Tag Archive | Giving

Just Keep Dancing

David danced before the LORD with all his might; II Samuel 6:14

One of my favorite television shows to  watch is  “Dancing With the Stars”. I love seeing the contestants start of with minimal skill then as the weeks go by they transform into skilled dancers with precision, poise, gracefulness, and moves that I could not even dream of being able to perform…

This show reminds me much of life. We start out clumsy and easily frustrated but as we face greater challenges we begin to handle them with more poise and tolerance.

  • Does it happen over night? No!
  • Will we miss steps? Yes!
  • Will those we must dance with irritate us? Absolutely!

But…it is so important we remember…whether we are tired, sore, frustrated, challenged, or even tempted to quit we must …

JUST KEEP DANCING

Love Lee ♥

“Wild Horses Couldn’t Drag Me Away”

I am sure you have heard the saying “Wild Horses Couldn’t Drag Me Away” meaning…I ain’t moving!!! Paul is telling the church in Rome…

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?  As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, nether angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:35-39

If you have Jesus in your heart, Not even Wild Horses can drag you away from the Love Of God…

OH HOW HE LOVES US… 

I love this song…Enjoy!!!

Love Lee ♥

The Event

 

THE EVENT

April 21st thru April 24th
7pm
You are not going to want to miss this one!!!

Come early to get a seat…ADDMISSION IS FREE!!!

Child Care Provided

Please Join Me in Praying for the Cast and Choir as they tell of the Greatest Love Story EVER!!!

Love Lee ♥

Make An Impact

“Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down, But a good word makes it glad.” Proverbs 12:25 (NASB)

There are days my heart is weighed down, times when I feel a heaviness but find all it takes is a good word from a friend, a smile from a stranger, a hug from a co-worker and my frown turns upside down.

Be a blessing to someone today…

  • Give a compliment
  • Wrap your arms around a shoulder
  • Throw a smile across the room
  • Speak positive words

Make a positive Impact on Your World Today for Him!!!

Love Lee ♥

Think About It

In a recent conversation I suddenly realized…This person has not said one positive or encouraging word much less a positive or encouraging sentence.

Have you been in conversations like that?  A conversation  in which every flaw is pointed out or every statement you make is debated? Then, before you know it you begin to doubt yourself and even worse, get sucked into the negativity or begin to try to defend yourself…

It was during this recent conversation I snapped and mentally said to myself “Girl, you don’t have to listen to this! God says ___________.” The blank was filled with all the promises God has provided for my life, the blessings He has and is going to pour out on my life, the grace and mercy He has shown to date.  Wow…What an enlightening moment! As I am having this epiphany the words of negativity are no longer descernable and I only hear…

 “Blah, Blah, Blah, Blah”

It was the coolest thing ever!!! God began to protect my ears from the negativity and allowed my focus to move to Him!!!  I choose not to think of the negative, mean, and hurtful things humans may try speak over me, my life, or my family.

 Instead I will Think About These Things…

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Philippians 4:8

Think About It…

Love Lee ♥

What’s Your Weakness?

Everyone has strengths and weaknesses and it is human nature to want to showcase your strengths and hide your weaknesses. However, it is in your weaknesses God can use you the most. Without weakness, God’s supernatural strength can not be exalted.
 
To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. II Corinthians 12:7
 
Countless times I have counseled people who were at the end of their rope feeling there was absolutely no resolution for the problems they were faced, only to later hear them report God’s goodness and mercy; singing His praises for the deliverance He provided.
  • Wayward child returned home
  • Financial issues resolved
  • Crumbling marriages restored
  • infirmities healed

If You Want To Impress People Showcase Your Strengths But If You Want To Influence People Share Your Weaknesses.

When you share you weaknesses, God becomes the center of attention and His power is showcased. The focus is removed from you and placed on God’s power. By transferring the focus to God your problem becomes really small and His power becomes very strong.

Thus, your value is not determined by your problem but instead your value is determined by your God.

What’s Your Weakness?

Love Lee ♥

What’s Your Attitude?

This morning as I reflect on my calling in life and why God has placed me where I am…my first thought was I am humbled. Then I began to think…Do I even understand the meaning of humble?
 
