Thursday, April 28, 2016

PERFECT IN GOD'S EYES

I am always sad when I hear a Christian say, “I am just an imperfect sinner saved by grace.”

As if that is all we are.

True, we ARE sinners, and true, we are saved by God’s grace, but the saving means so very much more. We need to know our identity in Christ.

One of the most exciting things about being a Christian is knowing God sees us with no flaw or imperfection because we are seen by Him through the lens of His perfect Son (Col 2:10, 2 Cor 5:21). That is given to us as a gift through the death and resurrection of Christ. That fact underlies our identity, or our position in Christ’s family.

What IS our position in Christ? Christian friends, we are heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ (Rom 8:17). HEIRS! The Bible says we are seated with God in heaven at the Father’s right hand. (Heb 10:12).

Heirs of the Creator of the Universe, with all the rights and privileges that go along with being His heirs. We are royalty in the kingdom of heaven!!! Jesus’ brothers and sisters!

Just sinners saved by grace?

Oh, so very much more than this. In many places the Bible says:

We are saved.
We are new creations.
We are rescued.
We are redeemed.
We are blessed.
We are favored
We are delivered.

We shouldn’t diminish or be modest about who we are in Christ. I believe the Lord wants us to celebrate our identity in Him.

John tells us that Christ is in us and we are in Him and He is in the Father (John 17:21). An intertwined family, with God the Father our Papa, our Abba (Gal 4:6).

I want to be a believer who calls myself not just a saved sinner, but as GOD sees me: (Psalm 5:12)

…..a richly blessed and highly favored daughter of the King!




Wednesday, April 20, 2016

WHITE TO TAUPE

Painting a house with others is a unique experience.  

Richie and I went to the Cities to help Sam and Gretchen paint the outside of their 2-story home this past weekend. God could not have created a more perfect 3 days of sun and clouds and 70 degrees, no wind. Excellent painting weather.

We were all on different sides much of the time, sometimes two of us for a time on one side. (Richie’s fearlessness on the 16-foot extension ladder painting the high peaks saved the whole project…..the rest of us were not “height” people)

What I enjoyed was the solitary nature of the work in what was definitely a group project. There was a gentle peace about the painting. It was you and your thoughts for most of the time. There wasn’t a lot of talking when we shared a side….there didn’t need to be. You have your own paint and brush and designated area and we were all concentrating on getting this job done.

Yet, the camaraderie was tight. If someone yelled “help with the ladder,” someone else immediately got down from his ladder to help. If someone yelled, “help pouring paint,” an aide appeared immediately.  Occasionally, the silence was broken with things like:

“Can you do this tighter space with your smaller hands?”
“Who needs water? I’ll go in for everyone.”
“Can someone turn the Twins Game up on the radio?”

They were wonderful easy-going help-each-other-out kind of days. We were able to finish all but part of the south side and the back side under the deck (the worst job for whoever gets it)!

I had not painted a house since we painted our cabin when Sam was a tyke of about 5 or 6. I had forgotten that it is a true test of muscle strength (which I do not have). Every muscle in my body ached including my feet from ladder standing, but I did what I thought I would never do again. I stood on the third rung of a ladder with no hanging on and balanced my body. That was a victory for my body, whose muscles are ruined by steroids.

We were honored that the kids thought we were both up to the task of two-story painting. Maybe their confidence in us is what made it all so very worthwhile and satisfying.

It was good practice for this summer's job of cabin painting. I was hoping we could put that off for another 20 years or so.




Wednesday, April 6, 2016

ANOTHER PET

Five and a half years ago, the Holy Spirit gave Dick and me the gift of faith.....the supernatural gift of unwavering faith in God's Word, in His promises for healing. Clearly, we did not know that those promises could be spread out for so many years. But we have soldiered on, not giving up on what God says in the Bible about divine healing.

That faith has sustained us and calmed us. And we are seeing the fruits of healing beginning. Of my three lung tumors, only one has some cancer activity. My four metasatic tumors were not visible. I still have fluid in the bottom of one lung, but the cancer activity in the fluid they found in the biopsy last fall is gone. 

Dick and Sam and I have all expressed that we were unusually unworried about this scan. God gave each of us individually a sense of his peace. I have felt the beginnings of healing in the past couple months.

Like Chris Tomlin's new song, which I love, says: You're a good, good Father. That's who you are.

That, He is, a good Father. 

