Tuesday, June 30, 2009

A PIECE OF MY HEART ... who do we resemble?

Have you ever heard someone say that dogs resemble their owners? We have 3 dogs. I don't think any of them look like me or act like me. I have seen pictures of people who actually resemble their pets. Look at these and tell me if you see any resemblance....
Seeing these pictures and thinking about who we may look like reminds me of what can happen if we hang around the wrong crowd. I have been talking with my 13 year old daughter alot about these kinds of things. When we surround ourselves with the wrong crowd, eventually we end up being like them. We resemble those that we spend the most time with.

You can walk onto any high school campus and see how teens imitate others intentionally with hair styles or body piercings. After awhile what seems like intentional imitation now becomes unintentional imitation with things like speech patterns, body language and attitudes. This is not just a lesson for teen-agers, but in our adult relationships as well.

Your parents may have been on to something when they warned you to be careful who you hung out with...

HEBREWS 6:12b "imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised."

Who we resemble the most may just be the one that we hang out with the most. I wonder what our speech patterns, body language and attitudes would be like if God was put as top priority in our lives.

My prayer is that I would intentionally imitate the habits of God!

and that is a piece of my heart today;

Monday, June 29, 2009


**I am hosting AT THE WELL today **

Today as we gather around the Well, I want to talk about something that has been whispered about for some time now. You probably heard some of the mutterings and saw some of the looks if you would happen to come up to the well with your bucket for water. The ladies gathered there giggled and laughed as they watched you come closer. You never quite felt accepted by all of the women, and one time you overheard the not-so-nice things they were saying.

They not only existed around the well, but they still exist today.Mean girls exist in every city and every state across the country. Every schoolyard is overrun by them, it doesn't matter if it is urban, rural, Christian or public schools. Mean girls can be found on every playground. These girls can be said to be equal to the schoolyard bully, except instead of giving out black eyes, they leave bruised hearts.

Mean girls can cause emotional scars so deep that some girls might want to change schools in order to avoid their cruelty, others will find themselves in some kind of therapy years later to find healing for the emotional damage caused by these mean girls.

If you think dealing with mean girls is something new. You are wrong. They have been present throughout the ages and the Bible is full of stories of mean girls! Most likely, you are reading this post today and you, yourself, were either pegged as a "mean girl" or you were a victim of a mean girl.

In today's culture though, we are seeing girls who are being meaner than ever! Television has a lot to do with this...we have become desensitized and now because of reality shows and talk shows, we no longer resist getting in each others face and criticizing one another. Girls today have a "speak-your-mind," "tell-it-like-it-is" mentality which has taken the meaning of a "mean girl" to a whole new level.

The mean girls of today certainly make the mean girls of my generation seem like Shirley Temple! Today, technology has allowed girls to be vicious, rude, and down right mean. Girls can spread their venom electronically with the click of a mouse through emails, instant messaging, facebook and mypsace.Mean girls are not just a problem with adolescent teens. Mean girls are grown women too. And sometimes mean girls can be found in your own church pew. Christian girls are not exempt from associating with mean girls or even being a mean girl.


  • Mean girls base their worth on being in control and exerting power over others.
  • Mean girls use manipulation or scare tactics.
  • Mean girls do not hesitate to ridicule or make fun of someone.
  • Mean girls look for support from others that will join their team of being mean.
  • Mean girls often express outward meanness to cover up a lack of self confidence or feeling of worth.
LUKE 6:32, 33 "If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' do that."

LUKE 6:35, 36 "But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons (and daughters) of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful."
We must be set apart.
We must be different.

Questions to consider:
What do we do when we come across a mean girl?

As a Titus 2 woman, how can we raise our daughters to not be a mean girl?

Looking back, can you remember a time that you were a victim of a mean girl... how did you overcome?

Looking back, can you remember a time that you WERE a mean girl... what changed you?

If you would like to link up your post today, please go to the AT THE WELL homepage. Find more thoughts on this subject HERE!

Friday, June 26, 2009

CIRCLE OF LOVE ... meet Denise

This week on CIRCLE OF LOVE, I am happy to introduce to you my friend and a friend to most of you ~DENISE who pens...

Denise will not be a "new friend" to most of you, because most likely at some point in time of your blogging experience you have probably received an encouraging word left on your blog from Denise.

When visiting Denise's page, you will notice that she signs her posts "Warrior of Jesus". I love that! Isn't that an awesome thing for someone to remember us by ... "a warrior, a soldier, a fighter" for the cause of Christ. Denise certainly lives up to that signature.

Denise has a great passion for others. It is evident in the way that she is always encouraging others. Another way her passion is evident is when she blogs about her sweet husband. She always has an encouraging word about him and praises him for all that he does. She is certainly a warrior in her relationships. But the most powerful passion that you will find over at Denise's blog is the passion that she has for Jesus Christ and for those that are hurting and lost. This is what impresses me so much about Denise ... that she passionately loves her Heavenly Father and loves doing His business and is steadily a warrior for the Kingdom!

Despite physical ailments that could easily keep someone down, Denise is the ultimate example of how even in times of difficulty, God is still in control and He deserves all of our praise.

Denise ... you are a blessing to me, and to so many and I believe there will be a very special crown in heaven for a lovely angel such as yourself. :)

In addition to Shortybear's Place, Denise also has another blog over at:

If you are in the midst of a battle or struggle, I know that your heart and spirit will be refreshed and renewed after visiting FREE TO BE ME as well. Here is a recent post from her blog "Free To Be Me"...

"Start today by lifting your hearts in praise to the One who created the
heart that beats within you my friend. Make your heart smile, by praising its
Maker. Lift your hearts higher, higher, and even higher, until you touch the
very heart, of the one most worthy of your praise!!"

Recently, Denise shared more from her heart with me online. Let's get better acquainted with our dear sister in the Lord and special friend....

My name is Denise Oldham, and you can find me on the web at: http://shortybearsplace.blogspot.com/ or at http://freetobeme-denise.blogspot.com/

I have been blogging for about three years now. My favorite thing about blogging is being able to share the love of Jesus with others.

