My favorite thought

Rejoice in His name and not in your circumstances.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Amazing how God works!

We went to our Wednesday small group tonight and studying James 2:9-13 on how we judge others. We have all felt judged as well as we have judged others. It was a good message and really nice to see that we are not to put ourselves above others. We are to love all people as we love ourselves (Matthew 22:39). Jesus COMMANDED us to "Love each other as I have loved you" (John 15:12). 

We all have felt judged at one time or another by what we wear, drive, extra pounds we have, past mistakes... 

After small group, I had to go to Wal-mart and pick up some things that I ordered for work that came in. My hubby did not want to go but came because he does not like me going by myself after dark. So we were picking up the last of our few items before leaving and a couple stopped my husband and told my husband, "Hey! Jesus loves you!" and told him how God has changed him and his wife life by sharing them from 14 years of addiction, 3 years of homelessness, and saving them in prison. They gave God their lives and He took them how they were and changed their lives completely, now they are out sharing with others how God loves them and can make a difference in their lives. 

I was about 3 isles away and my hubby yells, "Honey, come over here". I came over and said hello and introduced myself. My husband told them I work for the local crisis center. I gave them my personal card and the center's client number. They said they would pass the word around. I should have asked for their name and number as well. 

This man showed no fear to go up to a stranger and say, "Hey, man! Jesus Loves You!" Reminded me that when God tells us to speak, we speak. If God tells us to do something we do it. What bravery! I know that we met them for a reason and that my card will get to someone in need. 

Praying for the Adams family! I'm looking forward to meeting y'all again. 

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Shalom Toda Raba PART IIII

This day was a very long and busy day though it changed my life. We picked up the doctors took them to the Tel Aviv hospital for dedication ceremony for the new children's cardio wing. There was a high school choir singing in mostly Hebrew, although we could not understand the words the beautiful melody and their voices sang out. We got to have lunch with Shevet's head nurse and what a blessing that was to learn more about Shevet and Israel. The food was delicious and nothing like hospital cafeteria food here in the states. A full homemade from scratch 5 course meal with local fresh fruit, vegetables, and chicken or fish. We got to go see the children's wing that housed Shevet's children who were recuperating from or preparing for heart surgery. 

One of the little boys I saw and got to see was Baran  ( Oh this sweet little one is
such a warrior. He has had such a hard journey but 

oh what a fighter! We took some toys to give to the children so I brought him a bright red matchbox car. I rolled it around his bed and he followed it and me with his eyes. His mama was so sweet, spoke very good English (she says she is "learning"), and has been by his side 24-7 through July to November. She was very appreciative for our visit and our prayers. I will be forever touched by this little one and forever remember his beautiful eyes and the impact that he had on me. Every time I think of him I pray for him and his family. 


                          “My son pay attention to what I say;
                                   listen closely to my words.
                             Do not let them out of your sight,
                                keep them within your heart;
                        for they are life to those who find them
                            and health to a man’s whole body."
                                                                          - Proverbs 4:20-22 

                                         I will speak more about Baran more to come.... :)
We got to see a documentary film on the children's cardio department which was completely heart moving. I cried seeing all the children in need and those that they were helping not only in Israel but also those from surrounding countries and especially in Africa. Israel has the top cardio unit in the world. They are very impressive and resourceful with what they have. It truly made a impression on me and gave me motivation and inspiration that I will speak about later.

              After a day at Shevet and the hospital we went out for kosher burgers. Yum Yum! We

became great 
fans of the BURGERSBAR. You got to try them!

Yum Yum!!

            We visited the Mount of Olives, saw the Eastern Gate aka Golden Gate, it was 

beautiful and fascinating to learn more about the history and culture of the physical

Standing looking out over the Eastern Gate made me think of so many

  Amazing how God has and will fulfill scripture. Just as in Bible (especially in the

book of Isaiah which was written over 700
 years before the birth of

Jesus) predicted his birth, death, and second coming.

