About Me

Friday, October 28, 2016


"I didn't know she was part of our congregation." My husband said as we left the church.
Hotdogs were fitting for our Fellowship Lunch as Wilma Briggs, All American Girls Professional Leauge baseball player, shared her story.
My son was riveted as Willie unfolded her history. Her dad taught her to  bat and field better than the boys. When she wasn't stealing bases she was milking cows.

Pictures and memorabilia were passed around as she gave details about the movie, A Leauge of Their Own, directed by Penny Marshall.
"I'm in the scene when the credits roll," Wilma said.
Impressive. A movie star and Professional Baseball player. I thought to myself.
Wilma picked up the antique bat. "I led the league in home runs in 1953,"
So why hadn't I heard her story in the past?
You can find her short Television interview  here.
I gave Wilma a hug and thanked her for sharing her remarkable story.
Am I so caught up in my life that I am oblivious to my brothers and sisters in my church?

I do know a few fascinating people in my church, even if they didn't play Professional Baseball.
Jill came here from the Philippines a few years ago. She
speaks perfect English now and has learned to navigate the highways and byways of Rhode Island. Ask her about the shovel on her roof as she left the fire station.  She is a remarkable wife and mom.  She makes her curtains, and I look forward to her cooking at potluck dinners. She spearheaded a book collection drive to send books back to her homeland.  I learned that people in the  Philippines put up Christmas decorations in September . I love learning about her culture.
We have a security guard who works for Gillette Stadium He stands shoulder to shoulder with professional ball players and famous singers. 
My congregation has many business owners, and a doctor for the State of Rhode Island. I wondered why this doctor would get up in the middle of service. He has the final say for hospitals to administer certain  life-saving shots.

Each person is fascinating. I want to make it a point to spend time with my brothers and sisters here on earth, Afterall, we will be spending eternity with each other.
What fascinating people sit in the pew next to you?
Join the conversation.

Sunday, October 16, 2016


"She needs you to back off, she knows what she is doing. She is too afraid to say anything to you. She loves you and does not want to hurt your feelings."
 Lisa said to me as we discussed our mutual friend Mary and the upcoming Christmas Party.  My heart was broken. 
I was new to the church and wanted to make friends and get involved. I met a wonderful woman named Mary. She was sweet, kind, and had the gift of hospitality (sound familiar).

We decided to plan a Christmas get together at her house.  She was eager for me to help. Little did I know she did this every year and it was the highlight of many people's Christmas.  Being the zealous party planner that I am, wanting to fit in and carry my load I called her to offer ideas and assistance.  The next Sunday we spoke after Church.  The following week I called to say hi and discuss the details of the upcoming party.  She seemed hesitant of my ideas.  I was confused. 
 Are we planning this together?  I thought.   
After my phone conversation with Lisa, I realized that my motive was to be admired. I never inquired about Mary's talents and abilities, I just wanted to show off mine.
I picked up the bible and through tears of repentance, I read Philippians 1:9-11 NIV. 

And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight,  so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.

As I prayed to have love and a delicate discernment is all situations, especially with Mary, God gave me the wisdom to call her and apologize.   
She apologized for not speaking with me first.
The party was wonderful.  We sang Christmas Carols, ate great food and thanked God for Jesus.  I understand why everyone looked forward to Mary's party.
Mary and I are still great friends. Lisa too. 
The evil one would have loved us to remain in the unspoken hurt and pain, putting an unseen wall between us. (Tweet This)
When love meets discernment, the fruit of God's glory and righteousness is revealed.
When did you need discernment?   
Join the conversation.

