Friday, May 29, 2009

CIRCLE OF LOVE ... meet Laurie Ann

I have been so excited about this week's CIRCLE OF LOVE feature! I get excited each week, as I introduce to you a new blogging friend, but this week is alittle bit different. Not only can I tell you about a sweet sister in the Lord that I have met on the web but this particular friend I just met in real life! Now, not too many of us can say that about our bloggy friends.


author of:

Last Friday, my real-life (and blogging friend ) Jennifer and I took a rode trip to Grenada, MS. It was a 2 hour drive from our hometown in Arkansas, but we had a mission and that was to meet our sister in the Lord, Laurie Ann. Laurie Ann also had a 2 hour drive to meet us, so at our half-way stopping point, the 3 of us met for lunch at McAllisters. It was a beautiful day outside, so we sat outside and for the next 3.5 hours we talked, we laughed, we shared, we drank tea and we even prayed. It was like 3 old friends getting together and reminiscing about the "old" days.

Laurie Ann with
Jennifer (Ordinary Christian Woman's Heart) and myself at McAllisters

Laurie Ann sipping tea with Jennifer

I was trying to think of how Laurie Ann and I started to connect with one another thru blogging. I narrowed it down to about a year ago or so, when I started reading some of her writings thru Thankful Thursday and the At The Well sites. I remember it was shortly after I first started blogging and I was very (very!) green around the gills about blogging. I had tried and tried to figure out how to insert my signature like I saw in so many other blogs. But I just could not figure it out! So I commented on Laurie Ann's blog one day about it and she sent me her email address. She walked me thru it step by step and we have been connecting not only thru our daily blog posts but even in personal email ever since!

Meeting Laurie Ann in person was one of the greatest things about my blogging experience. So many times when I sit down at my computer and begin to write, I am reminded of the ministry that God has placed at the tip of my fingers. His leading and guiding speaks thru my heart and ministers at times to many readers that I will never have the chance to come face to face with. But on this particular day, on a sunny Friday, in a little town in Mississippi, sitting at a McAllister's deli...God gave me an opportunity to see face to face the ministry that is present in this thing we call "blogging".

Laurie Ann was as sweet, and tenderhearted and God loving as she portrays in her writings. What a precious and beautiful lady. I was so touched to meet her and now I feel such a bond between the three of us (Laurie Ann, Jennifer and myself).

Laurie Ann is one of those writers that shares the love of Christ in every single post that she writes. She is an amazing teacher. She loves to take a word and tell us what it means. I like that! I like to dissect the meaning of words. She also likes to break down scripture and give us simplified application. I love that also...after all, what good is it if we can't figure out how to apply it to our lives? If you visit Laurie Ann's blog on a regular basis, you will also notice that she likes acrostics. This woman can make an acrostic out of any word!

Not only is Laurie Ann an amazing teacher, but she cares about her readers and her hearts passion (besides her husband, her bonus daughter and her two grandsons) is for ALL to receive Jesus Christ and His love and forgiveness. She genuinely cares about the salvation of those she may have never met face to face.

Laurie Ann is an encourager. I don't know how she does it, but daily I see her posting comments on several blogs and every word is always an encouragement. If you have not met Laurie Ann, I encourage you to visit her and see if you don't see the same godly attributes as I see in her. Recently, Laurie Ann shared about "courage" with us on her blog....

As men and women of Christ, we are given this command to be of courage. The Greek word for courage is andrizomai.

This verb means:1) to make a man of or make brave 2) to show one's self a man, be brave. Bravery is not for the fainthearted.

We must be of courage to tie all these things together. With the way the world is going, indeed it is a necessity. By our courage, we can show others our faith and perseverance, our standing firm and being on guard. Timidity has no place in the Christian faith. (Reverential awe does, but this is not about that right now.)

How many stories have you read in the Bible about courage and bravery? Countless, no doubt. One of the bravest men I know is Paul. In chains he still preached the Word. I doubt if he turned on the television today that he would shake in his boots over rumors of swine flu (he was bitten by a snake and lived) or be kept up at night because there is talk of going to a one world currency. No! He would remain content, no doubt, and while praying for the moral depravity in the world, keep preaching the Word. We should be as brave.

Just as the Lord promised Joshua, we, too, can be men and women of courage, being on guard and standing firm on faith, because we know God is with us.

"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go." ~ Joshua 1:9 (NIV)

~ Y ~

I told you she was an amazing teacher and encourager! Recently, Laurie Ann shared from her heart with me online and this is what she had to say:


Laurie Ann Pierce - you can find me blogging at, on facebook, and through email at You can find me on Twitter as msbookhound but between facebook, blogging and emailing, I forget to Twitter. I'm also in a yahoo group called Wow-Gals and Daughters of Sarah.


I actually created my blog in 2004. Back then it was Magnolia Musings. I blogged about family and problems I was having. It was more of a diary then. I stopped blogging for a while and picked it back up seriously in 2008. My favorite thing about blogging is reaching women for Christ with topics that are relevant for spiritual growth.


I love to expand on Bible verses or a topic. I love stretching and growing in God and hope to pass that on to others.

4. TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF...if you work ~where? ...have a family ~ tell us about them?

I work outside the home. I will begin my 20th year of work in October. I work for a state agency and manage travel policies, procedures, and contracts for the State, as well as approve requests for international travel and requests for waivers when employees deviate from normal policies. I enjoy my work.

As for my family, I have the best! I have been married to my husband Steve for 18 years. Although I do not have any living biological children (we lost Sydney Michel to miscarriage 7/20/98), I am a bonus Mom to Kristyn, who was 6 years old when we married. Steve already had custody of her before we even met, so when we married, I had an instant family. I have considered it a privilege to raise her alongside Steve and Tabitha, her Mother.