Let's start at the beginning...

His place of birth...

"But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting."
 -Micah 5:2 written: 710 BC (OT- Before Christ)

"After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod..." - Matthew 2:1 (NT)

Christmas is 
the celebration of
the Christ child 
who was born to 
live and die for us. 

             God knew that He needed to come and save us; so He is the true hero. He came himself. The virgin birth is spoken of over 700 years BC (Before Christ) and His name is told to us to tell us exactly who He is. 

The virgin birth, and His name...
Isaiah 7:14 written: 758 BC (
Before Christ)"Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel."  Word "Immanuel" means: God with us.
Isaiah 8:8 written: 758 BC (Before Christ)

And he shall pass through Judah; he shall overflow and go over, he shall reach even to the neck; and the stretching out of his wings shall fill the breadth of thy land, O Immanuel."

"Now the birth of 
Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit." - Matthew 1:18

"He is despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.  And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted.  But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.  All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all." -Isaiah 53 3-6

      "Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins;
  for if you do not believe that I Am, you will die in your sins."                                                                                        - 
John 8:24 

The second coming...
God gave Ezekiel a supernatural vision of this gate.
 43:1 “Afterward he brought me to the gate, the gate that faces toward the east. And behold, the glory of the God of Israel came from the way of the east“.
 43:4; “And the glory of the Lord came into the temple by the way of the gate which faces toward the east.
"Then he brought me back the way of the gate of the outward sanctuary which looketh toward the east; and it was shut.
Then said the Lord unto me; This gate shall be shut, it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter in by it; because the Lord, the God of Israel, hath entered in by it, therefore it shall be shut.
It is for the prince; the prince, he shall sit in it to eat bread before the Lord; he shall enter by the way of the porch of that gate, and shall go out by the way of the same. Ezekiel 44:1-3

You also must be

 ready, because the

 Son of Man will come

 at an hour when you 

do not expect him." 

-Luke 12:40

Going to the Holy Land was breathe taking! Brought the Bible to Life in a different way! Reading and seeing pictures of the stories has changed my life completely. It is hard for me to explain how seeing these places has made the stories not come alive but made them become deeper in heart and soul. For when I turned my life over to God in 2003 the stories became very alive to me, for I was lost and then I was found. It is an experience that is so difficult to explain. It was amazing to see how even unbelievers even believe the prophesies of the Bible.

Learning about the Biblical sites with history and how others see the sites, history and prophesies is so interesting. The Muslims in the year 810 built a wall and placed a grave yard in front because they believe a prophet (who they think Jesus is only a prophet and not the Messiah) cannot walk through a wall and through the graveyard. Their belief would not be able to go through the stone gate but also not be able to walk through the graveyard. Interesting how that they are trying everything to stop the prophesy of the second coming of of the Messiah who they believe is only a prophet. 

This really got me to thinking that our faith should be strong - stronger than the unbeliever that tries to stop the prophesies. Nothing can stop the Almighty! No wall, no graveyard. He is the Almighty who turned water into wine, healed the lame and the sick, and rose the dead, as well as Himself. No wall, no graveyard is going to stop Almighty God. God is always faithful to His word. He has and will always keep His promises. Not only can we believe that for the prophesies of the Old and New Testaments but also we can believe His promises for us, His bride, His people.
So reminds me of one of my favorite verses... 

He has and will fulfill very prophesy and promise.
My hearts bursts and melts at the same time every time I read this.  

                    Toda Raba Shalom!
                                                          More to come... stay tuned...

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Shalom Toda Raba Part III

A little back track:
Me and my family had a conversation about bucket lists in June. When I was asked whats on my bucket list, I stated that, "I have always wanted to visit the Holy Land, it has truly been the only thing on my bucket list." Who would of thought God would answer that prayer so quickly? Who would of thought not even a couple of weeks later, our church announced a mission trip to Israel? Not I. 

