29 Dec

The End is Near…

…the end of 2017 that is! And of course that also means planning for 2018, goals, hopes, dreams and yep ONE WORD to rule them all… those goals, hopes and dreams!

For me, this is always a key to starting the year off with a purposeful direction in mind. This past year it was JOY… and for sure exercising joy even when I didn’t feel joyful always re-directed my thoughts and my very heart to the joy that is found in the Lord, no matter what! It has been good to find joy in even the most devastating events of the year. In the news especially! Between all the hurricanes, fires, mass shootings and war I felt joy when viewing the people who stepped in to assist, comfort and restore those affected!  In my personal life, a sad occurrence with my son has a bit of light to it in that he may prayerfully be overcoming some life hurdles. Ultimately what I learned about JOY was that even in the darkest times, if one looks for it joy can be found-and there at the center is my God!

Before I share my word and verse for this year, I want to share what my #1 hope/goal is. I’ve had the moniker and web space for Abiding Ways Ministries and this blog for a very long time.  (Since Feb 2002!) and sadly, haven’t done a whole lot except for “Along the Way” in years! My vision back then was to create a Bible study website as well as a place to learn more about theology, history, culture of ancient times, languages and even methods of study. Ultimate goal and still the mission of Abiding Ways is to do what I can to help folks gain greater Bible literacy. If you’ve read any of my past posts you know I also touch on social issues of today as it relates to biblical principles and especially those things Jesus taught. Well, this year, I hope to go beyond vision to actively pursuing this mission! While I don’t desire donations or funding etc, I am considering other “marketing” possibilities to increase readership. You may have noticed the “share” buttons at the top of the page-I hope you’ll use them. I’m thinking also about a newsletter to highlight popular posts (monthly?) as well as a dedicated Twitter and Facebook area. I’ve tried Facebook before and well, didn’t get much feedback. It could be that I didn’t pay that much attention myself. Well, my ultimate plan is to post twice a week for starters and more often as led. Of course, the Romans study, but also timely articles on social issues and sharing my views especially as it relates to my faith in Jesus. So, now that you know all that– here is my verse for 2018—

If you haven’t guessed already, my ONE WORD for this year is ENDURANCE ! 

I am the first to admit that I am not the most consistent person when it comes to blogging, but I do try to be an obedient child of God. And it came to me the other day while praying about this that my focus has really been all wrong. This mission I’m on here on the “inter-webs” hasn’t really been a priority. Call it wrong thinking or just a bit of fearfulness at the enormity of developing and maintaining a website for God and sure, like Jonah, I try to ignore it! However, during that same time of meditation I was plainly told THIS IS YOUR CALLING! Not just as wife, mother, grandma, friend, but as a disciple do what I’ve been telling you-“Go into all the world and get the message out!” and so, as the new year ends, that is what I pray to do! For an older gal like me, endurance isn’t something that comes like it did when I was 25! So, other things are having to go by the wayside. Especially some of those bad habits like cruising Facebook because I don’t want to fold laundry, or turning on the TV during the day instead of writing, preparing my next post or vacuuming the house.

Before I sign off for the year- I did a brief word study on my Word… just right-click and save.  For my verse Strong’s says the following:
5281. ὑπομονή hupŏmŏnē, hoop-om-on-ay´; from 5278; cheerful (or hopeful) endurance, constancy:— enduring, patience, patient continuance (waiting).

Now you can’t argue with that can you? And it IS the Greek word used most often in the New Testament.

And so, let’s wrap this up! I suspect you’ve now endured enough – HAPPY NEW YEAR!

The LORD bless you and keep you;
the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;
the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.

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06 Jun

Setback -> Reset!

Romans 7:15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.