I basically blog about my life, and Jesus.

4. TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF...if you work ~where? ...have a family ~ tell us about them?
I recently celebrated my 24th wedding anniversary to Eddie, otherwise known as my lovebug. I am a stay at home wife. Unfortunately, we were not able to have children, but God knows best.

20 years

I have had several close calls with death, but God kept me here. He is so faithful to love me, and watch over my diabetes.

Philippians 4:13: I can do all things through Christ Who gives me strength.

My diabetes really tears my body down, but God daily gives me His strength to run my race of life.

Be your true self, not someone you wish you were. Share Jesus, let Him shine brightly on your blog.

Thank you Denise for that great advice and certainly you are a living testimony of that very thing ... being true to yourself and sharing Jesus thru your blog! You are a huge blessing to me, to many readers and to all the women who are taking a stand with us! -Blessings and love, Laurie

PLEASE GO BY AND VISIT DENISE TODAY ... Shortybearsplace and Freetobeme !

I WOULD LOVE TO FEATURE YOUR BLOG NEXT! Please CLICK HERE to find out how you and your blog could be featured in a future CIRCLE OF LOVE segment. You can get better acquainted with your fellow blogger's right here every Friday!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

THANKFUL THURSDAY ... deserved rewards

**Lynn will be hosting THANKFUL THURSDAY for the month of July. Thank you for joining me this month, I have enjoyed sharing our grateful hearts together. Please see the future TT hosting schedule on my sidebar.**


Have you ever dropped a coin in the coin slot of a vending machine and not received what you wanted?

How disappointing it is to mash that button that says "Snicker bar" and receive a "Granola bar" instead. When this happens ... you know for certain that something has gone wrong. How in the world could this crazy machine plunk out something that you did not want?

So what do you do when this happens. Kick the machine? Throw the granola bar in the trash? Get angry? Try again?

Many of us (consciously or unconsciously) see God just like this vending machine. We think if we put our token of a 5 minute prayer in, that out will pop exactly what WE want. The truth is that God wants the very, very best for us and sometimes what is best for us is NOT what we ordered. Some of us don't need that "Snickers bar", what would be better for us is the "Granola bar".
NEHEMIAH 9:17 " You are a forgiving God, gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love."
When we constantly seek Him, and continue to look for what His desires are for our lives and not our fleshly desires ... we can then find the deserved rewards that we are seeking! God is a gracious and compassionate God, He is slow to anger and abounds in love. He knows better what we are in need of than we are. Arent' you thankful that God knows exactly what is best for us?
What are you thankful for this week? ~ Share with us your grateful heart and link your post up with us below in Mr. Linky.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Many times during an election, particularly a political election, we rejoice with the winner. Especially if the one we voted for came out as the winner. How many times do we ever give thought to the one who lost.

Even great men can be labeled as "losers"!

THOMAS DEWEY... had many fine accomplishments in the 1930's as a specialized prosecutor, he was also elected 3 times as governor of New York. However, most people remember Thomas Dewey as the loser of the 1948 presidential election to Harry Truman.

Another word for losing is ... "rejection".

REJECTION... it is one of the hardest things that many of us have to face in this life. All the way from losing an election to being rejected by someone of the opposite sex. We are rejected in love, turned down for that "ideal" job, athletes are cut from the team, contractors get out-bidded, graduating seniors get refused admission to the school of their choice.

In last week's YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL, I polled the readers and asked them the following question..."What is the toughest experience of rejection you have had to face?" The top 3 responses were...

1. 31% of those voting said that it was tough when rejected for a job.
2. Another 31% polled said that it was difficult when a parent rejected them.
3. 26% voted and said that the toughest rejection for them was divorce.

This poll confirms that each of us deal with rejection of some sort in our lives, and the most difficult forms of rejection comes thru our relationships. I am reminded that even in the midst of our rejection, we must remember that not only was Jesus rejected, but He came into the world TO BE rejected.

However, God took this rejection and used it. Have you ever considered rejection something that God could use?

In the movie, SEABISCUIT, we saw a story unravel about a horse who was considered small and lazy but yet this horse became a great racehorse, all because of one over sized horse jockey that knew what it was like to be rejected. Here is a story of how one man overcame his rejection and made good of it.
No matter what we do, no matter who we are... someone will reject us. This is a fact and we can very well expect rejection to happen to us. So how do we become like SEABISCUIT and overcome this kind of rejection?

PSALM 118:22-24 "The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. (23) This came from the Lord; it is wonderful in our eyes. (24) this is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it."

SEABISCUIT had a man who had faith in the abilities and strengths that this horse was capable of. You and I have such a man also that believes in us. If we could just take our eyes off of the hope of never being rejected again and focus on how the rejection in our lives can mold us and form us in His image.

Thank you for joining me for WEDNESDAY WEEKLY WORD, a blog post devoted each week to review my thoughts on a current study that I am personally doing. This week I studied Isaiah 53:3 where we learn that Jesus would be despised and rejected by men. What a reminder to me that without the rejection and the pain ... I may not be able to see exactly the sacrifice that Jesus made for me at Calvary!

YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL: Please take time to vote in this weeks YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL, your opinion really does matter and you will help write next week's Wednesday Weekly Word!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A PIECE OF MY HEART... a mother's laughter

I just love spending time with my 13 year old daughter, Anna. There are times where she just cracks me up with the things that she says and does. It doesn't take long before anyone can see what a funny side she has to her personality. For a mom, there is nothing more that I enjoy than to tilt my head back and laugh with my kids.

I think that laughter was pretty important to God or He would not have spent so much time talking about it. The word "laughter" appears about 40 times in the Bible. When I think about laughter in the Bible, I immediately think about the story of Abraham and Sarah. Abraham was 100 years old and Sarah was way past child-bearing age when the miracle birth of their son Isaac happened.

GENESIS 21:6 "God has made me laugh, and all who hear will laugh with me."

Can you imagine the laughter that this momma (Sarah) had?

