HOPE*ann*FAITH

Learning to Live , Again, On Purpose.


6 Comments

He Gave … He Came …


He Gave ... He Came ... John 3:16-17

He Gave …
He Came …
John 3:16-17

Give … ’tis The Season.

The Greatest Gift of All.

Christmas … a season of giving. I want to tell you a story. So get that cup of tea {or coffee.}, settle in comfortably.

Are you comfortably? Ready? Let’s begin … =)

God gave us, His children, the best gift we will ever receive. He gave us this gift because He loved us so much He sought to reconcile each and everyone of us to Himself.

This is not my story. I copied the biblical version from Biblegateway.com; because I felt it needed to be told correctly. This story is so very important to humanity and it’s been told and retold countless times that I didn’t want to diminish it with my “version”.

I give to you the story of Father’ giving to us, all.

For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” Luke 2:11-14

Christ’s Birth Announced to Mary

Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. And having come in, the angel said to her, “Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women!”

But when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and considered what manner of greeting this was. Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JesusHe will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”

Then Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I do not know a man?”And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God.  Now indeed, Elizabeth your relative has also conceived a son in her old age; and this is now the sixth month for her who was called barren.  For with God nothing will be impossible.”

Then Mary said, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.

Mary, then went to visit her cousin Elizabeth who was also pregnant. They rejoiced in their visit and the magnitude of Mary’s pregnancy. Even, Elizabeth’s child (John, the Baptist) rejoice within the womb.

The Song of Mary

 And Mary sang:

“My soul magnifies the Lord,
And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior.
For He has regarded the lowly state of His maidservant;
For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed.
For He who is mighty has done great things for me,
And holy is His name.
And His mercy is on those who fear Him
From generation to generation.
He has shown strength with His arm;
He has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
He has put down the mighty from their thrones,
And exalted the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
And the rich He has sent away empty.
He has helped His servant Israel,
In remembrance of His mercy,
As He spoke to our fathers,
To Abraham and to his seed forever.”

And Mary remained with Elizabeth about three months, and returned to her house.

Christ Born of Mary

And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria. So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city.

Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife,who was with child. So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

Glory in the Highest

Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.  And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, “Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us.”  And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger.  Now when they had seen Him, they made widely known the saying which was told them concerning this Child.  And all those who heard it marveled at those things which were told them by the shepherds.  But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart.  Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told them.

Today, I give you the true story of Christmas. The truth of the season and why we give one another gifts each year at this time. Some would say we are not celebrating Christ’s true birth date, but let me submit to you that it hardly matters to God, the Father or to Jesus, His Only Son, when we celebrate Jesus. It only matters that we celebrate Him and what He did for us …

So this year, I choose to give JOY … Give Joy

The very thing we need here in the earth. The very thing we need here in Hutchland.

JOY TO THE WORLD! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to ALL!

Thanks for reading my dear friends and God Bless You.

ASignature


6 Comments

How God Assures Me He’s On It :: A Much Needed Sunday Healing


Sweet, Sad Eyed Boy

Sweet, Sad Eyed Boy

This is my sweet boy. My youngest. My sad little guy. And OH how he had reason for that sweet, sad look. And OH how I sometimes, still, ache for my blindness.

The Man

The Man

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is the man… angry and battling his demons. Very scary demons. And OH how I dreamed of reaching that sweet boy who was hidden in that angry man. I was incapable of reaching into him, to the boy. He wouldn’t let me. I wasn’t, still am not allowed to even hug him. It’s truly heartbreaking for me. And I’m sure his heart is broken. But He battles daily with his illness, his addiction. Heroin. And even when he stumbles, slips and falls flat out; he gets back up to battle. He’s superman in his head. He still thinks he needs to be I think. Because, I couldn’t protect him, because he couldn’t tell me … until they did, when they were barely in grade school … and the man (teen) you see above hid the sweet boy. Seemingly forever.

He fell this week. Wasn’t able to recover from an apparent stumble and now he starts over again. And my heart is broken watching him be sick. Very sick as he starts to stand back up to this illness, this craving, whose whole intent is to kill that sweet boy he has hidden in his heart.

Shane light editThis is him at the beginning of the last run of sobriety. Tired but strong. He’ll be there again.

