Muddled Mind

It’s early in the morning here at the cabin. Everyone is still sleeping as I close myself into my little room with only my faithful dog and my cup of coffee. I try to focus on the task at hand, but so many thoughts are crowding my mind for attention. I pick up the dulcimer and begin to strum. Many times that will quiet my racing mind and help me to focus on the Lord.

“Just a Closer Walk With Thee”
“Just As I Am”
“Sweet Hour of Prayer”

Sometimes the mind clears by now. Not today. I move to “In The Pines” and “Amazing Grace”. Things are beginning to fall into order.

What do you do when things are all jumbled? Even when I try to live right and keep my mind clean, I get assaulted. Strangely it’s not always with ‘worldly’ thoughts. Instead, prayer concerns of family & friends … our own household concerns … thoughts of the coming days … you name it. When I am praying, little thoughts of what I should be “doing” keep trying to distract me; and when I’m “doing”, thoughts of how I should be more focused on my Spiritual growth and outreach hound me. Please tell me that I’m not alone in this. I guess the distractions are the worst when I am trying to write. A simple post may take only a few hours and some take days. I can’t count the number that were started and ended up in the computer trashcan.

I have found that sorting through the muddled mess in my mind can be awful time consuming. Personally, I think that’s where satan hits us the hardest – in the mind. If he can keep us preoccupied and focused on self, we can’t be effective for God. I have to choose each day not to allow myself to get caught up in the ‘self’-awareness bog. I take everything to God. I pray for the family & friends who are concerning me instead of holding onto their problems as my own. I have to give them to God or the weight of their issues would smother me. I give our own family concerns to Him as well. If I can’t “fix” it … He can.

Often a long walk with Bandit gives me time to pray and sort out my priorities. Time is so short.

What is the most important thing? Serving God.

How can I best do that today? Get close to Him and reach out to others.

What is stopping me from doing this? I list these issues to God one by one and give them to Him to deal with.

Now, what can I do today/right now to best serve God? My priorities start to line up.

I would like to say that I am such a mighty Christian that I am on track 24/7. But that would be lying. I struggle with ‘self’ every day of the week. I have to choose God’s Will every day. With all the distractions in this world & in my own mind … that’s tough. I figure that when satan’s minions are smacking us the hardest, it must mean that we are getting closer to winning a victory for the Lord. That gets the adrenaline pumping. It gives me a deep-down determination to push harder. I can’t let ‘stuff’ distract me … we are too close.

Whenever we come to mind … a fleeting thought … whisper a little prayer for us. God has given us a work to do, and the devil is throwing everything in the book at us right now. That encourages me. We must be on the right track. There’s a victory right around the corner if we can just stay focused and not surrender to distractions.

Right now, I hear footsteps upstairs so that means it’s time to move on to the ‘doing’ part of the day. Before I close, I want to thank everyone who have been praying for and encouraging us. You will never truly know how much you help us stay on track. I pray for you as well. Soon, very soon, we will be praising God together in His presence! Until then …

Have a great day & may the Lord bless you.


Another Random Question

I’ve been doing some reading lately, and a thought started tickling my mind. It may sound a bit crazy to most, but let your imagination go a little crazy for a moment.

Question: What if the Apostles would have had access to our modern technology?

I don’t know where these thoughts come from. Some tell me that I have too much time on my hands. Others simply think I spend too much time alone. To be truthful, this kind of thinking is more pronounced when I am around other people on a regular basis. But back to the question, What if the Apostles of the New Testament had access to our modern technology?

Just imagine the emails. Paul could have zipped off a couple dozen epistles, by email, to the Thessalonian church in just a matter of hours; and then the church could have forward them along to each of the members. He could have saved himself a lot of walking and maybe even some prison time by simply setting up an office in a little village or cave. With the electronic devices we have today, such as cell phones & the ever-intrusive IM, he could have easily eluded capture before the Romans even approached the outskirts of town.

