Monday, April 23, 2007

Low Points in Life -- Don't Have to be!

Low Points in Life

Often I get down, even downright depressed, when my husband travels. Oh, I don’t mind what he’s doing, he does great stuff and I admire him for it. It’s just that I hate being left behind. No, I don’t necessarily want to go with him, I just don’t want to be left alone. Ha. Yeah, I want my cake and to eat it too. I’ve noticed a pattern. If he’s gone just for a couple of days, I can usually deal with it pretty well. However, when it’s for an extended period of time, I notice my temper is shorter, my patience limited and my frustration level higher. It’s amazing how my mood directly affects my children. This morning was one of those mornings of everyone yelling at each other and everyone being short-tempered—because that’s how I started out. Before dropping the kids at school, we did all make peace, but I just hate starting the day that way. So, as soon as I could, I pulled out my Bible and the Lord led me to Psalm 42. It’s also a favorite worship song of mine.

1. As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. 2. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? 3. My tears have been my food day and night, while men say to me all day long, “Where is your God?” 4. These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go with the multitude, leading the procession to the house of God, among the festive throng. 5. Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and 6. my God. My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember you from the land of Jordan, the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar. 7. Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me. 8. By day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me—a prayer to the God of my life. 9. I say to God my Rock, “Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?” 10. My bones suffer mortal agony as my foes taunt me, saying to me all day long, “Where is your God?” 11. Why are you so downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

This tells me that I’m not alone. The psalmist himself felt separated from God, depressed. And when this happens, we are to run to God to restore that relationship with him. To focus on his goodness and the blessings he’s given to us, not the things that cause our depression. God is good, he is faithful to meet all our needs—and beyond. When I can focus on that, my sadness lifts, hope is there and I thank God for his blessings. At least my husband is coming home. Some wives can’t say that.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Trials of Faith

Two days ago, I got word that we would owe a little over $3,000 to the IRS. $3,231, to be exact. I thought to myself, okay, now I can be depressed.

Then I opened the mail and opened a bill from the hospital and it was for approximately $3,000.

$6,000 worth of bills in the same day. Can you say, “I’m going to be sick?”
Okay, I decided, NOW I can be depressed.

And I fussed and fumed for a while, wondering where in the world we would find $6,000 when we have only a little in checking and only a little more in savings.

After a while, I calmed down and decided that it might be a good idea to pray about it. Duh. I know. So, I did.

Honestly, I didn’t feel a whole lot better, but I knew God heard my prayer and would answer it in whatever way he felt would be best. Hopefully, by allowing us to come up with $6,000. And guess, what? He did. He came through. By using family and common sense. The IRS bill got paid and I set up a payment plan through the hospital.

But the whole situation just made me question, Why? Why is it so hard sometimes? It seems like a struggle all the time. And then I read an entry in James.

“James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes scattered among the nations, greetings! Consider it pure joy, my brothers, when you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If anyone lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault and it will be given to him. But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord – he is a double minded mind, unstable in all his ways. . .
v. 12 Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.

I have to say that our financial situation is often a trial, but I just pray that God will allow me to face it with joy, and when I ask His help, I pray that I will continue to believe in His unending goodness. For He has promised to provide and has come through every time.

So, I don’t think I will be depressed. Instead, I will praise His name in every way. “Blessed be the name of the Lord, Blessed be Your glorious name,” the song says. That’s my praise today. Thank you, Jesus, for your care even in the small things—and keep working on my attitude.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

CORAL MOON by Brandilyn Collins

Hey ya'll, I just read an awesome book by Brandilyn. This is the 2nd in the Kanner Lake series and she's outdone herself.

Here's the review, enjoy!

In CORAL MOON, Brandilyn Collins brings us spiritual warfare at its deadliest—and the power of prayer at its strongest. The power of one name, Jesus. A name above all names, the King of Kings, Lord of Lords, the light in a dark world. Ephesians 6:12 tells us, “For we are not fighting against flesh and blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.” (NLT)

Brandilyn launches the reader into a spiritual battle where séances and dabbling in the occult have serious consequences, not only for the two people who turn up dead, but for a whole town. CORAL MOON holds the reader spellbound for full eighty-one chapters. Ace reporter, Leslie Brymes, goes out to her car—and finds a dead body sitting in her front seat. This incident drops the reader full swing into the life of small town Kanner Lake and its battery of intriguingly unique characters. Be prepared to go up and down and all around as you follow in Leslie’s footsteps tracking down a killer. You’ll find yourself praying her though spiritual attacks and sleepless nights. How is evidence from a dead man turning up at the crime scenes? Is a ghost really responsible for the deaths of two Kanner Lake citizens? The Chief of Police is stumped—and scared. Only those prayers from the faithful can defeat the evil forces invading Kanner Lake.

I have to say that I can normally spot the “bad guy” in a suspense/mystery novel. However, Brandilyn managed to keep me guessing right up to the very end. Get this book and read it. You’ll keep thinking about it long after you, regretfully, turn the last page. Oh, and just a reminder…Before reading the first page, strap on your seatbelt and Don’t Forget to B-R-E-A-T-H-E!