Thanksgiving 2014

I know I am very behind in my posts. I do apologize. The last two months especially have been very long, draining days. Not that they weren’t exciting and fulfilling, but every minute seemed to be scheduled with clients and candidates and that’s where my focus had to be. Often I was prepping early or late and so there just wasn’t the down time from before. BELIEVE ME, I am not complaining! This has been more of a gift from God in so many ways I cannot begin to tell you. I would love to give you all the little details about how our Lord is so involved in every aspect of our lives, but of course, confidentiality must win! The great little secret though is starting off your day with the Lord! Don’t tell me for one minute He hasn’t known exactly what I was going to be reading for my day and what I would need, because of course, He always does. Praying before I start my calls, makes the difference, I am convinced. Do I get everyone I want? No, but I get everyone the Lord wants me to work with. I know that’s why I am “doing better” this year, in recruiter numbers, but hopefully more importantly in lives changed for the better, people I’ve spoken to sent on their way-better. Whatever it is that I am supposed to do or say for someone who comes into my sphere that day, that is what I am counting on my God, to open my mouth or put in my mind. He of course, never lets me down!

My husband and I were able to travel and see our children and grandchildren  this past week for the holiday. Another thing I am grateful for-a boss who knew when I needed a break! I was able to see my brother and 3 sisters and families too! A whole lot of cooking was done-some by me! Amazingly I haven’t forgotten how. I was always able to help in my daughter’s beautiful new kitchen. What a pleasure it was to work there! I learned some new tricks and even made a new dish (for me) bouillabaisse. Nice that it turned out and my husband wants it again now that we are home!

What else might I be thankful for? For now anyway, the freedom to worship my Lord God as I choose. The right to bear arms if I choose. The right to drive a car with a valid drivers license-many women in many parts of the world can’t do this. The right to choose what I want to wear, shorts, jeans, a swimsuit, but whatever I choose. Another choice many women don’t have. I work at a job I love, with men and women. Again, not a choice that many women in the world get to make. People say its for their protection. Yeah, I wonder exactly who’s protection? The one who doesn’t want her to know there is a great big world out there? I might havehave been raised “a long time ago” but one thing my parents never did to me or any of my sisters was tell us what we couldn’t be when we grew up. We are all four very different, accomplished women. And my brothers ain’t bad either!

MOST OF ALL, I am thankful what my Lord Jesus Christ did by coming down from heaven, stepping into time as a baby, growing up to be the God/Man who died on that cross at Calvary for me.

G’night

Cindy

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So Much Is Going On!!

As I had what I hope will be the very last reconstructive surgery a week ago, I recouped over Labor Day weekend reading books, posts on FB and the internet and listening to the news.

I watched Shephard Smith about break down a few weeks  after the airliner was shot down over Ukraine, the border jumpers in Texas in particular, and the volcanoes erupting. Since then we have had Ebola kill thousands, ISIS become a major threat to the world, Putin continue to flex his muscles, volcanoes continue to erupt, illegals still are jumping our borders. The United States has seen two of its citizens beheaded by ISIS, in retaliation, they say, for our bombings, pitiful as they are. Yet America by and large continues business as usual. Oh we rail against our “Muslim President who won’t hit his Muslim brotherhood unless he just has to.” We rail against our Congress-yes that means you Congress Representatives and Senators for only caring about getting re-elected, not anything about doing the business of government. but other than that, what do we do America?

I watched a news program this morning. They had started off talking about the fact that this is a Christian nation, founded on the principles of God. Which is in fact truth, it was. Then they went on to talk about how our nation is a “melting pot” and we have every religion here. That is true. But as far as I know, in our constitution nor our Bill of Rights, does it demand that we bow down to somebody else’s idea of “their” religion or no religion. I believe that our courts, our judges, our attorneys who continue to pursue this line only pursue with the threat of a nasty eternity hanging over their heads. God says He will not be mocked and all will find out soon enough exactly who is King of Kings.

In Matthew 24 the disciples have come to Jesus privately and asked Him about when the things that He has prophesied will happen. First, he tells them that all of the stones that make up the temple building will be thrown. It happens 70 yrs AD and as for the “end of the age? pay attention: Starting with v5 For many will come in my name, claiming, “I am the Christ” and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it hat you are not alarmed. such things must happen, but in end is still to come. Nation will rise up against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All of these are the beginning of the birth pains. Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death and you will be hated by all nations because of me. at that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.  Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, he who stands firm to the end will be saved.

If you want to know about the end of the world, all you have to do is continue to read the chapter. Jesus was very specific about the coming events.  Even in verse 32, Israel becoming a nation (the fig tree which it is called here), He prophesied and truly, 1948 Israel was reborn as a nation. Jesus talks about His coming, that it will be as it was in the days of Noah. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage up to the day Noah entered the Ark and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. But do you remember why there had to be a flood at all? It was because God had looked down upon the earth and had seen “how great man’s wickedness had become.” That is how it will be when Jesus comes. Two will be in the field, one will be taken (the believer) and one will be left. Jesus told us to be ready. Are you ready?

