God Knew


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The Bible says that there is not test or trial we have to endure that is not common, normal, to mankind; and that He has provided a way to escape, so that we are able to bear it  (l Corinthians 10:13).

Image result for l Corinthians 10:13

In my trial of the moment, I’m thankful for the medication that makes the pain bearable; I’m thankful that I could take the day off work yesterday and that I’m not scheduled back until Tuesday.  I had to cancel my responsibility to speak at a women’s meeting at our church, and that was hard, but God gave me instant peace once my decision was made to cancel. I’m thankful that He provides that kind of peace.

I’m thankful that I’m fairly comfortable in bed. And I’m thankful for a husband who takes care of me when I’m down.

The way to escape?  Does that mean I could get out of this if I pray hard enough?  The He’ll just take away the pain?

When the Apostle Paul wrote those words, he’d already been through some severe trials and he would face more.Three times in the course of his ministry he was tied to a whipping post and beaten within an inch of his life. I’m pretty sure that when he was conscious, he was asking God for a way to escape. God’s answer was not to miraculously remove him from the ordeal, but to give him the grace to endure.

So, what’s this all about?  If you’ve been with me for a while, you know that I have a bunch of things wrong in my lower back. Herniations, stenosis, and degenerative disc disease. All week I’ve been pretty uncomfortable, and Wednesday evening something went bonkers back there, just about putting me on the floor. It was that “takes your breath away” kind of pain, and it came out of the blue. I wasn’t bending or twisting or trying to carry something heavy.  I was walking from one room to another. BAM!

I had my pain meds and my muscle relaxer refilled about a week ago, and I’m so thankful they were readily available.  I didn’t have to call the doctor, wait for the scripts to be refilled. I didn’t waste any time getting my first dose, and the meds have been helping a great deal. I have an appointment with my chiropractor this morning.

Tonight, my daughter is taking a mutual friend and me to hear commedienne Jeannie Robertson.  I’ve been looking forward to this, a belated birthday gift, for three months. I’m not going to miss it. So I’m thankful my back went kablooey on Wednesday instead of yesterday, because if it had been yesterday I wouldn’t have been able to do it. Partly because of the meds, I’ve had a good night’s sleep.  I’ll be moving kind of slow, but I’ll be able to do it.

See?  Even in this really kind of nasty pain, God timed everything just right.

He always makes a way, and He always goes ahead of me.  I’m not thankful for the pain, but I surely am thankful for God’s presence and help in my time of trouble.



To Agree or to Disagree


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It’s no surprise that the first thing I thought of was political disagreement.  Our country is more divided now than it was just before the Civil War.  Back then, there were only a couple of major issues. Today, it is not a matter of issues so much as is it a matter of world view.

Each faction seems terrified that the other is going to force a world view on the other that it simply cannot tolerate.

For instance, Hillary has said many, many times that the rearing of a child should be overseen by government. She has also said that “Your strongly held religious beliefs about things like abortion MUST CHANGE!”

I know that this video has been patched together to show her in the worst possible light. My purpose in using it is to highlight her determination to eradicate  “strongly held religious beliefs” from our culture. In another video, she goes so far as to say that biblical positions on abortion, for instance, are no different than things like honor killings and female genital mutilation in other cultures. We need to pay attention to her double-speak.She claims to be a Christian and have deep reverence for the Bible. Then she says that beliefs derived from the Bible have to be eradicated.

I disagree.  I disagree to the point of being willing to stand and fight if that’s what it takes.

Mr. Trump, on the other hand, seems to be saying what I agree with. For instance, I’m not against immigration, but I am deeply concerned that we need to protect ourselves against the insurgence of those who hate us and are already here, already attacking. Anyone who doesn’t see that is either delusional or just not paying attention.

My problems with The Donald are his unpleasant, to put it mildly, personal views about women who are less than Miss Universe beautiful; his inappropriate remarks about how hot his daughter is; his insulting comments on the faces and/or body parts of women. He’s not exactly an oil painting himself. It’s kind of a case of the kettle and the pot, in my opinion. But this is silly compared to our national problems, starting with the more than 20 trillion dollars of national debt that we have allowed to spiral out of control. Hillary will do nothing to improve that situation, because she’s in the pocket of the countries who hate us but that Obama has subsidized to help them make weapons to defeat us.

It seems contradictory that he does, in fact, put many women in places of heavy responsibility in his business dealings.  Maybe he just doesn’t know how to control his mouth–and that’s not Presidential behavior.  Quite a lot could be said about the morality of owning casinos, and of his personal life.

It is a sad thing that moral behavior and Presidents have often not gone together. Even the deeply revered Thomas Jefferson, Franklin Roosevelt and John Kennedy were known to have had at least one sexual affair during their tenure at the White House.  And we all know the reputation Bill Clinton has.