   I questioned, "Is this an answer to my prayers?" I prayed, "Lord, if this is. You not only have to convince Aaron to let me go but, tell him to come too. I know that is a VERY tall order to fill. But if you want me to go you have to bring him on board too. Praying for Your will not mine." That afternoon, Aaron called me before he was suppose to go to work for the night.

Aaron: How was church? 
Me: You won't believe what they announced at church today!
Aaron: What? 

Me: They announced a Israel Mission Trip.
Aaron: Awesome! Sign us up!

I was thrown in amazement! What?! No talking him into it.

Me: Really?!! It's in October. ???
Aaron: oh, ok. I will ask for the time off.

What? No, debating me about time off or money. 

God, You really answer prayers! 

         The third day we were asked to go to the Gaza strip, we were forewarned that their are sometimes some rockets in that area. Many people told us that we were crazy to go to Israel at this time. This doesn't matter for we believe that we are to go when God calls, that He will take us through or take us home. It's a win - win
situation. That goes for when we are in Israel, in our home country, home state, and home town. He is the one who is in charge.

"We believe that we are to go when God calls, that
He will take us through or
take us home.
It's a win- win situation."

           We got to pick up and meet two Gaza doctors that see Shevet's kids and recommends them to be a part of the program. They were very appreciative and told us how they have known the founder since the beginning of Shevet Achim ( ). I love seeing Muslims, Jews, Christians loving on children and helping each other serve others. 

I love taking pictures of Doaa. We spent time with Doaa, the mothers, and some volunteers. The most of the mothers do not like their picture taken so, out of respect I did not take any pictures of the mothers that did not want their picture taken. 


      David playing with Doaa. She loved the all the male volunteers. She just loved David as you can tell by her smile. :D
( )


      Rebecca is a volunteer knows seven languages. She is so good with the mothers and the children. Shevet has such talented, dedicated, and committed staff. 

         The next day we ate lunch with the Shevet family & the mothers and what another delicious meal with everyone. Afterwards Aaron and I cleaned up after lunch and cleaned the kitchen. We finished dishes and I began to sweep the floor; Aaron took the stove grates off and began to scrap off the burned on grease over time with a butter knife. The mothers came in, then went and got the other mothers to come see him scrap off the grates. They could not believe that he was not just in the kitchen cleaning but scrapping the  grates. Our language barrier could not hide that. It made me laugh and smile! :D I was so grateful to my
husband that he is not afraid to get in the kitchen to cook and clean. He has such a servant's heart. 

Praying for God to show me what He wanted me to do while I was there. What did He want me to see that I normally wouldn't see. Open my heart and eyes to the way You see things.

"I pray that
the eyes of your heart
may be enlightened in order
that you may know the hope
to which He has called you,
the riches of His glorious inheritance
in His holy people,"

 - Ephesians 1:18

One of my favorite songs:                             

                    Toda Raba Shalom!
                                                          More to come... stay tuned...

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Shalom! Toda Raba! PART II

                             My first day there I was worn out but so happy to be there. We got there the day that the festival was over so many people still continuing to celebrate and party so, we did not get a lot of sleep to all the loud music, shouting, as well as a few sounds of guns being shot off then girls screaming out side my window at 2:30 am. I think that it just scared them and it wasn't close but still terrifying to wake up to. I don't sleep well without Aaron as it is let alone a new place then a whole new country hearing loud guns. So I just for the opened & read my Bible and devotions and prayed, then got up and got ready day. For me this was blessed time for me and God to really focus on what He was doing in me and how He was going to change my life through this trip. 

"Ready for Life Changing experiences!! This trip is going to be the start of a new beginning!"
 - (journal clip)

"So excited! Lord, change my heart to be more & more like Yours! Make me know Your voice! Help me to follow You & not lean on my understanding." 
- (journal clip)

      We had dinner with the volunteers of Shevet ( and we played with lil' Doaa ( Oh how this lil' child brought smiles to all of our faces. Sometimes I would forget that this smiley lil' one was very sick with a hole in her heart. Every time I saw she brightened my day & I pray for her each time I think of her. 

