Thursday, February 24, 2011

His Eye is On the Sparrow

I now understand why older people remember past years so well.

They mark them with trials and tribulations.

We are now those people who categorize their life events
 as before, after or during certain trials,
like The Winter with 117 Inches of Snow,
followed by the Flood of '97,
Miscarriage, 3 Moves in 3 Summers,
The Year We Moved to the Farm,
The Year We Moved to Town and
The Year I was Diagnosed with Cancer,
not in that order.

During another time of severe testing in my life,
I was visited in the waiting room of a hospital by an older Christian woman.

She hugged me and sat with me for a little while.
Then she pulled out this picture.

She felt so impressed to share a certain message with me,
she had ripped this page out of her book on the way to visit me.

As she held out this picture, she read these verses:

Matthew 10:29-31
Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin?
And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will.
But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.

She prayed with me, gave me another hug and was on her way.
I have saved this picture and cherished her care for eight years.

She also taught me something else.
People shy away from comforting others in their sufferings,
because we don't know what to say.

Mary taught me, you don't have to say or do a lot
to greatly comfort those that are hurting.
Just listen to the Lord's leading.

On the 8th day of our Project Isaiah 61:1 the Lord gave Scott the theme
"It's a New Day for Hope."
I dug in my Hope Chest and pulled out this picture.
Eight years later, His eye is still upon me,
and I am still comforted.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Diversions During Trials

On Wednesday, after two and a half days of our trial,
the kids started to bicker slightly.

I sat down and reminded them that Satan
would love to tear our family apart when we are hurting.

It's too easy to let burdens pull you down,
instead of letting them turn your gaze up.
I encouraged the kids to be extra patient,
extra kind, extra careful with words.

Jon took action.

He grabbed tablecloths and sheets,
pieces of trim we still haven't nailed to the walls yet,
my broom handle, and every other stick he could find.
(You might recognize the tablecloths from this meal.)

He constructed a tipi for himself,
in the fashion of the Sioux from North Dakota,

and a Yakama mat lodge from a tribe native to Washington for Rebekah.

The kids spent time reading, playing, resting,
and speaking kindly to one another for the next few days.

I was so thankful for this diversion. 
Often, during the past eight days,
 I reminded myself that as important
 as my work was to help free an innocent man,
I'm still a Mommy.

I made myself stop and play, talk, listen, hug and kiss.
Then I'd go back to my computer and my phone,
and fight for an innocent man.

Yesterday afternoon, the Lord answered our prayers for relief.
My work was over for a time, the outcome is with the Lord
for this first step of the process.

I crawled into that tipi with Rebekah,
watched a movie, ate some Dots that were supposed to be for a Chemistry project,
and thanked the Lord for a diversion and for a  period of relief.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


On Monday, February 14th,
when most of the world was enjoying cards, chocolates and flowers,
a believer very dear to us was arrested on  false charges,
and locked up in jail.

He's looking at 2 to 60 years
 for a crime he didn't commit.
We were quickly thrown into the real world,
where Christians can be falsely accused,
their Constitutional rights denied,
and we have to avail every
power in heaven and on earth for justice to be served.

Early on, the Lord gave me a verse in Isaiah as my theme.

I knew I needed to walk in the Spirit.
Morning prayer and devotions with the Lord could not be put aside.
His guidance must be sought first.

Since many people are affected,
much time is spent on the phone encouraging, researching, interviewing,
compiling, praying, helping, talking, praying, crying and praying more.

Because I have older kids, they all immediately pitched in,
without being asked, to help with
housework and meals so I could attend to my work.

On Thursday, I walked outside for the first time in days,
and took a deep breath of cedar-scented air.

It was as if I hadn't been outside in ten years.

Today, Tuesday Feb. 22nd
by the grace of God,
we've made it through eight days.
The Lord has rallied support from many believers to pray,
encourage and help in many little, precious ways.
He has daily spoken to us and given us verses to guide and direct us.

Each time we have felt we are in the bottom of Joseph's pit,
with no way out,
He showers us with fresh blessing, mercy and grace.

We know some day, by faith,
we will be able to say, like Joseph,

Genesis 50:20

But as for you, you meant evil against me;
but God meant it for good,
in order to bring it about as it is this day,
to save many people alive.

