The Meaning of Life

Meaning Of Life | What is it all about? What is the meaning of life? What is our purpose here? This is an age-old question, and in fact, you probably have joked about it at some point, right? | #podcast #christianpodcast #meaningoflife #life #ChristianFaithThe Meaning of Life Episode 144

What is it all about? What is the meaning of life? What is our purpose here? This is an age-old question, and in fact, you probably have joked about it at some point, right? The meaning of life is clearly unfolded in the books of Sacred Scripture but can we read between the lines? In this episode, we will delve into the way the Lord reveals Himself to us in His Word.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, Inc. and the featured books, A Few Minutes with God and One More Child. 

Listening to various sermons online from some of the best preachers has been so eye-opening for me. I learn something new every day or perhaps glean a new insight that has escaped me in the past. In the last episode, we spoke about Pentecost – the infilling of the Holy Spirit after Jesus left this world and went up to heaven. He promised he would not leave us or abandon us and sending His Spirit gives us comfort.

As a Christian, I know that Jesus is the way the truth and the Life and that whoever believes in Him has salvation. The Resurrected Lord appeared to the disciples after His death and there were many eyewitnesses which is why even with the threat of death, the apostles would not deny Him. He appeared to them and selected another apostle to take the place of Judas who betrayed Him and He selected Mathias. We learn from the Scriptures that Mathias had been traveling with them all along and had been learning from the Lord just as the others had. But, something called to the Lord to select Him as a replacement. Have you ever wondered why? Remember we’ve discussed how the New Testament is a fulfillment of the Old Testament of the Bible. And the number twelve was significant so it makes sense that the twelve apostles would symbolize the power of God through the new Evangelism – the new testimony of His witnesses. Because they were filled with the Holy Spirit the power of God was working within them. They would be able to share the good news that all was not lost and that the salvation of many would take place.

God works through us in the same way as He worked through His apostles and we see this through salvation History. In the Old Testament God began His revelation in the beginning – when He created the heavens and the earth. And even after the fall of man in Genesis 3:15

We know that “your offspring and hers” – hers signifying Mary and He signifying Christ. Christ crushed the head of the beast, while the beast only wounded his heel – in the Crucifixion, the heels of Christ were pierced. The verses of Scripture are so rich and continue to reveal more and more each time we read them. From the beginning, we were promised salvation from evil – and the Word was made flesh and lived among us. Let’s look at Hebrews 1:1-14

In God’s own words the mystery of life is revealed. God reveals himself constantly through the years as they unfold in the Scriptures. He shows himself in the created order, in the world he gave us, in the natural beauty, and even in us – in the humans, he created in His image… He shows himself through the revelation and the witness of the prophets in Hebrews we read that – He revealed Himself in his covenants – with Abraham and the 12 tribes of Israel – one of the descendants from this tribe was David where Mary and Joseph’s lineage can be traced. From this covenant, he laid down the laws as they were revealed and he made his promises to the people.

But, in no way even with the greatness of all the words and the deeds and the miracles of the Old Testament is it surpassed by the glory that God gave us in His Son. He fully revealed Himself to us and this is the New Covenant – it is the meaning of life – it is the Word of God made flesh. If the creator of the universe could send His Son to die for us – what else is there? There is nothing else to be said – it is time to drop the proverbial microphone! It is done. It is finished. There is no other revelation that we need to know about or want, for our salvation.

As we study our faith, as we ask for a deeper understanding of the Holy Spirit as we grow in our love for what the Almighty has done for us we realize that His love for us surpasses all understanding and the meaning of our life is only in the understanding of what it means to be in Christ and to have him in us.

Yet people always ask that age-old question – “if God is so good and all-knowing how can he allow suffering…” First, even the Son of God the second person in the Trinity did not save Himself from pain and suffering. We can read all the times in the New Testament where He suffered, where he even shed blood in the Garden of Gethsemane before they came to arrest Him because He knew what was coming. Do you think he does not understand what we are going through? Do you think he could have chosen a better time in history to show up, like now—where maybe he would be deemed crazy but harmless rather than at a time where punishment for supposed blaspheme was death by crucifixion? Think about it.

God gave us His Son out of love for us – if we, humankind understood this would we not make other choices and live in harmony? It is with those people – the ones he has given free will that choices – and many times the wrong choices by selfish people who are full of pride for themselves that we all suffer. Just think about the enemy, Satan – his fault was that he was filled with pride and though He was greater than God and disliked that the angels bowed before God when he felt they should bow before him. Friends, it isn’t God who sent us death and destruction it is caused at the very hands of the people God created who have turned their backs on Him.

The meaning of life is right before us – it is in our giving of our lives to the Lord. He is here. He is waiting. He is knocking. Will you let Him in? If you have not opened yourself up to the Lord in a deeper way, get down on your knees and do it today – ask the Lord to give you the words for repentance, ask him to forgive those things you have done in your past – if you can’t remember them ask the Lord to bring them to your mind, and then He will give you forgiveness no matter what you have done! Ask Jesus to come into your life in a deeper way and offer your life to Him. Ask Him to cleanse you from all the things that are not of Him and give you a heart that wants only what is good and holy. By opening your heart, the Lord can fill the void that sense of loss that sense that no one cares or understands you. God will bring it all to you in a way that you will understand and the truth will set you free.

Let’s Pray – Dear Heavenly Father how can I thank you for revealing yourself to us through the words of the Old Testament and then giving us your son in the New? How can we thank You, Jesus, for the gift you gave or your very life for our salvation? Please send us your Holy Spirit to renew our faith to renew our wants and our needs only in You, my God. I know the purpose of my life and that is to have a life filled with the joy that Your love brings. I ask for the following needs, You, my Jesus know my heart …. If it is your will, and in

Pentecost

Pentecost | The truth can set you free, and on Pentecost, the Apostles were filled with the Holy Spirit and became embolden speaking in tongues, in languages they did not know. How can we be filled with this spiritual influence and use it in our everyday lives to go out and proclaim the good news? | #podcast #christianpodcast #holyspirit #GodsGift #TheSpiritofGodPentecost Beginning For Christians ~ Episode 143

The truth can set you free, and on Pentecost, the Apostles were filled with the Holy Spirit and became embolden speaking in tongues, in languages they did not know. How can we be filled with this spiritual influence and use it in our everyday lives to go out and proclaim the good news?

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, Inc. and the featured books, A Few Minutes with God and One More Child. 

I have several other podcasts on the topic of the Holy SpiritGifts of the Holy Spirit and Family  of the Holy Spirit  

As I shared in a previous podcast I had a revelation that without the Holy Spirit it is difficult for us to understand faith, and to understand Biblical principles. What is so clear to me seems fuzzy to some, and what is so clear to my pastors or teachers sometimes seems difficult for me to understand. We have different levels of understanding in academics, right? For some calculus or maybe writing a 20-page essay may come easy, but others may look at these two topics and say, no way! I can’t do either! For academics, we need to study, but sometimes studying doesn’t mean we can understand the material – we need to study about faith as well and expose ourselves to readings and a good book.

With faith, we understand what we are capable of understanding at that time and place. But one thing I’ve always been in awe of is the faith of a child. My grandchild sometimes says things to me that leaves me breathless in their faith and thoughts about God.

Faith is a gift and it is given freely. The answer to this call is totally up to us. If we look at the Holy Word of God the Bible we will see that throughout salvation history, God the Father revealed Himself to us. How did He do this? We see it in the garden when he walked with our first parents. Can you imagine walking with God the Father? We see it when they sinned against God and he prophetically shared in Genesis 3:15 – This was the foreshadowing of the coming of Christ who would defeat evil. In the Old Testament, we continue to read about a God who lead an imperfect people. But we also read that when we see Jesus, we see the Father. And, after Jesus rose from the dead He sent the Spirit. Pentecost Sunday is celebrated seven weeks after Easter. It is a reminder to us about the ability to be ready at all times, and the infilling of the Holy Spirit will open your mind and heart to all that is good and Holy.

Where is the Holy Spirit in your life? On Pentecost, we Christians celebrate this awakening of awareness and understanding of God – we see that in our imperfection we are made whole and we are loved by the Father, the Son, and the Spirit. When we pray, we are opening ourselves up to gifts that are greater than anything we can even imagine on earth, and if you are like me—your imagination can be grand! How can we stay in our complacency when our eyes have been opened to the glory that is available, freely from our God? He is ready with all the gifts of the Holy Spirit and waiting for us to open our hands in the ready for what He has to offer to us! Not the neighbor down the street, not to other people who you think are more worthy, but to us! If we continue to live our lives on our own terms there can be no change in us for the better. I hear all of these talks about being the “best person you can be,” but at what cost? So many people walk around miserable and unhappy. Happiness, true happiness is based upon faith! It is a deep-down realization that we are not alone and we are in the care of a Heavenly Father.

Do we live life on our terms? Are we really open to the glorious blessings that the Almighty has in store for us? The gifts of the Holy Spirit — God is greater than all the kings and kingdoms of this world, all the great men and women that we see or know about because they are famous, and God does not puff Himself up sharing His importance with us—no, He comes to us in humility. Do you want to get to know God? Humility is your key.

Years ago I met a man whose father held very important positions and was a remarkable man in intellect. He was knighted by the Queen of England and was now know with the title of “Sir” … so teasingly I asked this man, who was sitting at the table in our home, if we had royalty in our midst. He humbly smiled and said something like, only in Christ are we truly heirs to the Kingdom. That resonated with me… only in Christ are we heirs.

Christ did not shy away from humility in the life he lived with Joseph and Mary. The life of a poor carpenter. God could have claimed all the riches of the earth, yet he lived among the people who were detached from worldly goods. He also didn’t leave us alone. He promised and advocate – the Holy Spirit.

In Acts 2 – you should read the entire chapter, but it talks about the effects of the Holy Spirit among the 12 that were hidden in the upper room, where it was believed that Mary was with them. She had been left under the care of John, the Apostle by Jesus at the foot of the cross. If he was hiding out in the upper room, I’m sure he would not have abandoned the mother of our Savior! You can read about the apostles speaking in tongues because that is what we typically read and hear – but I want to point out Acts 2: 17-20 It was a reminder of the prophet Joel from the Old Testament – the New Testament we are reminded over and over again is a fulfillment of the Old.

Some think the Holy Spirit was only for then—not now, but that is not true. First let’s look at the gifts of the Holy Spirit: wisdom, understanding, counsel, knowledge, fortitude, piety, and fear of the Lord. But let’s look at what comes after these gifts! After these gifts come to the fruits – especially for those who are open to God in their life Scripture always tells us we can judge others, their motivations, and intentions by their fruits. If you say you are a Christian how are you showing it? Just in words or in deeds?

… In Galatians 5: 22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

Friends we can’t do it alone. I pray this for you, today is a new beginning and all things for us are impossible but with God all things are possible

Let’s Pray – Dear God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit we ask for an infilling of all of the gifts of your Holy Spirit not so that we can boast but so that you can be glorified. Help us to grow deeper in the love of You – help us to be detached from the things of this world and know that you hold the meaning of joy and a fulfilled life… I ask for the gifts and the fruits of the Spirit so I can better serve you each day. I ask for the following prayer requests and intentions… Dear Lord if it is your will I ask that these requests and intentions be heard. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Christian Faith Essentials

Faith Essentials | Have you packed your Christian faith essentials away, or do you have them on hand when you fight the enemy? How do we explain the way our lives have changed over the course of the last few months...| #podcast #christianpodcast #podcastsforchristians #Christianity #Christianfaith #faith #essentialsforfaith #Acts2Christian Faith Essentials Episode 142

Have you packed your Christian faith essentials away, or do you have them on hand when you fight the enemy? How do we explain the way our lives have changed over the course of the last few months of shelter at home and fear of getting sick from a virus? In this episode, we look at Acts 2 and how the essentials of faith have been laid out in the Bible.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, Inc. and the featured books, A Few Minutes with God and One More Child. 

If you have listened to A Few Minutes with God I end each session with a prayer, usually, I summarize what we’ve discussed and I ask the Lord for a blessing on the listeners as well as a time for prayer for our special intentions. But I had an aha moment while listening to a sermon on television. And it answered a nagging question I had about the disciples. Why couldn’t they understand the Lord’s teachings, why did they find his message too difficult and many turned away. And the answer was because they did not yet have an infilling of the Holy Spirit–the Lord was still with them and after he rose and left for heaven He would send down the Holy Spirit to dwell among them! And then another aha moment – we should begin each episode with prayer! So, here we go…

Dear Lord, I ask that you send your Holy Spirit so that you give me the words you want me to use as well as my listeners a heart to hear what you want them to hear — Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and enkindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And you shall renew the face of the earth. Oh God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant us in the same Spirit to be truly wise and ever rejoice in His consolation. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

We learn that after Jesus rose from the dead there were fifty days of celebration, and Jesus is the only person in recorded history who rose from the dead. He, in turn, brought other people back from the dead, Lazurus is the one that everyone who knows Scripture recalls, but no one has come back to life, with eyewitnesses except for Christ. The story of salvation is the greatest story ever told and we are the recipient of this gift. If we look at Acts 2 we will see that the Lord did not leave us without the most wonderful gift of all, the Holy Spirit.

The word “Trinity” does not appear in Scripture but Christians define this as one God, three persons. God the Father, God the Son (Jesus) and God the Holy Spirit. As I said earlier, Jesus gave these amazing teachings to the disciples and I always wondered why they didn’t get it but they did when they received His Holy Spirit! (Many times we do not understand the fullness of the Scriptures but I feel sometimes it is like an onion with layers being removed one by one as God touches our hearts and the teachings are applicable to us in our current state of understanding or need.) The Holy Spirit opens our hearts and our minds to a greater awareness and understanding.

He promises to send his disciples the Holy Spirit… in John 14:15-31 and I’ll read an expert for you but please, look this up in your Bibles and meditate on these words. What beautiful words! I am going away and I am coming back to you! Do we think about the Holy Spirit? I have two podcasts on the Topic the first is on The Holy Spirit and the other Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit seems to be misunderstood by some, but when we read Acts 2 we see a complete picture of the power of God. We have the entirety of the Bible and we are blessed. We see the power of God the Father in the creation of the world, and the Son was with the Father as was the Spirit during the beginning of time as we know it. We see the power of the justice of God in the expelling of our first parents in the Garden of Eden, sin must have a punishment and restitution. And we see it happen again and again through our salvation history. God promises us salvation. We see it in the sacrifice of Abraham tested in faith as he offers up his son Isaac but God intervenes. We see God’s intervention against the slavery of the Hebrew nation under the Egyptians. We read that God heard the cries of his people and sends Moses. We watch as Moses leads the people to freedom as they cross the Red Sea (a foreshadowing – and signifying Christian baptism). But, what happens? The people forget their God and are forced to wander around for 40 years!

God sent the Holy Spirit – we read in Acts 2

Coming of the Holy Spirit Acts 2:1-4

When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” 

So, what happened? Did they stay in the safety of the house? Were they still scared? No! They were given Divine grace to begin speaking in other languages, and the knowledge to understand the teachings and the foundation that the Lord gave them for the three years they walked with Him. We too need to study, to seek and to pray for the infilling of the Spirit so we can proclaim the good news.

The people who heard them were amazed and they realized something was miraculous – Acts 2:1:12.  “So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?”

But, Peter – who is considered the first Pope stood up with the eleven, and explained because He was filled with the Spirit and given wisdom and understanding – so much so that he was able to show that Jesus was a fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecy.

Peter went on to attest that Jesus of Nazareth performed miracles, wonders, and signs – and while he was crucified and put to death, God raised Him – he then went on to explain by the words of David, again in the Scriptures what was said, prophetically about Christ. He also explained that while David who was revered and acclaimed was still dead, and buried while Christ has risen and they were the eye-witnesses.

Read all of Acts 2 – pray and meditate on these words, they are truly essential to the Christian faith! And especially in times of stress or when we feel deserted or oppressed, we must remember that the Lord is with us until the end of times.

Let’s pray –

My God your works and splendor continue to astound me, and the infilling and power of the Holy Spirit is something I crave in my life. Help me oh, Lord to decrease so that you can increase in my life. Allow me to be an open book, to be used, and to be transformed. Let the old fall away and let the new reflect You, your light, and your goodness. Continue to enrich me Lord and bring me to a deeper understanding of your goodness and will in my life. Dear Lord, I come before you humbly with the following prayers and petitions… I praise you ahead of time for all that you have done in my life and I pray this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Faith Tested

Faith Tested | During this time of quarantine and stay-at-home orders, we've experienced faith tested under pressure. It seems that it was a time of growth for many | #podcast #christianpodcast #christian #stress #faithunderpressure #faithtested #helpforChristiansFaith Tested Under Pressure – Episode 140

During this time of quarantine and stay-at-home orders, we’ve experienced faith tested under pressure. It seems that it was a time of growth for many but panic for some who have not yet experienced the providence of God. In this episode we discuss how your faith tested can come out stronger than ever.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, Inc. and the featured books, A Few Minutes with God and One More Child. 

Before I begin, let’s pray. Dear Lord, I ask that you send your Holy Spirit so that you give me the words you want me to use as well as my listeners a heart to hear what you want them to hear — Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and enkindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And you shall renew the face of the earth. Amen.

When faith is tested it either brings out the worse or the best in people. Our true colors are showing and for some, it doesn’t look too good! In order for our faith to hold up it needs to have a firm foundation, right? And that foundation needs work, it needs time and it needs pouring into ourselves first before we can pour into others.

When things happen and we do not have control we typically cry, “Why me Lord? Why is this happening to me?” Instead, we should say, “Why me Lord, what have I done to deserve the beauty of heaven that you have reserved for me!” Can you imagine if we could turn every complaint into a praise report? I’ve taken Jesus for granted. I’ve taken the ability to enter my church for granted. I’ve taken my health for granted. I’ve taken my kids for granted. Just think, friends. God brought the children home – and not just here in the US but all over the world schools were closed. How did we use this time, did we embrace our children tell them we love them and thank God for this unexpected blessing?

Each and every day is a gift from God. Jesus died for our sins, he was raised from the dead, hundreds of people saw Jesus after His resurrection. Read Acts 2 which contain the basics essential to faith, and we will discuss this in the next podcast.

But our faith has been tested, just like the Hebrews who were rescued from the Egyptians by Moses under the direction of Almighty God the Father we have forgotten our deliver! We have been in quarantine many approaching 40 days or more! What have we learned? For me, it has been an eye-opening experience and I pray that the Lord never lets me forget the longing I had for Him during this time!

Just like you, my schedule has pretty much been shredded. My routine of attending church each morning turned into watching a pre-recorded or live church service on television. The sermons were astounding and I’ve taken pages of notes, and while I feel like I’ve been in a Bible boot camp, I still miss that connection with Jesus. I didn’t realize how much I would miss Holy Communion.  My brother who grew up Catholic (and I dearly love) who now attends a Protestant church, was trying to console me when I told him how much I missed receiving Communion at church. He was super sweet and told me not to worry, to spend time in Scripture to pray as a family! While this is wonderful advice, it is something I do each day in addition to attending church, so for me, a vital piece is missing. This distance from God in the Eucharist has forced me to grow in faith and to realize that I took so much for granted.

John 6:54-71  

Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed.

Many Disciples Turn Away – Friends – Have you come to believe and know that Christ is the Son of the living God? Do we worship Him each and every day even when our faith is tested? We can ask for an infilling of the Holy Spirit to come into our lives in a deeper way. If you want an infilling of the Holy Spirit pray and you will receive!

Let’s Pray:

Dear Father, Son and Holy Spirit we come before you with eyes opened that under this test that has fallen upon the entire world we see that we have taken You, our faith, our family, our friends for granted. We have taken our freedom for granted, the ability to leave our homes whenever we want. We have taken our finances for granted. But no more! Dear Lord, send us an infilling of your Holy Spirit to open our eyes, to discover our sins, and to repent. Lord, you make crooked lines straight and I ask you in to my life today to mend those places of hurt and to give me Your love and peace. Dear Lord, I pray for the following needs… thank-you and praise you Almighty God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit for the gift of faith and for answering our prayers. Amen.

Glory and Praise Forever

Glory and Praise | Recently I was reminded that we don't talk enough about giving God all the glory and praise, and honor He deserves. | #podcast #christianpodcast #gloryandpraise #gloryandpraisetoourGod #christianworship #worshipGod #christianfaith #faith #ChristianityGlory and Praise Forever ~ Episode 140

Recently I was reminded that we don’t talk enough about giving God all the glory and praise, and honor He deserves. In this episode of A Few Minutes With God Podcast, Felice shares the importance of praise in worship in our lives.

Thanks to our sponsor – 40: The Temptation of Christ

Recently I was reminded that we don’t talk enough about giving God all the glory and praise, and honor He deserves. In this episode of A Few Minutes With God Podcast, Felice shares the importance of praise in worship in our lives.

We are so busy with our own lives and our own problems that while we might consider God from time to time in the sense of asking for something. We more often than not throw up pleading prayers and say, “Please, Lord – can you do my will?” I am guilty of this, and I am sure that many of you would agree as well. Of course, we should believe, and we should pray and ask the Lord for help. But what about those times we feel like he is not answering us or we don’t feel he is even near?

The keyword here is “feel.” Please know that if you have confessed that Jesus Christ is the Lord of your life and you have attempted to live a life pleasing to the Lord – He. Is. With. You. And He is with me! How could we not want to give God the glory and praise He so rightly deserves?

As Christians, we should live our lives in a way that is pleasing to God because we know that what matters is the next life as nothing in this life is constant or stays the same. This life is fleeting. Nothing is meaningful without God – and He is our help and support in times of darkness and trouble. Jesus wants our hearts even when we have sinned and are ashamed; sin isolates us from God. It keeps us away from Him. Sin requires restitution – it requires some type of forgiveness. And, Jesus gives this freely if we ask.

I did some reading of spiritual books during the time of Lent and was so blessed to re-read a book by Sr. Briege McKenna, who I’ve talked about in a previous podcast, who is known as the healing nun. She did not want the gift of healing even though she was completely healed from a crippling disease of arthritis. She was wheelchair-bound at this point, and in a time of prayer, she felt God heal her – she said it was like a banana being peeled. While she was grateful and stood up and gave God all the glory and praise, she immediately started putting conditions on her healing and asked the Lord not to tell anyone.

Yes, she was a nun, but she was not in a cloistered order – meaning that she was around people, she was a teacher and lived in a community and had many chances to interact with people. Yet she still resisted this gift. At a certain point, she finally realized that it was indeed a gift of God, and she would try in her humility to allow God to work within her. She also spoke about the times she spent in prayer no less than three hours each day. She explained that in this time of prayer, she learned about healing and why some were healed, and others were not and also, how she could be an instrument of God’s love in all cases.

She also shared about her times of temptation when she went to “prophet,” who turned out to be a false prophet and an instrument of the devil – and how she encountered Satan that night, and her life was almost taken. When we open ourselves to evil, it allows the door to be opened, and this was a warning to us all.

Do you feel a block in your spiritual life that keeps you from praise and worship? Look at the scriptures and the warnings – 1 Corinthians 15:33 – Do not be deceived: Bad company corrupts good morals.

There is so much demonic influence in our world today with all of the occult movies. I’ve seen some of the commercials, and those are horrific. Why would anyone watch them? Even things such as ESP (extra sensory perception), haunted houses, astrology – which by the way is scientifically proven incorrect, vampires, zombies and on and on and on. Can a movie be considered evil? No, but leading one into sin can never be good – we have to be a willing participant in that sin, and guard our eyes from everything that is not going to be of benefit for us.

Matthew 6:22 – “The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light.

And Genesis 3:5 Genesis 3:5 (Read online)

For many, our eyes are closed, and praising God is the last thing we want to do – yet did you know in your praises God resides, and if you have ever wanted to be filled with the Holy Spirit of God, it is time to use your tongue for good! Miracles happen when we are praising God. Sister Briege spoke about what she does in her three hours of prayer, and she said she begins with a time of praise and worship because that helps her to forget the cares of the day.

Can we do that in our lives, begin the day with giving God the glory and praise and leave aside just for a short time the cares of the day, our schedules, what we are supposed to do next? When we pray, we are often distracted right? And, those other thoughts come into our minds – even when at church. We should pray the Lord’s prayer, Matthew 6:10 reminds us, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”

Psalm 26:8 – “Oh Lord, I love the habitation of thy house, and the place where thy glory dwells.”

When we praise God, He shows up; He is in the midst of our praises. Some time back, I did a podcast on the praise and worship songs that lift me up, and after hearing them, I am ready to do anything the Lord wills! I am so excited to start my day in this way. Yet, life starts to creep in, and our habits change, and then we find ourselves in despair. You are not alone! I’m right there with you from time to time.

As I’m writing this, a funny story comes to mind. I was in labor with my third child, and I was super excited to be able to be in the deluxe birthing suite! Years ago, with my first two children, no such thing existed—I was in a sterile, surgical room where surgeries were performed. Well, the hospital was full, and there was no room in the proverbial inn – so instead, I was placed in an intensive care unit – while waiting for a room to open up. The nurses were super sweet and told me that I may have ugly accommodations but the best nurses and for any of you who have been in ICU, they are amazing. When the nurses left the pain became stronger. As the pain intensified, I started to praise and worship the Lord! I was really getting into my praises when my husband, who was sitting beside me holding my hand, squeezed it and asked me to lower my voice – apparently, as the pain levels were rising, so were my praises. Yet I did not feel the pain as much at that point and went on to deliver a healthy baby boy who will be twenty-five this year.

Our praises should be from the heart, and we can look at the Scriptures to give us reasons to praise God. 1 Chronicles 16:23-27

Proclaim good tidings of His salvation from day-to-day. Tell of His glory among the nations, His wonderful deeds among all the peoples. For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; He also is to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the peoples are [a]idols, But the Lord made the heavens. Splendor and majesty are before Him, Strength and joy are in His place. Do we only praise God when we believe?

Take a look at how you praise the Lord. Make your own list, and truthfully you can begin to praise God anywhere, even in a line at the grocery store!

I tend to start with a litany of praises? Mine tends to be the same… “I praise you, and I thank you, Lord! You are the King of kings, the Lord of lords, the Bright Morning Star, you are the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end – you are the Name above all names… we can find litanies in prayer books, and I’m sure online if you search, but I feel the best ones are the ones that come from the heart inspired by the Holy Spirit if you have a prayer language use it!

Let’s Pray:

Lord, you inhabit our praises, and I ask that you, please inhabit mine – I know you are here with me now – help me to worship you more frequently and in all things. Thank you, my God, for the gift of faith for the gift of love and for the gift of trust that You are in control and love me greater than anyone else because I was specially chosen and created by you – my Dear Lord I ask you for blessings and for the following people and intentions I pray for now… and I ask this in Your Name, Jesus. Amen.

 

 

Fireproof Faith

Fireproof Faith | How strong is your belief in Christianity? Are you a weekend Christian or do you have fireproof faith? In this episode of A Few Minutes With God Podcast, Felice shares how all of us need put on the armor of Christ, each and every day. | #podcast #Christianpodcast #fireprooffaith #faith #Christianfaith #faithwalkFireproof Faith ~ Episode 139

How strong is your belief in Christianity? Are you a weekend Christian or do you have fireproof faith? In this episode of A Few Minutes With God Podcast, Felice shares how all of us need put on the armor of Christ, each and every day.

Thanks to our sponsor – 40: The Temptation of Christ

As I think about the movie 40: The Temptation of Christ I remember specific scenes of Him wandering in the desert. This was a time for Him to go away and pray. He was filling himself with strength from the Father.

Often we are tempted to believe only what we can see, what is right in front of us and when we look at our lives objectively we may or may not like what we see. How can a righteous Lord, we ask, allow all the turmoil and problems in this world?

Recently I heard a talk where the pastor said that faith and hardships go hand in hand. That those who love the Lord and believe still have trials to go through. If you do not believe that think about the life of Christ. In the desert Jesus suffered, in His life, Jesus suffered, in His passion, the Garden, the scourging, the crowning of thorns, the nailing to the cross, He suffered. He suffered willingly and died for our sins…those past and those we have not even committed yet.

Our world teaches the opposite. Do what you want and be free to live your life in any way you want. And, this freedom does indeed come to us but from a righteous God who allows humankind to have free will.

The closer we grow in our walk with the Lord the clearer we see our own sinfulness. Believe me, this doesn’t happen overnight. I was in the righteous crowd not in the too far distant past. In fact, if truth be told, I probably was President of the Holier Than Thou Club. Of course, I was on the right path as a God-fearing, prayer saying, Mass attending Christian I was doing all the right things. But every time there was a problem, I’d crumble and say, “Why me? What now? What I am I to do?”

Fireproof Our Faith

We need to fireproof our faith it needs to be shored up in Christ so that we can weather the storms that are sure to come in this life. I think part of the issue stems from the fact that while we do not physically see Jesus, yet as a believer, we must know He is here. Right here. But it is a faith issue.

The Pharisees in John, Chapter 7 verses 30-36 kept trying to have Jesus prove He was the Messiah, but even if they saw Him perform miracles they still didn’t believe. Today so many people who say they believe in “a God” or “have faith” are still struggling with the faith they profess. That is not to point fingers but a fact we all deal with from time to time. It is easy to say, “praise you Jesus,” when everything is working out in our lives, but much harder to say, “praise you Jesus in all things,” when it is not. Praising God in everything is when we have real faith. The faith that surpasses all understanding.

We need that living water in our lives. Living water is a way to fireproof our faith.

John 7:37-38 (Read on air.)

Verse 38 bears repeating: “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’”

Living water puts out the fire! Living water cleanses us from sin and gives us new life – this is reason to rejoice! We continue to doubt because we live lives that are so sad and filled with worry. But, God hears us. Even if we don’t feel it – with the virus that plagued our world so many people were sick with worry because supplies were not readily available, strict travel curfews were set for our protection, and truthfully the air of uncertainty was very scary. When will it end? When will we go back to unrestricted travel, open churches and more? During this season there have been so many people that are stressed, nervous and unsure about the future. Yet we learn from Scripture that God always wins.

God has not forsaken us – He has not abandoned us, we are in the palm of His hand. We can look at Daniel Chapter 3 for an example of a situation where believers had the choice of life or death and they chose death over denying God.

I once taught a high school class at church and asked the children about the strength of their Christian belief. We discussed faith in the broadest sense, and then I asked if you were asked to forsake God or be killed what would you do? That brought about a lively discussion each has a perspective of what they would do in that situation, however, the consensus was that lying (because of course, you would not mean it) would be preferable to dying. That shows the level of faith for some. In situations of faith we often say there is no right or wrong answer, but the truth is the correct answer for a person who knows Jesus laid down his life for their sins – the sinless lamb was slain for us – should be willing to acknowledge that they would die in return. That my friends is the goal, to believe in a way that is unyielding.

Many of you are familiar with the book of Daniel, especially Chapter 3. King Nebuchadnezzar was a proud man and had destroyed many cities including conquering and invading Judea where he destroyed the temple. He had persecuted Daniel, his friends, his people. This King was renowned and today is attributed to creating one of the 7 Wonders of the Ancient World, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon.

Daniel opens with an account of King Nebuchadnezzar who had a massive gold statue built that he wanted everyone to worship. The King was informed that certain Jews who were administrators of Babylon would not bow before the graven image. This infuriated the King and he ordered these men burned in a furnace – giving orders to heat it up seven times more than usual.

When the King presented the men with an option they were firm in their faith and replied … Daniel 3:16-18 (Read on air.)
Does this describe our faith? God can deliver us from pain, suffering, difficulties in our lives and our struggles. But it is as the men prayed… if it be so, our God will deliver us – but if he does not… what then? What will we believe?

Maybe God says yes and delivers us – and if He says no, there is a greater plan a greater good. That is our hope as Christians. We praise God anyway. Faith is clinging to God in all circumstances. These men knew their lives would end in a horrible way, yet they chose death rather than forsake God.

The story goes on that even the men the King commanded who were in his army, that tied up Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego and threw them in the furnace died from the extreme heat of the blaze.

But we learn that as the King looked on he questioned the witnesses saying, Daniel 3:24-26 (Read on air.)

When they came out the witnesses saw the men were untouched by the flames, not a single hair on their heads was singed and they didn’t even smell like fire!

For this reason, the King responded…Daniel 28-29 (Read on air.)

These men had a relationship with God, and the Book of Daniel is in the Old Testament – they didn’t even know about Jesus yet! And, look at their faith.

Oh if we could only have this type of faith! But we can! If we praise God in all things we will also find that our praises will lift up our spirits. We are weak when we let the enemy infiltrate our thoughts and cause us to stumble in sin. God inhabits our praises.

1 Peter 5:8-10 (Read on air.)

In the same way that the men resisted bowing down to the idol – we can have new life in Christ. Do we only praise God when things go well in our lives? Or are we the Easter People that I talked about in the last podcast? A sign of our strength of faith is to praise God in all things even those things that don’t go as we would like or as we planned. In order to fireproof our faith, we must be obedient, to believe even in our unbelief. Mark 9:24 “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

Recently when something traumatic happened to a member of my family I held tight in my prayer and I was so uptight and upset. It was a situation that was totally out of my hands and I had no control, yet I believe in God and therefore believe in miracles. I had several sleepless nights as I thought about the possibility of dire outcomes. (I was in the future when God is here in the now.) Once I gave these negative thoughts over to the Lord and said, “Your will Lord not mine,” only then did I feel peace. Once we unite our will to that of the Lord’s we become obedient children and allow the Lord to work in our lives – He is a God of miracles, and I for one can’t wait to see what He will do with our yes!

Let’s Pray:

Oh my Jesus, you are the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. You are the living water, the great I AM – you are the Alpha and the Omega the beginning and the end. I believe and I ask you to come into my life and fireproof my faith. I realize in my trials I am weak, but I know that you are strong. Dear Lord, I ask you to bless me abundantly with the gift of faith and the good news that you are here now. Dear Heavenly Father, Son and, Holy Spirit please hear the prayers that I ask for today… in your infinite wisdom and mercy my God I ask for you to bless those I prayed for and if it is your will, answer these prayers. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Penance and Spirituality

Penance and Spirituality | Do penance and spirituality go hand-in-hand? In this episode, Father David talks about the necessity of understanding that all hardships in life are worth learning from and ways to increase your love of all things holy. | #podcast #christianpodcast #Christianity #Christian #Spirituality #Christianfaith #penancePenance and Spirituality – Episode 23

Do penance and spirituality go hand-in-hand? In this episode, Father David talks about the necessity of understanding that all hardships in life are worth learning from and ways to increase your love of all things holy.

Look for Father David’s book  Evangelizing Catholic Culture: A New Vision For A New Creation on Amazon here.

Merciful Penitential Spirituality

Introduction: As I begin preparation for this “show” or podcast presentation on the topic of “Penitential Spirituality”, my mind is full of the many things which the President of Franciscan University just presented to the University community regarding necessary action in relation to the coronavirus pandemic for a specific action. For example, the closing of all public Masses until a later date.

This worldwide pandemic and its subsequent consequences are a major crisis for humanity. The impact is affecting everything in our way of life. This afternoon I spent a bit of time reviewing some of the major and minor Prophets words to the people when they had violated the Covenant by rebellion and social injustice. At some point, God seemed to say that it is enough! And he usually allowed major devastation to occur in the Nation. In other words, the people came under judgment! These were generally very painful and destructive periods in the life of the Nation. This chaos would last until the people realized their sin and commenced to do significant social and individual repentance. Yahweh would then forgive them, and then pour out his abundant mercy upon them. However, formal communal and individual public repentance had to come first. I cannot help wondering if the whole of present humanity has not come under God’s judgment because of the horrendous sins of the Nation and Humankind.

What does scripture say about penance and spirituality?

“I urge you therefore, brothers and sister, by the mercies of God, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, your spiritual worship. Do not conform yourselves to this age, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern or know (what is the will of God, what is good, and pleasing and perfect. (Rom. 12:1-2)

Turn back to the Lord and do penance (Lent). Doing penance is being renewed in mind, heart, and spirit. Penance is a wonderful and beautiful grace that brings the Father’s mercy and the transforming power of the Spirit of God into our minds and hearts.

The beautiful graces of God’s abundant mercy are the first part of the story. However, the second part of the story is the experience of Divine love in our hearts, which enables us to generously to the power of the Cross of Jesus by our corporation and participation in this dynamic grace of this transforming union. By living a penitential life, we make up by our love, responding generously to all that God has done for us. Our goal in being merciful penitents is to live in Christ the life of the New Creation. It is all about a way of life called love. These tremendous graces generate an experience of Spirit-filled love and life-giving repentance as merciful penitents. We make up for what is lacking in the Body of Christ.

The spirituality of being merciful penitents opens the door for us to treasure each suffering and trial in the present moment, thanking the Lord for what he places before us, and gives us the strength to enter into the sufferings of Jesus, because we are living in the Eternal perspective. Many times we see our sufferings vanishing, and only love remains in the soul.

To unite our suffering to his means to enter his own dynamic of suffering love—sharing in his light, and, strength, and peace. It means to discover within us a new and abundant presence of God. To unite every suffering with Christ on the Cross means to become one with him and in him, instruments and unique gifts of saving love, by leading others whom we serve with his mercy into the Kingdom. For those called to a penitential way of life, there is a special gift of grace one is given called Crucified Love and Mercy, an empowered penitent in the New Creation—it consists of a penitent’s power, life, and wisdom for loving and serving others. These gifts of grace flow from the Father’s heart through the pierced Heart of Christ. These rivers of grace-filled mercy make us fruitful merciful penitents living in a time of spiritual renewal and reform.

 

Children Are A Blessing

Children are a blessings | Are the children in your life a blessing? For many of us we do not realize the impact our children can have on society and in the lives of so many people. Felice Gerwitz and Denise Mira discuss the blessings and the hardships. | #podcast #christianpodcast #childrenareablessing #blessings #children #raisingchristiankids #christiankidsChildren Are A Blessing Episode 33 with Denise Mira

Are the children in your life a blessing? For many of us we do not realize the impact our children can have on society and in the lives of so many people. Felice Gerwitz and Denise Mira discuss the blessings and the hardships.

Visit Denise Mira on her website DeniseMira.com and her books and free products.

A handout from Denise Mira here: Children are a BLESSING!

Have we forgotten that our children are a blessing? Family life is supposed to be wonderful or that is what we perceive in the lives of our friends (or your fellow podcasters 🙂 But the truth is that we work really hard at avoiding the difficulties in our lives and turning to the sources that sell us lies. There are many books online that promise to have the truth to parenting and all fall short.

Women are encouraged to be feminists or they are guilted into thinking they’ve shunned the “cause” if they are not part of the culture. Our churches have become secularized and the truth is there if you read in between the lines. Where is the truth? Should you just have one child? Is anything more irresponsible for our planet? (That is the biggest lie I’ve heard repeated over and over again!

Points Covered in the Episode: Children Are a Blessing.

  1. My story: raised by Barbie
  2. The most powerful resource on the planet
  3. Gift or curse?
  4. Did feminism free women?
  5. The secularized church
  6. Abortion: a new face on an ancient story
  7. The inestimable value of just one child
  8. The truth about female empowerment

Other Podcasts with Denise – Blessed is She Who Believes

Longing for Significance with Denise Mira

Easter People

Easter People | We are Easter people, that is we have hope and faith. In this episode of A Few Minutes with God Podcast we will discuss the amazing impact of our Savior, Jesus Christ in our lives. He has indeed risen! | #podcast #christianpodcasat #easterpeople #JesusChrist #Christian #ChristianTeaching Easter People 138

We are Easter people, that is we have hope and faith. In this episode of A Few Minutes with God Podcast we will discuss the amazing impact of our Savior, Jesus Christ in our lives. He has indeed risen!

Thanks to our sponsor – 40: The Temptation of Christ

This year our Easter service for the first time ever is going to be celebrated at home. Our churches are all closed because of the pandemic and it is a tragedy to all of us so accustomed to our joyous church celebrations, yet while sad, we have hope. And I know we will give God the glory and praise no matter what.

Easter is the holiest of holy days of the year for a Christian. It is the time we remember and recreate in our prayers and services the days leading up to the resurrection. We begin with Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane all the way to His crucifixion and then finally, the day we’ve been waiting to celebrate, the resurrection, Easter Sunday. It is time to rejoice, to celebrate. In Acts 4:2  we read…”They were greatly disturbed because the apostles…”

We need to rejoice and shout it from the rooftops, my Lord lives. Do we really think the Lord is alive today? Do we only remember one day only, Easter Sunday—or is it an ongoing celebration? Do others look at us and say, “What is different about you?” or “I want what you have.”

The power of faith transforms us from ordinary people to extraordinary heirs of the kingdom of God. We long for the resurrection and the celebration of the day because it shows us that Jesus by his sacrifice opened the doors of heaven for us. We have an advocate we have a Savior, a redeemer.

1 Corinthians 15 is the account of Christ’s resurrection from the dead written by Paul – who was once Saul and had persecuted the church and its people.

1 Corinthians 15: 3-11 (read on air)  Through the centuries unbelievers have questioned the authenticity of Jesus no so much as living on the earth, as there is a historical record of that. But, whether or not he is the Son of God. Did Jesus really raise-up from the dead? There were so many eye-witnesses and many of these died rather than deny Christ.

Acts 10:34 Peter (read on air)  The Holy Spirit is given to us – but are we open to receiving it? Do we recognize ourselves as Easter people? What about those all around us who have been given the gift of faith that –once again bears repeating – is always freely given by God, are inspired to share it with others. Easter people are those who give selflessly, are the ones who look at their own families and are satisfied without looking at others. Easter people are the ones who show the love of God by their example no matter what. They know that God has never forsaken them and he does not show partiality. Faith is a gift and salvation is not something we can earn but something God freely gives. Those who are so blessed by this gift of faith are the ones who can’t help but serve others, who share their resources, who have open hands and arms and say more of you Lord and less of me.

They are the ones that believe that the cross of Jesus Christ as horrific and painful is what transforms us because without the cross there would be no resurrection, the cross has transformed suffering into the blessings of eternal life yet to come. There is more, there is a life with God where there is no pain and suffering, not stress, no virus, no uncertainty, no strife or hurt—no depression. When we consider heaven, we picture Jesus with His arms open wide. He is waiting for us! Are we willing to deny ourselves temptations that ultimately lead us into sin? Do we want everlasting life? Christ by the power of his resurrection promised to restore all things!

Matthew 19:27-28 -(read on air)

Mark 10:28-31 (read on air)

How do we want to be received? I pray the Lord is there with open arms!

Dear Lord – we praise you and we thank you especially for the grace and blessings you have given to all of us. I ask you Lord, for your help to realize that every day is a day to celebrate, to rejoice and to be open to the Holy Spirit in our lives. Pour into us dear Lord the blessings to accomplish your will and the strength to rejoice in all things. Please bless our families and I lift up the following people that I am praying for…  and I pray this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

 

 

 

The Seventh Word of Jesus

The Seventh Word of Jesus On The Cross | What is the seventh word of Jesus on the cross? Why is this important? Have you considered the last words Jesus said and applied them to our lives and perhaps what we go through daily in our struggles? | #podcast #christianpodcast #wordsfromthecross #seventhword #Christ #JesusChrist #goodFridayThe Seventh Word of Jesus On The Cross ~ Episode 22

What is the seventh word of Jesus on the cross? Why is this important? Have you considered the last words Jesus said and applied them to our lives and perhaps what we go through daily in our struggles? Listen to this episode with Father David as he teaches us from his vast years of experience as a Catholic Priest.

Look for Father David’s book  Evangelizing Catholic Culture: A New Vision For A New Creation on Amazon here.

