Sunday, May 22, 2016

Where is God when you sin?

This beautiful post is from a Brother in Christ who is a missionary in Bulgaria. I asked his permission.

My favorite quote~ "The least loving thing you can do is accept them for who they are."

I have raised children who now as adults do not follow Christ. Who mock me by saying that I think they are going to hell. As if I want anyone, even a murderer to end up in hell. Jesus told the parable of the 99 sheep. They are God's children, not mine. We are all God's children first.

I am mocked and attacked. One of them reported us to social services. My 4 pictured above had to remove their clothing and be inspected and interviewed by police, Drs and Social Workers. This is a memory they do not forget.(November 2013) 

The adult children have their own problems that I would never use against them. I am raising 2 children from one of them, and I am ashamed for the girls to hear what she says about me. And they hear how she has lived her life since. 

There is not a day that my mother, Tom and I do not pray for their souls.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Accepting is not Loving

Almost every day, we hear about immorality.  Why?  Because we live in a world of sinners.  I am one of them.

A common response to immorality is to say about the sinner, "We just need to love them and accept them the way they are."  This statement makes no sense to me.  If you do love someone, and they are engaged in willful immorality, how can you possibly accept them the way they are?

If we believe that sin is destructive to the sinner, then we should have every desire to see it not happen.

Imagine a man named Tyler who suffers from substance abuse.  To put it in layman's terms, he's a drunk.  Perhaps something in his genetic makeup causes him to drink too much, or perhaps he is merely the victim of his own bad choices.  Either way, he passes out drunk every night and drinks his breakfast the following morning.

Now, Tyler has two friends.  The first one accepts him the way he is.  He doesn't offer Tyler any help with his substance abuse problem because Tyler was born that way.  He says, "I love Tyler and I accept him the way he is.  We need to be more tolerant of his lifestyle choices and just love him.  If we talk to him about his drinking, it will just drive him away."

The second friend disagrees.  He says, "Tyler is on a path that leads to destruction.  I am going to do everything I can to get him help because I love him."

The first friend will undoubtedly get along better with Tyler. 

The second friend will likely be yelled at by Tyler with phrases like, "Who are you to judge me!?" and "I don't need your help!  There's nothing wrong with me!  I'm happy living this way."

Tyler may end up hating the second friend and loving the first.  Yet,the first friend is an enabler.  He is avoiding difficult conversations for the sake of maintaining their so called friendship.  It is the second friend who is brave enough to face the name calling to make Tyler's life better.

The first friend shows love by accepting or ignoring Tyler's actions.  The result is cowardice and indifference that only makes Tyler's situation worse.  The second friend shows love by not accepting Tyler's actions and offering help.  He gives Tyler a way out by confronting his sin.

The first friend spoke of love and showed none.  The second friend showed love and risked backlash.  Only the second friend really loved Tyler.

If you really love someone, you will confront their sinful behavior.  You will seek to end their immoral lifestyle.

If you really love yourself, you will say nothing in the hope that the sinner will like you.  Self-love can easily be masked as a love for someone else.  True love faces the difficult conversations.

Interestingly, some make the argument that we should accept sinful behavior by referring to Jesus.  Jesus showed great love for sinners.  He let prostitutes touch him.  He ate with swindlers.  He talked with the woman at the well who jumped from sexual partner to sexual partner.  Surely we should emulate His model and let people live however they want to.

Yet, read the text carefully.  Jesus directly confronted the woman at the well for her sexual immorality (John 4:16-19).  The swindlers He ate with gave up their sinful ways (Luke 19).  The prostitute came to Him, not because she wanted acceptance, but because she needed forgiveness (Luke 7).  Jesus tells people to stop sinning (John 5:14), and whey they are persistent in sin, His response is anything but accepting (John 2:13-16).

