Summertime

I remember hearing a song growing up, part of the lyrics were ‘summertime and the living is easy…….Summertime  by  Ella Fitzgerald, that’s all I remember of the song, but I remember the memories that come back when I hear that song. Memories of school being out for the summer and the fun of going to summer camp, spending it with my friends and learning a new craft or riding horses, singing songs by the campfire, telling stories, some true and some not.  Summertime always was a time to gather with friends and family, go to family picnics and reunions and catch up on the news of each family.

As I reached adulthood, it seemed like Summer was just another season, and nothing special happened or at least not very often. Times have changed where everyone is in a hurry now, there are deadlines to meet and the thought of making special plans to get together with family and friends isn’t as easy as it once was. It’s no longer a 9 to 5 world, where your weekends are your weekends to use how you see fit. Everyone works different schedules and times and as much as all of us want to connect and reflect on our lives and where we have been, what we’ve been through, where we are headed-it’s not as simple as it sounds.

SUMMER

Summer also signifies the hot season for most of us. A time to go to the pool  or water park and cool off after a long day of work; cooking meals on the charcoal or gas grill, sipping iced tea or lemonade on the front porch and waving to the neighbors as they go by.

Summer is one of my favorite seasons of the year.  If I could escape winter and spring I would; however living in Ohio does not afford me that luxury at this time.  So when summer temps hit the area, I get excited. No more wearing bulky clothing.  I can drag out my skirts and capri pants..  And the best part is hardly any shoes.  Just flip flops.  Pull my hair up in a ponytail until I can decide how short to get it cut and feel free. We have bonfires in our backyard area, roast marshmallows and enjoy time with family and friends when we can. It is so peaceful to hear the fire crackling and the crickets chirping. Chasing fireflies with our grandchildren and seeing them get so excited as they place them in the jar for a bit!

Summer is also a great time to go to amusement parks or zoos and see the sights and sounds.  Going fishing and just spending time in nature. Not that you can’t accomplish these things in winter or spring, but for me it’s all about summertime.

When the first day of summer hits, summer solstice, the longest day of the year, it signifies days where the sun is up longer than in the winter. Winter time can be a time of the blues, if you don’t get enough sunshine in your life, depending on where you live, of course.

So, now you know why I enjoy the summer months. Autumn is my other favorite. Seeing the changing of the colors and enjoying the beauty God gives us each day.  What is your favorite time of the year and why? I would love to know.

Thanks for stopping by. Blessings to all of you and remember Jesus Loves You!

 

 

 

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Out of the Box

I am the church.  I am the hands and feet of Jesus. I am his child.  He loves me. He created me.

The other day I was conversing with a friend and we were talking about the church. How we loved attending.  But then I said, you know that the church is not a building we go to worship Jesus and hear sermons, but that WE ARE THE CHURCH.

BoxLight

Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church; the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. -Ephesians 4:11-12

So many people tend to get confused on this subject. What will we accomplish if we only stay within the four walls of a building.  How will we reach the people we need to reach. It’s great if you can draw them into the building to learn about Jesus and His mercy and grace, but if you aren’t sure what being a Christian is all about, you will only get a tiny part of it in the building.  Reaching out to those in need and showing them love in a practical way, that’s where you start to build relationships and as you walk with the Lord and develop an intimate relationship with him, you can then share your testimony and stories with others and this helps to show them what a loving Father we have.

You can go on mission trips, and a missionary is not someone that just goes overseas to poor countries and shares God’s love, but you can be a missionary to the person standing in the grocery line with you, or you can be a missionary talking to a waitress in a diner. A missionary is simply someone that loves Jesus, has accepted him as their Lord and Savior and will share the gospel, with all.  If you are in your comfort zone, than you need to look for other ways to serve the Lord.  Staying in one place where you are comfortable doesn’t grow you and refine you as the Lord would like.

“You are the light of the world-like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.”                           -Matthew 5:14

Anywhere that you can be an ambassador of The Light, that’s where you can do your mission work. All of us face trials and struggles in our lives. None of us are exempt. But when you have Jesus in your life, you can face anything; nothing is impossible with or for God to handle.  If you are not sure what your mission field looks like, pray to God and ask him where you would best be suited to serve. Serving in any type of ministry area is a great blessing to you and in return you will be blessing others and honoring God.

“Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.”                          -Matthew 19:26

Jesus loves you! Blessings to you,

Carlene

 

 

 

Peace & Harmony

HarmonyI just wanted to share some scripture images before I retire for the day. I have been having a lot of difficulty sleeping lately.  I know some of it is because of all the tragic events that have happened over the last several days.  Too much death.  And I am only watching from afar. Trying to find peace in the world is difficult, but having peace in our hearts because of Jesus is absolutely possible.  I know. I have the Peace of God within me. I know he weeps for us and with us.

Peace

Insomnia is the worst. This is the first time in my life I have ever had this problem. I have known others that have suffered from it, but never had a clue how relentless it is. Sleep was one thing that always came easy, until recently.

Jesus Loves You! Many Blessings,

Carlene

 

 

My Heart is Heavy

Today my heart is heavy.   With all the death that has occurred in the last few days. The massacre at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Florida.  I mourn with those that have lost loved ones, I mourn for the survivors that have forever had their lives changed. The only thing I can do is pray, without ceasing.  Pray for healing and pray for peace.  I know how much the Lord weeps over these losses, because I can feel it in my spirit.  Continue reading My Heart is Heavy

Senseless Sorrow

memorial candleThere are no words to describe how I am feeling right now except pure sadness.  It seems that everyday there is some type of killings or pre-meditated murders.  When I heard of the shootings at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Florida and at last count 50 killed and 53 critically injured (CBS News), my heart is broken.  And I know I am not the only one that feels this way.