The Seventh Word of Jesus Crucified

“Father into your hands I commend my spirit” (Lk.23:46). In St. Luke’s account of the last word of Jesus, as he surrendered his life to the Father, Luke mentions that darkness covered the whole world (eclipse of the sun). And the veil in front of the Holy of Holies in the Temple was ripped in two. In the Church’s tradition, the word used to describe this last or seventh word of Jesus on the Cross is Reunion. Even though he felt completely abandoned by the Father he knew the truth. The surrender of Jesus was total; his gift of himself as sacrificial love was complete even though his human body was annihilated. In the Book of Revelation we read, “Behold, I make all things new!” “All things have been accomplished!” (Rev.21:5)  One of the last prayers at the end of the Last Supper lays out the goal for Jesus and for all of us, “Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, just as we are…And I have given them the glory that you gave me, so that they may be one as we are…” (Jn.17:11-26)

The Paschal Mystery, which we are about to celebrate, is in a sense the very beginning of making “all things new” on earth. (Jn.20: 19-23) The consecrated gift of the sacrificial love of the Paschal Mystery is the divine/human, threefold power of Grace, given to us as a gift of love which, enables and brings about all dimensions of transformation. It seems that on Easter Sunday morning Jesus meets Mary Magdalene at the opening of the tomb. He asks her not to touch him because he has not yet ascended to the Father. It is a different situation on Easter Sunday night. He appears to those gathered in the Upper Room fully glorified. He shows them his hands, feet and the wound in the side. When they had time to accept this magnanimous reality, he commissioned them by breathing on them and saying “receive the Holy Spirit…(Jn.20:19-23)

Easter Sunday night they receive the mystical power of the passion and crucifixion of Jesus, the power of the glorified Resurrection, and the power of the Holy Spirit and the gifts of the Spirit as the practical application of Jesus making all things new; the fullness of the Paschal Mystery. For example, some would say, the celebration of the Eucharist is the sacramental mystical participation in Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection, the Paschal Mystery.

Application: I will mention a few possibilities, however, you may be inspired to discover your own:

  1. As a result of the coronavirus pandemic life is going to be very different; may we be weaned away from an excessive materialistic mind-set and lifestyle of living.
  2. May the leaders in the Church clarify in writing the accurate moral teaching about the troubling moral positions in relationship to technical, moral, and ethical positions emerging in this country. For example, euthanasia and related suicides.
  3. In my personal life what changes do I need to make for me to be more faithful to the Lord’s will?
  4. What are some of the ways that I can be kind, tender, and loving in my relationships to others?

Behold I make all things New!

 

 

 

 

Eternal Life

Eternal Life | The things of this world are passing but for those who believe we know this is not the end but the beginning of eternal life. A life with God in heaven. | #podcast #christianpodcast #eternallife #theBible #Bible #prayers #Jesus #Christianity #Christians The things of this world are passing but for those who believe we know this is not the end but the beginning of eternal life. A life with God in heaven.

Eternal Life – Episode 137

Recently I noticed a friend of mine who has produced a Bible study about Heaven. Apparently she has been working on it for some time. But it is so perfect for today. She wrote a book called, “Heaven: How to Experience Heaven On Earth,” which is a part of a Trilogy. She goes on to explain that when we have those wonderful soul-lifting moments that it is an example of heaven on earth. In reverse when we crash and burn and have those heartwrenching issues that happen from time to time. That is hell on earth.

How much more I’d long for heaven! For that eternal life that God promises. The promises in the Bible are amazing and give us such hope. Yet, appearances deceive us. Often we make judgments based upon appearances based upon our own preconceived notions.

Obviously we do not see as God sees! Even the blind man in the gospel ends up seeing Jesus more clearly than even those who could already see. His ability to see becomes a process just as his ability to see Jesus for who He really is and in this way his faith grew. First, he knows the Name of Jesus, then he sees him as a prophet then he sees him as God then the “Son of Man.” Meanwhile, the learned at that time, the Pharisees’ sight became more and more shallow and they were the ones who were teaching people about eternal life!

We can choose to live in darkness or light. Christ is the light of the world. He assures us of eternal life because of His death (for our sins) and resurrection. He brings us life. Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead (John 11:) Read that chapter, your eyes will be open there are so many things that happen.

  1. Jesus is alerted by Martha and Mary that their brother was ill. “So the sisters sent word to him, saying, “Master, the one you love is ill.” When Jesus heard this he said, “This illness is not to end in death, but is for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” Wow! The one you love. Jesus loves us all and here we are given an example of his love. He also said, “For the glory of God, that the Son may be glorified through it.” So he was setting giving us a forewarning that there would be a miracle.
  2. Jesus then tells his disciples that he wants to go to Lazarus. The disciples warned him about going back, and then the Lord spoke about the light (Scripture read on air.) Again the symbolism – he sees the light of the world, but if one walks in the dark – there is no light in him. We must walk in the light and ask the Lord to show us that light.
  3. When Jesus arrived he found his friend had died. Martha complained to the Lord that if he had been there, her brother would not have died.  “Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live…  (Read on air.) Do we believe that? Do we believe in Jesus and have the hope of everlasting life? 
  4. Jesus wept. His friend died and he wept.  Some were empathetic with Christ and the others were critical. Just like us today we have an opinion – we know how we would do things and are critical of those that don’t agree with us. This is exactly what the Pharisees did – and Mary and Martha were familiar with Ezekiel’s prophecy “I will open our graves and have you rise from them – Ez: 37:12
  5.  The fact that Jesus did signs and wonders was terrifying because of what? Their job? Their land and their nation? In the Bible, we read: So the chief priests and the Pharisees convened the Sanhedrin and said, “What are we going to do? This man is performing many signs. (Read on air.) So from that day on they planned to kill him.— This is ridiculous to us, right? But to these supposed righteous men it made sense. They were fearful and fear makes people do things that are so horrible. 

Even though for those who believe that we have eternal life it still is difficult not to worry to be stressed and to think that we must do all of these things to be righteous. People will know we are Christians by our fruits but our good deeds alone will not get us to heaven. God knows our hearts, and just because you claim you know God does not earn you heaven. In fact, we can’t earn heaven it is a gift given by faith. And that, my friends, should cause us to rejoice.

Let’s pray!

Dear Lord, we know you have the gift of eternal life for each of us who believes that the Lord Jesus Christ is the savior and that he died for us to set us free. Dear Lord help us to believe give us the gift of faith, fill us with your Holy Spirit so that we can live lives that are pleasing that we can be filled with your love so that we can pour that love into others. I praise you and I thank you for every good thing. Please Lord hears the prayers of those I pray for now… and I pray this in Jesus, Name. Amen.

Blessed Is She Who Believes

Blessed Is She Who Believes | Faith helps us tremendously in this very volatile world, and blessed is she who believes that God can help! We will discuss various aspects of faith and how we look at the our lives in light of what God can do for us! | #podcast #christianpodcast #blessedisshe #blessedisshewhobelieves #christianwomen #authenitcwomanhood #women #womenoffaithBlessed Is She Who Believes Episode 32 with Denise Mira

Faith helps us tremendously in this very volatile world, and blessed is she who believes that God can help! We will discuss various aspects of faith and how we look at our lives in light of what God can do for us!

Visit Denise Mira and check out her books and products at DeniseMira.com 

Handout from Denise Mira Blessed is She Who Believes OMC Ep 32

Are we women of the 21st Century who believe? We can become no ordinary woman, no matter how ordinary your circumstances. Even those circumstances that seem hopeless. As women, we often struggle with ways to find relevance in the every day. The world screams at us that we must be in the workforce to feel relevance or even if we are working a job outside of the home we are under-appreciated. How can we fill our lives to overflowing so that we can pour into those around us? Family? Friends? The people we meet in our everyday lives.

Luke 1:45 ~ Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!”

  1. We must live by faith!
  2. What are we at home?
  3. Luke 1:45 on REPEAT
  4. Mary’s knew her God
  5. DARE to believe His Word
  6. Choose victory every single day
  7. Earmarks of God’s glory

Not Abandoned

Not Abandoned | I select my podcast topics typically after prayer and this topic, not abandoned was selected months ago! It seems so timely for our current situation. We are not to fear, and we have an Almighty God that calms us in the midst of the storm. Let's focus on those two points as we listen to this podcast. | #podcast #christianpodcast #notabandoned #helpwhenlost #christians #christianity #Christ #Prayer #Prayers #BibleI select my podcast topics typically after prayer and this topic, not abandoned was selected months ago! It seems so timely for our current situation. We are not to fear, and we have an Almighty God that calms us in the midst of the storm. Let’s focus on those two points as we listen to this podcast.

Not Abandoned – Episode 136

Just the word abandon upsets me. Yet we feel abandoned so many times in our lives. We feel lonely or misunderstood. I often say, “No one listens to me,” typically many times a day when my kids are home. When we apply our feelings to that of Almighty God it gives us pause.

Exodus 17:7 asked the question, “Is the Lord in our midst or not?” Even the “chosen” people asked one another this question as they traveled out of bondage into the desert. This has so much symbolism for us, doesn’t it? They were bound as slaves to the Egyptians, but we learn as we continue to read in Exodus that their minds were also bound to sin. They were slaves to sin. The wandered and wandered making mistake after mistake and ultimately while they reached the promised land, only their descendants would actually set foot upon this place, “flowing with milk and honey.” Exodus 3:8

When I read the scriptures I often see myself. I see that I often don’t trust the Lord. Why would I believe that the Lord was with the Israelites in the desert but that He is not here with me now?

Friends, we must vigilant and not let the anxiety go unchecked, anxiety leads to fear and fear leads to panic and depression. It might seem like an endless road and every time we get through one obstacle another one comes up. That is why we must choose to fill our minds with good things, with the things that will be a blessing to us and not worry or cause us to become anxious.

God is here He is providing for me and He is holding me in the palm of His hands. Isaiah 49:10

When Jesus spoke to the Samaritan woman at the well – the woman was known to be in a sinful situation, she became changed and she also told everyone about the Messiah, the Christ, the savior of the world. He was there in their midst and he is here now in ours. We gather in His Name at church, we pray in His name, we cry out to Him. Why do we get upset (or I do) when someone uses the Name of God in vain, or in a blaspheme– because I know that the Lord’s Name has significance and He is all-powerful and Almighty. If he did not abandon the woman at the well, I know my Lord and Savior will not abandon me!

What can we do so that we do not feel abandoned?

  1. Spend time with God. Just a few minutes with your eyes closed every day. Make it a habit.
  2. Read the Bible. Start out in the psalms, or read Isaiah Chapter 49
  3. Journal what you are thankful for each and every day.
  4. Journal your prayer requests. Journals help us to see prayers are being answered and we will know that we are not abandoned.
  5. Ask the Lord to use you. What can I do for you today?

In Isaiah, we read, “I will never forget you, see, upon the palms of my hands I have engraved you, your walls are ever before me.”

Let’s Pray:

Dear Lord I know I am not abandoned because you tell me over and over in the scriptures that you will never forget, and you have me in the plans of your hands, you hold me up each and every day, you help me through the life burdens that sometimes seem so difficult! I want to praise you and thank you for this and ask you, my Lord, to help me to help others, how can I bring joy in the lives of others? Please, my God, hear my prayers as I pray for the following… I praise you and thank you for hearing my prayers and pray this in Jesus’ Name Amen.

Calm In The Storm

Calm in the Storm |Can we really have calm in the storm of life as our world is thrown upside down? In this episode of A Few Minutes with God the idea of spending time with God has never been stronger.

Calm in the Storm Episode 135

Jesus calmed the sea and when the apostles thought for sure they would surely die. In the midst of the chaos, and the churning waters Jesus appeared to be undisturbed. That was then and this is now, you might say. You might also add — and Jesus was with them, in the flesh and He is not apparent now as he was at that time. Even though the apostles had Jesus there with them, in the same boat they doubted. So, what hope is there for us?

I know I’ve been thrown into upheaval by the events of the last few weeks as a new virus was discovered that was easily transmitted by human contact. All of a sudden the store shelves are emptied and everyone is scurrying to stock up on food because an order to stay at home will be issued soon. This is the first time ever in my life that I’ve been asked to stay at home because of the spreading of a disease. Anyone who hears this, no matter where you live in the world will remember this time in our history. While schools are closed and stores that are non-essential lock their doors we have more time to think.

This self-imposed isolation for many causes us to rethink our lives and all the running we do. I believe the Lord is giving each and every one of us new eyes. New eyes as we read the Bible, new eyes as we think about our lives and new eyes as we think about the frailty of human life.

But we should rejoice. Because our Lord brings us calm in the storm of our lives, in the storm of our indecision, in the storm of our medical issues or those of our loved ones. The Lord helps us and he is there for us. He is steadfast, He is our rock and our refuge. Where else would we go? We echo the words of Peter when he said, “Master, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.” 

Where do we go in the midst of the storm? Where do we hide? Do we hide in the Word of God, in our prayers, in our journal, in our time with God? Our Lord is a Lord of justice, a Lord of order, a Lord of calm. In Deuteronomy 4:29 we read:  “Yet when you seek the Lord, your God, from there, you shall indeed find him if you search after him with all your heart and soul.”

In times of temptation or trouble, we cry out to the Lord and feel abandoned. Those who do not know Him I am sure are in a state of despair. If I didn’t believe in a righteous God I can’t imagine how I would feel! But we who believe say, “There is a God and I chose to believe.” He is here even in the midst of chaos and strife, even in the midst of all that is broken he is the calm in the midst of the storm.

We can choose to say things with bitterness or with faith. I chose faith – I chose time with God. The Psalms remind us over and over that God does hear us. He always hears us. The issue is with us, do we hear him? Are the windows of our life washed clean so that we can hear Him in the Scriptures in the time of prayer? He wants us to help Him to be cooperative with him to be His eyes, His ears, His heart to give people hope to reach those who do not have faith or feel lost.

If we seek the Lord He seeks us – the famous verse in Psalm 23 (read on air).

He shall comfort me – do you hear that? He shall comfort me and comfort you. We can become a new creation in Christ – there will be a new heaven and a new earth – where we will be always rejoicing. Friends I love my life but sometimes I wonder why are we so afraid to die? For those of us who believe in heaven how much rejoicing and happiness will we have when the Lord is ready for us?

We need to turn off the news and pray, contemplate and get filled up! God gave the woman at the well and a new chance at life–she was redeemed, the man born blind received new eyes and Lazarus was raised from the dead. These scriptures apply to our lives each and every day.

Let’s Pray:
Lord, we rejoice in your because you are a God who cares about us, about our every need. You know what is happening in our lives right now and we give you all our cares, we toss them upon the seas and the same way that you calmed the seas when the apostles were so worried and scared about drowning in the boat we ask you to calm our fears. Anoint us with the gift of your Holy Spirit so that we may be renewed once again, that our eyes are open to sin and we can turn away from it that our ears can listen to those things that are pleasing to you, that our minds are made new. I pray specifically for the following needs… and I pray this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Longing For Significance

Longing For Significance | Are you longing for significance while drowning in the daily struggles of the anonymous parenting world? In this episode, Felice Gerwitz and Denise Mira discuss how you are important and have value! Join us for the truth of motherhood, fatherhood, and parenthood. | #podcast #christianpodcast #womenlongingforsignificance #womenandmotherhood #motherhood #placeinworldLonging For Significance – Having an Impact as a Mom ~ Episode 31 with Denise Mira

Are you longing for significance while drowning in the daily struggles of the anonymous parenting world? In this episode, Felice Gerwitz and Denise Mira discuss how you are important and have value! Join us for the truth of motherhood, fatherhood, and parenthood.

Vist out speaker, DeniseMira.com

Handout from Denise: Longing for Significance OMC EP 31

Who am I in the world? Do I have an impact on my family? Or do I have an impact as a mom? How can I find significance when I am drowning in the to-do lists and all that entails daily life. Now add homeschooling to the list and I’m really on overload. Even if you do not homeschool your child, life can be overwhelming at times. A mom’s life is often overlooked or worse taken advantage of by the very people we love so much.

Denise Mira and Felice Gerwitz discuss and address these issues and more. We discuss that we are somebody – in fact someone very important. We discuss the roots of motherhood and how the enemy likes to lie to us in order to cause even more discontent.

  1. Somebody
  2. Perceived value
  3. Modern plumb lines
  4. The glory of man
  5. New Face on an Old Plan
  6. Every Lie Must Be Uprooted with the Truth
  7. The shepherd boy

Be Not Afraid

Be Not Afraid | In the face of this pandemic, we must "be not afraid," and realize that all of this is not a surprise to God. How are we acting? | #podcast #christianpodcast #christian #fear #worryBe Not Afraid ~ Episode 134

In the face of this pandemic, we must “be not afraid,” and realize that all of this is not a surprise to God. How are we acting? If we as Christians are not setting the example then who will? In this episode, Felice shares how God is showing her through the events of this current time that is still in control.

Wow, what the difference a week makes. I had planned for a work-friends retreat for over six months and was set to leave on Monday when I heard the news about an outbreak in the US of the Coronavirus (more information here). One person had died and there were other cases of people who were on cruise ships and in quarantine.

Within a few days, the news was filled with more and more cases, we heard of countries where the virus had taken over it seemed in Italy among other places. I quickly sent a message to cousins who live in Sicily to learn they were healthy yet staying at home to avoid others. By the time I was heading home on Saturday I worried at the wisdom of leaving home in the first place. You can imagine my surprise when I attended church to learn that the doors would remain open but social distancing was recommended and no handshaking. The ushers greeted us at the door wearing plastic gloves.

Watching the news increased my anxiety but then being uninformed is not helpful either. So, what are we to do? The first words that came to mind were “be not afraid.” I looked in the scriptures and found so many!

Scriptures that discuss why we as Christians should not fear!

Genesis 15:1
Deuteronomy 20:3
Isaiah 41:10 
1 Samuel 22:23
In this time of confusion, misinformation, and alarm we must keep our eyes on the Lord. We will never look at our world the same – but the bigger question is, will we ever look at ourselves the same way?
This time is a challenging time for everyone in the world. Not just in my home or yours but the entire world. Is this an accident, is this something that has been known since the beginning of time. I don’t have answers however what I do know is that it is a time for us, as Christian believers to set our sights on the Lord and what is important in our lives. The only precedent we have is a world war – and it has been so many years since that happened that I believe we became complacent as believers.
Today I spoke to a friend of mine who is a Catholic priest and he shared that I should read the scriptures beginning in Isaiah about how the Lord deals with the unfaithful. We need to use this as our guide to repent (we all sin) and to rejoice that we at least have our faith and the Lord. Fr. David shared that he believed this was a judgment of all humankind. Our world has become pagan and I believe now is a time for self-examination. It is a springtime of re-evaluation, not to point fingers out but to point fingers inward, to ourselves. I hope to do a podcast with him soon on the topic of Spiritual imperfection and how, to be honest with ourselves and to look at our weaknesses and repent. He explained it was similar to the 12-step program to get free from addiction and in this case, it is the addiction from sin. So many things we consider not that bad – now is the time to look at those things and wash the window of our souls so that instead of spottiness there is a clean surface that can only happen by the mercy of God.
Let’s pray:
Dear Lord, please send your mercy and provisions for us all – as you said in the scriptures over and over again, “Be not afraid,” or do not fear, do not lose heart. In this time of need, we do not want to despair but we want to take the time to examine ourselves, our souls and our outlook on life, the life we have known and the life we hope to lead in the future one that rejoices in the Lord. Dear Lord, we lift up the following intentions… and we pray this in Jesus, Name. Amen.
Scripture verses that discuss why God says we should not fear!
Genesis 21:17
Genesis 26:24
Genesis 26:24
Genesis 35:17
Genesis 43:23
Genesis 46:3
Genesis 50:19
Exodus 14:13
exodus 20:20
Numbers 12:18
Numbers 21:24
Deuteronomy 7:18
Deuteronomy 20:1
Joshua 10:25
Joshua 11:6
Ruth 3:11
1 Samuel 4:20

Tips For Lent

Five Tips For Lent | Do you take the journey to Easter with seriousness? If so, this episode contains tips for Lent to develop a deeper prayer life and contemplate the meaning of the days leading up to this day of celebration when our Lord and Savior paid the ultimate price for our sins. #podcast #christianpodcast #lent #lentjourney #fivetipsforLent @simplelifelessonsTips For Lent Episode 133

Do you take the journey to Easter with seriousness? If so, this episode contains tips for Lent to develop a deeper prayer life and contemplate the meaning of the days leading up to this day of celebration when our Lord and Savior paid the ultimate price for our sins.

Thanks to Media Angels our sponsor – our sponsorships keep us on the air so be sure to check them out. MediaAngels.com Check out the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child

Show Notes Tips For Lent

Scriptures to Study 

  • Matthew 16: 24-26
  • Matthew 9:35-38

Top Five Tips for Lent

In Matthew 16:26 we read for what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? I’m going to share my top five tips to really think about these 40 days leading up to the time that we celebrate the Resurrection, on Easter!  Do you look at this time with great introspection?

I mean, what else do we ever have the time or luxury to really think about our lives and where we are going? I used to hate plans. I used to hate to have goals. And the reason for this was that I am a pretty competitive person. Mostly against myself. And so I always felt if I can’t win, I’m not even going to participate. And it was a horrible attitude to have, right? That’s why I didn’t like to play games.

I didn’t make goals because I could possibly fail. What a horrible way to live and think. And it wasn’t until I got older and really took a look at why don’t I like doing these certain things or why was I not setting goals, I realized it was a self-defeatist attitude. Lent is one of those times for me, and it is a time to really delve into the scriptures. It is a time to really go into prayer. It is time to really give my life to the Lord in a renewed way. And so I hope it becomes that time for you as well.

Five Tips for Lent:

  1. Prayer and contemplation. You know, it’s taking that few minutes with God. Be quiet before the Lord. Even if you don’t hear anything, open up the Bible and you read the Scriptures, that’s the Word (God) talking to you.
  2. Forgiveness. Making atonement or amending relationships. Unforgiveness can cause us to be held in bondage. A tool the enemy uses is this unjustice. You know, that’s not fair. I can’t believe that person did this to me. Or you know, whatever that is, let go of that guilt. Let go of that unforgiveness. Let go of whatever that is and just pray blessings upon the person that irritates you. P
  3. Say no to whatever “that” is in your life. What is that thing in your life that is again holding you down? You know, it can be a giving up something like a piece of chocolate or dessert or foul language.
  4. Giving, your time, talent and treasures. What are those things, those gifts that you have? For me, time is very, very precious. My time is one of those things that I just hoard. And so during this Lenten journey, during this time of lent, I am going to give my time, talent and treasures. And for me it’s actually going to be teaching a class online. And while it’s a topic I love, just the time it took to put it together was a labor of love to help other people. And so whatever that is, whether it’s visiting family in the nursing home, or just visiting with a neighbor.
  5. Spiritual growth. It is that time to, you know, get into the Word, to read a book that may be sat on yourself shelf for a year.

Let’s Pray.

Dear Lord, help me, help me in my unbelief. We all struggle at times my God really focusing on You and really seeing clearly the path that you have opened for us. And I just ask you my God to shine a light upon our path, to help us with our focus, to give us clarity, to give us a vision, to give us that joy of life that you want for us, that you so abundantly want to give us. And I pray, Lord, that you help me during this journey to focus on the things that you want me to see. I just praise you and I thank you for all things. My God, I asked you to help me to focus and be thankful, and I would like to lift up the following needs and prayers… And, I pray this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

 

 

Praying Moms

Praying Moms | Are you ready to pray effectively? Well, praying Moms are those of us who don't stop even in the face of great odds. Today my special guest Lucia Claborn will share how the Lord totally changed her life from a non-believer to one who loves the Lord and has prayed her way to victory in Christ. | #podcast #christianpodcast #prayingmoms #momswhopray #prayingforourfamilies #prayingthescriptures #JesusanswersprayerPraying Moms ~ Episode 30 with Lucia Claborn

Are you ready to pray effectively? Well, praying Moms are those of us who don’t stop even in the face of great odds. Today my special guest Lucia Claborn will share how the Lord totally changed her life from a non-believer to one who loves the Lord and has prayed her way to victory in Christ.

Lucia Claborn is the host of Secrets To Victorious Living right here on this podcast network!

Visit Lucia’s website for all of her wonderful books on praying the Scriptures, here.

Catch another interview with our sweet friend, Lucia on my Vintage Homeschool Moms show, Secrets to VictoriousFaith in Families

Lucia served in the military for 21 years and she was single and then got married after 11 years of service and had three children in three years, each eighteen months apart, and she thought she was done and didn’t think she could handle any more. She had returned from Virginia to Alabama and was doing the dishes, looking out of her window, having a conversation with God, She was asking God for specific things to change in her life and His answer was that would happen with another child to which Lucia was not open.

In her mind, she had all kinds of reasons why she couldn’t take care of another child.  Then she heard the Holy Ghost say, “Well, you know, you can do it your way or you can do it my way.” And she knew then that she was going to have another child. She agreed that her way had not worked for more than thirty years.

Her daughter Katie was born nine months later and is such a blessing to their family. Life wouldn’t be the same without this addition to their family and Lucia realized was truly a miracle in her life. She learned a better way to pray which she will share on this episode.

  1. Many times we start confessing the problem that we have, it may be, I don’t have enough money to make it through the week. My child is sick, Lord, you know, you’ve got to him heal him, etc. These prayers do not show faith.
  2. Many times we say, Father if it will be your will, you could do this. We know God’s will is and pray God’s will.
  3. Is your focus on healing? Lucia began to focus on prayers for healing: 1 Peter: 24
  4. We thank God ahead of time for the healing.
  5. Lucia and her family began to quote all the blessings daily. She prays these blessings for health for wholeness, for the Lord to take care of every one of their needs.

Lucia shared how the Lord provided even without insurance, how the Lord provided for food when they needed this, how the Lord provided for their home and more. When she began homeschooling the Lord provided the needed money for curriculum. She wants to encourage all of you to thank God for all things. Visit Lucia at LuciaClaborn.com

 

Lent Begins

Lent Begins | Lent begins and it is a journey, the forty days before Easter. It is a time of prayer and reflection and it can be life-changing if we take the time to spend some time in quiet with God. Are you ready for the best Lent ever?  | #podcast #christianpodcast #lent #40days #lentenjourney #christianfaith #catholicfaith Lent Begins – A Prayer Journey – Episode 132

Lent begins and it is a journey, the forty days before Easter. It is a time of prayer and reflection and it can be life-changing if we take the time to spend some time in quiet with God. Are you ready for the best Lent ever?

Thanks to Media Angels our sponsor – our sponsorships keep us on the air so be sure to check them out. MediaAngels.com Check out the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child

Mark 8:36 What profit is there for one to gain the whole world and forfeit his life?

Do we consider this as we live our daily lives? What is in it for me is how most people think about their journey and they are surprised when their relationships fall apart especially their relationship with Almighty God. I believe that Lent – whenever that is for you – is a time that God gives us these forty-days to do some serious soul searching and introspection. What are we about – what is this thing called life – do we want eternal happiness with God in heaven or do we want death and damnation Those are real choices and we have the free will to make them.

Have you heard the saying – to live in joy is to die to self. This is a truth – when we chose -whatever that choice is we live our lives freely and that choice becomes the way we live our life. Let me ask you what you would think about someone who is very wealthy but got that way because he cheated poor people out of their money? You probably would not think very highly of that person. Right?

Some things – some truths are black and white – very clear but others are not.

Our pastor shared this quote, “He is no fool who gives up what He cannot keep gaining what He cannot lose.” Think about that.

Our lives are temporary but how we live our lives is what the journey is all about. The Lenten journey is a forty-day journey of victory that started with our Lord Jesus Christ in the desert. He was tempted by Satan who used the Scriptures against Him and Jesus answered back with the Scriptures. Jesus lived, died and rose again in a victory that has saved those who believe.

In the history of the Bible, we see Moses and the people of Israel wandering in the desert and never seeing the promised Land because they continued to give in to the temptation and sin.

Adam and Eve when tempted fell into the lies of the evil one and sinned.

You think that was then but this is now? Friends – the sins of the past are universal.

Sins such as pleasure, power, and prestige are ones that can be used to destroy those around them. How about futility – disparity – hopelessness – why bother because of nothing matters?

What about pessimism or shortcuts – attaining things fast while cheating others ?? Procrastination, unforgiveness, putting things off –

We all sin. It is a human fact but the wonderful thing about this time of prayer is that we can turn things around for the better and while we can try to do it alone we have our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who comes alongside us and says, I am here always until the end of time!

The true translation of the Lord’s prayer – where it says, Lead us not into temptation

In Greek the translation is: Lead us so we do not fall. Lead us, Lord, away from sin – lead us Lord far from temptation.

The temptation is a suggestion that someone disobeys and commits sin – why does God allow it – because we have free will we are not puppets of the Almighty – he gave us the ability to chose.  It is to the temptation that is the sin it is what we do with this temptation and how we act upon it. God gives us the grace to overcome and Jesus gave us this example in the Scriptures – he experienced temptation and remained obedient to the Father.

Praise you and thank you God the Father in heaven that you have set us free – that you lived, died and rose again so that we could have eternal life. I thank. You for this time of Lent this time to pray and discern what we should give up in our lives – to be aware of the temptations in our lives – the sin of unforgiveness, the sin of hopelessness, the sin of pessimism or despair. Dear Jesus forgive me of my sins especially these I now pray about… dear Jesus I lift up and pray for the following… And I pray this in Jesus Name, Amen!

 

Depend on God

Depend on God | They will know us by our love and by our fruit, but if we do not depend on God how will we show others the love of Christ? Are you ready to step out of your comfort zone and depend on the Almighty? | #podcast #christianpodcast #dependingonGod #dependonGodDepend On God ~ Episode 131

They will know us by our love and by our fruit, but if we do not depend on God how will we show others the love of Christ? Are you ready to step out of your comfort zone and depend on the Almighty?

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child

The last podcast was on trust in God and how we often say we trust Him but then we take it back and we stress and deal with things in a way that is harmful to us. We let go and let God and then let the world crash down upon us with a to-do list that is longer than the longest highway. Those lists and those thoughts can keep us up at night and keep us in bondage. Today I want to share some ways to overcome this and truly depend on God.

When I think of those with great faith I think of the martyrs of the past or those who died or were persecuted for their belief in God. They cared so much that they would rather die than deny God. This is the opposite of what we see today and in our world, so many times all we want to do is focus on the negative or overreact to every little thing so that it gets blown out of proportion. how did we get in this state of anger or division?

I believe much of it has to do with taking our eyes off of God. If we are Jesus to our brothers and sisters, as you can imagine the world we live in would look so much different and obviously so much better. We could be joyful and help as the Lord would have us help. Instead, we put our heads down, try to avoid conflict and live our lives in isolation with walls and yards dividing us from our fellow man. Is that what God wants of us? I doubt that very much.

If we are honest our dependency is on ourselves and our abilities. Why ask God when we are capable? We discussed this in the last episode. When I talk bout depending on God I’m focusing on the outcome and the joy that belief and faith bring into the soul. How can you be in a state of joy when you are worried about all of the gloom and doom that people are shouting about on national television. Even the local news is enough to cause us to retreat. That is why a focus and dependency on God is important.

Do you depend on God to:

  1. Provide for your needs?
    1. Mathew 6:21
    2. Romans 8:28
  2. Answer our prayers?
    1. Our way or God’s way?
    2. Isaiah 55:8-9
  3. Take away your worry?
    1. Proverbs 20
    2. Proverbs 20:24-26
  4. Provide for the hope of everlasting life
    1. John 6:38-40
    2. Romans 8: 1-2:

Hope everlasting life:

What is the hope? The hope is ultimately everlasting life but the dream is a life well lead, one without regrets because in Christ there is no condemnation when you repent and ask for forgiveness!

 

Let’s Pray!

Dear Jesus, we love you and we know that when we depend on You my God you make crooked lines straight, you take our hand and are truly our Father. You lead us as any good father would do and protect us from what really could happen. You help us out of confusion and we praise you and thank you ahead of time for clarity of mind and the joy in our souls. I pray in the Name of Jesus for the following people and needs including my own… Thank you for hearing me and offering me the truth, the hope and the joy that is in You, Jesus. Amen.

Penance

Why should we do sacrifice and penance? In this episode, we look at the ways we can sacrifice and how the Lord uses this in our lives to bring us closer to Him in our faith and spiritual growth. | #podcast #christianpodcast #penance #sacrifice Why Do Penance? with Father David Tickerhoof ~ Episode 21

Why should we do sacrifice and penance? In this episode, we look at the ways we can sacrifice and how the Lord uses this in our lives to bring us closer to Him in our faith and spiritual growth.

Micky Cohen was a mob leader on the west coast. Several of his henchmen went to a Billy Graham revival, and they made a major conversion and accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. Micky was very interested in being a Christian and had several meetings with Billy. However, in the end, he did not convert. When his henchman questioned him about this resistance, he responded “ What is wrong with being a Christian gangster? He was not able to see that unrepented sin was a major obstacle to being a Christian.

Father David is the author – Evangelizing Catholic Culture: New Vision for The New Creation available here.

On Pentecost when many people heard all the noise and commotion down at the Upper Room, they came and saw all the signs and wonders, and they wanted to receive these gifts? They asked the disciples what should we do? Peter answered: “repent and be baptized, every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts: 2:38).

The gift of forgiveness is a powerful grace freely given, and it consists of a wonderful experience of grace, which brings the goodness of the Father’s mercy and the transforming life of God into our minds and hearts. When we put faith in the Cross of Jesus Christ we receive the gift of salvation. However, this is not the end of the story of the goodness of Divine love and mercy. We are also expected to respond to this gift, by our cooperation and participation in the sacrificial love of Jesus to the Father. We do this by doing penance for our sins and expressing gratitude in a love offering for all that God has done for us. Jesus did indeed die for all; therefore all have died. “He indeed died for all, so that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised” (2 Cor. 15). “So whoever is in Christ is a new creation: the old things have passed away. Behold, new things have come…be reconciled to God.” (2Cor. 17-20)

Generally speaking, all are called to do penance in their individual Christian life, but some people are called by Jesus to do more. Therefore, some are called to live a complete life-style as a penitent. The call and life of servants of mercy,  missionary disciples of mercy, who receive the grace and its transforming power from the blood and water flowing from the pierced heart of Christ; the pierced heart of the Crucified One. The Father’s gift of mercy reveal’s his love and riches in the glory of his Son. This transforming gift of Crucified Mercy enables one to surrender himself in a process and journey of evangelical (Gospel) conversion for reconciliation and sanctification. These graces generate an experience of Spirit-filled and life-giving repentance, which enables one to enjoy a deep sense of gratitude, glory, and praise while embracing the Gospel mission of the Church, and leading others into the glorious life of the Kingdom as mercy-filled penitents.

Trust In God

Trust In God | Of course, you trust in God, right? But do you really? In this episode, we will take a hard look at our lives and shine a light on all the times we thought we were trusting when we really holding back! \ #podcast #christianpodcasat #trustinGod #christian #trustinginGodTrust In God ~ Episode 130

Of course, you trust in God, right? But do you really? In this episode, we will take a hard look at our lives and shine a light on all the times we thought we were trusting when we really holding back!

Thanks to our sponsor …

Our lives are like a tapestry that begins with a simple thread but is woven into something beautiful, if we allow the Lord entry and to work in our lives. I don’t think that any Christian would argue that the Lord is all-powerful, all-knowing and always just. But even so, even if we know the Lord of the Universe the Creator God has our best interests in mind – we fail to trust.

This podcast is mostly for me, and maybe this applies to your life as well – so here is the challenge. When it comes to our most personal thoughts, prayers, wishes and desires do we really trust the Lord? This year as I prayed (at the beginning of the year) I asked the Lord for a word – one word that I could think about and pray about and for me that word was trust. I write the word in my journal I even purchased a coffee mug with the word “TRUST” on the side that I use to drink coffee out of daily. But still, I find myself slipping into old behaviors and thoughts and yes – unfailingly forgetting to trust!

I get worried, I’m impatient when I pray and don’t feel that God has answered me. I worry about my children, our finances and things that are upcoming in my business. I worry about the weather, the time it will take to get to the store or if I have time to do the things I want to accomplish each day. Worry is a form of taking trust out of His hands and putting them back in our own. We trust that we are capable but we also stress that capability. Am I making sense? We trust in ourselves more than we trust in God.

You may ask, “Why should I trust in the Lord? Didn’t God give us the ability to make decisions, what about free will? Shouldn’t we stand on our own two feet and stop bothering the Almighty?”

Is this what you think?

Let me ask, does it bother you when someone you love asks you for a favor or wants to hear your opinion about an important matter? Or how about this, when a loved one fails to ask you for help and then disaster happens! Do you feel annoyed when you have a wonderful solution to a problem but no one bothered to ask you?

Think about the Lord. He created us. He knew us before we were born. Do you think he cares about us and wants us to ask Him and ultimately trust that His providence, His will, and His wisdom is for our good? He does care about us and our eternal souls! So why don’t we trust?

Jeremiah 17:7-8

Blessed are those who trust in the Lord; the Lord will be their trust. They are like a tree planted beside the waters that stretches out its roots to the stream: It does not fear heat when it comes, its leaves stay green; In the year of drought it shows no distress, but still produces fruit.

What is the fruit of you life? Are we upset and tired and do we feel defeated? Or are we excited to spring out of bed each day because we can’t wait to see what joys and excitement is going to happen! That’s the dream, right? Well, it can be a reality in our lives.

Friends, I know that things are going to happen and not go the way we hoped or dreamed. But you know what is probably for the better. Trust. I recently made plane reservations and when I looked at them I realized instead of arriving at 10 am the flight was arriving at 10 pm. Well, I had to buy a new plane ticket and I was upset, but I just trusted that God had a plan. Can you imagine how I felt when that 10 pm flight was canceled? Was I happy I had spent the extra money on rearranging that flight? Yes! Trust.

Philippians 4:7 talks about the peace we should have when we trust, “Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”

 

Renew Your Mind

Renew Your Mind ~ Episode 129

It’s time to renew your mind with a mini-retreat! Every once in a while we need to be filled up to overflowing so we can be a joyful Christian and others can look at us and say, “I want what they have!” Are you joyful? No? Well, in this episode I’ll share some ways to change for the better!

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child

I was listening to an inspirational speaker who grew her business way beyond her imagination. She was able to help to provide for her family after her husband was ill and then became disabled. One of the things that resonated was when she shared that she would time everything in her life even her prayer time, and when she gave God her time she would constantly look at her watch. She realized this was not what she should be doing and when she gave her time to God her prayer life grew.

Stress is a huge factor in our lives. Those who get to a breaking point or are overwhelmed are often the same ones who do not take the time with the Lord. This is a reminder for myself as well as for you! IF we take the time with God another blessing comes. The Lord is asking us to slow down and spend more time with him! We will recover and receive Divine Strength and who doesn’t want that!

Renewing your mind is so important and if you listened to my last episode on the Ten Lies of Satan you will find that we get worn down by the lies of the enemy when we do not know what our Christian faith means. I can’t tell you how God works because our Almighty Father, the creator of heaven and earth is a mystery the more I learn the more I want to learn. But I can tell you this. God does not create junk and the enemy would like you to think that you are not worthy, or too sinful, or not good enough, or you need to be perfect, or you can’t trust or forgive, and on an on. But no, God loves you, baggage and all and He wants to fill you up with his love, peace, joy and grace!

Renew Your Mind

  1. Find a place that is quiet and you can relax and pray.
  2. Be ready. Don’t try this when you have laundry to do or something else pressing.
  3. Brew your favorite drink or grab a glass of water. You don’t want to give yourself excuses to get up!
  4. Play background music quietly if helps. No words just instrumentals. You can also use sounds of nature if those help you to relax.
  5. Set aside at least fifteen minutes or more. Don’t wear a watch!

Mini-Mind Renewal Retreat:

  1. Start with a prayer welcoming God. Thank you, Lord for every good thing. I want to give you this time my God to worship you, and to thank you. Please fill me with the joy that surpasses all understanding and fill me to overflowing. Again – in your own words.
  2. Praise and worship. Either use music or pray a litany such as I praise you, Lord, you are the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning, and the end, You are the Almighty King of Kings the Lord of Lords. Just praise God. If you have difficulty you can find something online or in a prayer book or your favorite song. This is important to come into God’s presence.
  3. Read the Holy Bible. Slowly and savor each word. It can be a short passage to begin with.
  4. Write in a journal or just let the words wash over you. Does anything resonate?
  5. Meditate on these thoughts and add some of your own:
    1. What I am is God’s gift to me and what I become is my gift to God!
    2. God’s Word is an everlasting rock.
    3. God’s will is always accomplished.
    4. Salvation is dependent on knowing the truth and acting on this knowledge.
    5. Make a friend of Jesus, be a friend of Jesus, make a friend yourself and introduce your new friend to Jesus!
    6. Picture Jesus calming the sea and you are in the boat with Him. What does he say? What do you learn?
    7. The invisible God becomes visible when we spend time with Him.
    8. What I am is God’s gift to me and what I become is my gift back to God.
    9. Everything good thing comes from God.
    10. God is good all the time. More of God and less of me!

Let’s pray:

Dear Lord first give me the time to spend time with you. I want to do this every day but I especially want to do this in a retreat with you. I thank you Lord for every good thing that you have given me! I ask you Lord for the grace to be aware of the sin in my life and to avoid it. I pray my God that I put you first above everything else and I choose you! Dear Lord, I ask for the following prayer intentions:

I praise you and I thank you ahead of time for all answered prayer. And I pray this in the Name of Jesus, Amen!

Lies We Believe

10 Lies We Believe | We all do it we believe lies. There are ten lies we believe! The worse thing? The lies we believe are by definition not true! | #lies #podcast #ChristianPodcastTen Lies We Believe ~ Episode 128

We all do it we believe lies. There are ten lies we believe! The worse thing? The lies we believe are by definition not true! We give the enemy credit when all the credit should go to Almighty God! In this episode, we explore the most common lies and ways to combat them.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child

Why do we believe lies? Because many of us are wounded in some way or like to think of ourselves as broken. We are shaped by so many of life’s events. Sometimes it is our own sins, the sins of others, the death of a loved one, or a tragedy within a family. These things shape us and how we consider the future choices we make. God predestines no one to hell! God is the creator, he is love, truth, goodness, beauty. When we see those things in our world they originate from God. Sin is the refusal to live in the beauty that is God. God’s mercy allows us to choose. God never forces His love upon us, he respects human dignity and our free will.

Think about this. Hell is a testimony to God’s respect to our freedom. Love redeemed us and won heaven for us. God will not violate our capacity for choice. So if we want to believe the lies of the enemy we have freedom to do this. The only thing we can give ourselves credit for is sin – every good thing comes from God!

Remember the song, “…and they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love. Yes, they’ll know we are Christians by our love…” I use to think that it was an injustice that I was not showing others God’s love because I did not feel His love myself. I was under a false impression. I believed the lies of the enemy. In my steps as a Christian, I had learned about God’s unconditional love – meaning we don’t need to work at it or earn it, yet I believed that God’s punishments were very real and the thought was depressing. Lies these are all lies. It took me years to undo and become free from these lies! And, friends, this freedom is amazing and I pray this for all of you listening today as well.

Jesus spoke about Satan in the Holy Bible, he said the enemy is the “Father of lies.”

John 8:44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.

John 8:45-47 Jesus continues… “Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me! Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don’t you believe me? 47 Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.”

If we can not hear what God says in the Word, from our pastors and from our prayers, the bigger question is, “Who DO you belong to?”  The first step in combatting the lies of the enemy is to recognize them. Evil is frightening and how do we respond to evil? First by recognizing it! We often credit the evil one with the things that belong to God. At the root of evil is pride – the root of all sin.