Thank you, Jesus, for this news.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

PET PUT OFF

I have rescheduled my PET scan now for the 4th time, which means 4 doctor visit reschedules too. I have had the crud for over a week and the cough keeps hanging on. The drainage in the back of my throat is like a faucet says the nurse, but at any rate, my ability to lay flat and absolutely still without coughing is not possible yet. I thought it would be by tomorrow's PET, but by noon, I knew I had to cancel. So now I have until Monday morning to get this cough healed up.

Luckly, Sam and Gretchen both had just gotten over a week of the crud, so they were not in advoidance mode around me. It was great to have them home for Easter. A short trip, but a good one. We watched I LOVE LUCY DVD's, played games, went to Easter sunrise service and enjoyed the Easter morning breakfast afterwards. Sam got a haircut and we watched a little March Madness. (My bracket is in very sorry shape) 

I love Resurrection Sunday. Everything about my life is predicated on the fact of Jesus rising from that dark grave. It is a day of great joy, and even though I did not feel myself, I was happy to be sharing this great Resurrection Day with three of the people I love most in this world.

Gretchen and Sam have recruited us to help them paint their house in April. Weather permitting, we will go do that. I refuse to go on a ladder higher than 3 feet with my balance issues. Which pretty much assures me of not having to paint from a ladder!!!

I am progressing very slowly with my workouts. I am certain that the steroids caused muscle atrophy to a severe degree, as I still struggle to get ahead. But I am at the health center every other day and just doing all I can til my muscles burn. 

Have a wonderful springy April, y'all.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

THIS 'N THAT

Richie and I just returned from a week's vacation in Branson, Missouri. It is a long jaunt of 9 hours each way, but it was good to "get outta Dodge" for awhile. While there we saw two shows; one of which was absolutely fantastic. So good, that at intermission I had tears falling from my eyes and I said to my husband, "I am so glad God let me live long enough to see this show!!!" We left the theatre thinking we will probably never see a show this good again. That is worth the trip.

I detest shopping and though we had a new mall and an outlet mall close by our condo, our sum total shopping purchase was 3 pairs of $50 shorts for Richie, all on clearance for $9 each at Haggar. The more I go into these outlet stores to look, the more I just shake my head. There is so much "stuff" in so many shoppes that people fill their lives with that would stifle me. I guess I am just content with what I have.

Our condo was two flights up from our car, and though there was an elevator, I challenged myself to walk the flights, which in my former life I would have run up and down. Steps are still very hard and slow. I had to stop after 1 flight to let the "burn" settle down for a second, but I kept at it each time we left in the car. It got easier as the week went on. And today we went to the health club and I was so happy to see my stair improvement. Maybe after another 6 months, I will again be able to run and down stairs.

On the way to Missouri, we spent an afternoon and night with my sister-in-law and brother-in-law in Kansas City. They invited our niece and nephew and their families over to see us and have dinner with us. It was a precious family time with people we do not get to see often enough.

I am going to an ENT on Monday. My hearing loss from radiation is getting worse all the time and I am always feeling like I need to pop my eardrums like when you fly. Dick has wondered whether my inner ear could have something wrong with it....something fixable. So I thought I would get it checked out. It would be amazing if my condition were treatable. Otherwise, I need to get a hearing aid very soon.

I have another PET scan of my lungs the end of the month. It will be interesting to see those results.


Thursday, February 25, 2016

MRI WEIGHS IN

My little family is relieved. I had a good report on the brain scans. God is slowly healing my brain. The Glory belongs to Him.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

ONLINE GIFT

I love listening to challenging sermons on-line during the week. Most larger churches archive their sermons with summaries so you know what the subject matter is. I am a huge fan of Pastor Les Beauchamp of Lifegate Church in Omaha. I was smitten the first time I listened to him in person while visiting his church....was writing so fast to capture everything he said. He is an amazing teacher. They have other preachers on their staff who are also very good, but Beauchamp is the one whose sermons I seek out. He is a gifted and anointed Spirit-filled preacher.

Dick and I found a series on healing that we just listened to. The American Christian denominational churches of today have failed in teaching their flocks about the biblical truths of divine healing. (Beauchamp's church experiences healings every week) His teaching in this series was brilliantly crafted with the truth from God's Word. We soaked it in!

All of this is not to stand on any kind of soapbox, but to say that this ability to access great teachers by a few mouse clicks is a lifegiving gift from this digital age!