Sunday, March 5, 2017

The State of Our Nation - In God We Trust

I am disappointed. I am dismayed. I am annoyed. I am sad.

I know, it's not about me, but it is! I am an American citizen, born, tried, and true. I believe this is the most wonderful country on the planet, and while I want to visit every other country, I don't want to live anywhere but here. I am proud of my heritage, my people, and my land.

I am.

But I have a grieving heart as well. I often find myself feeling sad. If it were not for my faith in God, and knowing He is in total control, I would find myself on social media blasting about my issues with the current state of affairs in our government. Thank goodness I don't do that! I may make comments, but I don't attack, embarrass, or belittle. I was not raised to act that way. I trust God to keep me from treating others in this way.

One of the things that bothers me is the stark lack of decorum, of decent language, and respecting other's rights to their beliefs. When did it become a 'left thingy' to use totally indecent language? I mean, some of the words used over and over again in the same sentence are terribly offensive. Most of the people I see using this type of language are very well educated. Does that mean they have a pass to use these filthy words? What happened to the pride of writing and speaking eloquently, properly, without offense? Do we really want our children to grow to speak and write this way, not having an appreciation of good and decent language?

And the respect? Non-existent. It just is not present, obviously not even an option when I see folks blatantly slamming others over and over again just because they view an issue a bit differently. People who I have always thought to be loving and kind I might just not feel safe turning my back to now. Isn't that sad? Hate has overcome love, and slam-dunking a person's beliefs and morals is the new national past-time.

I want to love and respect everyone. But these people are destroying our culture, our reputation as the greatest country in the world, and have brought us to recognize the USA is not indestructible. It has become apparent to many that our homeland could become the next Rome. Why? Because they are trying to destroy all that is what has made and continues to make this country great. God, people with diversity coupled with tolerance (which means no demeaning, no violence), respect for each other and our land, and love. If you are filled with hate for anything not in your 'wish basket', then there is no room for real love. And that is the saddest part of all. The loss of love, caring, and working together.

We voted for a new president. Yes, I voted for President Trump. But even if I had not, he is now my president. And he should be afforded all rights to the office as each president before him has been. Instead, he is being undermined, and encumbered in so many ways, resulting in a situation that has never, ever occurred in the USA before...he does not have his cabinet, which he needs to efficiently run this nation. Shame on those who are inhibiting his right to what he was elected to. Shame on those who think only of their own personal agenda instead of the rights of others, and the right of this country to survive.

Have I given up? No, of course not. This nation has faced these issues before, though not on as great a scale as now. Not with the threats and dangers that now exist across the globe. Not with so much at stake. I believe we can turn it around, make it great again, a safe place to work, play, raise our children in, and live happily in. Where there is life, there is hope. And where there is hope, there is God. And In God We Trust!

Blessings!

The State of Our Nation

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Introducing: My New Blog Journey: Walking With God Through Cancer

This past year has brought many changes in my life. In late February, it was discovered that I might have uterine cancer. Turns out, that was indeed a fact.

The whirlwind of surgeries, and radiation treatment, have left me with issues I never imagined I would ever face. But then, who does? Who says, 'I think I might have cancer someday.'?

But when it does indeed happen to you, a whole other world begins to develop, and very quickly.

I just wanted to let you know, since I have been absent for some time, that I am actively writing again, and will be writing on this blog once again, as well as the new one above. It is located at WalkingWithGodThroughCancer.blogspot.com. I will be adding that address on the sidebar, and making some other updates to the blog site as well. Let's just say, lots of things have changed in my life, and I need to make everything as updated as I can.

God is still in control, and still on the throne, and I, for one, am very thankful!!!

God Bless!

Lili

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

A Thought For Today, Nov 4, 2015

A Thought For Today
6 minsEdited
"We come up to the truth of God, we confess we are wrong, but go back again; then we come up to it again, and go back; until we learn that we have no business to go back." Excerpt, 'My Utmost for His Highest', by Oswald Chambers, November 4th.
We are human, and though we may be saved, we still fall short, and we still sin. We think we are on the right path, walking close with the Lord. But suddenly we find ourselves over in left field somewhere we know we do not belong.
Thankfully, we can always 'come back' to Him. His grace allows us to confess and crawl back into His arms. They are always ready to receive us home.
'Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.' James 4:8
Blessings!