We're in physical, spiritual and emotional agony
as we wrangle with the immensity of this trial.
But, our faith rests in the Lord.

Each day, we wake and the Lord has given Scott a theme or a prayer.

Today, we are asking for relief.
Each day the complexities and the burdens grow greater
and we are feeling the need for a little relief.

Thank you for your prayers,
we feel upheld by the Lord and His people.

Please, continue to pray.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Our Anchor is Holding

During this past week of severe testing,
we have been upheld by His victorious right arm.

Each day we wake with our ever-present trial,
and His ever-present help.

When we again are stopped by another block in the road,
He helps us to climb over,
walk around,
go through or
dig under.

He has gone before us. 
We look back and see His whispers and His thoughts prepared us,
for such a time as this.

We are not distraught, but hard-pressed.
It seems impossible,
and we plead for miracles.

Praise God that we serve One who specializes in miracles!

Please do not stop praying.
In fact, we ask you to increase.

This has been our theme and we ask you to pray with us:
1.  That the Truth be Found
2.  That the Truth be Told
3.  That the Truth be Believed

A dear sister, Jill, sent the words to this song in a comment.
I wanted to share this quartet with you.

Thank you all for your emails, your comments, your affirmations of love,
your fervent prayers and your silent support. 

We feel them all.

I think this is one of the hardest things we've faced.
Many have been concerned and asked about my cancer.
Truthfully, I haven't thought about it in weeks.
My cancer is nothing compared to this.

Yet,  despite the suffering, many times during each day,
 those of us involved
have broken down in tears of joy and worship,
as we see the Lord reveal His plan to us,
and grace us His presence.

We are like Moses and the children of Israel
 huddled on the shores of the Red Sea,
with the enemy behind us.

But, we know something they didn't know
as they huddled in terror,
the Lord WILL part the seas,
and we WILL walk through on dry ground.

Until that time,
we endure the storm because
Our Anchor Holds.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

When it Rains, it Pours

The other day, I blogged on about my broken heart.

Today, I'm reminded -

When it Rains, it Pours.

I was gathered at the kitchen table with my two youngest children,
praying at the exact time prayer was needed
 for our initial, heart-breaking trial.

The phone rang.
Another trial was born.

A chorus we sing at Bible Camp reverbrated through my soul-

"When troubles and sorrows multiply,
I won't ask the reason why,
Strength is mine only heaven can afford.

In the arms of sweet deliverance,
gunna' lay my heavy burden down,
and with my Lord I'll abide...
When at last my travelin’ days are done,
In the land somewhere beyond the sun,
In the arms of sweet deliverance,
In the arms of sweet deliverance I shall rest by and by."

We are too tired to weep,
too busy praying to sleep.

We are minute by minute depending on the Lord for strength and deliverance.

The best part of the rains?

They're followed by rainbows.

We're living for the promise of the rainbow,
upheld by the victorious right hand of our loving Lord
and strengthened by the prayers of His beautiful people.


The Lord gave both my husband and I the same verse this morning
when we awoke feeling the burden is too great to bear.

Matthew 11:30
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

So, we're learning to lay that burden down,
but still waiting, praying and pleading for
Sweet Deliverance.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Flowers, Chocolates and Tears

On Valentine's Day, we love to celebrate love. 

We love to celebrate with flowers.
I celebrated with flowers.
My husband of almost 25 years
makes sure they're a part of our yearly tradition.
Last year I had the energy to write a truly romantic post.

We love to celebrate with special treats.
I celebrated with special treats. 
 My daughter, Gracie, baked and decorated these
and successfully kept them hidden until the holiday.

My husband already had purchased two heart-shaped
boxes full of chocolates we previously feasted on together.

We love to celebrate with loving, sentimental cards.
I celebrated with cards.
 Beka was the Mail Lady, delivering cards with great animation.

We celebrated with special drinks,
toasting our family's love and devotion with sparkling apple cider.

But this year, my heart wasn't in it.

My heart is broken and shattered,
but I smiled and kept going
because that's what Christians do.

We keep going.

We keep breathing.

We keep praying.

The Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words,
when our only prayers are desperate cries for the Lord's help.

I can't share the details of our grief,
it involves someone we love deeply,
so we ask you to help bear our burden
and pray
and then,
pray some more.

