Stay or Go

There have been times in my life when God has clearly said stay and others that He has clearly said go. In both instances, I have followed God’s voice.

A series of events have happened at my workplace. I resigned a week ago today. It had nothing to do with money. It was more about changes that were happening against the standards of the company I work for. Although it was my plan to leave, God put things into motion that have caused a paradigm change in me and the situation around me. He clearly said stay. His plan was a good one.

As for go… Several months ago we left the church we had been part of for more than 20 years. It was a very hard decision and caused many tears. We knew people would not understand. We choose to not broadcast the reason because it would simply make another person look bad. Again, God’s plan was clearly a good one.  

I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD. Plans to prosper and not harm. Plans to give hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11 

Each Friday I receive a prompt and write out my thoughts for 5 minutes.  Today’s post is for that reason.  Come on over and join me at 5-Minute Friday.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

Inclusive Or Exclusive

 

God’s Word is very clear about this subject.  Just as God includes everyone we are to do the same.  It does not matter whether we are male/female, rich/poor, educated, beautiful, young/old …

Look at James 2.  It’s really clear on the issue.  We are to welcome and love everyone who enters our ‘meeting’.  We are to be inclusive, not exclusive.

God loves us all the same.  So, if we’re truly trying to become more like Him, then, we are going to stop the favoritism game.  There’s a great song out right now by Mandisa, We All Bleed The Same, that says it all.  “…if we’re going to shout, let love be the cry.”

And so, in response to all he has done for us, let us outdo each other in being helpful and kind to each other and in doing good. (Hebrews 10:24) 

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

Sharing this post with many other awesome bloggers at  5-Minute Friday.

True Beauty

Where is true beauty found?  In our looks, our jewelry, our homes/cars, our…   I think not!  Then is beauty in the ‘eye of the beholder’?  To some extent, but even that is based on personal bias.  Confucious said, “Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.”  In nature, in music, in work, in …  It truly is all around us.  We just have to train ourselves to look.

In the Song of Songs, Solomon tells his bride that she is beautiful because she has no flaws (Song of Songs 4:7).  Our culture is all about that.  If we are thin, rich, youthful, educated and successful we are considered perfect. But is that really what being beautiful is all about?

So what is beauty?   Have you ever met someone that is not physically beautiful but there’s just something about them that draws you in.  I really like the way the New Living Translation says 1 Peter 3:4, “You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God.”  There it is.  The confident, inner glow, that says I care about you, I know your struggle, I’ve been where you are …  The ability to be appreciative, forgiving and loving marks the beautiful person.

Beauty is not about perfect hair, (I’ve not had a perfect hair day in so long I’ve given up on it.) perfect body shape, perfect attire, perfect words, perfect home, perfect children…  It’s not about perfect anything!  It’s about the willingness to take the focus off yourself and place it on Jesus and those around us.  Only then, are we truly beautiful!

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

I’m delighted to be writing with many others in response to the 5-Minute Friday word prompt.  You can join us, too!  Check it out at http://fiveminutefriday.com

My Story

Are you curious about me?  I certainly am about you?  Every one of us has a story that is peculiar (Yes, that’s the right usage of the word.) to us.  Here is a part of mine.  There is so much more…

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My greatest desire is to teach others how much God loves them and how to use His Word to live the life He has purposed for them.  In my home church, I co-direct Worship and Music, play all keyboards, and sing with the Worship Band.  God has seen fit to give me the gift of teaching, which I use for leading 3 Bible Study groups.  He specifically called me to writing/blogging about 5 years ago.

I have been married to the perfect partner, chosen for me by God, for more than 45 years. It was God’s plan that we would not have children but would be able to love in a unique way our nieces, nephews, and the hundreds of children who touched our lives through the years I spent in Public Education as a Music Specialist and Elementary Principal.  I hold a B.S. Degree in Music Education and Performance from Defiance College and an M.Ed. Degree in Administration and Supervision from Bowling Green State University.

Our family includes two cats named Smokey and Salem, three awesome sisters and one incredible brother, 7 sisters-in-law, 7 brothers-in-law, 36 nieces and nephews and their spouses, and many great nieces and nephews.

Music has been part of my life from my earliest years.  One of the greatest honors of my life was to be invited to sing in the Rose Garden of the Whitehouse with the Ohio Youth Choir at the invitation of then-President Richard Nixon.
As a 25+ year Cancer Survivor, I have been able to use that challenging time of my life to support others.  It was not easy but God knew there would be many who would need a listening ear, an understanding heart, and someone who understands the value of presence without words.

From the time I was old enough to hold needles, scissors, yarn, thread, fabric, you name it, I was ‘hooked’ on crafts, particularly those that are counted.   From painting count by number pictures to my grandmother teaching me to crochet, to my mother teaching me to embroider, to learning to do counted cross stitch, rug hooking, needlepoint and crewel my life has been filled with many happy hours of artful crafting.  I also enjoy sewing and often make my own clothing and things for my home.

I enjoy baking and decorating.  This hobby started when Ray and I owned a coffee shop/bakery called Maggi Raes.  (Maggie for the carved magnolias that were part of the shop’s decorations.)  I am certified in all the Wilton decorating levels and have done many wedding, birthday, and event cakes and cookies.

We love to travel, especially on cruise ships, and have been all over the Caribbean and are planning to go to Alaska for our next cruise.  We also enjoy taking a few days here and there in the Smokey Mountains, believing there is nothing like sitting on a rocker, on a back porch, on top of a mountain and enjoying the beauty of God’s creation.

God has given me a great life and I can’t thank Him enough for His love and provision.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

(BTW: The reason this only took 5 minutes is that I copied and pasted it from a much larger article. )

Common

 

common

Such an interesting word.  So many applications.

Common ground — when we are in agreement on an issue

Common sense–the ability to use what you know is right

Common law–personal actions over time leading to common ‘ownership’

Common cold–a health condition

Common chord–musical term

Common property–those items that are shared by 2 or more parties

Common denominator–mathematical term

Common noun–that which is not a proper noun

Common core–academic standards defining what a student should know

In common–a sense of mutual agreement

I am joining Kate Motaung and an incredibly talented group of writers for Five Minute Friday. One word prompt. Five minutes. No editing. Just writing!

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie