From the Rising of the Sun

“Blessed be the name of the LORD from this time forth and forevermore.

From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD’S name is to be praised.

The LORD is high above all nations, and His glory above the heavens.

Who is like unto the LORD our God, who dwells on high,

Who humbles himself to behold the things that are in heaven, and in the earth!

He raises up the poor out of the dust, and lifts the needy out of the ash heap;

That He may set him with princes, even with the princes of his people.

He makes the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children.

Praise you the LORD.”

Psalm 113: 2-9

The Microwave Treatment

Sometimes it’s hard to wait when you’re praying for something special to happen, and I know what that feels like…

Once, while I was waiting for my miracle, I had a dream. It had been about 6 months since I had surgery and I was growing more and more impatient about having a baby. I thought I’d get pregnant right away. But that’s not what happened.

One night, I had a very interesting dream

There were two parts to this dream. First, I dreamt that  my husband and I were visiting some friends for dinner and as the men talked in the living room, I sat in the kitchen while the food was being prepared. I was shocked to see that my friend was spooning raw, runny, red, hamburger meat, into taco shells and placing them in the microwave to be cooked. “YUCK!” I thought to myself, and when she had finished cooking, she topped them with all the trimmings, but I just couldn’t bring myself to eat any, because I saw the way that they were prepared with raw meat, and this really grossed me out!

In the second part of my dream, I was in a meat shop, and I was trying to buy a beef roast which was turning slowly on a spit. I was in a hurry, and I told the man cooking the meat that I had been waiting a long time, and was ready to go. He looked at me and said “I’m sorry ma’am but it’s not ready yet. I said  “Are you sure? It looks like it’s done.” then he pulled out a long sharp-pointed thing, and pierced through the meat, and all of this red, runny, gook came pouring out. He was right. The meat was not ready… It was as if both parts of the dream had the same meaning.

When I woke up, I thought that maybe this dream had something to do with my healing from surgery, and  how  I was not yet healed up enough on the inside.

A few days later, I was sitting in the park, watching  my son and daughter at soccer practice, when I saw a friend from church. She asked me how I was recovering from the surgery.  I told her that I was doing fine, but that I was really ready to have another baby, “After all”, I said “I’m 35 years old!”…She was nearly 50, and told me that I was still young enough to have another baby.  “God’s timing is perfect… Just be patient!..I had my last baby when I was 40 years old. ” she said. I smiled, shrugged my shoulders, and said, “But I’ve been waiting so long already.”  Then she said, ” Faith, you just had surgery… You need time to heal.”  She laughed and said jokingly, .. “What you want is the Microwave Treatment!!

When she said this, I knew that it was a confirmation of the dream that I’d had a few days earlier… “The Microwave Treatment”… It was true! I didn’t want to wait any longer.. I wanted my miracle,and I wanted it now! This instant… In fact, I wanted it yesterday!!

I was reminded by this incident, that God is in control, and I accepted that He knows best. I would just have to be patient and wait…

Three years later, I realized my miracle, and was expecting our little girl.

“Wait on the LORD: be of good courage…”

Psalm 27:14

The Hat Rack

Years ago, when I was in my late twenties, my husband and I were visiting a new church for the first time, and an elderly lady came up to us and invited us to her house for dinner, following the service. We gladly accepted her invitation, and followed her home.  As we sat in her living room, we shared in a very pleasant conversation, getting to know a little more about each other.. She was a long-standing member at her church and was well-loved by her church family.  Although it was very apparent that she was elderly, her speech and expressions were vibrant, and she was very happy to talk about how much she loved the Lord, and how much He had done for her, as she enthusiastically shared some of her many testimonies. My husband and I each talked a little about our faith experience, and  I mentioned how our two children, a baby and a toddler at the time, were miracle babies, and that I was believing God for another one.

