans 8:22 says, “We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.” In other words, nature longs for redemption to come and for things to be set right. That’s the source of disorder and chaos.
To be perfectly clear, God did not create evil and suffering. However, He did create the potential for evil to enter the world, because that was the only way to create the potential for genuine goodness and love. But it was us, human beings, in our free will, who brought that potential evil into reality.
Some people may ask, “Doesn’t God have a plan? Couldn’t He have foreseen all of this?” And I have no doubt He did. But look at it this way: many of you are parents. Even before you had children, couldn’t you foresee that there was the very real possibility they may suffer disappointment or pain or heartache in life, or that they might even hurt you and walk away from you? Of course — but you still had kids. Why? Because you knew there was also the potential for tremendous joy and deep love and great meaning.
God undoubtedly knew we’d rebel against Him, but He also knew many people would choose to follow Him and have a relationship with Him and spend eternity in heaven with Him. He must have thought it was all worth it for that, even though it would cost His own Son great pain and suffering to achieve their redemption.
In my next post, I’ll look at another ‘point of light’, the fact that God can use suffering to accomplish good.
Joel Osteen is pastor of one of the largest churches in our country, Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas. He has written numerous books, travels all over the world speaking and ‘preaching’. There is a website for his church, as well as his personal blog/web page. Whomever his publicist is, is a creative, blinded, genius! Osteen has been marketed in such a way that he has become a multi-millionaire while preaching the ‘prosperity’ message.
According to http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/3059879/posts … Osteen has recently decided that the Bible has errors in it and that the apostles Paul, Peter, and John are mistaken about some things, and they should be corrected and rebuked! I will let you read the article for yourself! When you finish reading it, please leave a comment sharing your thoughts on this article. I am very interested to see how others interpret what has been said by Osteen.
HERE IS THE ARTICLE….
Joel Osteen Rebukes Apostles Paul, Peter, and John
United for Awakening ^ | 8/27/13 | Peter Michael Martinez
Posted on 8/28/2013 2:22:54 PM by Sopater
According to Joel Osteen – Pastor of Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas, these first century apostles are wrong and outdated and he has come out boldly to infer indirectly that Apostles Paul, Peter, and John whom wrote much of the New Testament were wrong and need to be corrected and rebuked.
When asked directly if people whom are openly practicing homosexuals are accepted into the Kingdom, Joel Osteen responded with “Absolutely, anybody is.”
We all need to listen carefully to the words that this “man of God” speaks as he goes on interviews so we too can find the errors in the preaching of the first century apostles.
Joel does acknowledge that some things are “sin” but says, “I don’t address these things from the pulpit. They only come up in interviews.” When asked if openly practicing gay/homosexual people will be accepted into heaven, Joel Osteen responded, “I believe they will.”
He makes no mention of the need for repentance.
Joel Osteen Brings Us Universalism
The doctrine of universalism is the belief that all people are “saved” no matter who you are or what you’ve done.
This is a new version of the “good news” that is MUCH BETTER than the message the Jesus and the Apostles preached 2,ooo years ago which was far too narrow according to the way Joel Osteen explains his “message.”
“I’m for everybody” says Joel Osteen, “I’m not into excluding people. Jesus can reveal himself to anybody.”
The idea is that since no one would be accepted if we are called to be “holy” then all have to be accepted. So goes this logic. This doctrine also believes that all roads lead to heaven so there is no one “way, truth, and life that leads to the father.”
According to Joel, “sin means to miss the mark” which, while technically correct, stands in contrast to the teachings of many writers of the Bible that teach that sin is violation of God’s Holy Laws so if by missing the mark Joel means violating God’s ways, then yes, sin is missing the mark.
According to the out of date writers of the Bible, the “wages of sin is death” for which blood is required and for which a sacrifice was presented.
It sounds a lot more harsh to say SIN is TREASON punishable by death than to say it is “missing the mark” which is a bit incomplete. Sin is also “to incur guilt, incur penalty” which according to the scripture is death.
Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
When asked about people who live in open sin, Joel smilingly said, “I’m not going to bash those people. I’m not going to be against those people. They’re good people.”