There has probably never been a President with whom I would agree on every single point. There probably never will be.  But I’d rather have  a President with whom I disagree only here and there, and not on every single point in the campaign platform.

And I know for sure that, as a meme going around on Facebook says,  Hillary has a list of scandals behind her that follow her around the globe, and people are concerned about Donald’s tone?  

Ach.  I just wish it were over, although I have a lot of concerns about what will happen after the inauguration next January. It’s not going to be a walk in the park, no matter who wins this awful election.

God help us. God, bring us back to You. God, forgive America.


Too Little Time


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“I have so many unfinished projects,” fretted Martha. Her mind went downstairs to her sewing area. Knitting, quilting, cross stitch, needlepoint; her fabric stash, her leftover yarn, the quilt top in a drawer that was turning yellow with age because it needed to be constructed and quilted. So many patterns, so many good ideas–and so little energy and time.

Back upstairs.  The kitchen was actually in good shape since the renovation, the cupboards organized and a lot of things tossed out that she hadn’t used in years. Still, even though she wasn’t doing much baking these days, it was too hard to let go of her pans and other utensils. Not yet. Not yet.

The bedroom?  Oh, my. Time to accept that there were things she would never fit into again, and even if she did they would be outdated and sad. Her closet and drawers needed a merciless winnowing.

Then there was the computer desk. Oy.  Paper really does reproduce overnight. She always kept up with all the bills, but there were some other matters that needed tending to in the next few days. And there were cards to send, notes to write, books to read, files to sort through.

She was beginning to understand her mom and dad a lot better.  It’s just really hard to acknowledge that you have less time left to live than you’ve already used up, and some things were just not going to get done. Fact was, she was running out of energy faster than she’d expected.

Well. She wasn’t going leave any more of a mess for her kids to deal with than she had to, so she sat down to make a plan. One drawer, one closet, one cupboard, one file folder at a time. Even if she just did one small thing each day, that would be one less thing for others to deal with when she was gone.

Now if only she could get Jim on board with her to start dealing with his own stuff.


What Should I Do Today?


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Answering KJV Onlyism | hipandthigh:

This little guy has been all over Facebook in a variety of memes, and I love his face.  It’s so easy to wonder what his dilemma might be.  Let’s see, should he. . . .play with his toes? Throw a tantrum just for the fun of it? Spit his cereal back at his longsuffering mommy?  Fill his diaper that she JUST finished changing?  Hmmmm.  Life has so many interesting options.

I suspect that the parents of this child are in for quite a ride.


Panic Attack


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A panic attack is a frightening thing.  Symptoms can include any or all of the following:

Racing heartbeat

Chest pain

Shortness of breath             panic-attack-edited


Copious sweating

Clammy, sweaty hands

Intense fear

Parasthesia  (sensation of pinpricks or tingling) usually along the arms, but anywhere else as well

The victim often believes he is having a heart attack. A severe panic attack is temporarily debilitating.  Perhaps the most difficult thing to understand is that there doesn’t need to be  trigger event. It just happens.  It’s like a mega-surge of adrenalin, and it leaves the victim worn out, weak, and needing nothing more than to go to bed.

Here’s the good news:  It passes.  As far as I know, no one has ever died from a panic attack. Here’s what to do:

  1. Don’t fight it. It will take its course, and then life returns to normal. Usually, they’re fairly short in duration
  2. Breathe deeply and slowly, in through your nose, hold, out slowly through your mouth while you count to ten, or as high as you can. Do this all through the attack.  It refocuses your mind, and helps oxygenate your body.
  3. Anti-anxiety meds are usually prescribed “as needed.”  If you have to do something that makes you feel anxious just thinking about it, take one of your pills.  Well-known meds are Zanax, Klonopin, and Atavan.
  4. Treat your anxiety as you would the school bully.  Stand up to it.  Tell it that it can’t scare you. Take charge.  It helps!
  5. If you are a person of faith, prayer is a wonderful calmer-downer. Turning to your favorite Bible passages will also help.  Here’s a favorite of mine:

“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”  Isaiah 41:10.


Selfish Sam


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“Sam, would you like a piece of pie? “

“What kind is it?”

“Apple.  Do you want some?”

“Who made it?”

Dead silence.

“Sam. Do you want pie or not?”

“Well, I guess, but it had better be a generous chunk. Don’t skimp.”

Dead silence.

“Sam, I just gave a generous portion of my homemade apple pie to the dog. Sorry–there’s not enough left for you.”



An Education Rant


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I did something today that I rarely do.  I jumped into a semi-political conversation concerning  the sad state of education in America, and the silly idea that just throwing more money at it will fix it.

We’ve been throwing tons of money into “education” for years, and I’m putting quotes around the word because much of what we invest is not spent on the actual process of teaching and learning.