She looked at me, with a smile in her eyes, and said, “You see that hat rack over there on the wall?” I answered, “Yes.” she said, “Whenever the Lord does something for me, I imagine that I’m hanging a hat on a hat rack…and everytime He answers I just keep adding a new hat.  And the next time I find myself frustrated about something that I’m praying for, I  just take a look at that hat rack, and I see all those hats hanging there, and I’m reminded of all the prayers that God has answered, some that I may have even forgotten, and I am encouraged that He did it before and He’ll do it again.” I really appreciated this example and made an effort to apply it in my own life. In fact, God did answer my prayer, and miraculously blessed us with another sweet baby girl!

Now, when I think back on this example, it reminds me of what young David said to King Saul, when he volunteered to fight Goliath…

“David said… The LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, He will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine…” I Samuel 17:37

The lion and the bear were hanging on David’s hat rack!!! He just took a look back, and was fully persuaded, that God would do it again. :)

Has it been a while since you’ve taken a look at your own hat rack?

Surely God has blessed you and answered your prayers in the past… Just take a look back, and like David be fully persuaded that God will do it again.

Wow! What a Woman! Part II

Just when her faith had risen to a new level, it would be tested…

A few years later, her son was out in the field with his father, when he began complaining of a severe headache. His father told one of the servants to take the young boy to his mother. The child laid his head on his mother’s lap until around noon, and then  died…

The woman took her son up to the room that she had made for Elisha, and laid him on the bed. She closed the door, went out, and called for her husband. Then she asked him to send her one of the servants and a donkey, so that she could go and see the man of God. She said she would hurry and return soon. Her husband asked  why she was going to see the man of God.. She didn’t say anything except, “It shall be well.”  She quickly saddled her donkey, and  left to see the prophet.

As she approached Mount Carmel, the man of God saw her coming and sent his servant, Gehazi, to meet her and ask what was wrong. He told him to ask if it was well with her husband, and if it was well with the child. When Gehazi asked her these questions she replied, “It is well.”  When she approached the prophet, she got off her donkey, and fell at his feet. She cried out, “Did I ask you, my lord, for a son?.. Did I not say, do not lie to me?”  Elisha sent his servant away immediately to go and see about the child, but the woman would not leave without him, so he returned with her.

When Elisha arrived at the house, the boy was dead and lying on his bed. He stretched himself out on the child, and the child became warm… He got up and walked around a bit, and then stretched himself out on the child again, and this time the boy sneezed seven times, and opened his eyes!

Gehazi called for his mother, and when she came into the room, she fell at Elisha’s feet, and bowed herself to the ground. She picked up her son,…. And walked out.

Wow! What a woman of faith! Fear and faith cannot operate at the same time… This woman showed incredible faith in the face of a situation which could have  invoked the most horrible fear. She knew that her son was a miraculous gift from God, and that God had blessed her and done what she thought was impossible… Faced with the sudden death of her son, her response was one of faith, and although I’m sure her heart was pounding, she made the immediate decision to hold her tongue, and trust God. She told her husband, “It shall be well”  and said to the prophet, “It is well.” and because of her faith, God made it so…It was well!

Stay tuned,..Part 3 next time. :)

Wow! What a Woman!

This week for Throwback Thursday, I’m sharing a 3 part story about an amazing woman with amazing faith!

Here it is…

This is one of my absolute favorites because it has every thing a great story needs. Interesting characters, a great plot with problems to be solved, and lots of surprises. I’ll be paraphrasing, but you can find this first part of the story in the book of II Kings chapter 4.

“One day there was a woman who invited the prophet Elisha to have dinner with her. He accepted and after Elisha left, the woman, convinced that Elisha was a holy man, asked her husband if they could add a room on to their house, especially for him, with a bed, a stool, and a table with  a candlestick, so that if ever he passed their way again, he  would have a comfortable place to stay. Her husband agreed. It was done, and the next time the prophet came there, he spent the night. He was moved by her kindness and hospitality, so he asked her if there was anything that she wanted him to do for her.