I never remember a time of not knowing Jesus. I was an older teen before I totally committed my life to Him and an even older adult before I realized what true Christianity was all about. You can read my testimony later here:


I went through eight long years of infertility and miscarriage. A little over after our loss, I had a hysterectomy at age 29, ending my chance at becoming a biological parent. The faithfulness of the Lord shined through. He had called me to pray for those eight years and the reward was a rich heritage of children. I have not only my bonus daughter Kristyn, but my son-in-love Corey and 2 precious grandsons, Nolan and Liam, ages 19 months and 7 months. I am an aunt many times over and a cousin to many young children. God has rewarded my time of prayer in moving me closer to Him and opening my eyes to being content with what He has given me.


"For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."
~ Luke 12:34 (NIV) - this is my life verse. My heart beats to serve my Treasure.


It has really tied together many things in my life. It kept me grounded when my Dad was going through a crisis recently and helped me unpack alot of baggage from the past and leave it in Room 12 of the ER. I realized that my treasure was actually an alabtross of emotional and verbal abuse I had carried around from years of growing up with an alcoholic father. I didn't realize I was so unforgiving until I thought about how easily the health crisis Daddy was going through could have turned out for the worse. And it was a minor injury compared to some of the things he has been through before. I think it was all about God's timing. He allowed me to slow down that day and ask myself where my treasure really was.


Pray about every post. If it lines up with what He wants you to write, by all means, write about it. Follow your heart and have fun with your blog. If you're a Mom and have great tips, blog about that. If you are a photobug, post those pictures. If you want to write to encourage others, by all means, do so. If your blog is geared more toward humor, keep us laughing! Follow God's plan for your blog.

If it becomes work, step back and ask yourself if it's what God intends. Take breaks when you feel you should and blog like there's no tomorrow when you are called to do that.

"Thank you Laurie Ann for always giving us your best as you blog! I look forward to many more lunches in the future! You are a an awesome encouragement to me and to WOMEN TAKING A STAND!" -LAURIE

Please visit LAURIE ANN over at MAGNOLIAHEARTBEATS today. You will be blessed! Find her page by clicking HERE!

WOULD YOU LIKE your blog featured here on a future CIRCLE OF LOVE segment? CLICK HERE to find out how you and your blog can be highlighted!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

THANKFUL THURSDAY...what big things can God do?

Lynn of Spiritually Unequal Marriage is hosting THANKFUL THURSDAY this week. Lynn has challenged all of us to consider obedience and hearing the voice of God. To be able to hear the voice of God, we must first know the voice of God. It is when we are able to recognize the voice of God that we can be obedient.

"God will help us become the people we are meant to be, if only we will ask Him." - HANNAH WHITALL SMITH
Wow. What a great quote. Think about the latter part of that quote ..."if ONLY we will ask Him." Most of the time we have not because we ask not.

JAMES 4:2 "You do not have, because you do not ask God."

It is easy for us to pray for the little things in our life and be obedient...
"Lord, help me today to be on time for work."
and we leave the house 10 minutes early and arrive on time!

"Lord, give me a hunger for your Word today."
and during lunch your co-worker asks you to help her with a Bible Study lesson.

It is so easy to be obedient when it comes easy. But what about the big things in life? How easy is it to be obedient? and the big question ... how easy is it to believe God for the big things?

When we pray fervently and earnestly - great things usually happen. Unfortunately, often times we are too doubtful or too timid to even ask God to do big things. But God can and will answer your call for even the big things in your life. But it may take some obedience on your part. The type of obedience that may not be easy or comfortable.

"Dear Lord, I will do anything if you would bless us with a new car."
and God does bless you with a new car and then He asks you to give it away to someone less fortunate than you.


"Dear Lord, its been hard times financially...please provide us with a good raise this year."
and God answers your prayer and then asks you to give your entire raise for the year in the offering for the missionary.


Obedience and hearing God's voice. We honor God by asking big requests, but we can't expect God to do all of the work. When we do our part (obey) ~ He will do His part. And when this happens - expect a miracle ... a BIG miracle to happen!

I am thankful for the miracles that await me. Dear Lord, help me to be obedient and patiently listen for Your voice!

What are you thankful for this Thursday? Come visit all of the grateful hearts over HERE!

PLEASE COME BACK NEXT WEEK... I will be hosting TT for the month of June!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

WEDNESDAY WEEKLY WORD ...what's in a name?

Some time ago I heard the following story...
"There was a little boy in his room at night when a storm brewed up. The boy called out to his mother and she came in right away and consoled the boy. Before leaving his room, the mother reminder her son that God was there with him all of the time, so there was no need to worry. He responded, "I know mommy...but I want someone with skin on them!"

Have you ever desired to see someone with "skin on?" From time to time, we have encounters with people that we actually do not see face to face, possibly we communicate with them via the computer or over the telephone. It could be a business associate, a blogging friend or a long removed relative.

Several years ago, I worked for a very big paper company as a customer service rep. For several years, I worked alongside a sales rep. Every day we communicated on the telephone for over 2 years. I was his right hand gal, the one that all of his customers depended upon when it came to servicing their customer needs. Even though we worked together as a team, I had never actually met this co-worker of mine face to face. In my mind, I had mentally conjured up a picture of what I thought my district sales rep looked like and then one day, he came to the home office where I worked. Believe it or not ... he looked NOTHING like I had imagined.

As a Christian ~ have you ever wondered what God must look like?

In the book of Job, Job hungered for being able to see God. Job said, "If only I knew how to find Him, so that I could go to His throne." (Job 23:3) However, Job became frustrated in his search..."If I go east, He is not there, and if I go west, I cannot perceive Him. When He is at work to the north, I cannot see Him; when He turns south, I cannot find Him." (Job 23:8,9)

For those who were alive at the time Jesus was born, they experienced what Job desperately hungered for - they saw Him in visible form - they saw Christ with "skin on Him."

One of the greatest miracles we can experience is the birth of a child. Even before my children were born, while they were still in my womb, I loved them. But when I held them in my arms that very first time, and looked into their lovely face and touched their soft skin, and called them by was then that the miracle of life came alive to me. The name of my baby really meant something to me at that moment, as there was now "skin" to their name.

