95- Guilty of Faultfinding!

95- Guilty of Faultfinding!

A little article in Guideposts magazine by Catherine Marshall brought a big conviction!

Catherine Marshall was the wife of Peter Marshall a famous Presbyterian pastor who also served as Chaplain of the Senate in Washington DC. She is known for her writings of fiction, non-fiction, and books she edited of her husband’s sermons and prayers. Her best known books are: A Man Called Peter, which was on the NY Bestseller’s List for three years in the 1950’s, and Christy, the story of her mother’s years as a teacher of children in the Appalachians.

February 24, 1983

One day, Catherine asked the Lord if He had any special word for her that day. He told her she was to fast from faultfinding, to accept people as they were and to drop her judgment of them.

Catherine wrote that she was inclined to be a perfectionist, meaning critical of herself and others—“a habit that tends toward judgment.”

She proposed that the cessation of faultfinding leads to creativity, goodwill, mercy, better health, better relationships.

Father–I am the faultfinder of the age! It’s sickening! I judge everyone and everything. I always have an opinion. I feel I see things rightly and others quite often are misguided.

I remember: when I was about 12 my mom said, “You used to be so tactful.”

I need to be done with this very seriously detrimental traitMy God shall supply all my need to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Phil 4:19

You know, Lord, I wonder what Dan thinks I think of him, I find so much fault in others.  Let me try by Your divine enablement, to fast from faultfinding.

From a World MAP (missionary) magazine: do a sober self-evaluation to assess your personal resources for the Lord’s use in future fruitful endeavors.

Remembering: 2 Corinthians 12:9 My grace is sufficient for you, My strength is made perfect in weakness. This means: sufficient for me to live victoriously despite the devil’s buffeting!

March 4  Lord, You are faithful. I am realizing that what I have NOT LIKED in several people–what has really separated us–has been faultfinding! And I see that I am a chief offender.

94- A Message That Became Prophetic

94- A Message That Became Prophetic

December 1982 Dan was asked by our pastor to speak one Sunday morning. These are my notes:

*self-centeredness is against God’s heart and God’s gospel

*Christ died for the church, for the kingdom, not just for me

*Romans 5 – Christ died for us

*Ephesians 5 – Christ gave Himself for the church

*Ephesians 1 – The church is the fullness of Him who fills all in all

*therefore we are not to love for ourselves

*be a servant, even if you work for a difficult taskmaster

*care not for ME

*do everything heartily as unto the Lord

Three months after this message we invited a family from our church to move into our home.

Continue reading “94- A Message That Became Prophetic”

92- Willing and Obedient

92- Willing and Obedient

December 11, 1982

Dan has been offered a position as program director at KNIS—full time! Could mean a move to Carson City. I’m sort of shaken.

We are on the brink of an adventure, a certain step of faith.

Guest speaker at church last night and this a.m. is Anthony Campolo. He is speaking on self-denial, sacrifice, giving, meekness, peacemaking, mourning over the world condition.

He was teaching us Jesus’ heart.

I have definitely come to appreciate Dan’s sincere and anointed edification of the saints on the radio. It’s not his own personality making it up. It’s a man seeking and serving a living , loving, worthy Lord, and sincerely encouraging others to do the same.

Moving is not my idea and it sounds hard. I do not care for the small town of Carson at all.

But I lay aside these for Your perfect and blessed will. That we might be in fellowship with You, that our boys would know You and Your reality.

December 12

Campolo got onto missions in today’s message.

He asked for full surrender and full commitment. Pastor Dave asked for hands of those interested in missions. 

He seemed to acknowledge Dan and I. Dan gave his testimony tonight at church and some teaching. It came off well, serious, sincere, Spirit-filled. Gene gathered everyone around us to pray for KNIS job and our lives and Pastor prayed for the missions interest to be confirmed, put together, and moved along.

ONLY BY YOU, LORD! My feet are cold; my faith is small, but I am willing and obedient.

Looking back, I am in awe that one dear friend prayed about the job offer, and our faithful Pastor picked up from the Spirit about the missions calling. God, You are amazing in how You work!

88- Not a tumbleweed, NOT ME!

88- Not a tumbleweed,

NOT ME!

What a lonely image–a tumble weed in the desert…

All of these verses are paraphrased, so I did not put them in blue.

October 7, 1982

Jeremiah 17  If I trust in man, I will be like a tumbleweed in the desert and inhabit parched places.