She asked for nothing in return, and when she left the room, Elisha asked his servant, Gehazi, what could be done for her. Gehazi mentioned that the woman was childless and that her husband was  old.  Elisha called the woman and told her that she would give birth to a son and he told her  when her son would be born. She relied, “Don’t lie to me…” but  miraculously, she gave birth to a baby boy,  at precisely the same time that Elisha had predicted.”

Let’s take a closer look at what has just happened. First of all, this woman had a very kind and hospitable spirit. She invited Elisha to have dinner with her, and then added a room to her house just for him. In scripture she is called a “great” woman, so perhaps she was wealthy, and adding a room to her house was something that she could easily afford to do. Next, she had respect for the man of God, evidence that she embraced a level of faith,… a limited level of faith, that would soon increase, and later be tested.

I refer to her faith as limited because, when Elisha asked her what he could do for her, she asked for nothing…She believed in God, but her faith appears to have its limits… Was it really true that she didn’t want anything… He was a prophet after all… She knew that he was a man of God, a holy man.  She had said so herself.. What was it that she really wanted? Could it be that she had given up on the hope of ever having a child?… Did it seem to be too impossible of a request? Whatever the case.She didn’t ask… It was Elisha’s servant who mentioned that she was childless, and even when Elisha told her that she’d have a son, her reply was, “Do not lie to me”… Because to her, it seemed to good to be true..

Her faith would soon increase to a whole new level, throughout the months in which she carried her son in pregnancy, gave birth to him, and delightfully embraced him in her arms.

Tomorrow, Part 2 :)

Just One Drop

It’s Throwback Thursday and here’s a story that I posted  several months ago. I love to think back on this story, and I hope that it will be a blessing, as I share it with you today!

My youngest sister was getting married, and the wedding took place just before I was scheduled to have surgery. It was a beautiful wedding, and one of the special moments was watching my sister’s soon-to-be mother in law, walk down the aisle to be seated. She entered gingerly, because she had been very ill, and had traveled a long way in order to attend. I’m not sure what her illness was but you could see in her eyes the love that she had for her son, and how determined she was to be a part of this very special day. She leaned heavily on the arm of the usher who was escorting her in, and slowly made it to her seat. After the wedding, I had a chance to sit and talk with her.

It was my very first time meeting her, so I introduced myself and told her that I was so glad that she was able to come. I asked her how she was feeling and she told me a little about her condition. She mentioned how the Lord had blessed her, and that without Him she couldn’t have made it. She spoke of some sort of blood disorder, I’m not sure of the details, but what she said next would have a great impact on me. She said that she prayed that Jesus would bless her with” just one drop of His blood”, because she knew that by His stripes we were healed. “Just one drop” she said, and she would be fine. I told her about my upcoming surgery and, being a woman of great faith, she encouraged me, and told me to trust in the sacrifice that Jesus has already paid for us.

The day of surgery arrived and I got up early to spent some time in prayer. I rehearsed in my mind all of the verses which had given me peace as this day approached,  and I asked the Lord for something specific… I knew that there was a good chance that I would lose a lot of blood during this surgery, and my doctor had ordered me to donate my own blood in advance as he was prepared to give me a blood transfusion, but I didn’t want to have a blood transfusion, so this is what I prayed,” Lord, I ask that You would bless me with just one drop of Your blood, so that I would not have to have a blood transfusion.”  After this I felt very calm and at peace. We left for the hospital.

My husband was driving and our two children, now 10 and 8 years old, were in the backseat. Although it was morning, it was still dark out, so the kids were a little sleepy. My husband’s face was sad and solemn and the children’s’ were too. They didn’t want me to have surgery and were each very  worried. I started happily singing praise worship songs and they listened in. Their faces brightened slightly, but they couldn’t bring themselves to sing along with me. I felt their love and concern for me, it warmed my heart, and I understood.

