Happy Mothers Day

It is Mothers Day here in the USA. I would like to wish a Happy Mothers Day to all of the moms who follow and read my blog.

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Many of the people I interact with a lot here in my blog are wonderful moms with great blogs to follow. I hope today is a special day for you even though the times are quite different.

I would like to thank the mom bloggers I interact with and follow for your posts that inspire me, give me smiles, and brighten my days.

This Mothers Day I would like to share a song with you. The song is from a genre I don’t usually listen to but the woman who wrote it and sang it did so inspired by her grandmother. The song is- God Made A Woman.

I will share the version from American Idol so you can see the back story and also the full song.

Happy Mothers Day. God Bless 🙂

Reflections on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Every year when Martin Luther King Jr. Day draws near, I like to show my students the video of Dr. King’s famous I Have A Dream speech. I explain about the terrible segregation and discrimination that Dr. King and others worked to end. I explain that his speech happened while Congress was considering the Civil Rights Act and that they benefit from Dr. King’s work and the work of others because we have a law against discrimination.

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Each time I watch the speech, I get goosebumps. I was a child during the Civil Rights movement. I was only ten years old when Dr. King was killed. But even as a child, I admired him and what he stood for.

The church should be the place where equality is the norm and not the exception. The only way to become a Christian is through the cross of Jesus. We are all sinners who need forgiveness and we find it at the foot of the cross of Jesus. There are no elite people before the cross of Jesus.

Paul wrote something revolutionary 2,000 years ago. In Galatians 3 we read:

“There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus”

There is to be no dividing line in the church. We are all one in Christ Jesus.

The Christian’s thought should only be does a person we meet know Jesus or not.

God has blessed me with the wonderful opportunity to share his love with people from all over the world. My childhood days of feeling inspired by Martin Luther King Jr., becoming best friends with the only African American boy in 7th grade, becoming good friends with two Native American brothers in 10th grade, set the tone early on for what would be my future calling from God to share his love with people from diverse cultures.

I am thankful for the impact Dr. King had on me as a child.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

A Snow Day-Just What This Spoonie Needed

I have shared about being what is called a spoonie before. A spoonie refers to someone living with chronic illness. A young woman Christine Miserandino shared with a friend trying to understand what having chronic illness felt like. She used the example of spoons and that people with chronic illness have limited spoons while other people do not have limited spoons. The spoons represent energy for the day. I am sharing a video of her explaining her spoon theory in this post.

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As someone living with chronic illness, I have to think about my energy level. If I have a long day of teaching, the next day I am exhausted. Fatigue is my constant companion that I don’t want to hang out with.

So when classes were canceled yesterday due to a snow and ice storm, I welcomed the day of rest I had not planned on. I saw the notification that school was canceled after waking up to my alarm, I went back to sleep. I slept until 10:45.

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After I got up, I spent time listening to worship music. Then I played some word games online and caught up on my blog. I had taught morning, afternoon, and evening the day before and had thought Friday would be a nap day. God blessed me with a whole day of rest. I even took a one hour nap.

My hope is to spend today writing more for the book I feel led to write.

I am thankful for little blessings like snow days. It also gives me so much hope to know that this life is temporary. One day I will wake up in heaven because of Jesus and will not have chronic illness anymore.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

The Holidays Are Over, So…

Winter blues?

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The Holidays are over. Christmas and New Years have come and gone. If I was living in a warm climate like some of my followers in places like South Africa, Australia, Jamaica, Antigua, Brazil or other warm places, I would perhaps go to the beach.

But for those of us in the U.S., Canada, and other northern countries, when the holidays are over, it means it is just boring winter time. We have more hours of dark than sunlight and it is cold.

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Sound depressing? For some it can be.

Soon I will be back to teaching classes, next week in fact. It helps to get back to real life after a break. But as someone who lives with depression.anxiety caused by chronic illness, what helps me the most?

Each day I realize there is opportunity for me to share the love of Jesus with refugees and immigrants. Each morning I begin my day in prayer and listening to worship music. It is my relationship with Jesus that helps me the most.

It also helps to get out and be with people. I enjoy going to coffee shops. The ones I go to regularly are places that I know the people who work there. I have also met some of the other regular customers.

Visiting my refugee and immigrants friends is great. We eat, drink tea afterwards and sit and talk. Thursday evening I did just that. I visited a family from Iraq. We ate dinner and then sat down for tea and conversation for a few hours.

Writing helps too. Although I tend to get absorbed in it and forget to do things like eat until I am really really hungry.

What do you do to beat the winter blues? Or for those in warmer climates the pot-holiday blues. 🙂

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Story Time- Sparklers in the Apartment?

I was in Constanta Romania for Christmas and New Years December 2005/January 2006. I went there to help them with their Christmas Eve and Christmas Day services among other things.

I was invited to a New Years party at the home of a family from the church. They lived in a 3 bedroom apartment. It was a fun evening of games, food, and friendship. When midnight came, we said La Multi Ani, one more year, to each other and then they lit sparklers in the apartment. You know the sparklers used for the 4th of July?

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When they lit them, at first I was concerned about fire safety. An image of a burning inferno crossed my mind. In the U.S., we would hopefully never light sparklers inside. But then I remembered something. Most of the apartment buildings in Romania have cement floors, walls, etc. A fire could not spread from one room to another or one apartment to another. So I joined in with the festivities.

It has been my privilege to join in celebrations in many cultures. Celebrations are a time of joy whether for a holiday, a wedding, a birthday, or a graduation.

Did you know that the angels in heaven celebrate whenever someone comes to know Jesus? In Luke 15, yes the chapter with the story of the Prodigal Son, Jesus said:

“In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

When someone comes to know Jesus, the angels rejoice because it means a new member of the family similar to when a couple has a new baby and friends and family rejoice.

