All posts by admin

About admin

I was born and raised in the Columbus,Ohio area. Met my husband and married while in college (we have been married 36 years). I graduated from Ohio State University with a Bachelor's in English Literature. Over the years I have been very active in the church and have lead Bible studies, have been an AWANA leader and am currently a Stephen Minister. I love to write. I write non-fiction and fiction.

What It Means to Sacrifice

When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor in 1941, my dad was seventeen years old. In early 1942, he decided to enlist. He and a group of his friends went to join the Marines. All my dad’s friends made it in the Marines, except my dad. They reached their quota and sent my dad to another branch to enlist in. He decided to serve in the Navy.

My dad lived on a destroyer from 1942-1945. His only time away from the ship was on shore leaves. His ship was small, and he slept cramped on a cot-like bed, ate food that was not appealing, had to follow orders and had little free time. He survived a typhoon, having bombs dropped around him, and dodging torpedoes. He also had to leave the enemy who was either shot down or their ships had sunk in the ocean because there was no room or supplies for them on his ship. He had men die beside him and has had to shoot at another human being. It was hard for my dad. He grew up during the Depression, a time when people helped one another, not destroyed each other.

He gave over three years of his life to serve his country. Today he is 93 and has never regretted it, nor did he ever complain about it. It was something he did because it was the right thing to do. It’s not something he talks about much either, but he has revealed glimpses of what it was like to his family just over the past few years.

How many parents during WWII sacrificed their sons to keep the freedoms we enjoy today? Let’s expand that to all wars and conflicts and the sacrifices made by all military personnel and their families. When I think of my dad’s WWII service and that of others, I’m reminded of Abraham and his near sacrifice of his son, Isaac.

God asked Abraham to take his son and sacrifice him. Isaac was Abraham’s only heir and the promised son provided by God. Abraham did not question or bargain with God. He immediately did as he was told. Abraham was willing to sacrifice the life of his only son.
According to the dictionary, sacrifice means to surrender or give up, or permit injury or disadvantage to, for the sake of something else. That means that it requires tremendous devotion and faith to do something so selfless.

In Abraham’s case. He had strong faith in God built on a relationship of trust. He wanted to serve the God who provided for him and loved him. In my dad’s case, he had a belief in this country and its freedoms. Both men moved forward in faith knowing the risk of forfeiting a future here on Earth.

I think of how strong faith must be to make such a sacrifice. It is a force that swells and overtakes the mind and spirit. It makes a person driven by that faith or belief system to not be able to do anything but act on it. I measure my faith against Abraham’s and come up short. I realize faith is not something that happens overnight. It is a process that comes from time spent getting to know God and learning to trust Him.

He (Jesus) replied, “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you. Luke 17:6

Worry

What do you worry about? I know I worry about whether my husband and I have enough money in our retirement fund, how high gasoline and food prices will go, and I worry about my children. I also fret about what the world will be like when my grandchildren are adults. I could add to the list, but I think you get the drift.

Do you notice anything interesting in what you worry about? I do. I don’t worry about the things I can take care of and do, but if something is beyond my control, then I allow worry to gain a foothold. If you give worry a foothold, in a matter of time, it will be completely through the door. Worry is a nag. It is always whispering, “What if…what if…?” It never allows a person to have a completely positive thought or mindset.

An anonymous author said, “Worry is like a rocking chair: It gives you something to do, and it doesn’t get you anywhere.” What a great picture! When we worry, our mind goes back and forth between thoughts and doesn’t accomplish a thing, and we stay in the same place…never moving forward.

Usually there is nothing that can be done to change whatever we are worried about. Our thoughts are often about things that haven’t even happened yet or may never happen. Worry cannot change a thing in our lives and does nothing but squelch our joy and happiness. If we do it long and hard enough, worry can make us ill or feel ill.

Whatever is going to happen will happen, regardless of our thought life. It is always good to be prepared and have a plan, but not to dwell on the “what ifs.” When we are old and look back on our lives, we will see the things we did do and take note of what we enjoyed. How many of us will say, “I did not worry enough?” We will be ever so remorseful if we let worry stop us from living life to its fullest with joy.

Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:34

God Is With You

I had a very good friend, Lori, who was a godly and caring woman. She became a Christ follower when she was in her thirties. I’ll never forget her zeal as she took hold of Jesus and never let go. Everyone who knew her, knew Jesus was a priority in her life.
She truly had a sweet spirit and was soft-spoken, kind and always thought of others. Her practice of forgiveness and selflessness was a testimony. She dealt with many difficult circumstances and people and made it her mission to do the right thing or always be the better person.

Even as she fought her two-year battle with melanoma, her faith remained strong. She often said that she believed the Lord was going to heal her and did not waiver in that belief, even when the news was bad. The Lord did indeed finally heal her by taking her home to be with Him on Thanksgiving Day in 2014. She was remembered at her funeral as a strong Christian woman who touched others and made a difference in people’s lives.
Just as people noticed Lori’s love for the Lord, people also noticed that Abraham was a godly man. As a matter of fact, Abimelech (the king) said to Abraham, “God is obviously with you in everything you do…” Abimelech and Abraham had previous dealings with one another and had known one another a long time.

Abraham openly and without any qualms worshipped the One and Only God. Because Abraham walked closely with God, God looked out for Abraham. Abimelech was aware of Abraham’s close relationship to God and wanted to have a covenant with him. Abimelech’s desire was to live in peace with Abraham and his people and to deal honestly with one another.