Top Ten Lies of Satan

  1. Satan is a myth. Does Satan really exist? The enemy likes people to believe he does not exist – God is a myth and all of this “penance” or “fasting” or “being good” or “faith” is a tall tale. My question is to people who do not believe in God, “If you believe in God and there is no heaven, you are assured a life where good is called good and evil is called evil. There is no confusion. But if you do not believe in God, and you follow the ways of the enemy (because of course, you are following Him – he has already duped you in believing he does not exist) and then you die and learn there is God. What is the alternative? A life in eternal damnation because a person who denies God and lives a life without God in it will turn their back on God eternally. Our pastor calls it the fundamental option.) I feel sorry for those who do not believe because they are missing an amazing joy! The joy of the love of a benefactor, a Father who loves us not matter what! We have the choice of obedient love or self-seeking which often leads to destruction. What I am is God’s gift to me and what I become is my gift to God!
  2. Not good enough – false pride- You are sinful and therefore not good enough to follow God. God made us on the sixth day of creation and He said it was “very good” therefore, God made us good. I know there are plenty of people out there that will argue with this statement. So, let’s look at Genesis 1:26-31

    26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals,[a] and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. 30 And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.” And it was so. 31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day.                                                                 So the question I have for you to think and pray about is this, if God made us good why do we think we are destined for evil, yes we adopted a “sin nature” as the term goes from Adam and Eve but that is why Jesus came! To take on our sins. Think about it.

  3. You must be perfect to be a Christian, and if you are not you fall short. First, there is no perfection outside of heaven but that does not mean we do not try. Secondly, we can not be perfect again this doesn’t mean we are lazy Christians but we don’t become holy by the way we dress or act toward others. Instead, the way we dress or act is an extension of our love of God and His goodness within us. It is a flow-through not a doing it on our own strength.
  4. Doubt — don’t believe what God says. Satan wants us not to believe what God says. Read Genesis 3:1-4

Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”

The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”

“You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

We must believe that when God says it, He means it. And do not believe or doubt God!

5. God Punishes You –– If you are a Christian nothing bad can happen to you. (So when bad things happen to good people, obviously God let you down or there is no God. God punishes you for your sin. Sin does have a consequence and a recourse but we must believe that God is good all the time and all the time, God is good!

6. Guilt, Envy, Infidelity – The evil one will tell you that these things are not bad but they are serious. Guilt can eat us up and make us focus on the problem or the issue rather than the solution. Envy is another one of those sins that takes our eyes off of God. Infidelity – well, enough said. Sins may start small but then it snowballs, and as you’ve heard there is no small sin.

7. You can’t trust God you have to do things yourself.  This is such a lie, we can trust God and we can ask God for help. You know you are believing this lie if you do not ask the Lord for help throughout the day!  Do you say, “I need your help Lord. How do I do this? or How can I carry on?” Or is it that I must take charge and take care of the issue without God’s help? God gives us the ability to handle things but a little prayer can go a long way to finding a solution.

8. Small Sins are not bad. Everyone sins – and your sins are just not that bad compared to everyone else. This is a truth I have heard people say! We are living a life after the fall is a battle. It is good against evil. Good is the promise of everlasting life and evil is the promise of a wonderful life on this earth without any thought of an afterlife.

9. God can never forgive you for your past sins, so why try. Your past does not define you. We are stuck in the past or worried about the future but miss that God is here now. And today? He gives us grace for today! Not for yesterday, or for tomorrow. This can cripple you and make you depressed. You may feel that God has punished you in some way due to past sins. You are a child of God! God lived, died and rose again to give us eternal life. He shouldered that pain and burden when He carried the cross. By His stripes, we are healed. Christ died for you and for me and now lives to give us abundant life! Ask for forgiveness, if you can go to your pastor – if you are Catholic go to confession and let it go!

10. Judgmental – We see the sins and failings of others and use that as an excuse to say that all Christians are hypocrites. Of course, some are and ruin it for the rest of us, but the majority of Christians that want to love and serve the Lord are too busy with their own lives to worry about the lives of others. This goes for our adult children. We can pray for them but must allow them to make their own mistakes. Intervention time is when they live under your roof! Christians do not put each other down or point out each others sins – not unless someone asks you! Committed Christians also give don’t flaunt their “holiness” in fact you will know someone is a good Christian if they don’t believe they can ever outgive God and they give God all the glory!

So how do you combat the lies?

  1. Pray. Keep your eyes focused on God. The #1 Satan buster is prayer. Even if it is just, “Jesus.” or “Jesus help me!” God hears us.
  2. Arm yourself with the power of Scripture – pray this verse daily! Ephesians 6:10-12 – I love Ephesians 6:10-12 10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
  3. Surround yourself with like-minded Christians. This is so important!
  4. Go to church. I go to Mass each day as much as I can. By the time I get home, and I feel joyful!
  5. Listen to praise and worship music. It is difficult to believe the lies of the enemy when we are infused in a joyful atmosphere.

Friends, every day we have a choice. We can be obedient and love the Lord with our whole hearts and ignore those lies or be self seeking which leads to death! Often we chose the world over God! God wishes that we do not rest upon anything other than the infinite goodness of God!

Let’s pray:

Dear Heavenly Father, our Lord Jesus, and the Holy Spirit please hear our plea to help us to combat the lies of the enemy who is fighting for our soul. We know you have won the battle by your life, death, and resurrection. You are so much greater than the forces of darkness. You are the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end, the Name above all Names and we claim the healing power of You God in our lives. We ask that you help us to combat those lies that we hear in our minds and instead give us words to praise and worship you. I pray for those that are in need of your healing and I lift up the following prayer intentions … and I pray this in Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Caring and Compassion

Caring and Compassion | Some people are just natural at caring and compassion and nurturing or so you would think - we have this innate desire to be loved and to love. But sometimes we are so focused on ourselves that we miss those who are in need. #podcast #christianpodcast #ChristianMinistryCaring and Compassion ~ Episode 127

Some people are just natural at caring and compassion and nurturing or so you would think – we have this innate desire to be loved and to love. But sometimes we are so focused on ourselves that we miss those who are in need.
I remember going to the nursing home – not assisted care, full-care nursing homes where people look lifelessly out at nothing, sit in wheelchairs and are basically in God’s waiting room ready to be called. They have lived for many years and appear to sit there forgotten.
One time we walked by a little lady sitting in her chair, with her daughter next to her painting her fingernails bright red and chatting away. By the time we came back the poor, little lady was distraught. She asked us if we had seen her daughter. She said, “She is here one minute and gone the next!” I’m sure her daughter was painting her nails something she must have enjoyed for years and then, wished her mom good-bye until the next time. But in her age this lady forgot.
Do we forget those who are less fortunate or those who are lonely? Is it our neighbor or someone we know at church? It’s easier to have compassion for someone in our own families or our immediate friends and more difficult for those we did not know.
Jesus is a perfect example of love and compassion.
So what is compassion?
  1. Part of this is realizing each other’s needs for love and attention and fulfilling these.
  2. Having respect for others.
  3. Listening when others speak
  4. Empathizing with someone’s struggles
  5. Being willing to spend time with those in need.
Being compassionate often means self-sacrifice something that does not come easily for us. Sacrificing our time or something we want to do for someone else. In this case, our human instinct is to be annoyed or upset that we “have” to do this for someone else, and this often negates our ability to give selflessly. A decision to do something requires effort and action.
There are many rewards of being loving and compassionate especially if this does not come naturally to you or requires efforts. Some of the rewards are tangible and others are intangible. The tangible rewards would be approval or favor from those who observe your unselfish action or becoming friends with someone or developing a deeper friendship as a result of your efforts.
The ones we can’t see are those in heaven, those gifts that are waiting for our heavenly reward. You can never outgive the Lord – he is the one of abundance and blessing in our lives and one that we can count on to fulfill every place in our hearts that are hurting or empty.
A relationship with the Lord takes time, effort and listening something we discuss often in the podcast. Spending time with God in order to be infilled with his love and to listen to direction, which can be a feeling or a thought or even a Bible verse. We can pray and meditate on these and learn.
We live in a hurting world and this side of heaven is not always a happy place. We eat and exercise in a healthy way which often prolongs use our bodies but not necessarily helps our mind. It is the food of heaven, the acting on the gifts that God has given us like love and compassion that can bring joy to others in as a result of satisfaction in our lives.
Let’s Pray:
Dear Jesus, I praise you and I thank you fo fall the gifts and blessings you have given me in my life. I ask that you increase my love for others and my compassion. Bring me incidents where I can serve you and those around me. Help me to see the good in others and to seek to bring comfort to those who are in need or hurting. I ask for the needs of those I am praying for, Lord please grant these prayers and petitions … I pray this in Jesus, precious, Name. Amen.

Miracles Happen

Miracles Happen | We read about miracles in the Scriptures but do miracles happen today. Yes, miracles do happen! In this episode, we discuss the miraculous from the Bible but we look at the miracles all around you that defy explanation. | #podcast #christianpodcast #miraclesMiracles Do Happen – 126

We read about miracles in the Scriptures but do miracles happen today. Yes, miracles do happen! In this episode, we discuss the miraculous from the Bible but we look at the miracles all around you that defy explanation.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child

Some time ago I read a book, Miracles Do Happen by an Irish nun, Sister Breige McKenna and her story was riveting. She was very ill and suffered from rheumatoid arthritis that was so crippling that she had difficulty walking. She was sent to from Ireland to her community, the Sisters of St. Clare in Tampa, Florida with the hope that the warm Florida weather would help her. She was miraculously and instantly healed during the celebration of the Eucharist at Church. This was in 1970 and she was twenty-four. Later she received, in prayer, the gift of healing for which she is known. If you read her testimony you will learn that she was reluctant to receive this gift. I was blessed to work with a team of people to bring a book that contains her testimony in it to print, and I laughed when I read how this humble nun had to be told over and over by different people that they felt that God wanted to give her the gift of healing. One was a gentleman who was a protestant and said something to the effect that I don’t typically talk to Catholic nuns, but God keeps giving me this message to give me and won’t leave me alone until I give it to you! She realized then that she was being called. She has traveled the world bringing the hungry the word of God. She brings the focus to Jesus. I’ve met her several times and she has a riveting sense of humor. She spends at least three hours a day in prayer. I’ve been to prayer services that she has lead and it is truly a spiritual awakening.

When God uses us he often uses those who are humble and think they are the least of the ones that should be called. This humility can sometimes be a stumbling block. It can be false humility – yes that is a thing. When I learned about all of the gifts of the Holy Spirit I learned that these were to uplift the community and show the grace of God to the flock.

Miracles happen every day and we don’t see them because we are busy with life. Just waking up each day is a miracle. One more day, Lord – thank-you!

We don’t expect miracles but they are available for us. Maybe you’ve prayed for God to heal you or someone you love and the answer was no. That doesn’t mean that miracles don’t happen. They do. Everyday.

The first miracle we read about in scripture is when Jesus turned the water to wine at the wedding feast of Cana. The guests were amazed that the wine was better then what they drank at the beginning of the celebration, and usually, the wine that wasn’t as good was served later. We saw Jesus heal the blind, multiply the loaves and fishes, heal of the ten lepers, cast out demons and even bring Lazarus back to life. So, why do we limit the miracles to the time of Christ?

When Jesus rose He commanded us to go forth and make disciples of all nations – “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. ‘ Amen.” Matthew 28:18-20.

We are commanded to follow in the steps of our Lord and Savior. At Pentecost, he left us with the gifts of the Holy Spirit. (An aside, Sister Breige was born on Pentecost Sunday in 1946)

In the Book of Isaiah 11:2-3, the Gifts of the Holy Spirit are listed and they are considered the gifts that Jesus had and used. How do you receive these gifts? As a Christian, you can kneel beside your bed and pray for them! For me, as a Catholic we receive these gifts in the sacrament of Confirmation, we were told as teens we were becoming soldiers of Christ. This was our chance as a teenager to make our profession of faith, accepting Jesus as our Savior and following him.

The gifts are available to us – but why don’t we use them? Maybe because we fear what might happen. The gifts are wisdom, understanding, knowledge, counsel, fortitude, piety and fear of the Lord.

Friends, miracles do happen and it is time we are available to be used by God. The harvest is plenty but the workers are few applies to us today. Are you available to help the Lord? Sometimes it is just planting seeds, we don’t need to reap, God does that.

 

 

Prayer Partner

Prayer Partner | One of the biggest blessings that can come in our lives is to have a prayer partner, someone you can go to and pray with for your special needs. In this episode, we will discuss how to use this for the advantage of focused prayer. | #podcast #christianpodcast #prayer Prayer Partners – 125

One of the biggest blessings that can come in our lives is to have a prayer partner, someone you can go to and pray with for your special needs. In this episode, we will discuss how to use this for the advantage of focused prayer.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child

Prayer Partner Defined

So, what is a prayer partner? As you can imagine it is a person you can pray with from time to time or even daily for the needs of those closest to you or for the needs of others. Typically it is one person instead of a group of people. This can be someone you know from church or a friend. It can even be your spouse. This person should be someone who is close to God or who wants to grow closer to God.

Why should you have a prayer partner? It isn’t necessary but it is nice to have someone to lean on and help you through a rough spot. Matthew 18: 19-20: “Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.”

What a wonderful promise! God created us as social beings and he even honors and gives grace to us when we partner in prayers.

A prayer partner is someone who:

  1. Is available to pray via the phone or in person.
  2. Is not a gossip
  3. Is not judgmental
  4. Is someone who can keep a confidence
  5. Is someone who is faithful and follows God

While there are no rules to praying with a prayer partner for me the outline below helps tremendously since it is not a time for visiting with a friend, which can actually come later after prayer. Some people don’t want a spouse as a prayer partner and would rather have a friend. It is whatever you feel comfortable with as well as the other person.

  1. A place that is quiet and you won’t be interrupted.
  2. Reverence, going before the Lord takes a time of praise and worship, praying something like this, “Please Lord help to clear my mind of the busyness of the day and help me to focus on you.” I also begin to pray in the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, the Trinity.
  3. Thank the Lord and praise Him. In worship, we can be in the presence of Almighty God.
  4. Sometimes I pray Matthew 18: 19-20 – and then each person takes a turn in lifting a need or petition. It may be a prayer for someone else or yourself. Let your needs be known. At this point you do not need a bunch of details – God knows. You can ask specific, like for a healing or a general, “Please Lord I pray a blessing on ___ as she graduates please provide a job and help her in her new journey.”
  5. Does something come to mind that might be helpful in this situation or is God leading you to another way to pray – speak it out and ask, “Lord I’m not sure if this is from you but please provide…” Or you might feel the Lord is prompting you to pray a specific way.
  6. End with thanksgiving and praise once again.

This is a thumbnail or a brief outline and you can pray in any way you want to – sometimes there is not time to go through each stage and it might be a quick text to your prayer partner asking for a specific prayer request. Many of us are on prayer chains where we get requests from people in need and many times we get so many emails we are unable to pray for each and every one. We pray a generalized prayer for those needs daily – and that makes having a specific person to pray with so important.

Your prayer life will grow as well. And, your prayer partner may change over time. I’ve had various prayer partners over the years and some close friends that I can text for prayers. I have a Facebook Page, A Few Minutes with God with the intent of those in need of prayers. I get notifications and pray!

Prayer, in general, keeps us grounded and it gives us the hope that is in Christ to overcome the evils of this world. Let’s pray!

Dear Lord Jesus, I thank you for reminding us that where two or more are gathered in your Name, you are here in our midst. I praise you and thank you for being here always for us. Thank you for providing for our needs and helping me to grow in my love for you. I see that through prayer I feel closer to you and I thank you for this. I also ask specifically for the following needs: Thank you, my God, for your provision for your Divine Will and for the grace you give me each and every day. And I pray this in Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

 

 

 

Faith Walk Commitment

Faith Walk | Are you ready to make this the best year with a faith walk commitment? We have choices to make and this New Year is a clean slate! We can select our faith walk as one where we get closer to God, walk with purpose and have a goal of hope in mind! | #podcast #christianpodcastFaith Walk Commitment – 124

Are you ready to make this the best year with a faith walk commitment? We have choices to make and this New Year is a clean slate! We can select our faith walk as one where we get closer to God, walk with purpose and have a goal of hope in mind!

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child

In our lives, the choices we make often have repercussions for the good and for the bad. We want to choose what is right but more often doing the least amount is easier. Let’s face it is it easier to turn on the television and veg out rather than pour over the Bible, pray, listen and journal with the hope of making a significant change for the better in your life.

The Christian faith walk brings us to freedom and join. But it does not come, as with any good thing without challenges. There are obstacles in our walk, roadblocks, and detours. We want to go right and yet we turn left, we plan to move up and instead find ourselves down. The more we try the worse things seem. I remember telling my pastor that the more I tried to follow God the harder life seemed to get, and he reminded me of a simple truth. He said the keyword was the “I” the more “I” tried to follow God. Following God is simply a decision, putting one proverbial foot in front of the other. It isn’t what I am doing it is what I am deciding, each and every day. I choose You, God. I choose Your will for my life. I choose to follow You.

Check out this audio on making a new year’s faith journey.

The series of A Few Minutes with God began, as most of you know with the urging that I was doing quite a bit of talking to God but never stopping to listen. I have a ton of words – and I believed the more the better. But as an adult, my faith matured and I began to really seek God not only as a generous and benevolent Father – God, I need this, I need that… preferably now – to wanting more in my life. I wanted more faith, I wanted more focus, I wanted more of God. This translated for me into a much, much happier life which translates into relationships that were happier with my husband, my children, and my friends.

Relationships hinge on a simple truth which most of us miss. And, that is a relationship that is healthy can only we accomplished when we have the love of God in our life. Without God’s love, we can not pour into others. That is one of the reasons that there are so many dysfunctional families in our world today and truthfully depressed Christians.

Our eyes have been removed from the sacred above and focused on the devices in our hands—and all the temptations that come with this. In my lifetime I have seen such phenomenal growth in technology. We used to think that television was distracting and now we carry our televisions and computers in our hands many unrestricted with all types of temptations that lead to sin. These devices are amazing and valuable – in fact, all of you are listening to this podcast on a digital device. Yet, all of this distraction takes our eyes away from God—and sometimes right into the hands of the enemy and ruin relationships.

Relationships take time with God. Relationships take time. They take work. They take listening. They take change. Who has time for this?

But, guess what friends – what if I told you this can be easy. God isn’t complicated we make Him complicated. A faith commitment means saying yes to God – I want more. I want to live a life that is beyond good, beyond great – a life that is amazing and faith-filled. I want to live a life where God knows my needs before I even know them and provides. Easy.

Friends – this can happen and happens to me over and over again. I think it has happened my entire life but I was never tuned into God to see it! God is all around us but we do not have eyes that see!

A faith walk commitment means knowing that you have agreed to learn this year and to be wowed by the miraculous. Think about this. The Divine – Almighty God is the God of miracles. Our lives are a miracle the technology we have is a miracle, the advances in the medical field and so on are miraculous. Not long ago I did a podcast with a friend of mine who is a scientist on DNA and how it was believed that most of our DNA was considered junk (PUT IN LINK) because they didn’t understand it’s purpose. Well, with the advances in science the realization is that most of this DNA is now accounted for – and that is a problem for those who do not believe in God because it is basically impossible to happen out of nothing. I’ve placed the podcast link in the show notes on AFewMinutesWithGodPodcast.com – Faith Walk Commitment or visit CreationSciencePodcast.com for more.

As Christians, we believe in a Divine Creator, we walk in faith and our commitment just deepens the more we learn about God. We are not fearful about what science shows because everything points to a Divine Creator. Our commitment is not to know everything but to be open to learning. Are you ready?

Get out a piece of paper and think about what a faith walk commitment means to you.

Faith Walk Commitment:

  1. Saying yes to walking closer to God.
  2. Less words.
  3. Commitment to learning.
  4. Relationships
  5. Mentoring

My husband and I were asked to help mentor couples that are considering marriage. This is a huge responsibility to us and one we do not take lightly. My first response was, “Sure, after forty years of marriage I can tell you all the things not to do!” But, seriously it is a shame that among Christians the rate of divorce is similar to that for non-believers. Why? Because of relationship. If we get right with God everything, and I mean everything will be easier to handle in our lives. Are you ready? Make a faith walk commitment right now.

Let’s Pray:

Dear Lord Jesus, I pray that you provide for each of us to walk closer to you this year, to make a decision each and every day for more of you Lord, more of you in my life. God, I can not do this alone. I need You. Please help me in my every day, in my decisions, in my choices and expand my time. I ask that you help me to see you in the little miracles of daily life. Dear Lord, I ask for the following prayers … Lord provide for those I pray for and for my special intentions even those I have not asked for – you know my heart, my God. And, I pray this in Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

Trusting God For Your Family Size

Trusting God For Your Family Size | Today I want to talk about trusting God for your family size with our special guest who understands the meaning of heartbreak! Cindy Rushton has a strong Christian faith that has sustained her and shares some very important points with you! | #podcast #christianpodcastTrusting God For Your Family Size Episode 29 with Cindy Rushton

Today I want to talk about trusting God for your family size with our special guest who understands the meaning of heartbreak! Cindy Rushton has a strong Christian faith that has sustained her and shares some very important points with you!

Meet Cindy Rushton on her website and on social media as well as her podcasts on this network. Iron Sharpening Iron and Mom to Mom Radio.

Thanks to our sponsor – A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood 

Prayer is so important – it is a way to change hearts! So many of us want to follow the Lord in every way, except in the area of giving over our fertility. Basically give it to the Lord’s and the Lord’s will. Some of us don’t even realize that God has a will in that area. I mean, it seems obvious when you look back on it that he does, but I remember in particular growing up and my mom she had three children, but she had cancer so she couldn’t have beyond the three, but she would have had as many as the Lord would have given her.

She loved being a mother. And so she imparted that to me. But somewhere along the line it seemed like there was a lot of pressure to have two and be done, you know, after all, we are told were overpopulated. Right. I had my son and then had my daughter and my mindset was I’m done. And I didn’t even ask God what he thought about that. And in fact, sadly my first response to knowing it was a little girl was, well praise God, go ahead and come up to you. I am mortified by the fact that that would come out of my mouth at a time when I’m birthing a precious daughter.

And so you can imagine the heartache whenever I realized that – I didn’t even ask God what he thought. I didn’t know that you could ask God about different areas of your life. Oh my goodness, it is kind of one of the first commands before fruitful and multiply. But I don’t guess, I don’t think I realized that that was for me as well as for Adam and Eve, you know, in the Bible.

At some point, I changed my mind and had a surgery to reverse -for me to get everything back. Wow. You know? And that my story. The rest of the way was a very difficult story. I went through the next few years where I lost at least seven babies that I know of. The first pregnancy was a tubal pregnancy, which was really mortifying to me. And I’ve never really walked through tough things like that. And it was, it was really, it was trying, it was a place of me getting angry at God may get angry. The world was so rude about it. It was kinda like, well, you can have another, you know, I’m like, hello, this was I child, a human being.

Trusting God with your family size takes faith!

  1. God so knows us and he knows every person. He plans and wills to create such a personal way that he knows them and places the opportunities for them to be conceived in the womb. And he knows their days before there’s even one that means he’s involved in that part of it. And whatever that may mean to someone. This means that if you can trust God, you can trust God with your fertility, with your reproduction, with your family size. He, he doesn’t have plans to hurt you, to harm you, to take away your hope and your future and, and ruin your life.
  2. God does will to give you hope, a future to prosper you, to bless you. And to me, the greatest of all blessings and all the things I have had, all the accomplishments I’ve had, my greatest blessings are my children and my grandchildren. The blessing of being able to see my children fulfill their callings in life, to seeing them bless other people.
  3. God does not zap you! I think some of the mentality is — “Oh goodness, I’m pregnant.”  If we are struggling with the pregnancy – well, why are we?
  4. Our culture has sold us awful lies about children and about family. And, and I believe we’re at a season right now where God is wanting to turn the hearts of the fathers and the mothers back towards their homes, towards their children, towards family, towards legacy. And if we can really grasp that, I think that we will, we will really live the life that really matters.
  5. We have a story as Christians that goes beyond the stories of other worldviews and our culture. And, and let me just say this, the enemy, Satan, I’m an unashamed Christian. I believe from the bottom of my heart that the enemy is going to strike out at anything that’s on the heart of God.
  6. There is a battle for the womb and for trusting God. I mean we live in a postmodern post-Christian world. I don’t want to have to say that I always wanted to believe it was Christian, but we are not there anymore. And we have to wake up the younger generation in our culture, they have been trained up with ideas that make them open to a whole lot of things except God. And that makes them open and makes them resistant and even hostile to some of the things like, you know, trusting God with your birth control. You know, and yet I think the church, we have to wake up.

I just finished a class about God’s transformative agent in the world. And it wasn’t exactly the class I thought it was going to be. It was so much more. And one of the things that they were talking about was the state that the culture’s in and it can make you think this is really bad stuff. However, the state we’re in has forced Christians to wake up and to say, okay, wait, we do have answers for this. There is truth, there is identity, there is a purpose that is alive. And that’s some of the battle we are in that will effect future generations.

Now it’s like there’s this fight between right and wrong and darkness and right and, and, and godliness. And there’s just good and evil. You see it so, so out there. I mean all you have to do is turn on faith for a moment the mainstream media.

If people see a happy marriage they want to learn from you. Or if they see children that are just so I’m on fire for God and the family they will want to know more. Sometimes we want to put the blame, for example, I didn’t hear it, a church or I didn’t hear it here or you know, I didn’t grow up hearing that. Well in our family I did grow up hearing that, you know, that kids were a blessing and that, you know, we needed to be open to that. But you know, going to school, going to college, a lot of that changed in my life because you are told about how you need to be empowered as women and stand up for yourself and so forth. You don’t want to get trampled on. But for me the biggest accomplishment of my life, is my marriage and my children.

 

New Year Faith Journey

New Year Faith Journey | As we turn the calendar are you prepared for a New Year Faith Journey? In this episode, we will explore the exciting New Year that God’s got for you, and we look at it with expectant hope. | #podcast #christianpodcastNew Year Faith Journey 123

As we turn the calendar are you prepared for a New Year Faith Journey? In this episode, we will explore the exciting New Year that God’s got for you, and we look at it with expectant hope.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child

The end of a year brings celebration, not because the year ends – well, I guess it depends on the summation of the year you’ve had – no, the celebration is symbolic of the excitement of the year to come. We look at it with excitement and hope for the best. This is how we as a Christian should look at the coming year.

Our Hope is in Christ and the New Year Faith Journey should look something like this:

  1. I can’t wait to see all that God is going to do in my life this year.
  2. I am so excited about how I can serve others this coming year.
  3. I look forward to the new insights and revelations in my studies about God.

The world looks at the future so much differently than a Christian does. Success to a Christian is being in God’s will – it is the joy of waking up each day and saying, “God’s got this!” It is realizing that God’s will is so much better than our will.

The Lord’s prayer reminds us of this –

“…thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”

Free will is God’s will.

What Does A New Year Faith Journey look like to you?

But the new year gives us a blank slate and as we as Christians look at this we can begin to map to look forward to our life as a journey of faith. We can make changes for the better but in order to do this, we must have an examination of our life. Some people think they don’t need to make any changes. They are great! They are living a wonderful life. No changes to be made – nothing to see, move on.

I heard a wonderful sermon recently at Mass where our pastor said, “Sometimes we get comfortable in our sin and we don’t think it is bad – or that bad, in fact sometimes we don’t even recognize it as sin! We go along cloaked in sin, comfortably wrapped!”

Wow – food for thought but he went on.

There are consequences of sin! And know this we should change, right? We want to live a life that is free of guilt or misgivings. A life that is happy and successful in the belief that we are living a righteous life.

God has a perfect will for us but we often spurn God’s will to find our more “perfect will.” We want to do things our way. Our first parents who were created out of nothing by the hand of God and given the perfect place to live turned their backs on God and sinned. Decisions and choices have consequences and our rebellion causes this – not God, but for us. People often blame God for their problems but the real person is us. Sin causes a breakdown in a relationship and the breakdown is between us and our creator. But there is good news!

We can restore our relationship by asking for forgiveness – just as a good parent who punishes a child to ensure that this child does not continue to sin, God’s justice means punishment for sin. Jesus took on our sins on the cross to free us from sin and this is the beginning (asking forgiveness) of our restoration.

As we look at the new year it is like a new beginning~ we look at the answer Jesus gave the scribe when he asked, “What is the greatest commandment?” Jesus said (Matthew 22) – “You shall love the Lord your God with your heart and all your soul and all your mind. This is the greatest and first commandment. And as second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

What hope! What joy! WE can go to the Lord and ask for forgiveness from all the ways we have turned away from Him, for rejecting Him and because of all the bad decisions we have made that caused us to sin and to harm ourselves. Even if we have done so without knowing! Secondly, we can move forward by depending on God’s love and His promises. To be with us always. We don’t have to do it alone. We have an arsenal of tools!

Faith Journey Tools

  1. We have God’s love. The Holy Spirit to guide us, ask Him into your heart (repentance first and a promise to change!)
  2. We have prayer – talking to God. (We do this at the end of each podcast.)
  3. We have quiet before the Lord – listening.
  4. We have the Word of God – in the Bible.
  5. We have the thanksgiving – praising God each day.

So what is it going to be? Will you trust God this year that He has the best in store for you? Will you trust that His will your faith journey be on that least traveled road that leads to heaven or that wide highway to that other place?

Let’s pray for a journey that is protected by Almighty God with an abundance of Grace.

Dear Lord, I thank you first for the gift of faith. Without this gift, I would be nothing. I have no worry about the future because I know that you are with me. I ask for the outpouring of your Holy Spirit and an abundance of grace to carry me through the day. I can’t wait to see what is in store for me this coming year as I grow closer to You, as you reveal your truth to me, as I see your hand in my life. Thank you, my God, for all of this and I ask for the following prayers: God I know you have my needs and my wants in Your precious hands and I thank you for this, and I pray all of this in your Name, Jesus, Amen.

 

 

 

Holy Family Our Family

Holy Family Our Family | What a beautiful example the Holy Family is in our lives and in this episode we will explore the examples of Jesus, Mary and Joseph and how to live lives that are filled with hope! | #podcast #christianpodcastHoly Family Our Family – Episode 122

What a beautiful example the Holy Family is in our lives and in this episode we will explore the examples of Jesus, Mary and Joseph and how to live lives that are filled with hope!

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child

At Christmas time we decorate our houses with scenes of the Nativity. These scenes are familiar and if you are like me, it brings me great joy to see them around my home. I have several that are in different rooms because for me the focus of the holiday surrounds the birth of Jesus. It causes me to consider the holy and the things I hold sacred in a way that is tangible in my life.

The prophet Isaiah foretold the coming of the Messiah: Isaiah 11:1-7

It hit me recently when we read this exact scripture with my family that there was a great parallel between the verses… Justice shall be a band around his waist and faithfulness a belt upon his hips with Ephesians

Exhortations for Spiritual Warfare – Ephesians 6:10-18

1It is at times like this that I wish I was a scripture scholar. I’m not. But what I can tell you is that the parallel really spoke to me – The prophet Isaiah foretold the coming of the Messiah and in the New Testament Christ is the fulfillment of the prophecy and the key to winning over souls out of the hands of the enemy.

The opening of the kingdom – the eternal kingdom and our salvation comes from Christ. And what an example the Holy Family is to us –

Do we consider ourselves in that situation? The Holy Family gives us an example of overcoming hardship for the greater good. Mary and Joseph were scorned in their own town. Why? Because Mary was “with child” before she lived with Joseph. She was betrothed but then went to visit Elizabeth. When she returned, they could see she was pregnant. She explained in her own words that an angel had appeared to her. Can you imagine what her parents thought? Can you imagine being Joseph?

Take time to think about this and apply it to your life. How do you face those hard decisions in your life? Do you do it with faith and help from the Lord or do you do it on your own without thought of God? Look at the lives of the Holy Family. I came up with five things I’ve learned from the life they lived.

What we learn from the Holy Family:

  1. Dying to self. They took upon themselves the hardships of what the yes to God would mean – a huge disruption in what they envisioned for their life.
  2. Ability to persevere – in the face of hardship they forged on having to travel to Bethlehem for the census (God knew this, right? Again it was a fulfillment of prophecy but how difficult for Mary and Joseph.)
  3. Understanding the truth. They believed. They may have questioned, who wouldn’t? But, they believed that God would provide for them, and He did. Even if it wasn’t easy.
  4. Responsibility – can you imagine being in charge of the upbringing of the second person of the Trinity, Jesus? Many of us can barely raise our own children and to have this mind-blowing responsibility put on our shoulders. Wow. Just wow. Friends, think about this!
  5. The faith that we read in the Scriptures that surpasses all understanding. That is the faith I want that I crave. I want to believe without a doubt, I want to follow God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit in every single thing I do in my life.

Can you add to this list, is there something that speaks to your heart as you contemplate this most Holy of Families?

We know the end of the story and we celebrate this story every year. The prophecy was fulfilled with the yes from Mary in response to the request of the angel, archangel Gabriel – it comes again from the yes when Joseph, once he realized through a dream that Mary was telling the truth and indeed carried the Word of God soon to be made flesh that he had a responsibility to care for them both.

It also shows us that faith is a belief in that which is unseen and resonates truth in our hearts. Today we hear the media talk about “individual truth,” – for example, “she spoke the truth as she believes it.” But, truth is not subjective, it does not change, it always is. God gave us the intellect to believe in a truth higher than we could possibly imagine. Yet we think we know better. We twist the truth to meet our expectations of what we want it to say.

There is only one truth, friends. The truth that God came as a babe in humility for me, for you, for all. God is not exclusive. Do we hunger for truth and righteousness? That is truly what God is – He doesn’t lie, He doesn’t make unfulfilled promises. He came, He lived, He died and He rose.

The intelligent always think they know better. God sent his Son to live with a humble carpenter and his poor wife. Jesus wasn’t born to a king. He could have been, right? He is God, He could do whatever He wanted. We are shown that the Kings, the three Kings paid him homage. What an amazing proof that is—even to King Herod who sent out his men to kill all of the firstborn sons. But as we read in Ephesians evil will not triumph.

Friends, death is not the end. Think about this – those holy innocents, those poor souls who were murdered were vindicated once the gates of heaven were opened. They received their glory not on this earth but in the next. We look for our glory here – how many toys can we buy, how many events can we experience, we need this we need that. We do need to enjoy our life, God gave us this beautiful world in which we live, but not to the exclusiveness of all else.

God’s word is everlasting it is our rock. If we trust God and His Word we can be grounded in righteousness. We can use this rock to build our lives.

Even the gifts the Kings brought of gold, frankincense and myrrh are rich in meaning. Gold we are familiar with – it is a valuable commodity even today, frankincense as well is used by many of us as a potent and valuable essential oil – and incense, and a symbol of deity and myrrh was a symbol of death used as an embalming oil.

Again the Scriptures give us so much to think about to meditate on.

As we remember this precious gift, the birth of Christ and his earthly parents, Mary and Joseph let’s purpose to live our lives in a way that includes the Almighty and how much better off we will be!

Let’s Pray:

My God, there is so much to be thankful for even in times of hardship but we have faith the faith that you give us. Please God, during this very wonderful season, increase my faith, that is the gift I ask for to have more of You in my life to bless me with an abundance of Your grace to overflowing so that I can pour out this grace to others. All that is wonderful and righteous is in You my God, and I thank you for the gift of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. Please, Lord, I ask for these special intentions for my family and friends:     I love you my God and I thank you for all the answered prayers and the miracles in my life that come from you and I thank you in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

 

 

True Meaning Of Christmas

True Meaning of Christmas | The commercial aspect of the holidays almost destroys the true meaning of Christmas. In this episode, I want to share an easy way to bring Jesus to the front and center where He belongs! | #podcast #christianpodcast #christmasTrue Meaning of Christmas Episode 121

The commercial aspect of the holidays almost destroys the true meaning of Christmas. In this episode, I want to share an easy way to bring Jesus to the front and center where He belongs!

Thanks to our sponsor to learn more and get today’s show notes to visit AFewMinuteswithGodPodcast.com. And, please share this episode with a friend, that is one of the ways that you can spread the word!

The beautiful decorations and lights are uplifting to our spirits and the idea of gift-giving is symbolic of the gift that God gave to us by the birth of His only Son. Yet when we get distracted by all the symbolism that is a time to recall the true meaning of Christmas.

Here are three very easy ways to keep our focus on Christ.

  1. Take time each day to read John 1
  2. Spend time with God. Just a few minutes each day.
  3. Close your eyes and listen.

If you have a journal take some time and write your thoughts. How do you feel? Are you excited or do you lean more toward depressed?

Christmas can be a time of anticipation and excitement but it also tends to be a time of disappointment and depression. Especially if we dwell on the past or on what could have been. Or if our expectations surround materialist things. We feel that we are not doing enough or perhaps can’t afford the things we want. But that shouldn’t be the focus.

Life happens each and every day and we can look at it as what we have or don’t have or we can look at each day as a blessing from God.

Recently two of my friend’s husbands died suddenly of heart attacks. Both were robust and active. Both full of life.

Only God knows the reason for taking them home. Only He knows the time and place when we too will be called home. I think it is especially difficult during the holidays to lose a loved one, but I also know that the Lord is not surprised by any of it. These families need prayer as well as all the families who are saddened or struggling during this time. It is hard to be joyous when we struggle with loss.

That is why the Scriptures are so inspiring. They speak to that part in us that longs for relationships and what better relationship than with God? I want to read part of John 1. This is one of my all-time favorite Scriptures and it is the one I always read at the beginning of Advent – the days leading up to Christmas.

John 1:

In the beginning, was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him, nothing was made that has been made.

Just stop and think about these first sentences! The Word – which is Scripture is also God! And the Word was there at the beginning. Imagine! This really helps us to understand and put into perspective the mind-blowing aspect – and that is, God and Jesus are one … it is one of those verses that give us a glimpse of the deeper mysteries of faith. It is also one, that for me is so uplifting it gives me joy and it gives me a deep abiding hope.

And it goes on… In him was life and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

True Meaning of Christmas

Jesus is referred to as the light of the world – the fact that God became man was an act of humility! He came as an infant to save us – to give us eternal life by his life, death, and resurrection. We should rejoice because we know the end of the story – the Scripture tells us, “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” – the darkness, the evil in this world is uncovered for what it is when you shine the true light – the goodness of God upon it, we find that we, who are called by name can not turn our backs upon what is right and good.

When we feel down when we feel depressed when we don’t feel we want to get out of bed and face the day we have only to look at the Word of God for our inspiration. Write out the words, “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” What joy those words give us!

Our focus is not on the glitter or the gift-giving, or even the baking – which I love! The focus is on Almighty God who came as a babe to conquer sin and set us free. Friends, Christianity is a joy! It is not what those who don’t believe say, “Oh. My. Gosh. You Christians are so boring. You have to give up this and that.”

Friends Christianity is freeing because of the joy of knowing that I am living a life without regrets. I am not giving up anything. I am gaining so much.

Think of it this way. In fact, close your eyes for a minute. Imagine a gift that is so amazing – take a few minutes and really think about this gift. What would you do with it? How would you share it?

Now – consider this. God gave us a gift that is so much greater than anything you can imagine! It is 100 thousand times greater. How could I not want to go to church and thank him, and worship Him?

Isaiah 9:6 (read)

How can I not want to live a life that is pleasing to God? How could I not say thank-you Lord, each and every day for the gift of life – yes, but everlasting life? I will live my life on earth but will have full confidence that I will live a life eternally with Him!

This time of joyous celebration that comes around every December reminds me that the real meaning of Christmas is to give all the honor and the glory to Jesus – the Divine One.

Celebrate with your family with your friends but know that the opening of gifts is a small symbol of the greater joy in the gifts that God gave us. This joy of giving gifts to those who are important to us is a symbol of our love for them and their love for us! God gives us an abundance of love and it flows from God – to us to them! Allow the Lord into your life today!

John 1:14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Let’s Pray:

Dear God the Father, thank-you so much for gifting us with the Son, and then leaving us with the Holy Spirit until the end of time. Thank you for helping me to understand the true meaning of Christmas. Thank you for allowing me to understand that the truth of the season comes in the love that is shared from you to me! Dear Lord Jesus, today I ask you in a deeper way to come into my life. I repent from the sins of the past and ask for your forgiveness. I choose you, my God. I choose you today, and tomorrow. I ask you, Lord, to bless me and cleanse me. I ask that you fill me to overflowing with joy and your love. Help me to sin no more. Help me to follow you in all of the ways that are pleasing to you, my God. Thank you, Lord, for this gift that is more precious than any gift I can imagine. Dear Lord, I ask you know for these specific prayers for those I pray for now…

Thank you, Lord, for hearing my prayers and for answering them and I pray this in Jesus’ precious Name. Amen.

 

God Loves You

God Loves You | I probably don’t need to tell you that God loves you – however if you suffer from stress or find yourself overwhelmed you need to hear it again and again. In this episode, we will discuss God’s love and how closely tied it is to who we are and our relationships. | #podcast #christianpodcastGod Loves You ~ Episode 120

I probably don’t need to tell you that God loves you – however if you suffer from stress or find yourself overwhelmed you need to hear it again and again. In this episode, we will discuss God’s love and how closely tied it is to who we are and our relationships.

Thanks to our sponsor – Overcomer Movie to learn more about the DVD.

When I think about God’s love the refrain from a popular Bible song resonates although the words are slightly different than, “God loves you,” the words go — “Jesus loves you this I know because the Bible tells me so…” Yet do we really believe this and if we do why do we live a life that isn’t trusting that God’s got this – whatever “this” is in your life.

We take God’s love for granted. How do we know that He loves us?

  1. You exist – so the very fact that you are here is because of the fact that you were created. Your parents had to meet!
  2. You are who you are because of the love of God – our relationships hinge on who we believe God is – think about it.
  3. God has a purpose for you – yes, you. He created you for a reason and some understand it better than others but our entire life is striving to grow closer to him.

I purposely left out the fact that God sent His only son – to become man, in order to be born, suffer and die for our sins, and ultimately resurrected into to heaven. That is the number one reason I know that God loves me – but for me to know this I must be a professed Christian. John 3:16 is a favorite Bible passage of so many. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

We know God loves us because He loves us unconditionally. We do not need to perform good works or deeds in order to have God love us. He just does. Of course, we should do good things, please don’t misunderstand that it isn’t needed – the point here is that it isn’t needed for God’s love. We try to understand God with a human mindset. We love those who love us – we love those who are kind who gift us things who are welcoming and generous. But we can’t understand the mind of God – because for us it makes no sense.

Can we love unconditionally? No – it is very difficult to do – but for God all things are possible.

In the Bible, we read again and again about the mercy of God through the actions of his son Jesus. We read about mercy. We read about the Pharisees who often criticized him. Yet in Matthew 9:12 it says, “It is not those who are well who have need of a physician but those who are sick.” We are sick as sinners – we have a sickness in our souls and it is that sickness that causes us to doubt, to stress to be overwhelmed by this thing we call life. We need mercy and we need a Savior and it is in this Savior that loves us just because.

Think about that. Someone who loves you just because you are. Just because you exist. Who knew you before you were born, who knows the number of hairs on your head, who held you in the palm of His hand. Wow. Psalm 84:8 reads – “Show us, O Lord, your mercy; and grant us your salvation.” This is repeated again and again in our Bible readings during the time of Advent the days leading up to Christmas. We are reminded of this time and time again.

To receive the mercy and compassion of God we must show others mercy and compassion. This is not to be confused with God’s love. God’s love is unconditional. But there is, for a Christian a recourse if you will for sin. God teaches us in the parable of the Good Samaritan that because of sin (a man who was a Jew was robbed and left for dead. We learn that two people walk on without helping him, one man – the Samaritan stopped and helped the Jew – and he did this without a repayment. The Bible uses this as a lesson because the Jews and the Samaritans were adversaries – you can read more in Luke 10:25-37

The point here goes further that God knows our hearts. He knows what drives us – we can lie to the world but God knows our motivations. It is important for us to have compassion for others and if we have the love of God in our hearts this should come naturally.

Friends, for those of us who are believers we should go around looking joyful and hopeful with a smile on our face. Who would want to be a Christian if they think that Christians are a bunch of judgmental and depressed people! We need to open our hearts to God’s love – He is waiting with outstretched arms and all we have to do is say yes, Lord. More of you Lord and less of me.