The Dictionary defines humble as:
1: not proud or haughty : not arrogant or assertive
2: reflecting, expressing, or offered in a spirit of deference or submission <a humble apology>

Then gives synonyms and antonyms which helps paint an even clearer picture of humble…

Synonyms: demure, down-to-earth, lowly, meek, modest, unassuming, unpretentious

Antonyms: arrogant, bumptious, chesty, conceited, egotistic (or egotistical), fastuous, haughty, highfalutin (also hifalutin), high-and-mighty, high-handed, high-hat, hoity-toity, huffish, huffy, imperious, lordly, overweening, peremptory, pompous, presuming, presumptuous, pretentious, self-asserting, self-assertive, supercilious, superior, toplofty (also toploftical), uppish, uppity

In this day and age whether climbing the corporate ladder, advancing your business, or networking, only the outgoing, strong, and most boisterous  tend to “move up” in the life. So when one hears humble it is often equated with being weak. Unfortunately the humble spirit almost always grates on the nerves of those who are not… 

Paul urges us to “walk in a manner Worthy of the calling to which we have been called, with all humility, and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love” (Ephesians 4:2).  Yep, that means we must love those that portray all the antonyms of humble; which I might add is in itself not an easy task!

1 Peter 5:5 reminds us, “… Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”  Now I don’t know about you but I certainly do not want to be in opposition with God…I want to bathe in His grace!

Psalm 25:9 encourages us saying, “He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble His way.”

Yes, I think it is very accurate to say I am humbled and I am so blessed by God! However, for me to remain humble and show love around those people who exhibit all the antonyms above….that is the true test! Am I humble enough…NO WAY!!! So I pray God will help me grow more humble daily!!!

What’s Your Attitude???

Love Lee ♥

Doing What’s Right

…Stop doing wrong, learn to do right! Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow. Isaiah 1:16b-17

Hmmm…sounds easy; Right..WRONG!!!

Doing what’s right doesn’t come natural. It is a learned trait and requires a lot of practice. To learn to do right is to carry out the remainder of the scripture…

Seek Justice 

To defend and promote ones honor. Righting the wrongs of the world; ensuring…

  • that people receive their “fair share” of the goods available;
  • that people receive “fair treatment” from society’s institutions;
  • that people’s actions conform to rules of “fair play”;
  • and that any injustices are adequately addressed.

 Encourage the Oppressed

Delivering encouragement to those who are hurting or down on their luck by…

  • speaking kindness over their lives
  • giving them a hand up
  • showing compassion
  • making eye contact
  • delivering a smile
  • letting them know you are praying for them

Delivering encouragement differs from enabling or rescuing on in need. Encouragement is offered to promote independence not dependence and it empowers one to take control of their own life.

Defend the Cause of the Fatherless

There are many ways to care for orphans.  You can…

  • adopt
  • donate to organizations that assist adoptive parents
  • volunteer at an orphanage
  • sponsor a child through Compassion (many children who are put up for adoption are not orphans-but their families just can’t afford to provide for their basic needs

Plead the Case of the Widow

Being a widow can be so incredibly hard. To have had the love of a man and the relationship that was built on that love suddenly snatched from you can be all but devastating. A widow is bombarded with a grief, loneliness, and desperation at times. What should we as Christians do? We can…

  • visit often
  • help with household maintenance and upkeep
  • assist with yard work
  • call and check up often
  • send cards

Doing what is right is not easy, it is not convenient, and it takes time and commitment. At times we must put our personal goals and objectives aside and love unconditionally.  

Are You Doing What’s Right?

Love Lee ♥

The Gift of Forgiveness

Perhaps you are looking for the perfect gift…I read this story today by John William Smith; it is heart warming and a must to share with your friends…
 
 
The Gift of Forgiveness
by John William Smith 
Forgiveness at ChristmasThe Christmas of 1949 we didn’t have a tree.

My dad had as much pride as anybody, I suppose, so he wouldn’t just say that we couldn’t afford one.

When I mentioned it, my mother said that we weren’t going to have one this year, that we couldn’t afford one, and even if we could – it was stupid to clutter up your house with a dead tree.

I wanted a tree badly though, and I thought – in my naïve way – that if we had one, everybody would feel better.

Taking Matters into my Own Hands
About three days before Christmas, I was out collecting for my paper route.

It was fairly late – long after dark – it was snowing and very cold.

I went to the apartment building to try to catch a customer who hadn’t paid me for nearly two months – she owed me seven dollars.

 Much to my surprise, she was home.

She invited me in and not only did she pay me, she gave me a dollar tip!

It was a windfall for me – I now had eight whole dollars.

What happened next was totally unplanned.

On the way home, I walked past a Christmas tree lot and the idea hit me.