I have read commentaries that said that Sarah laughed at the situation and everyone who heard about it also laughed. Still today, we laugh when we read this account.

But the laughter that I believe Sarah had, is much like the laughter I had earlier this evening with my daughter Anna ... a laughter of delight!

A joy-filled attitude can work like a daily dose of vitamins. Sarah knew what it was like to have the wisdom of a merry heart.


and that is a piece of my heart today;

Monday, June 22, 2009

CHANGE YOUR WORLD ... laced with grace devo!

Please join me over at LACED WITH GRACE today!

I have shared a devotion entitled, "CHANGE YOUR WORLD".

"When you woke up this morning, was it your intention to change the world? Most of us probably got up and thought about what to wear or what to cook for dinner or our thoughts immediately raced to all of the tasks that we must tackle for the day. Changing the world was probably the furthest thing from our mind. To say that we started our day out this morning with the purpose of changing the world almost sounds delusional. But if you think about it, each one of us changes the world each and every day whether we want to or not. Most of the time ..."
click HERE to read it!

Friday, June 19, 2009

FATHERS DAY VIDEO ...special guest writer

Today, I have a special guest writer. My 13 year old daughter
wanted to post a special message to her father for Fathers Day.


As many of you know, my daddy is Clayton Adams. He is not a "normal" dad. He is one of those dads that loves me no matter what!

DEUTERONOMY 10:15 "The Lord delighted only in your fathers, to love them; and He chose their descendants after them, you above all peoples, as it is this day."

  • The word "delighted" means HIGHLY PLEASED.
  • The word "descendants" means AFTER AN ANCESTOR
My father, Clayton Adams is one of the few men I have met that was loved as a kid, who loves his kids, and has passed that love down to the next generation.

This video that I have made shows just how much I love him and he loves me!


CIRCLE OF LOVE ... meet Shannon

This week on CIRCLE OF LOVE
I would like to introduce you to SHANNON!
You can find Shannon over at her blog ... Mourning into Dancing
My path crossed with Shannon over at the THANKFUL THURSDAY meme. I have really loved stopping by Shannon's blog site. Not only does she have a gift for giving thanks to God, but she has an incredible strength and passion to share her gratitude even in the midst of tragedy and heartbreak.

Shannon is very passionate about her writing. She has a heart for homeschooling, which many times you will find her writing about on her blog. Another passion that you will find over at "Mourning into Dancing" is Shannon's passion about her family and all the ups and downs that trickle in.

You will also find healing and comfort in the words that Shannon pens on her blog. Nearly eight months ago, Shannon and her husband lost their precious daughter, Chaya Eliana at nearly 25 weeks (6.5 months) of gestation, when Chaya Eliana was born sleeping. This huge loss was not the first one for this precious family, prior to this they experienced other miscarriages.

Loss of dreams.

But somehow, thru it all, Shannon has been able to reach up and grab hold of the hand of the One who gives comfort, strength and ability to share with others. I am so thankful for her passionate heart and her willingness to share her story with others. Thru the Grace of God, other women who have walked this same path of disappointment can be ministered to.

I would like to share with you the post that Shannon wrote "Walking with you", I know it will minister to you as it has to me...

March 2007. After having a couple weeks of some light bleeding, my bleeding became more pronounced. It's not something I hadn't experience before. At that time I had already had two miscarriages. But I still clung to the hope that everything was fine.I had to leave work early the day it all started really going downhill. The bleeding was quite excessive, so I called my midwife and got an appointment immediately. I went in right away for her to do an ultrasound. The news was not good. I should have been nine weeks along, but the fetus was only the size of a six week old fetus. And there was no longer a heartbeat. Even already having two living children, I felt my world crashing in over me.

April 2008. I had JUST gotten the positive on the home pregnancy test when I start feeling strange and started spotting. My midwife told me to just go to the
hospital because it was late. So I did. I went to the hospital only to find out I was dilating. Another baby gone. This one would make four.

October 2008 I am admitted to the hospital at 20 weeks pregnant (I got pregnant immediately after losing my last baby) with a severe migraine that could not be contained. There had been some concern about my baby due to slightly less amniotic fluid than there should have been, so my doctor wanted to do an amniocentesis to determine if there was something wrong with her that was causing my illness. I was also told I needed to decide if I would terminate the pregnancy.I decided I would not terminate, and if there was something wrong, God would have to be the one to take care of it.Everything appeared fine, aside from the amniotic fluid level and the fact that she was measuring about three weeks behind in size, but I was informed I may be required to give birth by 26 weeks gestation.I was put on bed rest to try to bring up the amniotic fluid level, but it didn't work. The amniotic fluid continued to decrease steadily.Four weeks after my hospital admission I go in for another ultrasound to check on her growth and make sure everything was alright. She was measuring even further behind, and the umbilical cord was not working properly and the amniotic fluid was non-existent. Every other pump was backwards, away from her instead of to her. I was told to prepare myself, because it looked like she wouldn't make it. But if she did make it
another two weeks, she would have to be delivered.

Two days later, at another checkup, we had an ultrasound. Her heart had stopped. My Chaya Eliana was gone. I was so very angry with God. Ever since finding out I was pregnant I begged God to let me keep this one. He had given me what I was SURE were signs that she would live unlike my others. I just couldn't understand why, after all of that, He would allow this to happen to her, to us.I was sent home to pack some bags and go to the hospital to be induced. On my way home, I turned on the radio and the first song I heard was Jeremy Camp's There Will Be a Day. I downloaded it when I got home and put it on my mp3 player to take with me to the hospital. I listened to it all night. The entire time I was in the hospital.There WILL be a day with no more tears, no more pain, no more fears.There WILL BE A DAY.


Wow. What a wonderful day that will be when Chaya Eliana is reunited with her parents and her loved ones. Recently, Shannon shared a little more in depth with me online and this is a deeper piece of her heart that I would like to share with you...

1. PLEASE TELL US YOUR NAME AND WHERE WE CAN FIND YOU ON THE WEB?My name is Shannon. You can find my Blogspot profile at http://www.blogger.com/profile/03895587986129795555

I've been blogging for many years, but only recently really started blogging at Blogspot. I enjoy blogging because it's easier than writing in a paper journal (which I also do at times), especially when you have a lot to say, as I sometimes do.