The ultimate great miracle of a child being born would undoubtedly be the birth of Christ. Isaiah set the stage for the name that was to come. As he heard from God, Isaiah declared that "a virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel." (Isaiah 7:14)

So what does a name mean anyway?

In last week's YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL, I asked the following question, "When you were a child, how did you feel about your name?" The following were the top 3 answers...

1. 22% of those polled said that they didn't go by their real name, but a nickname instead.
2. Another 22% of those voting said that they liked their name - it seemed to fit them.
3. 11% voted and said that they had a common name and it made them feel common.

What does your name say about you? Is there a special meaning behind your name...are you named after someone or were you given your name because of some special memory or thought?

Isaiah reported that the Son born of a virgin would be called Immanuel which would mean "God is with us." In the human eye, it is difficult to believe someone can be with us when we cannot physically see them.

When I worked with that sales rep, even though I did not come face to face with him for a long period of time, I knew he was real because I talked with him day in and day out. To know the name of Christ, to fully understand that Immanuel is God with us ... we must spend time with Him day in and day out.

When we put our trust and faith in the unseen, we will become like that boy in the story and we will believe that God is truly with us ALL of the time.

Wednesday Weekly Word is a weekly post devoted to my thoughts and insights on a personal study I am doing. Right now I am looking at the truths and prophecies of Christ. I pray that you will put your trust in the promise that God gave us ...that "God is with us!"

YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL...please take time to vote in this weeks poll. It is located on the side bar of the blog. Your opinion really does matter and you will find the results of the poll in next weeks post on WEDNESDAY WEEKLY WORD!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A PIECE OF MY HEART...who is your pilot?

Memorial Day.
A great day to remember things. Such things as: fallen soldiers, the men and women who have served us well in wartime and the sons and daughters that are currently serving our country.

Memorial Day is also a day to remember the One Who has been with each man, each woman, each mother, each father, and each child during times of fighting, times of peace and times of uncertainty.

On this day after Memorial Day, I am remembering exactly Who my God is!

Yesterday, it seemed like everything I picked up or turned on ~ flashed the news of North Korea launching their 2ND test missile. This morning the report is that they plan to launch several more. Not too many days ago, we read in the newspaper about the former President of South Korea committing suicide.

Is the threat of the enemy overshadowing our remembrance of Who God is?

I had the opportunity to IM my son Jeremy yesterday. What a great Memorial Day for me ... to chatter with my soldier. As many of you know, Jeremy has been serving our country over in South Korea for the past 9 months. When I asked him about this news flash, this is what he had to say to his mother....

"I am not worried about it and you shouldn't be either."
Spoken so eloquently, don't you think? But what he had to say is so true. I believe that God would say the same thing to you and me in the midst of our trial and fury. When the enemy is coming against us with full power and we don't know which way to turn. "Do I turn to the right or the left"? God would say to you...

"I am not worried about it and you shouldn't be either."
ISAIAH 41:10 "I am with you ...I will help...I will take good care of you."

It doesn't matter if you are in Korea, Arkansas, Utah, Mississippi or the ends of the earth ... God knows exactly what you are up against and He is your pilot. He will steer you in the right direction.

An airplane pilot who comes upon a storm and loses perspective has the option of flying thru the course alone or he can switch on auto pilot and receive help. God already knows how to steer you thru that storm... so why not switch on the auto pilot and let Him take over.

and that is a piece of my heart today!

Sunday, May 24, 2009


My heartfelt thanks to all who have served our country, to those who have given their life for my freedom and a sincere appreciation for those who currently serve our country and who are defending our flag! May God indeed ... bless the USA!

Friday, May 22, 2009


Melodye is a new friend of mine. I only recently stumbled across her blog. What I like about Melodye is the boldness that she has to speak political truth on her site. This is a really unique blog to experience. She isn't just trying to throw around her ideals of what she thinks our politicians should or should not be doing, but she takes "real life" decisions and news stories and brings to life the character and/or lack of godly character that exists in our political leaders. She steers us to think about the things that are going on in our world that do not match up to God's Holy Word.

Recently, Melodye was voted the MOST AWESOMEST POLITICAL BLOG for 2009!


On a recent visit to A VOICE FOR MOMS blog, I found Melodye sharing a great word about compromise...and since Melodye writes a political blog...who do you suppose she was writing about that was making a compromise? Well read on and see what Melodye had to say about THE GREAT COMPROMISE....

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Great Compromise & 88/365

As we mature we begin to understand that life involves compromises. The very nature of life means that there is a give and take it helps keep us from always being at odds with one another. However, it appears that compromising has become so ingrained that our society no longer understands that while compromising is important that somethings in life are truly black and white. One should not compromise their principles yet we are often fed a line that we swallow that says, "we must go along to get along". This is what I see the University of Notre Dame doing with their invitation to Obama to speak at their commencement ceremony and the fact they will award him an honorary doctorate of law.

Should the head of a Christian university have extended the offer to a
man who is unapologetically in favor of and has lobbied tirelessly for the
slaughter of smallest and most fragile of our society? No, in my opinion the
invitation should not have been extended. Yet, the explanation given by Father
Jenkins, the President of Notre Dame is that it is tradition to invite new US
Presidents to give the commencement address. Tradition does not excuse one from
standing for the things that are right and true, nor does it allow one to throw
Christian principles under the bus.

When leaders of the faith are willing to compromise for tradition then
we need to take a hard look at who we are consider a leader. I applaud all of
those who are respectfully dissenting this farce and that is what it is. There
are some Notre Dame benefactors who will no longer contribute, there are those
in the Catholic church hierarchy that have condemned this, there are graduates
who will have a prayer vigil as opposed to attending the graduation ceremonies,
there are graduates who will attend but have special symbols on their mortar
caps in protest and then there are those like Dr. Alan Keyes and many others who
are demonstrating and who have been arrested.

