Monday, May 21, 2018

Forgetting God


What day is it? Maybe, a day to remember. At times, I forget God. I forget to pray. I rush remembering my schedule forgetting His schedule. Classes this afternoon, a writing deadline, a newsletter to write, emails to answer, the things that are always on my schedule. Am I forgetting anything today? Yes. God's schedule--a time with Him. Has He forgotten me?

When life gets so busy, it's easy to not spend time with the One who gives us all blessings. This last week, I daily asked the Lord for so many things--understanding in all I'm learning, health to do it all, and provision for our ministry and us––along with all those prayers for family, friends, and safety. And, I kept telling the Lord I wanted to spend more time with Him––but, I had Him on hold. Yes, I had devotions, and yes, I meditated on Scripture but had I blocked out everything so I could hear His voice? Not really!

But this morning, God gave me that time. I hadn't made time for Him, so He arranged a deserted place to be with Him. He said to them [me],"Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while" Mark 6:31(NRSV).

Our Internet server's tech guy finally arrived to find and fix the problem we were having with our speed. They had to cut our service to work on the issue. No internet and so many things to do. After pleading with God that He hurry those men along so I could get to the tasks I had to do, I heard Him say, "Come with Me."

I closed my computer and opened my Bible. I began reading in Psalms where I had stopped yesterday, and this is what it said...

"Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle" Psalm 144:1(NIV). I have been in a battle. Any time we are giving God's Word out, we engage in that battle, and it is a war. The enemy will do anything to keep God's Word from spreading. Now I am writing to get God's Word out, and I feel that opposition. Never before have we had so many unresolved internet problems. And, some days I feel like my head is going to explode from all the new things I am putting into it. But, God is training my hands and fingers so that I can write His message.

After spending time in God's Word, I wasn't uptight because it was taking so long to get my internet up and running again. I took a walk with God up the mountain behind our house. There were no camels there in my desert, only two ponies and what seemed like thousands of birds singing to Him––a little bit of heaven, a refreshing time with my Creator. I didn't have to travel to an exotic faraway place to get away from it all  (I already live in one), I just needed His refreshing presence.

I know God will teach me what I need to know, so that I accomplish the work He has for me. He is training my hands and fingers to write for him. He told me so today when I walked with Him.

What day is it today? Today (and every day) is a day to remember God. He never forgets you and me. Will you walk with Him in a deserted place today?

"The Lord remembers us and will bless us" (Psalm 115:12a NLT). Let's not forget Him.


Friday, April 20, 2018

Exercise Guru Not Required


Train in God's Gym:
Exercise Guru Not Required

Shape Your Soul:
31 Exercises of Faith that Move Mountains

Climb new heights of faith—move mountains of unbelief.

Embark on a journey to a healthy body and soul. Let your mind soar with condors at heights of 14,000 feet over the majestic Andes Mountains and challenge your soul to trust God while you trek through jungles at sea level––two paradigms of the author’s 31 stories. Train in God’s Gym and work out the difficult circumstances of your proverbial mountains and jungles. Each chapter also includes suggested physical exercises with biblical applications. 

Shape Your Soul seeks to equip you for God’s purpose and plan of your life.

Experience miracles, supernatural encounters, and everyday blessings of living for God through real-life stories of an ordinary, cowgirl boots and jeans kind of missionary gal who encounters the same physical and spiritual challenges as you––although different circumstances. 

Aspire to live in freedom—free to live according to God’s Word and experience His power and love. Allow God to stretch you and warm you up to a life of soul exercising daily! Learn to exercise your faith muscles on your spiritual mat. And, you don’t have to be an exercise guru to train in God’s Gym. 

Enter God’s Gym and exercise your body and soul so you can seize difficult life-mountains, in God’s strength, and move them!

Each chapter of SHAPE YOUR SOUL will:

*Inspire spiritual growth with stories of faith, adventures, and undeniable God moments.
*Suggest a physical exercise at the end of each chapter that also correlates with biblical applications.
*Encourage you to exercise your faith muscles so you'll soon notice the movable mountains in your path.

Available for pre-order here: https://amzn.to/2qLYeWw



Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Children's Book New Release


A children's picture book of celebration and faith. Celebrate Easter with Max and Jake, the Golden Retriever brothers. Find out how a mysterious giant rabbit rescued Max on Rocky Mountain when he fell into a dark cave. And, learn how Jesus rescued us from our sin with the story of the Easter cross.

Then, enjoy Children's Day and discover how George the Saint Bernard learns to be obedient to his parents after leaving his yard without permission and tumbling into the beautiful cactus house of his friend Artie the Armadillo––ouch!