When going through cancer with my dear friend Kari,
now in my own struggle with incurable thyroid cancer -
I learned a valuable lesson.
You keep going on with life.
You act as normal as possible,
for the kids,
for yourself,
 to keep you busy so you don't despair beyond hope.
We shared the news  with the kids,
we prayed together, we cried together.

And, we still celebrated Valentine's Day.

 I was reminded of how painful holidays can be.
The arrows in those cheery red hearts
 penetrated my heart and soul. 
Some pain cannot be covered with chocolates and flowers. 

Sorrow can be so  great we can hardly partake in the joys around.
Yes, even when we are happily married and love our spouse. 
Yes, even when our homes are filled with children we love and adore.

My husband, my earthly rock and fortress,
even defined our sorrow as "too much to bear,"
even though we both know the Lord is in control.

In the midst of sorrows like sea billows,
I know it is well with our souls.
I know nothing can pluck us from His hand,
and nothing can separate us from His love.

This Valentine's Day we celebrated

Romans 5:5 , "Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us."

Romans 8:39, "nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."

1 John 4:9, "In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him."

Jude 1:21, "Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life."

With tears and prayers,
we celebrated by
 desperately depending on
the enduring
love of our Heavenly Father.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

MM Meditation - What God Cannot Do, #2

In May, I wrote a meditation titled What God Cannot Do. Tonight, reading A. W. Tozer's Paths to Power, I discovered Tozer had a list of his own.

Failure to distinguish the part of God from the part of man in salvation has prevented countless seekers from finding peace, and left whole sections of the church of Christ powerless for long periods of time.

Let it be boldly stated that there are some things which only God can do, and for us to attempt to do them is to waste our efforts; and there are other things which only man can do, and for us to ask God to do them is to waste our prayers.  It is vain for us to try to do the work which can only be done by sovereign grace; it is equally vain for us to implore God to do what has been commanded by sovereign authority.

In the things-which-God-cannot-do category is this:


In our efforts to magnify grace we have so preached the truth as to convey the impression that repentance is a work of God.  This is a grave mistake...God has commanded all men to repent;  it is a work which only they can do.  It is morally impossible for one person to repent for another.  Even Christ could not do this.  He could die for us, but He cannot do our repenting for us.


Faith is a gift of God, to be sure, but whether or not we shall act upon that faith lies altogether within our own power.  True belief requires that we change our attitude toward God.

Unbelief is a great sin; or more accurately stated, it is an evidence of sins unconfessed.  Repent and believe is the order.  Faith will follow repentance, and salvation will be the outcome.


Among the things which only God can do, of first importance to us is the work of redemption. Salvation is personal.  Salvation is the work of God in the heart, made possible by the work of God on the Cross.

No man can forgive his own sins; no man can regenerate his own heart; no man can declare himself justified and clean.   All this is the work of God in man, flowing out of the work which Christ has already done for man.                    A. W. Tozer


Friday, February 11, 2011

I Saw the Lord's Breath

 I was driving, praying and crying out to the Lord
concerning trials friends and family are experiencing.

As I entered a small valley,
the glory of the Lord shone around
and I felt His comforting presence.

The gloomy and gray winter fog had lifted, 
revealing the Cascade silhouette.
The bright sun sparkled the grass,
the trees and the shrubs
the Lord had frosted with His breath.

We mark our existence in the cold by exhaling
 a puffy cloud of our breath.
A simple thrill, I still exclaim,
"Look, I can see my breath!"

We can see the Lord's breath in the cold, too.

Job 37:10
"By the breath of God frost is given..."


He had walked before me that morning,

leaving evidence of His nearness on His creation.

The path was marked with His breath,

the leaves showed evidence of His touch.

Evergreens, already an eternal symbol, 
were changed by His presence. 

Flowers crystalized by the the breath of God.

And there I am,
worshipping because He walked before me,
not just in Creation, but in suffering.

As I'm capturing the Lord's breath,
I'm enjoying the eternal life breathed into me
when I became a new creation in Christ.

Job 33:4
The Spirit of God has made me,
And the breath of the Almighty gives me life.

Did you feel His presence in your life today?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Crooked Places Made Straight

Over the holidays I was having some troubles.