On July 20, 2012 my cousin, Matt McQuinn, was one of the victims in the Aurora Colorado movie theater shooting.  There are no words that comfort you when tragedy like this happens. We knew Matt loved Jesus and we know he is with him. That was the best comfort we could have.

Dear Lord Jesus,

We don’t know why things like this happen? We don’t understand, but we know that you have plans for all our lives. Lord I know that you will cause good to come out of this horrible tragic situation. Lord I ask you be with the family members that lost loved ones, for all the survivors and for everyone that has been affected by this senseless killing, yet again.  I come to you, and ask that you pour out your peace upon each and every one of them and comfort them. In your Holy name, Amen.

 

 

 

 

Understanding What is Important

Understandingface-985977_640

In all areas of life, understanding is part of the process.  In order to do anything well, you have to understand how something operates, what is the main goal of the process and how you fit into that process.

There are so many topics that could be covered discussing understanding, but I am going to talk about healing from hurts  and hangups in life.

Many people, at one point in their lives will need people to understand what they are going through or what they are experiencing and even if you have never been through the same situations they have encountered, you can have a empathetic understanding. You can be someone that can feel safe talking to and confiding  in.

I know I have been hurt in the past, by people I trusted with details of my life that I just wouldn’t share with anyone and sometimes those confidences were spilled out in other conversations.  No one intentionally set out to hurt me, they just forgot and it ‘slipped’ out before they could retract their words.  Other times, because I perceived something that was said to have a totally different meaning that what it actually was, it created mis-understandings and caused rifts.

If you have been emotionally, physically or mentally abused, and your are stuck in a relationship that you know in your mind is not good for you, but in your heart, you don’t see any way to let go, do not fear, you are not alone. Many people become stuck in unhealthy relationships.  They love the person they are with either because at one time there was an honest raw love or perhaps they have been alone for so long that even if the attention isn’t good all the time, it’s better than no attention. Many abusers, are control freaks, it has to be their way or now way. So you walk around on eggshells, start to isolate yourself, because you don’t want to upset them and in my opinion that is exactly what they hope to accomplish. If you stay isolated from good friends, family and a support system, it’s easy to fall into the belief that you will never be worth anything; no one would want you. If you start off in this kind of relationship with little or no self esteem or self worth, it won’t take long for that to plummet to zero.  And if you have lots of self worth and a high confidence level and you slowly slip out of sight of friends and family, you feel like you have failed, because you should have known better.

The lie that you are not worthy; useless; unlovable comes from the enemy of our souls. He wants you to walk in darkness, where he can continue to perpetuate the falsity that you will never amount to anything and as you sink deeper in the pit of despair, you start to believe this. The devil will use any tool or person to keep you in the darkness.

The truth is you are so worthy that Jesus died for you, nailed to a cross, so you could be set free from the lies of the enemy.  In Psalm 139:14 (NIV) it says:

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful.

God created you. You are not just a hap-hazard design with flaws. You are loved by the King. He knows everything about you. He knows when you get up and when you sleep. He knows your thoughts. He knows your dreams. He knows everything about you and all he wants for you is His very best. His son, Jesus. 

And understanding that you were created by a loving Father in Heaven and that he sees you, even in your hurting, he is there to help you overcome. When you can reach out to others, who have been in similar situations, it is very helpful because then you have a support team that understands exactly what you are dealing with, how you are feeling, what causes you fear and how to get help.

Loving yourself and being happy with your self is the first step to leaving an abusive relationship and this does not necessarily mean that it is a partner relationship. It could be a toxic person in your life that at one time was your friend. You changed and you grew and they are still stuck, by their own choices. The only person you can change is yourself.  You can’t fix anyone else. You can offer solutions, but ultimately, they have to be willing to take that first step.

I would recommend to anyone that is dealing with hurts, hangups and habits to check out Celebrate Recovery.

Proverbs 3:5 New Living Translation (NLT)

5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.

Dear Lord Jesus,

I ask that you bless each person that reads this post. Touch them in a way only you can Father. Show them that you have everything under control and everything that happens in their lives, you will use for good according to your purpose and plans. Jesus, You are the Light of the World and Light always penetrates darkness.  Thank you Father God for loving us, even when we don’t know how to love ourselves.                                                 In Jesus name,  Amen

 

 

 

 

 

When God Kisses Wounds

I really enjoyed this message of God’s love for us.

As He is...so are we

It was like every other day since I was infected. Always crying “Unclean! Unclean!” took a toll…on the soul as well as the throat. I don’t know how I contracted it but I did and I pay for it daily. The only comfort comes from those similar. Society has shunned us as a whole and the leaders of the day have scowl that rivals any rabid animal. “Get away from here,” they foam. “Don’t infect us you unclean vile,” they spew. Don’t they know we are still people? Don’t they know are souls still feel regardless if our body does? Don’t they know we were created in the same image of the God they supposedly worship?

Then one day a man, an altogether different Man, walked by. He was different is the best possibly way. As I cried “Unclean!  Unclean!” He seemed unfazed. Ignorant maybe. Who knows? It doesn’t matter…

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