Soul Aches

Fifty-five years ago on February 7, she left five children without a mom. At the snap of a finger, their lives changed never to be the same.

I was one of those little ones that had to face change, and the part I can’t get away from is a promised birthday party on February 9th that never happened. Even then, God had me in the palm of His hands and I didn’t have a clue of how to plead for help for my bleeding heart. My soul ached.

Yes, all that is true and a part of my story, but it did not end there. Like I said, God had my back in 1964 and I was clueless, but today, I know who I am in Christ and a Birthday is the least of the things I seek on this earth in 2019. I long to lead others to Christ as their soul ache finds healing.

Look what the Lord has done. He found me when I didn’t know I was lost. He has been my mother, my counselor, my friend, my everything. In my lowest state, He has been my strength, my shelter, and my refuge. Who would have known from such a humble upbringing that one could go from not knowing, to running after God?  I am evidence that God can and will chase you down in order to lead and show you the way. His love is boundless. Just as a parent or a sweet friend that decides to surprise you in some way, God can cause your name to be randomly picked from a list to be presented a beautiful basket of birthday flowers on the day that you believed at one time didn’t matter. Only God, He is always there. WOW! Psalm 139 ❤️

Gifted

Jeremiah 29:11

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” I love the way God tells us how well He knows His plans for us. He actually declares His knowledge of these individual plans for each of us. His purpose is to help us be a success with a purpose in mind. Thank You Abba Father for taking such good care of Your children.

I’m sharing a beautiful piece written by a wise and observant mother. Someone needs to read this. Enjoy the read

This week is Special Education Awareness week. I am so thankful for both my girls and the different gifts God gave them. Faith has Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, and Dysgraphia…..yes we see them as gifts in our family now. We have seen how they cause her to think and learn differently which has resulted in her beautiful, creative and witty mind. (Walt Disney was Dyslectic….so if she has only a fraction of his success we are in good shape) Faith has such a sarcastic sense of humor! She likes to sing funny songs that tell stories. She loves to watch Documentaries and build things. She doesn’t do well in loud social situations but get her alone and she will talk your ear off! The journey of learning is a difficult road for Faith but education is making huge strides in helping kids who need special Education.

Ava was given the gift of what our culture sees as a typical smart little mind. She is very academic and loves school. This has resulted in a trustworthy little achiever with an excellent work ethic. She has a compassionate heart. Whatever she sets her mind to, she can achieve! She has a speech Apraxia which makes it challenging for her to pronounce words and sounds. Because of this, she has compensated by using her face and eyes to express what she is wanting to say. This has resulted in her being a beautiful little actress.

Because of my kid’s stories I wanted to share the following:

When you have a typical child, you feel reasonably assured that class participation and decent study habits will result in good grades. These kids have close friends. They get invited to participate in social things like dances and weekend gatherings. They make the teams, auditioned organizations and clubs.

But when you have a child or children with certain differences, this is often not the case. Learning may take longer, both academically and socially. Despite their tremendous efforts, results are often a fraction of their peers and social acceptance is fleeting, setting them up for painful comparisons and bitter frustration. Instead of a fun and fulfilling experience, the school can become a breeding ground for depression and anxiety, and assignments a battleground at home. It is exhausting for parent and child alike.

This is the week of SPED (Special Education), Autism, Dyslexia, and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) awareness. For all the children who struggle every day to succeed in a world that does not recognize their gifts and talents, and for those who are walking beside them, please let this be a gentle reminder to be kind and accepting of ALL people. Recognize that the “playing field” is not always a level surface. Children who learn differently are not weird. They are merely gifted in ways that our society does not value. Yet they want what everyone else wants: To be accepted.

Our world would be far less beautiful without uniquely beautiful children ❤️

Written by Shannon Bailey

I spent many years in the classroom with sweet little bodies with the gift of being different and I loved every minute.  To this day I notice the gifts in children.  They are all made in Christ’s image so I know he had a plan from the beginning. His very heartbeat causes our hearts to beat in sync with His. Thank you God for spreading yourself over all Your creation just because.

No, To God?

Oh, the sweet life of a twenty-one-year-old.  He was so active on purpose and we were proud of him.  He made me laugh so hard the night he left to go out.  That was my last time to see him dance around and spit out jokes.  So much had taken place and I was remembering all that he was involved in, but I just knew God would intervene and raise him up. There were no tears, but eyes wide open as to not miss seeing him when he would get up and walk.