The selection wasn’t very good because it was so close to the holiday, but there was this one real nice tree.

It had been a very expensive tree and no one had bought it; now it was so close to Christmas that the man was afraid no one would.

He wanted ten dollars for it, but when I – in my gullible innocence – told him I only had eight, he said he might sell it for that.

I really didn’t want to spend the whole eight dollars on the tree, but it was so pretty that I finally agreed.

I dragged it all the way home – about a mile, I think – and I tried hard not to damage it or break off any limbs.

The snow helped to cushion it, and it was still in pretty good shape when I got home.

You can’t imagine how proud and excited I was.

I propped it up against the railing on our front porch and went in.

My heart was bursting as I announced that I had a surprise.

I got Mom and Dad to come to the front door and then I switched on the porch light.

Surprise!!
Where did you get that tree?” my mother exclaimed.

But it wasn’t the kind of exclamation that indicates pleasure.

“I bought it up on Main Street. Isn’t it just the most perfect tree you ever saw?” I said, trying to maintain my enthusiasm.

“Where did you get the money?” Her tone was accusing and it began to dawn on me that this wasn’t going to turn out as I had planned.

“From my paper route.” I explained about the customer who had paid me.

“And you spent the whole eight dollars on this tree?” she exclaimed.

She went into a tirade about how stupid it was to spend my money on a dumb tree that would be thrown out and burned in a few days.

She told me how irresponsible I was and how I was just like my dad with all those foolish, romantic, noble notions about fairy tales and happy endings and that it was about time I grew up and learned some sense about the realities of life and how to take care of money and spend it on things that were needed and not on silly things.

She said that I was going to end up in the poorhouse because I believe in stupid things like Christmas trees, things that didn’t amount to anything.

I Just Stood There
My mother had never talked to me like that before and I couldn’t believe what I was hearing.

I felt awful and I began to cry.

Finally, she reached out and snapped off the porch light.

“Leave it there,” she said. “Leave that tree there till it rots, so every time we see it, we’ll all be reminded of how stupid the men in this family are.”

Then she stormed up the stairs to her bedroom and we didn’t see her until the next day.

Dad and I brought the tree in and we made a stand for it.

He got out the box of ornaments and we decorated it as best as we could; but men aren’t too good at things like that, and besides, it wasn’t the same without mom.

There were a few presents under it by Christmas day – although I can’t remember a single one of them – but Mom wouldn’t have anything to do with it.

It was the worst Christmas I ever had.

Fast Forward to Today
Judi and I married in August of 1963, and dad died on October 10 of that year. Over the next eight years, we lived in many places. Mom sort of divided up the year – either living with my sister Jary or with us.

In 1971 we were living in Wichita, Kansas – Lincoln was about seven, Brendan was three and Kristen was a baby. Mom was staying with us during the holidays. On Christmas Eve I stayed up very late. I was totally alone with my thoughts, alternating between joy and melancholy, and I got to thinking about my paper route, that tree, what my mother had said to me and how Dad had tried to make things better.

I heard a noise in the kitchen and discovered that it was mom. She couldn’t sleep either and had gotten up to make herself a cup of hot tea – which was her remedy for just about everything. As she waited for the water to boil, she walked into the living room and discovered me there. She saw my open Bible and asked me what I was reading. When I told her, she asked if I would read it to her and I did.

The Truth Comes Out
When the kettle began to whistle, she went and made her tea. She came back, and we started to visit. I told her how happy I was that she was with us for Christmas and how I wished that Dad could have lived to see his grandchildren and to enjoy this time because he always loved Christmas so. It got very quiet for a moment and then she said, “Do you remember that time on Twelve Mile Road when you bought that tree with your paper route money?”

“Yes,” I said, “I’ve just been thinking about it you know.”

She hesitated for a long moment, as though she were on the verge of something that was bottled up so deeply inside her soul that it might take surgery to get it out. Finally, great tears started down her face and she cried, “Oh, son, please forgive me.”

“That time and that Christmas have been a burden on my heart for twenty-five years. I wish your dad were here so I could tell him how sorry I am for what I said. Your dad was a good man and it hurts me to know that he went to his grave without ever hearing me say that I was sorry for that night. Nothing will ever make what I said right, but you need to know that your dad never did have any money sense (which was all too true).

We were fighting all the time – though not in front of you – we were two months behind in our house payments, we had no money for groceries, your dad was talking about going back to Arkansas and that tree was the last straw. I took it all out on you. It doesn’t make what I did right, but I hoped that someday, when you were older, you would understand. I’ve wanted to say something for ever so long and I’m so glad it’s finally out.”