Let’s pray.

Dear Lord, first I thank you for your unconditional love – I thank you for allowing me to be created and for giving me the opportunities to share the love you have given me with others. Pour into me oh, my God – your love and your mercy. Help me to be compassionate to others to be in the right place at the right time to be used by you! Help me to show this love to others. Take away my stress, my anger my feelings of being overwhelmed and replace them with the peace that surpasses all understanding knowing that you are right beside me. I pray particularly for the following intentions:  Thank you ahead of time Lord for all the blessings and provisions you send and I pray this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.


Thank you to our Sponsor -Overcomer Movie

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Joyful Family Celebrations

Joyful Family Celebrations | Joyful family celebrations take planning. No matter what time of the year we are in we can find ourselves overwhelmed! In this episode of One More Child Podcast, we will discuss how to look for the good in our family life. | #podcast #homeschoolpodcast Joyful Family Celebrations Episode 28

Joyful family celebrations take planning. No matter what time of the year we are in we can find ourselves overwhelmed! In this episode of One More Child Podcast, we will discuss how to look for the good in our family life.

Thanks to our sponsor – The Star Movie – limited run December 7 and 8th 2019 – the DVD is still available for purchase.

Faith brings us together. Happy Anniversary to The Star, which debuted on this day in 2017! Celebrate the film by seeing its re-release in theaters this holiday season, December 7 and 8! Tickets here: http://www.thestarmovie-tickets.com

Be sure to share this episode with a friend, it is easy to do by going to OMCP.com

My pastor has it right when he says that those who see good in others or situations always see good and for those who don’t they only see bad. It seems that the busier we are the more we become overwhelmed and less satisfied with life. I think it is all a matter of perspective.

When it comes to celebrations sometimes we put so much time in effort in impressing others that we lose sight of the real focus of the celebration. One year my then four-year-old daughter attended a birthday party hosted by a family with some amazing resources. When we drove onto the property we were greeted with balloons lining the driveway and signs leading the guests to park and a clown that greeted the children at the door. Of course, the inside of the home was on high-birthday-alert with signs, banners, balloons, and games. And yes there was even a pony ride. My daughter was so overwhelmed she did not want me to leave.

This one incident showed me that the key to happiness for our family was not in overwhelming the senses but in focusing on the joyful family celebration aspect, and if we invited a few friends then that would be fine.

We cannot please everyone and when we try to do this we will feel frustration. Joyful family celebrations are those in which we create memories.

Ask yourself these questions:

  1. What do I want my family to remember from this celebration?
  2. What is the overall goal? Is it a birthday memory or a milestone such as graduation?
  3. Are we celebrating a holiday? What is the one thing I want to do to make it memorable?
  4. Can I reuse things I have around the house?
  5. Can everyone participate in the setup and prep?

A friend recently shared that she didn’t buy gifts for her children once they reached a certain age for Christmas because they took family trips instead. She even did this for birthdays. The idea in her mind was to create a memory instead of buying an object they would eventually break or grow out of. Each family needs to make these decisions themselves and as with most things, whatever decision you make is probably right for your family.

Remember the focus is on the person, not the event. I doubt the four-year-old whose party we attended even remember that one event because more than likely her fifth, sixth and so forth were more spectacular. Talk to your child, your spouse and find out what they envision for that day? At one time my kids told me they did not want parties other than the immediate family, instead, we took a trip to an amusement park or their all-time favorite, camping.

As we approach the holiday season keep this in mind. Focus on the reason for the season and remember the joy begins with what is in our heart. Refresh your time with the Lord and He will provide an abundance of joy for you to pass on to your families! I pray this for you and yours especially as we head into our daily lives which are often filled with spills and tears. Know you are doing the best thing for your family taking the time to be with them. No one loves your kids the way you do and that my friends is the biggest blessing you can give them! Until next time – God’s blessing be upon you and your family.

 


Thank you to our Sponsor -The Star Movie

 

The Star Is Coming Back To Theaters for a Limited Time!

Experience The Star again December 7 and 8 in select theaters!
Back by popular demand, you and your family can celebrate the true meaning behind the season. Be sure to check out all of the great resources for your family to use this holiday season! There are discussion guides, along with tons of FREE downloadable activities! Don’t wait, get your tickets today!


 

Pro-Life Minsitry

Pro Life | Have you wanted to help the pro-life ministry? What can you do with love and compassion? With today's special guest is Father Frank Pavone known for his work with Priests For Life, he shares ways we can be involved to help bring in the culture of life. | #podcast #christianpodcast #pro-lifePro-life Ministry with Fr. Pavone Episode 27

Have you wanted to help the pro-life ministry? What can you do with love and compassion? With today’s special guest is Father Frank Pavone known for his work with Priests For Life, he shares ways we can be involved to help bring in the culture of life.

Thanks to our sponsor – One More Child available here.

Visit Fr. Pavone at his website:

About Father Pavone – Father Pavone is one of the most recognized pro-life advocates. He is also the President of the National Pro-life Religious Council, and the National Pastoral Director of the Silent No More Awareness Campaign and of Rachel’s Vineyard, the world’s largest ministry of healing after abortion.

Listen to the first interview with Father Pavone on Pro-Life

We often hear about the pro-life movement, but we’re really not sure what to do.

In the previous episode, we discussed Roe vs. Wade the legal decision that brought to the forefront the issue of abortion. Father Pavone knew Norma Mccorvey and was familiar with her decision to become a Christian. Father points out the pain and emotional hurt involved with those who would have an abortion. And that is something that we can’t forget, the person behind the decision. He encourages us to be empathic instead of being angry and pointing fingers. However, we want to help people realize there is a choice and many entities available to help.

Points to Remember:

  1. You can save lives.
  2. Realize those who feel they have no hope feel like they have to have an abortion.
  3. There are alternatives available and you can connect people with those alternatives.
  4. There are many websites for help!

Helpful Information.

  1. PregnancyCenters.org   You can type in a zip code and it shows the centers closest to where that person lives. They assess the needs of the individual and this is 24-7 and bilingual English. Just giving that information assures you that you can save someone’s life and spread the information in your community, have your churches put it in the church bulletin, talk to school counselors, make sure they know about it, spread the word in any way that you can.
  2. Rachel’s Vineyard is for people that have had abortions and they’re in great pain and are suffering deeply. This center helps people who are suffering the pain of an abortion to find healing and forgiveness and peace.
  3. A link on Priest for Life.org – Rachel’s Vineyard and Silent No More Testimonies

There are ministries, retreats, and resources close to where many people live – there is help out there. The greatest thing that anyone can do is to have this information at their fingertips. You can save lives and help to heal the wounds in people’s hearts. We are not being judgmental here, we’re not pointing fingers, we’re not to condemn. Once people realize the positive spirit in which the pro-life movement operates, then they’ll be ready to get involved in a whole bunch of the other activities, which we can also discuss as we continue here.

Abortion is such a deep wound that at first, the person who experiences it doesn’t even want to acknowledge it happened. They shut down a whole part of themselves, their relationships, etc. So many couples that we have dealt with this whether they were married or not, once they went to get the abortion we constantly hear them say, “Well, we never spoke about it again.”

And, and it is a whole dimension of the person and of the relationship that just shuts down, that’s not healthy. And that’s not the path to healing. It doesn’t go away just because we ignore it. And then once people do start facing up to what they realize is something that is holding them back from healing it will help them recover.

Questions People Ask After Abortion:

  1. What does that mean for my future?
  2. Can I trust myself anymore?
  3. Can I trust those around me?
  4. Can I trust God?

This leads to a terrible downward spiral and devastation. It leads to all sorts of other problems, self-destructive behavior or substance abuse sometimes suicidal behavior. It leads to broken relationships, inability to make decisions or to carry on with one’s education or career. And on and on. Not to mention various physical damage that’s done overall. One of the things we can do to help people find the path to healing is to go to Abortion testimonies.com.  This is part of our silent no more campaign. Many people have survived abortion and hey want to share their story.

Those stories are out there precisely for us all to use so that people can understand how, how terribly painful and destructive abortion is. And again, lead them away from that path.

What is Planned Parenthood?

Let’s put it this way. If you ask the question, “What is the largest business in the world that sells the most abortions?” It’s planned Parenthood. It is the largest abortion business in the world. It is furthermore an organization that has been involved in many illegal activities. It’s under investigation by federal and state governments. And it is a very political organization. Planned Parenthood pours, tens of millions of dollars into the campaigns of politicians that want to keep abortion going.

The title sounds very nice, but it’s not about planning to be a parent. It’s about planning not to be a parent. It’s how to kill the child inside of you. This, unfortunately, is the biggest commitment that planned Parenthood has. So, you know, we need to learn more about it. But the good news is that there are many more health care facilities for women and for all citizens in America that do not perform abortions. Many more of those facilities exist than do the planned Parenthood facilities. There’s plenty of ways to give healthcare without killing children,

Right? I mean, there are many free clinics that are set up in my own town. If you cannot afford you know, help there, there are places that you can go. So you know, when we know that on an intellectual basis, but sometimes it’s kind of nice to reveal. I mean, I love again, how you put that, you know, what is the largest business in the world that does abortions. And so that does, again, very clearly a father Frank Pavone is known for his clarity of words and really bringing simplicity to, you know, what it actually does. So if someone wants to get involved in the pro-life movement, I’m very blessed. Where I live, we have a very strong organization and you know, these ladies are tireless and we are able to, you know go on a regular basis even if people want to at least once a month. You know, different churches are praying outside of an abortion clinic that is in town. Sadly, we still have them here. So what are some things that people can do if they want to learn more information on how they can help. I know you have the priest for life.org/volunteer and again, I’ll have these on the show notes.

How To Volunteer:

  1. Visit the Priests for Life volunteer page. – The volunteer page gives people an opportunity to let us know what they would like to do, especially in regard to elections. We have want to help pro-life candidates get into office. We need good law makers. And if we want the laws to protect the unborn! We need to elect lawmakers that are willing to do that. So we help people to get involved in that way.
  2. There’s also a website we have called stop abortion now.org and what we have there are action alerts, especially if there is going to be a law passed, for example, in Congress that would advance the protection of the unborn. You know, we need people to make a little call, call into their representative, let them know that they support that bill or, or vice versa. If there’s a bad bill in the Congress or in an individual state that’s going to expand abortion. We need people to get on the phone, and make some calls and say, “Hey, I don’t believe in this.” You don’t have to be an expert on the bill. You just have to say, Hey, I’m a voter. I’m a taxpayer and I don’t like this. And that’s really all you have to say. But we guide people on how to do that and stop abortion.
  3. We have prayer campaign.org where people can participate in different activities, for example, prayer vigils that take place in the community 40 days for life, etc.

We pray that Father Pavone continues to be blessed and the Lord fills him with all that he needs to continue on with this very important ministry. I know it is difficult. There’s a lot of opposition. Even among leaders who should be helpful and supportive and you have persevered.

 

 

Gift Giving

Gift Giving | What is the greatest gift that we can give to others? Well there are plenty that come to mind but the greatest gift-giving comes from Almighty God and His Son, Jesus. | #ChristianPodcast #podcastGift Giving Episode 119

What is the greatest gift that we can give to others? Well, there are plenty that come to mind but the greatest gift-giving comes from Almighty God and His Son, Jesus. In this episode, we will discuss how gift-giving sometimes takes center stage when the focus should be on the Lord!

Thanks to our sponsor – The Star Movie – limited run December 7 and 8th 2019 – the DVD is still available for purchase.

Faith brings us together. Happy Anniversary to The Star, which debuted on this day in 2017! Celebrate the film by seeing its re-release in theaters this holiday season, December 7 and 8! Tickets here: http://www.thestarmovie-tickets.com

We celebrate Jesus at Christmas and Easter the two biggest seasons for Christians. And, when my kids were little I’d ask them what season was their favorite and would you believe it was Easter? Yes, there was definitely candy involved but the main reason was the fasting that came beforehand!

As a Catholic-Christian we celebrate the 40 days of Lent the time leading up to Easter Sunday and we “give up” something. Whether it is tangible like chocolate or candy to something like not being negative or perhaps setting aside a longer period of time to pray. In this giving up we are reminded each time we want to stray that we can not and this equates and is symbolic for giving up sin. So when Easter Sunday comes it is a time to put aside the fasting and to celebrate!

But, at Christmas time while Advent is similar to Lent in that we are counting down to the glorious day of our Savior’s birth (and yes – I realize it is not the exact date). It is much more difficult with full calendars, invitations from friends and families and a variety of to-do’s that center around baking – shopping or writing cards.

Christmas tends to be a time of giving – and while we give we often overlook that all some people need is our gift of compassion and to feel needed. When we are in the midst of our giving we overlook the real needs.

I once did a podcast on the things that kids want for presents (Presents Kids WantPresents Kids Can Make) and it was not what you might think. Sure that shiny object is fun for a short span of time but truthfully the gifts that you can give that last often can not be purchased from a store.

My kid’s favorite gifts consisted of time camping or time we spent together as a family reading in front of the fireplace. Once on a trip to Canada from Florida, my son asked if I brought along our storybook and if we could read in front of the fireplace in the lobby of the hotel! Friends, it was summer! What did this show me? That my son loved the time we spent together.

The gifts that keep on giving are the gifts we consider and think about. It is the gifts of baked goods, or the refrigerator magnets grandkids make, or just time spent doing something special.

My gifts to my grandkids consist of Zoo Family Membership and things they need. Most of all it will be time spent together baking and doing crafts – one of my favorite things and theirs as well. But the greatest gift you can give your family? The gift of Love and the gift of Faith.

Faith is the gift that keeps on giving. When my kids were little I created an Advent Calendar and each day I gave them a number, on the back was a Scripture Verse and a short note I wrote them. It was not only a count down to Christmas but a time of prayer and personal love notes written to them! The calendar is still up on two of my children’s rooms – all these years later! Another way we celebrated faith is with an Advent Wreath and we lit one calendar each week (and each evening we lit that same candle). We would pray a Scripture verse each night and then spent time in prayer for our family and each of us gave a “praise report,” what we were thankful for each day.

Remember this year that the best gifts are the ones that last!

Dear Lord Jesus thank you for giving me the gift of faith – and I ask, precious Lord that you give me the grace to pass on this gift with those I love and cherish! I know this is one of the greatest gifts are love and the gift of faith. Please fill me to overflowing with your love, the love that surpasses all understanding so that I may share this love with others. Please help me with my gift-giving this year to focus on the person and their needs. Please, Lord, hear the prayers I pray for the following people … help them Lord in their struggles and bring joy and victory in the Name of Jesus! And, I pray this in Your precious Name, My God. Amen!

 


Thank you to our Sponsor -The Star Movie

 

The Star Is Coming Back To Theaters for a Limited Time!

Experience The Star again December 7 and 8 in select theaters!
Back by popular demand, you and your family can celebrate the true meaning behind the season. Be sure to check out all of the great resources for your family to use this holiday season! There are discussion guides, along with tons of FREE downloadable activities! Don’t wait, get your tickets today!

Peace Within Families

Peaceful Families | Next to world peace, we want peace within families! I’ve heard horror stories of siblings not talking to each other for years and in this episode, we will pray for broken families and those who are lost to the hope of Jesus. | #ChristianPodcast #podcastPeace Within Families Episode 118

Next to world peace, we want peace within families! I’ve heard horror stories of siblings not talking to each other for years and in this episode, we will pray for broken families and those who are lost to the hope of Jesus.

Thanks to our sponsor – Media Angels, Inc. and don’t forget to download our Prayer Journal free for subscribers on this website.

Peace on earth – peace be with you – peace within families it all goes hand-in-hand. I sometimes marvel that we want world peace but those who are born with the same parents, sometimes can’t get along! Of course, there are many psychological reasons that this happens, but truthfully the real reasons are not so complex if we really think about it.

I’ve created podcasts on the topic of forgiveness and sometimes it is the hurt and the forgiveness that keeps people apart. One of the biggest problems I see among families it the ability to communicate.

We get upset, our feelings get hurt, we can’t understand, we are floored and we are … well, fill in the blanks. We’ve all had arguments with those we love – and the more you love the harder it is at times to keep from getting hurt. We wear our hearts on our sleeves especially those of us who are parents, and we hope that our kids and our grandkids will see that we love them. But, seeing is often difficult when our actions may show something different.

How do we show we love – for different people it is in different ways – two quick examples for me it is doing something, baking you cookies, having you over for a meal, opening my home or well-doing. For my husband, it is time – and it is kindness. But peace is something that transcends doing!

John 16:33

Peace is the feeling of being protected, safe and most of all it happens when we feel people understand us. That is why within families without good communication it falls apart! With God we talk, He listens – very rarely do we hear the Lord … but when we do, whether it is through the Word, a friend or in prayer it may not be what we want to hear.

God is our safe haven. In God, we are guaranteed peace. Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

But back to peace within families – how do we achieve this? Especially in the toxic climate in which we, as Americans live – and at the time of this recording! I’ve heard of family members who avoid getting together for the holidays because they do not want to get into heated discussions!

So friends, here are some things to pray about if we want peace!

  1. Pray for the Lord to shower those you love and are family members with love, and that surpasses all understanding. Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
  2. Listen: when others talk listen and pray for discernment – and Proverbs 1:5 Let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance—
  3. Pray to do God’s will – whether that is to comfort or love. We don’t have to agree but we can do what God would do – maybe not agree, but love

Only God can love unconditionally but I do believe that as family members we have a special grace from God to forgive if we allow ourselves to be humbled and realize we are not perfect! I know hard to do and easy to say –

SO, Let’s Pray for His Divine Grace.

Dear Jesus, I pray for peace within my family. I know You love me all the time with your unconditional love and I ask for the Divine grace to love those who have hurt me and ask that those I have hurt forgive me. Lord I don’t want to conform or be less than I am, I want to be a shining star that shows Your love to others. I want to reflect Your light, and I want to be the one who plants the seeds for You to reap. I ask my God that you bless those I pray for and specifically for their needs … thank-you Jesus for all you have done in my family and for the peace and joy that we will feel – and I pray this in Jesus, precious Name. Amen.

Publishing Kids Books

Publishing Kids Books | Have you wanted to publish books? What about publishing kids books? Today my guest, Autumn McKay has successfully published books along with her husband, Seth. These books are geared for little ones and she shares her journey with you! | #podcast #publishingkidsbooks #booksPublishing Kids Books ~ Episode 22

Have you wanted to publish books? What about publishing kids books? Today my guest, Autumn McKay has successfully published books along with her husband, Seth. These books are geared for little ones and she shares her journey with you!

Thanks to our sponsor Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference  

 

Publishing Kids Books Top Tips:

  1. An idea that resonates with your buyer – in this case the author, Autumn McKay is a teacher who geared her books currently for kindergarten and younger. In addition, her engineer husband also wrote coloring books.
  2. Coloring books – great idea, because they are consumed. Consumable books are a great way to generate additional sales.
  3. Traditional vs. Self-publishing? Traditional publishers still want authors to market their own books, and the McKays decided it was in their best interest to self-publish and keep all the profit.
  4. Instagram is a way the book is marketed and a way to gather emails.
  5. Call to action – whether you are on an interview, speaking before groups of pre-school moms, or even on social media giving away something helps. Autumn used a lead magnet – giving the listener a “taste” of what her books are like in exchange for an email to add to her list. She can then give special promotions and more. Here is a call to action Autumn used as a lead generator. 
  6. Email lists are important, they are a way for the subscriber to learn more about the author and what the author offers.
  7. Giving the listener a PDF of books – here is an example of what Autumn’s books: BestMomIdeas Book Page PDF

You may want to check out Felice’s book, Information In A Nutshell Writing and Publishing:

 

 

 

Thankful All The Time

Thankful All The Time | Don’t you wish we could be thankful all the time? Especially in this time of joy sometimes we can’t see because we are covered with the business of every day. In this episode, we will discuss ways to keep thankfulness at the forefront of each day. | #ChristianPodcast #podcast Thankful All The Time Episode 117

Don’t you wish we could be thankful all the time? Especially in this time of joy sometimes we can’t see because we are covered with the business of every day. In this episode, we will discuss ways to keep thankfulness at the forefront of each day.

Thanks to our sponsor, Sony / Affirms Films and the movie A Beautiful Day Movie.

Colossians 3:15Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.

Can we be called to peace and thankfulness – of course, Scripture command it but without the love and providence of Almighty God we can’t do it alone. If only we have time, right? It is always about time. It is the one thing people say to me over and over again.

  1. I have not time to pray.
  2. I have no time to listen to podcasts.
  3. I have no time – no time – no time.

In fact, I bought into the no-time lie for so many years that I am not a time hoarder – I hate to waste time! I am serious about this – but God has shown me that HIS ways are so much greater than my ways.

I thought that someday when my kids were grown I’d have so much time. You know I use to worry that I would be lonely, and I would have nothing to do – whatever would I do if I wasn’t being a mom to five and helping my husband with his business as well as working on mine – in my spare time? Well, fast forward and I’m here! I’m in an almost-empty-nester home and have so many projects underway that I forget the main thing I want to focus on this time of the year and that is being thankful, not only each day but all the time.

Why? Because it reminds me that my heritage is not here on earth but above. I am reminded that when I am weak He is strong. I am nothing without God in my life. Nothing, not even chocolate makes me happy the way God does! I have a glass paperweight that says “We do not know what the future holds, but we do know Who holds the future.”

Who holds your future? Is it your accomplishments? Is it the people you love in your life, your family? Your friends? The future is not only now and if we can think “be thankful all the time” even in the midst of hardship, but we do have a slice of heaven with us each day. How do we grow for the better? Usually, it is after overcoming a hardship in our life. We can have a wonderful testimony at the end and always point to God. In fact, have you ever looked back to a particularly difficult time in your life and seen the hand of God? I have and then I’m sad that I was not more thankful for the situation.

I’m reminded of this wonderful scripture – Hebrews 12:28  Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe

The song 10,000 Reasons, “Bless the Lord oh, my soul, worship His Holy Name.”

When we play praise and worship music it is easier to be reminded of the ways we should be thankful all the time.

Sometimes we just need to write the ways we are thankful.

  1. I am so thankful for you my, God.
  2. I am so thankful for the family you have gifted me with.
  3. I am so thankful for my Christian friends.
  4. I am so thankful for my non-Christian friends because you have put them in my life for your Divine purpose – not mine!
  5. I am so thankful for the air I breathe, for the day you’ve given me, for the way you love me, for the grace you’ve given me for continuing each and every day.
  6. Add your own ways to be thankful!

Funny story – I’ve always avoided exercise and I married a man who was not only a stellar and decorated athlete – but he was a Physical Education major and my children are almost all athletic. Why avoid exercise – oh, we don’t have enough time for me to share all the reasons. But, what am I most thankful for now – the fact that my husband purchased a treadmill for me! Yes, I am making the time for walking each and every day and I have used this time to pray – to listen to podcasts and to read, all while walking in my own home.

Who would have thought! Friends, the strangest things happen in life – and they are mostly wonderful! So, I praise God for the gift of time to walk each day.

Ephesians 5:20

2 Timothy 1:7

Let’s pray:

Dear Lord Jesus, I worship you and I love you – You have given me a spirit that is not timid – a spirt that give us power, love and self-discipline and I chose you Lord – 1000x a day I chose You! I come just as I am and you know all of my faults, I come to you with an open heart – I come asking for the spirit to be thankful all the time and joyous! I ask you, Lord, to bless those I pray for now … and I thank you, my God, for all the wonderful blessings ahead of time because you are an awesome and righteous God! I praise you and I thank you, Amen!

 

 


Thank you to our Sponsor – A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood Movie!

Tom Hanks portrays Mister Rogers in A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, a timely story of kindness triumphing over cynicism, based on the true story of a real-life friendship between Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod. After a jaded magazine writer (Emmy winner Matthew Rhys) is assigned a profile of Fred Rogers, he overcomes his skepticism, learning about kindness, love and forgiveness from America’s most beloved neighbor.

Communication Coach

Communicators Coach | Have you wondered what a communication coach does, well with Marnie Swedberg is an expert. Do you wish you had a ministry or were a speaker? Marnie gives you great information that will launch or grow your career. | #christianpodcast #podcastInside The Mind of a Communication Coach with Special Guest, Marnie Swedberg

Have you wondered what a communication coach does, well with Marnie Swedberg is an expert. Do you wish you had a ministry or were a speaker? Marnie gives you great information that will launch or grow your career.

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels host of the Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference.

Do everything for the glory of God! Marnie is a coach and mentors communicators.

Learn more about Marnie at Marnie.com

What is your focus and what did God create you to do? Cause we all want to do everything or what somebody else is doing, but what God wants us to do is what he created us to do. Marnie has learned this and her business focus is to help authors and speakers to achieve their best.

The Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference is the place to be in February and Marnie will begin a session with teaching about powerful speed networking and getting the most from your introduction. She will share how one of the most powerful ways to meet and be remembered by people that you just meet.

We discuss:

  1. How do you build your ministry?
  2. Learn the keys to communication?
  3. What can a communication coach teach you?
  4. Building a solid foundation with God – God is in the driver’s seat.
  5. Collaboration and networking component

What is your role as a Communicator:

Insider strategies and tips focus on targeting your topics, titles, and descriptions in order to capture the attention of your focus audience. Publishers, producers, and planners work with people all the time. Do you know how to position yourself so that you get noticed? What if you want to be on a guest blogger or a guest on a podcast? These are things you will learn at the Communicators Conference. 

You will learn about ways to explode your audience with targeted topics, titles and 30-word wonders as well as so many other things. There is a skill to bubbling to the top of the pile. And that’s where Marnie works with the speakers over at women’s speakers.com. My goal is to help women get ready, get seen and get booked because those all three are critically important. And that’s what we’re going to be doing at this conference to work on the publicity piece.

Coaching for Communicators is important if you want to take your message to a new level. Marnie will do some in-person coaching.

Sometimes it seems like you might be going down a rabbit trail. But honestly that’s how God holds the world together. If you look at the world it’s like this big web and that’s how women’s minds are. Our minds are like a huge web and it’s this big rule of you know electrical connections and everything’s connected to everything else. These coaching, the group sessions are so powerful. So I’m going to be doing two of them. One of them just on your basic speaking ministry, what are your most pressing questions and the other one on the international focus, how to, how to think about going global. And it’s a, it’s a specific session as well. Like it’s going to even include like a packing list for when you’re traveling to an impoverished nation. I mean we’re going to get detailed as well. How to think about it.

When you actually get to opportunity to meet these people in person, to actually connect with them, eye to eye, to see their body language, to have a hug, to hold hands and pray together. This is a whole different dimension. And I think one of the things I’m most excited about is the opportunity for networking and collaborating at this next level where yes, you can reach out to people by email. And I have so many great friends who have never yet met face to face and some of you are coming to the conference. I’m so excited. But for those of you who can’t decide, just pray about it, just ask God, is this, is this something that I should be attending?

Learn more at the Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference.com

 

 

Pro-Life & Family

Pro-Life Family | Education in the pro-life family with the expert in this movement. In this episode, we are going to discuss the history of the pro-life movement and why we need to learn the importance of the ministry. | #Christianpodcast #podcastPro-Life and Family Episode 26 with Special Guest Fr. Frank Pavone

Education in the pro-life family with the expert in this movement. In this episode, we are going to discuss the history of the pro-life movement and why we need to learn the importance of the ministry for life and what we are up against. Secondly, in the next podcast, we will discuss what we can do become more involved why now is the time that our voices are needed in this important movement.

Visit Fr. Pavone at his website:

About Father Pavone – Father Pavone is one of the most recognized pro-life advocates. He is also the President of the National Pro-life Religious Council, and the National Pastoral Director of the Silent No More Awareness Campaign and of Rachel’s Vineyard, the world’s largest ministry of healing after abortion.

We will discuss the history of the pro-life movement as well as ways to get involved (in the next episode).

In 1973, the Supreme court legalized abortion throughout pregnancy in the United States by its decision Roe versus Wade. And right after that pro-life efforts began there. In fact, there were some pro-life efforts that began before Roe V Wade. But the movement really began to grow as people said, children in the womb need protection. We need to do something to reverse this policy.

During that time, Pavone was in high school and became aware of abortion of the pro-life movement.

  1. In 1976 Pavone went to Washington DC on the first annual March for Life. He was impressed by the crowd, by the diversity of it, by the determination of these people, by the fact that even though they were confronting a very tragic and sad reality, they were very joyful and positive and prayerful.
  2. Began to get involved in local pro-life activities. And at the same time I felt the call to the priesthood. Long story short, I ended up getting ordained and through all my seminary years and into those first years of the priesthood, abortion was always front and center.
  3. Fr. Pavone preached about it frequently as a new priest. And then I came to a point where I experienced what I can only call a call of conscience. I was very happy doing the work in the parish and doing some teaching as well. But pro-life work became the dominant alarm going off in my mind. And I came to the point where I said, Lord, I, I need to devote myself to this full time.
  4. Felt the need to give his focus to defending the unborn. Cardinal John O’Connor of New York gave him permission to do that in 1993 as the first full-time director of priests for life. And I’ve been doing it ever since.

Pro-Life & Family – There is so much pain for those involved.

People become so emotionally volatile because there’s so much pain involved. Everyone is hurting from one for one reason or another by abortion either because of direct involvement, indirect involvement or just because of the fact that it’s happening all around us. It’s very painful.

  1. So we have to acknowledge that pain.
  2. We have to let people know that we are on their side.
  3. You know, we’re not judging them.
  4. We’re not condemning them.
  5. We’re not against them.
  6. We’re not their enemy.

And if we can convey that by our words and by our tone and by our actions as that should be done first, calm others down. This isn’t personal. You know, this is, we were trying to discuss an issue here.

What is the Pro-Life Issue?

  1. The last thing that abortion supporters want to talk about is abortion.
  2. They talked about the right to choose. Well, that’s not a discussion about abortion. Now you’re talking about who has the right to choose something.
  3. But you have to start by talking about what the something is you, as you’re talking about, obviously the right to choose abortion
  4. Start by talking about what an abortion is.
  5. That cuts through the fog and the distraction and the slogan.
  6. The good news about asking that question is we don’t have to figure out what it is. We just have to read the medical textbooks on how you do abortions or the public testimony of all kinds of doctors and nurses and physician assistants and others that have taken part in an abortion.
  7. When people get right down to it – they do not agree with the abortion procedure.

The strength of the other side comes from their despair, they’re scared.

  1. The of the pro-abortion side has always used the courts to advance their agenda. Starting with Roe V Wade itself, this has never sprung from the will or the vote of the people.
  2. On the other hand, the pro-life movement has always used the legislature’s, including in the States to advance the protection of the unborn, even in the light of Roe versus Wade.
  3. What’s happening now, thanks especially to President Trump and his administration is that more and more pro-life judges are being put in place all across the country.
  4. The other side is saying, “Hey, we want legal abortion. We’ve always wanted legal abortion all throughout pregnancy.” And it’s the courts that have protected that. If the courts are moving now in the wrong direction according to them the wrong direction, we’re going to have to see what we can do in those legislatures that are controlled by Democrats because they are the party that favors abortion without any limits.

Norma (from Roe vs. Wade) was a friend of Father Pavone and he had the privilege of not only getting to know her, he received her into the Catholic church back in 1998. In the early seventies, the lawyers that wanted to change the laws on abortion recruited her. She was pregnant for the third time, didn’t know what to do. And they basically promised her that they would help her. And for her, that meant they would help her, not that they would try to change the law for the whole country. So she was used, they never did help her. She ended up giving birth to the baby and placing the baby for adoption. But meanwhile, in her case, Roe vs. Wade ended up striking down the laws protecting babies. And when she found out about that by reading the Dallas morning news, she learned she was technically the winner of the case.

She wasn’t happy. She was devastated. And, and, and she always was ambivalent about abortion. And, and even in those early years when the pro-abortion groups said to her, Oh, you’ve got to tell the world who you are and write a book and they championed her. Even in those days. She was uncomfortable with abortion. And then as time went on, she became more and more pro-life until the point that n 1995, she got baptized as a Christian. Fr. Pavone started working for the pro-life group. Three years later she decided to become a Catholic. She spent the rest of her life working against abortion. And she, she passed away a few years ago, but was very, very committed to overturning the decision that bears her name.

  1. Abortion is becoming less and less popular, but it’s still happening at alarming rates.
  2. Even though those rates are going down, people have to work hard together to save lives.
  3. In the meanwhile to change the laws and policies, we must become educated.
  4. Join the winning team and save more lives.
    1. Equip yourself with knowledge of the issue, not only how to talk about it, but how to actually do the things that do save lives.
    2. Do things that change the laws and public policies. Because we have the opportunity now to do that. More and more people are waking up realizing how bad our abortion policy is, realizing how bad abortion itself is. If we don’t seize this opportunity now, things could get harder later on if the political winds change again in the wrong direction, or if people forget.
    3. Elect pro-life candidates
    4. Get involved in the movement. Everyone can save lives. And here’s the thing I always say is that everyone listening to us has to understand there are certain lives that only they can save, certain people only they can reach. And so life literally depends on it for us getting involved in this great movement.

 

 


Thank you to our Sponsor – A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood Movie!

Tom Hanks portrays Mister Rogers in A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, a timely story of kindness triumphing over cynicism, based on the true story of a real-life friendship between Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod. After a jaded magazine writer (Emmy winner Matthew Rhys) is assigned a profile of Fred Rogers, he overcomes his skepticism, learning about kindness, love and forgiveness from America’s most beloved neighbor.

Mercy and Thoughtfulness of Our God

Mercy and Thoughtfulness | This is a time of mercy and thoughtfulness because with both of these items there is hope. It is almost like a math equation. Mercy + Thoughtfulness = Hope, but more than that God has an abundance of both. | #christianpodcast #podcast #mercyMercy and Thoughtfulness Episode 116

This is a time of mercy and thoughtfulness because with both of these items there is hope. It is almost like a math equation. Mercy + Thoughtfulness = Hope, but more than that God has an abundance of both.

Thanks to our sponsor, Sony / Affirms Films and the movie A Beautiful Day Movie.

Show Notes: Mercy and Thoughtfulness

Who else but the creator of the universe considers the sinfulness of man yet gives us mercy to overcome thought His ever-present Spirit and His love for us in the small and simple things. When you think about the things that bring us joy on an ongoing daily basis it isn’t looking down on your fingers and a piece of jewelry you are wearing, or admiring a handbag – or if you are a guy, success in business, being a good provider or perhaps winning at a game or having a team win or something similar.

The things that give us joy are those things that are fleeting like family, friends, love, and those more everlasting like faith, and hope. God thought of everything. God is thoughtful!

God is merciful and God is truth – God is everything that is good. But do we realize this in our everyday life or do we allow our situations to get us down? If you look up the word thoughtfulness in the Bible you won’t find one entry – try it! But we do know by definition the Lord is thoughtful because He has provided for us in so many ways that we can never thank him enough or repay him!

Mercy and Thoughtfulness takes grace from God!

I love the Book of Proverbs because if you want to see morsels of truth you should read it end to end. I’m going to read you some wisdom from Proverbs 18 – just a few verses because I invite you to read it for yourself in your quiet time and meditate on the words…

Do we have the heart to discern – to acknowledge that God is the seat of mercy and thoughtfulness for our lives – that we want to seek out the wise and not the foolish. SO many times friends we are wiped out because of something we have no control over.

Think about it: Are there things in your life you are holding on to that you can not control? Are there people in your life that bring you down to your knees? For all of those things, we can not control that hold us bound – put them on paper and release them to the Lord. For all those people who upset or bother us – pray for them. In fact, I am taking my own advice and some people that I do not know personally but are upsetting to me are going to be the recipient of my prayers starting today!

The human spirit in Proverbs 14 talks about how we can overcome illness but our spirits become crushed by so many things in this world. Our spirits are our reasoning powers – they consist of the ability to make decisions, have insights and judgments, to reason and understand, to be aware and have feelings, emotions – and passions! But our souls – our souls will not die. Our bodies will die and our spirt might be crushed but our soul, if we are a believer will rest with God – and that my friends is the goal of my life to do everything I can each and every day to be held to account by a merciful God.

Do you praise God for His Mercy – for His thoughtfulness – for His creation? Remember this when we are down or “crushed” as Proverbs reminds us by the weight of the world.

God is the giver of all gifts – as I record this we are coming into the time of Thanksgiving and Christmas times that either bring you warmth and joy or make you sad. Why are we sad? Usually, it is for things we can not control, such as the death of a loved one or someone we are missing. And, yes – we remember as we should and keep those we love close to our hearts but not to the point that we can not move forward and be present for those who are here and need us.

Every single one of us is needed – do not let the enemy rob you of your joy and peace. We are needed as prayer warriors as those who help our families, those at church or our neighbors. Ask the Lord each day – how do you want to use me today, Lord?

Proverbs 18:16 says a gift opens the way – who is not receptive to gifts? But, maybe you are like me and like to give gifts rather than receive? Interesting side note here – the Lord taught me that it was okay to receive gifts. There was a time when money was tight and I could not give as I wanted and someone gifted me. Instead of being grateful I was horrified and wanted to refuse the gift! But, then a wise pastor reminded me that in time past when I gave the recipients were grateful. The gift was ultimately from God. God knows our hearts and He does provide – not always as we want but as He wishes.

If we are filled by God’s love we can’t help to be overflowing with love for others. Think about it. God’s love spills over on us and it gives us so much joy we can not help to share this joy with others.

Let’s Pray: God you gift us with so many things but your mercy and thoughtfulness for the little and big things in our lives often go unnoticed or overlooked by us. You are the author of life. You are the giver of every good thing. During this time of giving thanks, we ask you, Lord, to help us to remember those who are less fortunate, and to bring to mind people you want us to pray for on a daily basis. Dear Lord we pray for these people right now, and those near to our hearts … Thank you, Lord, for blessing me with your love, your joy, and your mercy. And I pray this in Jesus’ Name, Amen!

 


Thank you to our Sponsor – A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood Movie!

Tom Hanks portrays Mister Rogers in A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, a timely story of kindness triumphing over cynicism, based on the true story of a real-life friendship between Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod. After a jaded magazine writer (Emmy winner Matthew Rhys) is assigned a profile of Fred Rogers, he overcomes his skepticism, learning about kindness, love and forgiveness from America’s most beloved neighbor.

Learning At Conferences

Learning at Conferences | Are you ready? Cindy Rushton's back! Learning at conferences is important but so much more important if it is live! Join Felice Gerwitz and Cindy Rushton as she shares! | #podcast #christianpodcast #christianconferenceLearning At Conferences Episode 20 – with Cindy Rushton

Are you ready? Cindy Rushton’s back! Learning at conferences is important but so much more important if it is live! Join Felice Gerwitz and Cindy Rushton as she shares what she learned at a recent event and how wonderful the connections were, and what she learned. So much great information for you!

Thanks to our sponsor – Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels host of the Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference.

Want to connect with Cindy?

Cindy Rushton’s Website – CindyRushton.com

Facebook Page – Stepping Up To Your Call

Why attend a live conference? Learning at conferences takes center stage in person!

Here are some things that may help you!

  1. Pay ahead – it is easy to have excuses of why you can’t go.
  2. Plan effectively – take notes but plan to implement.
  3. 31-day challenge ahead of time – get your mindset right!
  4. Connections – a great way to meet people.
  5. Connections on groups such as Facebook.

Conferences, especially learning at conferences when it comes to live events are time and money commitment. When you are invested you tend to want a return on your investment and that is why you will take special care in learning, and actually using the information. Live events challenge you. They introduce you to the mindset of a winner. A winner’s mentality. Many times we want to remain humble and have humility – I get it! But it also means we must focus on succeeding and working smart!

Be sure to connect with Cindy on her Facebook group for the encouragement you need.

 

Faithful Families

Faithful Families | As we approach the season of joy, we look at this through the eyes of faithful families. But does this always happen? What can we do when we have loved ones who have left their faith behind or loved ones that we want to encourage and pray for? | #christianpodcast #faithfulfamilies #UCPNFaithful Families Episode 115

As we approach the season of joy, we look at this through the eyes of faithful families. But does this always happen? What can we do when we have loved ones who have left their faith behind or loved ones that we want to encourage and pray for? Or loved ones who have let us down? In this episode, we will discuss faith from the standpoint of putting God first and all else second.

I want to thank our sponsor, Sony / Affirms Films and the movie A Beautiful Day Movie.

  1. We know the importance of faithful families but how can we accomplish this in a broken world?
    • Constantly sabotaged with the media, education systems that may not align with our thought, etc.
  2. God created perfection – after each day of creation he said, “it was good,” but after he created man on the sixth day he said, “it is very good.”
    • Man was created in the image and likeness – and it was very good.
  3. Only God will not let us down!

The Bible tells us that

1 Corinthians 13 [Full Chapter]

The Excellence of Love ] If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing. …
Genesis 1:27-28
27 God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the [a]sky and over every living thing that [b]moves on the earth.
So 1 Corinthians 13 tells us that we must have love – and if we don’t have love we are like a noisy gong — and if we have faith to move mountains but don’t have love were are like nothing – and we are told in Genesis 1:28 that we are to be fruitful and multiply. So, we have love and we have a family – husband – wife – kids – inlaws – brothers – sisters – parents – grandparents – extended family and friends, that is when life gets messy.
We mess up and many times we get upset because of what we believe the ideal is – what we see on television, or the movies, or novels, or our best friend’s marriage. We always think the other person has it together – knows what they are doing – is a better parent – a better person, a better everything.
Don’t believe it! It is a lie. I want to do an entire episode on the lies we tell ourselves but in a nutshell – we listen to these lies we tell ourselves but as the author, we can change the script! So change it, believe that God doesn’t create junk. God is amazing, all-powerful, wonderful and such a gentleman – he allows us free will. And since we have this free will we love our families even when there is a mess.

Importance of faithful families

  1. We as a family are a microcosm of the Holy Family – Jesus, Mary, and Joseph.
  2. We are on a special mission as apostles, do we listen to what the Lord is telling us and apply it first to our lives (put on your own oxygen mask0 and then to others.
  3. We are laborers. We are the workers and it is up to the Lord to harvest.

Some people carry around guilt about their status as a family or having a faithful family or a family that loves the Lord. Yes, that is our ideal and we need to strive for this ideal. But, it is up to God to reap the seeds we plant. I know some of us came from broken homes or homes that lacked love or awful things that have happened in the past. But, all good things come from God and we need to pray for those who have hurt us and let go.

Pray and let go!

Faithful families require work – it takes time to pull out the Bible, read stories about Holy men and women of God, look for mentors, those who can lead you such as your church group and pastor. Pray. Pray. Pray. And remember God has this. No matter what this is. If we are faithful and keep our eyes on Jesus it is difficult to see the fault in others.

Faithful Families:

  1. Make God the Lord of your home.
  2. Prioritize prayer – morning and evening prayer.
  3. Pray at meals even when out.
  4. Discuss God and faith as a family.
  5. When all else fails pray and let go.

Let’s Pray:

Dear Heavenly Father, we know all things are good, very good at your hands. You will for us is to allow us to live our lives in a way that is pleasing to you, but we fail each other, we fail ourselves and most of all we fail you – but through all of this you are love and mercy. You, my God are grace and hope. You are the everlasting light that shines in the darkness. Please, Lord, I ask a blessing upon my family allow them to be faithful, allow them to hope in you to place you first and most of all Lord, allow me to release them into your hands. In the same way, you gave your spirit at your death on the cross to the heavenly Father – we release our hopes, our desires our wants and our dreams to you. Please hear my prayers for those I now pray … and I pray this in Jesus, precious and righteous Name. Amen.

 

Fasting

Fasting | Fasting has never been anything I’ve enjoyed and probably the experience is the same for you. However, it can be redemptive and help us to put into perspective God’s holy will for our lives. | #podcast #christianpodcast #fastingFasting – Episode 114

Fasting has never been anything I’ve enjoyed and probably the experience is the same for you. However, it can be redemptive and help us to put into perspective God’s holy will for our lives.