My candles were all crooked,
leaning over like an ol' woman.

They looked ridiculous and I was afraid they would spill wax
on the gorgeous table-runner my little sister quilted for me.
Yea, she's in her 40's, but she's still little to me.

I found this gem, some kinda' plumber's tape,
 in the junk drawer.
I hope we don't get a leak in our pipes soon,
because I used most of it on the candles.

(No more getting frustrated that hubby puts his stuff
in my kitchen junk drawer.)


Crooked things made straight.

There's something even better for making
crooked things straight-

-the Lord God,
our Creator,
our Master,
our Savior.

He turns sinners into saints,
rascals into redeemed and
children of darkness into children of light.

He seeks the lost,
He strengthens the weak,
He seals the saved.

Isaiah 40:b-5a
..."The crooked places shall be made straight
And the rough places smooth;
The glory of the LORD shall be revealed..."

He not only makes the crooked path straight,
He knows our path,
He goes before us,
He walks beside us,
He leads us,
He lights the path,
He picks us up when we fall.

How has the Lord Jesus straightened your crooked path?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Josephus on Prodigals

Just say the word "prodigal" in a room of Christian parents and you'll see eyes filming over, lips starting to quiver.  The greatest heartache of believing parents is having children who forsake the Lord.

This isn't a problem common only to our generation. As long as there have been children, there have been prodigals.  Adam and Eve know what it's like to have a heart broken by a child who refused to obey the laws of God.

Josephus, a Jewish historian who lived from 37 A.D. to about 100 A.D, wrote about the life of Samuel the Prophet in his book the Antiquities of the Jews. ( 6.3.2)

"But afterwards he (Samuel) found himself oppressed with old age, and not able to do what he used to do, so he committed the government and the care of the multitude to his sons... Joel and...Abiah. 

Now these men afford us an evident example and demonstration how some children are not of the like dispositions with their parents;

but sometimes perhaps good and moderate, though born of wicked parents;

and sometimes showing themselves to be wicked, though born of good parents;

for these men turning aside from their father's good courses, and taking a course that was contrary to them, perverted justice for the filthy lucre of gifts and bribes, and made their determinations not according to truth, but according to bribery, and turned aside to luxury, and a costly way of living; so that as,

 in the first place, they practiced what was contrary to the will of God...

in the second place, what was contrary to the will of the prophet their father, who had taken a great deal of care, and made a very careful provision that the multitude should be righteous.

Josephus understands the rebellion of a child is two-fold, they turn away from the Lord first, then they turn away from their parents.

People look at a wayward child and often point the finger of accusation at the parents.

"They were just so harsh, it's no wonder he turned out that way."

"A young woman only turns to other men if her Dad neglects her."

"I always knew there was something going on in that home."

I understand  parents can be guilty of bad decisions and bad examples, we all still have the sin nature, but it doesn't justify the child's actions. 

There isn't always room for blame. God, the first Father, was not responsible when Adam and Eve sinned, they chose to rebel against His laws.

Josephus also understood free will goes both ways. Kids  from ungodly homes can choose the Lord and choose to honor Him, even though they never heard His lovely Name uttered by their parents apart from cursing.

Saved parents choose to raise their children according to His Word and tell of His wonderful salvation, but that doesn't mean the kids will choose this beautiful path.  They might, as Josephus said, make "their determinations not according to Truth."

Our job is to believe the Truth,
live the Truth,
teach the Truth,
love the Truth,
and pray our children
seek the Truth.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Eat Ramen Noodles and Count Roman Numerals

I know Ramen Noodles are for eating
and Roman Numerals are for counting,
but sometimes my kids get mixed up.

Since all roads lead to Rome, follow me to

Tuesday at

to see how I taught my kids to count Roman Numerals
and eat Ramen Noodles.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Parenting Isn't What I Imagined

As a new bride, when I pictured motherhood, I pictured the same magazinesque scenes you pictured.

A well-groomed adoring mother, that would be me, reaching for anxious toddler fingers as they took their first victorious steps.

A well-rested, model-looking mommy, that would be me,  holding an engraved silver spoon full of wholesome, homemade baby food towards a cherubic, clean face with  wide-open mouth.

I knew I would lovingly and adoringly teach them to walk, talk and eat.

