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Showing posts from January, 2018

Forty-Five Verses: Closing January

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"By day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life."
Psalm 42:8


January....it's been fabulous... Thank you Lord for a blessed month of snow,  new beginnings, second chances, breakthroughs,  new routines, order, rest, productivity, amazing surprises,  another cancerversary in the books,   and your unconditional love throughout every single day.  Let me never forget, every day is blessing. Amen. 
Day 47 Today's verse:  "Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it."  Hebrews 13:2 Blessings, Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: Overloaded

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You could have never told me that doing a load of laundry every day for a week would make such a difference. Yes, I am serious. The key is doing the load, folding it and putting it all away each day.  This way you are not spending all day Saturday and Sunday doing laundry (which I was at times). Or having a mountain of laundry on the guest bedroom bed that caused heart palpitations every time I passed (twenty-five times). And my laundry journey was going so smoothly....I was staying on top of it.... until Friday. And Saturday. And Sunday. Oh no, what happened? Way behind. Then it hit me, that the feeling I had was actually quite normal because I have lived with it so long. Stress. Not simplified and orderly like last week, but messy and stressful. I decided to make that one change for a couple of weeks and just see how it went. Voila! I got off track, but that washing machine  has been rocking since I got home this afternoon...gotta get back on track! This is yet another wonderful ti…

Forty-Five Verses: Where Would He Find Me?

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Forty-Five Verses: Big Announcement

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After a twenty-one day fast, and writing every day for forty-four days... almost to conclude our forty-five verses together, the Lord has laid something on my heart.
KEEP GOING!
KEEP REPEATING THE FORTY--FIVE VERSES WITH A POST THIS YEAR... 2018! So, here we go!
Day 44/45 Today's Verse... "He himself bore our sins" in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; "by HIS wounds you have been healed." 1 Peter 2:24
Blessings, Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: In the Midst

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Grateful that God  is giving us forty-five verses in 2018 to memorize and sow into our hearts. 
Thankful that God has surrounded me with so much love and joy.
Blessed to be moving forward.
Day 43/45 Today's Verse...  "For where two or three are gathered together in my name,  there am I in the midst of them." Matthew 18:20
Blessings, Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: Nine Years Cancer Free

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It was January 26, 2009. I had just walked back in the door from dropping off my third grader and kindergartner at the elementary school. I walked straight in the door and stopped quickly and stood still. Out of my mouth....very loudly...I said....
 "Beeee Stillll and KNOW that I am God!" I stood there silent. As if waiting on God to respond. Nothing. Silence. Yet still. A few seconds later (felt like hours) the very same scenario...Out of my mouth....very loudly...I said...."Beeee Stillll and KNOW that I am God!" Only louder this time as if God did not hear me. Still nothing. Yes, it was strange, nothing like that had ever happened. Just me and God.  I stood there. Waiting. And then as if sitting across the table from a friend, I said in a soft tone "I am still...and I KNOW that YOU are God." No sooner than I said it, the phone rang. You know those things we used to have hanging on our walls? The landline telephone?  It rang and it startled me. I walked…

Forty-Five Verses: All Smiles

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There were blue skies and sunshine today! As I traveled out of town for a work day trip I found myself pulling over to take a picture of this gigantic white cross that I have passed so many times. It was like a full circle moment a day before my nine year cancerversary...smile! I listened to podcasts on the way, just basking in messages about the hope of God. Normally, I use traveling as talk time, catching up on work calls and although I had a few brief conversations, I mainly just listened. Beheld. Prayed. Worshipped. PRAISED. That is a big one. Praise!