I paced back and forth while Mike made phone calls to family and friends.  Still, in shock, we walked over to the atrium in the hospital and leaned over when I heard Mike say: “who have I not called?”  Instantly, the Lord said, “You have not called Me.”  WOW!  At that moment we found ourselves in route to the chapel to pray and ask for forgiveness.  All we could do then was trust God for the outcome.  We believed God healed Josh that day when we prayed because he gained sensation in his legs before surgery and all. Moving forward was crucial and I believed there was a purpose in his pain, and there is power in purpose.

I had already said ‘No” in a roundabout way, meaning, this is not true, not happening.  I had no idea that I was actually saying no while God was saying trust me.  Josh was alive and we were able to see him, feel him in the bed instead of a coffin.  I did remind God that Josh was an active church member, choir member and helped with the youth.  He played semi-pro football and loved to make people laugh.  He worked hard every day and we were so proud of him.  Our daughter’s response was, “I should have been the one in the accident, not Josh.”  I quickly told her that God was in control and not to speak like that.

I knew I needed help.  My ‘No” was not a “no I don’t believe God can fix this,” it was “No this is the wrong accident.”  It was a dream.  Car accidents were not my friend.  Please!  I have found my self now for seventeen years wandering around and around waiting for night to turn into day and it’s still night.  No disrespect, just being truthful and it feels good to get it out because I’m human.  I always need help.  For example, when I dedicated Josh to the Lord I had no idea all that I was saying yes to and agreeing to.  God knew this day would come but it wasn’t my time to know until it actually happened.

I know any mother will understand my heart.  There is no blaming, or pointing a finger, it is just accepting the fact that this is real.  Well, one of the good things to come out of it all is my love for the word.  I loved God’s word all along but I really love His word now.  God helped me work out my own stuff.   Forgive me for not instantly saying “yes” to Your will when my world stopped.  Thank You, Lord, for Redemption.  “Where would I be?  You only know, I’m glad you see through eyes of love.  A hopeless case, and empty place if not for GRACE.” (Clint Brown)  My tears are gathered.  “I waited patiently for the Lord, And he inclined to me and heard my cry.”  Psalm 40:1     jramey

 

 

Get The Drought Out of You

Coming out of the drought sometimes will cause what we see to be different from what we hear.  It is usually that simple solution to the problem that we are walking all over and then we finally see it.  We missed it because we were mumbling or fretting over it all.  None the less, we must start somewhere to come out and move forward.

Celebrate the small start to your journey.  Even celebrate the hurting parts.  Hang in there and be proud of hanging in there and sustain your success.  Shout over the small stuff.  It will grow into something huge, and spectacular enough that you can’t miss it.  So, the only way to get out of the drought is to get the drought out of you.  Celebrate your storm.  Don’t run from the rain you prayed for.                                                                                             Don’t fear,  God has this. Look to Him, The Word, for a cool drink of water.

Isaiah 43:20  – Yes, I will make rivers in the dry wasteland so my chosen people can be refreshed.

 

Is There A Doctor In The House?

Today is the day to make a difference in someone’s life.  Yes, it has been said over and over in more ways than one to be kind, speak life, pray for those around you and so on and on.  The ocean could be filled by the messages that have been taught and preached on how to treat others. They’re all around us noticing our actions, listening to our words, our tones and our countenances.  You could be a lifeline for the lady in the grocery aisle or the man bagging your groceries.  So, having said that, Is there a doctor in the house?

What would happen if just once we could get on the same page with the word that we study daily or what is preached weekly and get busy holding up our neighbor’s hands until something happens?  You know, like when Aaron held up Moses’ hands after growing tired during the battle.  The battle was over if Moses’ hands came down.  Aaron and Hur were the doctors for Moses that day and literally for all the people.  Again, is there a doctor in the house?  (Exodus 17:11-13).

Who will be nourishment for the hungry,  water to the thirsty, a counselor for the emotional, a good listener, a builder for the homeless, a healer for the sick, faithful to a spouse, rehab for the addictive, parents to the fatherless and motherless, a voice for the voiceless, protection for the unsecured, to name a few?  As Diana Ross sings, “Reach out and touch somebody’s hand, make this world a better place if you can.”  It may be a smile instead of a touch, or a card in the mail, although we have the technology, mail is somewhat more personal.  We have the power to set the stage for kindness or evil to take place wherever we are.  It is a mindset people, a sweet fragrance that we have access to just for the asking.  Be that sweet aroma of Christ.  (2Cor. 2:15)  Time is short my friend.  Is there a doctor in the house?  jramey

Tis The Season

We are always in a season or about to face another one like winter in a couple of days.  Each season has its purpose and is God’s creative way of cleansing the earth. I can not imagine the earth refusing the purge of each season. I have found that what matters most is the condition of the heart and how we juggle the season at hand. ‘This is a time to reach out and pull the family close and flow with God’s plan for this season.