Just think of how the Psalms and prophecies would have circulated around the globe in Forwards. I’m sure they would have been complete with the cute little pictures & animation.

I personally don’t Twitter, thus don’t really understand it … but Peter could have broadcast his epistles to the world a sentence at a time. Do you suppose that he would have used the standard LOL, or ROFL? How about TTYL?

John the Revelator would have become youtube’s biggest hit. The only drawback would be that the contents would have been in little 5-minute segments. Don’t you know that the comment sections under the videos would be full! There are programs where a person can stream “live”. As a matter of fact, we can watch the folks praying at the Western Wall in Jerusalem 24 hours a day. (I wonder if that’ll be the technology used when the two Witnesses testify during the Tribulation.)

All of this information could then be compiled in a multimedia website, with each taking turns manning the interactive bulletin boards.

Technology is truly amazing. Most of it became daily living essentials during my lifetime. There are some really great folks using all of the above to spread God’s Word and encourage the Saints. But somehow I can’t help but think that sharing the Good News is loosing its personal touch. Remember the good old days where two folks would sit at the kitchen table and talk about God and His mercy over a danish and a cup of coffee? Once upon a time, when I was constantly on the go, I kept a Bible in the car. I never knew when I would need it to share with others. There would be bookmarks and highlights marking the Roman Road passages.

You know, Paul could never have reached that jailer for the Lord if he wasn’t in that jail. It was an up-close and personal moment that led the Ethiopian to the Lord as well. I want to encourage you to keep your Bibles handy, and always look for an opportunity to share Jesus on a personal level. There is absolutely no part of life that Jesus and God’s plan for us doesn’t fit in. And in the meantime, keep those fwds, emails, and text messages going out! ROFL!

Have a great day, and may the Lord bless you.


While There Was Silence

I’m sorry for the long silence. It’s been a busy time here at the cabin. An update on the latest events …

Meja has moved back home. She and her kitten “Moina” have settled in nicely. They brought youth & excitement back into the ‘old folks home’ and are adding a refreshing breeze of life. Welcome home Sweetheart! Bandit & Moina keep me entertained during the day while everyone is away at work. I’ll add pictures of the two ruffians in the sidebar from time to time.

On July 4th, I became a grandma! Due to complications in my future daughter-in-law’s health, my little granddaughter had to be taken by C-section two months early. It was & is a very exciting, yet turbulent time. But thanks to the many prayer warriors and the amazing grace of God, the delivery went smoothly and Savannah Elizabeth was born. I was told that she came out kicking and screaming. Sounds like she is going to be a real fighter. She will be in the neonatal unit for several weeks yet. The last update is that she’s had a set back, but she is progressing quickly. My future daughter-in-law has experienced some complications, but she is on the road to recovery and is expected to leave the hospital within the next few days. My son, well he is holding up like a trooper as he juggles work, trips to the hospital, and spending time at home with his soon-to-be son.

My youngest son, with the help of his wife, has become a youth minister at their local IHOP (International House of Prayer). It’s a big challenge, but I am excited for him/them. Today’s youth are in strong need of men & women of God who are called to step up to the plate. Folks, today’s youth are in trouble. Most have never entered the doors of a church. They have never had the sound Biblical teaching that was so common when I was a child.

A couple of weeks ago, I received the movie “Saint John in Exile” from Netflix. A lot of the “Christian” movies today aren’t Biblically accurate and have to be viewed with a prayer for discernment. This particular film is a one-man play with Dean Jones portraying John the Revelator during his time on Patmos. It was filmed back in the 1990s, and if you haven’t seen it … I strongly recommend it! I have never seen anything quite like it. I guess the best way I can describe it is that it made Jesus even more real to me. I truly saw a picture of Jesus in that performance.