So by contrast, Apostle Jude is “bashing people” when he said:
Jude 1:14-16 “And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, to execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him. These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaketh great swelling words, having men’s persons in admiration because of advantage.”
Joel’s wife recently said to Piers Morgan. “It’s the people that we’re after. We’re not trying to judge their sin. We want to encourage them and love them. You’re only going to win people by reaching out to them.”
Isn’t that so awesome! They are all about the people! They want you and I be accepted without having to discuss anything like repentance or righteousness. These are “judgmental” subjects that we just don’t need.
These modern day ministry giants have gone on national television to essentially correct Apostles Peter, John, and Paul to say … they are wrong … if you listen to Joel Osteen. So many across the nation are so proud of this Pastor and his courage in confronting the church fathers!
According to Joel Osteen, Apostle Paul erroneously stated to the Corinthians …
1 Corinthians 6:8-10 “Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud, and that your brethren. Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.”
In saying this, according to Joel Osteen, Apostle Paul is being “exclusionary” and should be rebuked and corrected. He is obviously wrong and should never have said these things to the Corinthian church.
Corinth was known for its sexual openness and promiscuity so for Paul to “condemn” all these “good people” was completely out of order and he needs to be rebuked.
When Paul wrote to the Romans he also was in complete error in stating the following in the first chapter of his letter, according to Joel Osteen.
“And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.”
According to Joel Osteen, Paul was absolutely incorrect and to state that being a homosexual is a sin is being “judgmental” and should not be tolerated. It is just wrong according to Joel Osteen. Many people agree with Joel Osteen today and so, Apostle Paul is apparently misguided and incorrect in his letter.
Joel goes on to point out the additional errors in the words Apostle Paul wrote.
“Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.” Paul went on to write in the first chapter of Romans, which according to the words of Joel Osteen, he is deeply misguided and mistaken.
Apostle Paul should repent for saying such things according to Joel Osteen. A growing number of people in America agree with Joel that Apostle Paul should be rebuked for ever saying such things because Paul isn’t accepting of people like Joel Osteen is.
Equally misguided and incorrect according to Joel Osteen is Paul’s words to the Galatian church. In his writings, Apostle Paul made stunning comments that were clearly exclusionary statements concerning the Kingdom and those whom are accepted, and in so doing has made grave error according to Joel Osteen.
See if you can detect the absolutely false statements that Apostle Paul made to the Galatian church according to the stated doctrine of Joel Osteen.
Galatians 5:19-21 “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.“
You can clearly see what has Joel Osteen so unhappy that he’s gone on national television to correct this! It is this type of rhetoric, according to Joel Osteen, that is completely false and misrepresents the God he serves.
Joel Osteen’s God loves everybody and there are no exclusions because then, according to Joel, “none of us would be saved.” So again, Apostle Paul was completely incorrect and should never have written such harsh and insensitive words to the Galatian church according to Joel.
I imagine Joel Osteen would say “shame on Apostle Paul for ever writing such hateful words!”
Now, not only is Joel out to correct the misguided Apostle Paul, but Apostle Peter was also brought into serious question for clearly being exclusionary when he wrote these words.
1 Peter 1:14-16 “As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”
According to the doctrine Joel Osteen has now shared with us all as “his message,” being clearly more evolved and enlightened than the archaic Apostle Peter, no one can be holy. We are left to conclude that Peter is misguided and is being judgmental. What a terrible yoke and condemnation Apostle Peter is trying to put on the good people he is writing to.
Additionally, Apostle Peter goes on to say things that are completely against the Lakewood Church Pastor’s God when he stated the following.
2 Peter 2:6-8 “And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly; And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)”
According to Joel Osteen’s public comments, one could conclude that Apostle Peter was in complete error and deceived when he wrote such things. What a terrible condemnation. He clearly did not know the doctrine that Joel Osteen preaches or he would never have said such awful and critical things.
Joel Osteen indirectly implies (subtly) that these apostles were false and were critical and judgmental and should NOT be listened to in America today. We all need to listen instead to Joel Osteen and Oprah Winfrey.