Thanks to our sponsor: Media Angels.com and Felice Gerwitz on Amazon

Does anyone even fast anymore? That is a question I wonder and ask. As a Catholic, I grew up fasting from meat every Friday. We ate other foods and often they were equally delicious. To this day during the season of Lent, we hold strictly to the no meat rule. For some it is easy and for others, it is not.

Fasting isn’t easy – it isn’t fun and most avoid it or have never fasted in their lives.

Why fast? Well, even Jesus fasted before he began his public ministry and for forty-days. And during this time he was tempted by Satan. Interestingly, Satan used words from Scriptures to make his point and Matthew 4:1-11

Here are some points to consider:

  1. Health benefits
  2. Helps us to remind us to conform to God’s will (why this is important)
  3. To no longer live for himself but for him who loves him and gave himself to us
  4. Unity of the whole person body and should
  5. Helps us to avoid sin
  6. Grow in intimacy with the Lord
  7. Bible talks about fasting
    1. Ester: 4:3
    2. Psalm 35: 13
    3. Daniel 6:16-18
    4. Matthew 17:21 – “But this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”
    5. Acts 13:20

By not eating or denying ourselves nourishment (not drinking coffee, fasting from meat, or having only water, or only bread and water) we allow our souls to be in a position where we are open to listening to Christ to be fed by his saving word. Through fasting in prayer, we become open – we have a hunger that goes beyond food or drink, a hunger to understand and know more about the Almighty. If we fast with the right mindset and heart then it can as the Bible tells us over and over again, be a benefit for us spiritually.

I invite you to try to fast. If you can’t fast from food all day, then fast from a specific thing or fast part of the day, but whatever you do, do it for the glory of God!

Let’s pray:

Dear Lord, I thank you for today and for allowing me to recognize the importance of fasting to get closer to you and I pray for all those who are hurting, all those who cry out to you and need you today Lord. I intercede on their behalf. Teach me how to fast in a way that will help me to understand and love you more. I want to grow in my faith. Dear Lord, I ask specifically for these needs that I have today: and I thank you Lord for being here for me, for listening and for the gift of faith. And, I pray this in Jesus, Name. Amen.

 

 

Humor and Speaking Meet Tina Levene

Humor and Speaking | Are you funny? Do you use humor and speaking as a combination that helps your audience engage and become captivated with your teaching or subject? | #podcast #christianpodcast #tinalevene Humor and Speaking Meet Tina Levene ~ Episode 19

Are you funny? Do you use humor and speaking as a combination that helps your audience engage and become captivated with your teaching or subject? Today a special guest, author, and featured speaker at the Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference, Tina Levene shares her secrets with you!

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels host of the Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference.

Tina Levene is a survivor! She had a traumatic childhood and has learned resiliency and strength that only can be attributed to God and her faith! She shares that after she became sober and clean in college at twenty-three years old from alcohol and drugs, she had a spiritual awakening. She believes God saved me her from money situations, nightmares, etc. and realized the love of God.

She has put all that energy into her ministry that has been active for twenty-one years! Tina is the author of five book and is passionate about encouraging others to succeed. In 2012 she started writing and journaling on scraps of paper and this ended up in her first book. Her friend, a Christian publisher encouraged her and gave her “permission to write a book” and said he was gonna publish it!

It took fourteen years to actually sit down to write this book–actually I wrote it within a couple of months and it was published.  It was really Holy spirit driven. Tina has a great sense of humor that is very clean, and she transferred all of those gifts into her ministry. She is also an inspirational speaker. Learn how she uses her sense of humor and speaking to motivate women!

Connect with Tina Levene

Here is a complete list of Tina’s topics on the conference website here.

Tina is a featured speaker for the Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference and she is going to talk about: How to energize any audience engagement or moment.

Humor and Speaking

Here are some of the points I speak about with Tina, and she is an expert on humor and speaking.

  1. Tina loves to make people smile and laugh.
  2. Takes coordination to organize those faults and the visions because comedy is it.
  3. Her speaking is a ministry.
  4. Audience participation.
  5. Something the audience needs to hear
  6. Humor heals
  7. Allow the audience to loosen up and have a good time
  8. Audience engagement
  9. Inspires and empowers the audience
  10. Gives them the tools they need
  11. Helps them to read the audience when they are speaking

Tina will teach some of the elements to using your own brand or sense of humor and speaking to engage the audience.

 

Abundant Harvest

Autumn Harvest | God’s beautiful abundant harvest makes me think that God saved us from death. In this episode, we will discuss God’s mercy and his endless forgiveness for our sins. #podcast #christianpodcastAutumn Harvest God Saved Us From Death  113

God’s beautiful abundant harvest makes me think that God saved us from death. In this episode, we will discuss God’s mercy and his endless forgiveness for our sins.

Thanks to our sponsor: Media Angels.com and Felice Gerwitz on Amazon

When we think of the harvest we think of all the beauty of the leaves, the produce, the fruit. But the harvest means that the leaves have died. The fruit has matured and will not live but be eaten and really while it is beautiful and fulfilling to us – sometimes we don’t realize the sacrifice that happens for us the saving power of God.

God is rich in mercy, we hear this over and over again. By grace, we are saved (SCRIPTURE). In his ultimate mercy God died for us and raised from the dead to leave this world for His true home and ours. Heaven. Read Ephesians 2:8-10

For by grace we are saved through faith – and not from us but from the gift that God gave us – not from works so we might boast but by the handiwork created by God! Lord uses us to plant seeds – but He is the one who harvests.

What does abundant harvest mean to us?

Joy – love – excitement – gifts from God! How can we not shout from the windows of our cars as we are driving by in excitement? Friends we have been adopted into a family of God, during this time of abundant harvest we can look at a world that is in dire need of a Savior a world that is hurting, that is divided were just wearing a hat can set people on edge. Our world needs healing! God saved us from death!

Colossians in a letter to St. Paul – … Spiritual Fullness in Christ  — Colossians 6:-9

We do not need to fear – the battle is not ours to fight. This time of harvest reminds us of this that in death there is the resurrection.

When is the last time you read the Psalms? Listen to Psalm 145 – Read all of it and meditate on the words.

So during this time of harvest let’s keep our eyes upon the Lord and remember his compassion for us – that he is trustworthy in his promises and faithful and he will uphold us – all of us who fall. Let’s pray.

Lord, thank you for this time of harvest and for the beauty of the world you created. Thank you for looking upon me kindly even in the times when what I do is not pleasing to you. I pray for all those ordained that they follow your holy will for their lives and please bring any stray sheep back to the fold. Thank you for your compassion, your promises and for the splendor of your kingdom, I have so much to look forward to. As I continue to live my life allow me to see your kingdom, to see your compassion to see your promises and I ask Lord that you hear the prayers I pray now …And, I pray this in Jesus, Name. Amen.

Mega Planning

Holiday Planning | Ready to get your life organized, it is time for mega planning. It is a season of joy, no matter what time of the year, but more so near the holidays. With this season comes stress! One of the best ways to relieve stress is to plan...| #podcast #christianpodcast #holidayplanningSeason of Joy! Mega Planning ~ Episode 24

Ready to get your life organized, it is time for mega planning. It is a season of joy, no matter what time of the year, but more so near the holidays. With this season comes stress! One of the best ways to relieve stress is to plan and get ahead of your busy schedule. In this episode, we will look at to organize your time so you have more time for your family.

Thanks to our sponsor —

We can not get back the time we do not spend with our kids. If we have the cleanest home or the best meals and find we are not spending time with our kids then the question to ask yourself is what is more important. Let’s begin with those questions first:

  1. I am a planner? Yes or No?
  2. I have a daily check-off list and prepare it the night before.
  3. At the end of the day, I am happiest when_________.
  4. If I do not complete this one task I feel like I have not accomplished much _________.
  5. I put my husband and kids first: A. All the time   B. Most of the time. C. After I finish my to-do list. D. Sadly I don’t.

Look over those questions and think about it. I don’t believe anyone purposely neglects their family to have a clean house or get the laundry done, but I have been guilty of allowing the kids to watch a movie so that I could get things completed when they were younger. My kids never took the long naps other moms talked about, and often I would clean up and they would proceed to mess up the house again. So, how do you stay ahead?

With prayer. Prayer is the one force in my life that I can say has kept me solidly balanced. It is the one thing that is first on my to-do list, especially now that my kids are older. However, in this simple planner, I want to share with you that I created, you will find you can easily organize your life with one sheet of paper.

I like to see a year at a glance.  Mega planning begins with an overview. What dates can you fill-in?

  1. Birthdays
  2. Major holidays – will you plan to take time off?
  3. Special days such as Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Independence Day, etc.
  4. Vacations or Family Plans such as family reunions, anniversaries, etc.
  5. School dates and vacations

You can do this online in a free calendar that is provided by Gmail – or perhaps on your phone – or better yet, synch the too.

Once you have an overview of your year you can look at each month. My printed calendar is a month at a glance. I first look at a monthly planner and place all of the important dates on the calendar.

Place the following on your calendar:

  1. Church and events.
  2. Any dates for appointments that are upcoming.
  3. Kids schedule – any events, sports, lessons
  4. Date night (yes! plan it even if it is at home)
  5. Household

Four Square Planner – Mega Planning Fine Tuned:

Once you get your overview laid out you can begin fine-tuning the day. One of the quickest ways to do this is with the Four Square Planner. I love to take a piece of paper and divide it in four.  Faith | Kids | School | Household

Take each one of these to quickly make plans for the day.

  1. Faith: Under faith, list ways that you pray, read the Bible, go to church, etc.
  2. Kids: Under kids list things they have to do that day. Chores, lessons, etc.
  3. School: Times, what needs to be done?
  4. Household: Groceries, meals, cleaning, shopping?

Here is a sample and a blank to give you an idea of how to use it: 4-Square-Planner-MediaAngelsInc.

You can add to your main 4-square planner day to day if you do not have many things going on or actually use one for each day. It is the way I plan birthday parties, kids sporting events, the podcasts I record, and more! It is also the way I plan my mega shopping or mega cooking days. I consolidate to a date and time so that I am not overwhelmed.

If you can do this your life will be so much easier! It puts your to-do list in priorities. In fact, one of my friends calls this the priority planner! It is wonderful and so helpful. It is the way I keep my life organized. I hope it helps you in your life as well!

Successful Blogging and Marketing Meet Jimmie Quick

Successful Blogging and Marketing | Do you want successful blogging and marketing advice? In this episode, we take a look at what it takes to be a success in regard to your online presence with a featured conference speaker, Jimmie Quick, and Felice Gerwitz | #podcast #wahm #blogging #christianpodcastSuccess Blogging & Marketing with Felice Gerwitz and Jimmie Quick Episode 17

Do you want successful blogging and marketing advice? In this episode, we take a look at what it takes to be a success in regard to your online presence with a featured conference speaker, Jimmie Quick, and Felice Gerwitz

Thanks to our sponsor — The Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference 

Jimmie Quick began as a blogger. She was a stay-at-home mom who was homeschooling my daughter. She was living abroad and serving as a missionary in Asia. She had just started blogging and over time it grew and grew and grew. When her daughter was in high school  pretty much an independent learner, I was making a full-time income, working full time from home, doing marketing in the homeschool niche. She is very thankful for being able to work at home and help companies that I really believe in. I believe

Here are Jimmie Quick’s Featured Conference Topics.

Successful Blogging and Marketing Begins with a Blog

Jimmie shares that so many people that begin to share their message with the world start with blogging because it is a low cost platform.

  1. It’s a great way to extend your reach.
  2. It’s for people who love to write and would like to do it daily
  3. Even if you have begin small there is always room for improvement.
  4. Blogging allows you to have an audience.
  5. It can begin with your life experiences.
  6. Remember to connect with your audience.

Marketing:

  1. The language of blogging is also what slows people down.
  2. Understand the anatomy of a perfect blog.
  3. Understand SEO (search engine optimization)
  4. It is important to understand social media. The key ones for bloggers are Pinterest, Facebook and other social media platforms.
  5. Learn how to use email marketing.
  6. Keep an editorial calendar.
  7. Weekly posting is the minimum for a blog.
  8. Outline with purpose. Not just random ideas but a deliberate plan based upon keywords that you want to be found for in a search.

 

The Power of Email Marketing

Email marketing is important and Jimmie will discuss leveraging the power of email marketing.

  1. Get a vision for building and then nurturing a list and then what to do with those people.
  2. The secret sauce of this talk is going to be auto-responders. Some people call them drip campaigns.
  3. The importance of follow-up
  4. A subscriber is like “milk” not “yogurt.”

It takes a mind shift that a lot of people, especially Christians really struggle with because they don’t want to appear pushy. They don’t want to be salesy, but yet they have a business, they want to sell something, they want to reach the world with their message and they know that the worker is worthy of his wages and they want to get paid for this thing, but they are afraid to ask for money. They’re afraid to put a price on it. And, and the, so it’s really these issues about money and value and being pushy and being salesy. So we’re going to really delve into that and see why. If you have a message that you need to be, you need to push through your fear of being, pushing it, pushy and you need to get it out there. You are not harming people or offending them.

It is a mind shift and I think you know, once you grabbed onto these principles and you really absorb them and then you just start looking at your ministry slash business through these lenses everything becomes clear, the path becomes clear and you understand, ah, this is what I need to do next. And hopefully, that’s what all of the attendees at this convention conference are going to leave with. You know, a clear vision of these are the next steps I need to take.

 

Salvation History & You

Salvation History | Have we considered salvation history in the light of not only what Jesus did for humanity but what Jesus did directly for us? In this episode, we will learn how to apply this to our lives and others. | #podcast #christianpodcast #salvationhistorySalvation History and You Episode 112

Have we considered salvation history in the light of not only what Jesus did for humanity but what Jesus did directly for us? In this episode, we will learn how to apply this to our lives and others.

Thanks to our sponsor: Media Angels.com and Felice Gerwitz on Amazon

The Bible consists of the Old and the New Testament. The first book of the Bible begins in Genesis and ends in Revelations. It is the behind the scenes look at the new heaven and the new earth and at the apex or the center is Christ. This is a story of love – the greatest love of all, the love of God for a humanity that He created, that is fallen. It is the story of God’s promise before Jesus came and about Jesus fulfilling the promise by his life, his death, and His ultimate Resurrection.

Simply put, the salvation of history is the storyline of the beginning of time, the creation of man and the redemption by God. The Bible is this intricate puzzle with many books that seem to be unrelated yet overall paint this amazing picture of our history and God.
When we read the Bible we get a glimpse into the lives of the saints that lived before us, the tragedy and the triumph. It really happened. It isn’t an allegory, a theory or a fluff piece. It is real.

Before God created the world He existed. The Father. The Son. The Spirit. For us it is difficult to imagine an always was – always is and always will be because we are finite people.
And before

History is His – Story, the story of a God who was not made, not created, but who always was and will always be. This amazing creator God wanted to enjoy the universe he created with us. He began our story with our first parents, Adam and Eve.

Before the fall we read a wonderful, idyllic story of our ancestors that lived in this beautiful garden with everything they wanted or needed provided. This was how God planned it. No toil, no sin, no problems.

God created the angels before our first parents – and we learn about their sin in Revelations:

And there was a great battle in heaven, Michael and his angels fought with the dragon, and the dragon fought and his angels: and they prevailed not, neither was their place found any more in heaven. And that great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, who seduceth the whole world; and he was cast unto the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. (Apocalypse 12:7-9)

We know the story, our first parents sinned and were banned from the garden, from that idyllic place because they were tempted by the devil or Satan. The punishment from God to the enemy was swift yet he did not find mercy from God, but man did. Read 2 Peter 2:4

We do not know the mind of God – from paradise on earth, our parents were condemned. The need for a Savior was born.  Read Genesis 3:15. Then the trouble began and continued throughout history to this present moment and we still need a Savior!

God has not deserted us – God is active in our lives, each and every day. It is the mission of you, of me, of the CHurch to
The history of salvation leads us to be disciples, and bring others the gospel message.

We must understand the beginning to realize the end.

Salvation history forces us to look at the actions of those who went before us, the story of God’s people from God’s point of view. God’s word tells us all about the way he time and again saved the people who cried out to Him.  Do we cry out to God for saving? And if we do, how do we apply what we know not only to our lives but the lives of others? Are we a witness not by word, but by deed? If not we should be.

Let’s pray:

Dear God Almighty the Creator of Heaven and Earth, we thank you for sharing the story of how the world came to be and the history of your people through your point of view. I thank you, God, for giving us this world in which to live, for our family, for our friends, and for those who we will meet in the future. Let us be an example of your kindness, your love, your peace, and your joy. Let us learn from the holy men and women who went before us as well as those who turned their backs on you. Please keep us free from the temptations of the evil one and keep us in your holy mantle of protection. Dear God Almighty we pray for the following:  …  Please hear our prayers and grant them if they are in your Divine Will. I praise you for all you have done in my life and I thank you until I draw my last breath. And, I pray this in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen.

 

 

 

Conference Speaker Meet Meredith Curtis

Conference Speaker | Meredith Curtis attended a conference where I was a featured conference speaker. She had dreams of becoming a published author! Fast forward many years later and not only did Meredith realize her dream, but she also is a speaker herself! | #podcast #christianpodcast #becomeaspeakerConference Speaker – Meet Meredith Curtis Episode 16

Meredith Curtis attended a conference where I was a featured conference speaker. She had dreams of becoming a published author! Fast forward many years later and not only did Meredith realize her dream, but she also is a speaker herself!  In this episode learn what it takes to become a speaker!

Thanks to our sponsor the Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference – visit the website here.

Many authors would love to be a conference speaker. How does an organizer select the best speakers? It is a matter of the needs of the conference but also the information the speaker submits. If you want to attend an amazing conference sure to bring your business to the next level, listen to this show.

Meredith attended a conference seminar on writing and publishing. Her daughters brought her by my booth to introduce me to her and she purchased my book. She was so excited about writing her own curriculum that she used for her own children and others. The talk inspired her to begin her own company, Powerline Productions and print her own books! Not only that–but she hosted her own Finish Well Conferences for teens for years in her area.

When I was planning my Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference I asked several people I knew to submit talks they would like to present, and Meredith’s ideas really resonated with me.

Conference Speaker Sessions: Here are Meredith’s Sessions

  1. Prepare Your Heart to Run A Business: The first is as a believer in Jesus, she wants to do it for His glory, and it all begins with what does the Bible says about running a business. The Bible has so much to say about serving others, managing money and even investing, which really is what a business is investing for profit. I talk about how we applied Biblical wisdom to our business and also how we do that in our home. Because our home, is not a country club or an organization, it’s home.
  2. God’s Wisdom For Running A Business: Meredith ended up writing a book on Economics  to teach others about the economic cycle, and understand when to expand your business, grow it and thrive. And then there are times when the economy slows so you need to pull back, and your sales may go down. Things become more difficult and you can use that to your advantage to streamline, to cut waste and trim excess until you are ready to start expanding again. This allows you to save money for even more growth.
  3. Running A Business Debt Free: The Bible says do not despise the day of small beginnings. And I think that’s an important principle when you’re thinking about starting a business because you just start with what you have and what you can afford to spend. One of the principles is to put aside money for your next expenses and you have to think longterm instead of short term. Meredith will be sharing the seven keys to running a business debt-free at the Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference. 

Meredith and her worship team will be playing live during the conference and be on hand to pray for the attendees–if anyone would like prayers.

This conference is happening because we want to support you and your calling, whether it is to write a book, speak at a conference, have your own podcast, be a consultant or coach for others or travel the world in ministry. Whatever that is, we are here! All are welcome!

 

 

Faith Journey

Faith Journey | Each of us comes from a different place in our walk with God, but our faith journey typically has some of the same factors. In this episode, we discuss ways to grow in faith. | #podcast #christianpodcast #faithFaith Journey Episode 111

Each of us comes from a different place in our walk with God, but our faith journey typically has some of the same factors. In this episode, we discuss ways to grow in faith.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, and the books and here on Amazon.

Do you have a favorite book? A favorite chair? A favorite television program? What about a favorite song? If you think about it, I’m sure you could answer every single question, but if I asked you the same thing five years ago, the answers might be different. Our solutions change as we change. And, so it is with our faith. Our faith can grow, especially at the beginning when we are excited to learn everything we can, we can’t wait to read the Bible and soak up the Word of God, we love to pray, and we find many of our prayers are answered. It is a time when everything seems glorious, and it is often called the honeymoon period, because similar to a young marriage, everything is bright, new, wonderful, and we are in love! We are in love with Jesus.

Has your relationship with the Lord gotten comfortable? Is it like a favorite recliner or chair? It molds and fits you, but it isn’t the same as when it was new? If we do not work on our relationship even with the Lord, it can stagnate and even in some cases, slide and go backward. We hear of people who lose their faith or their way, and some we might know that we’re on fire for the Lord. Maybe they were preachers or wrote books or even were pretty famous. What happened to them? What made them go from hot to cold?

Yes, life happens, but I believe the same way we nurture a relationship with people we love, we must nurture our relationship with the Lord. So, here are some questions I want you to ask yourself.

  1. Do you become excited when considering reading the Bible, or is it something you do to check off the daily list?
  2. Same question about prayer… excited or just a check in a box?
  3. Same question about quiet time before the Lord.
  4. Same question about attending church.
  5. Same question about your relationship with God.

How do you grow in the Lord without it looking like a to-do list that is done each day out of obligation? Ahh… here it is the real question. The real question is do you know Jesus? Do you know Him? Who is He? Who does He say that He is? If we know Jesus as He knows himself to be (as my pastor says) and love Jesus as He knows Himself to be, then we can’t help but grow in the Lord.

The reality is that life happens, and we get busy, sidetracked, and find that we are spinning our wheels when it comes to faith. Sure, maybe you are well-meaning — I know I am, but I have to admit that I do have a little bit of that “check-off-the-box” mentality. I’m super happy if I make it to Mass each day if I pray on the way and stay in church a little while after to pray some more if I think about God in the car on the way home or play some praise and worship music. But you know what? It doesn’t matter. God knows our hearts!

Today I was joyous. I mean giddy, exicted happy…joyous! And I asked God why. “Why Lord am I feeling so happy?” and I felt the answer was …”No reason, because I love you.”

Friends, we don’t do any of these things for God – we do them for ourselves to grow in our love for the Lord. If you are taking a step, even if it is a tiny step in the direction toward God, that is great! It is wonderful! It is the ideal for you today. Remember, guilt is not from the Lord. It is from the enemy that wants to keep us down.

Does this mean you don’t have to learn, spend time with God, read the Bible, listen to spiritual and uplifting music that praises God? No – of course, you can, but you don’t have to! Your faith journey is unique to you! Your faith journey is your relationship with God. Your faith journey is learning and growing and spending time with the Almighty, the King of Heaven and Earth, the King of Kings the Lord of Lords! Who doesn’t want to know more about Him? Who doesn’t want to shout “Jesus Reigns” from the car as we drive by unsuspecting motorists? Yeah, okay – that may be a bit weird, but you get my point.

If you search for the word “faith journey” in any Bible app nothing is going to come up. It is not in Scripture. But, if you search for faith -it shows up 378 times and, the verse that speaks to me is Hebrews 11.

Hebrews 11:1-8 … Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen…(use your Bibles to read more, or go here).

Friends, our journey toward God can be steady and slow, as long as we are moving forward. It is in those times when we pause or outright stop that the enemy can and does attack us. It is in those times that we feel despair and cry out to God, “Do you even hear me?” … yet, I assure you He does. He is here with arms open willing us to walk toward him.

Let’s Pray:

Dear Heavenly Father, thank-you for the gift of faith for it truly is a gift. Please allow us to have the faith of Noah, who built an ark because you commanded it, and the faith of Moses who lead the chosen people out of Egypt, and the faith of all the holy men and women who have gone on before us. Dear Father, give us the faith of the thief on the cross who knew He was a sinner and unworthy of the kingdom, but asked anyway. Please help us in our faith journey to walk ever closer to you, be beside me, Lord for those times I falter and fall. Be beside me, Lord, for those times that I do not know what to say to those who hurt me. Be beside me, Lord and, help me to put one foot in front of the other and continue walking, praying, studying, and listening … please, Lord, hear the prayer I ask for this day… let me grow ever closer to you, and I pray this in Jesus’s Name. Amen.

Season of Hope

Season of Hope | Five Sure Fire Ways To Avoid Stress | We are approaching a season of hope! Here are five things to really help you to reduce the stress, make a quick plan and get rid of those things that cause you to feel overwhelmed. Get ready to enjoy any season, with these five easy to answer questions. | #podcast #holidaystress #holidayplanning #christianpodcastSeason of Hope Episode 23

We are approaching a season of hope! Here are five things to really help you to reduce the stress, make a quick plan and get rid of those things that cause you to feel overwhelmed. Get ready to enjoy any season, with these five easy to answer questions.

I was never a big planner until I got older, and the reason was self-preservation. I would just plain forget if I did not plan things out. The older my children were the more planning that was necessary, in fact during the phase of sports we had a shared digital calendar so we could plan family events around their sports schedule. Sound familiar? Maybe you kids don’t play sports but have other lessons to attend, and once again the family is pushed in this direction or that.

Then, when you turn the calendar there is a collective gasp as you realize we are in the countdown mode – the countdown to Thanksgiving or Christmas. So, then what happens? Panic.

We can choose to be joyful, but that is harder to do when we are up to our eyeballs in meals, laundry, and kids. We can play praise and worship music (that always makes me happy) – or we can just pray our way through the day.

I have some experience at parenting…my oldest was born in 1980, and I have five kids. So, if you do the math I will be logging in 40 years of parenting and still going as of 2020! So, in my experience, I have learned to examine my stress factors that take away my hope and my peace.

Ways To Combat Holiday Stress! Remember this is the Season of Hope!

  1. What is making me stressed – write these down.
  2. What things on my list can I cross out?
  3. What things on my list can I delegate?
  4. What things on my list can I do today?
  5. What things on my list can I do – and here is the date/due by.

Do I have a plan? The next podcast will be about planning and how you can make any holiday, event, and schedule in a way that is manageable.

Recently I saw a preview of the upcoming Mr. Rogers movie – A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, and I cannot share details but let me say it is a life-changing movie. I will share more about things I learned (without any spoiler alerts) in upcoming episodes as well – so be sure you subscribe to this podcast to receive new shows.

Through the struggles of the characters, we learned nuggets about life. And, truthfully our hope is not in the things of this world – our hope is in the things that truly matter.

List those – what are those things that truly matter to you? Take a few minutes to do this now, or plan a time later this evening before bed, or when you wake up in the morning or at lunchtime… but do it!

For each one of us, those things look different depending on our station in life! I remember as a young mom thinking that just a few minutes of quiet, or getting the laundry washed, folded and put away in one day was important. Now that my kids are grown, the house is quiet and you guessed it – I can do many loads of laundry in one day and get it put away! Those things are no longer important.

Upcoming is a season of hope – Thanksgiving is coming, then Christmas. It is a time of fall harvest, going to visit a pumpkin patch, enjoying fall leaves (think of me when you do it is the only thing I miss about living up north), or sipping apple cider, or hot chocolate while bundled in a blanket watching a campfire. These things are special, the upcoming celebration of the birth of Christ is special – these things bring us joy they bring us hope and they lift up our faith.

Friends, be sure to look at this season of hope and take the time to stop and enjoy the sights, smells, and sounds of the season. Take time with your family, snuggle up with a good book, and be sure to tell those you love how thankful you are of them!

Next week mega planning! Be ready.

 

God’s Timing

God's Timing | God's timing is perfect, this is something we hear about all the time but in reality, when we ask something in prayer we often expect immediate results. In this podcast, we discuss how our time is so different to God's time and ways to let go! | #podcast #christianpodcastGod’s Timing – Episode 110

God’s timing is perfect, this is something we hear about all the time but in reality, when we ask something in prayer we often expect immediate results. In this podcast, we discuss how our time is so different from God’s time and ways to let go!

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child. You can find more information about both titles on Media Angels or Amazon.

We are a society of immediate gratification. We don’t have to haul our water in from the well or farm our own food or any of the things that in the not so recent past our ancestors had to do. My own parents had a garden, and I grow herbs – okay, not quite the same thing, but I buy a plant and plant it – I don’t even use a seed!

So why does it surprise us that when we pray to God we want instant answers? God’s timing is not our timing and His timing is perfect! Yet we lack patience, faith, hope, and we become anxious! How does this happen?

There is a reason our prayers do not have an instant answer. What is it – I don’t know. I’m sure the reason is different for each one of us. Our job is to keep focused, continue to pray and to read your Bible! Stay grounded in God’s Word.

When we become anxious and stressed over God’s timing it is usually because we want the Lord to answer a prayer about a difficult situation or perhaps we are ill and want to be healed. Believe me, I get it!

Does God not know about your situation? Does he not understand. Of course, he does.

Psalm 18: 20 As for God, His way is blameless.

Psalm 31:14-15

We must surrender our needs to him, and we can learn through the waiting. Sometimes the lessons we learn are so much more effective in growing our faith!

Jesus Stills the Sea  —  Mark 4:35-41

Can you imagine what the apostles learned from the calming of the sea? I have a picture in my living room to the right of the TV that depicts this Scripture verse. It is a reminder to wait on Him – on His timing.

And, I want to leave you with a thought. As we are waiting for the perfect timing for the answer to our prayers, please let’s not forget to be thankful in all the prayers He has answered. Take out your praise and thanksgiving journal and write in it — go back and read it, see? He has answered prayers in His perfect time.

Let’s Pray

Dear Lord, Your timing is perfect. I know that you have everything in the palm of your hand. That you know the time and place of everything that we worry and stress about, and I ask that you help to let to go and let God into my life in a deeper way. Thank you for fulfilling all of my needs. Thank you for giving me my daily bread. Thank you for giving me the very things I need, just when I need them. You are the God of perfection and I ask you to allow me to rest in You. Thank you for providing for all I pray for today … I know you have the perfect time to answer all of these prayers, and I pray this in Jesus Name. Amen.

Attending Conferences

Conferences | With so much information online should you attend an "in person" conferences? In this episode, Felice Gerwitz shares how a recent and past conferences have taught her so much she can implement today. | #podcast #writingandpublishing #conferencesFive Tips For Getting The Most Our of Attending Conferences – Episode 13

With so much information online should you attend an “in-person” conferences? In this episode, Felice Gerwitz shares how a recent and past conferences have taught her so much she can implement today.

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels host of the Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference.

I’ve attended many conferences in my life, upwards of fifty, and at some of these, I was a featured speaker. However, in all of that time, I realized, when I was an attendee that I didn’t have a working plan of what I expected to get out of the conference. How many of you have attended a conference or even a meeting and didn’t even have paper? Maybe you thought it would be provided, maybe you thought you could borrow some, yet do you realize that is a subliminal message (to yourself) that you are not there to learn.

Are you teachable? I’ve met some people that are smart intellectually and think they can figure it out or have all the information they need, perhaps you’ve met people who do not take feedback to heart.

Just this week I attended a conference and truthfully I wasn’t attending it to learn, but to meet people and to see how this conference was run. And, I left pleasantly surprised. First, let me back up – I am pretty teachable. I love to learn and I am what I call a perpetual student. I read science abstracts if I want to learn something about a particular discovery or a study that was done, I interview people who are knowledgable in an area I think my listeners could benefit, and I am … well, a student.

So, while I wasn’t attending *not* to learn, I started off the morning sessions with a small notepad I keep in my person instead of my laptop or spiral notebook I had in the car. I listened and it wasn’t until about forty-five minutes into the sessions that I started to take notes – jotting down ideas, shaking my head and agreeing or being sparked to think of something to do later – an action point. I did go to the car after the lunch break to get my notebook to take notes. If you haven’t listened to my podcast on making connections listen to this here.

And, that is what I want to talk to you about today, how to attend a conference, a meeting or even a webinar and get the most out of it! The conference I attended was particularly for speakers but it extended to people in business, sales-people, real-estate, authors, investors, etc. One of the comments on the website before attending was to dress your best (the mantra: “dress for success”) and I decided on a lace top with one of my nicest pair of linen pants, matching purse, pearls and other jewelry. Understated but elegant. As expected, some people were in business suits, others looked nice but not dressed up. But, this request to dress up set the tone that this was serious and worthwhile.

Here are Five Tips to getting the most out of conferences.

  1. Plan to be dressed up, not over-the-top — but professional – for yourself and your mindset/ outlook more so than for others. (tell about the lady with red hair)
  2. Plan to take notes – if you have this mindset you are planning to learn. After the conference type up the notes, review action points and plan when you will implement these things.
  3. Make action points. As you take notes think about some things you can implement, even if not in the immediate future. (Box)
  4. Bring business cards. This is a must. Try to meet as many new people as possible and get their cards as well. Or, have a pad and ask for their name and email – keep in contact.
  5. Meet the organizers, thank them and be sure to complement when warranted.

One other thought – not necessarily in my top five. I am an impulse buyer. I know this about myself. I decided before attending that I would not purchase anything. Not a book, not a class on DVD and not a private consultation or even learning retreat. That doesn’t mean I won’t do this in the future, just not right now. Why? Because of my time constraints. I know myself and I know when I can and can not do one more thing. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go with an idea of buying. It just means to know before you attend what you plan to do!

Some of my action plans after attending this and other conferences:

  1. Create a how-to-podcast self-paced class.
  2. Create an ebook that I will first sell, and then give away as a freebie on my website.
  3. Create several marketing videos for my upcoming Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference

So, friends, I hope this has inspired you to really listen and be ready to learn when you attend a conference, webinar or even, perhaps listening to an inspiring podcast that to get the most you need to have an attitude of learning!

 

 

 

Christian Hope

Christian Hope | What is the difference between hope and Christian hope? Do we hope in what we want, or do we hope in God's will for our life? We explore this theme today. | #podcast #christianpodcastChristian Hope – Episode 109

What is the difference between hope and Christian hope? Do we hope in what we want, or do we hope in God’s will for our life? We explore this theme today.

Hope in Christ – it is already accomplished – God’s will has been done, it is finished. So we can go on with our lives and not worry about anything. Don’t you wish it were that easy?

Our hope is that our “will be done” that God answers our prayers the way we want our outcome to be. Just think about this – it is humbling. We “hope” things go our way.

The Garden of Gethsemane – Matthew 26:36-46

How do we hope in a seemingly hopeless world? How do we hope when we are depressed – lonely – or feel abandoned?

Some pastors teach that if we pray it – believe it – it will come. And if the prayers are not answered, we then lose hope and think the Lord has abandoned us!

Christian Hope – is different. While we hope for the Lord’s will in my life – yet not as I will, but as You will.”  We still hope for the best possible outcome.

As I record this it is 9-11 and it is a horrific time in American history when we had a terrorist attack on American soil. As I listened to reports of what was expected in the death toll from the Twin Towers, the estimates for 14-15K because of the number of people believed to be in the building.

One death is too many, but the numbers were way, way less than was predicted. We read so many miracle stories. We see the hand of God, we see that even those who went to rescue the fallen were never the same.

Yet we continue to believe. We continue to hope.

We read in Psalm 121. 

Romans 8:24-25

We don’t know the answers, but … we read in Isaiah 38:18 New International Version (NIV)

For the grave cannot praise you, death cannot sing your praise; those who go down to the pit cannot hope for your faithfulness.

Yet then we read in Lamentations 3:17-20 New International Version (NIV)

Romans 8:23-30

Christian hope is when we read about what God has promised within the pages of the Bible—within the knowledge that God is never changing, within the trust that God never lies—His word is inspired, true and without error.

1 Peter 1:13-16

Let’s Pray!

Lord thank you for Christian hope and the knowledge that when we trust in you our trust is secure, we are confident you hear our prayers and you will answer them according to Your will for our lives. We know we will mess up and only you are holy and worthy of every good thing, yet we love you Lord and we do hope in you. where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth and I am glad and praise Your Name for this promise. Dear Lord, please hear the prayers we ask now and those in our hearts… and I pray this in the hope that is in Christ. Amen.

OverStimulated Christians

Overstimulated Christians | Christian information is everywhere, on our phones, on television and the radio and we become overstimulated Christians! In this episode, we will look at our relationship with God | #podcast #christianpodcastOverstimulated Christians – Episode 108

Christian information is everywhere, on our phones, on television and the radio and we become overstimulated Christians! In this episode, we will look at our relationship with God, and how to in doing things to get closer we sometimes end up being further away.

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child. You can find more information about both titles on Media Angels or Amazon.

We get information everywhere, everyone has a blog, a book, a podcast. In addition each day:

  1. We have our devotions
  2. Our prayers
  3. Our prayer books
  4. We pray at church

Do we do the right things but do they feed our soul? Think about that? This thought hit me hard. Each morning I like to go to Mass if I can and on the way there, I will pray, then at church I pray, then after church on the way home I will pray. Sometimes I listen to praise and worship music, which really does bring me joy. And, by the time I get home around 8:30 I feel pretty good, but am I feeling good because I’ve spent time with God or because of what I did?

Many times we do things to check them off the list. Not consciously – I do them because I want to spend time with God, but at times I do think I’m heading at least on the right path. However, it is always good to look at our motives.

But the question is are you doing your “devotions” or are you “devoted to God?”

  1. Spend time in the Word but meditate on the words.
  2. God talks to us in The Bible
  3. God’s word is a two-edged sword

Hebrews 4:12 [Full Chapter]
For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

Psalm 149:6 May the praise of God be in their mouths and a double-edged sword in their hands,

We can do a quick check on our motivation for learning and filling our lives with good things, but maybe not the best things God has for us.

  1. How do you feel after praying? Are you elated or stressed because you’ve put other important things off. If you are elated – good, right path if you are stressed… look at your motivation.
  2. Do you pray because you want to spend time with God or because you feel you have to?
  3. Spend a few minutes analyzing your motivation.

This was a wake-up call to me – I tend to get over-committed and oversaturated in trying to learn all that I can, and sometimes the quiet, the time listening to God or being still in His presence is more than I can hope for! It is what fills me and brings me joy. Joy is a decision sometimes – it is a commitment to live out our lives praising the One who created us.

We can be overcommitted even by spending too much time with friends, having to fill our days with chatter and noise with things that are not important in the grand scheme of things! Our hearts should belong to the Lord. And our time is His as well.

Let’s pray.

Dear Heavenly Father, I thank you that you open my eyes each and every day to the times I become overstimulated and overcommitted. I ask you to bring me the peace, the love and the joy that I crave. Dear Lord still my soul, allow me to feel the peace that surpasses all understanding today. Right now. This very second. Bring me the peace and the joy that I need … and allow it to permeate my life. I ask you Lord for the prayers that I now pray for those near to me or for my own special intentions … Dear Jesus thank you for clearing out the cobwebs of my mind and bringing the light that is You. In Jesus Name, Amen.

Interview Tips

Interview Tips | Do you want to be one of those guests that get invited back? Here are some interview tips to help you improve the chances of not only getting invited back but improving your reach with the podcast guests. | #podcast #writing #podcastingInterview Tips To Improve Reach ~ Episode 12

Do you want to be one of those guests that get invited back? Here are some interview tips to help you improve the chances of not only getting invited back but improving your reach with the podcast guests.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels – host of the conference, Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference, a one-of-a-kind in-person mentoring event to help you boost your writing, blogging, coaching or speaking.

Have you listened to a podcast and thought – wow, that guest is great, I want to learn more about them, I want to check out their website, follow them on Instagram or just connect with them? Well, if you have that is the sign of a great guest. A guest is someone who connects with the host and directs the conversation in a way that helps them shine.

Today I’ll share some of my interview tips to help you be a guest that people want to know.

An interview should be informative, teach the listener something and be engaging so that your expertise and personality shine. It shouldn’t be forced, hurried or rushed. It goes without saying that before you accept an interview you should be prepared and have everything you’d like to say in bullet point.

Do you know why you want the interview and what you plan to say? Do you have a list of questions from the host or did you provide them? Do you know if this is an audio, video, or if you need some type of special equipment?

I invite you to listen to the podcast, “Getting An Interview,” for more details on how to get an interview and best practices for that, but here is the list I use to prepare for interviews I’ll give on other podcasts.

I have a question for you. I actually have several questions and this is something that I would like you to think about if you want an interview.

  1. Do I know something about the show host? Have I listened to previous shows?
  2. Did the show host ask me for a topic? Is the topic I gave something that I feel passionate about and can use it to my advantage to show my expertise?
  3. If the show-host asked for a specific topic outside of my area of expertise, can I make it work, do I know enough to sound informative?
  4. Did I ask for a set of questions? If not, did I provide these questions?
  5. Do I know if I need special equipment (good headset or microphone) if it is on the computer? If it is call-in only, do I have a clear connection and good cell or land-line service?
  6. Do I have the number or website link? Do I have the software needed on my computer?
  7. Did you send a headshot or logo, and your bio?
  8. Do I have a call to action to the guests? Something that encourages them to connect with me. (Examples are given on the audio.)
  9. Do I have a book, blog or website and a link or landing page to send the listeners?

To be a guest you need to think quickly if the host throws you a question you don’t know. If it is something you can not answer here are some options that work:

  1. Thanks for that question, but truthfully it is outside of my area of expertise.
  2. I appreciate you asking, and I can email you those website links after this interview so that you can have it available for the listeners.
  3. That is a great question, and if your listeners connect with me on______ (Your website, Facebook, Instagram, etc.) I can share the answer there.

Any of these gracious replies will work!

What if the host says something negative and you disagree? (I’ve had this happen with a guest.)

  1. Interrupt as soon as you can to clarify your position.
  2. If it is not egregious, let it go.
  3. Correct the host kindly. Something like, “In my experience, I’ve found…” or “I can only respond to that statement based upon my own experience…”
  4. OR if you are the host – like I was, I edited that section out! (Explain some faux-pas from recent guests!)

One thing that a good guest will do that endears me quickly is to answer emails promptly. Sure, over the weekend may have a delayed response, but typically if a host asks for a headshot, a bio or other pertinent information and you lag behind getting it to them, it can make you appear unorganized.

That’s it! You are on your way to being a great guest using some or all of these interviewing tips! If you have something that would pertain to this particular podcast, reach out and contact me.

 

 

Authoritative Parenting

Authoritative Parenting | It's not easy to parent today, because there is a blog, a tv show or your neighbor, relative or best friend who knows of a better way. In this episode, we cut through the fluff and talk about the importance of being the parent in this time of anything goes. | #podcast #christianpodcastAuthoritative Parenting ~ Episode 22

I first heard the term, “authoritative parenting” when glancing at an article and seeing that it fit pretty closely to my parenting style. It’s not easy to parent today, because there is a blog, a tv show or your neighbor, relative or best friend who knows of a better way. In this episode, we cut through the fluff and talk about the importance of being the parent in this time of anything goes.

Thanks to our sponsor – Media Angels, Inc. visit the website for One More Child

Parenting takes time, parenting takes commitment and parenting takes backbone, but it also takes heart. Our children are precious and I believe on loan to us from the amazing Creator God! Little children tend to look up to their parents, and love unconditionally so what happens when they grow-up?

I always say that God knew what He was doing when He created teenagers, don’t get me wrong, I loved all of the teen years, but sometimes I felt like when the time came for them to leave, I’d help them pack! When your children are young you or they may have separation anxiety, our little ones want to be with us, close to us and that is normal, that is good. But all of our parenting stems around the ability to use our love for our children in a way that is healthy for now and the future.

I’ve heard friends say things like, “It’s a good thing that child number one was so easy going because if I had child number two first, I might have only had one kid!” (And that child was standing within hearing range.) Friends your kids are sponges they have eyes and ears everywhere, just like they can’t often pull one over us they same goes for them! If you are talking about a baby, then maybe the toddler is listening.