Thirty five or forty years ago, I read a book named  Tortured For Christ by Richard Wurmbrand. It made a profound impression upon me. Just in the last year, I have come upon the organization he and his wife (Sabina who also underwent severe persecution, torture and imprisonment for Jesus’ sake). It is called The Voice of The Martyrs. I have read several of their books and stories through their newsletters. Please check them out at http://www.persecution.com  Another organization that I think very highly of is Gospel for Asia. I get their books and newsletters too. These organizations, along with Samaritan’s Purse are acting as the hands and feet of Jesus all over the world. VOM and Gospel for Asia are actively involved in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. I know enough about Billy Graham’s son, to believe that while the organization Samaritan’s Purse, takes take of the physical body of a person, it is always also ministering to the spiritual. Jesus said for what gain is it to have your life for a short time here, but lose for eternity?

So I would ask you again? Are you ready?  Or are you one of those people I speak with day in and day out that are empty and missing something vital in their lives but they just don’t know what exactly it is? God says “If you seek you will find me.”  I am living proof.

 

 

 

 

AND SO IT GOES…

I think everyone knows I had really hoped for great health and no more surprises. But as Ken Copeland on a re-broadcast message today said. “You are never going to have a life free from troubles. It will manifest in many different ways, but you will always have troubles, but remember that Jesus said He had overcome the world.” I woke up Saturday morning with severe double vision, a crooked smile and an awful headache. So instead of going to a church get-together, we went to the ER. My first time in this part of the state. The doctor said I had had a “mini stroke” or TIA.  They admitted me pretty quickly to the “stroke center floor”. I spent the rest of Saturday and most of Sunday undergoing tests. They started my physical therapy this morning as I did have a problem on my left side with my leg and arm. But if any of you remember last year and the stroke on March 15th, you know this was mild indeed!! And how grateful I am to be talking and walking!  

My stay wasn’t as pleasant for a lot of reasons this time, but there were some good things that came out of it as there always are, because God says that “all things work together for those that love Him”. I was completely loved on my the members of my church family. My Sunday School leaders, my deacon, my pastor, my girlfriend and her granddaughter, they all came. Different times and days; it was really precious for me. My sweet husband read the Psalms to me because I couldn’t read anything very well for those first two days. I guess the most important time was my time with the Lord. If you know me at all, you know I was talking to Him and asking  lots of questions! But we had good conversations and while I don’t have many answers, I do have peace that my Father always loves me, knows right where I am, and is in perfect control of the situation.

My pastor reminded me of the 20th Psalm when he came to visit. As he read it to me, I knew that I had prayed specifically about some things that were happening in my life in January 2012.  Now reading it again, I see that the Lord has answered me in ways I couldn’t have even imagined!! (yes, I was blogging then, look in my index to read the crazy things that were going on then!)  But I do want to write out the Psalm here. Perhaps it will mean something to someone else. We are living in crazy, dangerous, but exciting times. NOW is the time to call upon the Lord if you have not! The time is short. Remember, Jesus said that we should be looking for Him to come and get us when we once again have a world like the days of Noah. And we certainly do now. It is so simple to call upon the Lord God to be saved. He says if you search for me, you will find me. He says open the door of your heart and ask me to come in and I will stay with you forever and I will be your Lord and Savior.

Psalm 20  May the Lord shower you when you are in distress; may the name of the God of Jacob protect you. May he send you help from the sanctuary and grant you support from Zion. May he remember all your sacrifices and accept your burnt offerings. May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed. We will shout for joy when you are victorious and will lift up our banners in the name of our God. May the Lord grant all your requests. Now I know that the Lord saves his anointed; he answers him from his holy heaven with the saving power of his right hand. Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. They are brought to their knees and fall, but we rise up and stand firm. O Lord, save the king! Answer us when we call!

What a beautiful picture of a personal God who is interested in everything about us and loves us. This is one of the biggest differences between our Father God and the god of the Muslims. Their “Allah” is a god of vengeance and wrath. He is not personal at all, as in God is my Father. My Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, His Son, but equally God came and died for me AND for this world, most of which hated Him then and hate Him now. He is the God of Peace-everlasting, overwhelming, and unexplainable, peace. Many Muslim people are coming to know my Jesus, because they do seek the one true God.

If anyone reads this who does not know my Jesus, leave me a comment and an email or a phone number, let’s talk!

Goodnight and God bless,

Cindy

 

CHANGES…

I know that it has been some time since I have posted anything. For my faithful followers and inquirers, I do apologize. I have been going through some of the most difficult times of my life, though, and as I have sought the Lord, today, HE has answered me, most graciously. 