Now Apostle John made even greater errors if the benchmark is Joel Osteen’s “message” when he stated some of the thing that he wrote which, according to Joel Osteen, is just plain and simply not true.
It takes a lot of courage for Joel to stand against these writings but he believes strongly in his “uplifting and encouraging” doctrine that does not endorse such harsh and judgmental statements as written by these ancient Apostles.
We should all pray for Joel Osteen because he needs our prayers if he’s going to continue to champion the cause of those oppressed and condemned by the writings and statements of Apostles like Paul, Peter and John.
Revelation 21:8 “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
You see, according to Joel Osteen in a recent interview, “God doesn’t see any sin as worse than another” and all are going to heaven. Apparently in Joel Osteen’s bible, he has redacted the unpardonable sin. So if you’re a follower of Joel Osteen’s then this statement by Apostle John must seem just plain wrong.
Apostle John doesn’t know what he’s talking about and we need to listen to the wisdom of Joel Osteen. Apostle John clearly was in error and should be rebuked for suggesting that people who tell lies are going to have their part in the lake of fire.
What was Apostle John thinking writing such judgmental things???
That’s a terrible thing to say and no one, certainly not Apostle John, should be allowed to say such things. As Joel says, “there’s enough condemnation in the world” and we don’t need anymore.
Additionally, in his letter, Apostle John says things like …
1 John 3:8-10 “He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.”
Now according to Joel Osteen and the thousands that agree with his “message,” this entire passage should be removed from the pages of the bible and no one should be saying such things. In fact, Joel goes on to share that it is this exact kind of preaching that will hinder “church growth.”
Apostles Paul, Peter, and John listen up. Joel Osteen rebukes you all.
Now listen, Joel Osteen and his ministry in Houston are all about people. He is standing up for your rights! He is taking a REALLY BIG RISK because … if he’s wrong, and Apostle Paul is right … then he stands to be cursed! So he needs your support in prayer NOW!
Galatians 1:9 “As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.”
Instead, you all need to listen to his message of universal acceptance and lawless living without any condemnation so we can all “lift our spirits” and be “encouraging and loving” to all people no matter what lifestyle or choices they make. After all, according to Joel, God loves us all and everyone is going to heaven so lighten up!
There is no exclusive path to the Kingdom. According to Joel Osteen, we need to hear this message because it’s the right message and anyone that says that there is an exclusive path to God is wrong.
Joel would know, look at the size of his church! He is clearly telling you the truth more than anyone in history.
John 14:6 “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
Exactly how much error is too much?
Overview of Joel Osteen/Oprah deceptions:http://youtu.be/weEWl52wevI
Joel Osteen meets with Larry King … Here’s the link: http://youtu.be/KwL1DThtxYg
Joel Osteen meets with Piers Morgan … Here’s the link: http://youtu.be/tgCpRNfBzys
To his credit, in this interview Joel does call out sin, however, he softens it and backs away from talking about repentance … and when he is asked “what would you say” his comment is that he doesn’t understand. You’re leading the largest church in America and you don’t understand REPENTANCE?
The quotes are taken right from what Joel himself has spoken. He positions himself on his own without being told how to answer. On the one hand he wants to appease his Christian followers by saying “the bible says” but on the other he clearly fellowships with darkness and facilitates those whom deny the power thereof.
2 Timothy 3:1-7 “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.”
As I said I am very interested in your opinions of what you have just read. So please, leave a comment and let’s have a calm and focused discussion!
To be fair, I did go to Osteen’s webpage and do a little reading. I don’t know if the website just needs to be updated to correlate with what Osteen has said he believes, or if the article above is completely false. I do know that something is stinky in Houston though!!
I will let you discern for yourself. Here is a link to Osteen’s webpage and a description of what their beliefs are, or were! http://www.joelosteen.com/Pages/WhatWeBelieve.aspx
So I guess my question comes down to, just what is Joel Osteen up to?
How many times have you heard the phrase, “God will never give you more than you can handle” and wondered why He thought you could handle so much? I know I have tons of times!