       The food was absolutely delicious! I love Middle Eastern food! Eating outside was wonderful, the weather was not that chilly and NO nats! Always a plus! Wonderful food & lovely company!

That night Aaron flew in so I stayed up and went with them to pick him up. I was up for almost 24 hours before my head hit the pillow. Oh, how I slept like a baby with my Bebe next to me.

Our hostel (hotel) is right in the middle of Jerusalem on Jaffa St. Every patriotic to their country! I love it! Israeli people are so kind and appreciative of our support to their country. 

Jaffa Street was Happenin'!! Our room was on top of the hostel and they had a few sitting areas up there. We could look over and see what was going on in the street. We are people watchers so we enjoyed watching people as we sat on the park bench & from above.  Here the commuter train, people busy going from work to their jobs, and people singing, playing music, and dancing in the street. The Israeli people are so talented! Sometimes they would sing in Hebrew and other songs in English. It was beautiful no matter if I could understand it or not. We really enjoyed Jaffa Street & Zion's Square. 
 Zion Square was full almost every night. I was so amazed how many people would come out and sing together every night (except Shabbat = Sabbath). Even when terrorists are attacking them every day even in the heart of their city, they still continue to sing & dance. I am amazed at their perseverance & dedication to their country and their way of life.

We met all kinds of Israelis: religious Jews, secular Jews, Christians, Muslims, and those we spoke with love Israel and the Israeli people, calling this their home. Defiantly not what we here in the media in the west.
Aaron said he was so amazed how many people came up to him & talked to him. He said with a smile, " They think I am their people." lol! He did fit in with his long hair and beard. :) 

                On the first morning before going to work with Shevet Achim we went to the Garden Tomb for tour and devotion. This is one of my favorite places. What a blessing it was to do this at the beginning of our trip. It really put things into perspective.
               Our tour guide was a young man from Poland, who was there because his home land was desolate from war and he spent 3 months in Israel as a volunteer at the garden.You could see the light of God in his face and his words. He was great on historical information as well as the Bible. 

       He showed us skull mountain, "Golgotha", which is spoken of in the book of Matthew, "and when they come to a place called Golgatha, the Place of the Skull".
        There was a wall with Arabic writing above it. I asked and a gentleman answered me saying there is a Masque  right there and the Muslims built a wall and the writing says, "There is no god but Allah."

         I found this very interesting. I would like to speak to them and ask them why they chose that phrase and that location. I really like to hear others people's beliefs and opinions even when they differ greatly against mine. 

Jesus has already answered this in one of my favorite verses:

"Jesus answered,
"I am the way
and the truth
and the life.
No one comes to the Father
except through me.""

- John 14:6


This is the cistern of the garden which is over 2,000 years old and holds over and holds over 200,000 gallons of water. Which would be more than enough to water the garden in this desert. 


One of my favorite stories about Jesus was John  4 where He met the Samaritan woman at the well. Where he strikes up a conversation with asking for a drink of water and tells her that He is the  everlasting water & if she had Him she would never thirst again. She asked how was that possible? When we accept Him as LORD and Savior then He will satisfy our needs and fill us with Him, His Spirit.

The Garden tomb was an amazing place but, the most amazing feeling is that I know - PERSONALLY know this JESUS - The True and Living GOD. 

                                    For HE is NOT there!
                              For HE is HERE with me! :) 

                         "Remain in me, and I will remain in you." - John 15:4

Toda Raba, Shalom.
                                                         More to come... stay tuned..

Friday, November 20, 2015

Shalom!! Toda Raba! Part I

               Hebrew lesson: Shalom means Peace. Toda Raba means Thank you very much.

               I know that it has almost been a month since we've been home from Israel. It felt like a whirl-wind to get there and busy busy while we were there and when we came home we hit the floor running back to work. We thank you so for your support, encouragement, and patience with me on getting this down.