Jesus did not come to grant acceptance to sinners.  He came to give us a way out of our sin.  Like Tyler's second friend, He was met with hostility by those who did not want to change their lifestyle.  Jesus chose painful love over comfortable acceptance.  He took the harder road.

If you truly love someone, and they are willfully living in immorality, the most loving thing you can do is talk to them about it.  The least loving thing you can do is accept them for who they are.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Mothers Day

My Maternal Grandmother made these. I had them in my closet for 25 years. I "spruced" the frames up with glitter. Now that I'm a Grandma, glitter is my thing! LOL! I hung them up after we de-cluttered the entire house last year ;o) I don't have many of her things.

My  Maternal Grandmother sewed, did needlework, crocheted, knitted. My mom did not know how or want to do any of those things. So everything I've done/do like that, I learned on my own. We did not spend a lot of time with her. I did not realize all of my Grandmother's talents until I was married at 19. I was crying over smocking a dress for my baby Angel, she took them home and finished the pinafores for me. I still have them. I am so dyslexic when it comes to Instructions/Patterns of any kind! (even appliances) I have Instruction/Pattern aversion!

My Paternal Grandmother only did those things if they were needed. And she was very skilled. I have her "compact" sewing machine in a beautiful wooden case, it weighs a ton! She owned a little corner (right on the corner ;o) grocery store, with her house attached. She had no time to create. I was incredibly proud of her. I spent a lot of time with her and she was always very busy. So I had to entertain myself or "work" with her. (dust, clean in the house, pick up trash) Only 2 of my Grandchildren appreciate that I own my own business.

This is my precious mom (right) Shirley and her sister Patricia. They are 18 months apart. My dad was an only child, and mom had only had a sis! My Aunt died 2 years ago. Mom is 83 now. Everyday God gifts her to me here is a blessing!

This Mother's Day was wonderful.
The oldest 4 are so big (Isaiah 12, Kitty will be 13 in June, Lysa will be14 in July and Faith15) The cards the gave me were so touching. Beautifully written.
Last year the cards they chose were both beautifully written AND funny! LOL!! They said "Mom for so many years I could count on you" and "Mom you have been there for me my whole life"!! They just cracked me up because the cards were written for adult children like me to give their mom! So cute! They were very sincere!

Home school Science- Painted Lady Butterfly Larvae came in the mail. (hafta love the internet!) Above they are Pupae. When Faith was little and learned the life cycle of the Butterfly she called the Pupae the "puke bucket"!!!! (the plastic ice cream pails we use for stomach distress)

Have you ever see how much "poo" 5 Larvae can "eliminate"?? Yuck! LOL!!

 6 weeks later~ butterflies!

(all Science photos by Kitty and Isaiah)
Kitty has a great eye for photography too!

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Life and Death

It was my Birthday this month. These are a few of the gifts my 4 oldest blessings found for me at Walmart.

It was also my first born's Birthday this month. (Angel Ruth) She would be 40 this year if she had not gone home with Jesus at 28. We would have teased her about turning 40, just like we would have teased her if she had lived to turn 30. In fact I had a Happy 30th tshirt for that birthday, purchased before she died.
Her younger birthsister is 37, she'll be 40 in only 3 short years. Her younger birthbrother is 35 in September.  They were the 3 musketeers in another lifetime.

Isaiah, our gift from God, is Angel's youngest birth brother, he is 12. She held him lovingly the weeks before she died, it feels like yesterday.

Since Isaiah is our only birth child at home, Grace was going to make up an adoption story for him.

We've gone from having birth/adopted at home, to having adopted only at home, to now having 11 at home and only one is not adopted! Poor guy! No birth parents or lovely adoption stories. ;o) Just a very "old" mom and dad!
It looks funny when we list family!

 More cards and gifts. Lysa made me the sand art and bought the frame. I'm going to put a picture of the oldest (at home) "4" in the frame!
The chocolate was an oopsie! We eat 80% cocao or higher! ;o)

 Lysa made the butterfly. And she found me the coolest travel crochet hook ever!! All my Yarnies, (crochet pals) are jealous!!

