Thursday, February 26, 2009

Attention Prayer Warriors! Prayer Request ~ Nebraska/Ethiopia

Hello my friends!

Today I am asking that you say a prayer for my friend Paula & her family! I posted back in January about she and her husband adopting twins from Ethiopia! (Click Here)

Well tomorrow is their court date! Here is a post from Paula's blog today:

"I am a nervous wreck. Our court date is February 27. Since Addis Ababa is 9 hours ahead of us (see the clock on the left side of the blog), that means that our case will come before the court sometime in the wee hours of the morning while we are sleeping. My stomach is in knots.Thank you all for your prayers and well-wishes. I hope to have good news to post tomorrow! "

If you could lift Paula, Tom, Kenneth, Emily, Anna and those sweet twin girls up in prayer. If you could pray that this court hearing is successful, as sometimes the first go around isn't always successful; if you could pray for these sweet twins who's lives will change dramatically (for the good) in the coming months! They are closer than ever to these sweet girls coming home to Nebraska!

Our Gracious Heavenly Father. Today I give you all the praise and thanksgiving this heart can offer for my friend Paula and her family. You have moved them to open their hearts and their home to these sweet little girls who for now live an ocean away. Only through Your grace can a family from the Midwest be linked to two tiny girls in an African country. Only by You can they be called family. Today as I bend I knee I humbly implore you to grant wisdom to the court system and that the decision be that all systems are go... moving another step closer to joining this family together as one cohesive unit. I trust Your great wisdom and turn this over into Your mighty hands. In the saving, powerful, awesome name of Jesus I pray.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Take it to the Lord ~ Week 4

I cannot believe we are on week 4! What a journey in prayer I am on. Some days it's easy, so days it's more difficult. The discipline of prayer time each morning is something I desire, but have to admit there were a few days that it was easier to sleep a bit longer and then hurry through my devotions. I have learned not to beat myself up on those days. It's not that I was not in communication with the Father, I talk to Him a lot throughout the day. But not having that intense, quiet time... well, I missed it! I had to learn that as I want to deepen my prayer time with the Lord, that I cannot be a perfect prayer. But I will perserve in my prayer journey, continue to grow in my prayer life and my intimate relationship with God.

Your prayer requests from last week have been written on those strips, prayed over and soon will hang in our church. A visual reminder of our requests to God.

One of the verses we focused on last week was Matthew 17:20

...I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."

I have to say, this week I have seen some mountains moved. Due to the confidentiality of a certain prayer request, I cannot divulge the background... but a mountain of healing is beginning in many, many lives. Praise God! His grace was abundant! Believe me sisters, this was big, and it was only by God's grace that this could happen. There was a lot of prayer covering this situation. But the prayer doesn't stop here. The prayers must and will continue!

A mountain that needs moved doesn't necessarily have to be something as large as the Rocky Mountains. Your mountain might seem small, but it's important to God and He wants it moved! Healing can happen, mountains can be moved, relationships restored... pray, pray, pray!

This week our focus is on the Lord's Prayer. So I ask two things from each of you. One, I would love your prayer requests, so I can pray for you. Two... pray the Lord's prayer. Really pray it. Ponder the words... think of their meaning in your life & the lives of those around you. Your family, friends, co-workers, community. I cannot wait until next Monday when I can share what I have learned this week studying and praying The Lord's Prayer.

So, I would like to pray again this week for you. Post a request by clicking the comment link or you can email me!

Love you all!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Collecting Recipes Over Coffee

My pal Kim at Kim and Her Coffee (love the name of that blog and love that girl too)
is hosting Collecting Recipes Over Coffee! Click here for the info.
This week's theme: Soups, Stews & Chili!

How perfect for the waning days of a very cold winter! I have to admit... I have not made my soup yet. I did not get home until late last night. The soup won't be made for tonight's supper either as I will be leading our Small Group, so I won't have any pictures of a yummy soup and my cozy kitchen! This is a soup recipe I got from a Food Board I visit. It's very tasty and it's wonderful because you make it in your crockpot/slow cooker. Simmers all day!

Beef Barley Soup

1 lb. of stew beef cut into 1/2" chunks

2 cups carrots (rough chop)1 cup celery (chopped)

1 large onion diced1/2 c uncooked barley

1/4 c fresh parsley chopped

6 cups of beef or vegetable stock

3/4 tsp dried basil1 bay leaf

2 tbs. catsup

Salt & Pepper to taste


Brown the beef in a non-stick saute pan in small amount of olive oil. (I tossed the beef in a flour before browning – I put a bit of salt and pepper in the flour too)Remove beef chunks and put in crockpot. Add the diced vegetables to the pan and stir them around to pick up the flavor bits. I added one minced garlic clove. Add 1/4 cup of broth to the saute pan and stir. Move vegetables to crockpot with the beef and add the remaining ingredients.

Cook on low for 8 hours

OK... now I am hungry!

For now I will sit back and enjoy another cup of coffee...