I don't believe there is really any particular thing I blog about. I blog about everything, from my struggles with dealing with the death of my daughter to homeschooling to relationship struggles to ex-relationship struggles. Whatever I feel like writing about, that's what I write about.

4. TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF...if you work ~where? ....have a family ~ tell us about them?
At this present moment, I am unemployed. I quit my job in October in an attempt to save the life of my unborn daughter. Once I was able to work again, the economy capsized so horribly that there are no jobs available for me.I have two children, both boys ages 8 and 11, whom I home school, and a husband who loves me despite my many quirks. Our marriage is a struggle, but we're hanging in there.

I was raised Christian, but as an adult went my own way. It wasn't really until I HAD to rely on God that I let myself have a relationship with Him. Every day He teaches me more and more about Him and helps guide me to the faith that I desire to have.

This question is too difficult to answer. It involves my beautiful stillborn baby girl, and the story can be found in my blog Mourning into Dancing.

Revelation 21:4, but especially the first part of that verse:"He will remove all of their sorrows, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain."

It is the Scripture I cling to on my deepest days of grief. It helps me to remember that even though there is tremendous pain right now, there is a place where we will be together where there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. A place where I, and my family, can live with the rest of our children who are not with us and never have to fear pain again.

Don't write for anyone but yourself. Just be you. Don't hold back your feelings or opinions for fear of upsetting someone. By all means be tactful about it, but don't hold back. Writing can be cathartic, and if you hold back, it won't be healing enough.

Wow. What an amazing example that Shannon is ... sharing straight from heart, not holding anything back from God so He can bring healing and comfort to all those those broken places of her heart. Thank you for being such an encouragement to so many, especially to me and to all the WOMEN TAKING A STAND! - thank you, Laurie
Please go by today and visit Shannon and introduce yourself to her. CLICK HERE to find her blog.... Mourning into Dancing!

I WOULD LOVE TO FEATURE you and your blog! CLICK HERE to find out how you can be featured in an upcoming "Circle of Love" segment.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

THANKFUL THURSDAY...Your Father's eyes

"You have your father's eyes!"
"You are the exact image of your Dad!"

You will hear common remarks such as this at a family reunion or a gathering where distant relatives have not seen you or your children in a while. When people look at your family, usually they can see a resemblance in either the physical characteristics or your mannerisms. Hand gestures, facial expressions, speech patterns. Brown eyes, big ears, dark hair, broad shoulders. When someone listens to you or looks at you, can they tell what family you are from?

Jesus said that there is one way to live that will make us recognizable as one of His children. Being a peacemaker. When people look at you, do they see peace?

MATTHEW 5:9 "God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God."
I am thankful today on this Thankful Thursday for the eyes of my Father. In a few days we will honor our earthly fathers, and I hope that you have some godly attributes passed down to you from your father, but the eyes of the Father that I speak of is not the genetic color passed down ...but it is the love, the peace, the joy and the grace that can be seen thru the eyes of our Heavenly Father.

When people see you ....do they see the family resemblance?

What are you thankful for today? Are you thankful for a Father that loves you? For a Father that looks upon you with such a great love and adoration? Please share with us your grateful heart by linking up below in Mr. Linky.

~ Please check out the side bar of my blog to see the schedule for future TT hosts!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

WEDNESDAY WEEKLY WORD ... making an entrance

Most people know that how a person makes an entrance into a place is quite important in establishing how others see him or her. At parties, many people like to arrive "fashionably late" so that everyone else will have already arrived and they can receive a maximum amount of attention. Other people will make alot of noise or create a commotion as they come in for the same reason ... for attention!

I was glad to see that the readers of this blog did not fall into either of these categories. In last week's YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL, I polled the readers the following question: "When you make an entrance at a party, what are you most likely to do?" The top 3 responses are...

53% of those voting said that they come early and help with the work.
20% voted and said that they will scout out who is there before making their move.
13% of those polled, said that they will slip in when nobody is looking.

In ancient times, kings would like to "make an entrance". Many of them would have ornate arches made and they would enter their city after a great military victory. I personally visited such places when my husband and I traveled to Rome (the Arch of Constantine) and also in Paris (Napoleon's Arc d'triumph).

(my husband and myself in Rome...see the emperor's entrance-way behind us?)

You would think that the entrance ways for the King of all kings would be most elaborate! When Christ entered Jerusalem long ago, He did enter as a king might have, except for one thing ...Jesus was not concerned about what was fashionable and no arch marked his entrance.

There were many people who treated Jesus as they would have treated another king , they spread clothes and waved branches in front him. These were all appropriate actions for receiving a king, but Jesus made His entrance in a very humble manner. He did not ride on a chariot, or arrived being carried by royalty...instead He rode in on a donkey, which was considered a common servant animal.

ZECHARIAH 9:9 "Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout in triumph, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your King is coming to you; He is righteous and victorious, humble and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey."

Royalty and kings normally would ride in on majestic warhorses, but Jesus was not just any ordinary King. He was different. If you think about it, you will recall that most kings would ride in AFTER a victory, Jesus' triumphal entry was BEFORE His victory.

Speaking of victory ... a victory for a king and his army could be marked by military power, but the victory of Jesus Christ, the King of Kings was won by suffering and love. His suffering and love at Calvary.

When I think about how Jesus entered Jerusalem on that day that we remember as Palm Sunday, those people who hailed Him really had no idea what kind of a King that Jesus would be. Praise God for the King of Kings, the One who came in the Name of the Lord. The One who is worthy to be praised.


Dear Lord...Thank you for being my King of Kings! Help me to not be like that crowd on the first Palm Sunday who praised Jesus in word and song only. May the praise, worship and adoration for my King come straight from my heart! - AMEN.

Wednesday Weekly Word is a special weekly post designated to my personal thoughts of a current study I am doing. This week I was reading the book of Zechariah and was reminded of the majestic arrival of Jesus Christ. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this study with me, what an encouragement all of you are to me and to all WOMEN WHO ARE TAKING A STAND!

YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL ... please take time to vote in this weeks poll. Find it on the side bar of the blog. Your opinion really does matter!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A PIECE OF MY HEART ... sound the alarm

This past weekend we had storms come thru our area. The winds picked up, the rain was powerful and the sirens went off.

Right when the storm brewed up, I had just pulled into the drive-thru bank. As I was waiting for my deposit slip, the storm really hit and the power at the bank went out. (lol) The guy inside the bank was trying to talk to me thru the window because the intercom did not work without power. He was trying to tell me to go on because they could not open the drawer. The entire time he was trying to communicate with me, I wasn't budging because even though I had handed over my deposit, I did not have a deposit slip in my hand. So while the storms got stronger and the sirens blared, here I was running into the front of the bank to get my money back. I wasn't about to leave without proof that my deposit had been made.

I am reminded of the warnings that sirens give us, but yet so many times we dismiss the warning because we want proof that we are really in danger. Believe me when you hear a tornado siren go off, it is a warning for us to take cover. When a smoke detector goes off, it is alerting us to a fire. When a trumpet was blasted in Old Testament times, it was a warning to the people of Israel.

LEVITICUS 23:24 "On the first day of the appointed month in early autumn, you are to observe a day of complete rest. It will be an official day for holy assembly, a day commemorated with loud blasts of a trumpet."

The people in ancient Israel needed to be awakened from their careless attitudes toward God. God knew the tendency that the people would have to drift away so He set up a yearly holiday called the Festival of Trumpets, which was to blast the people out of their spiritual laziness. The trumpet was to serve as a reminder to the people to examine themselves and recognize God's provision in their lives as well as His grace.

I wonder if a trumpet would sound like that, how many of us would be awakened or if we would be like I was at the bank that day the sirens were going off? Would we be attentive and take the warning seriously or would we be looking for proof that it was really a warning from God?

Lord, help me to have my ear tuned to hear Your sound of alarm when I need to turn from sin. May my heart and my spirit be tuned in to the sound of Your voice and like the Israelites, may I be awakened quickly by Your warnings. -AMEN

and that is a piece of my heart today;

Monday, June 15, 2009

AT THE WELL ... once upon a dream

Today I am linking up with my friends over AT THE WELL. Even though the discussion questions refer mainly to homemaking, one question asked of us this week really stood out and it is the one question that I would like to concentrate on for today.

1. What are some Bible verses that inspire you to keep blooming where you have been planted?

When I read this question, memories flooded my mind and my spirit as I recalled a time in my life that God spoke those words into my spirit .."bloom where you are planted".

Have you ever come to a place in your life where you are not sure which direction to go or even if you are walking down the right road. Prior to coming into the ministry full time with my husband, this is a place that I found myself, not only spiritually but emotionally. I knew in my heart what God was calling me to do, but I didn't know how to get to the place He was calling me to.

"Bloom where you are planted" is all I could hear God saying to me.

If you have ever found yourself thinking "I wish I could do more with my life", you are not alone. If you have ever had the idea that there might be something that you are missing, there probably is. The thing you might be missing out on is the dream that you were designed to live out, perhaps like me, you knew there was a dream but you didn't know how to attain the dream!
If you have experienced this before, perhaps the very thought of your dream has kept you awake at night or you have felt a stirring in your spirit every time you see someone else doing exactly what you think you should be doing.

Before you hang up your dream because you feel like it is too late or your dream is way out of reach...just take time to take another look at what could be one of the greatest discoveries of your life!

Sometimes finding the road map to your dreams is simply "blooming where you are planted." Do your very best at what you are doing now, look for opportunities that God gives you and be joyful in the place you are right now!

Some of you reading this may feel like you have already given up your dream and you find it difficult to find joy and peace in what you are doing right now. Maybe it is your job, or a ministry that you wish you could do. Maybe you dream of changing careers, or moving to another city or state. I have dreamed of some of these things, but I had to ask myself....


PHILIPPIANS 4:11 "Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content."

Finding peace and contentment in your current situation will be the stepping stone to fulfilling your dream!

You can visit the homepage of AT THE WELL and find other thoughts on this topic today!

Friday, June 12, 2009

CIRCLE OF LOVE...meet Hannah

is this week's spotlight!

I would like to introduce you to a very new friend of mine, HANNAH. I crossed paths with Hannah recently through the AT THE WELL ministry. I have the opportunity to meet alot of different bloggers when I host the At the Well ministry, and some blogs stand out alittle more than others whenever I visit all of the discussion participants. Preparing for Our Children's Future was one of those blogs that caught my attention.

Hannah is a homemaker who really loves God and her family. She is currently homeschooling her 2 children and considers it a journey. I love that! What I love about Hannah's blog is how she takes history (which she loves) and brings it alive on the pages that she pens here in bloggyland. Hannah has a passion for the future of our children, and teaching them about our country and how learning about world history is going to prepare them for their futures as our next leaders and teachers.

Hannah is not only teaching her own children about our forefathers and what our country was founded on, but she brings back the history that so many of us have forgotten about. The freedoms, the speeches, the trust in God that this country was founded on can be found once again on the pages of Hannah's blog. I say "Let's get back to the basics of life" - and in order to do that, we might just have to start with the history that our country was founded on.

I applaud Hannah for her love and passion, not only for the importance of our world history but the dedication that she has to bring forth God's Word as the foundation of all that we stand for in this great country of the United States.

Surely "In God we CAN trust!"

Here is a sample of a recent post, where Hannah shares with her readers parts of Samuel Adams speech:

Samuel Adams Speech (part 7) Saturday

" 'Tis a strange species of generosity which requires a return infinitely more valuable than anything it could have bestowed; that demands as a reward for a defense of our property a surrender of those inestimable privileges to the arbitrary will of vindictive tyrants, which alone give value to that very property.Courage, then, my countrymen; our contest is not only whether we ourselves shall be free, but whether there shall be left to mankind an asylum on earth for civil and religious liberty. Dismissing, therefore, the justice of our cause as incontestable, the only question is, What is best for us to pursue in our present circumstances?The doctrine of dependence on Great Britain is, I believe, generally exploded; but as I would attend to the honest weakness of the simplest of men, you will pardon me if I offer a few words on that subject." -Samuel Adams
To be continued.......Or read the whole speech here.