Being an authoritative parent doesn’t mean being overly strict but it also doesn’t mean being permissive. Being a parent means following through and I believe each one of us has an area we need to work on, the latter was always my area of struggle. I was what was called a threatening-repeating-parent. Do this now… if you don’t do this now you are going to be in trouble … do it RIGHT now, or else… you get the picture. If I had given instruction and gotten up when the instruction was not followed with some sort of punishment I can guarantee I would not have to repeat myself next time. Sure, it sometimes takes practice with a little one, my husband says that kids are gamblers, they gamble you won’t follow through!

Here are some tips of what I believe fits an authoritative parenting style:

  1. You are strict, but you are flexible. It isn’t my way or the highway – but it is, this is how we are going to do things in our family.
  2. Our kids know what we want them to do, there is no guessing. Bedtime is at 8, we brush our teeth first, get a drink of water, say prayers and then off to bed. Or, no snacks before mealtime. Etc.
  3. We hear them when they speak. If they want to input when we are giving instruction, we can ask them to wait until we are finished – but we hear them. What they have to say may not necessarily sway our instructions but we give them a voice. (I would say when a child argued: “Have you ever had me change my mind when you argue with me? (“No. But it should.”) I would just smile and my child would drop it or suffer the consequences.
  4. Our kids know there are consequences. Our kids learned Newton’s third law is: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.  In other words, if you mess up you will pay for it in some type of punishment and more than likely you won’t like it. (Corner-Mike)
  5. We don’t say hurtful things. Never character assassination. It is not worth it – the hate word was not permitted even among siblings.
  6. We are fair and just.
  7. We provide emotional support and love. Need to know they can count on us.
  8. We are consistent.
  9. We ask for forgiveness. Even we are wrong.

We do our best, we don’t always get it right, but we do try. Our kids need to know this, that we love them and can trust us to say what we mean and do what we say!

 

Daily Joy

Daily Joy | How do you start the day with daily joy? Some days it is easier than others, but in this podcast, I'll share ways that are helpful and will encourage you to begin with a smile. Shh! It is contagious. | #podcast #christianpodcast How do you start the day with daily joy? Some days it is easier than others, but in this podcast, I’ll share ways that are helpful and will encourage you to begin with a smile. Shh! It is contagious.

Episode 21 – Daily Joy

Thanks to our sponsor, MediaAngels.com – where you can find Christian books and classes.

Family life is hectic to say the least. Especially in families where faith takes a back seat. I’d like to say that faith is the one thing that has sustained, guided and brought me to a point where I see the Lord’s hand in everything.

God is all around us and busy moms and dads can’t see it because, well, they are busy! But here is a quick list for you to begin your day with joy a daily dose of joy… and guess what? It is contagious! Your family with be joyful as well.

How can we begin with a dose of daily joy?

  1. Start off with prayer. We always pray before meals. We prayed before school and we prayed as a family at night. We also prayed a blessing on each of our children.
  2. Song! A joyful and encouraging song can be such a blessing. I can’t tell you how it touched my soul! It is soulful, but it gave me such peace and Joy! Is there a song that makes you joyful? It works, today I listened to Hillsong’s Oceans here.  Lyrics: My faith will keep me stronger in the presence of my Savior… I will call upon your Name. … I am yours, and you are mine.  Just a few words that can only make you smile!
  3. Trust. God’s got this. Why are we worried, concerned, upset? Give it to the Lord.
  4. Still upset. Call a friend, pray with them. If you can pray with your spouse that is the best!
  5. Journal. Tell the Lord what you are thankful for and have all the kids start their own prayer journals. This is wonderful.

Look at what steals your joy. What is it? One thing? A pile-up of things? Don’t let things or business rob your joy. Take a breath, sometimes we all need a time out. While we want to be a good example to our kids, that doesn’t mean we have to be perfect. We can’t be perfect!

If we make mistakes we ask forgiveness and move on. Remember, focus on today.

Joyfulness is a choice. It is a decision to think the best of people to have a positive outlook and to look upon our situation in life with the knowledge that nothing lasts forever. Nothing. I know some of you listening may be ill or have circumstances that would cripple someone less faint of heart. For those of you, I send a virtual hug and know that you are in my prayers. We pray for all of our listeners on this network and another network I run.

This is meant to encourage you that joy is attainable and not to heap guilt upon you if you are not joyful today. That is okay! There are days when I want to crawl back in bed. Today I had to deal with a difficult work situation and all kinds of thoughts went through my head – some not very kind, but ultimately I found the reason for my feeling badly was because I was hurt. I think identifying hurt helped me to deal with it in a nonemotional manner, deal with it, and move beyond it. Do things hurt us, of course, every day. But what we do about it is the ultimate question. Do we sit in the hurt or claim our daily joy?

I for one will claim Joy!

Asking God

Ask God | Thy will be done in heaven as on earth is a form of asking God in prayer to guide our life. But is it that simple? Welcome to A Few Minutes with God, where we delve into the scriptures in a practical way. | #podcast #christianpodcast #askGodAsking God – Episode 107

Thy will be done in heaven as on earth is a form of asking God in prayer to guide our life. But is it that simple? Welcome to A Few Minutes with God, where we delve into the scriptures in a practical way.

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels and the books A Few Minutes with God and One More Child. You can find more information about both titles on Media Angels or Amazon.

So many times we begin the day with our to-do list running in our heads and frantic with all the things we need to do each day. I found myself in this mess in the not too distant past and I finally had to reevaluate my life as I found myself unintentionally clenching the insides of my mouth as I silently stressed over things I could not avoid and had no control over.

As a Christian, I carried on the guilt that I was not living up to the ideal. All Christians are happy they walk with inspiration from the Lord and have a ready smile for all they meet. Sure, that was me on occasion but more times than not I hid behind the discontent. I was frankly too busy.

Well fast-forward to today and I am still extremely busy but guess what, I’ve learned from my past mistakes the biggest one? I forgot to ask God.

  1. I forgot to ask God if I should take then next big project.
  2. I forgot to ask God if I should implement the “great idea” I had about work.
  3. I forgot to ask God about the little things as well as the bigger things.

Friends, you have often heard me say, “Pray about this, or pray about that…” and now I am reminding me and you that this is necessary!

I’m sure I’ve mentioned James 4:3 before, “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.”

Or James 1:22 “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.”

We all know talkers, and I am one of those, but if we don’t do what we recommend then we are as bad as those who do not believe. Many people want to say that faith is a one time commitment to the Lord and a one time decision, and to some extent it is, but if we do not walk in faith or do the good works that the Lord has prepared for us (Ephesians 2:10 -For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.) then we are talking the walk and not walking the talk.

James 4:7-8 is another wonderful example of asking God.

Friends, study James there is so much wisdom in that book as well as all the books in Scripture – it is not only for teaching but for blessing us and bringing the Christian faith to us in a very real way.

Let’s Pray:

Dear Heavenly Father, please remind us daily to ask you for our daily bread, our daily needs and to test all things first through you. Dear Lord, we humbly come before you and ask that you use each one of us as you have called us to be lovers of the word and to increase our faith each day. Pour out your blessings upon us and upon those who we now pray … I praise you Jesus for every great thing and I pray this in your blessed Name, Amen!

 

Food From Heaven

Food From Heaven | Are Christian's suffering from malnutrition? Food from heaven is the only food that sustains us in the spiritual sense, but how do we go from hearing the Word to doing what the Word says? In this episode, we will explore these concepts and more. | #podcast #christianpodcast #spiritualfoodFood From Heaven – Episode 106

Are Christian’s suffering from malnutrition? Food from heaven is the only food that sustains us in the spiritual sense, but how do we go from hearing the Word to doing what the Word says? In this episode, we will explore these concepts and more.

Thanks to our Sponsor A Few Minutes with God ~

Please check out my books and products – my other podcast Life

We are fed in many ways – our physical bodies with the food we eat, and how long could we go without food? Sometimes three times a day isn’t enough and we need or crave snacks. We feed our spiritual bodies with faith, the Word of God in the Bible, and listening or reading what others have to say, our pastors, voices out there who are Christian leaders.

But still, we are suffering from spiritual malnutrition we are missing that food from heaven. If I asked you to describe physical hunger you could do that, but what about spiritual hunger?

Ask yourselves these questions:

  1. Have I craved the Word of God?
  2. Do I feel lost without praying?
  3. Do I feel empty if I do not “do” my devotionals?
  4. Do I “do” my devotionals (prayer time, praying, listening to God, studying the Word, etc.) to feel better or because it feeds me?
  5. Do I sometimes feel lost like I am floundering?

These questions are meant to make you think. Not to feel guilty (repeat!)

Let’s listen to the bread of life discourse from the author, Jesus himself. Read John 6:25-59

We don’t lack food from heaven – we don’t lack hearing the Word of God – we hear many different interpretations from pastors, and from those who read the Word in private.

However, if you are a Catholic you believe the bread of life is in the Eucharist which is why it is available at every Mass, every day, and all over the world in every Catholic Church. It is the Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and I can tell you that often even Catholics only believe it is symbolic. The manna the Israelites ate was a precursor – a bodily food that showed, it was evidence of food from heaven, basically a miracle to keep the people from starving. The food we receive now is miraculous as well but in a spiritual sense.

God is calling us – a call to change.

God is all around us. We see Him in creation, in every good thing, what we lack is doing something about what we hear, what we learn, and that is something we should take to heart.

Are we changed? The word of God is like a two-edged sword, are we changed and challenged after hearing it?

How can we improve upon ourselves and our lack of fulfillment? We are malnourished in the sense of always looking for the next best thing, people often fill their lives with meanless chatter, events, and possessions but we all know those things do not fulfill us. The happiness of things is fleeting.

We have the Word of God all around us – but what we lack is the implementation of truth in our lives and in our hearts. If we truly have this food from heaven we can never be hungry. God promises!

Believers have malnutrition, we have the word which feeds us spiritually but we must do what we need to move forward.

It is time to be in the Word and to walk by faith and not by sight! That is the topic of another podcast coming soon. Faith in the unseen, because if we could see it, would it be called faith?

We must seek God and continue to seek only Him!

As a reminder, this podcast seeks to encourage you toward a deeper relationship with God. I ask questions often, and while I share my thoughts, I want you to grow in your walk with the Lord in this episode I feel we are scratching the surface on a deeper issue and that is how everything else is more important to “feeding” us in a temporal sense – a here and now, rather than an everlasting sense.

Let’s Pray.

Dear Heavenly Father, you are the Bread of Life, the food from heaven. You are the one and only God, there is no other, and I praise You and only You and I worship You – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. I ask you, Lord, to fill me with wisdom, understanding, and peace as I seek you in a deeper way. Let me put Your words in Holy Scripture in my heart and allow me to change as you would have me change for the better. I can not do this on my own Lord and I need your help. I ask you Lord for the prayers and petitions that I now ask for… I ask that you give us your love, your peace and your joy as we continue to pray and ask and seek you, and I pray this in Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Getting An Interview

Interview | Want an interview? Well, if you are an author, have a service or sell a product this is a great way to let people from all over the world know about what you have to offer. | #podcast #writingandpublishingGetting An Interview ~ Episode 11

Want an interview? Well, if you are an author, have a service or sell a product this is a great way to let people from all over the world know about what you have to offer.

Thanks to our sponsor! Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference. Learn more here.

How Do You Get An Interview?

I’ve met people and in the course of a conversation I’ll say, “Hey, can I interview you? I’d love to interview you about ____, my audience would enjoy what you have to say!” Believe me, this happens rarely. But I am approached online often by people I don’t know.

What I have learned is people with a book, a product or a service often approach me in a way that is not going to get them an interview on my podcast and I host several! So if you have something that you want to share, this is important information for you. 

 

I have a question for you. I actually have several questions and this is something that I would like you to think about if you want an interview.

  1. Why do you want that interview? If you’re going to say, I want to make money, then that is a sure fire way to fail. I have found that if you don’t have passion-passion-and-passion, you can’t fake it and if you’re on an interview and you’re not excited about the topic and you don’t have a lot to bring to the table, it’s going to show.
  2. What do you have to share that is unique? I shared with you in a previous episode that I wrote a book on writing and publishing. What makes my book unique? It’s short. You can read it in two to four hours and it’s like having a conversation with me. It is my consultation in a nutshell. You can find it on Amazon.
  3. How can you capture the eye of someone who has a platform that you want to be featured on? If you didn’t listen to Episode Nine on Connections, go back and listen to that episode or re-listen to it and you will find the importance of catching the eye of a potential podcaster by following them on social media and connecting with them in that way. Be sure to comment and leave a nice review 🙂 All this helps.

Being unique is important. It can be as simple as taking a complex topic and breaking it down. Like I shared with you about my Information In A Nutshell book and we did this in the second book in the Information Nutshell series and that is written by a CPA who wrote Business Tips and Taxes for Writers and Bloggers. Again, a very short book that is going to be something you can access with information that is going to help you to be successful in your business.

The secret sauce in this podcast on how to get an interview is the importance of connections. (If you’ve listened to past episodes, the secret sauce is a little bit of information I’m going to give you that is so important.) This is a surefire way to be seen and to make contact with people who have a platform. For example, Jeanne Burke wrote a book called College Prep Genius.

She is the resident expert on the SAT and ACT which are important for college entrance and more importantly, scholarships. She has been on ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox News, and so many more television and radio shows. I’ve interviewed her several times and she is the walking, talking test prep genius.

Not only did I interview her, but I offered her a podcast on my network. Why? Because she was the perfect fit and her topic is high interest to my audience. So you know, a lot has been made about a pitch and I’m going to go through that in more detail at some point in another podcast. But I just want to give you a very short example of that, but before I do, I want you to be thinking about this and I’m going to ask you more questions.

More Questions!

  1. Do you “know” the person that is going to be interviewing you in the sense of you’ve listened to their show, you follow them on social media and remember the secret sauce connection?
  2. Is your message a good fit for the person’s show? I can’t tell you the number of times people contact me and they’re not a good fit.
  3. Is your message a message that’s not a sales pitch for your product or service. I received something recently from a lady and it was all about selling her book. I really wanted to interview this person, so I went the extra mile and explained to her I needed the “concept” of her product to talk about, not the product itself. She came back with really good information

If you answer these questions and you’ve answered them in a way that is giving to others, then we’re ready for the pitch. The first point is to keep it short. Again, I’ll go into this in detail on another podcast.

KEEP it SIMPLE:

You’re going to keep it simple because you have to grab the person’s attention. Remember your goal and sum it up in a sentence or two at the most, and be sure to tailor the pitch to the person. Know who is receiving your pitch and also what’s in it for me, and I don’t mean me in the sense of you,

I mean me in the sense of the person that you want to interview you, they are going to look at it and say, “Gosh, this is a great fit for my audience.” Be sure to do your research!

After you write your pitch, read it aloud. Keep it short, maybe four 50 to 600 words at the most, and if you’re going to send that in an email or if you’re talking to somebody, keep it to about 60 seconds. Really fine-tune your message because that is so important.

Eventually one of the goals of this platform is to monetize it, to make money, but friends this can’t be the main point. After a couple of years I was able to build my platform to have sponsors contact me. But, this wasn’t immediate so in the meantime

Now I have sponsorships, I have nothing against making money because it helps pay the bills–but the people I know that think podcasting is all about making dollars right off the bat are the ones that struggle.

Connect with me, and be sure to share this podcast and leave me a star rating on your favorite app!

Christian Ministry

Christian Ministry | Have you considered volunteering in a Christian Ministry? In today’s episode, we discuss why ministry work is important and ways to pray to the Lord for help in leading you. | #podcast #christianpodcastChristian Ministry — Episode 105

Have you considered volunteering in a Christian Ministry? In today’s episode, we discuss why ministry work is important and ways to pray to the Lord for help in leading you.

Sponsor: MediaAngels.com

Recently on a trip, I met two very sweet nuns. It is often that you see nuns wearing a habit and so, they pretty much stand out. One, in particular, caught my eye and she seemed to have that peace of Christ. She had a smile on her face and looked so inviting that I fell into easy conversation with her. She told me she wasn’t always Catholic and actually had a late calling to become a nun. I was so taken by her story that I asked her if I could interview Sr. Cecilia at some point for the One More Child Podcast and she said yes! So, I hope to do that soon.

That started me thinking. Here is this lady who has given her life to Christ and is by worldly standards “giving up everything,” to serve in a life of ministry. One of our family friends’ oldest son is a Catholic priest and we knew him as a young boy. He was a good student, started out homeschooling and then into a private Catholic high school, went to college and then, God called him. He said that when he was twelve he told us he wanted to be a priest but no one took him seriously. He had a bright future and he too “gave up everything,” to serve the Lord.

Do we give up everything when we serve? I don’t believe we do because as I am sure you know, you can’t out give God. Try it!

Ministry in a way is framed in Scripture with hospitality. We read of times when the Lord appeared or showed himself to those such as Abraham.

Abraham greets three stranger and gives them a wonderful meal – A and S did not know this was the Lord until he predicted that Sarah would bear a son (well past her childbearing years)

Later we read that Martha and Mary open their home to the Lord and his disciples – Mary listens to Jesus and Martha does the work – yet each serves God in their own way.

Last week we spoke about desiring God in our lives – more of God and less of us – and the love of God changes our hearts! We read in the Bible about how God showed us this love in serving others.

Have you asked yourself how you can serve God? Is there a Christian ministry that needs your help? I’m part of a women’s ministry, Magnificat that hosts a prayer breakfast four times a year. At this breakfast, we open our hearts to the women who attend, we have music and we sing praises to God and then we pray, we listen to a speaker who tells us their testimony about what God has done in their lives. Not so they can boast but so that they can point to the Lord and say, see where I am now thanks be to God.

Every time I attend I feel a stronger pull and call to serve God. We see examples of today of ministries. There are Christian ministries serve in nursing homes, they take communion to the people there, they set up prayer times and visit with the people.

We see those who serve in ministry to help bring the word of God whether in testimonies – This is what God has done in my life – or teachings that will allow us to make life changes and want to also be open to hospitality.

There are people who write books, who give talks, who host podcasts. Of course, when we think of ministry we think of those who go into the “mission field” to bring Christ to people in foreign countries.

Christian ministry can be as simple as a smile to a stranger, a smile to someone at church or even baking a bit extra to give a neighbor or friend. If we love the Lord we will open our hearts to serve those around us in any way that we can.

Look at the time you have and also your gifts. What do you have to offer? Sometimes a smile and a love for the Lord is enough! I remember one time praying that God uses me to bring more people to him… kids little … at home… no time. Repair people, cleaning people, bug guy!

Take some time and open your journal and ask God:

  1. Do you want me to serve you in Christian Ministry?
  2. How do you want me to serve?
  3. Bring me opportunities
  4. Open the doors
  5. Show me which ones to walk in!

Let’s Pray – Dear Lord you have called each one of us by name. You have asked us to make disciples of all nations, and while I have little to offer I give you the little I have. Please God, use me in this time of confusion, in this time of hardship and heartbreak. We live in a hurting world Lord, please use us to bring love and peace in your precious Name. Lord I ask for the following: (pray here). Lord, I praise you among all Names, and I thank you for every good thing and I pray this in Jesus, Name. Amen.

Blogging

Blogging | Blogging is one of those online platforms that takes very little work these days to set up and begin. It is used as a platform for authors, podcasters, and people who believe they have a message that they want to share. In this episode, we will examine blogging and how this can help your online presence. | #podcast #writing #podcasting #bloggingBlogging – Episode 10

Blogging is one of those online platforms that takes very little work these days to set up and begin. It is used as a platform for authors, podcasters, and people who believe they have a message that they want to share. In this episode, we will examine blogging and how this can help your online presence.

Sponsorship – Ultimate Christian Communicator’s Conference.

Many authors are told they must have a blog with a large following to get a book contract and while there is some truth in this, blogs take time, work and good blogs have a ton of social media work that goes on behind the scenes.

Blogs crop up daily and I am sure the statistics are frightening. I can write, each podcast I create in the hundreds now are mini-blog posts. They contain the content I will share as well as some well-placed search engine optimization phrases. However, I often find it is easier to podcast than it is to write! Why is this?

Marketing. If you are going to blog you have to market. Sorry. It is a sad truth. Many blogs languish because no one knows about them. Some bloggers write to make money, they get readers by giving things away or they talk about deals with links to said deals. Then, their sites are covered with ads with pop up ads and all types of noise so that you can barely read the writing.

Are you like me with too many ideas and too little time? If you are considering a blog here is what I’d recommend you do:

Reason For Blogging:

  1. Purpose
  2. Can you write?
  3. Do you have a topic you are passionate about?
  4. Will you run out of information?
  5. How often will you post?

The technology of Blogging:

  1. Can you set up a website or will you hire this out?
  2. Are you a techie? Will you learn?
  3. How are your marketing skills?
  4. Do you have social media accounts that are for your business/blog?
  5. Will you set up an email with an autoresponder?

Do you want your blog to succeed? Here is the secret sauce of the day… you must be passionate about your topic and your topic must be original. You can not copy someone else’s blog or style and call it good enough. How many mommy blogs are out there after the Pioneer Woman made it big? I’m sure a ton of copy cat versions. Now Lee films on the Food Network has a bunch of book deals, a store and so much more. She was real, authentic, humorous and now her blog looks nothing like it first did. But that’s okay! It changed and adapted.

You can look at successful blogs and say, why is this good or why do I like this blog? In that way, you can figure out a style you can live with and that reflects the five points above. The saying if you build it they will come only works in the theatres. In real life, if you build it (aka a blog) you need to be sure your marketing is top-notch or you will be spinning your wheels.

So, here are more questions to ask:

The Bottom Line:

  1. Will writing this blog take time away from writing a book or podcasting?
  2. Will writing this blog be the perfect way to showcase my podcast, service or books?
  3. Will I enjoy writing this blog and it is a passion of mine?
  4. Will the benefits outweigh the time constraint.
  5. Do I have the social media savviness to get the word out?

If you begin a blog, stick to it. Give yourself a time limit to get it off the ground and share it with everyone. Don’t give up. Make business cards, hand it to friends, mail them to those you think will benefit. Remember the smaller your niche the better it will go, and have fun with it!

 

Fruit Of The Spirit In Families

Fruit of the Spirit | Does your family need the Fruit of the Spirit in your lives? Join me and a special guest, Deanna Bartalini, the author of "Invite the Holy Spirit Into Your Life," and shares with us how you can encourage spiritual growth in yourself and in your family. | #podcast #christianpodcastFruit of the Spirit In Families ~ Episode 20

Does your family need the Fruit of the Spirit in your lives? Join me and a special guest, Deanna Bartalini, the author of “Invite the Holy Spirit Into Your Life,” and shares with us how you can encourage spiritual growth in yourself and in your family.

Deanna Bartalini can be found on her website here – http://www.deannabartalini.com/

To purchase Deanna’s book – visit this website for more information.

She is the author of “Invite the Holy Spirit into Your Life: Growing in Love, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-Control.” This is a Journal for Catholic Women. (This book can be used by women of all Christian denominations.)

The growth in spiritual gifts and fruits are important! In this episode, we continue to learn more about ourselves and how we can improve in our spiritual walk.

“If we live by the Spirit, let us also be guided by the Spirit…” Galatians 5:22-25

We can grow in our daily life and have more peace, love, and joy. This is foundational to knowing who I am with Christ and being “good” with it! ~ Deanna shares more on the audio of this episode.

Fruit of the Spirit:

  1. How the Fruit of the Spirit is different from the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
  2. Where do the fruits come from?
  3. Why it is important to have and grow in the Spirit.
  4. How this is different than being a “good person.”
  5. How do we get and grow in the Fruit of the Spirit?

The Lord has gifted us and to grow in the gifts we already have we must practice. Typically we are “falling down,” in a fruit that we need. In this way, we practice to attain or achieve this blessing from the Lord.

Deanna Bartalini, M.Ed., M.P.A., is a Catholic writer, speaker and presenter, and educator.

Connections

Connections | It's all about connections, who do you know, how can you get an interview on a podcast, how can you promote your book? Connections mean everything in the industry saturated with mediocre and many time false information about the writing and publishing industry. | #podcast #writingandpodcastingConnections In Writing, Podcasting & Publishing – Episode 9

It’s all about connections, who do you know, how can you get an interview on a podcast, how can you promote your book? Connections mean everything in the industry saturated with mediocre and many time false information about the writing and publishing industry.

Thanks to the: Ultimate Christian Communicators Conference ~ this event is for anyone seriously considering increasing their exposure as a speaker at upcoming events as well as those interested in learning from leaders in the industry! Not to be missed, the conference can be attended live or you can purchase the recorded set.

My story began backward, I had a speaking platform before I had a book. This is actually a great way to begin because when you have a book, product or service, you already have a willing and waiting group of people who are interested in buying what you have to sell. That is one reason I recommend that you begin a podcast if you have allot of information worth sharing.

I’ve worked with many people in the writing, publishing and podcasting world. I’ve met some heads of large publishing companies and learned that I’m very happy as a self-published author. As I may have shared in the past, I received and turned down a four-book publishing contract. Were there times I regretted this? Yes, but then I know that it was all for the best.

One of the introductions to a large publisher came from a friend. He was actually an author but his day job was as an investment planner. I met him at a conference after he heard me speak, liked what I had to say and we had a nice conversation at my book table afterward. He wanted to introduce me to this publisher (who was his publisher) as well as one of his clients. Connections!

Connections help us in time of need. When I had my book publishing offer and read over the contract I realized that I needed to give this company the right of refusal with any of my upcoming books. I also knew that this company had a very narrow focus and my other books would have a larger market. These were not decisions I made lightly. It helped that I could go to a friend who had signed a book deal with another publisher and compare notes. I realized that with my goal, which was to run an online platform my goals were a bit different than most.

We live firmly in the world of home, family, and schedules. For those of us who run businesses, we also live in a world of people we’ve never met, people who are dear friends, and we form many symbiotic relationships. In my online world I know many people, in fact, my Facebook feed can attest to this and there is a small fraction of my friends that I have met in real life. Yet, many of those friends and connections are real and basically in this age of technology a mouse click away.

How do we use our connections? That is the real question. Before we delve into this, I want to share what I call a “secret sauce” piece of information. I’m a cook can you tell? This information will make a difference in how others perceive you online. The secret is to be a friend before you begin asking for favors. I can not tell you all the times I receive emails from people who ask to be interviewed. Either the emails are from slick advertising companies representing these authors or product providers, or the person themselves.

I think, are we friends on Facebook. I look – no. Are we connected on LinkedIn? No. Twitter? No. Instagram? No again.

If I am not your friend on social media and you ask me something, even if you have the best product known to man out there, I’m frankly just not that interested. Interviewing takes time and work. I have to find out all about you, look at your books or service, understand a bit about your history or back story. I will in addition promote, promote, promote your interview once it is complete. Work. Lots of work.

Do you see why connections are important? I’ve had people begin sharing my posts, comment on my podcasts, or send me emails after receiving something from my mailing list. These are connections, they are people I may know or interact with. Sometimes, rarely someone sends me an email and it interests me so much I’ll ask for an interview, but that happens rarely. An interview is a favor.

Here are my top tips for making the right connections:

  1. Be sure to connect on social media. Follow them on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.
  2. Do they have a podcast? Be sure you listen, comment and share.
  3. Do they have a blog? Comment.
  4. Share, share, share. DO you see them posting on social media? Share it with your friends.
  5. Give. Give. Give.

I love to read and in my spare time that is what I do! It is an escape and I try to read one spiritual book, one business book, and then one fun book. I followed my own advice and after reading a book that I received for free on Amazon Kindle, I followed the author and bought all the other books in the series. She invited in her books to subscribe to her email to get a free book, and I did. I found myself enjoying her short emails and then a request. Receive ARC (Advanced Reader Copies) to find typos etc. and in return comment on social media and where the books are sold – disclosing that I received a free copy. Since I liked the author I was in. Then, the author emailed me back (after I sent links to the reviews) surprised I wrote three different reviews. Seriously? Who would post the same review three places? Obviously, someone who doesn’t know about the importance of SEO (search engine optimization – a must for those of us who know what that means.). So, I thought why not ask, this lady seems really nice – I should interview her! And, she said yes. So, at some point, I’ll have her on this show.

Connections. They take time but they work. And, friends you will be surprised at how a seemingly benign and kind thing turns into something more!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this episode, connect with me on social media, and please follow this show, give me a star rating on your favorite podcast app, and share this episode with a friend!

Hope you plan on coming to the Ultimate Christian Communicator’s Conference so we can meet in real life! And, I hope to talk to you soon!

Desiring God

Desiring God | Above all things desiring God is the key to our happiness. Or do you look at cheap substitutions and find yourself feeling lacking? In this episode, we will discuss how our desire for God can make us whole and realize what we are missing in our lives. | #podcast #christianpodcastDesiring God – Episode 104

Above all things desiring God is the key to our happiness. Or do you look at cheap substitutions and find yourself feeling lacking? In this episode, we will discuss how our desire for God can make us whole and realize what we are missing in our lives.

Sponsor! Overcomer Movie

Trailer URL for Overcomer Movie: 

Site URL for the Overcomer Movie

In the episodes of AFMWG Podcast, we’ve talked about spending time with God in prayer, in the word, and in silence. In this way, we can grow in our relationship with Him. But we are busy, life has a way of throwing us curves and we find ourselves overwhelmed many times and ready to channel surf or mindlessly check social media accounts.

Talking To God In Prayer takes persistence ~ Desiring God Is A Choice

We talk to God, when we read the Bible, we try to listen to that still, small voice. We are not blessed to walk with God as Adam and Eve did, or talk to God as Abraham did, and the prophets who heard the Lord, clearly and distinctly.

When we think about persistence we think about Abraham asking God to spare Sodom and Gomora – over and over again reducing the number until it was down to 10. Unfortunately for the people only four survived, Lot his wife, and his two daughters (until his wife turned back to look after being warned not to – and the Bible says she turned into a pillar of salt) and then only three survived, Lot and his two daughters, because the people had hardened their hearts against God.

When God gives us a warning we must listen, and his justice –  We can never know the mind of God – we can read the Bible but sometimes what we read is puzzling which is why we need:

  1. Quiet and prayer first.
  2. Pray to the Holy Spirit ~ who will help us! Just ask
  3. Good pastor or spiritual counselor.

Why is this? Desiring God doesn’t necessarily mean we understand his ways. For example,  why didn’t God get angry when Abraham asked him over and over again to spare Sodom and Gomora? This evil was spreading and spreading to everyone who entered and set foot, yet God listened to Abraham’s prayer.

Jesus showed us how to talk to the Lord and how to pray – the Lord’s Prayer.

Jesus told us to call, God – “Father,” and no matter what your relationship is with your Father – God is a God of blessings.

Jesus illustrates the persistence

With a relationship, with a desire to know God, we understand that the source of all we need centers on God. If we fill our time with cheap substitutes we learn, rather quickly that it leaves us feeling lacking.

Many times our desire for God centers around our need to have prayers answered. If you pray and the Lord hasn’t answered you do you give up? We know God hears all of our prayers – even those we have in our hearts and are afraid to ask! If you give up then you are not serious in their request, and how can I say that? I don’t know you do I? I can say that because I know that God is all good, all-knowing and His generosity and mercy is immense. He has gifted us with the gifts through the Holy Spirit! I was able to interview an author of a book on the Holy Spirit who had some amazing insight, and I can’t wait to share that interview with you.

We desire God because we are commanded to love God.

Greatest Commandment is to love God with all your heart and to love your neighbor as your self…

Knowing things in our hearts, memorizing Scripture, doing works of charity and mercy all bring us closer to God and it is the desire and faith that changes our hearts.

Moses realized when he spoke to the people about God’s commandments – Deuteronomy 30:14 – “It is something very near to you…in your hearts.”

What better way is there to know something than by heart – to commitment things to memory. Whether it is prayers, or whether it is memorizing the Scriptures. When we have things in our hearts, we open our hearts to the words and it becomes part of our life, it molds our life and changes it – hopefully for the better!

But can we apply these things to our own lives?

We all know the story of the Good Samaritan the story of someone who goes out of their way for someone that they don’t know. The story is of the man who helped the person left to die on the side of the street after being victimized, we see people walk by who are the very people who should help this man, but they do not. These people walk on the other side of the road to avoid the victim.

Yet this story is one of the most popular because we find that the person who should be the one the least likely to help turns out to be the person who helps.

There were many major religious difference between the Samaritans and the Jews, but the parable teaches a greater truth, and that is the focus of the law over love.

Caution here – we hate the sin but love the sinner. We are not the ones to condemn, we leave it up to God. I feel that people use situations in the Bible to fit their own preconceived notion of how things should be. That is an error.

The story has a great impact on our lives and makes us think – it stretches us – it is how we should feel when we read the Word of God – we should want to be changed for the better. Deut. 30:10 … Moses asks the people to return to God with all your heart. Can we do this, especially with prayer?

If God’s will is in your heart so that you can desire Him, then you will know what to do in difficult situations, in times when there is nowhere else to turn but to God for the answers, when things are out of our control. You cannot help but follow God when times are difficult because you’re the desire for God has increased your faith and He has changed your heart.

Desiring God can increase with:

  1. Pray – make time each day.
  2. Scripture
  3. Sing to the Lord
  4. Journal
  5. Listen

I know friends, nothing new, but if we do not practice these things we will become stagnant and empty and seek things that will not make us happy!

Let’s pray. Dear Heavenly Father, you are the provider of every good thing, I ask God for a desire for you – I want more of you Father, more of you in my life. Increase my desire to know you, love you and do all things that bring you glory. Dear Lord thank you for today and all you have given me, even those things that are hard and I do not feel I can carry. I don’t need to worry because I know that you have me in the palm of your hand. Thank you, Father, and please hear the prayers I am asking for and I will continue to pray with the faith of Abraham who asked over and over again. I pray for the following…

And I pray this in the Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit Jesus Amen.

Transforming Faith

Transforming Faith | Do you have a transforming faith? A faith that withstands persecution or a faith that would leave everything behind to follow God? We have many excuses for following God The disciples left everything, family, and home to follow Jesus. In this episode we will discuss following God will transform us. | #podcast #christianpodcastTransforming Faith – Episode 103

Do you have a transforming faith? A faith that withstands persecution or a faith that would leave everything behind to follow God? We have many excuses for following God The disciples left everything, family, and home to follow Jesus. In this episode we will discuss following God will transform us.

Sponsor! Overcomer Movie

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Friends, let’s be real here – we are attached to the things of this world, our homes, our sense of security and of course comfort, and every technological toy that helps us in our daily lives. And, why shouldn’t we be attached? We are living in this present age, right? We should have the things we need to survive.

In Matthew 8:20, Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.”

Jesus left home to preach, teach and heal. He was sent by the Father. He called simple men to follow him, and they did. Once the men followed they changed, they learned, they became transformed.

Faith will transform us! We see it in the lives of the disciples, and that God equips those He calls. Did they get it right the first time? No, it was over and over again.

What hits home is when we read that not all those who were called followed. Why?

Some had good reasons – one had to bury his father, one wants to say goodbye to his family, and we know the point being made is that follow Jesus requires total commitment. Like Elisha Jesus’ disciples are called to leave everything behind – even home.

In Luke 9:60 we read – Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”

We are asked to leave everything and follow him. The question is can we? The next question to ask is do we follow him in our daily lives?

Friends, when I think about what the disciples went through I am amazed and in awe, but then I remember, again that God equips those He calls.

Luke 10:3 – Jesus sends his disciples “like lambs among wolves.”  Jesus asked the disciples to depend on the kindness of strangers, as they travel without belongings or money. If people did not welcome them they were to dust off your feet their feet –

Luke 10:9-11

 Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ 10 But when you enter a town and are not welcomed, go into its streets and say, 11 ‘Even the dust of your town we wipe from our feet as a warning to you. Yet be sure of this: The kingdom of God has come near.’

So many people think that Christianity means, “what you give up.” No. This is an untruth. Christianity is all-inclusive, it is about redemption, but remember it is about the cross as well. Faith in the power of the cross, the redemptive power of Christ’s crucifixion for our sins – not the sins of our neighbor’s but our sins.

How can you thank someone who died for you? For the sins that you committed yesterday, today and tomorrow? We become new with our Christian faith and it is transforming faith.

The door is open and everyone is able to receive salvation – yet are we willing or do we have excuses. Yes, we can be laborers for the kingdom, this means to our neighbors to our friends to those who have hurt us the most. We forgive as we are forgiven. We are transformed.

Let’s pray. Dear Heavenly Father, I thank you for today, for all the blessings and for those blessings that are yet to come. I thank you your provision, for keeping us safe, for protecting marriages Lord, for coming against the evil one who wants to harm us and to break up marriages. I thank you for all the things you have done that I do not know about…and Lord I ask that you give me transforming faith, the faith that allows me to leave behind the old creation and become a new creation in Christ. Dear Lord, I ask for the following prayers … please, Lord, I ask that you help those I pray for that you help me and I pray this in Jesus, Name. Amen.

Taming the Tongue

Tming The Tongue | In James 3:3 he talks about the power of the tongue. In this episode, Felice discusses how some of us need a good dose of taming the tongue in our everyday lives. Can you imagine a world where we are encouraged and uplifted, it can be done and it begins with you! | #podcast #christianpodcastTaming The Tongue – Episode 18

In James 3:3 he talks about the power of the tongue. In this episode, Felice discusses how some of us need a good dose of taming the tongue in our everyday lives. Can you imagine a world where we are encouraged and uplifted, it can be done and it begins with us.

Sponsor! Overcomer Movie

Trailer URL for Overcomer Movie:  

Site URL for the Overcomer Movie

How often have you said something you regret, to your spouse, your children, or someone else close to you? Why is it that we hurt the people we love the most? Often, as parents we often find ourselves saying things in anger, frustration and then wished for a do-over? The good news is we do get a do-over each and every day, but truthfully our frustrations often occur in direct correlation to our experience and relationship with God.

Recently I was in church and praying. As I was praying to the Lord, a strong thought of anger came over me of an injustice that happened in my life. It wasn’t a big thing but it was something that hurt me. In my mind, I knew it was silly to be upset because I understood the action behind the cause of my pain was not intentional, yet the more I thought about it the angrier I became. So angry in fact that I almost got up and left the church!

I realized my mistake, repented and asked the Lord for forgiveness and the Lord relieved me of the burden of hurt. When we talk about taming the tongue, the same goes for words that are left unsaid. Sometimes we don’t know what to say and even our silence can cause harm to those we love.

God said the greatest commandment is to love God with all your heart and to love your neighbor as yourself. These are what I call heart issues. We know things in our heart but our minds are a different story.

Faith changes our heart. It fills our heart with every good thing. If God’s will is in your heart you will know what to do in difficult situations, and in times when there is nowhere else to turn but to God for the answers. Life often throws us into situations where we feel totally out of control. Ask any parent of young children. One minute everything is going well and the next minute chaos! You can’t help but cry out to God in times such as this rather than losing your temper. It never helps.

I use to say, I have to yell because I’m Italian, and once I yell I feel better. This might be true, but I can guarantee while I felt better my kids didn’t.

Taming the Tongue: Great Scriptures:

  • Colossians 4:6:
  •  Ephesians 4:29
  • Proverbs 10:19
  • Proverbs 15:4
  • Matthew 15:11
  • Psalm 34:13
    Proverbs 15:1-2
    Proverbs 6:16-19

So, how do you apply this to your life? Taming the Tongue 101:

  1. When you want to lash out, take a deep breath – pause.
  2. Prepare a statement – I’m so angry I don’t know what to say right now, but let me pray about it and I will let you know later.
  3. Avoid confrontation – yes, you need to address bad behavior (with your kids) but, avoid arguing. Start with – what you did is not right, Avoid character assassination. Address the sin, not the person.
  4. What is really going on here?
  5. Relationship – it is all about love, the love of God within us and the fruits of the Holy Spirit – the gifts of the Holy Spirit and the peace and joy that only God can give.

I believe that many times when we lose it and we are upset many times it is because of what we believe the problem is rather than what it actually is – what I mean by this is often when we listen, (which we don’t want to because we are angry!) then we realize much of what we were upset about really isn’t valid. And if it is, take a breath and use a prepared statement!

Listen, no one said life is easy, there are often ups and downs in each person’s life that is a struggle, but if we take the time and make a plan, we can sure work toward taming the tongue and having fewer regrets in life!

You won’t want to miss the next upcoming episode – with Deanna Bartalin who wrote a book on the topic and has a wealth of great ideas that are applicable

WRAP Yourself in Scripture

Wrap Yourself In Scripture | What happens when you wrap yourself in Scripture? You will find yourself in a closer relationship with God! Why wait? Learn what the acronym WRAP means and some great resources to get you started. | #podcasat #christian podcast Wrap Yourself In Scripture Episode 102

What happens when you wrap yourself in Scripture? You will find yourself in a closer relationship with God! Why wait? Learn what the acronym WRAP means and some great resources to get you started.

Opening nationwide on August 23, OVERCOMER dares to leave you filled with hope, inspired to dream, and asks the question: what do you allow to define you?

Trailer URL for Overcomer Movie: 

Site URL for the Overcomer Movie

Great Resource!

Where to find the book ~ WRAP Yourself in Scripture by Karen Dwyer

There are many ways to pray and prayer is different for each person. Some people pray with words, others are with the Lord listening to his small, still, voice and others may sing or talk to the Lord as if they were talking to a friend. Prayer is two-way communication with the Lord. In this way, we are able to grow closer to God.

Recently I attended a conference and heard Karen Dwyer speak, and was really blessed. In one of the books she wrote, she explained a concept about called WRAP, wrap yourself in Scripture. I felt that this process helped me to not only read the scriptures but to allow the words to touch my heart in a deeper way. Reading the scriptures allows us to be in fellowship with God and brings us joy. We should want a deeper encounter with the Almighty God in daily prayer.

Wrap stands for:

  • W stands for Write
  • R stands for Reflect
  • A stands for Apply
  • P stands for Praise

According to Dwyer, the WRAP process takes the same skills we use when we worry and transfers to prayer. She goes into this in detail in her book. But this process really works!

I think what I found the most encouraging is that she said we should spend time after reading the scriptures to allow the Lord to love us! Just think of it! We know God loves us unconditionally. But when we pause after reading the scriptures and try to seek what the Lord is telling us from His word, we are allowing His love to flow upon us! What a blessing!

There is power in prayer, in praise and in reading scriptures. Our Lord Jesus quoted the scriptures many times. The scriptures were memorized and made part of their lives. Do we memorize the Word? Do we commit verses to mind so that we can recall them in times of darkness when we need the Lord the most?

In order to wrap ourselves in scripture, we need to make an effort, and as in past podcasts, I’ve discussed setting aside time, using a prayer journal, finding a good place that is quiet to read the Bible and to pray. These are simple directions in how to get the most out of your time with God.

Let’s pray.

Dear heavenly Father, we praise you and we thank you for every good thing in our life and in the lives of those around us. We thank you for all the people who never appreciate or thank you for what you have done in their lives.

Power of Praise

Power of Praise | The power of praise is amazing! It can uplift your spirits in a way that nothing else can. Want to feel like you are touching heaven? Praise God. In this episode, Felice shares the amazing power of praise and ways you can use this in your own life. | #podcast #christianpodcastPower of Praise Episode 101

The power of praise is amazing! It can uplift your spirits in a way that nothing else can. Want to feel like you are touching heaven? Praise God. In this episode, Felice shares the amazing power of praise and ways you can use this in your own life.

Thanks to our sponsor – Overcomer the Movie! In theatres at the end of August 2019 but guess what? The video is available afterward as well. This is one of the must-see movies for families (who love sports) of the year.

I just came back from a Christian conference and it was amazing. Yes, the talks were great, the setting was wonderful. It was a split between time to have quiet and pray, worship, listen to amazing speakers, pray as a group, visiting wonderful churches and sampling the local cuisine. I even rode in my first non-taxi! But even with all the wonderful things that happened was praising God in a large group. This group was an International Ministry with leaders from around the world and we were all singing praises to Jesus! Our Lord and Our God.