 A beautiful new pitcher for my homemade lemonade. (lemons with water, no sugar) I pulverise the lemons so well that the center leaks it out! Faith hates that. Isaiah and I love it!

 My gift to me. The kitchenaid Precise heat mixing bowl!!! I love it! I make homemade yogurt and melt all our chocolate- coconut goodies in it!
So in essence the benefits of it are for our Group Home peeps and the kids! ;o)

 I stir by hand, so I don't attach it to my mixer. It holds the temp 10 hours!!

 This spring we bought these beautiful slate pieces for hanging near the front of the house.

 We don't have headstones at our cemetery, we are buying a granite topped bench, pre- engraved with those who are and will be buried there. There will be 16 cremations, 2 there now.

We also bought one for our Group Home gal "Auntie Sue" who lived with us 16 years before she died. She lived 1958-2003.

I got pregnant soon after she died, I like to think it was because she whispered in God's ear. You see Auntie Sue loved every one of our children. Every week she'd tell her job center that we were getting another baby! LOL!! Imagine the surprise after she went home with Jesus and her Daddy; when MA and SP told these same staff people that I was pregnant! LOL!! No one believed them. They thought we were adopting again. :o)

Monday, April 18, 2016

Bunnies galore!!

 If you click on the picture of "the 4" at the top of the blog it takes you to our blog about our Special Needs family members with more pictures.
Our Lysa bunny at Easter. She'd rather be a lamby! She loves sheep!

                                    Our Kitty bunny

                                             Isaiah bunny

 Faith DID NOT want to do this bunny hat picture- but I begged her! Now that she's 15 she says she looks goofy! LOL!!

                                    Winty the bunny!

                          He's too cute, and too much fun!

                           Violet bunny but the hat is waay big!


                                       And Sassy bunny!

I'm catching up on photos that Kitty and Isaiah took. Since I had been very sick over Easter. Praise God I feel better. But I have to be careful not to over do!

Saturday, April 16, 2016

This and that by Isaiah

                                      (photos all by Isaiah)
My Dad died in 2009. Isaiah was 5. But he'd seen him in the Nursing Home and he remembered him. He was always quiet and polite during the visits at the Nursing Home, unlike my nephew who was 5 years older. But then Isaiah has always had a gift of being wiser than his years.
These cars were my Dad's. My mom gave them to Isaiah. He really likes them.

 He keeps them neatly here after he enjoys them! He's 12 now so he's not really "playing" with them.

 We bought these little plaques when our last 3 boys came home from BG. They hang in Isaiah's room. We call it Isaiah's room but Pauly, Julius, and Jacob also share the 2 sets of bunk beds in there with Isaiah. :o)
This sign above says " It's a whole new world of love and joy!" Because that was exactly how we felt with the boys home.

Isaiah catching a silly sister smiling!

He was experimenting with the camera settings using a yellow tint.
Kitty working on her Science.

These plaques were a pair. We loved the sentiments on this one too. They fit our thoughts perfectly!

 Isaiah's Fenton frogs. We sold a few when we adopted the boys. These did not sell.

 Tom liked the movie Toy Story 1 and Buzz Lightyear. So when Isaiah was born we had a few knick knacks of Buzz. This is a Precious Moments musical snow globe. From time to time Isaiah winds it up. :o)
When his 5 brothers came home he was ages 7-8 and he called them his LGMs.

 This was my Dad's Army coat put away in plastic for many years for special occasions. Isaiah loves it. He only knew his Grandpa a few years, so he's glad to have it. Especially since he hopes to join the Air Force. (poor Isaiah I had been so sick with a cold, no time to trim his hair)
Grandma offered him a few precious family items. But he declined. He wasn't sure how he'd keep them when he joins the Air Force. We sold almost every antique we had from family when we adopted. So "things" don't hold much meaning for him. He has an incredible memory and tells me happy memories far back that amaze me. Those are what we cherish. :o)

I can't believe he's 12 already. The time has passed in the blink of an eye. Every day I cherish our moments together. He is an amazing young man.
God has truly Blessed him and us.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Winter Sunshine aka Clifford the big yellow dog!