And I know this because God and I met in worship this morning at church. I started the day very worried about my sweet boy, who hasn’t been so sweet these last few days. He was sick and in pain and irritable. I mean who wouldn’t be when they felt sick; I certainly am not fun when I am ill. But this is different.

There’s nothing I can do. And if I do something I am jeopardizing his life by enabling him. He has to walk out the withdrawl himself. He has to want to feel better. He has to choose between sobriety  and oblivion.

Unlike the cancer his father battles, the boy chose his illness. Chose oblivion over the demons of something he had no say in and I had no knowledge of. The demons who continue to tell him it was his fault. The demons that tell him I should have known. The demons who tell him he’s superman and he can live through the dangerous choices. The demons who tell him no one loves him because he’s unlovable now. This monster heroin quiets the demons I imagine. But then they begin to rustle again and bite … I cannot fathom the pain, though I experience his pain and suffering while he battles the withdrawl and fights for the breath of air that sobriety brings him.

As I sang praises to God today. As I worshiped the Father that promises to heal us. I cried out and from the depth of this mother’s heart and soul I sought my God’s assistance for my sweet boy. And God assured me that with that relinquishing, once again, of my boy to His care, that the boy, the man, would be healed.

During this song, as the lead singer of our worship band and assistance pastor sang this favorite, God met me in my aching for my sweet boy. I quieted and prayed for him and for The Hubs and was assured that He had them, that their healings were imminent, promised. And I quieted into the precious peace of the music, in Father’s presence.

You see, I’ve realized that the enemy has put a hit out on this family. Two of my men are battling grave illnesses, and the boy does not know the promises we believe! So I, WE, as a family must believe for him. He does not know that heroin addiction cannot kill him, as his father knows the cancer cannot kill him, though we tell him.

The boy does not know, as the father does, that because we believe, he is saved from his illnesses and cleansed of his sins, sins that are not even his own, but believes to be. The boy doesn’t believe that Jesus loved him so much that he took the heroin needle for him to the cross and died there with that illness upon Him! So we must believe and pray until the boy understands his worth to the Father.

And what mother, father and brother wouldn’t do this for a boy, for a man?

Oh how I wish the boy believed that he would live. Oh how I wish the boy believed he is loved beyond his mother’s ability to put it in words. Oh how I wish he knew the joy I get when he is well and smiles and is a participating member of this family. A participating member in his own life.

So I leave this post as another prayer to God. It holds no scripture, only a song of worship and praise to our Father God expressing my love and honor to him. I leave it as proof that I acknowledge His response to my need, my boy’s need, this morning. And I thank him again and again, without end that my sweet boy is starting to feel better and is two or three (I’m not sure) days back on the road of sobriety.

To every parent of a child who battles the illness of addiction, or any illness for that matter, I sing this song for you and your child. I pray that God vanquish this demon and send it to hell from whence it came, and I put the enemy and heroin under the feet of Jesus.

We are healed. Our children are healed. Our land is healed. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Thanks for listening to this outpouring of a mother’s heart.

ASignature

The sweet boy’s mom. =)


Leave a comment

Rest & Relaxation | 31Days:11


“Ah! There is nothing like staying at home, for real comfort.”
― Jane Austen

We hung out at home today! I love that!

Content

Content

“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives, do I give to you.  Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.” 

John 14:27

Rest is needed to heal and restore oneself. Now while it is HARD to get The Hubs to rest; EVER, we had a down day today. It’s hard for him to sit and relax, he was an always on the go kind of guy. He would create things to do just to stay busy. Now, after better than a year of fighting cancer with chemotherapy and radiation, his body just doesn’t let him do what he had planned or wants to do. His body requires him to rest; kind of like the rest of us. =)

 

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with  thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which  surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ  Jesus.”

Philippians 4:6-7

 

We hung out and watched our favorite Saturday morning shows; Lucky Dog and Dr. Chris Pet Vet and had a late breakfast. The boy was home and around too. We then watched two comedies and The Hubs laughed at all the 12 year old humor with the boy, as I was watched like the mother of men children! It was peaceful and nice. It was wonderful to hear that laugh.

The Hubs laugh is truly my favorite sound in the world; it’s so warm and honest in all it’s joy! ♥

 

“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives, do I give to you.  Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.”