There were things I never thought I would have to teach my children.

(Just found this after I originally published the blog,
maybe writing on the walls isn't so bad?)

I never imagined having to tell them to not write on my walls. Hey, how hard can it be to tell the difference between a PIECE OF PAPER and a WALL?

I never imagined having to instruct them to not wipe boogers on my walls. I know, your kids do it too, right? Hey, how hard can it be to tell the difference between  a WALL and a TISSUE?

I never imagined having to instruct them to not eat tissue. Hey, how hard can it be to tell the difference between a TISSUE and a SNACK?

I never imagined having to instruct them not to shove their snack up their nose. Hey, how hard can it be to tell the difference between a SNACK and a FINGER?

And did I already mention I didn't like having to teach them not to stick their fingers up their noses to retrieve boogers to wipe on my walls?

I'm sure the Lord feels the same way about His children at times.

Should He really have to tell us to love our children? To love our husbands? Hey, how hard can it be to love those that are the most important to us?

To do all things without grumbling or complaining? To be patient towards all?  Hey, how hard can it be to do a little housework, wipe up a few accidents, break up a few fights, make a few meals and still look like a well-groomed, adoring, well-rested, model-looking Mommy?
I thought parenting would be easier.

Just as our children leave a trail of destruction behind  when they don't obey the laws of Mom, we can leave a trail of destruction behind when we don't obey the laws of the Lord.

A harsh word of frustration can be scribbled onto a small child's heart instead of being poured out in prayer into the listening ears of a Prayer-hearing and answering  God.

The little bad attitude can be  smeared on the walls of our testimony, instead of being discarded where it will be removed as far as the east is from the west.

As Mommies  teach their little children the important life lessons, the Heavenly Father is still teaching His children lessons.

Parenting isn't what I imagined.  I used to think it was only about raising my kids.

We all have a little more to learn about scribbling and fussing.

Making your home sing Mondays

Sunday, February 6, 2011

MM Meditation - Peace! Be Still!

Mark 4:37-41
And a great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat,
so that it was already filling.

But He was in the stern, asleep on a pillow.
And they awoke Him and said to Him,
"Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?”

Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea,
“Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.

But He said to them, “Why are you so fearful?
How is it that you have no faith?”

And they feared exceedingly, and said to one another,
“Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!”

It must have been some storm to terrify these fishermen, whose lives had been shaped by a rugged livelihood in these very waters. They had fared through many storms and knew well the signs in the heavens and in the waters. They knew when to sail through and when to head for shore. This time, it was different. Neither sailing nor shore were possible, sinking was inevitable.

 And, while these manly men were facing their terrifying trauma, their leader was sound asleep.

 They had fear, not faith. They only saw physically. They couldn’t fathom  that the Hands that had measured the waters, were equally as capable of calming them. They didn’t know that His sleep wasn’t one of helplessness and indifference to their plight, it was a peaceful sleep of testing their faith; He was in control.

It is easy for us to read this and wonder why these men were terrified. They had the Savior in the boat with them! Sometimes We read the Scriptures and criticize the failings of His followers, but we might not be as quick to identify our own failings.

How often have we cried out with our troubled hearts, minds and bodies, "Do You not care that we are perishing?”

We feel as though there must be some mistake, that our Savior must be sleeping on a pillow of indifference, He must be ignorant of the heavy burdens on us. He must not care that our suffering is more than we think we can bear. It is OUR weakness that causes us to wrongly accuse the Savior of ignorance or indifference.

Because, not only do the Scriptures teach us that we must trust the One who can calm the storms of our lives, we must also trust the One who is causing the storm.

 Using human reasoning, we might feel we don’t deserve suffering. What do we really deserve? If we deserved only the amount of suffering equal to the sins we have committed, including sins of commission and sins of omission, then shouldn’t we all be suffering much, much more?

But, in spiritual reasoning there is not a balance weighing suffering against sins, just a wise and loving Heavenly Father who is carefully and righteously causing and allowing storms in our lives.

He longs to increase our faith, which is more precious than gold. He longs to bring us to His bosom, clinging in confidence, as the waves swell. He longs to see us rest in faith, so that He doesn't have to chide us, "How is it that you have no faith?”