Back in February, I had to go to the ER again, because they thought I had another clot in my lungs. It turned out to be pleurisy which is a really painful lung condition. it hurts when you talk, when you laugh and when you cough–all of which I do a lot! Unfortunately the CT scan showed a couple of spots on my lung. I wasn’t really concerned until my GYN doc who had found a lump in my breast just the month before (yes, I’ve already had breast cancer once) was really upset about the possibility of the connection of the two issues and asked me to see a pulmonologist for a referral to an oncologist for a complete check. Notice please, this wasn’t my idea, but my doctor’s. I saw a pulmonologist right away, unfortunately not my own. What a mistake, that!! He didn’t seem to even know what cough variant asthma was! Nor did he know how to prescribe my cough syrup! My pharmacist thought that was a riot! At any rate, he looked right through me. Ever had anyone do that to you? I had no idea what his issue with me was-I had never met him. My pulmonologist and  I had a good relationship. She had cough variant asthma as well, so she certainly understood my issues. I had a terrible cough when I was there and certainly could have used a shot of decadron which is what my pulmonologist in Tampa would have given me. He was only concerned with the fact that he couldn’t hear me wheeze. Cough variant asthma people don’t wheeze–we cough!! Obviously he was no help at all as it took me 2 days to get the cough medicine!

That night I had a really, really bad asthma attack. It was like back in 2011 when I had all those really bad attacks. I think I was so worn down from all I have been through this year physically and mentally, I just didn’t have much strength to fight the spiritual battle that I have been able to do since that May 2011.   On top of that, I started getting opinions from everybody about what I should do, or not do, think or not think. Truly if I had not had the Lord Himself to go to for truth, I might have listened to wrong advice, wrong opinions. I did have a great ER doc. He referred me to an oncologist/hematologist. She turned out to be one of the most caring doctors I have ever met! Unfortunately I am not out of the woods yet as to the spots on my lungs–I will have to have follow up scans every few months.  But at least she has me set on the right course for care!

My journey took me to Breast Specialists of Atlanta. I understand they are the very best. First my insurance company insisted on a mammogram, which is very difficult when one has had reconstructive surgery and implants after a double mastectomy! Imagine my surprise when I found out that I had silicone implants! I thought for the last 11 years that I had saline implants because the first implants had leaked. Well, unfortunately, so have these 11 year old implants! There’s a big blob of silicone right on the outside of my left side where one of the “problems” was! The second problem has turned out to be a benign cyst that I just got the news back on today!! PRAISE THE  LORD! I had so asked that I not have cancer back. I really didn’t know how in the world I was going to handle working with chemo and radiation! Thankfully, the Lord heard my prayers, those of my husband, my sister and my daughters, my brother and sister in law! How precious have they been to pray for me! No diatribes or opinions-just care. When someone is hurting, that is all they need to hear, love and support!!

So physically, bottom line for me at the moment is to get the implants replaced with saline and get that silicone, once and for all, out of my body! That’s the first thing I have to do when I get to our new home in Niceville, Florida! Yes, that is the reason for the title of my post today. I think a lot of you have known we haven’t been thrilled with our circumstances or the quality of the life here. My husband has always wanted to retire to the Panhandle! I would always say no, too many hurricanes hit there, no medical care, etc, etc. But he has spent the last four months doing research on the area and we’ve gone down there several times for weekends. I was wrong. There is good medical care, even a new hospital and where we will live is not in an evacuation area– it’s about 15 minutes from the beach across the bay bridge. And the people are so nice! It’s small town America! Call me corny, but I am ready for it! I don’t need the big city! We are so excited about this! We think we have already found a church too, but we will visit awhile till the Lord says for sure. And as for my Bible study? I can keep up with my BSF International or go back to Precept upon Precept by Kay Arthur. I did that for several years before I started in BSF.  Our church has some great choices for women’s ministry as well as men.

I could go on and on about how much better we think our lives will be in our new city. Our new home, which will not be much more money than what we are paying now for a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom apt, is a 3 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath townhome with a garage and backyard patio! We will feel like we are in a home again. Last Saturday night, the people above us had a fight from 12:30-2:30 AM. It was very loud, lots of screaming going on. It was really scary. The weekend before, they were vacuuming at 12:30 am. Really and truly, I can’t wait to leave next week!

Oh and if anyone wonders what about my wonderful job? My boss said when I asked him if he minded me moving to the Panhandle, “no, you’re just changing a zip code and an area code. whatever makes you happy.” He’s great, isn’t he?

I’ll write again when we get settled.

Goodnight and God bless!

 

HOW IMPORTANT OUR THOUGHTS!