John 14:27

 

For us here in Hutchland quiet Saturdays are a healing time. We hang out in an atmosphere of stress-less love and contentedness. Even if The Hubs is a bit frustrated I can usually find a way to ease his fidgeting. Today it was raining, so it was easier for him to hang out and relax. Rain limits his outside projects.

So it was Dachshunds, movies and tea … Waffles and syrup with coffee, movies, a short drive to Dad’s to feed Invisakitty, while he’s at his camp; and a late dinner.

Never underestimate what rest and relaxation can mean for a healing body … what laughter and quiet contentedness can do for aches and pains … what the love of family can do for times of pent up energy and frustration. Or even times when you need the energy to feel normal and alive, but it isn’t coming.

 

 “Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.”

1 Peter 3:4

 “But I have calmed and quieted myself, I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content.”

Psalm 131:2

I do so hope you take the time for rest and relaxation in your week. Time with someone(s) special. Time to just sit back and be contented in the peaceful comfort of just being.

How do you relax and refuel?

Sometimes I just sit quietly in the presence of God and allow Him to fill me with His peace and love. That, my friends, is the best. The VERY best. That is true serenity.

“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives, do I give to you.  Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.” John 14:27

Blessings to you and thanks so much for reading.

Andrea

Andrea

31 days of Five Minute Free Writes

31 days of Five Minute Free Writes

31 Days!

31 Days!

31 Days Journey to Healing

31 Days Journey to Healing


Leave a comment

Expecting Everyday Miracles: Beginning Something New


Morning

Morning

I wrote the fifth post for this 31 day challenge basically on the stroke of midnight last night. I really didn’t think I’d rise and be ready to write the sixth. But God ….

He speaks to me, audibly, as well as through … His Word, Devotions and Others … even Others who are not believers. The Word does convey that He will use anyone and any situation to His good will.

So today’s five minutes came in a scripture devotion this morning.

The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes. – Psalm 19:8

 

Today we go to the oncologist and get the report from the last CAT scan. I already know The Hubs’ intentions to quit all treatment. My eyes are open, but I am surprised that I am calm and have a joyful heart.

It feels as though we are starting something new today!

And that has me feeling expectant and a bit excited. Not a normal response to the “somethings new” in my life, for me. Yet here I am … feeling as though we are truly done with this cancer trial. And I’m ok with that. I don’t feel apprehensive or frightened.

Maybe it’s that The Hubs has tempered me with his consistent, if not always soothing, reminders that he is done with chemo.

(as I once again remind myself that chemo is not medicine; it’s poison.)

He is done with chemo. He is done feeling trapped by a disease that our faith in God assures us cannot live within him. He is done feeling tired and worn out and old. And he is tired of having no hair.

So I’m going into this day with that joyful heart and open eyes knowing that God goes before us and makes a way in this fallen world, that accepts illness and death from sickness as a norm.

KNOWING that I know that God is about to glorify Himself through a miraculous healing.

YOU see, I believe that we should not be surprised by God’s healing of our illnesses and disease. WE shouldn’t see it as a miracle; in the way the world sees His miracles.

Because the world defines a miracle as an unexpected and an unexplained phenomenon, and it is not.

God’s miracle of healing and of prosperity and of protection, and so many other things are most assuredly explained! And what’s more God’s miracles SHOULD be expected.

All anyone need do. to begin to expect God’s miracles. is to read THE BOOK.

Miracles are an everyday occurrence in the life of the believer who walks in his faith daily. That is not to diminish the wonder of God’s work … I continue to stand in awe daily of God’s amazing work! God’s miracles are amazing, EVERYDAY!

I find God’s daily miracles as amazing as the next man, as much as the non-believer is amazed, or more.

Why?

Because though I’ve come to expect God’s miracles; like my waking and breathing each morning, a miracle is a miracle! I just have the assurance of daily miracles. It’s as amazing as if you received a beautiful gift each morning wrapped in light and gentle breezes, just for your joy.

Like a beautiful fall morning.

Autumn Morning

Autumn Morning

Because even though as a believer I’ve come to expect God daily. I continue to be excited even as I expect Him to amaze me, and He does EVERYDAY!

Expectation does not drain the wonder for seeing God’s hand move in this life. Expectancy simply magnifies the Everyday Miracles!