While I am for the 1st Amendment even when I disagree with someone I do
not believe it speaks well of the leadership of Notre Dame to allow Obama a
platform with a captive audience just because of tradition. This is one of those
times when the minority of our society are having their views espoused over the
majority. Despite what we are led to believe in the media the majority of
Americans are pro-life. While I know this will not happen, it would be nice to

I told you that Melodye was amazing at blogging about the political truths! Recently, I had the opportunity to visit with Melodye online and this is what she shared with me...

Melodye Aben (Mel)

I have been blogging since Nov. 11, 2008, for me blogging is a wonderful outlet to think out loud, to make a difference hopefully but also I love the idea of being part of a group of amazing wonderful writers and people.

I blog about politics and how it effects us but also what we can do.

4. TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF...if you work ~where? ...have a family ~ tell us about them?
I am a working mom, I have 4 children, 3 sons, ages 20, 8, and 6 and 1 daughter age 17

I became a Christian at 16 but spent many years luke warm only in the last couple of years have been following what God would have me to do and to be.

God daily shows Himself faithful to me in how He enables me to balance and juggle all the different hats I wear. This last several months has brought so much change to my life but through it all I have had that peace God promises us and His strength to keep going.

1 But now, this is what the LORD says— he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: "Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. ~
Isaiah 43: 1-2

This Promise is one I stand on through the storms of life, the excitement of life and recently as I have stepped out in faith and gone where God is asking it has been something I lean on, it has always always proven true.

I say blog about what you are passionate about and be your own blogger, don’t try to be anyone other than who you are. Folks can see your heart with what you write.
That is some great advice Melodye, and you certainly blog about what you are passionate about. I am so thankful for your boldness and for the stand that you are taking for Jesus Christ in a very politically challenged world. I appreciate the ministry and the encouragement that you are penning on your site. It is an encouragement to so many and definitely an encouragement to WOMEN TAKING A STAND! - Laurie

Thursday, May 21, 2009

THANKFUL THURSDAY ...The garden of life

My husband has been busy working in his vegetable garden. Each year I seem to lose alittle bit more of my backyard to this hobby of his ... gardening! I don't really mind though, spending time in his garden is relaxing to him and the vegetables that we reap from his hard work is very satisfying.

If you have ever planted a garden, then you know what the basic steps are: plant the seeds, water them, allow sun to shine on them. With these three basic steps, over a period of time, those seeds will begin to sprout and grow into a plant. Is that all there is to it?

Well not exactly...the natural process of harvesting will take place but not without the helping hand of the gardener. If my husband did not spend time out in his garden, tending to the plants and to the weeds, who knows what we would end up with.

Lynn of Spiritually Unequal Marriage is hosting THANKFUL THURSDAY this week and she has chosen the topic of Nature. As I was thinking about my husband out there in his vegetable garden, carefully taking care of it and hoping that "nature" will take its course and provide us with a plentiful array of vegetables this year ~ I couldn't help but to think of Gods creation of nature.

Look all around you. Go ahead ... look out your window right now. What do you see...trees? the sun? the clouds? a butterfly? the chirping birds? a mountain? a running river? Isn't Gods garden of nature breathtaking?

Like a farmer tending to his crops, God tends to each of us with the same tender, loving care. His helping hand is outstretched to each of us. He has provided us with so much to enjoy. He not only provided us with a beautiful array of creation but God tenderly takes care of those things He has so wonderfully made. If God tenderly takes care of the birds, how much more will He provide for you and me?

MATTHEW 6:26 "Look at the birds. They don't plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them."

I am so thankful for the garden of life that God has provided for me. How about you...what are you thankful for today? Stop by Lynn's place today to share your grateful heart with us.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

WEDNESDAY WEEKLY WORD... our Good Shepherd

In today's society, we often hear of important people, such as talented athletes and we automatically think of the grand place they must of come from. You know ... the greatest athletes, the most talented actors, the incredibly beautiful models ... they must have ALL come from exciting places such as New York City, or Los Angeles or Chicago.

One of my favorite kind of stories to read about is the "small town" producing someone great and famous. Consider the great honor and pride that such a small town must have for their moment of fame in the sun.

We are experiencing that right here in my state of good ole Arkansas, as we await the outcome of the "American Idol" contest. Recently, I was in the city of Conway, Arkansas for my daughter in law's graduation and the hoopla was all over that small town city. Why? Because of the college graduation ceremonies? NO ... because just the evening before graduation, Chris was in town and performed for the college campus!

Small town pride!

Some of the most influential people came out of less-than big places: President Dwight Eisenhower was born in Denison, Texas; President Jimmy Carter was born and raised in Plains, Georgia; and the late Johnny Carson was born in Corning, Iowa.

The greatest influential man, who ever walked the earth, also got His start in small, out-of-the-way towns. Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem, which can be described as "small among the clans of Judah" (Micah 5:2) Jesus went onto yet another small town, where He was raised...the town of Nazareth.

Small town upbringing is very significant because many times those who live in large cities can find themselves getting lost in the vast numbers. Jesus never let that happen.

Jesus paid attention to the least significant beggar beside the road, He healed people who felt lost in the crowd, and He made everyone feel like they were His only concern. Jesus was like the man in the parable of the Lost Sheep who would leave the 99 sheep to find the one that was lost.

MATTHEW 18:12-14 "What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them goes astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine and go to the mountains to seek the one that is straying? (13) And if he should find it, assuredly, I say to you, he rejoices more over that sheep than over the ninety-nine that did not go astray. (14) Even so it is not the will of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish."

I find the metaphor of seeing Jesus as the Good Shepherd very interesting. First of all, to be born in Bethlehem - a town that was very familiar with shepherds. Micah prophesied not only the Bethlehem birth, but also Christ's shepherding role and what this would mean to the whole world.

MICAH 5:4 "He will stand and shepherd (them) in the strength of Yahweh, in the majestic name of Yahweh His God. They will live securely, for then His greatness will extend to the ends of the earth."