One of the greatest books I read on the power of praise was written by Merlin R. Carothers, Power in Praise. It is a life changer if you have never read it. I purchased this book in bunches of five to ten. While Mr. Carothers is no longer alive he was such a powerhouse. I was on his mailing list and even received an email from him after he died!

When we praise God we are keeping the first of the Ten Commandments. “I am the Lord thy God, thou shalt not have any strange gods before Me.”
It puts our eyes back where it belongs, on God. We forget our problems.
It makes the enemy flee! The devil hates our praise, evil can not stand when we praise and thank God. Feeling depressed? Praise God. Try it. Praise reminds that we need God. God will bless us

Psalms 100:4 – Enter his gates with thanksgiving, his courts with praise. Give thanks to him; bless his name!”

Here is an example of a litany of praise.

  • Praise you, Jesus.
  • I thank you, Lord Jesus.
  • You are the King of Kings.
  • You are the Lord of Lord.
  • You are the Bright Shining Star.
  • You are the Alpha and the Omega – the Beginning and the End.

You can add to this and it will, I promise to change your life.

Let’s pray:

Dear Lord Jesus, I praise you and I thank you for all that you do. Please help us to worship you in praise, there is power in praise and it lifts us to the gates of heaven and beyond. I love you, Lord. I worship you, Lord. You are the Creator of the Universe and all that is in it – and you are the Almighty God. Dear Lord, in humility I come before you and lay out all of my petitions to you… I place them in your most competent and loving hands. Please Lord, if it is for my eternal good and those that I pray for, please answer my prayers… Thank you God for giving me the ultimate gift, the gift of faith, salvation and I pray, someday eternal life with you.

 

5 Characteristics of Healthy Families

5 Characteristics Of A Healthy Family | Being open to having more kids comes with understanding the characteristics of healthy families. There are five main characteristics we will focus upon as well as realistic goals to achieve peace and harmony, what parents and children both crave.| #podcast #characteristcsofhealthyfamilies #familylife #parenting5 Characteristics of Healthy Families Episode 17

Being open to having more kids comes with understanding the characteristics of healthy families. There are five main characteristics we will focus upon as well as realistic goals to achieve peace and harmony, what parents and children both crave.

Thanks to our sponsor!

Opening nationwide on August 23, OVERCOMER dares to leave you filled with hope, inspired to dream, and asks the question: what do you allow to define you?

Trailer URL for Overcomer Movie: 

Site URL for the Overcomer Movie

The family is the safe zone, it is a place where the children can grow and flourish into the people that God designed them to be. A family offers the children emotional security free from self-doubt, incrimination, and guilt! Does this sound like a fictitious ideal? Well, it shouldn’t be, God designed our families to be a strong unit, something the enemy hates! For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” Matthew 18:20  God also formed the family in his image – the two become one and nine months later a baby is born. I realize life is not that simple but thinking of the family in the context of God and his creation and plan for a family it brings it to an entirely new realm.

5 Characteristics of Healthy Families:

  1. Faith: A relationship with God that is strong is a foundation to everything that comes next, love, kindness, loyalty, and trust. Faith is a gift that is given freely, God waits with open hands for our “yes” and invites us to true peace.
  2. Love: this comes from above! God is love and the source of all love. If you do not know God, that is a priority. Secondly loving others as you love yourself. Yes, this may seem narcissistic, but you can’t love others if you hate yourself. Love is the glue that keeps a family together.
  3. Kindness: We can train ourselves to be kind and think the best of others even if this does not come naturally. A healthy family is one that thinks before they speak and thinks the best of people before jumping to conclusions.
  4. Loyalty: Will we stand by our family members, nurture and train them to be the best person as God designed them to be, using their talents and gifts for others? Loyalty to the family can be expressed by encouraging unity during discussions and when disunity happens have tools in place to bring the family together for open and honest discussion. This relates to trust as well.
  5. Trust: Trust is earned and it can easily be lost. Trust is given and it should be cherished, explain the importance of trust and understanding why this is something that must be demonstrated again and again. This is especially important when the child is young, that the child takes ownership of situations as presented and shows they can do what is required.

The family bound is important and it is part of a family legacy. What do we want our children to remember? A good home life and a family that cares is much more important than what your family can buy. Some families think it is quality time vs. quantity time – and think there is no difference.

Each family needs to figure out their own solution for this, and for us, I chose to stay home with my children vs. furthering my career. My career came later when the kids were older when I could fulfill my dream of writing, publishing and public speaking. My niece and nephews have a different family solution, my niece an attorney works and her husband stays home with the kids and then works on the computer when they are in school, my other niece and nephew both doctors split a week with one working two days and the other three days a week. For each family, time with their kids is important because it goes so quickly.

Some quick keys that will help your family is to have open communication – kids need to feel they can talk to their parents no matter what. This also means listening. Forgiveness is another key, bad feelings need to be resolved and saying I’m sorry is different than saying, please forgive me.

Links to other podcasts on forgiveness:

Forgiveness: An explanation and solutions.

Asking for forgiveness – the key to healing.

Lastly, be appreciative of your family and happy for what God has put together. We do not have a choice in the children we are given but the ultimate Creator of the Universe knows and has carefully selected you – and me to be the parents of the amazing children He gives us. We can be appreciative of our kids and work on encouraging them but it takes an effort. Words are cheap, people, and we can use our words to uplift or tear people down. Uplifting is so much better!

 

 

Spiritual Discernment

Spiritual Discernment ~ Episode 100

Spiritual Discernment | The gift of spiritual discernment is one we all need! It allows us to see the truth to avoid darkness and to be ready for what is in store for those who love the Lord. | #podcast #christianpodcast #spiritualgifts #UCPNThe gift of spiritual discernment is one we all need! It allows us to see the truth to avoid darkness and to be ready for what is in store for those who love the Lord!

Welcome to AFMWG – this is a milestone episode for me – 100! When I began this podcast I had a handful of listeners and I believed the Lord wanted me to continue, even if I could fit all of you in my living room! However, as this show has grown in the number of listeners I am blessed by the power of God and some of you have given me feedback on what this show means to you – thank-you. If the Lord has helped me to help one person then this show has been worth it.

How do you connect to me? Via social media – we have a FB group for this network, look for the Ultimate Christian Podcast Network. You can also comment on our website at AFewMinutesWithGodPodcast.com – each show has it’s own post where we are open for comments.

And, please share this podcast with a friend to keep us growing and give me a star rating on your favorite podcast app. Thank you again for being a listener.

Thanks to our sponsor OvercomerMovie.com

I was chatting with some moms that were talking about seeing a miraculous manifestation. Some thought it looked evil, others thought it was a miracle, a sign from God. Friends, in this case, we need discernment. Why did God perform miracles? He did this to increase the faith of those who saw Him do this, it is to increase our own personal faith. The importance of the gift of discernment could take up the next ten episodes of A Few Minutes With God Podcast! The gift of discernment keeps us from evil. Discernment allows us to see right and wrong, it allows us to recognize a sign that is not from God.

Back when I was learning about the gifts of the Holy Spirit the one gift I didn’t want was anything that had to do with discerning evil. I was young in my missionary walk with the Lord, in other words, I believed I loved the Lord and followed Him, but it was a personal journey – I would never consider doing a podcast or ever talking about anything religious in any sense of the word! Why didn’t I want the gift? Because I was afraid of evil. When we are strong in the Lord there is no need to fear. My mother use to say the devil was the size of an ant and the Lord the size of the entire world, and she is right! Jesus has already won the battle, and he has been victorious so what do we need to fear?

Holy Spirit Podcast here

There was an instance in my life when I met a person and I could sense evil. Don’t ask me how, I could, and it made me shudder. I warned one of my son’s about this person because he had to work closely with her on a ranch and he was very kind and could easily be swayed. Some things happened that caused him to feel the intuition I had was right and he came to me to talk about it, it turned out leaving a job was the best way to deal with the situation.

This “feeling” or “intuition” or gift has happened to me time and time again. It is something you can pray for and ask the Lord to give us and you will find it is one of the biggest blessings!

Starting with 1 Kings 3:11 when God said to Solomon that he didn’t ask for riches, or for the life of his enemies but for discernment to know what is right all the way to 1 Corinthians 12:10 discernment has been sought after by followers.

Proverbs 16:21 – The wise of heart is esteemed for discernment, and pleasing speech gains a reputation for learning.

1 John 5:20 – We also know that the Son of God has come and has given us discernment to know the one who is true. And we are in the one who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.

In 1 Corinthians the gifts of the Holy Spirit are layed out and especially in 10 we read, “…to another mighty deeds; to another prophecy; to another discernment of spirits; to another varieties of tongues; to another interpretation of tongues.”

To grow in the gifts of discernment we need to pray for the help of the Holy Spirit, ask for the spiritual gifts of knowledge and understanding, and continue to read and study the Scriptures. Get connected to a church, and be sure to keep your eyes on Christ.

Friends, these gifts strengthen us in our walk with the Lord!

Let’s Pray For the Gift of Spiritual Discernment

Dear Father, I ask for an infilling of Your Holy Spirit, please give me the gift of discernment, please help me on my spiritual journey and I ask for the following prayer intentions… Father if it is in your will please answer my prayers, and I pray this in Jesus Name. Amen.

Gifts of the Holy Spirit

Gifts of the Holy Spirit | The gifts of the Holy Spirit are real and free and available to all. At Pentecost, the disciples were able to speak in different languages and those who heard them understood. | #podcast #christianpodcast #holyspiritGifts of the Holy Spirit Episode 99

The gifts of the Holy Spirit are real and free and available to all. At Pentecost, the disciples were able to speak in different languages and those who heard them understood. The disciples were taught by the Holy Spirit in other ways as well, by reminding them what Jesus had taught them. Remember, they learned from the Lord but often did not understand what he meant. (John 14:26) We even read passages where Mary buried things in her heart. And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart. Luke 2:19

The Holy Spirit allowed them to remember and bring God’s word with them wherever they went and any time they wanted it, it was available to them to use as they became missionaries for the Lord. I once read an analogy of how the information we have today available to us at a push of a button via our cell phones is similar to what the apostles must have felt when they had access to the gifts of the spirit.

Starting with 1 Kings 3:11 when God said to Solomon that he didn’t ask for riches, or for the life of his enemies but for discernment to know what is right all the way to 1 Corinthians 12:10 discernment has been sought after by followers.

Proverbs 16:21 – The wise of heart is esteemed for discernment, and pleasing speech gains a reputation for learning.

1 John 5:20 – We also know that the Son of God has come and has given us discernment to know the one who is true. And we are in the one who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.

What is impactful is the following verse in 1 Corinthians 1:10 – “…to another mighty deeds; to another prophecy; to another discernment of spirits; to another varieties of tongues; to another interpretation of tongues. ”

Holy Spirit Podcast here

Please read all of 1 Corinthians 12 –

The overall purpose was to teach the believers that when they were pagans they were attracted to the way of the idols and that it was difficult to resist sin. god sent us the Holy Spirit so that we could use these gifts, which are many to be steadfast, to have wisdom and discernment.

1 Corinthians 12, verse four talks about the different spiritual gifts but the same Spirit.

Gifts of the Holy Spirit
Wisdom
Understanding
Counsel
Fortitude
Knowledge
Piety
Fear of the Lord

Wisdom is considered the first and the greatest of the gifts.

Understanding helps us to realize the importance of God as the Almighty, opens our eyes to the spiritual and allows us to read and understand Scripture

Fortitude has to do with courage, and also endurance

Knowledge: The gift of knowledge allows one, as far as is humanly possible, to see things from God’s perspective. It “allows us to perceive the greatness of God and his love for his creatures” through creation.[24]

Piety is the awe of God and the understanding of our own weaknesses – this virtue can be overused in the sense of condemning others and become judgemental.

Fear of the Lord is an understanding of the awesomeness of Almighty God.

 

Raising Great Kids In One Easy Lesson

Raising Great Kids | We want to raise great kids that we are proud of, let’s face it isn’t that hard, or is it? In today’s podcast, we discuss raising great kids and how it really can be done in one easy lesson! | #podcast #christianfamilies #greatkids #parenting #UCPNRaising Great Kids In One Easy Lesson! Episode 16

We want to raise great kids that we are proud of, let’s face it isn’t that hard, or is it? In today’s podcast, we discuss raising great kids and how it really can be done in one easy lesson!

Thanks to today’s sponsor – OvercomerMovie – don’t miss the family-friendly handout on the website.

I’ve parented since 1980 when my first child was born. If you do the math you can see it is quite a few years. My five children are all different, and my eight grandchildren have the same trait, they are unique. So what do parents do with all of these different little personalities God has gifted them with?

From my experience with my own children, teaching other children and speaking to hundreds of parents of children it is one of two things with everything in between. We spoil them, we are harsh disciplinarians or we fall somewhere right of center, or left of center, or the worse, in the center.

Raising Great Kids by Example

In a nutshell, if you want to raise great kids it takes modeling good behavior and dealing with bad behavior. I believe that God created man to be good, his Creation (read Genesis) was all about seeing that what He created was good. Sure we are tempted and sure our kids tend to protect self over others, but if we believe our kids have goodness in them, that is helpful!

We must model the behavior and encourage our children to do the same. We want our children to have honorable values, be respectful, love God, and be happy.

The problems begin to happen when we don’t correct behavior that is not acceptable. I think one of the biggest issues is when kids lie. I know for some of us lying is the ultimate sin and we can’t handle it when our kids are less than truthful. But what about us? Do we lie? Do we always tell our kids the truth?

The erosion begins when our kids hear things (and our kids have great hearing when they want to!) and they begin to lie.

Have you ever caught your child in a lie and they vehemently argue that you are wrong? (Story about being a kid and this happening to me.) It was a God moment in my life.

Issues with Raising Great Kids May Stem From:

  1. Uncorrected behavior
  2. Making excuses for our kids
  3. Being too understanding

Our kids will soon learn that they can get away bad behavior and that my friends is why we see kids that are brats, we especially see this in other people’s children!

Take a hard look, and look within:

  1. Can your children handle disappointment?
  2. How do your kids do when you discipline them?
  3. Is your child me focused?
  4. Does your child blame others?
  5. Does your child take responsibility or apologize?

Look at yourself:

  1. Do you deal with lies for example when they happen?
  2. Do you have a clear cut disciplinary procedure?
  3. Do you make excuses for misbehavior to yourself or others?
  4. Do you blame others?
  5. Do you expect your child to make restitution?

If your children are little that is the best time to begin teaching our children the difference between right and wrong. We should never discipline in anger. Our kids need to realize we love them but we will not put up with bad behavior. Yes, talk to your children but be sure there is a punishment that will deter future problems. I usually pray when I am at a loss of what to do! Prayer has helped me tremendously in dealing with situations that I felt were out of my control or I felt the usual discipline wasn’t going to work.

The idea of discipline is to get better results, so if the results are not changing you need a change!

You cannot raise great kids alone, it takes being on your knees and understanding that ultimately God is in charge! God gave us these blessings and He handpicked YOU as the perfect parent for your child, whether you believe this or not you are the perfect parent. We all make mistakes but each day is a new day!

 

 

Promises To Abraham

Promises To Abraham | When we read Genesis we learn, soon after the fall that all is not lost. We have hope in the promises to Abraham, from God. All is not lost and we know that through Abraham came the lineage to David and through David the lineage to Joseph and in essence to Jesus. | #podcast #homeschoolpodcastPromises To Abraham – Episode 98

When we read Genesis we learn, soon after the fall that all is not lost. We have hope in the promises to Abraham, from God. All is not lost and we know that through Abraham came the lineage to David and through David the lineage to Joseph and in essence to Jesus.

We learn so many things, yet one fact remains, Abraham (Abram) doubted. It resonates with me and it should resonate with all of us that we as a fallen people can not possibly understand the mind of God. God entrusts man to carry on His will and man in turns often fails. Even those who are considered by scripture to be righteous.

Promises to Abraham:

  1. Fear not (echoes what the angel Gabriel told Mary – “Fear not…”)
  2. The Word of God came to Abram
  3. A servant would not be his heir but his own flesh and blood.
  4. “Look up at the sky and count the stars—if indeed you can count them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” (Genesis 15:5)
  5. Genesis 15:18 “To your descendants I give this land, from the Wadi of Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates.”
  6. God’s promise and blessings were to be upon Isaac who would be blessed with a huge lineage as well. (Isaac’s name would be changed to Israel and the Twelve Tribes of Israel was his heritage.)

God’s Promises To Abraham

God’s promises to Abraham still come even though Abram did not wait! While it is difficult for us to understand this since our ways are so different now, it was acceptable back then to take on other “wives.” Sarai his wife told him to sleep with her slave, Hagar and Abram agreed.
God protected Hagar because she carried the son of Abraham. The angel appeared to her in the desert and told her she would name her son Ishmael.

This is one of the hardest things for me to read, that Abram who heard directly from God did not wait upon the Lord. Friends, how often do we do this? Not wait even though we know we should? This is something to meditate upon and journal. The entire section of the Bible that deals with Abraham and his life is filled with mishap, sometimes lies and always forgiveness from God.

The promises to Abraham include Abraham’s request, God agreed to bless Ishmael He would be the father of twelve rulers and he agreed to make him into a great nation.
But God’s covenant was for Abraham and the blessings would ultimately fall upon Isaac (Israel).

We learn about God’s ways as He “cleans” house by destroying Sodom and Gomorrah.

God’s judgment is always rooted in truth and righteousness.

The key in these scriptures for me is to wait upon the Lord. Remembering that His time is not our time.

Mary Mother of Jesus

Mary Mother of Jesus | Mary, Mother of Jesus is known throughout humanity, nations and time. We can learn so much from her! Most Christians know her name and read about her in the Bible. | #podcast #christianpodcast #MadonnaMary Mother of Jesus – Episode 97

Mary, Mother of Jesus is known throughout humanity, nations and time. We can learn so much from her! Most Christians know her name and read about her in the Bible. She receives a staring role in the New Testament that begins with humble roots, becomes elevated by her, “Yes,” to the Angel, Gabrielle – the spokesperson for Almighty God and culminates in the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Thanks to our sponsor, Bridgestone Academy.  Learn more information at HomeschoolAcademy.com

Why are we discussing Mary – as I record this it isn’t anywhere near Christmas when people consider Mary’s part in redemption history as they set out a Nativity scene perhaps to commemorate the birth of Christ. Yet, I believe that Mary is more than that and we need to take a closer look. She is a kindred spirit. She suffered as we suffer, she felt compassion, loved, trusted God and she is our example.

Mary is known by many names, she is known as Mary Mother of Jesus, she is known as the Virgin Mary, as Theotokos in Greek  -Mary Mother of Jesus or in Easter Christianity and the Latin translation is Mother of God or God’bearer

Yet, while the Bible talks so little of Mary. We know her by her attributes:

  • She was a willing servant
  • She trusted God
  • Mary Obeyed God’s call
  • Mary had great suffering in her life

Can you imagine being a poor girl and learning that you were chosen by God for a great task? As a young Jewish girl, Mary must have learned as all the children did that they were awaiting a Messiah, a Savior to free them from Roman rule. She learned the Old Testament and she must have known about Isaiah and the prediction that a young virgin would bear a son, and he would be named Emmanuel which means God with us. Read all of Isiah 7 but the verse I will read to you is at follows and begins in verse 10-15

Emmanuel – God is With Us: Isiah 7: 10-15

When Mary was approached by the angel she didn’t say – “I’m sorry you’ve got the wrong person, didn’t you take a wrong turn at a castle somewhere?” No – she said, “Let it be done to me according to your Word.” She said yes.

How often do we feel like God asks us to do something and we are conflicted. As I’ve shared with you its happened to me often. Yet, Mary was from a poor and humble family. Luke 1:38

The Infancy Narrative is in the Scriptures and you can read the entire verses in Luke 1:1-50 read this in your Bible and think about the words and what they mean. How can you apply this to your life? Luke 1:26-45 especially announces the birth of Jesus to Mary by the angel Gabriel. He was sent by God, and Mary humble servant said, “Yes.” She then visited her cousin Elizabeth. She was unselfish. And the visit turned out to be a blessing when Elizabeth greeted Mary. “Most blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.” (Luke 1:42)

Mary Filled with the Holy Spirit: Responded with, “My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my savior.” Luke 1:46-47  Mary needed a Savior, and her son was the Savior.

For many of us these verses are so familiar and if they are not for you – go back and revisit them, take your time, journal about them. While they are often read around Christmastime, it is so important we take time now to study them now.

God sent His Son for us – and God picked a humble lady. Now, Joseph’s lineage we read is from the house of David with a direct lineage to Abraham, this is very important and not the topic of today’s podcast. However, know that because of prophecy and the fulfillment of prophecy

First known miracle -wedding feast of Cana – do what he tells you.
Mary reminds us that Jesus serves our needs – but we must be obedient to Him.

She was present in the days before Pentecost and she was there at the foot of the cross

A woman of great courage and self-giving – went to visit Elizabeth to help her!

Isaiah 7:14 speaks of the Virgin Mother of Emmanuel
“Virgin-Mother of Emmanuel”: “Therefore, the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and His name shall be called Emmanuel.”

Emmanuel means God with us

The child – Jesus, would be a

Luke 1:46-49 – My soul magnifies the Lord …

Greatest of all saints – chosen by God, prepared by God to be the mother of his son – His divinity at the Council of Nicea was determined by defining his mother. Was Jesus half man and half God – God his human form from May and his Divinity from God or was he fully man and God – all as one?
Mary was called Mother of God –

Mary was immaculate by an act of God at the time she was conceived so that she would be sinless and therefore a worthy vessel

God gave Mary so many wonderful attributes of Grace
She is the symbol of hope, obedience, and pointing us constantly to her son – do what he tells you. Her life is a witness to the Glory of Jesus

Is Mary Mother of Jesus a Kindred Spirit?

Image Attribution:
Giovanni Battista Salvi da Sassoferrato [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Giovanni Battista Salvi da Sassoferrato – http://www.bridgemanartondemand.com/art/104827/The_Madonna_in_Sorrow

Mindful Kids

Mindful Kids Being present for your kids and having mindful kids is the topic of today's podcast. The last episode of One More Child Podcast we discussed mindfulness and being present. | #podcast #christianpodcastMindful Kids – Teaching Kids To Be Present Episode 15

Being present for your kids and having mindful kids is the topic of today’s podcast. The last episode of One More Child Podcast we discussed mindfulness and being present.

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels, Inc. check out the latest book One More Child on Amazon, to receive a free chapter check out MediaAngels.com for more information.

*Please note: the education system has hijacked the term mindfulness to make it into an new age propaganda, filling kids heads with nonsense, asking kids to “empty their minds,” so the system can fill it with the negative (to a Christian, anyway.) This show focuses on the now – with God, as a Christian. It is in no way linked to anything not of God, as God created our minds and God is in this present moment.

God made us different in the sense of likes and dislikes, personality and how we demonstrate our love for each other. So many things in our lives are distracting and our focus is on our phones, the things on our to-do list and what we need to do tomorrow. We miss the details of today.

Look around when you go out to dinner. People are on their phones instead of talking to each other. No one is talking or laughing or discussing the events of the day.

Mindful Kids Know:

  1. You are there for them now.
  2. We care (show it instead of just using words).
  3. To be present. Do not judge or criticize.
  4. Learn to appreciate the now.

Our kids remember things differently than we do as adults. When my children get in trouble I often ask them if they know why they are in trouble. Many times they do not know or the reason they say the wrong reason. This is one of those areas you can work through and help them to understand the real reason.

We should teach our kids to live each day as if it is our last. Do this exercise with your kids.

What would you do if this was your last day?

  1. What would you do or say?
  2. Don’t worry about the future.
  3. Enjoy each thing – taste, drink and enjoy the sights around you.
  4. Appreciate your environment.
  5. Focus on each other.
  6. Appreciate the moment.
  7. Realize God is in this present moment.

 

Model Christian

Model Christian | Being a model Christian requires responsibility, but what does a model Christian look like? Is it someone who talks the talk or walks the walk. As a Christian, you can no longer act like a heathen and there is a standard to uphold – or is there? | #podcast #christianpodcast Model Christian Episode 97

Being a model Christian requires responsibility, but what does a model Christian look like? Is it someone who talks the talk or walks the walk. As a Christian, you can no longer act like a heathen and there is a standard to uphold – or is there?

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels, Inc. check out the latest book One More Child on Amazon, to receive a free chapter check out MediaAngels.com for more information.

Some believe that becoming a Christian requires a statement of faith – and acceptance of the Lord in a prayer, a declaration, perhaps an altar call they believe it is a one-time thing that is forever and there is never anything you can do after that that alters that commitment if it is done willingly and with an open heart. Others believe that the model Christian is someone who honors the church teachings, receiving the sacraments of Baptism, Communion, and Confirmation. Of frequent confessions and attending church on Sunday. Some think it is a combination of the two and others may think just being good is the way to be a model Christian.

So many people who have been held in high esteem – those who are pastors or tele-evangelists have fallen in horrible ways – those who believed they had the answers were left shocked and hurting. Friends, we can never place our hope in man – no matter how eloquently he/or she speaks, We read about failings each and every day,  whether it is about financial sin or sexual sin – it is a betrayal not only in their own life but in those whom they serve.

Our hope is only in God. The model Christian examples are given so beautifully in the story of the first person to die for his faith.

We learn in the scriptures that being a model Christian has a price, we can no longer be the same. Being a disciple means living a life that models Christ, that is selfless, generous, charitable to our neighbors, some have even suffered for their faith and were put to death. There are places even today where those who are Christians are killed in the same way as in the time of the apostles. The first martyr we read about is Stephen. He was sharing the truth – what it meant to be a model Christian – but his words infuriated the Sanhedrin –just like when Jesus shared the truth and the teaching was too hard for them to believe.

Read and study all of Acts 7:29-70.

As he was dying he echoed the words of Christ – he cried, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit,”

Jesus said in Luke 23:46  Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit”; and when he had said this he breathed his last.

He also said “Lord do not hold this sin against them” an echo of the Lord who said,

(Acts 7:60) and in Luke 23:34  Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.”

Stephen paid the price of being a model Christian – he did not back down and say, “Oh, sorry, didn’t mean to offend you, just forget everything I said and have a nice day.”

Instead, Stephen is a true model of anyone who wants to follow Christ, who wants to be one with the Lord – who wants to know that we pay a price by being a Christian. Just think of what it is like today if you believe as I do that life begins at conception – you will be shouted down for being pro-life. You will be called all kinds of vile names, you will be accused of being narrow-minded and a stupid. What price do we pay to do what is right?

Christians are still the majority but we have been silenced and until recently have not stood up for ourselves but this is no longer true. We have been shut out and shunned but we are now called in a greater way in a world of darkness to stand up for our faith, our beliefs and for our Christ. Revelations 22:12 states, Whatever the price we pay, we are assured in the end to receive recompense according to our deeds. Behold, I am coming soon. I bring with me the recompense I will give to each according to his deeds.

We pray –

Dear Lord Jesus, come, please come. We are at a time when evil is considered good and good evil and I know it is much the same as in your day the time you walked the earth. We as Christians need model Christians as examples to us – we need saints of today that will encourage us to be all that we can be and to be fearless to stand up for our beliefs and call evil – evil and good – good. Lord fill us with your Holy Spirit so that we can have the grace to do what is right. Dear Lord, we ask for the following prayer requests… please hear our prayers and answer them if it is in your perfect will and we pray this in your precious Name, Amen.

 

 

 

Mindfulness – Being In The Present Moment

Mindfulness | By a God-incident, I recently stumbled upon an audio book on mindfulness, being in the present moment. It spoke to me in a way that I can not describe. | #podcast #christianpodcastMindfulness – Being In The Present Moment – Episode 14

By a God-incident, I recently stumbled upon an audio book on mindfulness, being in the present moment. It spoke to me in a way that I can not describe. Parts of the book had cautioned that we might not be happy with what we were hearing, but truthfully I was praising God for the God-incidence in the ability to hear something I craved.

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels, Inc. check out the latest book One More Child on Amazon, to receive a free chapter check out MediaAngels.com for more information.

When we are not mindful:

  1. Info overload: We are overcome by so much information in our lives and being in the moment is something most people struggle with, myself included
  2. Restless sleep When it was quiet my racing mind caused my thoughts to become scattered. In this podcast we will discuss Are you one of those people who are exhausted but can’t sleep because your mind is racing?
  3. Arriving at a destination when you had no idea how you got there.
  4. Praying and not remembering what you were saying.
  5. Talking to someone and not sure what is being said.

Our minds seem to have a life of their own and we are overcome with thoughts many that are negative in our lives. Mindfulness allows you to be in the moment and I will share with you how important this is for anyone who professes Christianity.

Why am I sharing this with you?

  1. It can make you really understand yourself.
  2. It is not psycho mumbo jumbo – it makes sense in that we are trusting God.
  3. It can change your life by not allowing negativity (yourself or others towards you) from affecting you or letting it rule your life.
  4. It can help you to corral overwhelming thoughts
  5. It can make you happier!

Sounds like a win-win!

Mindfulness is a psychological term for what is truthfully a Christian principle.

  1. The Lord lives forever
  2. God is here in this present moment.
  3. God was not created.
  4. God is eternal.
  5. Grace abounds where God is – and He is now – He is here.

Simple right?

Some basic tenants of mindfulness is to be in the present moment without judgment or criticism.

Movie – Percy Jackson – ate the lotus flower and didn’t realize how much time has gone by –

Our lives are wasted by negative thoughts. What is going to happen today, tomorrow, twenty years from now? This happened to me when I learned my oldest was learning delayed I couldn’t imagine what his life would be like with a handicap and NOW I know that I worried for no reason. All that  I imagined was false.

Being mindful is taking charge of harmful thoughts and realizing that what MIGHT come also might not come. Does this mean we never think or plan – absolutely not! Of course, we do, however, we must realize the reality that our thoughts do not define who we are.

  • Just for today realize that God is here, now. It is a grace-filled moment!
  • If you have trouble sleeping because your mind is racing, get up – get a drink of water, go to the restroom – lay back down, and pray. Thank God for the time to pray for someone else. Sometimes that little bit of movement helps.
  • When you feel like you are in a situation (thoughts overwhelming you or life) breathe. Recently – share DMV story –
  • Realize you are NOT your thoughts –if there are negative thoughts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Presence of God

Presence of God | For a Christian the presence of God is an amazing feeling and even without that feeling we have faith that God is with us always. How we understand God’s presence? We will look at the Scriptures for clarification during this episode. | #podcast #christianpodcast #christianPresence of God – Episode 96

For a Christian, the presence of God is an amazing feeling and even without that feeling, we have faith that God is with us always. How do we understand God’s presence? We will look at the Scriptures for clarification during this episode.

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels, Inc. check out the latest book One More Child on Amazon, to receive a free chapter check out MediaAngels.com for more information.

The ascension of our Lord is talked about in the Scriptures and often we don’t give it more than a passing thought. Yes, Jesus lived, died and rose from the dead, yes Jesus ascended into heaven after forty days – yet this was the first time after the birth of Jesus that the presence of our Lord was no longer physically present. His apostles felt what we feel today – we can’t just turn around and say, “Lord, what do we do?”

We have spent our entire life in this way. Each one of us has a different story about how we came to learn about God. Maybe you chanced on listening to this podcast and you don’t really know God or believe if He even exists. Maybe you learned about God from your parents and are not sure He is real enough to you – maybe you believe but still, have many questions.

Each of us didn’t know God at one time of our lives – we all began one day at a time, one Bible story or Scripture verse or someone sharing the God news about God that really loved Him and wanted to share what God had done in their life. Faith is a gift if you have faith never discount it or consider it unimportant – you have faith because God has called you by name. You grow in your faith because you take the time to pray, spend time with God in quiet, read the Bible, go to church, surround yourself with Christian readings, or podcasts. You grow your faith by believing but also by doing something about your belief.

Think about this – our lives even those who are not Christians surround two major Biblical events. Christmas (the birth of Christ) and Easter (the resurrection of Christ). Even if the world has tried to secularize these holidays (Winter Break, Spring Break, etc.) we Christians really understand the meaning and significance. Our lives have been impacted by these events and especially the ascension of Christ into heaven.

I’d love for you to Read Acts 1 yourself – especially Acts 1: 1:12

The power of the Holy Spirit was poured on the apostles in order for them to be given the strength to be witnesses at a time that being a Christian was a death sentence – but I love this part when the Angels – two men in white garments questioned the apostles and said, “Why are you looking at the sky?” – in other words, get going you have work to do!

They carried on their mission. Do we carry on our missions in the same way – do we make haste as those in the scriptures do to share the words of everlasting life? They were like us – men and women living their lives, eating, sleeping trying to make the best of things. They had the one advantage over us – they had witnessed Christ in their midst!

Yet, we are just like them in many ways. We have our doubts, our trials, our problems that bog us down daily. But we also have hope and without hope, the human condition is doomed. We have hope for a better tomorrow, hope that everything will work out fine, hope that God is with us today – He is here in this present grace-filled moment to give us encouragement and the blessings to face even our harshest challenges. We are called in our baptism to be the witnesses of Christ’s love and providence. We are in a time that shuns all that is holy – a time where evil is called good and good evil. Now, friends, it is our time to be that light for a hurting world.

Call To Action:

  1. Spend time in prayer and quiet with the Lord.
  2. Seek the Word of God – fill yourself up with the wonderful words of the Bible each and every day.
  3. Ask the Lord how He wants to use you each day. Is there someone lonely that needs a smile or a helping hand? All little things are mighty if they are done with a spirit of love and humility for God.

Some people just look at things as in the “what is in it for me,” and never try to look at how they can bless others. Maybe your burdens are too heavy right now to care for others – but if that is the case, that my friends is how the Lord is using you – to minister to your needs or those of your family. Selfishness is never a right but it can be changed and it happens slowly and with purpose.

Sometimes we get complacent, God doesn’t need me He has so many others so much more capable (friends, this is what goes through my head when I get ready to sit down and podcast). Why am I doing this – I am no one – why me Lord, why me? And, the answer I get is that He asked and I said yes.

What are you saying yes to? Have you prayed and said, Lord how can I help, or are you standing around looking up into the sky and wondering where are you, Lord?

He is here. He is now. This my dear friends is a grace-filled moment… understand it and believe.

Dear Lord, I thank you for all that you did during your time on earth so that your actions, your words, your miracles, and even your death and resurrection could be read about so many years later. I thank you for the gift of faith, for ascending into heaven so that through not only Baptism of water but also of the Holy Spirit we can be filled with the grace to share the good news with others. Dear Lord, I ask you today how you would use me, please Lord help me to understand your will for me and the ways I can let others know more about your goodness and mercy. Dear Lord, I pray for the following intentions … please hear my prayers and help me in the answers, and I pray this in Jesus Name. Amen.

Faith, Family And Holy Spirit

Faith & Family | When my faith in the Lord grew I knew I was a new creation, but I didn't realize the effect of faith and family as a life-changing event. In this episode, I will share how my faith in the Lord caused my husband and I to grow from trusting ourselves to trusting God. | #Podcast #christianpodcast #faithandfamily Faith and Family Episode 13

When my faith in the Lord grew I knew I was a new creation, but I didn’t realize the effect of faith and family as a life-changing event. In this episode, I will share how my faith in the Lord caused my husband and I to grow from trusting ourselves to trusting God.

Sponsor:

I often recommend that people keep a prayer diary for many reasons, but one of the biggest is to see your spiritual growth. We did all the right things as a family. We went to church together, we prayed before meals, we prayed each evening before bedtime. We attended religious retreats and went to spiritual teachings at Church. We thought we were on the right track in our lives and with God.

I loved the Lord – I had followed Him my entire life – but I soon realized as my faith grew that I was following Him on my terms. Wow. That was a time to sit back and to re-evaluate my life.

It came after becoming aware of the workings of the Holy Spirit not only in the time of the apostles when Jesus said that the Holy Spirit would teach them all things. But also today in our lives today. (A friend shared this with me – she said I could kneel beside my bed and ask for an infilling of the Holy Spirit!)

(John 14:26) But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.

God had other plans for me – and I was invited to hear a friend’s teaching on one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit. I soon remembered reading in the Bible the gifts of the Holy Spirit which are: wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord. This teaching was called a Life in the Spirit Seminar.

I wanted all of the gifts! I wanted the Lord to come into my life and guide me as He did the apostles. My heart was ready and so was I! The Lord surrounded me with committed Christians in my homeschool friends and in my extended friends that I met through Church. We were invited to a Bible Study and guess what we studied? Acts of the Apostles. All of these things combined changed my life.

I was more understanding as a parent, more loving and kind. I was calmer and my husband noticed a change in me, as well as my parents who lived nearby. In fact, my parents were so amazed at the change they saw in me and then my husband they wanted to learn more so they attended a Life in the Spirit Seminar to learn more about the Holy Spirit and soon joined a Charismatic Prayer Group.

Faith is contagious when you share the good news and share your faith not so much with words but with actions. When I wrote my book I thought my story was about the decision my husband and I made to extend our family size, but as I continued to write the book and the pieces came together, I realized it was a story about my growth in faith and the outcome of this faith in our decision to have more children. I know I’ve said this before on this podcast that I can’t imagine life without my youngest three children.

The fabric of our lives are known by the Lord, but not by us – we can’t predict our futures, and for that, I am truly thankful. We – you and I get to explore our lives as we live them each day. Praise God that we opened our hearts to more of God’s love – that we believed the Gospel message that the Holy Spirit was instrumental in changing our hearts!

Holy Spirit

Holy Spirit | The Holy Spirit is one of the greatest gifts from God! All we have to do is look at the Gospels and rejoice that God did not leave us alone, He sent His Spirit to be with us always. | #christianpodcast #podcast #faithinGodThe Holy Spirit – A Gift From God – Episode 95

The Holy Spirit is one of the greatest gifts from God! All we have to do is look at the Gospels and rejoice that God did not leave us alone, He sent His Spirit to be with us always.

Jesus promises the apostles that the Holy Spirit will not only guide them but teach them everything they need to know about what they should do. (John 14:26) But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.

There were so many questions the new Christians had at the time. Some of them were life-altering. It is the same with us as Christians. What is acceptible for us to do, and what appears to be a gray area? This is an age-old question and one that even the most committed Christians will argue about. Is it okay to drink if it is socially? Should you go to church – or can you just pray at home? Do you need to go to confession or can you just pray and ask the Lord to forgive you? Some of these answers are specifically found in the Bible and we are blessed that we have this available to us. It is after all thousands of years since our Lord died and rose from the dead to give us everlasting life.

Jesus gave the disciples strict instructions, to preach the Good news to all nations. He did not explain how the Gentiles should live their lives. At the time that these questions came up it was about 50AD and it had been about twenty years since the Lord’s resurrection when he sent them the Holy Spirit to guide them. Yet they were meeting to decide what to do and make the right decisions. They decided the Gentiles needed to follow limited Jewish laws.

The Holy Spirit guides our church today – when men fail – those in leadership it is because they have forgotten the Gospel message. They have failed to take it to their hearts and ask the Lord in every circumstance, big and small. Recently a megachurch suffered a scandal due to mismanagement of funds among other accusations. It is always newsworthy and always disheartening when these things happen. Often there are coverups – those who bring accusations are falsely punished, excommunicated and worse. Their reputations are ruined and they face legal consequences. All of this could be avoided by following the simple instruction from the Lord in Matthew 28:19, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”

Why do we forget about the Holy Spirit? Because we are distracted by our schedules, by the things of this world, by those who do not mean nearly as much to our eternal life as the Lord. How can we make disciples of all nations when we can’t even manage our own household? Friends, we must rely on the infilling of the Holy Spirit and ask Him to come into our lives today. To live within us and to guide us!

What are the gifts of the Holy Spirit? They are wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord.

True story – how the Lord lead me to the Charismatic renewal within the Catholic Church. You can pray for an infilling today!

Dear Lord, we praise you for this time together to think about you and to worship you – we thank you for your gift of the Holy Spirit the third person of the Trinity. Come Holy Spirit Come and fill the hearts of the faithful! Dear Lord, I ask you to allow those listening today to understand the power of the Holy Spirit and how it can help them in their life. Give them the gifts of wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord. Dear Lord help us to realize that the Holy Spirit is here to guide us and to help us in our daily walk with you. If we have a need or a worry allow the Holy Spirit to fill our heart and guide us. Allow us to test all spirits that they are holy and righteous and do not allow us to be deceived by the evil one. Dear Jesus, thank you for listening and please hear and answer the following prayer requests:

We pray this in Jesus precious Name, Amen.

Vasectomy Reversal Reality

Vasectomy Reversal Reality | Open to life was a term I never heard of before but that became the outcome when the vasectomy reversal reality hit. | #podcast #christianpodcast #vasectomyreversalVasectomy Reversal Reality – Episode

Open to life was a term I never heard of before but that became the outcome when the vasectomy reversal reality hit. Being open to life described our openness to more children in our family as well as a realization that life is precious and that means all life. The born and the unborn. Children are considered a blessing–or they should be considered a blessing!

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels and the book, One More Child – download a free chapter at MediaAngels.com

In my book, One More Child there are nine chapters that signify each month of pregnancy. One focuses specifically on the event leading us to a vasectomy reversal as well as the reality that came with it.

Life isn’t easy – it is messy. There are things that happen each and every day that challenge even the most faithful. And this is what happened in my life. I go into this more in my book, but suffice it to say that I was not always open to more children. In fact, my husband and I made the decision to have a vasectomy – but later, after I believe my eyes were open to the love and providence of what God has in store for my life, my husband had a Vasectomy reversal.

A vasectomy seems to be a much easier choice for most families than a vasectomy reversal. One gets praise and wide approval while the other is looked upon with disdain. Even the doctor who was scheduled to do the procedure wasn’t in favor! Friends, if you are a parent I get it – we are tired, we have so much going on in our lives, and kids are expensive! So, why do it? In our case, it was a decision of obedience. We felt that the Lord was leading us in this direction. We wanted to be open to whatever God had for our lives and that included in our ability to have children.

Vasectomy Reversal Reality vs. Myths

Reality vs. Myth #1 

Most families can afford a vasectomy but not a vasectomy reversal. While this is true to some extent there is much that can be said with research! We priced the reversal and found that it was going to cost over $10K including travel. That meant leaving our family and telling our extended family, our babysitters, something we were not prepared to do! It ended up costing us a little under 2K with a local doctor only two hours away. Some people have lowered the cost by offering to pay cash.

Reality vs. Myth #2

Recovery is long. It depends on the person, but our situation had my husband back at work after the weekend. He is owner of a construction company and ordered not to lift anything heavy – which he did not, but his recovery was relatively quick.

Reality vs. Myth #3 

Vasectomy reversals don’t always work. While this is true for some, it was not in our case. Even though it had been ten years, we have three more children. We do have one friend whose reversal was unsuccessful, however, they experienced great peace of mind after the procedure was completed, and that is true success. One more thing – for us, it worked rather quickly. I was pregnant with months of the procedure. For others, it may take a full year or longer.

Reality vs. Myth #4

Vasectomy Reversals are required as a Christian. This is an untruth. My situation is a long story – which lead me to a book for others who struggle as I did. However, I do not believe if you had a vasectomy you must have a vasectomy reversal. It is between you and God and your pastor. Most Christian pastors have opted for vasectomies in their own life. As a Catholic, it is not permitted, and therefore confession and speaking to your pastor is important. If you believe God is leading you to a vasectomy reversal, speak to your spouse!

Vasectomy reversal to us meant to encourage more kids. I realize that a big family is expensive, but I have watched our own situation with five children and the downturn of the economy. How was I going to pay for college for my youngest three? The Lord provided for the youngest two who opted for a college with a scholarship! (Thanks to Jean Burk with CollegePrepGenius.com/podcast – listen in if you want to learn more).