So today we begin something new here in Hutchland … We move forward EXPECTING His miracle … I can’t wait to see and experience what that might be.

Thanks for reading!

Andrea

Andrea

 

 

31 Days: A Journey to Healing

31 Days: A Journey to Healing

 

 

31 days of Five Minute Free Writes

31 days of Five Minute Free Writes


8 Comments

Life and Conduct and Taking Responsibility


Life and Conduct: Taking responsibility for our lives, our selves and our circumstances.

Proverbs 23: 1-3 (NASB)

On Life and Conduct

1 When you sit down to dine [with a ruler], Consider carefully what is before you, 2 And put a knife to your throat If you are a man of great appetite. 3 Do not desire [his] delicacies, For it is deceptive food.

Welcome to Few Words Thursday, it’s been a while! I have no good reason for not being here; the best reason is apathy. Apathy, just another subject of life and conduct and responsibility. But I digress; apathy is for another day!

Today I want to discuss the struggle with obesity. Obesity is a national epidemic here in the USA, as we know. However, we’ve spent a lifetime ignoring it as a weakness or a disability. Some people are simply genetically predestined to be overweight, right? Well, maybe, but in the end the victory over obesity is won by sheer perseverance.

Biblically it is said that we are healed: Jeremiah 30:17 says, “For I will restore health unto you, and I will heal you of your wounds, saith the Lord.”

Many believe that the illness of obesity is caused by a wounding of the spirit. That words spoken abusively, intended or not, wounded the spirit of the overweight soul; or that physical abuse caused the spirit to be wounded. However obesity, whether genetic or emotional is killing many; it’s killing me. So what to do?

I have recently turned these issues in my life to the Word of God … and they are there. The starting scripture tells me to be aware of the food in front of me; that the “delicacies” are a lie.

They are! Think about it, many of us eat out of emotional turmoil: loneliness, feelings of worthlessness … that candy bar or that bowl (pan) of mac and cheese … I deserve those! One more won’t do any harm, right? And I’ll feel better [emotionally] afterward!

It’s an emotional addiction … an emotional crutch! And it’s killing many (me).

So what to do?

Me, I’m doing all I know to do when it come to the heart event. The lack of salt in my diet rendered a ravenous sweet tooth in me that I fight with ever fiber of my being. I think I’m doing well … I really do try … persevere. So in this apathy ( that has kept me house bound, with writer’s block and a feeling of worthlessness) I allowed myself to make some poor choices.

NOW, I’m done with that ! I want to go from this:

Apathetic

 

To This:

Joyful

 

Proverbs 15:29-30 (NIV) says:

“29The LORD is far from the wicked, but he hears the prayer of the righteous.

30 Light in a messenger’s eyes brings joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the bones.”

So in short … I must be self-controlled in my diet; conducting both my dietary and emotional life with diligence. I do this with the Word of God. I have found that direction for every area of ones life, for every area of concern or trial, the bible holds the foundational truth and the remedy to life and these areas and more.

So its full steam ahead. I will be discerning about what is on my plate, I will resist the lie of the delicacies for happiness and I will find joy and healing in the Word of God … applying such daily and in every circumstance.

Do you have an area of your life that you need to conduct differently or take responsibility for? Are you ready for the profound changes that God will make in your life if you allow Him access to these areas?

If so I would encourage you to do the easiest thing I know how to do … Google it, like I did. Simply write what I did (but according to your need) : What does the bible say about obesity? was my question to google … you will be amazed at the resources you find.

My advise from there is to check each resource, diligently, by the bible. Remember God promises us these things, but there is a part we must take responsibility for to receive the promises. Like the second scripture says; God hears the prayers of the righteous! But one must be righteous in the eyes of God for Him to hear your prayer … doing all you know to do in accordance with God’s Word insures that righteousness!

Do not be anxious about anything, Loves, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. As it says in Philippians 4:6

Blessings Loves, and thank you for joining me in FWTH! 🙂


Leave a comment

Rejoicing in the New Day … Day 15 in a Few Words


Rejoicing in the Sun

This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. ~ Psalm 118:24

Another gloomy-ish day today here at the Jersey Shore … yet, I awake with a determined attitude that this day will be pleasant … enjoyable and productive.

