Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Injured Goose

We have a lake across the street from us and that means lots of messy geese trump through our yard daily. They make a mess on our driveway and eat up our beautiful green grass. Needless to say we consider them more of a nuisance than anything. But as an animal lover I never want any harm to come to them.
We often see people come speeding down our street and you can tell they are less than patient as the geese waddle across the street in front of them at their own pace. I have even seen cars TRY to hit them. Now that makes me mad! In the spring they have their little ones following right behind. The parents are very protective, as our little dog found out one day. They don't have those long necks for nothing. She doesn't get quite to close now.
Recently we have noticed that we have an injured goose hanging around our yard. I have a bird feeder right outside our kitchen window so that I can observe the different birds comings and goings. The geese often come over to scavenge for seed. The other day I noticed that a goose was hobbling around with what appeared to be an injured leg. I watched him on and off all day and he was always by himself. I called my husband to the window and we decided that he needed some food, so we took some seed out to him and put fresh water in the birdbath. He was hesitant as we came into his space but when he discovered we had food and were not trying to harm him he settled down and ate up. Smart bird, huh?
I got to thinking about what spiritual significance there was to this story. You see his buddies had left him on his own. That is what animals do. When another one is injured they leave them so that they don't get slowed down. I thought how sad! All the other geese were walking around together and there he was injured, left to himself unable to even fly. He kept sitting down, like it was just too hard to keep walking.
Oftentimes that is what we do. A fellow Christian falls down and we leave him to fend for himself. They might need us to walk alongside them for a while with encouragement until they are back on the right path. Instead we go on off with others without a thought to the needs our injured brother or sister has. Is this true of you or do you help to carry your brothers burden? Sometimes it is easier to go about our business believing we won't ever be down ourselves. My heart usually goes out to the underdog or in this case, the undergoose! Think of someone who is down and needs a special touch of love by you. Would you be willing to reach out to that downtrodden person as the Lord leads you? Take a moment to make a call, send a card, or take a meal.
Often our inmates feel deserted. They are left without any support many times from their family or friends. What is the old saying, "Out of sight, out of mind". We tend to forget them as we go about our busy schedules. A letter or a package or a book that would minister to them is often the very thing that will give them hope that someone cares about them. Consider ministering to someone today as God directs you.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Can you believe it?

After the marvelous wedding on Sunday of my son and his fiancee ( whom I can now legally refer to as my daughter-in-law) I headed off to the beach with four grandchildren. Mind you I made sure the video player was in the car and we stopped and picked out movies that would keep them all occupied for the 5 hour trip. We had two in car seats with one in the middle and then one in the front with me, all taking turns, of course!
We got down to my friend, Jean's house and unloaded the car and headed straight to the beach. Our 3 year old couldn't talk about anything but sand castles. Believe me he had sand from stem to stern. But they all had a blast, from driving the golf cart to going up and down the elevator a million times, to playing on the WII, and closing out the night in the pool at 10:00 then home to baths. Whew, Maw Maw was pooped but oh such memories. Worth it all.
We were invited to stay another night and since the kids overheard that there would have been world war three if we hadn't. You know, all the cries, and moans and why not's. Well I had no good reason for why not, so we stayed and went to the Family Kingdom and they rode to their heart's content.
The morning we were packing to leave I got a call from our son, saying, "Bring the kids by and we will spend some time with them and take them home." Was that music to my tired ears! See Mom and Dad had gone to the beach for their honeymoon too and decided a little family time would finish their time off just right.
So I had one lone grandson in tow on the ride home. He watched movies and maybe enjoyed the quiet and one on one time too. It was good for all. And guess what! I wasn't really as tired as I had thought I would be. God's strength enabled me to keep going, and going, and going.
Thanks Jean for a whale of a time! You are a most gracious hostess. So patient and kind. We love you!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

You are Beautiful indeed!