              God answered prayers from the beginning to the end and then some. I cannot go into every thing so I will be sharing only certain stories and experiences that I feel that God tells me to share.

               God was amazing on how everything came to pass, from invitation to go, us saying yes, raising money to go, as well as getting our jobs to comply for time off. It was perfect timing and perfect plan. My last day of school was the day I flew out and Aaron finally found someone to cover for him for a few extra days. Getting finals and work done so we could go was amazing! God had His hand all over it.

                I flew with our friends Kim and Leo from Atlanta to Paris to Tel Aviv Israel. It was a LONG trip but very nice. Aaron flew my first night in Israel. My first day we woke up at 7 am, we walked to Shevet Achim (, which is a medical ministry for children who are in need for heart surgery, most of the children are from Gaza, Jordan, Iraq, and Iran. We first had a tour of the Shevet home, meeting volunteers, & staff. We had morning devotion with scripture reading, singing worship songs & hymns and praying in thanksgiving & asking for guidance. I fully enjoyed this time with meeting our new brothers & sisters in Christ.

               The Shevet staff and volunteers were dedicated and amazing people from all over the world: Florida, Colorado, New York, England, China, Singapore, Australia... I am completely amazed by  these people who love as Christ loves. As we sang and prayed that morning, I think I got a small glimpse of heaven, people from around the globe singing praises to Jesus.

             This is the new door and inside of the courtyard, absolutely beautiful! They have made great changes to this place!

              After devotion I cleaned all the
bathrooms in the house, during the cleaning I sang as I cleaned and praised God for bringing me to the land where He lived, walked, taught,
and loved. Many may think that cleaning the johns would be a bummer thing but I find it soothing. I cleaned houses for a living for over 8 years and it is such a sense of accomplishment when something is cleaned and smells nice. Two, I appreciate a clean home, especially a bathroom, and bathrooms need to be prayed over too. Everyone uses the facilities and even God can meet them on the white porcelain throne and pipes need prayer too especially in a house that is old. So know that no job is too small for God to bless and He cares for the small things.


            For lunch the Mothers, that come to stay to get help for their children, cooked lunch every day for 35-40 people, except their Holy day Friday so, we had the most delicious Kurdish food. Absolutely delicious!! The first time I have ever had Kurdish food and I could eat it every day! They have a long family style table that sits 30-40 people. Here we sat with people from all around the world, Christians and Muslims together, filling our bellies with the most delicious food talking and smiling together. What a blessed day it was!

            After lunch we did some more cleaning and then welcomed two new mothers and their. children into the Shevet home. I did not know how they would receive us, one we look completely different than them, speak a completely different language... yet gratitude seems to come only in one language: SMILES, HUGS, and KISSES. We stood in the small court yard to say hello and welcome them and they came up to us with big hugs and kisses on each cheek. Oh what joy it was to be a part of this! We met sweet little Doaa ( and Stafro ( Oh what a joy they are! What a Blessed Day!!


                                            Doaa                                                Stafro

Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it."
- 1 Corinthians 12:27

Nothing better than being the hands and feet of Christ! What a Blessing!!

                         Toda Raba, Shalom.
                                                         More to come... stay tuned...

Saturday, September 5, 2015

To get a face lift on life we must first have a character peel.

                           What you do in adversity really is a character peel. Peeling back the layers of yourself to your true self through adversity, it will show your true colors. It will you that you are bitter or make you better, fake or real; It will show yourself and others what you truly believe and where you truly stand. You truly learn if you believe what you say you believe, who your support is and who really cares. It may not feel like a blessing in the midst of the pain, but truly it is. So know when your skin feels like it's being peeled back that it is all good, your just getting a face lift.