I am recovering from a horrible cold. It has been one of the worst I've had in ages. It kinda wiped out my month of March.
We have lots of news so I better get writing!
 We did get some end of March pictures of Winty to "see" how much he's grown.......................and he HAS grown!!
These pictures were age 12 weeks and 25 pounds.

He's so long in the picture above- here is his head! LOL!!
Can you tell he is just a big love bug! Super gentle, relaxed.

                                            12 weeks

                                              8 weeks

                                               12 weeks

                                                    8 weeks
I miss my big boy Snow. But I don't miss him as a pup, he was a horrible puppy!! He was incredibly hard to train and drove me crazy until he matured and mellowed out.

Winty is the easiest puppy we've ever had. Super easy to potty train and teach commands. And he's very quiet!! (our Martha 2 yrs choc lab is very whiny :o(
God has truly blessed us with a new dog that fills Snow's big paws. He can never be my "Snowsy" boy- but he Blesses our lives at every turn! Thank you Lord for Winty's companionship.

If you get time click on the picture of our "4" (kids) at the top of the blog and see our newest family member sent by God! (A new post on my other blog)
Hope everyone is healthy and enjoying Spring! We are quite cold here- even snow today!

Sunday, March 20, 2016

New depths of BELIEVING and living FAITH

 Kitty wrote in her journal~
"Dedicated to my Mom, who brings JOY into my life (thanks to God) and makes every moment of my life special."
This sweet girl makes every day brighter for us all!

Photo above, I made parfaits. Whole milk Kefir, homemade applesauce with cinnamon (no sweetener) and coconut milk fat whipped into whipping cream.
Last Thursday night I lived my Faith to a level I had never done before. A man was breaking into our home at 2 a.m. while I was outside putting our puppy out. Winty can't hold it all night till 16 weeks. (He's 11 weeks now) Puppy bladder!

 This is my favorite Emma Bridgewater pattern. I think because it reminds me of the Desert Rose pattern of the San Francisco China my Great Grandmother had. Also its British- very cottagy cosy!
I thought the man breaking in was Tom. He knows Winty's potty schedule, and I thought he was coming back from the grocery. I often get upset when we run out of things and Tom in guilt ;o) runs out later. Altho usually not that late anymore. It all depends on his schedule, if MA has to go potty or SP can't sleep. It could end up a late trip.

I called out with the kennel gate open towards the side door about 15' away, "What are you doing?" He had the screen door open and was bent over trying to?? He did not reply. So I said it again. He backed out from the screen door. He looked and came towards me. He had a knife.

 We started our Easter decorations in February. Crafts from Oriental Trading they love to put together.
Oh how I LOVE Easter! How I LOVE Jesus Christ! How I LOVE God the Father and The Holy Spirit! Truly deep down LOVE with all my heart, my soul, my mind. It makes one so JOYFUL!
When Winty and I were out I was wearing my cap that had a light in the brim to "see" in the semi dark. I had gone to the eye Dr that same day and she told me my "good" eye had decreased in vision quite a bit. I need 6X improvement on my glass to that one eye. The right eye is still legally blind. My glasses are already "coke bottle" thick. I was lamenting over the added thickness. With my cataracts my night vision is gone. Our neighbors irritating light was for once a blessing! PRAISE God! But I was wishing I had my new glasses.

The man walked towards me quickly with the knife. I could tell he was high and not in his right mind. I really didn't want to be killed by a man who'd probably not even remember what he'd done.  I could only think of how I did not want to be stabbed. I backed away but I was slow. I'm 59 now I don't/ can't move fast. I have a neurological disease, my legs/feet/balance have a mind of their own. I had to get back into the dog potty kennel. I had opened it and stepped out about a foot.