Yesterday I had the great privilege of ministering to my first patient of the day spiritually. I could tell we were of like spirits as I entered the room. God gave me an entrance to talk about Him with her not long after. I got her medical information but was prompted to share with her about my recent talk at the ladies Tea at Center Grove in April. God has really used that teaching tool He gave me to share with so many ladies I meet who don't think highly of themselves. I am able to reassure them of His love for them and how beautiful He sees them.
After sharing my experience with her I said, "I don't know why I just shared all that with you". She said, "I do. I have not been seeing myself as beautiful. I hate to look in the mirror". Tears began to run down her cheeks. I remembered that I had put some of my You are Beautiful booklets in the car so I went out to get her one when I finished her interview. Oh how I pray that God will speak to her through them and continue to minister to her heart.
To think that the first printing of the booklets led to a second printing and now I am needing more, I just marvel at how God is using that message He gave me in preparation for the Ladies Tea to end up blessing more and more ladies. The world has poisoned our minds with what a beautiful woman looks like. They say you have to be a size 2, have flawless skin, wear the designer clothes, and have money to maintain all of it. God says, "NO, It is your inner beauty I am interested in".
This lady had plenty of inner beauty. She couldn't see it cause the enemy had deceived her. He had also deceived her into believing that she couldn't do anything about her weight which had her so depressed.
I have been invited to come to the Salvation Army in September and October to share the same message about being beautiful in His sight. I am so excited to share cause I know the Father had this group of ladies in mind when He spoke the message to me. Many of them have never heard that they are beautiful. Many have been used and abused. They can't see the heart of a Heavenly Father and take in His love for them because they may have never even known their earthly father or may have suffered abuse at his hand. I know God is excited that His message continues on. We ARE beautiful ladies, let's chose to believe it!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Come....I have a Free Gift for you!

My husband, Jimmy, and I went to Concord Mills the other day. While going in and out of shops I had a lady from a booth in the walkway try to entice me to come see her products. I said no but then she had the perfect catch phrase, "I have a free gift for you." She got me by the arm and led me over to apply an ingredient that cleansed my skin. The old dry skin came rolling off and it actually did feel a lot smoother afterwards. She talked about how it prevented the pimples (I noticed she had a couple on her own face) and how it exfoliated the skin making it smooth and young. She observed my old age spots and honed in on how her product would make me younger.
She started explaining how the two products were usually sold separately; one for $69.00 and one for $120.00. But today, I could purchase both for $69.00. I told her repeatedly that I was not going to buy but she kept trying, with her hand on my arm.
At the end she even pulled me over to the cash register to show me an even better deal. I told her that she was really convincing but as I said before I was not purchasing anything. The attitude seemed to change. I had told her that I would be praying for her in days to come. She was a Jew, here from Israel she said. Of course her products were from the Dead Sea. In a sort of condescending manner she said, "Oh, I will be praying for you too."
I immediately prayed against any soulish prayers from her. I really don't think I wanted her praying for me. She had indicated she did not know Our Father and I sensed her prayers would be against me, not for me.
Later I heard from a salesman in a near by Christian bookstore that these ladies had been trained for sales and the determination came from the fact that if they didn't sell, they didn't get paid. Can you imagine working all day without pay? I would say that was a way to motivate them.
Got me thinking! We have available the greatest gift of all yet we keep it to ourselves. We don't go out of our way to offer it to the passerby. We often don't say a word, much less keep on trying by another method to share with others in our day to day walk. Our reward will come in eternity. Will you be motivated by that enough to share Christ with those you meet today. A smile, a touch, a promise to pray for them in their circumstances, or a word of witness as to how His coming into your heart has changed you. Others should be able to look at your face and know that you have been with the Father. There should be something different about you just like with Moses. He radiated God as he came down off that mountain. The application of His Word and His presence will make the difference in your appearance and spirit. That's how people will know you have been with Him.
I also envisioned how the enemy works to draw us in with promises of this and that. He tries to hold on to us and entice us to purchase his products with promises of what he can provide. But God always makes a way out. We can choose to stand our ground and say, "NO." Sometimes we yield and then walk away wondering how in the world we fell for his lies. We can get drawn in even when our intentions to speak a word of hope to them is pure. Satan can hold on to us (strongholds) in such a way that if we don't have our armor on and stand on the Word of God, we can be drawn in. Glad I had had my time with the Commander of the Hosts that day. My shield of faith was in place allowing me to resist the tactics of the enemy.
By the way, I never did see a "free gift." Praise Him we can give out His free gift of salvation to all who will receive. I praise Him for the opportunity to share with this young lady. I can still see her face. So blinded! What a great reminder to pray, not only for her but for her people.