History, Homeschooling and How to live a pure, wholesome godly life is certainly what you will find Hannah penning over at Preparing For Our Children's Future. I appreciate the stand that Hannah is taking for Christ!

Recently, Hannah shared a piece of her heart with me online and I would like to share with you what she had to say. Settle in and open your heart to a new friend...

Hannah "Preparing For Our Children's Future" and I have been so privileged to help a new blog friend with "The Conservative Homeschooler"!!

Since January '09. Meeting other mom's like me! I am very conservative and passionate about what I believe! As a Pro-life, homemaker, homeschooler, homebirthing(!), 23 yr. old wife, I am different compared to most women my age, and do not have many local friends! Since blogging I have been blessed with meeting women who are more like me and getting to know a few long distances friends better! I have been encouraged and inspired and do not feel so alone!

Learning History, educating ourselves and our children, principles and values, what is going on in our country, homeschooling, and some other things that interest me, such as songs, recipes, herbs, books, homemaking, etc!

4. TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF...if you work ~where? ...have a family ~ tell us about them?
As I mentioned, I am a wife, mother, homemaker, and I am so happy to be a child of my Great Lord and Savior!
My husband is the most wonderful man in the whole world! I am sooo blessed that God put him in my life and then fulfilled me with him! We have two precious little girls. who are just too smart! (They get it from their Daddy!)! And pray that the Lord may choose to bless us with more!
I grew up in a Christian home, but it was filled with it's full share of problems. At 17, I decided, God was not going to be forced upon me as He had been portrayed, anymore! I wanted to know who He really was and who He could be to me! So I dove into my own Bible for myself, until He was my own Lord and Savior!

Oh! He has blessed me SOO much and proven Himself faithful in so many ways! to name a few: writing my love story for me! And blessing me with the best husband for me! Blessing us with 2 wonderful girls and the home birth of both of them! helping me thru the last months of the last pregnancy and a month early birth, with a very healthy baby! He has always been there for me, I see Him at work all around me and He blesses us everyday! He is SOOO Great, Good, wonderful and Amazing!

There are so many favorites! But John 10:10 has been a favorite for a while now " The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." John 10:10!

I see so many who do not value life and the blessings all around them. They enjoy worldly pleasures and live life for the day. Others worry about the future, and live in fear and greed. because they do not believe in Christ and the eternal life He gives, they live a sad miserable life on this earth. I am happy that I know I will live with my Savior someday in a place free from sin and sadness! I have life and Praise the Lord everyday that I do not have to live in fear or worry about tomorrow! As the song goes "Many things about tomorrow I don't seem to understand, but I know who holds tomorrow and I know Who holds my hand"!

Do not compromise your beliefs, values and principles! Do not try to be someone who you are not! Be Christ-like in all you say and do on your blogs. Just as Christ knows your thoughts and heart, He knows and sees your blog too! What would Jesus think of your blog?! Do not participate in ungodly things on your blog and computer!

Also, I personally think too much time is spent on the "fuzzy" things in life and not enough on the things that matter. Sure a lot of it is cute, but time on your blog should be more focused on Christ and others and not so much ourselves! I started blogging because I saw so many homeschool mom's who seemed concerned about the importance of homeschooling their children, but then they do not seem concerned about their children's future and what is down the road for them and how best to prepare them for what ever may come!
It is not about us, it is about our children! We have to do what is right in God's eyes and best for them. So I would say, blog as Jesus would, blog selflessly and blog with care and concern for your children and grandchildren! And always praise the Lord and share His goodness with others!

God bless you in your high-callings as wives and mothers!

WOW! and to think Hannah is only 23 years old...I wish I had the wisdom and the faith of this dear friend when I was her age. Hannah is a Titus 2 woman who is making a difference, not only in her girls lives but many lives and hearts of those that read her writings. "Blog as Jesus would" - that just makes me want to shout alittle bit. I think it is absolutely amazing that God is opening doors for the internet to be used to spread His Word and His love. Thank you Hannah for reminding us of what our freedoms are based upon ... You are such an encouragement to me and to all of the WOMEN TAKING A STAND! - God bless, LAURIE

You can visit Hannah over at PREPARING FOR OUR CHILDREN'S FUTURE by clicking HERE!

FUTURE "CIRCLE OF LOVE" FEATURES: I would love to feature you and your ministry of blogging on a future segment of CIRCLE OF LOVE. If you would like to be highlighted, please CLICK HERE to find out how!!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

THANKFUL THURSDAY ... true beauty

Welcome back to THANKFUL THURSDAY. "Rejoicing in the Lord always and again I say rejoice." We gather here to give thanks to our Lord.
"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder"
This is a saying that has been around for centuries. Have you ever considered the meaning of this saying? It must mean that there is no decision of whether something is beautiful or ugly but rather beauty is a matter of preference or opinion.

Each of us have a longing for beauty. Think of the things that draw your eye ... the beauty of a green valley, or the beautiful scene that a mountaintop overlooks. Even a marble statute or a perfect golf swing can appear beautiful to us. How about the perfectly orchestrated music piece or a perfect, luscious ripe strawberry. Seeing and experiencing such beauty around us can add so much joy to our lives.

I have never been so awestruck at the beauty of an artist as I was when I visited Rome and Paris with my husband a few years ago. Walking thru the Sistine Chapel and gazing upon the beauty of Michelangelo's hand was simply breathtaking to me. A great painting is beautiful not because of an isolated color or texture but because great artists such as Michelangelo combined many elements together to perfect his creation of beauty.
(FROM MY CAMERA...Michelangelo's artwork at the Sistine Chapel)

This could also be said about God. God Himself is ultimate beauty. What makes God beautiful is not just His attributes but how each one of those attributes bring perfect harmony and balance and completeness.