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Halloween: A Chance to Be Hospitable

It's Halloween, and I am under attack by all the scary, beautiful, and definitely interesting creatures gracing my front porch.  It is only I and my trusty Boston Terrier, Peanut, serving up candy delights to the swarms of children heading up and down our street.

It takes me back to when I was a child, and my parents and parents of our neighbors and friends would take a group of us out when we were small, traveling together in a pack, and scoring big!  The porches we stepped onto were familiar porches, the folks answering the door and handing out candy and apples were also.  We did not worry about straight pins or needles in our treats.  Never was there a care of dangerous substances either.  No, we had absolute trust in our neighbors, and so did our parents.

We also, in our tight and sweet community, did not worry about traffic.  People were not always out and about in the evenings as they are now.  And it seemed like they had the added sense to know that kids and pets lived on the streets of our neighborhood. Some of us lived on Shannon Ave, and others lived on May and Marietta.  Then there were kids we knew on South Shannon Ave. It was a super nice neighborhood filled with super nice people. No, we never knew a worry or a care.  Only excitement for Trick or Treating!

Things are different now.  I could go back to that same neighborhood, and while I would recognize the houses, some of the trees, and all the streets, I think it's a fair bet to say I would not know a single person.  If I had a child who wanted to go Trick or Treating, I would not feel safe allowing them to step on those porches.  I would have to inspect any candy, and I would worry frightfully that they would dart away from me into traffic.  Yes, it's quite different now.

Of course, I certainly could be wrong about the new people living in the old houses.  But still, they are an unknown.  There is definitely great benefit to belong to a neighborhood where every house is a safe house, every person is known, and where it is a certainty you will return home safe and sound at the end of the evening.

I watch the kids and the parents in my 'grown up' neighborhood, and I am impressed that they are all polite, the kids are well behaved and remember their manners, and the parents stay close by, and then wave and call out 'Thank you!' as they collect their children to move on to the next house.  I am counting my blessings that the neighborhood I live in now is like the one from my childhood in many ways.

While we do not believe in Halloween as a holiday, as its beginnings are not the things we believe in as Christians, we do enjoy these kids, and their parents, and give thanks that we are able to step out on our porch and welcome them there to stand with us and spend a bit of time with us.  It is a form of hospitality, which can be a rare commodity to find these days!

"Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it."  Hebrews 13:2 (NIV)

Saturday, October 24, 2015

TRAGEDY DURING A TIME OF CELEBRATION

Today is a sad day in Stillwater, Oklahoma, and for North America.  Whether we follow football or not, we do know that to us it is a time honored tradition in our colleges and universities to experience Homecoming Weekend.  This is a time when current students and families, and previous graduates, attendees, staff, townies, come together to join in the excitement of the 'BIG GAME'.  There is often a parade in the morning, the game in the afternoon, and then a dance, or prom, in the evening.

But today's celebratory atmosphere during the parade at Oklahoma State University (OSU) was marked by tragedy.  A car plowed into an unmanned police motorcycle, and then proceeded on into the crowd of celebrants.  At the time of this writing, there are 3 dead, at least 34 injured, and 8 victims were airlifted to area hospitals.

The game, of course, was not cancelled.  When it began, the players and coaches held a moment of silence in the center of the field.  The bodies of the deceased were still laying where they landed less than 3 blocks away.  Many will ask why the game was not cancelled.  They will wonder if this means that the lives lost and those harmed were not of enough importance to focus on that tragic event, instead of a sports event.

I say, whether they played the game against Kansas or not, nothing would have been changed by cancelling the game.  It would not have brought the dead back to life. It would not really have brought comfort to those who were injured, or to the families of all of the victims. They are not paying attention to the fact that the game was played.  They are grieving, clinging to one another, mourning the losses and the injured lives.  I can tell you, if it was anyone close to me, I would not have cared one way or another about whether the game was played or not.

Also, many people traveled many miles, and spent quite a bit of money to be there.  Would that be fair, to cancel the game?  If this had been an ongoing crime scene, with events still occurring, then yes, it might have been the wise thing to do to cancel.  But it was not.  The woman who was driving had already been subdued and arrested.  Those injured were receiving care.  Those who were shaken up just because they were there were recovering from the terror of that moment.

