Monday, May 21, 2007

Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow....WHATTA Weekend!!

We are all praising God for the ways we were blessed at the retreat weekend we hosted at our church May 18 - 20th! The work in the year and months, weeks and days leading up to it was WELL worth it! (Although on the Thursday prior, we were all muttering under our breath at times..*L*)

Brennan Manning, author of many wonderful books (known esp. for the Ragamuffin Gospel, Ruthless Trust, Abba's Child - which I can't WAIT to read after hearing Brennan this weekend! - and many, many more), is a wonderfully gifted, spirit-filled speaker, - a gentle man, and Godly, down to earth person.

So many people came together to make the weekend such a blessing, over 185 people came to hear Brennan (from OR, W. VA, SC, IL, MI, MN, IA, WI, OH, IN and more!)
I am still going through pictures I took for the website at church and for our newsletter... and re-living the weekend and the ways God spoke thru the wisdom, experiences, & insight of Brennan. What a life's story he has, very sad in some parts, and it made me cry for him. But what wonderful healings and strength Brennan finds in God through it all.
Our family, mom & dad, sisters, brother in law, cousins & aunt provided the Sunday Brunch, here are some of us in the kitchen following the service.

Here's a photo with Brennan just before he left on Sunday... what a dear, dear
man... Thank you Lord, for Brennan and the ministry You have given him...still going strong after all these years.

Friday, May 11, 2007

God-cidence in the words of Oswald Chambers

Ever have something you read, like scripture, or the wisdom of Christian writers touch you in places that you happen to be at a particular, specific moment?

Today's devotional from "My Utmost for His Highest" does that for me just now. Sometimes it IS difficult to live with friends or relatives who seem to deliberately annoy me, and it's difficult to "be as Christ" to others who you know maybe don't really mean what they say, but they say things to purposely stir up things....why they do that, I have no clue...but God calls us to love and show love.... it's difficult for me in some of those cases... but, this devotional and the scripture seems to be speaking to me and the situation I have encountered just recently.... hope it speaks to YOU too.

May 11, 2007
'Love One Another'

Love is an indefinite thing to most of us; we don’t know what we mean when we talk about love. Love is the loftiest preference of one person for another, and spiritually Jesus demands that this sovereign preference be for Himself (see Luke 14:26 ). Initially, when "the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit" ( Romans 5:5 ), it is easy to put Jesus first. But then we must practice the things mentioned in 2 Peter 1 to see them worked out in our lives.
The first thing God does is forcibly remove any insincerity, pride, and vanity from my life. And the Holy Spirit reveals to me that God loved me not because I was lovable, but because it was His nature to do so. Now He commands me to show the same love to others by saying, ". . . love one another as I have loved you" ( John 15:12 ). He is saying, "I will bring a number of people around you whom you cannot respect, but you must exhibit My love to them, just as I have exhibited it to you." This kind of love is not a patronizing love for the unlovable— it is His love, and it will not be evidenced in us overnight. Some of us may have tried to force it, but we were soon tired and frustrated.
"The Lord . . . is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish . . ." ( 2 Peter 3:9 ). I should look within and remember how wonderfully He has dealt with me. The knowledge that God has loved me beyond all limits will compel me to go into the world to love others in the same way. I may get irritated because I have to live with an unusually difficult person. But just think how disagreeable I have been with God! Am I prepared to be identified so closely with the Lord Jesus that His life and His sweetness will be continually poured out through Me? Neither natural love nor God’s divine love will remain and grow in me unless it is nurtured. Love is spontaneous, but it has to be maintained through discipline.

Monday, May 7, 2007

Busy, Busy, Busy....

whew.... it's been a quite a few days since I've posted anything... been busy at work, wishing I could have had more time for creating purposes too!

This last weekend we moved the daughter from Milwaukee to the Chicago area. Hubby and son helped on Saturday, I stayed over on Sat. night and Sun. night and helped clean, unpack, rearranged furniture, hang pictures, rearranged furniture, make runs to the store for screws, mops, more cleaning supplies, rearranged furniture, breaks for dinner and resting, and then admiring her new apartment and how GREAT it looks. I am so proud of Kasey and look forward to going back down soon to see what else she's done to her new place, and the new studio she is transferred to also.

*sniff* You know, I think I can still smell bleach from all the cleaning and disinfecting we did in the bathroom and kitchen...*L*

Welp, time to get back into my life and time to get back into creating more assemblages .... well... maybe after the Mother's Day event at church, and then the Brennan Manning weekend following... And the grandson's birthday party celebrations coming up soon too... and bills to pay, our own house to clean... and...and...and...

*sigh*.... this too shall pass... Lord, hear my prayer! *S*