And, finally, party on the Fourth of July and say, "Happy Birthday America" with Kelsey, the Shih Tzu. Experience the history of the Fourth of July, the Declaration of Independence, and the first birthday party of our country on July 4th, 1777––a long time ago.
Heart-Warming Holiday Stories for Children

   Animal antics draw children in with vivid illustrations
   Historical tidbits are sprinkled throughout
   Stories end with Bible principles

   While learning history and Bible lessons, children will be entertained and giggle with delight at the humorous and whimsical animals and critters that will find a place in their hearts.

     Available on Amazon at: amzn.to/2GtElhN  


Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Lovely Noise


Valentine's Day is here and images of hearts emerge everywhere. But, how is my heart and yours? Missionaries tell of how we came to our respective fields of service to love the people. Sounds easy, doesn't it? And, of course, it is what every supporter (and God) expects of their missionary. It's truly the desire of most of us. If I had to guess, I'd say most missionaries won't admit how hard it is at times to love the people they serve.

So let's examine the myth (the traditional story). You know the one. "We love the people we serve." Let me say; it's only God's love that allows us to love the people we serve. We love them because of God's love. However, you don't have to be on the mission field to find it hard to love others. Let's face it; some people are hard to love––maybe I'm one of them for some people.

 On the field, we serve the unwanted, the poor, the not so clean, and sometimes even the wealthy who have no material needs. But, God loves us all and desires for all to hear His Word and know and love Him.

How many times have I said, "These are the people we came to love." When I see a two-year-old child playing on a busy road with little clothing my first remark is, "Where is that mother?" And, not with loving words do I spit those words from my mouth. It's heartbreaking. Or, how about when the people I came to love don't want to hear about God and despise me? Do I love that person? It's not easy but possible. But how?

If we're honest, most of us know people who unnerve us. It may be a family member or even a good friend, but they are there to stay--stuck in our lives. So what can we do about these unlovable ones in our lives?

1 Corinthians 13:1-3 (TLB)

"If I had the gift of being able to speak in other languages without learning them and could speak in every language there is in all of heaven and earth, but didn't love others, I would only be making noise...If I gave everything I have to the poor people, and if I were burned alive for preaching the Gospel but didn't love others, it would be of no value whatever."

There you have it--just making noise. I must love that mother who doesn't care for her children, and cuddle the dirty and unloving. That is God's love--not mine. So instead of making noise with my words, I must speak with God's love and show His love. Only then will I make lovely noise. Funny how the unlovable become lovable when God changes us not them.

The world begins the big love celebration in a few days, Valentine's Day. Let's celebrate God's love every day with a year-long Valentine's Day. The noise we make can wake a soul to find God but only with lovely noise that is from God's heart! Let's make lovely noise this Valentine's Day and not only love the lovable but the unlovable also.

Let me add one thing to clarify how much missionaries love the people we serve--no matter how hard. We know that we love them when we cry as much leaving them behind to go on furlough as we do when we leave our family and friends after furlough. We do love the people we serve. It's not always easy, but with God's love, it is possible.

Celebrate God's heart this Valentine's Day–-with chocolate too. I'm sure God loves chocolate! He gave us the cocoa bean. He loves us that much--and much, much more.

Let's be of value and make lovely noise with our words.

Happy Valentine's Day––all year long!



Monday, January 8, 2018

Holiday Stories


I'm excited to share the cover of the first book of my new children's series, Hooray  for Holidays, Book 1 is now available on Amazon.

Start the new year off reading about Quasimodo's new hairy, scary friend—a cat and a tarantula. And, finish the year celebrating with a lost Quechua boy and a llama on Christmas Day during a rainstorm in a mountain cave. The complete series includes three stories per book with a total of four books. They will be released quarterly in 2018––starting in January.


The heart-warming holiday stories with adorable animal antics, history tidbits, and Bible principles plus beautiful artwork will delight children and stretch their imagination. And, adults will recall historical facts forgotten from their grade school days.

Each page incorporates real-life animals and critters in and around our ministry base, Rumi Rancho, as the main characters. While learning history and Bible principles, children will giggle at the humorous and whimsical animals and critters that will find a place in their hearts forever. 


This little guy is in every illustrations, but he's hiding. Kids will love searching for him throughout the series. Why is he blue? You'll have to wait to read his story. 




Available now on Amazon 

Monday, August 21, 2017

Puppy Lessons––Rocking with God


In the early mornings, I sit down with God and rock a while––with a puppy on my lap. A puppy at our age? What were we thinking? It was inevitable that we'd eventually decide to get another dog one day because one of our Goldens had recently gone over the Rainbow Bridge and his brother would join him sooner than later––he had cancer.