I am to be one who trusts and hopes in the Lord and the consequence is that I will be like a tree with deep roots by the river which bears fruit even in drought! Continue reading “88- Not a tumbleweed, NOT ME!”

86- Humbly Asking Forgiveness

86- Humbly Asking Forgiveness

October 5, 1982 Prayer Meeting at Church

Last night Dan had me go to the prayer meeting at church and he stayed home with the boys, so that I would catch the vision of Life Center and be with serious-minded Christians. When I hesitated, he said not to feel pressured to participate.

It was a glorious time with You, Jesus. In the pastor’s office, AS FOREWARNED BY YOU, Jeri came and sat right across from me! At an appropriate time I took her hand and led her out to the next room and asked her forgiveness regarding the situation with Dani. She said Dani’s name just as I did! and she forgave me. I did not want anything to hinder God’s working in me because of carrying unforgiveness  Praise You, Father.

One brother in the group was broken and I spoke: “it is no shame to be broken as Christ was broken for us.” In my thoughts as we had been praying for him—“he’s broken, oh! and he’s ashamed”—that’s when I spoke. I don’t know if the Lord spoke through me, or if my mind put that together. Perhaps, God, You would let me know. I ask in Jesus’ name.

It was so glorious being in God’s presence, seeing Him minister and use people. All I could say was “precious Jesus.”

Someone had used the phrase, “God wants to anoint You with ointment and minister to your wounds”– speaking to a brother. As I worshiped, I thought, “If I had ointment I would pour it on You, Jesus.”

I felt as if He said, “Speaking to Me in praise and in the Spirit is ointment for Me.”

85- Taking a Stand Against Anger

85- Taking a Stand Against Anger

October 5, 1982

Dearest Lord Jesus, I have been experiencing anger, manifesting in impatience and yelling, which has come up during this ‘squeeze’ of me trying to juggle my home life with a part-time job–I’ve gotten into a bad habit.

I have been grieved over this ugly sin of losing control of myself. Satan has made me feel condemned—and, in the twisted way we humans think, I find myself arguing with myself that I am justified in screaming in order to get control of the situation.

But last Sunday morning I missed church, two boys sick. Dan relayed the Pastor’s message to me, and he encouraged me, and we read scripture together.

Dan said he had taken a stand against anger. One day he realized  he’d been enjoying anger and making clear choices to engage in it and decided that was not how he wanted to live—I had to agree with him, his story is my story.

Now, for 2 ½ days I have been experiencing victory in Your precious name, Jesus. I have many times made the conscious willful choice to be joyful, to be loving—and have not fallen into anger.

Tim-Mark-Steve, our wonderful sons-

The boys have been inside the house and ill, so I stopped my life and ministered to them which cut the stress a lot by not trying to do too much housework. Thank You, Jesus. May it please You to continue to give me this resolve to stand against the temptations to fall into anger.

78- Answered Prayer, Unanswered Prayer

78- Answered Prayers, Unanswered Prayers

Mark about 5 months old

Because my Aunt Ida was in critical condition in the hospital, Mark and I flew to Oxnard to visit her. Although she was a serious Catholic I was not sure if she had made her peace with God through Jesus.

 

August 1, 1982

I feel the need to be purposeful and specific in prayer during this visit home….great spiritual battle for Ida’s soul.

*get to the hospital in time    YES  [meaning: before she died. I did!]

*see Aunt Ida, be able to talk to her alone    YES

*Mark sleep well   YES

*Mark and I stay healthy   MOSTLY

*encourage Connie regarding her faith in Christ   YES

*have special time with Connie      YES

*pray specifically daily   YES

*memorize John 5:24   NO

*do discipleship book daily or twice daily   NO

*have time with Marsha, love her     YES

*be glorified through me to my parents   ?hope so!

*talk to Nancy   NO

*talk to Jane   YES

*talk to nurses   NO

*talk to fellow travelers   YES   YES   YES!

*receive specific knowledge, verses about Dan, our family, raising the boys   NO

*ample opportunity to talk to Uncle Larry   NO

*boldness from the Spirit –moving in evangelism and mercy for Larry   NO

*a decision for Christ from Larry   NO

*clear ‘word’ for Ida from You   NO –I had to wear a surgical mask because of my sore throat and she had trouble understanding me

*Dan strengthened at home, consistent with boys, able to get them to our friends easily for babysitting each day   YES, it seems to have gone very well.

It looks like Dad even had time to cut the boys’ hair.

72- Looking Back to the ’80’s from 2017 Vantage Point

72- Looking Back to the 80’s from 2017 Vantage Point

Looking back to another time…

As I (now age 72) am reading my journals for this blog, looking WAY back to another time, they were full of my crying out to the Lord. I was trading my brokenness for His strength. I was overwhelmed in my circumstances and knew that I needed the life of Jesus which was inside me to pour forth out of me in order to cope with the day-to-day, to make sense of everything, to keep me afloat.

I felt earnestly my responsibility of raising our boys carefully so that they would grow up to love the Lord, be strong in their walks with Him, and be prepared for the mission field, should God resume and confirm our call.

I also wanted to please God and please my husband. I had married a man who was a real man: smart, responsible, hard working, mature. He had failed in his first marriage, as had I, and we were both committed to our success as a team. He read and studied his Bible, and lived for God and family. He also adopted the ‘going to church’ mentality, which meant we all went to church together. There were lots of meetings in all the churches in the 1980’s.

Everyone we knew in Life Center Church was there every time the doors were opened, a minimum of Sunday morning, Sunday evening, and also for the Wednesday night home groups. That’s where we worshiped the Lord, that’s where our friendships were. As the boys grew up, their friends were our friends’ kids, friendships that lasted through their teen years, into adulthood, and continuing to this day. Our sons are turning 38, 37, 35, 33 this year. Even though people have moved, they keep in touch through Facebook, etc.

The following are verses that motivated me in my early walk in pursuing Jesus every day and still motivate me today. The thing is, my journals are still full of me pouring my heart out to Him.

You will seek Me and find Me when you search for me with all your heart.

I sought the Lord and He heard me and delivered me from all my fears.

But as for me, I TRUST in You, O Lord; I say, “You are my God.” My times are in Your hand.

But he who TRUSTS in the Lord, mercy shall surround him.

You are my hiding place; You shall preserve me from trouble; You shall surround me with songs of deliverance.

Behold the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him, on those who hope in His mercy.

Jeremiah 29:13; Psalm 34:4; Psalm 31:14-15a; Psalm 32:10; Psalm 32:7;Psalm 33:18.

My message is: be glad if you are weak, insecure, not confident—that means that more than other people you will go to Jesus continuously for His strength, for His security, and for His confidence.  And for your daily life you will need His perspective and His ability to persevere in you through your trials. Because you are aware of what you are not–You will be diligently seeking Him and leaning on Him, and you will receive much favor.

Psalm 147:11 The Lord delights in those who fear Him, who put their hope in His unfailing love. NIV

Psalm 149:4 For the Lord takes delight in his people; He crowns the humble with victory. NIV

Be glad if you feel that you are untalented, because in time He will unearth gold in you and use you!

Don’t wallow in what you are not. Jesus has everything we need and is the most generous Person I know. He loves to share His life. As He writes blogs and books through me, He gets the credit because I am dialoguing with Him through every paragraph! People will say: “SHE can write?? I never knew it was in her.”

As He sings through you, people will say: “I’ve sat near her in church and she really worships and loves the Lord,” and He gets the credit.

As you become strong in everyone’s sight because you are relying on Jesus for everything, those who know the real you (the insecure you who feels ineffectual and inferior) will be amazed at how the Lord shines through you.

And in all these things, He gets the attention, He gets the glory! And that is really what it is all about.

68- Where’s My Focus?

68- Where’s My Focus?

Dan had obtained a CofO (Certificate of Occupancy) from the city of Reno, but our new solar house was still pretty unfinished inside. Through all these trials (multiple pregnancies, two little rambunctious boys and a newborn, fatigue, low income, unfinished house, multiple moves) God was teaching me to trust Him and to be joyful. I was a s-l-o-w learner.

This paragraph from a magazine was scotch taped into my journal. It was titled ON FAITH, by Howard Hendricks: God never tells you He won’t put you in the fire. What He has said is He won’t put you in the fire alone. FAITH is not only the means of entrance into the Christian life; it is the means of growth in the Christian life. FAITH flourishes in the fire. I am convinced that God will not use you greatly until He tests you thoroughly. When He has tested you thoroughly, don’t be surprised if He picks you as His instrument to accomplish purposes that you didn’t dream would ever be accomplished through your life. My deep prayer for you is that God will give you FAITH, vision, and courage equal to your opportunity.