The definition of a shepherd is this:
One who herds, guards, and tends sheep. One who cares for and guides a group of people, as a minister or teacher.

The security that Micah speaks of is the sense of security that our Good Shepherd provides for us. Christ, as our Shepherd keeps His flock together, He protects His sheep from predators, and He will guide us to greener pastures.

Last week, in the YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL, I polled the readers the following question: "Which function of a good shepherd do you most need in your life right now?" The top 3 responses were...

1. 38% of those voting said that they needed the "Guiding the Sheep" as they are looking for vision.
2. 23% of those polled said that they need the "keeping the flock together" as it seemed their family was being pulled apart.
3. 15% voted and said that they needed the "keeping the flock close" as they felt isolated and disconnected from others.

This week's poll reveals to me that sometimes we, as Christians, do not live in the security that our Good Shepherd is offering us. Micah tells us that people will live securely BECAUSE OF the Messiah. It is so easy for us to say with words that we agree with Micah...but what do your actions say?


This is my weekly post designated to the current personal study of mine. Right now I am doing a study on the promises and prophecies of Christ. He is truly the Good Shepherd and I am thankful that He has prepared a secure future for me.

YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL...Please vote in this weeks poll "When you were a child, how did you feel about your name?" Find this weeks poll on the sidebar of the blog.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A PIECE OF MY HEART ... designed with purpose

I was already a few minutes late, the movie previews had already started, but if I didn't use the restroom now I would certainly have to get up in the middle of the movie and miss out on something really important! After washing my hands quickly, I looked around for the towel dispenser ....noticing it above my head, I hurriedly reached above my head for a towel. RATS! Water begins dripping down my wrists from my wet hands and now drips down into the sleeves of my shirt. "Who on earth designs these things?" - I mutter under my breath ... do I look like a LA Laker or a woman on stilts? "Why can't they just put things where they belong?"

Have you ever wondered about stuff like that? Why would someone put a towel dispenser UP instead of DOWN? Why would someone build a kitchen with only a few cabinets? Why would someone install windows in a home that do not open or shut? Why on earth would someone build a storage room OUTSIDE of the house for their washer and dryer? (yep ... you can see that in the good 'ole south!)

When I think about the crazy designs made by man, I have to just laugh and say thank you to God that He put more thought into His plans than people seem to do!

"God...You didn't make this world on a whim, did You? "

Absolutely NOT!

PSALM 33:11 "The plans of the Lord stand firm forever, the purposes of His heart through all generations."

ISAIAH 46:10 "I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please."

God's plans for our life will unfold at a perfect place, with an understanding of our past, present and future. The blueprints of our life are drawn with the Heart of God!


and that is a piece of my heart today!

Monday, May 18, 2009


Have you ever felt so tired and so exhausted that you simply thought you could sleep for a day or two? Recently, I felt just about this tired. I was so exhausted that when I finally fell into the bed one evening, I relished the thought of sleeping until past lunchtime the next day.

But of course...that didn't happen at all! For one thing ...I am a mother and mothers do not GET TO sleep in and secondly ... I had way too many things to accomplish and even though my body was saying "sleep...sleep" - my mind was saying "get up...get up"!

Even when we are tired and exhausted, somehow we muster up enough energy to accomplish the things that we need to accomplish.

The dictionary defines energy as "the vigorous exertion of power." This type of energy has to do with effort, strength, potency, and might. Who has ALL of these attributes?

God does!

ISAIAH 40:29 "God gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength."

So next time you feel just simply worn out, depleted, low on energy and exhausted...don't look to your energy bar or energy drink to bring you strength. The trainer at the local gym cannot bring you this vigorous exertion of power either. The strength I am talking about comes directly from the Lord.

Have you asked for His strength today?

Friday, May 15, 2009

CIRCLE OF LOVE ... meet Debra


Debra of Clothed with Scarlet is a real blessing to so many of us in the blogging world. She really has a passion for sharing God's Word with others. One of the favorite things that I enjoy about visiting her blog is when she participates in WORD FOR WEDNESDAY, a popular meme on Wednesday's. Debra always has an awesome scripture to share with us.

Here is a recent Word for Wednesday post that Debra shared on her blog...

Word for Wednesday
Psalm 61:2 "From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee,
when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I."
Blessings to you today ... may you know that Jesus is your Rock! Big hugs to you.

In addition to sharing God's Word with her readers, Debra also enjoys sharing her love for her family. You will be able to recognize her hubby...he is the one with the cowboy hat and you can't help but notice the love and adoration she has for her family when you see all of her great photo's that she posts of them.

If you have not met Debra yet, I hope that you will stop on over at her place and greet her. You will be welcomed by her beautiful smile and her huge heart.


Recently, Debra shared a little bit more about herself and her passion with me via the Internet. Here is what she had to say:

My name is Debra Kaye Mercuri and my blog address is

I began blogging in 2008...the latter part of the year...close to September, I believe. My favorite thing about blogging is the daily journaling of my family life and getting to share it with a group of the MOST amazing women that God has brought into my life. I am truly amazed by His orchestration through this media that I was once so afraid of.

The main things I blog about are my family. I do participate in memes. Most people know that I participate in Blue Monday and usually throw up a picture of my family playing in the beautiful blue water or I throw up a picture of my son's beautiful blue eyes! lol I also post a scripture verse on Wednesday that speaks for itself, nothing more...nothing less. Just the Word...I think that is so important. Thankful Thursdays are one of my favorite days where I join with a group of amazingly thankful women and we lift our hearts and give praise to our most excellent Jesus for the great things He has done and those things we are knowing He is going to do!! Fridays are back and forth between My Husband Rocks (you know he does) ... and Friday Funnies with my sweet pal Kimmy whom I adore. Followed by Then Sings My Soul Saturdays with Amy and the girls where we post a worship song lifting the spirits of those who may need it through song. Sundays I usually just post a blessing and take the day off to be at rest with my King.

4. TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF...if you work ~where? ...have a family ~ tell us about them?
I came home from the outside work environment 7 years ago. I have two children and a beloved husband. Jason is the main guy of the house who keeps us laughing and Joshua is our only son who is still at home. He will turn 17 soon (OUCH) and he is set to graduate with honors next year. He is home schooled through a Christian Academy but plays high school football (which all of you have to endure during football season when I post Friday Night Lights). He wishes to join the Air Force upon graduation. I also have a daughter who is very far from the Lord right now and many of you have taken the mantle a time or two in helping me in my weariness to pray for her. I don't have the proper verbage to tell you what that means to me. Her name is Krystle and I'm waiting for her to come home to Jesus.

While I gave my life to the Lord at a young age, I have been serving him wholeheartedly for the last 20 years of my life.

I can give you many testimonies of how God has proven Himself faithful!! How do I pick just one? I will tell you that my son was almost taken from us at the age of 14 by some very careless kids who were playing with guns. One of the boys walked up to my son and pointed a very loaded gun at his chest and pulled the trigger twice. By the grace of God, my son was spared. These boys were in deep trouble and after a few weeks the Lord spoke to my son's heart and he reluctantly but obediently came forward and told the truth of the situation.. He lost friends but the other boys' lives were spared.

My absolute favorite is Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not on your own understanding; Acknowledge Him in all your ways and He will direct your path"

I tend to want to forge ahead with projects with great intentions...leaning on my understanding. I am reminded to Trust in the Lord...not lean on my understanding and let Him direct my path.

I don't feel like I'm a great one to give counsel about blogging. I was hurt when I began blogging by some people who were not who I thought they were. I would honest. Be sincere. Let the Lord guide you. And if you can't think of something to say that would edify...don't say anything at all! Blessings to you, Laurie for this opportunity!

"Thank you Debra for sharing your heart and your passion with us. I love the sincerity and the honesty that I see on your blog day in and day out. You are a great blessing to me and to Women Taking a Stand!" -LAURIE


Thursday, May 14, 2009


Thank you LYNN for hosting Thankful Thursday this week.
Isn't it funny that when we are younger (in age) we think we have accumulated all of the wisdom that we need for a lifetime. In fact in our teen years, often times we think we "know it all". We can't wait to graduate from high school and get out on our own and do things our own way. Where NOBODY can tell us what to do.

And then when we grow alittle bit older and realize that we are not such a smart young buck that we thought we were - in fact, we wish we could go back in time and do a few things over.

Wisdom ... when and how do we obtain this in our life?

Wisdom is not something that you can accumulate overnight. It is much like a savings account that accrues slowly over a period of time. A person who consistently adds to his/her account will eventually accumulate a great sum.

ISAIAH 50:4,5 "He awakens Me morning by morning, He awakens my ear to hear as the learned. The Lord God has opened My ear."

One of the greatest source of wisdom is the Word of God. Daily - we need to study the Word of God and live according to His commandments. Now this is making a HUGE deposit into our account of wisdom.

"A big difference exists between a head full of knowledge and the words of God
literally abiding in us."

I am thankful for the wisdom of God, that He is instructing me not only thru His Word but also thru my trials and tribulations. It is my prayer that I will seek His leading and instruction each step I take thru this journey that I call LIFE!

What are you thankful for today? Find more grateful hearts HERE!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

WEDNESDAY WEEKLY WORD ...more than just a hero

Have you ever wondered what it would be like if we had superheroes in our world? How incredible would it be if every time criminals forced their havoc on our city that spider man would wrap his web around the bad guys and tie them up? Or every time our country experienced a terrible devastation like a hurricane or an earthquake - superman flew in and caught falling buildings just in time before they crushed many people.

I often think that when things get tough, people feel like they need a hero to show up and make things better. Often times we look to certain politicians to make our economy better but the only thing we get is some sort of a revealed scandal. Talking about superheroes reminds me of that song several years ago that Tina Turner sang ... "We don't need another hero". So much truth was revealed in this hit song, later on in the tune Tina sings about what we need is someone to show us "the way home".

Jesus Christ does exactly that!

Lets look at why your basic superhero would just not be enough to save this corrupt world...

1. Heroes fight one side against the other. One nation's hero is another nation's enemy. Wouldn't Hitler be an example of this? He was looked upon as a hero to some for his plans to deliver Germany from the economic and spiritual downfall, but at the same time many paid the price for his heroism.

2. Heroes often fight using temporal weapon of force. This is great in a movie but what about real life? After all, what good is superman without his krypton?

3. Heroes often have weaknesses that make them less than exemplary. How many times have you seen the good have reverse personality turns and begin to use their power for evil? This just doesn't happen in the batman sequels or the comic books.

The way I see it, the only true hero, the only One who can offer the perfect package for saving people from the evil one is Jesus Christ. Teaming up with Jesus Christ is not just another bandwagon going down a dead end road ... His Truth and love will lead us in the right direction.

In last weeks YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL, I polled the readers the following question: "How would you describe your own place in your family tree?" The top 3 results were...

1. 22% of those voting said that they are a strong branch that children can climb on.
2. Another 22% voted and said that they are the trunk that connects it all together.
3. 22% of those polled said "what family tree?"

Wow. This poll is very interesting to me ... we are either very strong, or we view our strengths as to what holds our family together or we have absolutely no branches to speak of. You may be wondering what in the world does a family tree have to do with superheroes? Stay with me here for a moment.

PROVERBS 29:18 " Where there is no vision, the people will perish." I read in my Holman Christian Standard Bible where it said "Without Revelation people run wild." We need to see the vision of something better than what we currently see as "reality". In other words, in today's society, we need hope. Without hope we will perish.

Having a superhero in your life may be closer than you think. Your "reality" right now may be distress, uncertainty and confusion. Many times when we are experiencing these type of things - we pass down our negativity and injustices to those around us. Possibly to those in our family.