Well, we both cried a little and held each other and I forgave her – it wasn’t hard, you know.

Then we talked for a long time, and I did understand; I saw what I had never seen and the bitterness and sadness that had gathered up in me for all those years gradually washed away.

It was marvelously simple.

The great gifts of this season – or any season – can’t be put under the tree; you can’t wear them or eat them or drive them or play with them. We spend so much time on the lesser gifts – toys, sweaters, jewelry, the mint, anise and dill of Christmas – and so little on the great gifts – understanding, grace, peace and forgiveness. It’s no wonder that the holiday leaves us empty, because when it’s over, the only reminders we have are the dirty dishes and the January bills.

The Great Gift
The great gifts are like the one gift – the gift that began it all back there in Bethlehem of Judea. You can’t buy them, and they’re not on anybody’s shopping list. They come as He came – quietly, freely, unexpectedly – and if you’re not careful, you’ll miss them entirely.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Do you have unforgiveness in your life that is making life miserable for you?  Why not let Jesus show you how to forgive those who have hurt you? If you don’t know Jesus, we encourage you to pray the following prayer:

Lord Jesus, I want to know you personally. Thank you dying on the cross for my sins. I open the door of my life and receive You as my Savior and Lord. Thank you for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Take control of my life. Make me be the person you want me to be. Amen.

Saying this prayer is the first step towards a personal relationship with Jesus, who will guide and encourage you every step of the way.

Thank You John William Smith for such a wonderful story!

Life is a Gift!

Love Lee ♥

Thanksgiving 2010

I so love getting together with family and friends and this Thanksgiving was no exception! I am so blessed to have such a warm and loving family. We live, love, and laugh a lot!

The day started off very peaceful. I enjoyed my quiet time with the Lord; reading my Bible and praying. Then, it was time to get the turkey in the oven. Martha and I teamed up and got the dressing started. The meal was planned to start at 1pm and things were going as planned.

The first to arrive was my precious granddaughter Cheyenne. She was carrying a plate of homemade treats she had made all by herself.   She chose a recipe from her cookbook, and purchased all the ingredients with her own money. She did such a wonderful job…I am so proud of her!

Second to walk through the door was Cheryl, Ken, and Shawn with awesome treats in hand and was wearing some of the most beautiful smiles. Shawn has gotten so big I have to look up at him now.

As I continued to putter around in the kitchen, family and friends continued to stream through the door and I quickly lost track of who came when. I could tell when another person would arrive when I heard the volume rise and squeals of excitement could be heard throughout the house.

Soon after my dear friends the Cannans arrived, Alisha made her way to the kitchen, washed her hands, and began helping me de-bone the turkey. A concern Alisha had voiced to her mother about Thanksgiving was the turkey. She was worried it might be dry. Thank goodness I soaked the turkey in a brine for over 24 hours…Her concerns were quickly put to rest when she took her first bite.

As everyone began to arrive, the buffet table began to fill up. My family has always been good to pitch in and bring sides and desserts. One thing for sure is God had blessed each member of our family with the ability to cook. The food was phenomenal and as always there was more than enough for everyone to eat.

As is our custom once everyone arrived we circled around the table and each person voiced what they were thankful for. There is seldom a dry eye in the room when we are through and this Thanksgiving was not different. One of the most tender moments was watching my sister and her husband embrace after the blessing. I was blessed to be a witness to it. God is so good and has richly blessed my sister and her husband.

Soon after the meal was over Susan ran to the store and picked up a couple of newspapers end the hunt was on. Everyone was in pursuit of an item they were going to purchase on “Black Friday”. Who would have believed the newspaper would provide the whole family with hours of entertainment.

Oh, and speaking of entertainment…We had piano playing, ballet, and hand slapping games, and of course FOOTBALL…Activities of different sorts in every room. Priceless times!!!

 There were some who were not with us this Thanksgiving and they were missed terribly. Both Richard and Smokey had to work, Lindsey spent the holiday with her dad, Rayfard and Evelyn were celebrating a family member’s birthday, Debbie and Greg were in Arkansas with their grandkids…Our oldest daughter Tori lives out-of-town and was not able to come home but called to wish everyone “A Happy Thanksgiving”. To each of you…”You Were Missed”

What fun memories we made, what great food we ate, and what incredible thanks we gave to our Father in heaven for blessing us!

We are family…

Love Lee ♥