He wants us to have peace and sleep in faith through the storms, resting on a pillow of faith.

Friday, February 4, 2011

How to Torture a Teenager

(Names are not used to protect the guilty.)

I had to run errands with all the kids still living at home. Had to. I had to take the older kids because they needed to go to the bank. I had to take the younger kids because I had no babysitter.

I found myself stuck in a mini-van in rush hour traffic at 4pm with 4 kids that needed to eat and/or sleep and/or be duct-taped to a tree, as their father likes to threaten in moments of mocking exasperation.

The oldest child was in the front seat, using her electric seat function as a form of torture on her younger teenage sister. She would move the seat all the way back, crowding the territory of her longer-legged sibling. When the screaming, protesting and smacking of the seat was sufficient, she would move the seat forward. Then, like a child, she would repeat this maneuver over and over.

The only boy in the van was paying the consequences (or rather, WE were) for eating way too much sugar at prayer meeting the night before. It was the worst case of SBD's I have ever encountered, despite growing up with three milk-guzzling lactose-intolerant brothers.

For those who weren't privileged to grow up with brothers, SBD stands for SILENT BUT DEADLY, the worst flatulation known to womankind. I was hanging my head out the open window in the pouring PNW rain, trying not to hurl, but, literally gasping for fresh air and trying to rid my nose of the putrid smell that probably burned out what precious few nose hairs had survived my traumatic childhood. Like a morning sickness flashback, I was dry heaving over the side of the mini-van, while wondering if the 5-year old daughter stuck in the backseat with him was going to have permanent brain damage.

To the annoying beep-beep of his Gameboy, the boy was kicking the seat ahead of him in perfect syncopation, annoying his sister with every sensory faculty available to him.

My dear younger teenage daughter was being tormented from the front and from behind, so she did what any good teenager would do - started yelling. She was threatening to throw the Gameboy out the window and threatening the older teenage sister ahead of her. The cacophony of yelling, giggling, gasping for fresh air and fart cliques (he who smelt it dealt it! he who makes the rhyme committed the crime) was a symphony of insanity.

I was in the hot seat, literally, because the oldest teenage daughter kept turning on the seat-warmer on high and cranking up the heat so she could make me think I was having a hot flash, which they all think is hysterical.

So, I did what any good mother would do. I carefully modulated my discipline. I ruled out spanking, ruled out cutting off their allowances (they don't get one anyway), I ruled out extra chores.

I simply reached over, shut off the seat warmer, AGAIN, turned on the radio and CRANKED the classical music. The louder they protested, the louder I turned it up. Because I was still hot-flashing, the window was rolled all the way down so we were the center attraction in rush-hour gridlock.

We drove this way the rest of the way home, four kids yelling and ducking in embarrassment, and the mom serenely driving her minivan, thumping the steering wheel in time to the most beautiful sound in the world.


(originally published 3-8-09)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

6 for Spam, 1 for Jesus

Like most Americans, my junk-email box is daily barraged with unsolicited mail. 

I have been declared the , long-lost surviving relative to several extremely rich men, none apparently could afford a postage stamp. I'm supposed to send them a lot of money  to inherit their money?

Other emails from dying Christians begged me to accept their money to distribute after their death.  Again, paying money to get money.

It's easy to discern fraudulent emails.  Most  people violate 6 simple rules we learned in elementary school.  Most second graders would be able to identify these letters as SPAM.

Maybe they should have read some of my previous grammar blogs before trying to SPAM me.  The italicized words are from the delightful emails I have been fortunate enough to receive.

*Mrs Lois Aalborg
Hewlett Packard Promotion Department
Promo Coordinator,

Attn: Sir.

* 750.000.00 (Seven Hundred And Fifty Thousand Pounds Sterling)
* Two Million Dollars ($2,000.000.00)
* Your Email Has Won $1,000.000.00 United State Dollars
* total sum of USD1.200.000.00
* $750.000.00 United States Dollars

(I think someone should have gone to summer school for math, whatdya' think?)

*A letter from an American soldier serving in Iraq who needed help getting barrels of money out of the country was signed
Sgt .Williams Gerald
United States Marine Corps.