Monday, February 16, 2009

Take it to the Lord ~ Week 3

What a week! How I loved spending time with our Father... presenting my requests, praying for so many of you. Deep communion, precious God time... and I took all of you with me! I want you to know that even if I have not had time to personally contact you via email, that I have prayed for you and your requests. I also want to thank you for praying for our group this past Wednesday. We had such a great time... and it was truly a blessed meeting.

I also have to tell you that the prayer chain in the sanctuary is a sight to behold. All those prayer requests represented on those strips of paper! So many of them! And God has heard all of them!

This week we will be focusing some of our workbook time on going into a quiet room and praying. Our Pastor made a comment in his sermon that struck me... I wrote it down quickly on the sermon notes page of my bulletin and I am sure it's not verbatim, but it went something like this. Prayer can be a group activity, but we might not always hear what the Father wants to say to us in group prayer. Not that group prayer isn't important... certainly it is. But we also have to spend some alone time with God to really hear Him! I have so enjoyed my alone time with Him during this "Take it to the Lord" renewal time. I have also enjoyed my group prayers as well. But that alone time... it's so precious. Kind of like when you can spend some alone time with one of your kids, a friend or spouse. You can have a great time in a group... but oh the sweetness of one on one time!

So, here we go... today begins week 3 and again I say that I would love to pray for you, your family, friend, church, work... you name it. Either leave a comment or prayer request by clicking the comment link at the bottom of this post, or feel free to send me an email.

But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

~ Matthew 6:6

Much love to each of you...

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Blog Award - Friendship!

What an honor that I have received a blog award from my dear bloggy friend Donna! Thank you sweet friend! You made my day! :)

Here is the description of the award..."The citation reads: These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in prizes or self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers! There's an instruction that comes with this award. Deliver this award to 8 bloggers who must choose 8 more and include this text into the body of their award."

Like Donna and so many others, I originally started this blog to put my thoughts down on paper and share my faith and my life. It's funny... when this journey began... this blog was private. For invited family and friends only. The LPM blog is the vehicle God used to inspire me to begin blogging in the beginning, and it was the LPM blog that led me to so many other blogs of Christian women that were open to everyone! So, with a deep breath I made my blog public.

What a joy it has been. I can say I have made friends with so many lovely ladies across our country. There are no pretenses, no age limits... we have very different lives, but have so much in common. And the most important thread - our love for Jesus Christ and our desire to know him more intimately. To share this faith in Christ with all who will read!

I never imagined the blessings I would receive from blogging. Re-connecting w/ an old friend, making new friends and the possibility of meeting some of you in person! Oh I will hug your sweet necks when that happens! Sharing your ups and downs... trials and joys... what a community in Christ we have!

I have had the privelege to pray for so many of you and the blessing of so many of you praying for me!

A heartfelt thank you to all of you who read my blog! You are all a bright spot in my days!

So with that: Here is the guideline/instruction that comes with this award:

Deliver this award to 8 bloggers who must choose 8 more and include this text into the body of their award."

With that I want to pass this award along to Kim, Christy, Kim, Angie , Paula, Gina, Elaine, Yolanda & Sweet Pea - Paula.

How difficult it was to pick just 8 - so I picked 9! I also knew that even know I wanted to, I couldn't pick dear Sarah since she just delivered her baby girl Anna Claire!!!! Praising Jesus for that sweet baby!

12My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command. 15I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.
~ John 15: 12-15

Monday, February 9, 2009

Take it to the Lord ~ Week 2

What a privelege it was this past week to lift so many of you and your requests up in prayer. I do pray you felt God's presence, comfort and peace this past week. Again this morning I lifted each one of you from last week up by name. There is so much I learned this last week. The joy of praying for you, the joy it gives God when we pray - and our desire to become more intimate with Him. And... not to forget to lift my own little self up in prayer. By Friday the enemy knew what was up - and boy did he try to launch and attack. I hadn't really been paying attention to something that had been keeping my heart in bondage for a few months. It was one of those things that I had shoved to the back burner, hadn't laid it our for Him to handle... so the enemy saw the crack and tried to weasel his slimy way in. After falling into a heap... in tears the Lord lifted me up. With the words of scripture and His comforting arms. Yes, I learned not to forget to also pray for myself. I also had not started my day w/ the workbook and prayer as I had all week long. I thought - "well I am home today, so I will have my prayer time after lunch." Not that I had to do it in the morning, but it obviously was a morning I really needed to!

Psalm 55:22 Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee:

In the midst of some of those Friday tears, while trying to clean house, emotions boiling over, I went to wipe down a coaster I had made from a stone tile and a stamp. (I had spilled some hot cocoa on the coaster - go figure) Those words were stamped right there on the coaster. That's when I fell into a heap. I called my husband - I am sure he was barely able to understand what I was trying to say because of all the bawling. I was telling him that the Lord is so good to me and knows exactly what I need at exactly the right time. Jim then started to talk about that day's devotion that I hadn't opened yet. So yes, I stopped everything and went to the Lord in prayer. And the first verse listed for that day was another verse that I NEEDED at that exact time. What a friend we have in Jesus friends!

So today begins Week 2

I would love to pray for you, your family, friend, church, work... you name it. Either leave a comment or prayer request by clicking the comment link at the bottom of this post, or feel free to send me an email.
As I lift you in prayer this week, I ask you to do the same for me. Also for the many members of my church who are doing the same thing - a focus on prayer and our intimate relationship w/ God.