I know the people telling me that when I am going through a tough time or some hardship all mean well, but I have to remind myself that they must not be studying their Bible very closely if they truly believe that! Why? Because it just isn’t true!
You see, I know that God DOES give us more than we can handle, on our own. There is something key in that last statement, ‘on our own’. It did take me a very long time to realize this, but now that I have, it seems like those tough times have gotten a little easier. I
know that no matter what I am going through, if I will put all my trust in God to get me through it, He WILL! The reason He lets us go through difficulties is so that we will pull closer to Him. Maybe not always, but most of the time, when He allows something that we feel we just can’t handle to come into our lives, it is because we have made the decision to distance ourselves from Him. Remember, God will NEVER leave us nor forsake us, but we are always leaving Him. There is always some area of our lives that we just don’t want God ‘butting into’! Right?
If we will turn to the scriptures when we are feeling overwhelmed, we will find exactly what God has in store for us! We can search and search for the scripture that tells us He won’t give us more than we can handle, but we will never find it. It just does not exist!
The scriptures never say that the Lord won’t give you more than you can handle. In 1 Corinthians 10:13 it does speak of God giving us an escape from temptations so that it’s not too much to bear. But, when we have to deal with pain, trials, heartache, and burdens– not once does it say it won’t be more than we can bear. Instead, it beautifully says this instead:
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matt. 11: 28-30)
The words struck my heart, as you can imagine. Christ is speaking to those of us who are carrying burdens much too heavy for our own shoulders. And in that one verse he simply states the reason why we are given more than we can handle: It’s so we can come to him. It’s so we can trust him enough to hand over our heavy, crippling burdens and let him carry the load.
You might be heavy laden right now, searching for some kind of relief. You are probably full of questions. Maybe you are wondering why you have to be full of sadness or drowning in debt, why did that person at church say that to you, why are you stuck raising your children all alone? Perhaps you have recently discovered that you are not able to have biological children, or an adoption you had your heart set on has fallen through, and you know that as a result, the child or children you were planning to give a loving home to, will continue to suffer. Someone you know and love, or maybe yourself, is dealing with a terminal illness and you question what is going to happen to the children or spouse when the inevitable happens. You know that you need someone to help you through these difficult times, but you really just don’t want to depend on someone that you cannot see or hear or touch. You know that you should have faith that God will do what He has said He will, but it is so hard to blindly trust! He does promise that He will carry us through those difficult times, so why can’t we trust Him to do what He promises?
Maybe it’s because of pride that we believe we can do it our self. We know we are strong and tough and that we always help others through their difficulties while keeping our own hidden from sight. However, when we become overwhelmed we realize that we are so totally wrong with this way of thinking!
We don’t really understand exactly what God is capable of until we totally trust Him to get us through whatever we are dealing with, when we have no other choice. Knowing that He will get us through when we have no other avenue for help, why don’t we just trust in Him from the beginning? Why do we insist on making everything much more difficult than it has to be?
Did Daniel hesitate to trust in God when he was placed in the lion’s den? Did Shadrack, Meshack, and Abednego hesitate when they were placed in the fiery furnace? We have these examples, and many more, to look at and compare our present circumstances to, so why are we still so hard headed?
We need to stop and remember that, no matter how difficult life gets, God is always right there with us. He is always ready, willing, and able to help us through. He just wants us to trust Him.