Everyday is a blessing and planned by You, oh God.  Help me to always  trust in You even when the days are uncertain and painful.  You remain sovereign and King of my heart.  ❤️

So, for now I will worship You, no matter what season we are in,  I choose to rest in You.

I love You Lord, and I lift my voice to worship You, Oh my soul rejoice.  Take joy my King in what you hear, let it be a sweet, sweet sound in your ear.”  (Petra)

Jer. 29:11

The Red Coat

It was mid-calf length with a cute round collar and buttons.  Boy, did I ever love that coat?  My mom would say “red is your color, Judy.”   She thought I was beautiful in that coat.

I remember the day my sweet Dad brought it home.  It was my first wool coat and to this day I can wear wool without any problems. I guess you are wondering what department store he bought the coat from. Well, he worked for people that had plenty and would recycle clothing by putting the discarded items at the mailbox or curbside. So,  this particular day after work he picked up the items as he did often because he had his girls in mind.

Well, you guessed it, my sweet, sweet Dad came home with arms loaded and asked me to try the red coat on. I don’t remember the other items, but that coat was mine. I didn’t have fancy accessories to wear with it, but that red coat meant the world to me.  It was priceless. My dad was always thinking of his family just as our Heavenly Father is thinking of us. God is always for us and never leaves us to do without. He is constantly drawing us near to Him.

How fortunate I am to have a Dad of such treasure. His heart’s love is priceless just as the red coat he gave.  He is my earthly father that loves his family deeply.  God’s love is priceless and is waiting for us.

Today, my treasure of a Dad met his Heavenly Father after a long life of ninety years.  He laid down to sleep in his earthly home but woke up in heaven. He is “home where the streets are golden and every chain is broken.” I can imagine him whispering to God, “oh, I wanna go, oh, I wanna go home, where every fear is gone, I’m in Your open arms where I belong, Home.” (Home, Chris Tomlin, paraphrased)

I’ll always remember that red wool coat.  That’s  just one great memory I have of my selfless dad.  He is home. Until we meet again, my sweet daddy.  ❤️

With My Whole Heart

“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”  Jeremiah 29:13

You know the story where King Uzziah was so blessed and highly favored of God, right?  2 Chronicles 26:5 reveals that Uzziah continued to seek God during Zechariah’s days of encouragement and was greatly blessed as long as he did so.  Well,  as you can see, his success didn’t just happen but came because of an encourager who inspired the king to seek God throughout his reign.  Who wouldn’t want someone in their life to push them to truly seek with their whole heart?

If we ever needed help and encouraging it is now.  Zechariah is a good example of a spiritually minded friend that we all can use.  From my own experience, I have found myself holding on to my pain instead of sharing with a prayerful friend in Christ.  Yes, indeed, I have needed a Zechariah in my life.  I remember hearing an old friend pour out her heart by shouting a call out to the prodigals to come home.  The moment I heard her shout, she had my undivided attention because I could identify with the prodigal child.  In the past I had heard the hearts of judgemental Christians, I had rubbed shoulders with cold-hearted Christians, and had Christians tell me to turn my back and walk away from my prodigal.  The list could go on.  Because of these responses, I began to keep silent, pray silently, cry silently, and feel alone.

That day I heard my friend praying, “prodigal, come home,” and as she continued the appeal by quoting 2-Cor. 5:18-21, my heart began to swell with the anointing to pray for my prodigal whom I had been praying and grieving over for nineteen years.  Nineteen years is a long time but that’s what happens when you stay silent or feel that you have to. Yes, everyone knew my story but,  when I tried to share and ask for prayer I was always bombarded with questions and whys instead of a prayer on the spot. This girl’s prayer pushed me to pray out like I had never before.  In 2-Cor 5 Christ is giving us the task to rescue, not to be angry at the actions and behavior of our prodigals.  We are ambassadors for Christ and have the power in us to speak the word over our children until they look like the word, talk like the word and walk like the word.  Whether they are in the will of God or a prodigal we still have the power in us to pray over them.  His appeal to us is to go get them.  This prayer shook me in my tracks.  We all need that one encourager from time to time.  The key is to continue seeking God and do it with all our heart.  I knew in order for me to continue seeking, I would have to fix my eyes on Him and not my pain.  Seek – Him – with – your – whole – heart.  Do you need a Zechariah in your life?