While I was previewing this film, a certain friend of Meja’s came to mind. I had introduced him to Jesus a few weeks before and felt certain that the film would give him a better picture of the Jesus of the Bible … not just the Jesus in the history books. I had been praying for this young man for months, and have been concerned that once he left for college this fall, he would drift out of our lives before the introduction to Jesus could be complete. As the film ended, I found myself weeping and asking God for just one more opportunity to share Jesus with this young man. I was very specific in my prayer … I asked the Lord to bring him to the house and have him watch the movie with me. Call me crazy if you want, but when I finished praying, I felt sure that my prayer would be answered. I told God that because of that feeling of assurance, I was going to hang onto the movie until the young man showed up. You know, satan’s minions began attacking me immediately with thoughts like … ‘What makes you think that this young man is just going to show up at your door?’ … ‘If this fellow does show up, why would he possibly want to waste his time watching a video with an old woman?’ … ‘All this continuous talk of Jesus is going to turn him off to Christianity.’ … the list goes on. As the thoughts came, I’d push them aside. I just kept praying. I knew that this was not a spontaneous young man; but I also know that he gives careful thought to all that he sees & hears. I knew that if he could just see what Christ & Christianity was truly about, he would consider it careful and come to the right conclusion. I kept on praying and impatiently waiting on him to show up.

Just a few days later, I get a call late one morning from this fella. He wanted to know if he could stop by to drop off some things that Meja & I had loaned him. (normally, he would have just given them to Meja at work.) The timing of this call was terrible! There was a full day of chores left to do … I was hot & sweaty … and I needed a shower desperately! So, I told him to come right over. I wasn’t going to give satan even an extra minute to cause this young man to change his mind. The attacks began coming like a flood. I started praying intently! God was going to get him here, I was going to keep my word, stinky or not! Within minutes he was here. Just so happens he didn’t have to go to work for a few hours yet. And when I asked him to watch the video with me, he didn’t look at me like I was crazy. Instead, and without hesitation, he said “sure”.

Satan wasn’t through trying to stop the message from getting to him. As the movie began, the kitten he had given Meja pounced on him and tried to distract him with her antics. I started praying with all my might that God would settle the kitten down and not let him get distracted. You know, that kitten stopped playing and laid at our feet. She didn’t move again until the video was over. The phone started ringing. I deflected the callers and kept praying. Because the Lord answered each and every one of my prayers specifically, I knew that this message was meant for this young man. Deep in me, I know that this fella has a purpose in God’s plan. He watched intently and I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that the intended message went deep. As he was leaving, I told him that God has a purpose for his life and to seek the Lord. With a look of consideration, he nodded his head. After he left, I felt a deep sense of peace. The job that God had given me to do was done. Now, I continue to pray for him. I may or may not know the final outcome until I reach heaven’s gates. But that’s not what counts. What matters is that God answered all my prayers, (down to the smallest detail), and put me in the battle one more time.

Folks, God answers prayer! Not just my prayers – There is not a prayer uttered or thought that God does not answer. The answers are usually “Yes”, “No”, or “Wait”. If He didn’t give you the shiny red convertible that you were praying for … you may want to reconsider your prayer life. Ask God to put someone on your heart. Then start praying. We are all called, first & foremost, to be prayer warriors!

You know, when I first started writing this … I had something else in mind for today. Over the past few weeks, I have started dozens of topics. I couldn’t write. I was feeling a lot like Zacharias. It seems that God uses these ‘silent’ times to teach me. Then He opens the floodgates. As I continue to learn the most recent lesson, I’ll be passing it along. God is so very good!

Have a great day & may the Lord bless you!


Moving Day

Today starts the beginning of another chapter in our lives. Today is moving day for our daughter. Two jobs, seven days a week, and the economy was a bit much for her at this time. With much discussion, we’ve decided to circle the wagons for a spell and see what our family’s options are. It’ll be an adjustment for her to be back home. She’s been out of the house for about two years now. She left when she wasn’t much older than a child, and now she’s coming back a young lady. We can’t just slide back into the parent/teenager roles of the past. That will be a challenge for Honey & I … in turn, she will discover that us old folks haven’t been sitting stagnant in the pool either. We’ve changed, grown, and our quirks aren’t quite the same as when she left. She has to see us in a new light too.