But, we didn't plan on coming home with a puppy the day we went to buy Jake a sweater because he'd lost all his hair from chemo treatments. It was winter in Bolivia, and Jake shivered in the mornings. So off we went to the marketplace on a sunny, brisk morning to find him a sweater.

My warning to my husband that morning ––"Don't look at the dogs for sale." I should have warned myself! There she was, a Shih Tzu. Our Shih Tzu, Kelsey had been gone six years. She celebrated her 18th birthday and a day later went over the Rainbow Bridge. Never again another little dog turned into right now, this little dog. And so we brought her home to Jake. He loved her, and Zoey perked him up for a few weeks. But, then the dreaded day came for him to go over the Rainbow Bridge to join his brother, Max. We all cried, even Zoey.

But this morning, I have a puppy on my lap. Zoey joined our family at just the right time. I'm thankful I didn't listen to my own advice--"Don't look at the dogs." And, as I sat rocking with Zoey this morning, (she sits on my lap while I read my Bible in the early mornings) I read this in my devotions:

Luke 10:38 - 42 says, " As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!"

"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed––or indeed only one." Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her."

So here I sit, with a puppy on my lap. Every morning, Zoey chooses to sit on my lap and rock for a while just to be near me. Maybe she knows I won't be sitting much the rest of the day. Dogs are smart, you know. When I finish my reading, she goes about her day playing, napping, and going outside for the necessities of life. But first, she chooses to be with me. Yes, she chooses what's best before other things––not that the other things are wrong, but the best is first.

Isn't that what Mary did? She chose to let the unimportant things go for the most important thing--time at Jesus' feet. Maybe Martha, like us, was overwrought because of going overboard with preparations, unimportant things. Yes, food was necessary but maybe not a six-course meal, maybe a light lunch instead so she could sit at Jesus' feet along with Mary. Maybe her sister tried to tell Martha she was too caught up in the little things to see what was important. But Martha couldn't see it––the most important thing, Jesus.

It's about our choices not our schedules or to-do lists. Seek ye first the kingdom and all these things will be added unto you. We try to add the things and then seek the kingdom. Let's heed Jesus words and seek Him first. Maybe our priorities will change and what we thought to be important will become dim in the light of His face. We can learn from a puppy and first rock with Jesus and then make the right choices daily, so we aren't frazzled in our work like Martha.

Puppies know the better! Come rock with the Master in the mornings.

Today's promise: Jesus will not take away from you what is better for you! Luke 10:42

Today's (puppy) lesson: Let's not be distracted like Martha and settle for good when God wants to give us the better! Let's choose the better as Mary did.

Zoey

Saturday, August 19, 2017

My Wondrous Cow


Have you experienced an undeniable God moment? For me, one such moment came in a phone call. The proof of this call is visible upon entering my living room because there she stands—a cow. You can’t miss her. She claims her corner spot––ten years and counting. At every glance her way, she reminds me of God’s incredible love. Proof of His love—a cow in my living room. Her story is recounted to curious visitors frequently. How did she end up at my house? Love––God’s love.

I first saw the likes of her at a friend’s home and immediately fell in love with her. So, I set out to find a cow just like her to travel to Bolivia with me. We’ve carried many things back to Bolivia after furlough––but a cow?

My quest began in my hometown area in the beautiful mountains of western Pennsylvania where ski resorts welcome visitors from near and far. Little specialty shops lure visitors with their crafts and homemade delicacies. The aroma of freshly baked cinnamon rolls seeps into the rows of novelties as you walk the stores’ aisles. That’s where I found her standing in a corner. Just one problem stood in the way of the purchase—her price. Her delicate material and hand stitching by a local lady explained the exuberate price. No, my cow doesn’t have bristly hair and a cold rubbery nose or give milk. Her soft material invites caressing, and her button nose—literally a button nose––is pure cuteness. She’s a vacuum cover.

I walked away after checking the price tag––$70. My prayer, “Well Lord, if you want me to have a cow, I will.” I started down the stairs to the main level of the store––glancing back a few times wondering if I could sew her myself.

At the bottom of the steps, my phone rang. It was my friend, Alice. She only spoke a few words, “You have your cow; don’t bother looking for one.”

Stunned, I glanced at my husband. With tears dripping, I mumbled, “I have a cow!”

God loves me that much to care about a vacuum cover––my wondrous cow. He provides our needs and our wants. He loves us all that much.

 “To him alone who does great wonders, His love endures forever” (Psalm 136:4 NIV).

My cow testifies to His love and great wonders for me.