“What happens is not as important as how you react to what happens.” — Ellen Glasgow

  So know that when you have a problem and face adversity that this problem/adversity is not a hole but a challenge to take on, to overcome, to achieve who you want to be. It is coming very clear to me, my lessons are not just for me, but for others to learn through me. Just as your lessons in life are not just for you but for others to learn through you. Let's learn from each others mistakes, challenges, problems, trials, adversity... let's over come together. I tell the youth I work with, "Learn from my and others mistakes. Yes, you will make your own but learn from others so you will make less mistakes. Less mistakes means more success and less pain. Though the pain we do endure is not for nothing, it's the peeling away of the unneeded and renewing of who we need to be. 

                                                           "So we do not lose heart. 

Though our outer self is wasting away,
our inner self is being renewed day by day.
 For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an
eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison,
as we look not to the things that are seen
but to the things that are unseen.
For the things that are seen are transient,
but the things that are unseen are eternal." 
-  2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Oh, what a beautiful promise! "Our outer self is wasting away though our inner self is being renewed day by day"! I do not want this wretched flesh any more; I want to be made ANEW!! Thank You, Lord!


Thursday, July 9, 2015

Every good and perfect gift...

                  I found out in 2011 that I was allergic to dogs because my allergies got so bad that my eyes would bulge out and swell up like balls of jelly. Talk about attractive! I was so sad because I had two wonderful dogs that we raised from puppies for 8 1/2 years. It broke my heart when my husband came home and saw my eyes bulging out and one swollen shut. I did not want to give my babies away. He finally said it was time. God answered our prayers and we found great homes for both dogs. Peaches went to a family friend and we put Buddy on a Rottweiler rescue website and found the perfect family for him. He now lives on a farm and goes swimming almost everyday. I feel like a birth mom that gets to go get visit and they send me pictures and videos of my babies enjoying their new family and home. I could not be more happy to get those pictures and videos of my babies looking happy and well.

               I am so completely happy for my babies, I miss them and miss having furry friends greet me every time I come home in the past 4 years. I learned that I could probably do well with a hypoallergenic dog. My parents had a poodle, Snuggles, and I never had any allergy problems with her. So I decided I would look for me a hypoallergenic breed, so I decided that I would start researching. I found one! I went to visit the breeder and her sweet dog. I asked an odd request that probably no one has asked before. I asked if I could hold Isabella and rub my face all over her fur. I knew that I would know in 15-20 minutes if she would bother my eyes or not. So excitedly when 20 to 30 mins. later I had no reaction at all. So for Christmas last year I got a puppy! She was not ready to come home until the end of  January but I was so excited!!! I went over name after name. My mother wanted me to name her Fifi,  No way. Others said Sophia, Nah. or Isabella... No. That is her mama's name. Finally decided that I would name her Belle. I am a huge Beauty and Beast fan and I knew it had to be Belle. And so Belle it is. 
Belle only a few weeks old and her head is just as big as her body. So cute!!! 
Christmas Day visit with Belle and h sister. Looks like mini rotties! So cute!! 
                   So I waited patiently until the end of January when I got to pick my Belle up and bring her home. She had grown so much since I had last seen her yet she was still so tiny. She weighed 1.6 lbs. and was a little longer than the size of my hand. I was so excited! Totally fell in love very quickly! 

                She now weighs almost 4lbs. and is such a fast little one and is so much fun! I don't know what I ever did without her. She is such a joy in our lives. So love this furbaby! 

Our sweet Belle!

Belle on our camping trip to Idaho.

Really? Mom, Really? Another picture.

Us playing peekaboo!

taking a cat nap

Can you tell we are in love with her!?! LOL!!

                We had such a good time! I cannot wait to go camping again. So excited about making new memories on our road trips and adventures.

                Many of my loved ones have asked me about Belle and what our experience has been. She is so much fun and I will defiantly be posting later more about our adventures.

               It's amazing to me that little things like this little dog can totally change my life in great big amazing ways! Makes me think of James 1:17,
"Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights...". 

              So blessed to have this little dog! Thank you Lord for sending me this sweet furbaby!