As a continuation of my post on Monday, we went to the doctor on Tuesday. Turns out I have pneumonia and costochondritis in addition to the pleurisy! Gee, no wonder I hurt so much and I am so very tired! My wonderful doctor (primary) loaded me up on antibiotics, 800 mg Ibuprofen and codeine cough syrup. She told me to hold a pillow when I cough. That helps with the pain of coughing. By the way the costochondritis is the inflammation of the cartilage between the ribs and of course, it comes from coughing!

Last night was of course a little discouraging, so I went back to my Sunday devotional to remind myself that God was telling me that these afflictions are among His most favored gifts. It does take an act of will to choose to praise Him anyway. In fact, that leads me to today’s devotional which is really why I wrote today. God is so good in light of my need of Him! Again, I am going to quote from the book  JESUS CALLING by Sarah Young. 

I am ever so near you, hovering over your shoulder, reading every thought. People think that thoughts are fleeting and worthless, but yours are precious to Me. I smile when you think lovingly of Me. My Spirit, who lives within you, helps you to think My thoughts. As your thinking goes, so goes your entire being. Let Me be your positive Focus. When you look to Me, knowing Me as God with you, you experience Joy. This is according to My ancient design, when I first crafted man…I planted that longing in human souls, knowing that only I could fully satisfy it. Delight yourself in Me; let Me become the Desire of your heart.

Psalm 37: 4-7, 23-24 Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord. Trust him and he will do this. He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun. Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him…If the Lord delights in a man’s way, he makes his steps firm, though he stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand.

These particular scriptures are really important to me-have been for a long time for so many reasons.  I do know that 3 children are here in our family because of claiming this promise–my youngest child among them. I know of many other blessings of the Lord as well. Each time it is easier to wait on Him, knowing the blessing is coming. So let us all be careful of our thoughts! Our holy God’s Spirit does live within us!

Surely God Is My Salvation; I Will Trust And Not Be Afraid, Isaiah 12:2

The verse in the title came from my devotional this morning. I should finish it…  “The Lord, the Lord, is my strength and my song; He has become my salvation”. The Lord told me that hardships come my way as part of my journey. He is careful as He allows them and exactly how hard they are! But He said to not retreat in fear from the afflictions, since they are among His most favored gifts.  This was from the book JESUS CALLING  by Sarah Young.

Now let me tell you why this was so very important to me this morning. Last night, we had gotten home from a short visit to the Panhandle of Florida (more news on that later) but I had been short of breath and my chest had hurt increasingly as I coughed or laughed. So I had used my nebulizer, taken my other meds and just gone to bed early. I knew there was no way that I wanted to go to the ER on a Saturday night in Atlanta! I slept most of the night propped up on multiple pillows and had a neck pillow for my head.  My husband had thought a heating pad would help, so I used that too. Still we woke up early, not having gotten a lot of sleep. It was a rough night! Oh how much I prayed about NOT going to the hospital again! I prayed in the early morning, really having a running conversation with the Lord because by then, He had told me to go. I begged and pleaded not to have to or even just to go to Immediate Care, but no, He was so insistent. I can’t laugh, because it hurts, but I think now back on our conversation, He was very gentle, but like I said, so compelling me to go there!

So off we went. Everyone thought I had thrown another clot. I kept saying, ” I don’t have sticky blood!”, but the symptoms were there. The problem was that they needed to get an IV in the crook of the arm area. NOT the best vein area for me. I have the tiniest veins! It took 2 IV nurses and a sonogram machine to get the IV in a vein that didn’t blow! I have bruises everywhere else. The good news is/was that it wasn’t another clot! The bad news is that it seems I have pleurisy-and oh my goodness, does it ever hurt! They treat it with steroids, just like my asthma, so once they kick in, perhaps I’ll feel better. Steroids generally gave me energy and took away my RA pain. I certainly pray they will take away the lung pain. I have to admit to being pretty miserable with it.

And yet, I truly can say, thank you Lord! Thank you for the check up which I apparently needed. Yes, He knew that. And yes, I can praise Him through the pain as He is my Strength and my Song. Still, I would appreciate your prayers as I recuperate.

RETHINKING THINGS…

I reblogged two posts tonight that I had written when I was in the hospital last summer with a pulmonary embolism. I had been reading through past posts of 2013 and kept going right into 2012 until I came to July. Not that I have ever forgotten that I wrote what I wrote about Hebrews 1 & 2, it’s just that I hadn’t gone back and read it since last July. As I read, it became very clear to me that God was writing both of those posts! I was very ill and pretty out of it with that embolism. I remember clearly Him telling me to read the scripture every morning and then He would put me to sleep and make those scriptures come alive in my dreams. Those,  I will never forget- I can still see them in my mind’s eye so fresh as if it were yesterday. So I thought the message needed to be repeated, perhaps even more now than then. God only knows who will read them now.

I pray it makes a difference in somebody’s life