I was in a high-rise physician building at the elevator and I heard a lady say "Chemo is not immediate". I then glanced at the directory and saw ONCOLOGY in big letters. She and I were waiting on the elevator and I said "I thought I heard you say the "C" word, I have had it and tomorrow I am nine years cancer free." It just kinda popped out..haha. She gave me the biggest smile, obviously from the looks …

Forty-Five Verses: Choose

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I have had many a day with hard choices but this one not so much.. Day 40/45 Today's verse.... "Choose today who you will serve." Joshua 24:15
As for me and my house... we will serve the Lord.  We will praise Him. We will love Him. All the days of our life. We will lift up the Name of Jesus. Amen
Blessings,  Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: There's a Possibility

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I stood in the room after my exam and some friendly chit chat that came to a halt when the surgeon looked me in the eye and said "You know, there's a possibility this is cancer." My knee jerk reaction back to him was "Well, there is a possibility it is not too." For the past week I had some uncertainty that the lump may be malignant but I was holding out with the words I said over and over the night I found it. "Surely it's nothing, surely it's nothing, surely it's nothing." I just remember I barely slept that night. I had a child sleeping on each side of me, Jeff was working late. I prayed. I thought through scenarios and I woke early to tell Jeff. How in the world had I missed a lump that big? I had a mammogram, and was even given a hard time by the insurance company  because I was only thirty-five years old...only six months before? Surely it is nothing.

I called Deborah who was already scheduled with three others to come sit at the ki…

Forty-Five Verses: Unanswered Prayers

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Do you remember the song by Garth Brooks "Unanswered Prayers"? It is a song about a relationship but the lyrics "Some of God's greatest gifts are unanswered prayers"...that can pretty much sum up any area of life where we see God's sovereignty outweighing our instant need for happiness. Some of my prayers, okay, alot of my prayers over the years, have been to remove me from painful situations. Just get me out, Lord. It's a pretty little "good christian girl "way of asking for permission from God to avoid anything that may hurt or hurt someone else. Avoidance. And it does not work, by the way. It only puts off the inevitable. It produces more stress, anxiety and worry. Until the Lord began to bring deliverance from this avoidance issue in my life.....via a heavy dose of conflict resolution topped with some not so comfortable boldness...I would just  pray that God would "take it away" or even worse make the excuse that I would deal wi…

Forty-Five Verses:Unknown Territory

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When God leads you to a new season, there is always the unknowns, the uncertainties, the unveiling, the unraveling, even the unnerving tendencies that tend to question our human minds. Am I living up to the potential that He purposed me to do for the Kingdom? Am I using the skills and talents He gave me to the best of my ability? Am I putting forth one hundred percent? Am I going the extra mile and putting others needs above my own? Am I truly listening for guidance and direction from God throughout the day? How can I make small changes toward my long and short term goals? 
All these questions have been swirling around in my head lately and finally made it to the page. As I have continued to work through the house, I am using the same process to declutter my mind. (yes I realize that may be a lengthy and quite complicated process..haha). Just as I have been working toward simplifying our morning routine and maintaining order, I have begun writing down almost every single thing that I…

Forty-Five Verses: Rise

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Day 36/45 Today's verse...
"By His power God raised the Lord from the dead, and He will raise us also."  1 Corinthians 6:14
Blessings,  Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: Love

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The four letter word, the thread written across our heart because God is within us....LOVE. This word is more of a verb than a noun because it calls for action. The word that isn't to be taken lightly and is surely to be music to the ears. It is patient and kind (1 Corinthians13:4-8). Love is a gift. Give it freely. Share it daily. Receive it and treasure it. Remember, perfect love casts out fear. 1 John 4:18. Sending love your way today! Thanks for stopping by and enjoy your weekend!

Day 35/45 Today's Verse...
"My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you." John 15:12

Blessings,
Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: When The Glass Shatters

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The lid to the coffee canister somehow fell off while I was getting it out of the cabinet...and shattered into a hundred tiny pieces of glass on the counter. The canister used to house my flour until I came to the honest conclusion with myself that clearly I don't bake much and thus don't need flour and sugar displayed (aka taking up space) on my counter! And I just decided to put the coffee up in the cabinet yesterday. Not gonna work. So I clean up the mess, go ahead and fix my coffee pot for tomorrow and put the coffee back up in the cabinet without a lid. In the meantime, I remember a cute jar with a chalkboard sticker on the front that I had just put in the attic. Hmmm, Nothing would do until I had the coffee safely put in it's new container. And while I was at it, I added a mug organizer to the cabinet. I had it shoved on the bottom shelf of my pantry and had put it in the attic as well. See,  I had followed the directions in Emily Ley's book, The Simplified Life…