The prayer chain is growing and I can't wait to take a picture and show it to you all after the 6 week workbook focus is complete!

Oh, and one more thing - our small group meets for the first time this week as well. Wednesday at 6:45. If you could pray for our group by name: Kristen, Jim, Dale, Tonja, Larry, Sandy, Dale, Judy, Anna & Jason... I would be so appreciative! I am so excited to be leading our group in this journey of prayer! What an adventure it will be!

Love you all!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Thankful Thursday!

I have read several posts over the past weeks written by my bloggy friends who participate in "Thankful Thursdays". I haven't participated prior to today... but there has been something on my heart this week that I am thankful for, and I wanted to post about it! I understand the guidelines for thankful Thursday is to list 5 things you are thankful for during the current week.

Today I want to focus on one... that will lead to a list of 5 more things I am thankful for. (I know that's 6) :)

A few of my Siestas are either in the midst of, or are starting Bible studies in the days or week to come. Oh how the Scriptures speak! With that... here is my "thankful" list for you fellow students of God.

1.) I am thankful for those God has callen to facilitate a Bible Study...

The bravery and strength God gives you to step out of the boat to do this is amazing! Whether it's your first time as a leader or you have been leading for many years... I am praising God for you today and I prayed for you this morning.

2.) I am thankful for those who make the study of Scripture their way of life.

The life in Christ God so desires for us!

3.) I am thankful for those who, for the first time, are participating in a Bible study.

I can remember back to the first Bible study I participated in... The book of Daniel (whew - picked an easy book didn't I) It was in the early 90's. Prior to that I always was afraid to join a study - in my mind, I thought I didn't know enough about the Bible to join a group. And then it hit me... ummm, that's why they call it Bible STUDY - so I can learn! A few years later - I was leading studies. Now that's something I never thought would happen, but God sure knew that it would. So if you are afraid to join a group, fear not friend... your life will be changed by what God has to say to you in scripture!

4.) I am thankful for the thousands of studies available to us and for those gifted to write those studies.

5.) And finally, and most importantly, I am thankful for Scripture... for God's Word... our guide, our road map... oh where would I be without it! That the Ancient Words impart... soak up the Faithful Words of God!

This is one of those songs that makes my heart well up! It's for you friends.

With much love,

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Take it to the Lord in Prayer

This morning I rose early... completed day 1 of week 1 in my Workbook of Living Prayer and then postured myself to talk to God. To pour out my requests. I want you to know - each of you who emailed me or posted yesterday and last week w/ prayer requests, that I offered them up to Him this morning.
P roclaiming Him as Lord of all, thanking Him for the R elationship I have with Him & with all of you! A sking Him, going to Him with confidence and faith, Y es - responding to His call to prayer with a Yes Father! PRAY!
So many requests, but He hears them all. After my quiet time I opened the blinds in our bedroom. It was still very dark, but I could see that snow was quietly falling. Lovely! I thought about how that pure snow was covering the "ick"... blanketing the earth.

I thought about how prayer, like the snow covers a multitude of hurts, heartaches, pain, worries.... my sweet friends, your requests were lifted up and covered w/ the blanket of love and grace that comes from our Lord and Savior!

Pic outside my front door this morning... 3 inches of fresh snow has fallen this morning!

I loved a quote from Maxie Dunnam in my workbook... it's been highlighted and I think it's worth repeating here "Things happen when we pray that do not happen when we don't pray." * So pray... go to the throne with the confidence that the Lord will hear your requests and respond with grace and love that our human minds cannot comprehend. Listen for HIS response... it might not happen overnight... but keep asking! Persevere in Prayer! What a privilege it is to take it all to the Lord in prayer. In the words of Dr. Rich Bimler from the sermon he shared w/ our congregation this past Sunday "Prayer is not a 'gotta do' it's a 'get to do' "!

Love you all!

* Dunnam, Maxie. The Workbook of Living Prayer. 1994

Monday, February 2, 2009

Living Prayer Week 1

Ready, Set, Pray!

Week 1

Last week in my post Footprints & Prayer I wrote about the journey and focus that our church and our small groups will be involved in for the next several weeks. That focus is prayer. I expressed that on Monday's I will be asking for your prayer requests. I will pray over them and I will be posting them on our Prayer Wall &/or our Prayer Chain that will en-circle our Sanctuary.

You can either email me a request, or click on the "cherished comments" link at the bottom of this post with your requests. Jim and I will be spending 1/2 hour each morning (except Sunday's when we worship) in prayer. We will pray and journal separately, and then come together at the end of the 1/2 hour to pray together. It is an honor and privelege to include requests to our Father on your behalf during this time. We are taking this very seriously! So, I also ask, that while we embark on this journey... developing a new prayer life, that you pray for us. I know the enemy will be lurking as satan would like nothing more than to keep us from communing with God.

I have all the tools... God has equipped me... Ready, Set, Pray...

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.

~ Mark 1:35

I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

John 14:12-14

Much Love,