This is my favorite/only plate from Ireland. I love the scene. It looks so Irish/UK. Altho I don't love the Ocean. I love lakes. :o) MN is the land of 10,000 (+) lakes :o) It hangs over my bed.
The man was young. About early 20s. He was dressed nice, nice pants, jacket, shirt. He looked a lot like one of the children who grew up here. In that moment, I felt incredibly sad for him. But I had to move quickly or he'd beat me to the kennel gate. And he nearly did. Even though he was right there and it looked like he'd win, because he was right there, I just believed I still needed to do it and I shut the gate. As I was closing the kennel gate we were face to face, the knife close enough to cut me. But he didn't. We looked at each other face to face through the 6' high chain link. (the kennel runs 18' along the back of the house and is 5' wide) He came so fast, and I am/was slow. I knew he could flip the kennel door open easily and come in. But he didn't. PRAISE God!! Later Tom said I hooked the latch one pole behind the pole we should hook it to, making it harder for someone on the outside to open. PRAISE God! PRAISE God!

Poor Winty had not had a chance to go potty. I "ran" dragging him behind. Trying not to let the man get him or stab him. If the man had Winty, I would have had to let go. The man must have given up coming after me, a real possibility since the kennel has 2 ends. But he didn't seem to know and THANK God! both gates were closed and I was running up the steps to our 2nd floor bedroom. PRAISE God!!
I never looked back.

This sign hangs over my bed. It once said "We pine for the north" because of our love for northern MN. But years ago I re-painted it to say "Set Your Mind on Things Above". The dark blue background has sparkles like stars :o)
I put Winty in his crate and called 911. They said they were coming. I ran downstairs to find Tom. He was awake on his computer, doing updates. I told him what happened. He told me the lights on my cap made it hard for anyone to see my face. So I knew that was why the man did not look into my eyes. PRAISE God!!
The police searched and nothing was found except foot prints in fresh snow. We then realized if I had not seen the man he could have broken into our house while Tom was in the living room on the computer. That would have been much worse. PRAISE God! The Lord's shield of protection was around us. PRAISE God!

 My little "shrine" shelf above my bed, to the memory of my girls Angel Ruth, Joy Elizabeth and Molly Mee Ran. Foot print/hair/hand prints from Joy on the left.
As I reflected on the whole thing, I thought of the verses from Matthew to Mark to Luke to John.
The Beautiful Words of Christ, each time, every time inviting us~ "If you BELIEVE" "If you have FAITH". Even Faith the size of a mustard seed. That is all He asks. Is that too much? Can I refuse that invitation? No.
I did have FAITH as I sought safety that night, I do have FAITH, and now I know I can have it in any situation. I BELIEVE His promises are real, I BELIEVE He never forsakes me. Even if I had been stabbed or killed or anything by that man, my FAITH held strong because I knew God was there. God was with me. He LOVED me. He was caring for me. It's not about fighting back it's about protection. When we BELIEVE, when we have FAITH we are ALWAYS protected. PRAISE God! PRAISE God!!

Luke 12:4-5
 “And I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!"

This Duvet was from Emma Bridgewater on sale. :o) I buy their "seconds" and sales and get a pretty good deals. :o) I thought my AKC British Lab puppy on a British Duvet was an appropriate picture. I submitted it to them to use. He's a poster boy now! LOL! I need new pictures, he's much bigger!
Please pray for this young man. Please pray for his soul. For no one is hopeless. There is always hope.

I have raised children who are now on the same path. One was just released from prison 3/16. And the longest he is ever out is a few months before he re-offends. He's spent the most of 15 years in prison. He is my birth son, he will be 35 this year.

God, Lord Heavenly Father please save their souls. I will add this young man to my prayer list.
God is GOOD!