As long as Uzziah’s eyes were fixed on God he prospered.  Why would he ever want to change his blessed life?  That’s exactly what happened, he began to get relaxed and comfortable in his blessings, and little by little slipped into an ideology state of mind. Zechariah’s wisdom and encouragement were no longer enough.  Uzziah slowly started losing control, lost possessions, lost his reign, and integrity.  He ended up with leprosy and when he died, instead of many accolades, all that was spoken over Uzziah was, “he had leprosy.”  Like we do so many times, we make a plan and we think that we have all the answers.  Uzziah was so blinded by his idol worship that he couldn’t see what was ahead.  God had a plan when He told us to seek Him and do it with our whole heart.  He meant it for our good.  No, No, my friend, God just smiles when we try to take control and allows us to continue until we have learned to stop worshiping our idols.

Because of this great bible story, I have been reminded of how big God is and how he knows everything about me.  He knows who to send by to encourage me, and He knows who I should encourage.  Most of all, I have learned that I should never get trapped in my hurt, my trials or my tears, but run with all my might to the throne with my petitions. I know that being trapped in my “stuff” will only lead to some type of leprosy.  We don’t have to choose leprosy, or whatever takes us out.   I have been encouraged to continue to seek with my whole heart and trust God’s plan.

 

Hidden Idols

Well, I have missed writing over the last few weeks and wanted to catch up and share my heart.  Sometimes as we deal with life it can take us away from where our heart wants to be, but we can always find a way of escape and move on out of the rut we find ourselves in.  With that being said, I want to share something God dropped into my heart during Sunday School a few weeks back.   ( 1Cor. 10:13)

Motherhood is a season in one’s life that takes them to a place they didn’t plan to go.  That newborn is the most important being during this time.  Many times a mother will open her eyes to a chapter where all the efforts and devotion is for that child, their clothing, social parties, sports, dance, college, and success. Family and friends may suffer along with becoming bitter in deeply rooted unforgiveness for lack of attention from the mother during this time.  It is never the intent of a sweet loving mother to cause pain and emotional stress to the ones she loves.  Emotional people make little emotional people.  How is it that blindness can set in when a young mother is playing the new mother card?

Her goal is to show the world what she can accomplish on her own.  While participating in the community activities and events like church, PTO fundraisers, mission projects, voting and all those things that make up a village, she finds herself falling apart with teenagers and a tired working husband who is gone all the time, then wonders how she got to this place.  Sometimes during this part of the journey, she will blame others for her stressed out schedule of daily events, causing her to become angry or maybe sick.  Some will seek counsel and accept the fact that they made some wrong turns along the way and then move on to getting things back in order.

What would you do if this person just happens to be you?  How free do you want to be?  How healthy do you want your journey to be?  How can we make the journey spiritually, emotionally, physically stable and stay balanced?  I believe there is a way to escape all the things that drag us down and hold us hostage.  There is no place for idols in our lives. Deep rooted hurt and anger will lead us to more of the same.  Seek God, identify the problem, be accountable, lose the pride and be Christlike.  Thank you, Jesus, for making a way of escape for us as we love our children without worshiping them.

“There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able: but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”  1 Cor. 10:13

 

 

Wildflowers From Heaven

Today I’m sharing a sweet card from a teacher that I worked with a while back.  I have read this card numerous times over the years since the year 2003.   You know the kind of cards that just hang around in your Bible because they have such an impact on your heart?   My heart is warmed every time I read it, not for the content in the card, but for the heart from which it comes.  Today I say thank you for always reaching outward to touch others.  You have touched me for a lifetime.  Thank you, Donna Taylor.

Dear Judy,

Just a note to let you know I am praying for you and your precious son.  How hard it must be for your son to face these days of recovery again, and yet how precious it is that he has these days.  I can only begin to imagine his discouragement.  But even without knowing him, I know that he is truly adored by our Father.  While the enemy would want him to think otherwise, just as with Job, the Lord’s face is turned fully towards your dear son.  The Lord is not letting go of him.  I will continue to pray that he will look to the love of the Father above and daily turn from the lies that the enemy is most certainly pouring on him.

Though through the world’s eyes it may not look as though God is watching over all that is happening.  In God’s eyes is the reflection of your sweet boy.  “What the world may see as weeds to be destroyed and cast aside, we, his children see as wildflowers from heaven.

Much Love to you,

Donna Taylor

I received this after a second car accident my son was involved in after his spinal cord injury.  How timely and precious to me.Matt. 13: 28-29, jar