Jesus Christ can give us all of the strength we need to overcome such things and before you know it, we will see shoots growing out from our family tree and branches bearing fruit will be evident.

ISAIAH 11:1 "Then a shoot will grow from the stump of Jesse, and a branch from his roots will bear fruit."

Now that our hope has been renewed ... look at the strength of His power....

ISAIAH 11:2,3a "The Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him - a Spirit of wisdom and understanding, a Spirit of counsel and strength, a Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord."

Are you looking for supernatural strength? ~ it lies within your stump, the one that is rooted in Christ. He is the only power that can defeat your enemies. Not superman. Not spider man. Not our politicians. Christ is more than just a hero...

He is :
the King of Kings
the Lord of all
the everlasting God
the Alpha and the Omega
the beginning and the end

He is:
My Abba Father
He is my all in all
He is my Redeemer
My Great Physician
My Provider
He is all I need
He is faithful and true
and the Lover of my soul

He is all of these and more. ...
And He is definitely my hero!
Thank you for joining me this week for Wednesday Weekly Word, this is my weekly post designated to my thoughts and ponderings on a personal study I am currently doing. Right now I am studying the promises and the hope of the return of Christ. It is my prayer that you place your hope and trust in Jesus Christ in these last days that we live in. He is certainly the One, the only One who can make good on His promises!

YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL...please vote in this weeks poll. Your opinion really does matter!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A PIECE OF MY HEART ... are you teachable?

The month of May is always filled with anticipation and excitement as our young people graduate from school. I always love to attend graduation ceremonies ... the thrill of what is to come is always fresh in the air.

This year is no different
for the Adams family.

We have two exciting graduations ... one from high school and the other from college. Our daughter in law Rachel, this past weekend, graduated from nursing school with her degree in nursing. After she completes her boards this summer, she will be a Registered Nurse. We are so proud of her!

Also graduating is Jordan's girlfriend Alyssa. She will graduate from High School in just 2 weeks. She plans to attend Bible College this fall. We are very proud of her as well!

All of this educational accomplishment has made me think about just how "teachable" we are as Christians?

No doubt, somewhere in the past four years, both Rachel and Alyssa probably wanted to just give up. Throw in the towel. Say "forget" it. But they would not have achieved much if they had just given up and quit.

They pressed in.

They studied hard.

They opened their minds to be taught.

They wanted to learn all that they could learn.

How often are we, as Christians open to be taught new things? Do we ever become content with what we already know? Do we become resentful when someone tries to teach us something new?

I could never understand why people just stop wanting to learn. Why is that? ... is it pride or is it that people just settle for filling their minds with insignificant things rather than expanding their minds?

I think a spirit of humility is required in order to have a teachable heart and mind. We all say that we want to be more like Jesus...but that can never happen if we are not teachable.

PROVERBS 18:15 "Intelligent people are always ready to learn. Their ears are open for knowledge."

MATTHEW 7:26 "Anyone who hears My teaching and doesn't obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand."

God gives us the Holy Spirit to lead us into the Truth. With the help of the Holy Spirit, we are able to have a spirit of learning. Attending church, Reading His Word, having godly relationships and having a Christ-like mentor can also help each of us to learn.

Just like Rachel and Alyssa and all those many graduates receiving their due award ... we as Christians must persevere, push ahead, keep learning and stay focused. There is a great award awaiting us and it will be worth it all!


Monday, May 11, 2009


In case you are not aware ....
is hosting AWESOME BLOGS 2009.
Today until 10:30 pm you can cast your vote for your favorite blog sites.
Someone was very gracious and nominated
for the "Awesomest Faith Blog".
WOW. thank you!
There are alot of my favorite blogs over at
iammommy and it will be difficult to choose one to vote for.
Please check out the poll on the nominated awesome blogs for 2009 and cast your vote.
And if for some reason your faith has been stirred by reading my writings -
I would love to have your vote!

AT THE WELL ... finding my spiritual closet

Today's discussion over AT THE WELL has to do with our spiritual closets. This will be a very interesting topic to discuss today.

The question that we are discussing is:
Do you have a favorite "spiritual place" in your home?
Is it a room? a closet? maybe a chair?

I can remember as a young girl, hearing older people talk about their "spiritual closets", a place that they would go to pray in secret. I always imagined in my mind, that these people were going into their "actual" bedroom closets. Opening the closet door, scooting the shoes on the floor over, as to make room for them to sit down on the floor of their closet. Once situated inside their closet, covered with clothes hanging down from the closet rod and shoes piled up to the right and to the left, they were ready to pray to God.

In their closet.
In the dark.
With the door closed.

Isn't that a funny imagery for a small child to have?

As I grew older, I found out the real meaning of a "spiritual closet". Usually it did not mean an actual closet with shoes and clothes.

MATTHEW 6:6 "But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly."

My spiritual closet is a place that I can get alone with God and shut out all of the interruptions of my world and totally focus on Him and meditate upon His goodness and His truth. Sometimes where I find this place of rest, this place of meditation, can be different depending on my day or my circumstances.

My favorite time to get alone with God is late at night when everyone else in the house is in bed or early in the morning while they are still sleeping. Sometimes, it is really difficult around my house to find a time or a place that it is quiet.

Noises seem to just fill the house. And noise seems to be one of the biggest obstacles that keeps us from spending time in our "closets" with our Father. Many of us wake up to the blare of the radio, then we listen to music on the way to work either on the car radio or the bus, after work or school - we listen to our ipods thru our headphones as we exercise or do our homework. All day long there is a steady stream of noise that takes up space in our heads and it shapes our thoughts. We rarely make mental space for quiet reflection.

My daughter proved this very thing as we rode in the car to Memphis for a Mothers Day outing. I like it to be quiet and still at times, but she wanted the radio on. She could not stand the "quiet", not even for a moment.

We are much like my daughter at times, when things fall quiet, we look for something to fill the silence. Have you ever considered your spirit needing a break from all of the noise that keeps you being filled up with God? Does your mind ever need a break to just ponder on the goodness of God?