Forty-Five Verses: Fresh Flowers

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Fresh flowers and candles on the counter, they soothe me. I decided to try my best to have fresh flowers on the island each week (or so) this year. So far so good. Trader Joe's is one of  my favorite places to pick up a bouquet, the flowers seem so "happy" in there..,smile! I think I unintentionally went for a spring ensemble today since it's so cold...brrrrr! It's truly the little things that reach the soul and tenderly bring joy just by being present. There is no such substitute for being present.

For to be present is to be love. To be present is to not only to give light but to be light. To be present is being, even doing and never to be substituted with words that don't last longer than grocery store flowers.  To be present is a gift for both the giver and the receiver. To be present is what God is in us. To be present is a two way street lined with signs of understanding and mutual respect. To be present can require sacrifice but always yields reward. T…

Forty-Five Verses: Snowflakes

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As a little girl I always loved cutting out snowflakes and especially loved that not one of them ever turned out alike. Snow is always so beautiful yet, even still, I have never seen the intricate detail of the snowflakes that we captured today on our deck. The picture of them on ice could in no way show their true beauty! Before long these sweet little snowflakes that were all different and piled up, covered the ground in white. Well, okay, maybe not completely covered the ground this time...lightly dusted...smile! It was another snow day here in Alabama, we waited all day for this "light dusting."

Makes me think about how God has made each of so differently, every intricate detail. Regardless of how we view ourselves or others view us, He tells us we are fearfully and wonderfully made.  We are made in His image to be who He called us to be.  In school, in a job, at church you are surrounded by many "snowflakes" of people who make up any given season of life. As …

Forty-Five Verses: Love in Action

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"Darkness cannot drive out darkness.  Only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate. Only love can do that."    -Martin Luther King Jr
"To serve you only need a heart  full of grace and a soul generated by love." -Martin Luther King Jr
"Love is the only force capable  of transforming an enemy into a friend."                                -Martin Luther King Jr
"In the end, we will remember not the words  of our enemies, but the silence of our friends." -Martin Luther King Jr
Day 31/45 Today's verse... "Love your neighbor as yourself." Leviticus 19:18
Blessings, Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: Chilly Weather, Hot Soup

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Since it's twenty-eight degrees and below here in Alabama, I wanted to make something for dinner to warm us up!Easy Potato Soup came to mind and I had all the ingredients here, even better... I savor a day that I don't have to get in the car!. I have wanted to break out the new Instant Pot all week but never did. I have a confession.... I don't adapt to change easily. I can't tell you how many times I thought to myself "just use the crockpot, or just make this on the stove, you know how do to it that way." Can you say comfort zone? Ugggh. I did not want to try something new, even if it meant it would make things easier, even if it meant faster...in an instant..lol!!! The day buzzed by with my simplified life quest.. decluttering and sorting, but I was struggling.... with making the soup...in the instant pot?

The battle was surely in my mind. It was getting late and we had all eaten leftover lasagna at different times anyway so I had almost talked myself out …

Forty-Five Verses: Happy Saturday

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Day 29/45 Today's verse...

"Show me your ways, O Lord, Teach me your paths; Guide me in your truth and teach me. For you are God my Savior, And my Hope is in you all day long." Psalm 25:4-5

Blessings,
Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: Simple

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This cold weekend in the south is going to be spent reading the beautiful book "A Simplified Life" by Emily Ley. It's more of an interactional book that I picked up last weekend when getting Luke's required reading book...I felt I needed an assignment as well, or maybe accountability is a better word. I wish I could just read every waking minute of it, but will try and put into practice some of the ideas in the book. First step is decluttering. Before you organize, before you clean. On it...ready to fill some garbage bags!