Big families allow us to become less focused on self-centered activities. We had to think before we headed out to eat, or took a vacation. It wasn’t easy grocery shopping with all the kids, and even with two older and three younger, it was still a challenge. It meant trading in my car for a conversion van and then an SUV. It meant sacrifice. The things of this world – those worldly things are short lived. However love and family are forever or for as long as we are on this earth.

Yes – love and family may mean a sacrifice to some, but not to me. And, if you consider it a sacrifice is short lived. Kids grow up so quickly and when they are gone, you will miss them! I tell parents all the time to hug your babies!

The decision to be open to life opened up questions from complete strangers. Some of our friends who pushed how we had the big age span between our two oldest children and our three youngest also shared their desire for more children and opted for a vasectomy reversal as well.  I pray that my story is an inspiration and not a condemnation. I also pray that the Lord leads you to peace, not matter what your decision. Until we meet again.

Overcoming Religious Persecution

Religious Persecution | Who would have thought that religious persecution would come to the shores of America? We know about persecution happening to all faiths in foreign lands, but on our soil? | #podcast #christianpodcastOvercoming Religious Persecution – Episode 94

Who would have thought that religious persecution would come to the shores of America? We know about persecution happening to all faiths in foreign lands, but on our soil? In this episode, we take a brief look at the persecution of the church in the first century and how our hope rests in Christ. He has Risen!

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels and the book, One More Child – download a free chapter at MediaAngels.com

When we read the scriptures after the death of Jesus we learn that the Jews who believed in Christ and ultimately were called, “Christians” were persecuted in ways we can’t even imagine. Religious persecution came in the form of abuse, verbal and physical. It came in the shunning of people, in crowds shouting, and so much more. Yet every time we read about the religious persecution we are given a sign of hope and reassurance that only comes from the Holy Spirit. While the church thrived in these early years it was in the midst of adversity.

When Christianity broke away from Judaism the religious and state authorities targeted these believers on both sides. Paul and Barnabas were expelled from Antioch in Pisidia and this was a form of religious persecution. You can read the full version in Acts 12:25-13:52.

Barnabas and Saul Are Sent Off On A Mission For God:

  1. Barnabas and Saul finished their mission and returned to Jerusalem
  2. While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.
  3. After they fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off.

Religious Persecution In Antioch:

  • On the Sabbath they entered the synagogue and read from the Law and the Prophets, the leaders of the synagogue sent word to them, saying, “Brothers, if you have a word of exhortation for the people, please speak.” 
  • Standing up, Paul read the Scriptures and then rebuked them.

As we know the people asked for a King and he gave them Saul from the tribe of Benjamin, who ruled for 40 years – and as we know the scriptures talk about how Saul and his failures and that of his sons – then David became King, and verse 22 states:

And it continues – Jesus brought us the message of salvation and the people of Jerusalem and their rules condemned him which was a fulfillment of the prophets – they had no crime to try him with – yet they crucified Him anyway.

The Answer to Religious Persecution: 

The answer to religious persecution is the example Paul and Barnabas gave us – they were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit. They were not angry or resentful, they did not fear and despair. Why? Because God was with them and in them.

We know that true joy – the kind that surpasses all understanding comes from the one true God!

The Romans did not offer their citizens religious liberties and Christians would be killed for rejecting the pagan faith of the Romans. And this is happening on our own shores today. If you want to stand up for your faith you will be persecuted. It has become more difficult to take a religious exemption for your beliefs.

Religious Persecution Today:

The liberties of Christians have been attacked worldwide, but now on our own shores. Turn on the news and you can hear this on a daily basis 24/7. If you are a conservative you are narrow-minded, bigoted or worse. Many Christian speakers have been run off of college campuses, they are not allowed to present an opposing view in a place where we should be able to express our differences. Political parties are at each other’s throats. Our rights to claim religious exemptions are being thwarted. Did you know that it is extremely difficult to get a religious exemption – but you can get a medical exemption?

But friends – we have hope! We should not worry or fear. Just like Paul and Barnabas whose lives were on the line, they trusted in the providence of God. John 10:28 – I give them eternal life and they shall never perish! That is what I pray for us.

Dear Lord – you gave us a wonderful example with the holy men and women who preached the good news. You promised not to abandon us, you promised to provide, you promised to give us eternal life. I am grateful Lord for your providence, for your protection and for your Word that remains with us in the Holy Scriptures. Thank you that we have The Bible to read, to learn from and to enjoy. I ask you, Lord, to protect our religious freedoms and our human rights – of the born and unborn. I ask you to watch over us – our families – and our friends. I ask you, Lord, to hear the prayers we pray today … please Lord provide for all we pray for, and I pray this in Jesus Name, Amen.

 

Family Size Struggles

Family Size Struggles | Family size is something you discuss at different times in your life. And, if you have other struggles in your life it may add additional pressure to your decisions. | #podcast #homeschoolpodcastFamily Size Struggles Episode 11

Family size is something you discuss at different times in your life. And, if you have other struggles in your life it may add additional pressure to your decisions. Have you struggled with family size? In this episode, we delve into this topic with faith as our foundation.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels and the book, One More Child – download a free chapter at MediaAngels.com

Topics to consider when discussing family size:

  1. Families struggle over family size.
  2. Family dynamics are considered.
  3. Added pressure from well-meaning family or friends.
  4. Harmful effects of birth control on women. Dr. Janet Smith
  5. Seek outside counsel – pro-life doctor and clergy.

Take responsibility for your decisions about family size. Our faith grows to a point where we want to honor God in everything we do, every decision and every way we can in our lives. We are always under God’s will, but God gives us free will to make our own choices.

 

 

Worthy of Blessings

Worthy of Praise | Are you worthy of blessings? Blessings come to us in different ways and in this episode we will look at the blessings we receive as well as the cost. | #podcast #christianpodcastWorthy of Blessings? Episode 93

Are you worthy of blessings? Blessings come to us in different ways and in this episode we will look at the blessings we receive as well as the cost.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels and the book, One More Child – download a free chapter at MediaAngels.com

In the book of Revelations 5:12 we read the phrase many of us are familiar with, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches, wisdom and strength, honor and glory and blessings.” I don’t think any of us would argue that Christ is worthy of these blessings. He suffered and died to bring us salvation and this sacrifice has withstood the test of time, The Holy Bible is the most read book in the world.

Who do we consider worthy of blessings in today’s world? Is it someone who has accumulated wealth, someone who is famous or someone we admire for something great they have accomplished? Worthiness is in the eye of those who consider it important. Yet in the time after the Resurrection, we learn that worthiness meant something totally different.

Peter had denied Jesus three times! He was a man that walked with the Lord for many years, who watched him teach, perform miracles and at at the table with him. Yet, this was also a man who did something dishonorable, and he was even warned about it by our Lord – then became a changed man. This change came when he was forgiven.

We read that after the resurrection, the apostles went back to their old way of life and while fishing they noticed a man on the shore — the man asked them if they had caught any fish and they said no. SO he instructed them to throw down their nets yet again (similar to when he first called them to be his apostles). They had fished all night and when morning came they were asked …

Worthy of Blessings

John 21: 1-7

Peter became a new man – he was forgiven! We have hope friends! But with this hope comes the fear and we feel it today. Unborn babies are in even more danger than before with new laws being enacted. Believers who stand up for the rights of the unborn are ridiculed and condemned. Recently a lawmaker did a live stream video of him harassing a lady praying at the sidewalk of an abortion clinic. She was praying for the unborn baby who was about to lose their life – and this man was calling her horrible names and telling her how evil she was.

If you stand for the truth – for the Lord you will be worthy of blessings but also at a price.

When the apostles began to do as Jesus asked they were harassed.

It meant that if you preached in the name of the Lord, you would be condemned by the Sanhedrin – as Jesus was and it was considered an honor.

Read all of Acts from about Acts 5:20-41 -this is where the apostles were captured for preaching and put in jail – when the guards went to get them they found the jail still locked and the men preaching to the crowds.

They rejoiced because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name!

Are we worthy of blessings? Yes, if we are willing to pay the price.

Let’s pray!

Dear Lord God, you are worthy of all praise, all glory, and all honor. I thank you, Lord, for what you have done for me in my life. I love you Lord and I ask that you help me in my faith journey, show me the ways you want me to feed your lambs and tend your sheep. Help me in my process of worthiness and I ask that you walk alongside me each and every day. Make my path straight and righteous Lord! I ask Lord that you hear my prayers for the following people and needs … I praise you, my God, that you hear all of my prayers and answer them as I need them to be answered and I pray this in your Name – Amen.

 

Parenting Under Trial

Parenting Under Trial | Parenting under trial happens to most at some time or another. Parenting, in general, is a skill not for the faint at heart, but when you add a child with some developmentally delayed or ill child the answers can be elusive. | #podcast #christianpodcastParenting Under Trial – Episode 10

Parenting under trial happens to most at some time or another. Parenting, in general, is a skill not for the faint at heart, but when you add a child with some developmentally delayed or ill child the answers can be elusive.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels and the book, One More Child – download a free chapter at MediaAngels.com

Parenting Differently
My husband and I were raised totally opposite and our parenting skills also reflected this in so many ways. I am the disciplinarian and if you are the one in your family then you know you are typically the “fall guy” while the other parent seems to get away without any of the blame.

I am the doer, the researcher, the let’s try this and see if it works because we have a problem. My husband, on the other hand, was oblivious there was even a problem. Having a special son took major patience, something I found myself extremely short on — and my husband had this in droves. he was so patient, so kind, so encouraging. I expected my son to listen to instructions yet wondered at how much he really understood.

Parenting Under Trial

  1. Keeping God around just for emergencies.
  2. Expecting more from our spouse than we are willing to give.
  3. Thinking you know more than your spouse.
  4. Quoting an article or book as an authority.
  5. Undermining your spouse’s discipline.

Parenting with Grace

  1. Pray – pray – pray. Prayer is the answer for everything. Put your children under God’s authority. He will provide.
  2. Parent together discuss first what you would like to do together before you approach your child. Yes, this takes planning.
  3. Realize your spouse does have an opinion and listen. If you disagree explain why with grace and love.
  4. Educate yourself, and share the information you find helpful only if your spouse wants to hear it – or read it himself.
  5. If you disagree with your spouse’s method of parenting or discipline, discuss it later -not in front of the children.

Parenting is a team effort and my husband always says that kids are gamblers. They will take the chance to push the limits

 

Blind Faith vs. Real Faith

Blind Faith vs. Real Faith | Blind faith is not what is required of us. We should question and wonder in our walk with the Lord, but truthfully while we believe without seeing, it is far from blind faith.  #podcast #christianpodcastBlind Faith vs. Real Faith: Episode 92

Blind faith is not what is required of us. We should question and wonder in our walk with the Lord, but truthfully while we believe without seeing, it is far from blind faith. In this episode, we will think back to the time of the Ressurection of Our Lord and what we can learn from the scriptures that can be applied to our lives.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels and the book, One More Child – download a free chapter at MediaAngels.com

Jesus did not call us to blind faith – because he has opened our eyes!

Luke 21-24:

When I think about those who doubted I think about doubting Thomas. I wonder, would I have been any better? I hope the answer is YES!

In John 20:24-29 we read about the way that Jesus appeared to Thomas.

Are we the blessed who have not seen and yet believe? This is something to think about to journal about and to really consider when we look at our lives. In this podcast, I ask a lot of you! And, I’m so happy for all of you who listen, because this is a lesson for us all!

There were many signs and miracles that happened after Jesus rose – and we learn more and more as the story unfolds.

Because of the witness of the faith of the twelve so many people were converted into believers.

In Acts 5: 1-14 we read a tragic story of those who followed but on their terms. They followed half-heartedly and allowed greed to get in the way of blind faith. They wanted to believe, but on their terms, like many of us!

Our faith should grow every day, if we are not going forward we are not just stagnating we are regressing. We see the works of the Lord all around us if we look – even though Jesus rose over two thousand years ago we see the witness of this faith. We see it in the men, women, and children that go to church each week. We see it in those who honor the Lord in their dress and their speech. Who proclaim Jesus and give him all the glory and the honor on the sports field.

We are the people who witness now. How can we do this?

  1. Smile – that goes a long way in letting strangers know we have something special.
  2. Praise God in conversation. Give God the glory. (I share a story about my husband here.)
  3. Tell others what God has done for you, in your life.
  4. Ask others to share their story – I’d love to hear yours!
  5. Tell people the good news – if you see someone is depressed who seems to be without hope ask them about their faith, invite them to church.

Remember to be able to witness we must first, fill up! Are you filled to overflowing with the love of Christ? We are the witnesses as believers. As we gather in prayer, as we gather as a faith community, as we share what the Lord has done for us.

Be sure to spend time this week in prayer and with your journal in recording how your faith has sustained you.

Let’s pray:

We will pray in the Trinity – in the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

Dear Lord, we thank you for giving us faith – the faith that believes without seeing. Oh, how I would have loved to be with you and talk to you when you lived upon the earth, but Lord, I know that you are more present now, through the Holy Spirit and the graces your death and resurrection have purchased for us sinners. I am so blessed Lord that you opened my eyes to the Christian faith and that you are so ready to deepen my faith if I just ask! Please help me to be a Christian witness to others for your glory, Lord! And, Father God thank you for your love in sending your Son and the Spirit – please hear our prayers … I praise you my God for all you have done and for all you will do in my life, and I pray this in the name of the Almighty God. Amen!

 

Marriage Under Trial

Marriage Under Fire | Marriage under trial happens each day. This can be due to finances, or family issues such as health and in these cases, the pressure just becomes even more difficult. In this episode, we learn the true test is not what you think.| #podcast #christianpodcastMarriage Under Trial – A True Test of Love: Episode 9

Marriage under trial happens each day. This can be due to finances, or family issues such as health and in these cases, the pressure just becomes even more difficult. In this episode, we learn the true test is not what you think.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels and the book, One More Child – download a free chapter at MediaAngels.com

True love can be fleeting or it can last a lifetime. When we meet and fall in love our world seems to change. Our mood lifts, we are happy, and everything is more in life become easy or at least more manageable. Yet there are so many things that can rob our peace and the main one in most marriages is problems with the children. Even the best marriages struggle with different parenting styles or even different opinions on what is important.

Yet I learned the hard way that if I didn’t have open communication with my spouse and patience with my children then there would be a very hard road ahead. I am not a marriage authority, nor have I written any books on the topic, but I can tell you that after being married for almost forty years, I can tell you a thing or two about what works and what does not!

We made some horrible decisions in our marriage that I am not happy about and one of them is deciding on a vasectomy. We thought it would make our life easier and in the long run, we realized it was something we needed to change. There will be a future podcast on this topic.

My husband had ideas that I went along with for the sake of peace. Several were marriage retreats. We attended a marriage encounter, for “good marriages,” and a Cursillo retreat for a deepening of our faith. My husband attended one weekend and I attended the next. This was wonderful in many ways, yet it took me many years to see the fruits.

Marriage Under Trial

  1. Forgetting to put God first in your life, your spouse second in your life – above kids or work.
  2. Thinking you are always right and it is everyone else’s fault.
  3. Holding grudges and failing to forgive.
  4. Not respecting the other person.
  5. Forgetting the romance.

Marriage with Grace

  1. Putting God first in your life, spouse second.
  2. Remembering that you are not in this alone. It is a partnership.
  3. Realizing love means sacrifice.
  4. Forgiveness is key
  5. Dating and rekindling your relationship. Respect your spouse!

Marriage is under attack on a daily basis and we need to pray for the grace to continue on, and to persevere.

The Resurrection

Resurrection | The ressurction is life changing. We know that as Christians our life changed the minute Jesus rose from the dead. This was such a surprise to his apostles! | #podcast #homeschoolpodcastThe Resurrection Life Changing For Christians Episode 91

The resurrection is life changing. We know that as Christians our life changed the minute Jesus rose from the dead. This was such a surprise to his apostles! They didn’t really understand what that meant, but do we? In this episode, we will explore the meaning of the resurrection and how it impacts our lives.

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels, Inc. and the book One More Child available for a limited time with bonuses. You can purchase it on Kindle or Print form on Amazon.

We are currently living in a time when I dread turning on the news. When I listen I feel like this entire world has gone off the deep end. It is so depressing and often the truth is that people have lost their faith. Maybe they never had faith, to begin with! As a Christian, we can be assured that the real story for us doesn’t take place until our life here ends and that friends is the joyous news! The resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ changes everything – the resurrection is life changing!

Resurrection is Life Changing!

John 20: 1-10 explained finding the tomb empty.

Can you imagine being in their shoes! Where was He? Where did He go?

Recently I did a series of podcasts on prayer – the prayers that appear to go unanswered and the prayers Jesus always answers. But at times we feel the way the apostles did – we feel lost without our Shephard. Our Shepard is with us always and this proof of the empty tomb that was guarded by the way by the Roman guards! The guards ran away, they knew they were in trouble.

Jesus defeated death.

Jesus lives today.

Paul tells the Colossians in verse 3:1 to seek what is above. Paul tells the Corinthians to throw out the old yeast and bake a fresh batch of dough. Jesus is the new yeast and we are the dough! We are reborn in Christ – through our commitment and through our Baptism of water and the spirit. This is our hope. We can use this message and allow it to bless us and to change our lives. How can our lives change?

  1. Seek what is above. Colossians 3:1 Mystical Death and Resurrection. If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. We are so worn down with what is happening today – when I began this episode I talked about that – we worry about politics, about money, about our kids – we worry without any provocation! Yet we know that Jesus opened the gates of heaven and this life is temporary – we are to look at the things above and if we do and keep our eyes focused we will be so much happier! I promise.
  2. What about 1 Corinthians 5:7 – Clear out the old yeast, so that you may become a fresh batch of dough, inasmuch as you are unleavened. For our paschal lamb, Christ has been sacrificed. We are to grow in Christ. If we have old yeast the bread will not rise, it will not grow and change it will never be nourishing to our bodies and our souls. Jesus Christ died so that we could have life – we hear that in church often. We must allow the Lord to work in us – and like the bread the kind the raises anyway, you have to punch it down a time or two so that it rises light and fluffy – and sometimes we too are knocked down so that we can rise again.

Do not lose hope! Jesus Christ is risen and we celebrate this each and every day!

Dear Lord Jesus, we thank you for being our paschal lamb, for your sacrifice which opened for us the gates of heaven where we hope to be joyful with you at the end of time. I ask you, Lord, to send your Holy Spirit upon us to open our eyes so that we can look upward, and not dwell on the things that get us down. I thank you, Lord, for the new yeast that will allow us to grow and change and become a new creation in You! I ask a blessing on all those who are listening to this broadcast, for their families, their friends, that you infill them with the joy that surpasses all understanding. We praise you, Lord! And please Lord, hear our prayers as we ask for these specific things:  … we thank you for all you provide for us and pray this in Jesus, Name. Amen.

God Provides In Our Grief

God Provides | God provides in the midst of our grief. In this episode I give you some real life examples but also ways you can see the hand of God in your life, when you don't think he is here. #podcast #christianpodcastGod Provides In Our Grief

God provides in the midst of our grief. In this episode, I give you some real-life examples but also ways you can see the hand of God in your life when you don’t think he is here.

Thanks to our sponsor Media Angels, Inc. – visit the website at MediaAngels.com

When I learned my son would have struggles all of his life my heart broke and yet I had a husband and a young daughter who needed me, plus my son. When I began the process of contacting doctors and learning to what the next steps were in my son’s remediation it began at the hospital where he received occupational therapy and speech therapy.

My days, every day, revolved around the hospital – three days a week sitting and waiting. And that is where I met a friend, a kindred spirit who was also there for remediation for her daughter. Somehow we connected and spoke and became friends. God sent me friends someone who would understand me, who knew what I was going through and who could be there to encourage me.

God Provides Friends:

We had different ideas about how we would proceed after this first step, she decided to send her daughter to a full-time school for the deaf, while I decided to homeschool. Homeschooling was not something I considered lightly – as a certified teacher after spending years in education classes I never imagined I’d go this route. Obviously, God provided as I successfully homeschooled my son through high school. My network of homeschool friends were amazing, strong Christian women who made me think about my faith, what I really believed and how I would approach our differences in doctrine. Yet, we agreed on one fundamental point and that was salvation through Christ. I will be forever thankful for these ladies and their loving hearts!

It was also at this time that my mother gave me the book, Humane Vitae an encyclical written by the Pope Paul VI. It was written in 1968 and while I read it in the late 90’s today it is considered a prophetic book. It talked about the effect of birth control on people and how this would lead to other things such as promiscuity among families, euthanasia and more. Now we know that one of the leading cause for people who have abortions is a form of birth control or failed birth control. Again, it was prophetic in that birth control did change our culture and the rise of divorce and infidelity is now considered rampant.

God provides for us time and time again, yet when we are in the middle of our grief we can’t often see this help. In retrospect, I can see it so clearly now! I can see the times he lifted me up through the phone calls from a friend who said they were thinking about me, for the friendships he provided and for the love of my husband and support of my family.

God Provides! If you are in the middle of a difficult time in your life I recommend the following:

  • Do not make any major decisions.
  • Pray when you feel at your lowest – even a brief, “Dear God, help me!” is sufficient. God knows.
  • Do not worry about things you can not control. God has this.
  • Look at the small things, each and every day and chose to see the good.
  • Surround yourself with positive people, if this is not in real life – do it with us on Facebook – we are there to support you.

Please realize that our prayers are not always answered in the way that we want or wish they would be answered. I have struggled with this for years and that brings anger and unrest during a time when the situation requires my complete focus. I believe it is the enemies way of getting our eyes off of what is important. I have had many prayers answered and many prayers answered in ways I least expected not always in a way that I wanted! (podcast you may want to listen to here on prayers God answers — and prayers unanswered.)

 

 

Unplanned

Unplanned | My life was going well until something unplanned happened. Life keeps twisting and turning. In this episode, we discuss how we as Christians can stand together when life happens. | #christianpodcast #podcast Unplanned ~ Episode 7

My life was going well until something unplanned happened. Life keeps twisting and turning. In this episode, we discuss how we as Christians can stand together when life happens.

The movie unplanned has had a ripple effect upon the general population both for and against. It is the turn of the conservative media to take ownership of the ability of a well-told story to change hearts. Especially in this case when the movie depicts a true story.

In this film, it is the true story of a young woman, Abby Johnson becomes a clinic director of Planned Parenthood and is vehement about her stance on abortion. She is asked to assist during an abortion and what she sees changes her life forever.

How did this young woman come to the decision that abortion on demand was every woman’s right was such a proponent that she took a job as the clinic director?  We base our decisions on life experiences and for the young, those experiences are limited to what we are told or what we experience.

We are a product of our education and the forces behind education today are fighting for the minds of our children. In my book, “One More Child,” I discuss the decisions I made based upon preconceived notions and ones that were drilled into me as a product of the 1970s. It was a time of freedom from the shackles of the past. Women were equal to men if not better and our decisions should be based on “what feels good,” vs. what is good for our souls.

The decision for my husband and I was not abortion, it was a vasectomy to limit the size of our family. Just like abortion is common so is birth control. And, again I ask — how did we get here? Our story ended happily in that we had, “one more child,” and two more after that as we decided that a vasectomy was not what God intended for our family. A child is not unplanned it the eyes of God.

The silent majority is silent. But no more. This movie has peeled back a layer of what has been kept under wraps for way too long. And there is another layer of truth that the actress in the feature film learned that her mother almost aborted her! She didn’t learn this until she had accepted the role and was on set. Her mother called to chat and ask what she was doing and when she shared she was on set and staring in a role, and the topic of the movie her mother began crying. She told her then that she had a previous abortion and when she was pregnant again went to the clinic to have an abortion but couldn’t go through with the second.

 

‘Unplanned’ Actress Ashley Bratcher Learns Dark Secret: ‘I Was Almost Aborted’

What is an amazing turn of events and one I would call a “God incident.” With God, there are no accidents. There is nothing unplanned.

We as Christians and people of faith cannot be silent any longer. How do we do this?

  1. Pray – pray – pray for an end to abortion (shared a prayer on the podcast)
  2. Support pro-life films.
  3. Vote for pro-life politicians.
  4. Stand at pro-life marches, rallies and at abortion clinics in prayer.
  5. Sign petitions and support pro-life organizations.

It only takes one person and that person is you! We have the ability to change the world, one person, beginning with yourself at a time.

Prayers God Answers

Prayers God Answered | We know God can do anything, and he can answer each and every prayer that we ask. In this podcast, we discuss the prayers God answers and will answer all the time! | #podcast #christianpodcast #GodanswersprayersPrayers God Answers ~ Episode 90

We know God can do anything, and he can answer each and every prayer that we ask. In this podcast, we discuss the prayers God answers and will answer all the time!

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels, Inc. and the books available:

One More Child  — and A Few Minutes with God 

Like any good father, God has our best interests in mind. When we pray many times it is self-serving, and minor such as; God, help me find a close parking space or Lord help me eat healthily. Our prayers can be urgent, God, help my friend who has cancer, and help those who are lost and don’t know you. These are all good prayers. The first, while self-serving show trust in the Lord to ask Him for everything because we know that every good thing comes from God. It also is important to keep God in our thoughts and what better way than prayer.

The problem comes — not in the praying but in unanswered prayers when we feel that God does not hear us and He will not answer. When we look at the grand scheme of things, God has answered the most important prayers and that is in giving us life, a world to live in and loved ones that make our life complete.

There are important prayers we pray but there are some prayers that are always answered. And, I’m not being presumptuous. God answers them because it is for our own good.

Here are the prayers He answers:

Faith:

If we pray for faith, or for more faith God will give it to us. Faith is what completes our lives, makes it full and makes it worth living. Faith gives us hope, it gives us joy and it gives us an outlook that there is more than what we can see, hear and touch. Faith gives us the belief that God is the Creator and we are the created. God has an everlasting place for us that will never end and we prepare for this place while each and every day. Faith lets us know there is more.

Salvation:

If we pray for salvation it will be a prayer that is answered. First, we pray for faith, because without faith, we can not have salvation. Jesus came, sent by the Father to live, die and rise from the dead to break the bond of sin and open the gates of heaven so that we can have everlasting life. Salvation is what Jesus gives us and we can accept this for free.

Forgiveness:

God will give us the grace of forgiveness if we pray to Him for this specific grace. He will give us the grace to forgive others who have hurt us. Just as we forgive He too will forgive. The Lord’s prayer states: “Forgive us as we forgive those who have trespassed against us.”

More of You Lord:

If we pray to the Lord for Him to give us more of Him – to reveal Himself to us more fully He will answer this prayer. We long for communion with God to know Him better, but we can not even imagine how much more the Lord wants this for us. If we ask God to let us learn more about Him, to learn to love Him more, to spend more time with Him–He will answer this prayer.

Prayer for Guidance:

If we pray to the Lord to help us and guide us He will!

Psalm 25:4-5 –  James 1:5 – John 16:13

Prayer for Perseverance:

Pray to the Lord for the prayer to persevere, to continue on to keep going when we can’t do it any longer. We pray this prayer when we are at the end of our rope–when we really need help. I’ve prayed this prayer and each time God comes through. I was leaving for a trip and had so much to do. I had my book launch another podcast to prepare that was brand new.

Prayer to Share The Good News With Others:

Pray to the Lord to help you share the Gospel and salvation, through Christ with others. The Lord will give you the opportunities and the words you should use. This is a prayer the Lord will answer. God commissioned the apostles to go forth and make disciples of all nations. Matthew 28:18-20

These prayers as you can see are all other serving – not self-serving. They are things that will increase our relationship with the Lord and with our relationship, we can serve Him better.

Friends pray for these specific things, for faith, salvation, forgiveness, relationship with the Lord, guidance, perseverance, and sharing the Gospel – and I pray this in Jesus Name, Amen.

 

Handling Devastating News

Handling Devastating News | In life, at some point we must deal with handling devastating news - in this episode, I share moments from life and lessons I learned and the hope we all have that today's devasting news is our future praise report! | #christianpodcast #podcastHandling Devastating News – Episode 6

In life, at some point we must deal with handling devastating news – in this episode, I share moments from life and lessons I learned and the hope we all have that today’s devasting news is our future praise report!

I had a boy and a girl – and people, well-meaning kept telling me I shouldn’t have any more children. Everyone has an opinion and they were willing to share it with me. On top of this, my son was not progressing developmentally. I had a background in education with an emphasis in early childhood education and I was interested in playing educational types of games with my children.

Share points about Neal

Slower at walking, smiling, he seemed to understand but in slow motion – everything took longer. When my daughter was born, my once compliant child didn’t want to go to bed. My husband was a saint and came to help. He was very strong-willed and disobedient. Only years later would we really question how much he understood of what we said? His speech was delayed.

Testing – had blood work done at the result of my pediatrician

Told the devasting news that my son had Mosaicism – not life-threatening, praise God but still life-altering. I didn’t have the advice I will now share with you – and this is so important for anyone receiving information that is hard to process.

Tips for handling devasting news.

  1. Take a deep breath, panic is not an option.
  2. God is in this present moment. Not the past and not the future.
  3. Take the time to process the information and ask questions.
  4. Anxiety may come, and tears, allow yourself to grieve.
  5. Turn to prayer – the Name Jesus is powerful.
  6. Surround yourself with loved ones.

List of things NOT to do when handling devasting news:

  1. Decisions. Don’t make rash decisions.
  2. Get good counsel but double check your options.
  3. No major decisions especially if they are life-changing.
  4. Do not turn to drugs or alcohol

I didn’t have this information so soon after we had the results of my son’s diagnosis I went to my regular women’s health appointment where I shared with my doctor the news. He immediately recommended that my husband get a vasectomy. Skipped bc discussion because he knew I didn’t want to be on the drug.

We got counsel – spoke to a visiting pastor giving a retreat and he advised us that this was a good option. It wasn’t.

The good news is while we did go ahead with the procedure and then years later had it reversed, the subject of my book One More Child, I learned that we are ultimately responsible for our decisions and if we get bad advice we need to check with others.

I had three more children that wouldn’t be here if I had allowed the devasting news to shatter my world and rule my life. How many of you have allowed the things that happen in your life to define you? We talk about the things that we have in medical terms. You are not what you have, it is a symptom!

We have one life to live and I plan to live mine to the fullest, to spend each day praising God and all He has done in my life. My son has lived a great life. He is happy, adjusted and he has owned several vehicles and currently drives an SUV and has a job that he likes in the construction industry. He has a healthy bank account and while he still lives at home, it is his choice for now. He has lived in his own place for a time. And I know he can support himself.

I am not a super parent, I am a parent who takes one day at a time. Please share with me ways you have been able to overcome your devastating news and perhaps tips that will help us all!

 

 

 

 

 

Unanswered Prayers

Unanswered Prayer | What happens when we pray and we feel our prayers have been unanswered. In this episode, we tackle the topic of unanswered prayers and what we can do as Christians to hope! | #podcast #homeschoolpodcastUnanswered Prayers – Episode 89

What happens when we pray and we feel our prayers have been unanswered. In this episode, we tackle the topic of unanswered prayers and what we can do as Christians to hope!

Thanks to our sponsor, Media Angels, Inc. and the books available:

One More Child  — and A Few Minutes with God 

How many times have you prayed for something and feel like God doesn’t answer your prayers? Recently I’ve been praying and praying and I’ve been surrendering to the Lord, but my mind just won’t stop. Like a spoiled child, I keep asking, “Why?” I feel that there must be something blocking this prayer request.

I’ve come to learn some things that I will reveal to you and this is one of those hard self-teaching moments. Truthfully, many times when I share a podcast about a particular topic I feel that I am talking to myself.

The first thing is we can not do anything to make God greater than He is — we try in our limited words to say things like, “I give you all the glory and the honor.” But nothing we give God changes Him – it changes us.

God gives and we receive. It is a pure gift. My next podcast is on all the prayers that God will answer! However, we need to understand specific truths first.

Truth #1 – God can do anything.

If God wanted to answer our prayers immediately he could. He is God! God created the world, he parted the Red Sea, Jesus healed the blind, he brought the dead back to life – he can answer our measly prayers.

Ephesians 3:20-Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us,

Corinthians 9:8 – And God is able to make all grace abound to you so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed;

Matthew 7:7 – Prayer and Ask, and it will be given to you; [b]seek, and you will find; [c]knock, and it will be opened to you.

Jesus promised, “The Father will give you whatever you ask in my name” (John 15:16, 16:23)

So, what’s the deal? Keep listening and you will learn what I did as well as working on a better way to pray – not that it means God will answer but that you can rest assured that your unanswered prayers are being heard!

Truth #2 – God doesn’t need to do what I say.

This hit me hard. What? God does hear my prayers – I know He does, and He is a loving God, and He can answer them if He wants to, but He doesn’t have to do it my way. I felt like a little kid as if I was stopping my feet and demanding that He hear and answer – and then when there was no answer I wanted to know why. Sound familiar? If you have a child you know exactly what I mean.

SO what do I do next?

Truth # 3 – Motives

We should look at our motivation in prayer. Was I asking for something that was selfish? Was it self serving? For example, Lord let me win the lottery, or Lord let me do pass a test that I didn’t study for. We ask for something that could be missing for our prayers. We need to pray for things that are a priority. What is it that you really need and look at your motives for this prayer. Without faith we are lost and when we change how we pray it is amazing.  Read Hebrews 11:6 – Jesus leads a man with a child who is possessed to prioritize his prayers for faith overhealing.

“Whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive if you have faith.” Matthew 21:22 – faith. That is so important in all of our lives.

Lord, allow me to have more faith even if I have unanswered prayers. We should pray with a clear conscience and Deuteronomy 1:43-45 explains this well. If our conscience is guilty we should confess and get this taken care of, and I don’t need to explain why. We may need spiritual healing and we should ask our pastors for help!

Acts 28:27. and read Jer. 15:18-19

Truth #4 – Forgiveness.

What is your heart telling you? Are you holding grudges against other people, are you forgiving others from our heart? Before praying we should ask the Lord if there is anyone we need to forgive. Matthew 11:5 – “Whenever you stand praying, forgive if you have anything against anyone so that your Father who is in heaven will also forgive you your transgressions.”

When we pray are we holding anything against anyone if so we must forgive them. I’ve done several podcasts on forgiveness.

Forgiveness — and Asking for Forgiveness

Yes – we should ask ourselves if we are in sin, a great sin we need to know that these need to be taken care of before we can expect God to answer our prayers.

Truth #5 – We should pray without ceasing and always hope.

Do I keep asking God for my unanswered prayer? Why not – if our motivation is good and if we in good standing with the Lord, we pray and we should not stop praying. Especially if you’ve asked yourself the questions about motivation and forgiveness.

 Please let me caution you, there is no magic formula. There isn’t any guarantee however, we have faith, we must have faith, we must pray for faith. We must ask the Lord for the words to use in prayer. The Lord will help us! We must have hope friends, without hopes we cannot be live.

Let’s pray.
Dear Lord we ask for additional help for our unanswered prayers – we know you hear us – we know you can answer all of our prayers, we know you want what is best for us – but, Lord we are still hurting and still in need of your answers. Lord, please give me the words to pray, not only now for those who are listening but also in the future for when I ask for a particular answer to prayer. Lord help me, help me to look at my motives, I want purity of motives Lord – I want to honestly ask in my prayer. God if my motives are not pure, please show me and allow me to see this, please bring to mind people I need to forgive. I want what you want Lord, and I don’t know what that is but you know. Please give me hope to know that you will hear and answer! Dear Lord, I pray for the following: ……….. and I ask that if it is in your perfect will that you answer my prayers but either way Lord, I want to be obedient to your will. I thank you, Lord, for my unanswered prayers because I will thank you and praise you in all things. I also ask Lord that you give me faith, that you fill me to overflowing with your hope and the peace that surpasses all understanding and I pray this in Jesus Name, Amen!

 

Marriage With Children

Marriage and Children | I didn’t dream of marriage with children in the sense of planning for this day, yet when it came I was open and excited to the possibilities. Marriage Tips | #podcast #christianpodcast #marriageMarriage with Children – Happily Ever After Episode 5

I didn’t dream of marriage with children in the sense of planning for this day, yet when it came I was open and excited to the possibilities. Many of you listening are married – and perhaps some of you are considering marriage. Each of us has a different story and I’m sure it is unique to your situation.

Sometimes our expectations are not what we hope, and sometimes they are greater than anything we could possibly dream. In my case, it was the latter. This man that God brought into my life was amazing in every way. I was undeserving and truly blessed at the same time.

If I learned anything from the situation it is to trust but also to take action. I want to talk more about this in upcoming podcasts – but let me say here to fulfill God’s plans for us we have to make an effort and sometimes get out of our comfort zone and take action.

As I shared in the least episode I was lonely – yet I turned to God. My final thought in prayer was that if the Lord wanted me single all my life I would accept it. And, this admission and surrender gave me great peace?

Surrender To God

Have you ever surrendered a situation to God and felt the same peace? The peace that surpasses all understanding? It is wonderful! I urge you to try it.

Co-habitation is an epidemic. Living together was not an option for us – nor would I have agreed and I know my parents would have been totally against it – I’m happy in my case that it did not come up – and ladies if you are urged to “live together” or sleep with someone to prove you love them, I would say stand up for yourself and say no.

Yet before the marriage, I made a decision I have since regretted – and at the encouragement of a friend I went to an OBGYN since I had not previously been and he advised me to use birth control. I had no idea going into this appointment that I would ever use BC but it made sense. His reasoning was, “You don’t want to get pregnant immediately, you want to see how this marriage goes.”

Birth Control

Friends, I did not question him – I did not pray about it, I did not seek Jeff’s input I just did what the doctor said.

Of course, once we were married I shared this information with my husband and he was unhappy with the decision. I didn’t consider the Catholic church teachings. Before Jeff asked me to get off of birth control I read a very short book that my mother gave me. She was a reader of anything religious and she shared a book, Humane Vitae – this book summarized the teaching in 1968 by then Pope Paul VI that reemphasized the Church’s constant teaching that it was always wrong to use contraception in any manner to prevent children from coming into existence.

What few people realize is that up to 1930, all Protestant denominations agreed to condemn contraception as sinful. However, in 1930 at the Lambeth Conference, the Anglican church, was under social pressure to change their stance and they did. They said it would be allowed in some circumstances. Yet soon they allowed contraception across the board. Now all Protestant denominations have followed, and today, the Catholic Church alone stands by the historic Christian position on contraception.

At first, I was upset with the church’s teaching … why was the Catholic church the only one to make this decision, and not change their stance like all of the other Christian faiths? But then I agreed with my husband. I also listened to a talk by Dr. Janet Smith – her talk was eye-opening for me and I was shocked at her findings on the effects of birth control on women and wondered why this wasn’t common knowledge. Friends, we didn’t have the internet then and we could not find the information readily.

Contraception: Why Not – Link Here

Birth Control – Why

Myths about living together: Living Together – Why or Why Not

When I gave up on bc I felt free – and soon became pregnant with my first. I used this as a perfect reason to stay at home and raise my son, and then two years later (exactly another Christmas Eve baby) my daughter.

Friends I was living my dream, my happily ever after with a man I truly loved and I was so happy to wake up each morning and see him and I couldn’t wait until he got home each and every day. He was equally happy and it was a gift from God because this relationship that we had would be tested. My husband is a rock and I pray this for my children to have a strong spouse. One who will stand beside and support you in every way.

Life isn’t perfect and in my case, that imperfection soon was evident in my son’s delays. For those of you who struggle with special children, the next podcast is for you!

One more thing – marriage isn’t perfect. Mine takes a bunch of work on both sides. Yes, I love my husband but he and I are two different personalities —extreme in a sense. Where he is laid back and easy going to a fault. He loves to procrastinate, “Why do today what you can do tomorrow,” and I love to get it done, now. I’m strong willed, I want my own way, and I am tenacious! Our first year was touch and go and many of our arguments stemmed from immaturity on my part. Thankfully, the Lord was there in our lives. We attended church as a family and we prayed and we looked at our lives in the sense of growth and change. Which turned out to be good because I had an inclination that Neal was delayed but didn’t know the severity until later. And that my friends are a time when I really had to cry out to God for help.

We face challenges in life – sometimes they are more difficult than other times. We have to hold on to God as a life-line, but how can you if you do not have a deep relationship with Him? In my life, my relationship can be best described as an ebb and flow of the tides … sometimes it was strong and unwavering and other times it seemed to take a back seat to more pressing needs.

My promise to you is that when you follow God – all in, He will not fail you. He may not answer your prayers exactly as you hoped. But, believe me when I say the way He answers them are perfect in every way.

Easter Blessings

Easter Blessings | The peace of the Lord is always with us, especially for those who believe but what about Easter blessings, why is that a special time? | #christianpodcast Easter Blessings Episode 88

The peace of the Lord is always with us, especially for those who believe but what about Easter blessings, why is that a special time?

On Easter, we celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord and Savior! He is risen is the cry – and we are so blessed at the thought that Jesus Christ who was sent by the Father, lived, died for our sins and rose from the dead to break the bond of sin for us all.
His was the ultimate sacrifice and on this day, Easter we celebrate it in a fuller way.
Reflection

“On entering the tomb, they saw a young man in a white robe seated on the right-hand side, and they were struck with amazement. But he said to them, ‘There is no need for alarm. You are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified: he has risen, he is not here. See, here is the place where they laid him. But you must go and tell his disciples and Peter. He is going before you to Galilee it is there you will see him, just as he told you.’”

Mark 16: 5–8

And Luke 24 – 1-12  – The Resurrection of Jesus

 

Loneliness

Loneliness | Loneliness hits when we least expect it - solutions that work. | #podcast #christianpodcastLoneliness  – Episode 4

Loneliness hit me just as I realized, “I’m now an adult.” In this episode, I share some life lessons I learned along the way to adulthood and how we are never alone.

After graduation, I returned to my home town and while my parents were truly loving, and they had the best intentions for me. My dad, however, took the entire, “Italian father,” job literally and stepped in with the acceptance of my first job. I wanted a job teaching elementary school but the job my dad accepted was in middle school – in fact, the one I had attended as a kid when we first moved to town.

God, however, knew what He was allowing and it turned out to be a perfect fit for me. Yet one thing stood in the way of my happiness with my life, and that of a teacher, loneliness.

Loneliness is an Epidemic

The statistics for loneliness are astronomical and it tends to lead to depression. Have you ever felt lonely in the midst of a busy life? I had a wonderful family surrounding me, a bustling Italian restaurant I could escape to if needed with plenty of customers who knew me since I had lived in town since middle school. Yet I felt out of place. I was finally an adult with a piece of paper that said I earned a degree and I had a job, a good job.

The problem was my relationship with the Lord and that was the first thing that needed fixing. Loneliness for me was real and without the grace from God, I would have been lost. It was an interior sense that there was more, that God had someone for me but if He decided to wait then I was fine with waiting or never having anyone if that was God’s will.

I was thankful to a college friend who gave me what I call the True Love Prayer – I’ll read an excerpt to you now…

It was after truly praying and believing that God was in control and surrendering my will to His that I found my loneliness lift. I was no longer focused within, I was focused on others. Giving of ourselves is one way to combat loneliness. I gave to my class and I enjoyed my students. They were wonderful!

2 Corinthians 4:17

While I know I was not alone in feeling loneliness I realize to that it will come and go as I age. However, at this time I believe that it was in letting go that God worked out the details of my life and brought what would turn out to be the love of my life into town – a boy I knew from my college days who lived two hours away. God took care of it!

Now that my kids are grown and the youngest two are in college I’ve felt that loneliness again. During the day instead of the 100+ demands on my time and attention, I found myself wandering around the house wondering, and thinking, and yes feeling lonely! Just think I run a business, and help my husband with his business and still write and speak – can you imagine if I really didn’t have anything to do?

Loneliness is a state of mind and I think the enemy likes to use it against us!

If only we (I) could release more and trust in Him. Can you do that in your own life? Trust? Let go of loneliness? Allow God to work in your life as He has worked countless times in mine? I am learning to do that each and every day. God has this – I trust and I believe!