Whenever I am able to get a glimpse of how great my God is, it literally takes my breath away. It is His true beauty that I long to fall down to worship. I am so thankful for the beauty in His creation but nothing compares to the beauty of the Creator!

1 PETER 3:4 "You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God."

WHAT IS IT ABOUT GOD'S CREATION THAT CAUSES YOU TO MARVEL? Please share your grateful heart with us here on Thankful Thursday. You can link up your post by clicking on mr linky below and adding your name and post. I look forward to hearing what good things God has done for you this week!

~looking for the schedule for TT hosts? Please check out the sidebar of my blog for future Thankful Thursdays! ~

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Have you ever considered what protesters or activists groups do? These groups usually are demanding some kind of freedom or justice and they want it NOW! Usually such protests come from some kind of frustration with the way the world is working.

Justice usually does not come instantly or NOW like most protesters demand. If I recall correctly, Nelson Mandela began his struggle in the 50's but yet it was not until the 1990's that he won the Nobel Peace Prize. In the long journey of fighting for freedom, Mandela found himself imprisoned for his fight. And still today, we see injustices still being fought for many causes such as women rights, racial issues and the rich vs the poor.

The author of Ecclesiastes could very well sum up the injustices and the frustrations that we experience in our world today:

(4:1) "I observed all the acts of oppression being done under the sun. Look at the tears of those who are oppressed; they have no one to comfort them. Power is with those who oppress them; they have no one to comfort them."


In last weeks YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL, I polled the readers the following question, "What are you most likely to get discouraged about today?" The top 3 answers were:

1. 35% of those voting said that family finances were sure to get them discouraged today.
2. 21% of the polled readers said that they were not discouraged today.
3. While 14% said that they are either discouraged in family life, the state of the world or the lack of morality in the world.

We all experience discouragement from time to time, but never before have I experienced such discouragement in our country as we are experiencing right now. I can't tell you how many times I have heard a young person say "But that's not fair!", life sometimes isn't fair and right now I am hearing alot of adults saying this very thing..."It's not fair!!"

When life throws us a curve, whether it is in our control or the control of someone else like our government ...we can either throw our hands up and say "How unfair!!" or we can decide to allow God to bring justice to the situation.

What kind of attitude do we put on when life is unfair to us?

Despair? It is so easy to let reality get us down and sometimes we just want to give up on life. I think the author of Ecclesiastes may have fallen into this category. What is unfortunate about choosing despair is that we lose out on so much of what life COULD be, all because we are too upset to see past our despair.

Cynicism? When our attitude becomes cynical, we simply go with the flow of life. Our life motto is "do unto others before they do unto me." This kind of attitude only isolates us from people, which really just makes our world even more unjust.

Realistic hope? An attitude of being realistic and having hope means that we realize that this world we live in will never be completely just, but by being part of this world and having the hope of Jesus Christ, we have the ability to bring love, joy, peace, trust, hope and some justice back into our world.

How do you react to the discouragement and injustices around you? It is my prayer that you will join me as I reflect on all that Christ has already done, not only in my personal life, but in the world all around me. His Word says that He will not leave us nor forsake us, so that means that just as He did not leave Noah alone or Moses or Abraham - He surely will not leave us alone in this unfair world that we live in. He is coming again and when He does, all injustices will be taken care of. The future is in the palm of His hand.

WEDNESDAY WEEKLY WORD is a weekly post where I reflect my thoughts on a personal book of study. This week, I studied the hope that He has promised that He is coming again and we have not yet seen all of the results of His work. It is my prayer that in your discouragements and injustices, that you will remember that there is coming a day when the record will be open and justice will be served.

YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL: Please take time to vote in this weeks poll...."When you make an entrance at a party or dinner...what are you most likely to do?" Remember your opinion really does matter!!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A PIECE OF MY HEART ...growing up

I have been spending alot of time lately with my 13 year old daughter. We have been talking alot about friendships, best friends, boys, dating, school and just your typical teenage girl "drama" things.
At such a young age, she has already experienced some heart ache and disappointment in her friendships.


None of us like it, but yet it is part of growing up. This past week we have talked, cried, hugged and laughed. How it hurts my heart as her mom to see her suffer at the hands of her peers. But, all of the trials and hard knocks of growing up brings lessons for all of us to learn.

None of us want to suffer, in fact, most of us will go to long lengths to avoid pain. But suffering should not surprise any of us. Scripture tells us that we should expect trials, tribulations and suffering not just once but over and over.

When these sufferings and pain come, our Heavenly Father is just waiting for us to come and bear it all to Him. To unload our pain and allow Him to wrap His loving arms around us, as I have done with my daughter, and say "It is going to be alright!"

EPHESIANS 3:17 "Christ will make His home in your hearts as you trust in Him. Your roots will grow down into God's love and keep you strong."

I have never felt closer to my daughter as I have these past few days as we poured our hearts out to each other. Our heavenly Father desires for us to pour our hearts out to Him in such a way. He craves to have this intimate time with us. His heart hurts when we suffer, but yet like a parent, He knows what is necessary for us to grow up (spiritually).

Do you see God's hand in your sufferings?
Are you putting your heart aches and pains in His trust?

Dear Lord, thank you for being my closest confident. In you, I can trust You! Help me, Lord, to respond to the sufferings in my life in a way that will become fertile ground for spiritual growth in my life. AMEN
and that is a piece of my heart today;

Monday, June 8, 2009


You can find me over at "THE WELL" homepage today as I lead today's discussion about "BEING OVERLOOKED".

Have you ever been overlooked? How did it make you feel?

"I am pretty sure that all of us have been overlooked sometime in our life.
As a child, the memory that comes to mind is when we were lined up in gym class
and the team captain had to pick his players for his side. How many of you were
picked last? Being overlooked ... many times leaves us feeling unworthy, unloved and unappreciated! You might say, ok Laurie ... that's kids stuff. And stuff like that happens in child play! But how would you react to be overlooked as an adult?..."