What about you? What do you have filling your time this weekend? I pray it's one of rest, joy, prayer, seeking the Lord and making memories. More on my simplicity journey tomorrow! Short and sweet today. Simple..smile.


Day 28/45 Today's verse...
 "Cling to what is good." Romans 12:9
Blessings,
Suzanne




Forty-Five Verses: For the Birds

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Sunday mornings are my favorite day of the week. They are less rushed, a time of preparation for corporate worship and for a new week. I mean, my cup of coffee even tastes better on Sunday..haha..just kidding. But I savor it. I never set an alarm but always seem to pop up at my normal wake time. 5:00 am. Sharp. Like clock work.

Lately I have enjoyed time out on the deck, writing in the fresh air, before all the morning rush of "Sunday church traffic" starts. I stepped back inside to warm my coffee up for the umpteenth time because you know, I have twelve yeti stainless cups but I just love the feel of my coffee in a ceramic mug with just the right holder. It's the little things. Or OCD one. I love to stand and look out the kitchen window at all the different birds congregating at the bird feeder. They looked like they were sharing. It's a big feeder, there's enough to go around. There were two doves, a lady cardinal and a few others joined. There was a chipmunk …

Forty-Five Verses: One by One

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Twenty-Six of Forty-Five Verses...are you memorizing yet? Have you written them down?  It was good for me to list them out and review His promises one by one. I have mine on index cards and they travel most days:)))

1. "For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever." Romans 11:36

2. "Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it." Hebrews 13:2

3. "For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you "do not fear, I will help you." Isaiah 41:3

4. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows."  James 1:17

5. "Sow righteousness for yourselves; and reap faithful love:Break up your unplowed ground. 
It is time to seek the Lord until He comes and sends righteousness on you like the rain."  Hosea 10:12
6. "For to us…

Forty-Five Verses: Old Rugged Cross

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This rugged piece of art hangs beside my bed and has a story. We all have a story (or two or three) don't we? I bought it from a vendor who sells tin pieces at a weekend market. She said the board it’s on came from their old barn and they crafted the tin cross to overlay. It has a rusted hanger, chipped paint, is on uneven wood, imperfect in every way and I simply love it! I am really focusing on surrounding myself with the things that have meaning, that bring me joy  and doing some major decluttering of things just taking up space. I am committed to sticking with it as long as it takes this year. I worked on a drawer a day in the kitchen last week and threw out all kinds of stuff ! I always say "my house looks straight but please don't open a drawer or a closet!" Smile...

Just like my little piece of wood art, I have a story. An imperfect person, that loves and adores a perfect God. Perfectionism is such a hindrance to living the life God planned for us. I struggle…

Forty-Five Verses: Give me SPACE

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Day after day, as I prayed very specifically last year, God kept bringing me back to the word "space."  Space was needed in my life. Empty space. Full space. Open Space. Space with others. Space expanded.  Space to just be. Space to dream again. Space to sort out and sort through. Space makes room for new things, experiences not so much material possessions. When I began to step back and give space, I noticed a peace....calmness.  I went to the Lord and prayed way more than "venting" thus rehashing the same scenarios over and over. How freeing. Space gave me inspiration and it gave me energy. I am careful to keep space in my life. There are so many benefits to keeping it sacred.
I used this acronym to help me focus on what was important...

S- Space P- Provides A C- Calming E- Effect
And this year I am adding a little more to it...decluttered space. (will update on that one, process!) Memorable space. Quality Space. Fearless Space. Orderly Space. Organized Space. B…

Forty-Five Verses: Keep Me There

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Direct our Steps. Keep us on the altar.  Purify and cleanse us. Give us the mind of Christ. 2018 is truly a happy new year! Your love, grace and mercy are endless , Lord... Amen.