What a compliment it would be for someone to say to you, “God is obviously with you in everything you do.” It means that you are living your faith for all to see, and God means more to you than what people think of you. How can we live a life that shows God is in everything we do?

As you look at your life, you can ask yourself some questions. What is my relationship with the Lord like? Do I pray every day and consult Him about every decision? Am I reading the Bible daily so that I can know Him better? Do I give God the glory for the victories in my life and hold onto faith that He will lead me through the valleys? Do I worship the Lord more than anything else in my life? Am I reflecting the character of Christ in my daily living and dealings with others?

Living a godly life is not easy, and it is a daily challenge. There is always a spiritual battle going on in our minds over our souls. Satan will do whatever he can to put a wedge between us and the Lord. The key is to be aware of it and persevere and never take our eyes from the Lord. When we diligently seek Him and His will, we will find Him.

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10

He Will Rescue Us

When we lived in Charlotte, North Carolina, I went on a job interview in a huge mazelike office complex with multiple parking garages. It took me forever to find a vacant parking spot, but I finally did. I had to hurry to get to my interview on time.
Afterwards, I went back to the parking garage. I thought I had retraced my steps, but I could not find my car. After about half an hour, I was near to tears and wondered if my car had been stolen. I wore a pair of stiletto heels, and my feet were screaming for help. They hurt so bad I was limping.
I prayed to God to help me. Not too long after my prayer, a security guard came by on a golf cart. He could tell I was lost and stopped. I told him my dilemma. He said not to be upset that it happened all the time. Then he offered to drive me around on his golf cart until we found it. I happily accepted his help.
We finally found my car. There was a wire fence between the garage I was in and my car. The security guard said that he could not drive me over there because it was not part of their building. I’d have to walk. He told me how to get to the other side. Fifteen minutes later, I was in my car and on the way home.
I do not think I have ever felt so helpless or lost. I remembered thinking I was never going to get out of that parking garage alive. It was the one time I could identify with Hagar.
After Sarah demanded that Abraham send Hagar and Ishmael away, they wandered in the wilderness. She was out of water, tired and lost. Her son was literally dying of thirst. After she put her son in the shade, she walked away and left him to die. Her son was crying. Then she got about a hundred feet from Ishmael, sat down and cried, too. She did not want her son to die and didn’t know what to do.
God heard the boy’s cry and sent an angel to Hagar. He told her that she should go to her son and comfort him. God was not going to let him die, but would make a great nation from him. He also provided water for them. This was the second time that God heard Hagar’s distress and rescued her.
There are times in our lives when we feel like we are wandering aimlessly and/or feel cutoff by humanity due to a circumstance or emotions going on inside ourselves. We want rescued. Just as Hagar cried out for help, we can do the same. We can rest assured that God will hear our cries of distress. He heard my cry of distress and made the security guard with a golf cart available. What a blessing that was.
Sometimes His rescues are not always as miraculous as mine or Hagar’s, but He will let us know in some way that He hears us. Help will come in His time and His way and for our good. All it takes is walking by faith with God through the difficult circumstance.

Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Psalms 23:4

Promises

When my husband proposed to me, he could not afford an engagement ring. He felt bad that he could not give me one. However, he promised me that on our tenth wedding anniversary, he would get me my diamond.

Ten years and three kids later, my husband took our two-and-a-half-year-old son and went out to grab a few things he needed. It was a pre-cell phone era. He was late getting home, and I was a little concerned. When he finally arrived home, I went out to the garage to make sure everything was okay. He said he’d been waylaid. He walked over to me and dropped a box in my pocket and then got our son out of his car seat.

I reached into my pocket and pulled out a jeweler’s box. I opened it, and there sparkled a 1/3 karat diamond engagement ring. My mouth dropped open, and I was too stunned to say anything. As he set our son on the ground, he said, “It’s our ten-year anniversary, and I needed to get you your diamond. I wanted to keep my promise to you.”

Just as my husband kept his promise to me, God kept His promise of a son to Abraham. When Abraham was one hundred years old, Sarah gave birth to a son, Isaac. Not only did God honor His promise, He did it in such an unbelievable way. After all, how many humans over eighty years old have babies? Only God could perform such a miracle. I believe He waited until Abraham and Sarah were advanced in age, so there would be no doubt that Isaac’s birth was a “God thing”.

The Bible is full of God’s promises. Even though, those promises are thousands of years old, they are still valid today. Abraham went to God in prayer many times reminding God of His promise for land, prosperity and a son. Sometimes, when we pray His promises, it may seem like it takes forever for God to answer, but He will. God is the same as He was back then. He never changes, and His words are true.

Sometimes, our prayer life gets stagnant. To make it more meaningful and to be more proactive look up some of the promises God makes us in the Bible. Make sure to research both the Old and New Testament. Begin to pray His promises in your life with faith. God is pleased when we pray His Word. By studying His promises, we learn more about who He is, how He feels about us, what we can expect from Him and what is pleasing to Him.

Where can you find some of His Promises? They are peppered throughout the Bible. Some of the more prominent ones are recorded in Deuteronomy, 2 Kings, Jeremiah, Nehemiah, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, 1 Corinthians, Hebrews and Revelation. Highlight them as you find them, no matter where they are in the Bible, so you can easily find them. His promises bring us encouragement and show His love for us. Like He kept His promises to Abraham, God will keep His promises to us, too.

The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Deuteronomy 31:8