Read the remainder of this post HERE!

Friday, June 5, 2009



I have only been acquainted with Jennifer for a short time. Jennifer is a frequent visitor and participant of the AT THE WELL meme. It is amazing how so many of us gather each week over at the well and share how God is molding and making us to be Titus 2 women. Jennifer is one of those women that is pursuing Gods heart as passionately as she can.

Jennifer shares all kinds of great things with us on her blog. It won't take you long to see that Jennifer is passionate about her family, she often blogs about her experiences of homeschooling and (one of my favorites!) cooking. Jennifer is one of those "visual" writers ... she not only shares a good recipe but she shares a picture also that will leave you drooling at the mouth!

Another passion that will leap off of the web page ... is Jennifer's passion for Christ. I love it when she shares personal testimonies of Gods love and changing power! Just recently, Jennifer shared one of those very moving kind of stories with her readers, you know, the kind that just gives you goose bumps and the kind that makes you want to just do a holy roller shout! Here is what Jennifer shared recently about how we as Titus 2 women should dress (or not dress) ...

Who Are You Dressing For?

In the back of my mind, I kept hearing the Holy Spirit tell me that this was not the route I needed to go, that at the end of this road there would be death and destruction, but I blew that voice off. I wanted to look sexy!I did attract the attention of a certain man, who shall remain nameless. At first I was deeply flattered. Another man besides my husband thought I looked good.WOW! But then that flattery began to turn into thoughts. . . thoughts of being with someone other than my husband. This man would visit my office every day and sit and talk to me for hours. He emailed me regularly. He showed an interest. He even commented a few times about how sexy I had become in the few weeks.

After a couple of months of this, one morning when I was checking out my nice slim body in the mirror, my daughter walked in the room. Now remember.. this was 4 years ago. I was a Christian, a God fearing woman, who had blown off the convicting voice of the Holy Spirit. Kayla at the time was 7 years old. She stood there for a few moments and then she said, "Momma...why are you dressing like that?" I asked her, "Like what baby?" And she said, "Like that." and she pointed to my clothing. I looked in the mirror again still not seeing what she was talking about. And then she spoke again, but this time I did not hear her. I heard the Voice of My Savior speaking. She said, "Why are you dressing like that for work? Who are you trying to impress? Why do you want other men to look at you when you are already married? Daddy likes the way you look. No one else needs to like you that way mommy.

"SMACK! At that moment, I saw myself as the Lord saw me. I was ashamed, humiliated, and completely and utterly horrified that I had allowed myself to be pulled in that direction. I was so thankful that nothing had transpired with the man at work. I quickly changed clothes and bagged up everything I had purchased and threw them in the garbage! Mini skirts, tight tops, EVERYTHING and out it went.I went to work and emailed the man and told him that I could not talk to him anymore.

I quit my job within a month of this happening and took a different job which eventually led me to homeschooling my children.Now I am more aware of how I dress. Here lately I have been the sneakers and jeans kinds of girl, but slowly God is showing me just how feminine I am and that I can be girly and beautiful and modest all at the same time. As women, we have to be careful of what we wear. If we are wearing it so other people will notice us, we are wearing it for the wrong reasons! You have to dress for yourself and not to draw the attention of others.

If you find yourself doing that, then I suggest you spend some time in prayer asking God to reveal to you what your true motives are.If you have caused someone to fail because of the way you dress, then go ask forgiveness of that person.

Also ask God to forgive you and then CHANGE!I still look back at this time as a way of God opening my eyes to the problems of dress and why in His word He talks about all the reasons why He wants us to dress modestly. When the Holy Spirit is speaking to you, listen to His voice, heed His warnings and do what He is asking you to do. It is for your good.

I was so glad to see Jennifer write about this topic. I see so many women who struggle in this area, many of whom are not even aware that they are purposely dressing for another mans eye. I applaud Jennifer for her honesty and her openness to share her testimony of Gods love and changing power.
Recently, Jennifer shared alittle bit more about herself with me online. Please join me as we get to know alittle piece of Jennifer's heart...

My name is Jennifer Sikora. You can find my blog, For Such a Time as This, at http://www.belikeesther.blogspot.com/

I have been blogging since October 2007. I started as a way to share my homeschooling journey and all the things we were learning, but it has turned into so much more since then. Now I share about life, faith, homeschooling, and Jesus!

Anything that we do. Homeschooling, devotions that I write, wonderful homemade recipes that I try, and our family life in general.

4. TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF...if you work ~where? ...have a family ~ tell us about them?
I am 34 years old. I work for The Old Schoolhouse Magazine as Social Marketing Assistant. I have been married to my husband for 15 years. We have two wonderful children, Robert age 14, and Kayla age 11. We have three rotten little spoiled dogs, Ruffles the Corgi, Puff the Poodle, and Tucker the Chihuahua

I have been serving the Lord now for 10 years! It seems like only yesterday that He called my name and asked me to be part of His Kingdom!

For the last few months, my husband has been out of work. We made a promise to God that if He would help take care of us like He promised in His word that we would be faithful to Him in following Him and not give up even when it gets hard. My husband is still unemployed, but there has not been a day that goes by that God has not provided for our needs. I believe that comes from the fact that we are following Him regardless, not only in the easy times, but in the hard times as well.

My favorite scripture has always been and will always be Romans 8:28: "All things work together for the good of those who love Him, who are the called, according to His purpose."

With my husband being out of a job, I have to know that this is for our good. It is growing character in both of us and teaching us to be patient and wait on God.

Blog about everything. What you think is uninteresting, can be the most interesting thing to all those bloggy friends of yours!

Great advice Jennifer! You never know who you might meet while blogging and how much you can become connected with them not only thru similar interests but thru a kindred spirit. Thank you Jennifer for being an encouragement to me and to all Women who Take a Stand! -LAURIE


WOULD YOU LIKE TO HAVE YOUR BLOG FEATURED HERE ON CIRCLE OF LOVE? I would love to feature you and your ministry of your blogpage. For more information on how you can be in an upcoming CIRCLE OF LOVE feature ... click HERE!