I guess we don’t always stop to see our personal changes very often. The changes are rarely overnight. That may explain why the people who raised me aren’t the same people I know today. I’ve loved the changes they have gone through as they’ve gotten older; and I love the way our relationships have changed as well. I talked with my youngest son today for quite a while and I guess this “change” thing was on my mind, because I really listened to his thoughts and ideas. I take joy in the man he has grown up to be. Just like I am enjoying the ever-evolving relationships with all the kids. I feel pretty sure that the adjustments of Meja’s returning home will have it’s share of trials … it will also have it’s rewards. I look forward to rediscovering the woman that she is becoming.

Well the moving crew should be here any minute. I’d better get things moved around to accommodate her and her new kitten. Have a great day & may the Lord bless you!


God Provides

Well, we made it through the week of layoff in pretty good shape. Honey spent the week working around the house and gathering up scrap metal to haul off. This was a task that he has been wanting and needing to do for quite some time, but the collection place wasn’t open on Saturdays and it was impossible to work a full day and go the 40 plus miles to unload before they closed for the day. So, with a lot of effort, he and his Dad took advantage of the week, stayed at it, and a load of stuff rolled out of here about 5 AM Friday morning. I would have done a snoopy dance if it wouldn’t have been so early in the morning. I have been waiting a long time to see that stuff go away. Later he called from his folks’ house and said that the front end of his truck had gone out on the way home. Now isn’t that how things work? He and his Dad spent the rest of the day fixing the truck. All in all, the truck repairs came to about $5 more than the amount the scrap metal sold for. Is God good or what!?! We haven’t scrimped any more than we usually do, and God has gotten us through the week just fine. The last word Honey got was he goes back to work Monday morning. It’s been nice having him around this past week, and the best part has been the “peace”. No anxious moments, and no worries.

Across the road, our neighbors are feeling the pinch from the economy as bad, if not worse, than we are. We are hearing tempers flair more and more as the stress wears them down. The general mood around town is one of mounting anger. People are becoming overwhelmed with stress as the cost of living shoots up and the work hours are reduced. Whenever I hear folks say that the legislation that’s been passed in the federal & state governments won’t affect the people negatively, I look around and figure someone is lying. Unemployment is climbing, price of living is climbing, and people are working two jobs - and still not making ends meet.

We live very simply here at the cabin. Our only real extravagance is the internet. It’s an $8 dial-up connection through the phone company. That’s all we can get here in the meadow; and to be honest, that’s all we really need. We are simple folks and God provides all our needs, quite a few of our wants, and it’s becoming easier and easier to trust in Him completely. When the world continues to get scarier, we will be ready to rely on God for everything while the world around us will be in a panic. They have put their trust in the gods of education & money. Those gods will fail, and then what? Learning faith is the hardest thing we’ve ever had to do, and we’ve still got a long ways to go – but as God leads us, we have discovered a peace that we had only heard about. God will provide. I become more certain of that truth with each step we take in faith.

Walk in faith, have a great day & may the Lord bless you!


Looks Like Rain

Looks like rain. We apparently got a pretty good thunderstorm last night. After several days of record-breaking heat and overpowering humidity, the rain was more than welcome. This morning we woke to a soft breeze and cooler temperatures. It sure acts like we may get a real summer this year. We have already seen more warm days this season than we did all last summer. And as today progresses, the humidity is rising and it is looking like there may be more rain tonight. Will this be a gentle soaker or a gully-washer? Time will tell.