Day 23/45.. Today's verse....
 " A man's mind plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps." Proverbs 16:9

Blessings,
Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: Taught Well

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There are people that come and go in your life, and then there are some, that stick close and they teach you along the way. Always pointing you to the ways of God. Always there when you need them and many times call before you do, because they just know something is going on. Always get the prayer request, pray, then follow up for the praise report. Consistent.  Always giving insight and understanding on your personal relationship with Jesus. Never compromising the truth. Seeing joy in all circumstances and living it out. That the Lord would give me such a gift in these two people for over fifteen years now...no words can describe my love and respect for them and their ministry, Jesus Christ the Better Way.

You really never know what God has planned when He puts you places. Deborah and I worked together in a nursing home years ago and here we are! She and Cliff have taught this girl a whole lot about spiritual warfare, discernment and deliverance.... I didn't have a clue. And pra…

Forty-Five Verses: Prepared

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As someone who is always looking for a better way to do things....guess what the mailman brought us today??? The Instant Pot. Jeff tried to find it for Christmas but it was sold out. He has been on the hunt since then and it finally arrived today. I use the crockpot once if not twice a week so this is so exciting. I have tried to up my game with cooking dinner each night. It's usually healthier and definitely less expensive. Meal planning was on my new year solutions, remember? Luckily, Jeff already has a recipe ready for tomorrow and I will be on pinterest looking for ideas! If you have any good ones please let me know...smile!

Meal planning for me is more about being intentional about preparation. Once it is done, it is so freeing. How much better do you feel when you are prepared? So I am moving forward on the plan. Forward. Straight ahead. Feeding the crew. Trying our best to make healthy choices. And trying new foods. So, here's to the instant pot...update soon!

Preparat…

Forty-Five Verses: Peaceful Waters

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When God calls you to step out in faith, take that first step. Get off the shore. Always listening for instruction (Psalm 32:8) and walking out to meet Jesus as Peter did (Matthew 14:22-33) in obedience. There is much He has just waiting on our obedience. Trust and Obey! Let this be the year without fear. Amen.


Day 20/45 Today's verse is....

"I will heal my people and will let them enjoy abundant peace and security." Jeremiah 33:6

Blessings, Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: My Tree and I

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I started taking the beautiful gold decorations of my Christmas tree and quickly realized it was so dry the needles hurt to touch. As each ornament, then ribbon and then glittery birds and branches and such... came off... so did the needles. Ouch! Not just dry, dead.  I gave the poor thing my best southern "bless your heart." There really was no amount of water that could truly revive it. It has served us well for well over a month and was the prettiest tree yet. The lights were a whole other ordeal...I was tempted to leave them on and trash them with the tree. Then I remembered we just bought them this year, not wise! And now that I think about it..wonder if that is what happened last year since I could not find light one when I got out the decorations? I basically wrestled with a dead, very prickly, Christmas tree trying to get those lights off. They sure were magical all lit up and sparkling on an "alive", green tree. So it was worth it. We just had a time disa…

Forty-Five Verses: Follow Me

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I stopped in my tracks..literally..on a walk one day and took this picture. A white cross right there on the street and really loved the leaf that looked like it had been placed right beside it. It's just the reminder we need on this second day of January...deny yourself, take up your cross and follow me!

Day 18/45 Today's Verse...

"Then Jesus said to his disciples, "Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me." Matthew 16:24

If you are "following" anyone..let it be Him. Let it be Jesus.

Blessings,
Suzanne

Forty-Five Verses: FORWARD IN 2018

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Happy New Year..welcome 2018!!I am bringing my song of Joy on into this year. Some years I have been so ready to shut the door on a year and truly have a "do over" the next year, this was not that year (thank the Lord Jesus). Yes, like any other year it had ups and downs, but overall I would say 2017 goes in the books for a good year! I chose the word "FORWARD" to literally push me through this year, enjoying and embracing all that it has to offer.

When we are moving forward there is no constant looking back. There's no stopping. Maybe a little rest here and there but not complete stops. There is a destination. There is a goal in sight. There is the present moment. There is the best guide along the journey you could ever ask for...his name is Jesus. I dare not ever take the steps forward without having my armor on, my eyes fixed on Him and prayer throughout my waking hours. It is exciting to think about going forward. As Galatians 2:20 says "I have been c…