David said in Psalms "May my meditation be sweet to Him." (Psalm 104:34) Spending time (on purpose) with God wasn't just an obligation or a duty for David, but it was pleasant for him. That is what I want my time alone with God to be....


Sometimes in order to find this place of pleasant meditation, I might have to actually clear out my bedroom closet and shimmy my way in between the shoe rack and the dust and make it my "spiritual closet". Wherever I can find quiet, stillness, and no interruptions is the place I might call my "closet". Sometimes it is a room in the house, or out on a rigorous walk, driving in the car, or laying prostate on my bed.

My spiritual closet isn't always the place as much as it is giving my attention, my full attention, to God. How many times have you had one of your children come to you and need to speak to you about something really really you say, "wait a minute...lets go inside this closet and talk" and then the two of you go inside a dark closet, you close the door and then ask "ok I can now listen to you." That sounds absurd, doesn't it?

Well at the same time ... the important thing for listening to God is removing all of the distractions that stand in your way. God is asking us to remove all of the distractions that stand in the way of us communicating with Him and listening for His small still voice. God is ready to listen and speak to us in all kinds of different places. He isn't partial to which room in the house it is ...He just wants to commune with us.


Please join us over AT THE WELL to hear what others are saying about their spiritual closets. Click HERE!

Saturday, May 9, 2009


Each of you pour yourself into others....

You teach by what you say.
You teach by what you don't say.

You teach by what you do.
You teach by what you don't do.

Whether you are young or old.
have kids or not yet.

You are molding, changing and having
influence in a young persons life.
Whether you know it or not.


Friday, May 8, 2009

CIRCLE OF Melanie!

This week during my "Circle of Love" segment,
I want to introduce you to a really fun, exciting and spirit-filled friend of mine....



The Fruits of the Spirit
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Galatians 5:22
I am not exactly sure how Melanie and I started sharing with each other in blogger world. But Melanie is just one of those writers, that you instantly just fall in love with. If I am not mistaken, I think our paths crossed about a year ago thru the meme Thankful Thursday. I have been following her writings ever since.
One of the things that I just love about Melanie is her passion. You can sense the passion that she has in everything that she shares with her readers on her blog. She is passionate about her job. She is passionate about her husband. She is passionate about her kids. She is passionate about Jesus Christ. and she is passionate about her readers.
Recently, Melanie has started a study on the book of Colossians on her blog. Here is another passion I have found that she share God's Word with others! On a recent visit to THE FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT, this is what Melanie was sharing....
What an inviting introduction to what the coming weeks will be like over at Melanie's place as she guides us down the Colossae road of "Who Jesus Christ is".
Recently, I was able to speak to Melanie online and she shared alittle bit more about her ministry and her hearts passion. Here is what she had to say....

Melanie @ The Fruits of the Spirit

I’ve been blogging for just over a year now. There are so many things that I like about blogging – the sense of community we all have together, the way we all love and encourage and pray for each other, and all that I have learned from so many of the women whose blogs that I read regularly.

Blogging has also been a source of growth in my own walk with the Lord. I began blogging as a way to write down and put into words what I was learning and studying in God’s Word -- a personal type of accountability, if you will. I find that the act of putting things into words forces me to think and pray on them more and pulls me towards a better understanding of the topic.

I blog about what I am currently learning as I study the Bible. I am working thru one book at a time. I have just recently begun the book of Colossians.

I also blog about my personal walk with the Lord -- areas where He is specifically speaking to me. I participate each in week in a couple of memes; usually Word-Filled Wednesdays and Thankful Thursday. And, from time to time I will include a post on my family/family life.

4. TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF...if you work ~where? ...have a family ~ tell us about them?
I have been blessed with a wonderful husband and two great kids. My son, Josh, is 7 yrs old (1st grade) and my daughter, Abby, is 4 yrs. old.
We are actively involved in our church, enjoy hanging out with our friends or just at home as a family. We enjoy time outdoors together and taking little mini-vacations over a 3-4 day weekend.
I work full-time as a Systems Analyst and my husband runs his own company specializing in installations and maintenance of medical heart and health monitoring systems. We’ve also, just this last year, started a new business “Beads-N-Style”. Our hope is that this business would take off enough to allow me to resign from my job as a Systems Analyst and run our new business from home.

I asked the Lord into my life around 11 yrs of age. Since that time I have experienced high times and low times in serving God, but even during the low times continued to have great faith in God and worked to move forward in my relationship with Him. All the while, continuing to strive to keep my focus on Him and serving Him in my little corner of the world.

God has shown His faithfulness to me in so many different ways throughout my life. He provisions have always been great, He is with me always, He guides and He protects – regardless of the circumstances and regardless of how I react or choose to behave. I can clearly see how certain events have led the way to where I am today and I am confident that I am right where God wants me to be for this time.

It’s so hard for me to narrow down to just one… could I share two?

“Don’t worry over anything whatever; tell God every detail of your needs in earnest and thankful prayer, and the peace of God which transcends human understanding, will keep constant guard over your hearts and minds as they rest in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

“Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. Hebrews 4:16

I can’t tell you how many times I have turned to this first verse and how every single time God is faithful. When I truly turn it all over to God – completely letting it go -- He does keep guard over my heart and He gives me peace.

This second verse is one that I have claimed for myself for this year. I believe that God wants us to come before Him boldly, fully expecting Him to meet our needs and fully expecting Him to answer. This is how I want to always pray and seek God – boldly.

Blog from your heart -- always desiring to serve the Lord and share His love with all those that may find your blog.
"Thank you MELANIE for such great advice, certainly anytime we visit your page we can see you doing exactly that...sharing Gods love with all those that visit with you. Thank you for the wonderful way that you minister to us thru your writings and thank you for your encouragement to me and to WOMEN TAKING A STAND!" -Laurie

Visit MELANIE over at THE FRUITS OF THE here!