The surgery went well. I awakened to see my mother, my husband, my son, and my daughter, all looking down at me in anticipation, and I thought that was kind of funny. I was also relieved and happy that the surgery was over!  The doctor came in and said that there were 18 tumors instead of 2 or 3, and that I had lost a lot of blood.   “Eighteen tumors?” I said. “No wonder I was in so much pain!” Then he said that although I had lost a lot of blood, he decided not to give me a transfusion, but waited until afterwards to see if it was still necessary. He said that my blood count was now back up, so I didn’t need one after all… I thought to myself “Thank you Jesus!” because I hadn’t mentioned to my family or my doctor that I didn’t want  a transfusion. This was just  between me and the Lord, and He did it! Just like I asked.

I exhaled, and felt a great big smile, deep down inside… :)

Delay Does Not Mean Denied

Delay Does Not Mean Denied…

Waiting for an answer to prayer can be hard sometimes, but I’d just like to share that although it seems that there  may be a delay, it doesn’t mean that your request has been denied.

In fact, it has been my experience that after what seemed to be a great delay, I was blessed far and away more than I was asking for in the first place! 

Here’s an example from  John 11:1-44, where Jesus raises Lazarus from the Dead:

First, a request is brought to Jesus.

“Now a certain man was sick, Lazarus of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. It was that Mary who anointed the Lord with fragrant oil and wiped His feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick. Therefore the sisters sent to Him, saying, “Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick.”

Next,  Jesus responds with a delay.

“When Jesus heard that, He said, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So, when He heard that he was sick, He stayed two more days in the place where He was.”

Then, after finally arriving in Bethany, Lazarus having been dead 3 days, Jesus comforts Martha with these words, “I am the Resurrection and the Life, he who believes in me shall never die… Do you believe this?”

And then Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead. 

(Answering their prayer in a greater way than they ever expected!)

“…They took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. And I know that You always hear Me, but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me.” Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.”

“Are you praying for something, and there seems to be a delay in receiving your answer? Just remember that God is working all things together for your good, and He is able to do “exceedingly abundantly above all that you may ask or think… So hold on, the answer’s on its way, and it promises to exceed your expectations!”  :)

The Hat Rack

Many years ago, one Sunday morning, my husband and I were visiting a new church for the first time, when an elderly lady came up to us and invited us to her house for dinner, following the service. We gladly accepted her invitation, and followed her home.  As we sat in her livingroom, we shared in a very pleasant conversation, getting to know a little more about each other.. She was a long-standing member at her church and was well-loved by her church family.  Although it was very apparent that she was elderly, her speech and expressions were vibrant, and she was very happy to talk about how much she loved the Lord, and how much He had done for her, as she enthusiastically shared some of her many testimonies. My husband and I each talked a little about our faith experience, and  I mentioned how our two children, very small at the time, were miracle babies, and that I was believing God for another one.

She looked at me, with a smile in her eyes, and said, “You see that hat rack over there on the wall?” I answered, “Yes.” she said, “Whenever the Lord does something for me, I imagine that I’m hanging a hat on a hat rack…and everytime he answers I just keep adding a new hat.  And the next time I find myself frustrated about something that I’m praying for, I  just take a look at that hat rack, and I see all those hats hanging there, and I’m reminded of all the prayers that God has answered, some that I may have even forgotten, and I am encouraged that he did it before and he’ll do it again.” I really appreciated this example and made an effort to apply it in my own life.

Now, when I think back on this example, it reminds me of what young David said to King Saul, when he volunteered to fight Goliath…

“David said… The LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine…” I Samuel 17:37

The lion and the bear were hanging on David’s hat rack!!! He just took a look back, and was fully persuaded, that God would do it again. :)

Has it been a while since you took a look at your own hat rack? Surely God has blessed you and answered your prayers in the past… Just take a look back, and like David be fully persuaded that God will do it again.

You Are Invited

“…Pray one for another, that you may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”

James 5:16

This post is an invitation for prayer requests. You are invited to do any or all of the following 3 things:

1. Post your prayer request under “Leave a comment”

2. Post a word of encouragement for someone

3. Pray for those who have posted a request

My prayer for you is that God will bless you, comfort you, and give you peace. – Amen