I must rely on God for this, for in myself I have a list, already, that could make this day none of those positive things.

Positive is my choice … I must choose my mood, my attitude, my outlook on life itself.

I determine how each day, each moment will go.

My Father Creator watches as I wake each day, and I know His hope is that I would rejoice in this new day. His heart is that I realize that yesterday is gone into the sea of forgetfulness and that I take the opportunity in this New Day … His new mercies.

Mercies … His mercies are new each day. He begins my day with me extending favor and compassion, for He knows the world I [we are] am about to encounter holds no mercies for His children.

Who am I that I choose to be negative … a breeder of resentment and discouragement? Even as this might be a reasonable response to lifes trials and tribulations it is a choice I must resist. I must rebuke that voice within me that tells me I am entitled to a day of mourning … a day to lie around and wallow in what I see as my miseries.

I hear His soft voice each morning … almost literally whispering what will the day hold, Love? I am here, let us forget the facts of yesterday’s history. My child look upon this day as an opportunity to Love and Live and Rejoice in life.

Being proactive doesn’t come naturally to me; it is a divine gift I accepted early in life, before I even chose this path. Some say I’m bubbly, others say I am vivacious … these always felt kinetic in me, almost a facade; but happy has always been my goal.

So today in my busyness I will take Father up on His offer of mercy and rejoicing.

I can do all things! Joy brings me the strength of the LORD … anything else belays the day; and I cannot afford that!

We only have today, Loves; come rejoice in today and be glad. 

How is your morning so far loves? How would you map the mood and attitude of the day? Come and rejoice with me … share your thoughts and choices with me … with us. You know, if you’ve visited before, that we journey, here, together … so that we may have joy in our travels!

Blessings Loves!


5 Comments

Testing … Testing … 123 … Testing {with a new linky tool!}


Good Thursday Morning Loves! ♥

Here at HOPEannFAITH we celebrate A Few Words…together.
A bit of thought and a little converstation…quick and to the point.
No real WORD COUNT applies…just say it as concisely as you can…make us think…inspire us to write.
Let My Words Be Few is a Writing Prompt.
It is a whispered prayer.
It is a kind word and a hand up…Thursday is for encouragement, friendship and love…so write with me. Make me ponder my life in reference to your perspective!
Once you have written your blog post…you can now link up with the linky below! Yea for me I figured it out!
We look forward to your joining us! Blessings Loves
♥ ♥ ♥

Perseverance …

 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:4

Why do we have trials? Trials are tests that God allows so that we will grow mature in Him.

Christians love the Scripture Jeremiah 29:11 …

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Yet when the trails roll in we forget that God has plans for us … we question, we doubt and then we make the dire mistake of attempting to handle the trials of this life on our own. I know I do … I completely forget there is a plan.

And YES! this is the plan … all of it …

Consider it pure joy whenever you face trials (the testing of your faith) of many kinds…because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. James 1:2-3 

Trial = A Testing of Faith = The Developement of Perseverance = Perseverence Developes Character = Character Builds Hope!

There are going to be trials in our lives, we know this. God allows trials (which are different from temptation, btw) so that we can be victorious.

My trials are a testing of my faith. The testing of my faith developes perseverance. And if God has allowed this test in my life then God has already given me the ability, and the tools, to pass this test.

I firmly believe that God has all the circumstances of my life in hand … todays trials and the tests to come tomorrow … and if I know that then I must … I MUST … I must believe without doubting.

Am I being tested in my life? My yes! I am! Then aren’t you too?

Does God have this? My yes! He does! And He has yours too!

So my friends I am going to consider these trials all joy, as I walk in the will of my God as best I can. And as I face these trials in this life of mine I am going to ask for the wisdom to handle the trials in the way God intended me to handle them.

He gives me no more than I can handle in this life! He knows what I (YOU) are going through right now.

I am perfect for that which God has called me.

The testing of my faith causes me to persevere and grow in maturity which grows to completeness in Christ.

What trials are you enduring today? Stop, if you will, and say this prayer with me …

Thank You Father God that you have given me all that I need to succeed in this circumstance in my life today. I humbly ask you now for the wisdom needed to come through this trial victoriously, glorifying the work that you do in me this day. Amen.

Blessings Loves ♥