*If you are still alive you can get back to us as fast as you can or you can call me on my phone take note that every thing has been paid for it is just for the Dumorage fee...
Mr Rogers Moore


(OK, brilliant spammers, Williams and Rogers are LAST names, not FIRST names.  William and Roger are  used for first names.  Periods always follow abbreviations, such as Mr., but not after a title or a country.  DUH!)

* try to help the less previledge ones in your country (They were trying to help me figure out how to use the bajillions they were going to send me.)

* via western union by this governemnt.

*I buy your guts and courage to be more conscious when it come's to case like this, it is normal you get protective over such issue as you never knows how real it is.
(I think this was my favorite sentence to read over and over and laugh. Someone bought my guts?)

* Come down to United Kingdom to pick up your Winning Parcel.

* I want to compensate you and show microsoft gratitude to youwith the sum of $900,000 dollars...

* consignment was abandoned because the Content was...
*The Almighty lord do not create me out to this world to cheat or deceive people of interest out of their money so i will reject been such ever in my life.I am a knight in my church I worship as a good Christian, if i had ever thought of scamming people i think God would not have elevated me to this standard which i am now.

When all else fails, they couldn't dangle a big enough financial carrot, they couldn't make me weep over someone's cancer, they try to bring the Lord into it.  Hmmm... not biting, how about you?

You see, when we are discerning spiritual truth, it gets even easier.  We don't even need six rules, we just need one.

I John 4:1-3
1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, 3 and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God."

The one rule is the Lord Jesus Christ.

Some will recognize that He was a man who walked the earth, but won't acknowledge He was from God.  He created the world with God, then was sent by God to die for the world.

Some do not believe He was God incarnate, sinless, holy and spotless.  They might believe He was a good man, even a prophet, but will not confess He is Jesus Christ.

Some do not believe He is the only way to God. They might allow for Him to be a way to God, but not the way.

Jesus   - "God is my salvation"
Christ  - "Messiah"

And the beautiful part about this discernment?  Even a child can understand.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Not'cher MinnesOtan Fud

When we moved from the upper midwest to the PNW seven years ago,
I thought I had moved to another country. 
The people were different, the accents were different,
the traffic was different, the clothing was different.

The food was different - really, really different.

At times the differences were so overwhelming, it would drive me to tears. 
I kept telling myself that if the early pioneer women could make it,
I could make it.

The first time we had a team from work over, we'd lived here only a year. 

We still cooked MinnesOtan. 

I prepared the best I knew,
Velveeta Cheese chili dip, barbecued Little Smokies and spicy meatballs.
I also had a veggie and fruit tray, rolled-out sugar cookies,
fudge and a few other favorites. 

I was pretty proud of myself, until I noticed the guests hardly ate anything.

Recently, we had my husband's new team over to kick off the new year.  
My amazing kids helped me update our company menu
to see if people would actually eat our food.   
Grace, my neat freak, helped with cleaning. 
Bethany did the cooking and Jon did the dishes.  
Beka traipsed around helping everyone with her cheerful attitude.

We didn't burn anything.
We didn't break anything.
We didn't drop anything.
We didn't melt anything.
We didn't get our hair caught in anything.

We had a wonderful day working together.

Stuffed mini Portabella mushrooms

Sockeye Salmon Dip, Kalamata olives, Manzanilla olives

Dill Havarti, Brie, Gouda, Smoked Gouda and French Abbaye Cheeses
It looked amazing with the fresh, lush clusters of grapes, 
but I forgot to take a picture.
We served the tradtional fruit and vegetable trays.

We didn't buy the standard Wheat Thins and Triscuits,we bought those fancy crackers.
 I know, right? 
Compared to the generic crackers I bought in early marriage,
 Wheat Thins and Triscuits are upscale.
(Wanna' know a secret?
We still buy them when we don't have company.)

For desert we had chocolate truffles, dark chocolate covered acai berries,
and Grace's white-chocolate dipped strawberries.

The best part of the evening?

The guests ate the food.

We enjoyed animated conversation and people would often pop up
to refill their plates.

I suddenly realized why my Gramma loved to see people eat -
there's such a satisfying feeling of knowing company is enjoying your food.
Or, in my case, my daughter's food.

The food  we served was definitely
not'cher Minnesotan fud.

What's your favorite food items to serve guests?

Have you had any failures like mine?

I'd love to hear your stories.