It is indeed a day of tragedy.  We must pray that the survivors do just that...survive.  We also must pray for peace, for any assistance the victims and families need to be provided, and that answers will be given as soon as possible.  This tragedy is not just for today.  It will continue as people try to make sense of the accident, as the victims recover from their injuries and put their lives back together, and as the families and friends of those who died today lay their loved ones to rest, and mourn. And there is another person, and another family, who will have a road to travel as well, the driver of the car and her loved ones. We are called to remember them and pray for them as well.

It is a sad day in Stillwater, Oklahoma.  I don't know who won the game, and I don't care.  I care only that people remember, and learn from this.  I pray for forgiveness and healing, by the grace of the Lord Jesus.

Blessings.



Friday, October 16, 2015

I WILL NOT LIVE IN FEAR

Early this morning, my husband and I were awakened by persistent and loud pounding on our kitchen door, which is our main entrance from our driveway. This was at about 2 am.  Our dogs began barking, and we were shocked out of sleep by the whole thing.

My husband did what I knew he would do...he grabbed his shotgun out of his gun cabinet, made me stay behind him, and made his way to the door.  Our dogs stayed behind me. Safe, huh?

The knocking had stopped, and we both saw a policeman walking towards a big police SUV that was parked sideways on our street, right at the entrance to the side street. Our driveway is on that side street. So hubs went outside, and approached the policeman. They talked for several moments and then both came to our porch, where the policeman explained to me what had happened.

Our neighborhood has been kind of under siege the past few months.  We have lived here for nearly 8 years and have had no problems of any kind. We love our house, our neighbors, our location. We are very happy here.  Oh, sure there has been the occasional break in, or cars having change stolen, but none of it on a regular basis.  But for the past 5 to 6 months, the instance of crime or criminal intent has been skyrocketing.  We have a neighborhood Facebook Page, where we learn of these things, and share our stories. So this morning, I was able to add ours to the mix.

The policeman was very kind, and explained that someone had seen a man looking in and around our cars.  Now, they are parked very close to our entrance, yet our dogs heard nothing. Anyway, the person who witnessed this called the police, and they came right out.  As they pulled around the corner, they saw the man leaving the area of our cars and walking down the driveway. They apprehended him and placed him under arrest.

The officer asked both my husband and I to examine our cars to make sure nothing was missing or damaged. Since we have a habit of never leaving anything of value in our vehicles, we were not overly concerned. Yes, I have a couple of CD's in there, but they are copies, just in case.  And yes, I have a favorite pair of sunglasses in the space behind my seat, but I have more besides.   Nothing was missing, and nothing was damaged.

The officer and my husband then walked around our property, just to make sure there was no attempt at breaking in, or any other damage, which thankfully there was not.

So today, we are giving thanks. It could have been a different story. It may have been a tragic one, or one that I would not be able to tell. My husband and I discussed installing sensor lighting outside our house, which would quickly discourage prowlers.  And a new fence that would conceal our back yard, and make our dogs safer as well.  I told my neighbor/friend, and she is investigating the possibility of our neighborhood buying them in bulk, at a discount. The installation of many sensor lights would certainly be a problem for those with evil intent.

I refuse to be afraid in my own home, in my own neighborhood. We have an alarm, and we use it. Many homes here do, but some of those have still been broken into. One woman and her dog, earlier this week, was targeted by a driver, who appeared to deliberately be trying to hit her. That driver went on to destroy mailboxes and recycling bins all throughout the neighborhood.  So you see, I very easily could choose to be afraid!  But I will not live in fear.

God is my refuge, my protector, my source.  He lives in our home, as well as our hearts, and He gives us the peace that only He can give.  Jesus has promised to deliver us from all harm.  We choose to trust Him, and I will not back down. He will help us take our home and our neighborhood back, and may He be glorified in the process.

I am going to pray for this man, that he will find Jesus, and his life will be filled with good intent rather than evil.  After all, Jesus loves him too.

'I will lie down and sleep in peace, for You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.' Psalm 4:8 (NIV)

Blessings!