So next time we don’t feel worthy, or feel lost and overlooked, remember that if you have Jesus, heaven rejoices over you. 🙂

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

New Things Come

“This is what the Lord says— he who made a way through the sea, a path through the mighty waters, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland”. Isaiah 43

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The start of a new year, a new decade, can mean different things. For some it can bring on dread wondering what next in a life full of struggles. For some it can be an exciting time of wondering what new possibilities await them.

God calls us to look to him however we are feeling and whatever we are experiencing. He call us to him because he is prepared to do new things in our lives.

God call us to not dwell on the struggles of the past but to look to him because he has all power and loves us.

For me one of the new things is to finish writing a book. My prayer for the book is for it to glorify Jesus, encourage people in their faith, spur people to support efforts to help victims, and reach people who have been victims.

The book is from a short story I wrote in my other blog encounterswiththeancients.com and the story is Jessica’s Encounter At The Harbor Coffee Shop.

Thank you for reading. God Bless and Happy New Year. 🙂

The Decade Tag

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With this being the end of not only a year, but also a decade, I thought I would look back at what the Lord has done in my life the past ten years. Also I would like to make this a tag- The Decade Tag.

To play along:

1- Please share a link to the creator of the tag- jesusluvsall.wordpress.com

2- Share some highlights for you over the past decade and if you want a few low points

3- Tag whoever you wish to.

4- Ask them some questions

5- Use any picture appropriate for such a tag.

Highlights for me are:

2 trips to Brazil one with a group from church and one to teach English at a univeristy

1 trip to Mexico with a group from church

Studied Spanish for one year

Studied Portuguese for one year

Began and continue to teach in a specialized program- Family Literacy

Had a mentoring/study group for young people from Vietnam

Low points for the Lord has helped me with

Found our I have Celiacs Disease

Found out I have Fibromyalgia

Waiting to find our about another autoimmune problem

My questions for those I am tagging

1- What was your favorite song or songs from this past decade?

2- What was your favorite movie or movies from this past decade?

3- What was your favorite book from this past decade?

If they wish to participate, I am tagging

Purple Rose

Sharon

Deborah Marie

Jenny

Garden Faith

Sarah

Joy Cottage

Nikita

Noah

Angelica

New Years Tag

Only four days left in this year, it has gone by so quickly. With New Year’s Day approaching, I wanted to create a tag.

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Here is how to participate:

1- Share a link back to the person who tagged you.

2- Share a link to the person who created the tag- jesusluvsall.wordpress.com

3- Share a favorite New Year’s Memory

4- Answer the questions of the person who tagged you.

5- Tag whoever you want.

6- Use any picture that you like for New Years.

One of my favorite New Year’s memory is when I was invited to join a celebration in a Hispanic church in my city. We started off by singing worship songs together for about and hour. We all went to the front at 11:45 for the pastor to pray for us. At midnight we cheered for the New Year and wished each other a Happy New Year.

After that we went to the basement of the church for food. It was the first time I ate Pozoles, a soup, and authentic tamales. It was SO delicious.

My Questions for my nominees if they choose to participate.

1- If you could celebrate the New Year anywhere. where would it be?

2- What is your favorite snack food for New Years?

3- Have you ever kept a New Year’s resolution? If so, what was it?

4- What do you want to do with your blog next year?

5- Do you prefer a big party or a small gathering to celebrate?

My Nominees if they choose to participate are:

lifesfinewhine.com

drawingclosertochrist.com

becomingtheoilandthewine.com

hearttokens.home.blog

curatingthoughts.blog

africaboy.blog

worldofmythoughts2017.wordpress.com

nopassingfancy.wordpress.com

herrychiccounsels.com

Story Time- My Christmas This Year

3 invitations were given to me for Christmas, 2 for lunch and 1 for dinner. On Sunday morning, Christmas looked all set for spending time with friends.

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But Monday came with an unwelcome visitor. It was a stomach bug that kept me from eating Monday evening until Christmas evening when I finally could eat some yogurt.

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So you would think I would feel dismayed, but you would be wrong.

Sunday morning my pastor challenged the congregation to take the money they would normally give for benevolence offering after communion and use the money to bless someone.

She came to mind right away the young woman who I met and have mentioned in a few posts. She is the young woman with the semi colon tattoo. I had coffee with her last week. She is a fragile soul. I bought a Christmas card with the message about Jesus in it and bought a gift card to a coffee shop she likes. I gave it to her Sunday afternoon.

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I told her she couldn’t open it until Christmas Day. She actually waited. She thanked me via instagram.

Christmas after all is about sharing the love of Jesus with others whether it be family or friends. It is about celebrating the birth of our Savior by sharing his love. So even though I was sick, I was able to share the love of Jesus with a gentle yet fragile soul.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Merry Christmas- Grateful for Online

I got hit with something Sunday night. I don’t know if it is flu or autoimmune. No fever makes me think autoimmune. I won’t into details of what, but have spent a lot of time sleeping.

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I wasn’t able to make it to church for Christmas Eve Service, BUT I was able to watch it online. I am so grateful for being able to watch it online. The message was wonderful about the choir of angels being sent to shepherds. The songs were a mix of old Christmas hymns and contemporary ones.

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If I feel well enough, I have two invites for Christmas Day. I am writing this Christmas Eve night. Hopefully I will be able to eat and join my friends.

If not, the main thing is that Jesus was born as a human baby after leaving his throne in heaven because of his great love for us. No matter what the circumstances are in our lives, the love of God can be celebrated whether with others or at home watching online.

Merry Christmas 🙂