I believed those words, I believed that God was IN the fire with me and that I was safe and in His will, I trusted Him. And as I dodged the flames, I was pouring out my heart in my journal, needing His help to cope. I was fighting to keep my FOCUS on Jesus!!

May 26, 1982 I know I am focusing on the house, rather than on the Lord, BUT I am trying to be thankful in all things! So, here’s my list of what I am being thankful for: Thank You for no doors in this house, no living room curtains, no tile in the bathrooms or kitchen, no vanity or tub in the boys’ bathroom, no bought shower curtains, no rock walkway outside, dirty windows (33 of them), [most at ground level because the house is burmed into the side of the hill], no floor covering, no landscaping, no closet shelves, no garage, no fence. Father, I do love You—I’m just trying to follow the “being thankful in everything” rule by listing these things. It still seems like a bit much to ask of me.

Today I read:

Psalm 115:12 The Lord has been mindful of us; He will bless us; He will bless the house of Israel; HE WILL BLESS THE HOUSE OF (Aaron) DAN!!!

Yesterday Dan read: Psalm 113:7 He raises the poor from the dust, and lifts the needy from the ash heap.

During this time I began listening to the Nancy Missler tapes about Agape Love, over and over and over. And taking notes. Nancy helped me to FOCUS on leaning on Jesus for the love God needed me to give away every day in my life.

Me and my 3 sons (one is hiding)

The following entry is from a letter I wrote to my parents. Betty (who the boys called Tutu), Dan’s father’s wife who was my age and who was becoming a very good friend, was a direct answer to my prayers for help. 

November 10, 1981

Tomorrow is shopping day. Tutu has been going with us a couple of times a month, and she enjoys doing this with us. She takes Timmy or Stephen in her shopping cart and I take the other one [and once Mark was born, I carried him in a front pack]. We make our way through the store (usually laughing–she’s such an upbeat person and thinks everything the boys do and say is funny!).  Then after we go through the check out aisle, while I strap the boys into their car seats, she puts all of the groceries in the car. At our house she carries my bags inside while I get the boys out of the car seats and occupied. She transfers her groceries to her car and drives around the mountain to her house. Such a friend. Such a great help.

Thanking You today as I am writing this!–

Tutu, my dear friend

for Tutu who was a very special person. We are looking forward to our reunion with her in heaven.

64- You Subdue My Peoples

64- You Subdue My Peoples…

Call upon Me in the day of trouble. Psalm 50:15

This is a God story that is one of the most important of my life, because God met me so practically. He was so real to me as I cried out in desperation.

I was struggling one day when the boys were excessively fussy, the house was more than messy, and I felt very overwhelmed.

Sept 19, 1981 I cried out to the Lord with a loud voice, went to my Bible and prayed, Psalm 139:23a “Search me, O God.” My eyes fell on the opposite page:

Psalm 144:1-2 Blessed be the LORD, my strength, who teaches my hands to war, and my fingers to fight; my high tower, and my deliverer; my shield, and He in whom I trust, WHO SUBDUES MY PEOPLES UNDER ME.

I felt God was saying to me: Keep praising and blessing Me. This is war. This is spiritual attack and I am teaching you how to fight: which means… how to keep Your eyes on Jesus in the midst of a trial. He is your goodness now, because you have none of your own, He is your fortress now—because You are defenseless. He is your high tower now—take refuge in Him. He is delivering you now, believe it and watch Him. He is your shield against the fiery darts of the devil—call on Him now. Trust Jesus. Besides all that…He is subduing the boys. LISTEN!

Thank You, Lord, for keeping me from anger, from screaming! It is You who impressed on me that frustration and yelling are rude and they are futile, they do not work. Thank You for sweet victory, for answered prayer, for the reality of my Living Lord and the Living Word! Thank You, Jesus, for proving Yourself to be my refuge. You are teaching me not wallow in disappointment when things don’t go my way or when people don’t call but that You are my ever-present and available help in time of trouble. I am learning to rely on You, not on friends.

Psalm 144:12 That our sons may be like plants grown up in their youth… I take this verse personally and ask that they be wise and stand tall and be grown up even in their youth, so that You may receive glory. Teach us that we may teach them. Keep us in right attitude and perspective.

Me with my boys, just before Mark was born~