I am not against extra-curricular programs. I do think they need to be entirely secondary to academics. But that’s really a side issue, in my mind. The real problem is that teachers have had their days consumed with writing up reports, special-needs programs, student discipline papers. And they are required to teach to the test, in order to keep the school’s academic numbers high and thereby keep and/or increase their government funding.

It is very hard to find the time to spend with a student who needs extra help when the teacher’s desk is swamped with all the paperwork that is required of them these days that really has nothing to do with what students are actually learning.

Then there is this problem:


The weight of power has shifted. The child no longer feels he must respect the teacher, because his parents don’t. A teacher is expected to please Junior and Junior’s obedient parents.

There’s a world-view problem going on here, not a money problem.

You will find that in school districts where parents are engaged in the process, and supportive of the teachers, the quality of the education rises.  I’ve talked to way too many teachers who are discouraged, burned out, used up, intimidated and worn out with trying to control unruly, disrespectful, and sometimes physically threatening and violent kids.

Most teachers enter their profession because they (a) love their subject and (b) have a heart for kids.  I believe a good teacher has that gifting from God, and is a priceless asset to any family. Yes, there are poor teachers who should never have entered the profession, but there are thousands more who do it because they love it, love learning, love the kids. It is sad when those teachers quit in discouragement because they get so little support from parents or, sadly, administrators who feel duty-bound to please the parents first.

Money is not the answer, and even if it were the answer, where do we go when the money runs out? Government is funded by taxpayers, not some Money Fairy that sprinkles cash liberally throughout the land. When the taxpayers are tapped out, there’s nowhere else to go, is there?

I didn’t make much money during my  teaching career. I taught in private Christian schools, and money was scarce. Parents often sent us their kids at great personal sacrifice. And yet, we got the job done. We graduated well-educated, well-rounded students who had some respect for authority, for learning, for making it on their own.

That’s what you get with a good education, even if there isn’t a fat bank account behind it.


Sexy Potato


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I dislike shopping. Despise it, actually. So I’ve learned to use a couple of internet stores that have clothing designed for women like me, women with more to love.

Only they don’t have any models like me, who are less than five feet tall.

So in order to try to be stylish, I have to  check the overall length of each garment. Dresses that fit the typical model just below the knee will be just below the floor on me. Sometimes hems are easily altered, but sometimes it’s just not possible without changing the entire look of the dress.

Pants are a nightmare. Most of my lack of height is because I have stumps instead of legs. So I look for capri-length pants, or pants that, when I whack of the length, don’t look like I whacked off the length.

Remember the  dwarf Dopey in Snow White? 


Yup, that’s me.  Sleeves too long, pants too long.  But he’s happy, so I guess it’s okay 🙂

I remember muttering to myself once that my trying to make my stumpy, lumpy body look stylish was like trying to make a potato look sexy.  My very patient husband says, “What’s wrong with potatoes?  I like potatoes.”

And maybe that’s why we’ve been married for 47 years.


A Special Treat for Me

My daughter-in-law posted this today, and it made me cry. I miss my kids. I loved singing with Mike and Janan when we could get together. I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.


Linda's Bible Study

The singers are my oldest son, Mike, and his wife Janan. The pianist is her cousin. And the song, of course, is a classic that I love.  I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.

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No Noise, Please!


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(Start the video before you read )

You do  understand, of course, that there is a difference between profound silence, where there is no noise at all, and the silence of no intrusive, unpleasant noises.

I long for the silence of no intrusive, unpleasant noise.  No sirens screaming by and making you wonder what tragedy is taking place. No horrible booming and angry ranting from cars that sit behind you in traffic. No police sirens aimed–oh no! at YOU!  No arguing, no wailing infants or toddlers. No yelling adults, cursing each other and creating ugly air.

Pleasant noise?  Well, that would be children laughing and screaming in play; that would be the sound of the ocean; it would be the wonderful susurrus of a steady rain after a drought. Pleasant noise is good music, played at top volume if I’m home alone, but reduced to a whisper if Terry is with me. We both have trouble hearing each other if other noises are in the background.

I love the sounds of a forest. Sometimes it is so still you can hear the trees breathe. It is wonderful to hear the skittering of small animals that you know are harmless. Bird song is a delight, no matter where it comes from. And I’ve always enjoyed the sound of a small river moving over small rocks. Any sound made by water is a good sound, unless it’s a tsunami or a rushing flood. Then it’s terrifying.

Utter, complete silence is hard to come by. Even when no one else is in the house and I have no music playing, no television, there is the intermittent noise of the refrigerator, the air conditioning or heating, and the homey sounds of a house settling with age like an old lady getting comfortable in her favorite chair.

Actually, I think utter, dead silence might be kind of frightening. Where there is that kind of silence, there is no life. None. Brrrrr.