There seems to be another storm on the horizon for us as well. Honey went back to work about three weeks ago. There has been a question as to how the local construction industry will fare in these uncertain times. The general consensus has been that the bottom would eventually drop out; the question of ‘when?’ has been the unknown. Well, “when” seems to be coming sooner rather than later. Honey said that materials have been going out in pickups instead of dump trucks these past few weeks. The added federal taxes, and New Hampshire’s own ‘stimulus-type’ taxes, are becoming the nails in the coffin. Hours are being cut and businesses are teetering on the collapsing edge. Honey started looking for part-time work to supplement while we seek God’s guidance. Out of only two jobs available, he found a possible evening/weekend position with a trucking company that hauls linen to area hospitals. The owner told him that the position will hopefully expand to full-time in the coming months. If the dump trucks go silent, the transition to full-time with this other company may be an option. Right now, we are spending time together seeking God’s will & provision. We’ve learned not to fear. God has shown over and over that He hears our prayers and will lead us if we seek Him.

There are so many people out of work that we have been fortunate. Unlike the weather, we don’t have to question the intensity of the economic storm. The Bible has done what weather forecasters can’t seem to do … It tells us with complete certainty what the coming days will bring. The storm clouds cropping up around the country and around the world are going to bring a real devastating gully-washer. There is no question that we are living in the last days and things will progress as God said they would, no matter what man tries to do. It isn’t my intention to be the voice of doom. God knew how it was all going to progress to an end before He ever breathed life into man’s beginning. He gave us His Holy Word to help us know Him and to help us prepare. God didn’t instruct Honey and me to build a bunker in the middle of the desert so we could hide. He instructs us to get up close to Him, seek Him and pray.

“Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:12

When I opened my Bible just now to find a particular Scripture that talks about the promise of God’s provision, I saw this:

“For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.” Isaiah 25:4

This wasn’t the one I had been looking for, but it just seems to fit perfectly. If you are facing challenges that seem too big – seek God. He will be everything Isaiah described and so much more.

Remember, fear & faith can’t be maintained at the same time. It’s either one or the other. If you are afraid, seek God. Ask Him to build your faith. God is always in control and He always keeps His promises. With His help & guidance, we will get through the coming storms.

Have a great day, and may the Lord bless you!



It’s been busy here at the cabin the past few weeks. If I didn’t know any better, I would almost think that the world is spinning faster. I just don’t know where the days are going. It seems I don’t get started good before it’s time to turn out the lights and call it quits.

After Honey started back to work, the cabin started getting awful quiet. So about a week ago we added a new member to our family. His name is Bandit. He’s a 14-month-old chow mix. We had chows back when I was younger, so I took to him right off. Bandit has the look & protectiveness of a chow, and the personality of a lab. Unlike the full-blood chow, he’s very social and playful. And he has been great company for me while Honey is away.

We’ve had quite a time getting to know each other. I suspect that he earned the name Bandit for a reason. The dog steals socks and towels every chance he can. He doesn’t chew on them; he just sort of wads them up and lays on them. Oddly enough that’s about the only thing he doesn’t chew on.

Leash training has been a real challenge. The whole concept was new to him. In the beginning, he would fight the leash whenever I was leading him somewhere that he had no intention of going. As I watched him, I thought about how much he resembles me whenever God tries to direct my steps and I would get headstrong, wanting things my way. Bandit would often take the leash in his teeth and try to ‘lead’ me in the direction that he wanted to go. Haven’t I done similar things with God? Don’t I try to tell God through prayer how I want Him to respond to my needs? How many times have I cried out to God because events occurred that kept me from taking the path that ‘I’ wanted to take? God patiently teaches me that if I will just settle down and follow Him, my life could be so much better.

I’ve often heard it said that people choose pets that best reflect their own personalities. In learning Bandit’s personality, I guess there might be something to that. He is overly curious, very headstrong, and if left to his own devices for too long … very prone to getting into something he shouldn’t. Yep, that sounds like me all right.

Time’s up. Honey will be home soon and I still need to finish my chores & start supper. Have a great day & may the Lord bless you!