THIS POST ORIGINATED ON ONE OF MY OTHER BLOGS, http://POSITIVELY-PINK-DAISIES.BLOGSPOT.COM/ , AND I WANTED TO SHARE IT WITH ALL POSSIBLE READERS. I HOPE YOU ENJOY!! ALL MY BLOGS…… I have more than just this blog that I SHOULD be writing on. I always have good intentions of keeping my writing up and then something happens and I just let it go. I am going to attempt to be much better at keeping at least this one up this year! With that in mind, I am going to provide a link to my other blogs, both in this post as well as a more permanent location on one of my sidebars! I have so many different things that I like to talk about that I easily confuse myself! With that in mind, I think I will attempt to keep each blog going, and have each one with a certain topic ‘focus’. For example, this one would be more about the aspect of my life related to any kind of work or job. Now, since I am presently unemployed, I will have to be creative with this. I won’t be including only discussion about a job in which I am being paid! (Although, if that does occur, I will most certainly be telling you all about it!) I have a couple of things in the works so hopefully you will be seeing, and enjoying, more written works from me in the very near future! In the mean time, I invite you to take a look at my other blogs as well! Please, feel free to like or follow each one! I can certainly use all the followers I can get!! Isn’t that one of the reasons that bloggers write in the first place? So people can read their words?? I know it is for me. I do hope you enjoy them and will provide me with some feedback through the comments!! I will be sharing stories of my family life on http://fghallfamily.wordpress.com/ . Please, check us out and, yes, you can go ahead and tell me just how crazy you think my family truly is!! Trust me. I already know this!! My walk of faith and belief in Jesus Christ will be documented (for the most part) here: https://simplewordsofachristianmom.wordpress.com/ . I am most certainly not a Biblical scholar, in fact I consider myself a mere infant when it comes to Biblical knowledge, but I do have bits and pieces that I have learned that I like to share. I am also typically very anxious to share when I learn something new! So, beware!! LOL I am always excited to read other people’s opinions or interpretations of God’s word. However, I will NEVER tolerate anyone bashing my Christian beliefs. While I do believe in religious freedom, to me that means that if you do not believe in Jesus Christ, you are free to express that fact elsewhere other than on MY blog! Thank you very much!! One of my hobbies is scrapbooking. I love to document special moments and occasions through the decorated pages that hold my precious photos! I also love to share those pages and ideas. Of course, I am also always looking for new ideas! So feel free to let me know what you think about what I am presently working on, as well as to share your ideas on http://msjsscrappin.wordpress.com/ . If you visit this blog today, you will notice that it is in dire need of work! In fact, it is in need of more than just a title!! Please check back, or subscribe, so that you will know as soon as I get some stuff posted there!! You may be asking what is going to happen to this blog, other than to be a relay site for my others. Well, this blog will be my ‘everything else’ blog. I have always wanted to write, (and preferably be paid for it!), so hopefully something that I write about, or say here will be noticed by someone in the publishing world, or even just a small paper or magazine! Who knows? It sure doesn’t hurt to dream now does it? Please leave words of encouragement, advice, or just share bits of your dreams here. I truly don’t mind. But know that if you get selected to be published through my blog, I will expect an autographed copy of whatever you have published!! So, with all that being said, I look forward to staying busy with these various blogs in different aspects of my life. Will all these blogs have new posts each day, or week? I honestly don’t know! That depends on what I have to say, and how busy I am in other areas of my life. Just know that if I haven’t posted on your favorite recently, you are welcome to respond on my most recent post on one of the others and let me know that you miss me!! Trust me. You won’t hurt my feelings telling me that!! God bless and have a beautifully blessed day!!
So often when someone talks of extended family they are referring to cousins, aunts, uncles, in-laws, etc. We tend not to consider friends as extended family, but in so many cases they are just that. When you have known someone for 30 years, been friends with them, been to dinners, prayed with them, had them preach at relatives funerals, had them marry your children, then I think you become extended family.
Last week we lost a very dear member of our extended family. You see, my husband and I met Thomas Brown and his wife Jean on our wedding day! From that day on, they were members of our family, and I always have felt that they were members of our family. I had the special priviledge of becoming friends with both of their daughters, Vicki and Liz, and later son Paul. As the time passed I met other members of their family and each and every one always treated me as if I had been a member of their family my entire life. I never had anyone in that family treat me with anything less than love, grace, and compassion.
I have learned so much about love and grace and compassion from each and every member of the Brown family. Anytime that you see any of them, be ready because they have a hug ready for you! They are always ready and willing to pray with you, or for you. If you ever had a need in your life, whether for you or a family member, or even just someone you knew, whether it was a physical, mental, or financial need, they were ready to do whatever they could to help.