Wow! I can’t believe it’s been about five months since I last posted here! Needless to say, I’m back! Revived, resuscitated, and ready to move forward.
So, what happened?
In my last post I mentioned that I was feeling the effects of what I thought was the flu. As a result it took me a long while to overcome it, but I did. Coupled with that, well, winter!
Being from the southwest and desert country, I have never been happy with dark gloomy frigid days. That makes me ache and hard to move around. While I’ve never been formally diagnosed, I am pretty sure I “catch” what is referred to as “S.A.D” or seasonal affective disorder. 
For me, I get a bit depressed, eat the wrong things, sleep badly, and well, just really don’t want to do much of anything except wish I were a bear and hibernate until warmer, sunnier days are more often than not.
With this depression thing, I kick myself in the butt for not doing more of the things I need to as well as all I’d like and planned to do at the beginning of the year.
I do a lot of “stinkin’ thinkin'” and “Poor me” partying. In other words, really negative thoughts about myself, my failures, my lack of purpose and direction. It’s a scary place to be!
Needless to say, with the sun, healing from physical maladies and simply slowly but surely re-igniting the POSITIVE passions that drive me, I eventually pull myself out of this funk and slowly put my feet back on the path I mapped out in the beginning of the year.
Right now, my home is in ok shape. Thanks in part to overnight family visit. Still a lot of decluttering to do but overall it’s not too bad. I’ve returned to more consistent time with my Lord which is the absolute best part. I’m reading and studying more and doing the research to get that “dream book” farther along. Now that summer TV season is here, much less of that! And while the current state of politics is still a passion, I’ve almost limited my obsession to much less. You see, when I’m in that Debbie Downer space, television is my refuge… instead of where it should be-in the Lord!
I have been pretty consistent with serving as a Host at Life.Church Online. I’m very focused on a couple of Bible studies in the book of Romans which IS a passion!! And have started working on a more regular routine for each day. Deciding what’s truly important has been a big help. Re-aligning God’s priorities with my own and actively pursuing them is the beginning of getting back to who I believe God wants me to be at this stage of life.
I’m hoping to get back to a more regular posting but can’t guarantee really. We have a couple more family events scheduled in the summer months. My beloved has about a month off in July. I’m scheduled for jury duty, AND my yearly physical exam also in July.
Writing in general is moving up the priority list as I’m hoping to start (and finish) a book. Working on the Abiding Ways website and really getting back to the primary purpose of sharing God’s word by studying not just the spiritual but also the practical. Then of course there’s all the reading I want to do, taking better care of me, and my home and husband, and last but not least drawing nearer to God, and being the best example I can to others of His love in Christ.
And so, now you know the adventure I’ve been on. I suspect that I’m not a lone ranger when it comes to such things. My hope is that by sharing, I may help someone else realize there is hope. I’d also like to hear from anyone who is or has experienced similar. Share in the comments if you like.
I’m going to be closing down the Abiding Ways Facebook group for now. I’m in the process of re-evaluating the motive, mission and vision for the ministry as a whole. Good things take time! I’ll post again, probably Friday or Saturday. Stay tuned and be sure to bookmark “Along the Way”!
The verse at the top of the post is how I was feeling. Faithful to God, Paul also provided the “cure”
 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death Romans 8:1-2
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05 Nov

CHANGE…be careful what you pray for!

This is my first post in way too long (3 months or so???!!!) due to “Lemony Snicket” syndrome aka a series of unfortunate events.

Soon after my last post we had a power outage ultimately due to a squirrel with an appetite for wiring, so it’s been reported. The next day I booted up my trusty desktop and well, it didn’t! If you’re familiar with POST codes, I got the one that says the motherboard is cooked. UGH.

I tried for a few days to get it back up-even praying over it a few times but it appears to have gone to be with Jesus :)! So, just about then we got a Dell sales flyer and from there I ordered and 2 weeks later was up and running.

If you’ve ever gotten a new computer you know the agony and ecstasy of having a super-fast machine and the tiresome and grueling task of re-loading all your favorite programs, deleting all the “freeware” that you know you’ll never use, as well as configurations for logins, network, email, etc. THAT took about a week or so and truthfully, I still am not satisfied with everything and have yet to connect my old hard-drive to transfer files. Thankfully, most documents were on an external drive so I didn’t lose too much.

OK so, that takes us into September… and a pesty-type home invasion on multiple fronts. This required some major moving of STUFF so that the issues could be dealt with. An ordeal of massive proportions for us – as we have a LOT of STUFF!

The problem has been thankfully, hopefully resolved as of yesterday! A lot of that STUFF still hasn’t found a place but I’m working on it and it is exhausting. You see, for weeks/months/years I’ve been praying for the motivation to change and adopt a minimalist lifestyle… getting rid of a lot of that STUFF! Well, here I am and still doing it a room/corner/space at a time. Talk about motivation! So, due to all these difficult times I AM more motivated to get this done once and for all. God is good ALL the time, even when it seems like He’s not around to help : )!

Now, a brief thought on this United States presidential election…
So often when I ask why someone is voting for the lesser experienced and definitely unqualified candidate, I hear “we need a change”. I’ll be the first to admit that both candidates have issues but really… one had an email server that has been the most investigated system in U.S. history and the candidate has been scrutinized more than any other I’ve ever seen (for about the last 30 years!). The other candidate isn’t even honest enough to do something that every modern day candidate HAS done-release tax returns. Needless to say, he’s also used (abused) the system for personal gain, bribed others to get investigations and lawsuits dismissed, and I’m sorry, but this candidate makes any “lies” the other might have done look very insignificant. And right now, he’s been civilly accused of rape, fraud and even running a “modeling agency”. So I must ask—what change do you want people?

Sadly, little about proposed POLICIES has been discussed in this election fraught with insults, bigotry, and really torn the concept of democracy to shreds as even the FBI has been suspected of “rigging” the election.

Yes, I get it, people are hurting economically. But many also say they have hope. In the meantime I hear some ridiculous silence when it comes to how one of the candidates will help. No solutions, just I got the greatest plans, I am [the best, the greatest, only hope]. So, I invite you to review the issues and their proposals, if you haven’t already, then VOTE knowing you’re an informed person and not just wanting a change-any change.  As the title of this post says “be careful what you pray for!”

I hope you will do your own research, and not just oh, that sounds good… ask the how, when, and is that realistic… ok

To read about Hillary Clinton’s proposals click here
For Trump … here

I will hopefully return on Monday with that “special” thing I promised ages ago… stay tuned.

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