As owners of the Christian Book & Supply Store in Jasper, I can’t begin to tell you how many Bibles I saw Bro. or Sis. Brown give to whomever the customer might be. Or in many cases, they would hear a story of someone in need, someone struggling and their first response would be to give…whether it was a Bible they would give or some other material item, or even a financial gift, they gave. They gave because they knew that God had already given them so much and they delighted in sharing their blessings. They truly enjoyed helping someone in need and it didn’t matter to them what color someone’s skin was, or where they grew up. It didn’t matter to them what someone’s address was. All that mattered to them was if the person had a need and God led them to help.
You see, unlike so many of us, this family listened to the Holy Spirit. In each and every thing that they did, every decision they made, every gift they gave, they listened to what God told them. They would always pray and listen. So many of us fail to do that and then we wonder why our decisions or our actions don’t go the way we think they should.
We pray, oh BOY do we pray! We ask God to give us this or do that for us. We rarely ask what we can do for someone else or how we can do something for someone else. If we would simply pray with our hearts and ears open, pray humbly, and pray seeking God’s will, we would see that things would turn around and be so much better for all around us.
That is what the Brown family does. When they pray, they trust that God is going to answer. They don’t know if God’s answer is going to be yes, no, or not right now, but they knew WITHOUT A DOUBT that God was going to answer. And they knew that He was going to answer in His own time, not in our time. The faith that family has is so inspiring and encouraging to me.
Oh, they have had their difficulties, their downs and disappointments, but through them all they maintained their faith. They always KNEW that God was going to take care of things. They KNEW that He was going to supply what was needed, open the hearts that they encountered, and they had no doubt that “All things are possible with God.”
And, because of the beautiful and wonderful Brown family, I also know that “With God, all things are possible.” I will always, always love each and every member of that beautiful family, and I am so eternally grateful that God introduced us almost 30 years ago.
Brother Thomas Edgar Brown, Jr., I will always love you and miss you. You now know what a profound affect you have had on my life, on the lives of all my family members, and on the lives of all those you have touched in one way or another. You have had a hand in leading so many to come to know and accept Jesus, too many to count! But God knows, and that is what is important. You are now there in Heaven walking the streets of gold, enjoying reunions with family and friends that have gone before you, but most importantly, you are in the presence of Jesus! I am so thrilled for you! Yes, we miss you here on this cold, hard-hearted earth, but we look forward to the day when we can celebrate with you there with Jesus. Until that time, thank you for being a guardian angel for me, and the many others that you are. We love you so very much!
Hey folks!! If you can, please, PRAYERFULLY consider helping with this cause!! Thank you so much for the consideration, and God bless you!!!
Hi folks! I am a volunteer with the East Texas Pregnancy Help Center and many of you know just how much I love it! This is an awesome ministry, helping so many young women, as well as young men, in making critical decisions about their lives. Yes, one of our goals is to save lives, which we do by educating young pregnant women about their options and everything involved in any of their options. We believe that many times decisions are made with either no information, or false information. That is why we educate on the TRUE FACTS of abortion, adoption, and parenting. We do NOT offer, nor refer for abortion services. We simply tell them straight, honest, truth about procedures, risks, and effects- immediate and long term, of any decision they make. It is because of this, and our strong faith in God, that this ministry has been so successful in the short time it has been in place! Because we share the love of God with everyone who comes through our doors, they are blessed! WE are blessed! God blesses us each and every day by allowing us to continue in this ministry!
Yes, we have some very difficult days or cases, but in all things we trust God. We listen to our Father, and we follow His guidance. Prayer is a MAJOR part of our ministry, either through our constant prayers, or the prayers of those warriors we have praying for us and the ministry. Without these prayers, we could not do this! Without the wonderful support of so many, this ministry would not work. Thank you to all who support ETPHC in one way or another!
It is for your continued support that I am making this request. Our clients, mostly young women who have found themselves unexpectedly pregnant and frightened about what is to come, make many sacrifices for their unborn children. These young women give up fun evenings out with friends to come to our center for educational classes and Bible studies! They come to the center for parenting classes, life skill classes, labor and delivery class, cooking, financial management and other classes, as well as Bible study. Currently we have “Sheparding a Child’s Heart” going on and the participants are enthusiastically participating!
We are seeing lives changed! These young people are seeing the true love of God through the staff and volunteers of ETPHC, which often, sadly, they have not seen even from their home churches! It is this that is turning these young people BACK toward God! Many have felt that their church, pastors, family, friends, etc., have turned their backs on them or scorned them because of a mistake that they made. But then, by the wonderful grace of God, they come through our doors! From the very first contact they make with ETPHC they feel the love of God. Why? Because everyone who works with this ministry has been directly affected in a very personal manner by some aspect of an unplanned pregnancy. Maybe it is personally, maybe it is a family member, or maybe it is a friend who had an unplanned pregnancy. Everyone there has a story to share. God has called each member of this ministry in a special way, either to share their story, to help someone in a situation similar to what they have been through, or just to support those in difficult situations.
We have many supporters who do not directly work at the center, but their support is just as important! Without them, this ministry would not succeed. These supporters consist of prayer warriors, financial donors, donors of baby items, and those who donate in different ways and with different projects. Our prayer warriors are some of the most powerful prayer warriors I have ever seen!!
It is more of these ‘extra curricular’ supporters that I am seeking just now.
I have been given the privilege of hosting a class this summer for our young mothers. This class is one in which they will create a very special memory album, or scrapbook, of their new baby! Most of these new mothers have very limited resources and a class like this is a luxury to them! But, they deserve this very special treat! Donations received or promised thus far have not even begun to scratch the surface of the need. So, please, continue to read about this class. Help if you can. Definitely pray for us, our clients, this class, and our center.
Please, please, please…..prayerfully consider this.
Hey folks! I have an awesome opportunity for you to be a tremendous blessing to a new mother! The East Texas Pregnancy Help Center will be hosting a class this summer for new mothers to create a scrapbook of their new babies. You can help by sponsoring one or more mothers. For just $50 your sponsorship will provide all the necessary supplies for a mother to create a beautiful album filled with decorated pages and photos of her baby. Won’t you share the love of Jesus with these young ladies and help make this class a success? Here is the info:
WHAT: Scrapbooking Class for East Texas Pregnancy Help Center Clients
WHEN: June 12-July 26, 2012
WHY: Mothers who have limited resources deserve the opportunity to showcase their memories. The clients of ETPHC work very hard to earn points to obtain necessities for their new babies. I would like to provide them with something fun to do, that costs them nothing. This will also be a wonderful opportunity to share the love of Jesus with them in such a way that they are not being pressured to make a decision right at that moment. I believe that if someone sees and feels the love of Jesus Christ through something as simple as the gift of a memory album in which they are also taught how to create such an album on a shoestring budget, they will see that Jesus, nor His followers, is not something or someone to be frightened of, or resistant to. When presented in a loving, non-judgmental manner, the Good News of Jesus Christ is much more readily accepted!
You can help me to share Christ and His love with these young mothers by helping with the expense of supplies. This initial class will be offered for 10-15 participants at an estimated cost of $50-$75 per person, for a total cost of $500+. I realize that sounds expensive, but the cost includes an album and all supplies to complete a minimum of 20 pages in that album. Also, if donations exceed total cost of materials for this class, anything extra will be donated directly to ETPHC for other programs.
SCRAPBOOK SUPPLIES CAN BE DONATED AS WELL, IF YOU SO CHOOSE. ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING WILL BE GREATLY APPRECIATED!
If you, or someone you know, would like to assist with the cost of this class, please contact myself, Judy Hall @ 409-382-2775 – firstname.lastname@example.org – Facebook @ scrappinmama2533; OR you can contact East Texas Pregnancy Help Center @ 409-381-8600.
Donation of scrapbook items or supplies can be either dropped off at ETPHC Mon-Thurs, between 9-4, or if you choose to mail them, you may send them to me at:
Judy Hall, 2533 County Road 101, Jasper, TX 75951; OR, you may send them directly to ETPHC @ 157 Milam St., Jasper, TX 75951
If you cannot assist with the cost of the class, please keep myself and the clients and staff of ETPHC in your prayers.
Thank you so much for considering this request!