Friday, October 7, 2016


"My life's been on hold for 3 years" my exhausted friend said.  She cared of her elderly parents.
"Now that they are with Jesus I can continue my life, I loved taking care of them, I miss them, but now I can continue with my life."
Another friend stated,
"This  knee surgery put my life on hold for the least six weeks."
I made the same statement to myself as I stood in Trauma Unit one of Rhode Island Hospital. As machines beeped, doctors performed a tracheotomy behind me, and a woman coded in the next room, I stared at my sister laying on a cold metal table in a neck brace.
My sister needs me, I have to put my life on hold to take care of her.
Ninety minutes prior, she was rear ended by a pick up truck that fled the scene.
After examination, the doctor determined she had a small fracture in her neck.
The physicians did not know the extent of the damage.
Thoughts rushed through my head as I held my sisters hand.
How can I take care of her? My book, On Hold. Speaking, On Hold. Coffee with friends, On Hold. 
I felt guilty for thinking about myself and not my sister.
The Holy Spirit impressed upon my heart, This IS your life, Your life is NOT on hold.  YOUR plans may be temporarily on hold. I am with you, guiding you and teaching you through this experience. You are here for a
reason. You are here to pray for your sister and others.
I began to pray for those around me. The man behind me now can breath.
The woman in the next room was saved by the electric paddles.
The scared family and friends in the waiting room. I told them I prayed for them, I saw an instant peace as their shoulders dropped and they smiled.
I was part of Gods plan through prayer. (tweet this)
Now, my sister is out of her neck brace and I am back to my schedule.
I thank God for the valuable lesson I learned that day and for allowing me to be part of His plan.
MY schedule may be altered but my life is never on hold.

Friday, September 23, 2016


“You just have to forgive yourself,” my friend told me.  I sinned against God and a close friend.
My heart broke.  I know God forgives, but forgiving myself?  Somehow that did not sit right in my spirit.  However, I would repeat the phrase to others when they felt the lack of forgiveness.

You just have to forgive yourself.
 What does this mean?  Is it biblical?
 Through prayer and study, the Lord revealed to me why my spirit was unsettled about the statement.

As a believer, I know sinning against God is inevitable.   Even the Apostle Paul confessed his struggle.
"For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing" Romans 7:19
What did the apostle Paul do when he encountered his own sin?
“What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!"  Romans 7:24-25
He acknowledged his sin.
He acknowledged the need to be rescued from it.
He thanked God for Jesus' deliverance.

He did not forgive himself.
As I continued to study I heard these questions echo in my head.
Did you hang on the cross?
Was the sin of the world put on you?
Did you endure excruciating pain?
Are you God?
Tears filled my eyes as I exclaimed
“NO! NO! NO! NO!”
You did, Lord, You were the one.”
I remembered the following verses.
“He himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness;”1 Peter 2:24
"For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all people."  1 Timothy 2:5-6

Why do people say, “You must forgive yourself?”   In my case it was ignorance. I repeated what I learned. 
I claimed 1 John 1:9- If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

But, I still felt tormented by the guilty feelings of sin. I sincerely repented, so why the angst?
A former pastor helped me to understand, "When we sin against God, it leaves a spiritual wound. The wound needs to heal. The feeling is the healing process. God is not condemning us."

I no longer say, "You must forgive yourself". I acknowledge my sin before God and claim His promises of forgiveness and acceptance.
I thank and praise God for the finished work of Christ on the
Cross.   I run into his arms and  receive the healing.  
 I would love to know what you think about this topic.
Have you ever told someone or yourself, "Forgive yourself?"
Join the conversation.

Friday, September 2, 2016


Unmet expectations can cause angst, as we discussed last week

My son is autistic. When life does not go as he expects, the closest object can become a projectile and his body shakes as he sobs.
His therapist stated,
"Michael is already at the playground sliding down the slide in his mind, his expectation becomes a reality to him before the activity occurs."
My heart broke for my son. I understood. 
I visualized situations playing out in my head, only to have my hope dashed against the rocks of disappointment.
With help from his therapist and Scripture, Michael and I began to realize the difference between reality and expectation.

In the Bible, the word expectation is interchangeable with the word hope.
Hope is not wishing,  it is a quiet confidence in knowing.
I did a Bible study on the word expect. Holy Ghost goose bumps appeared when I found the word in the least likely place...
 Rahab the prostitute expected great things after she met the spies in Jericho  Joshua 2
The spies made a promise to her, they would rescue her only if the red chord remained in the window upon their return.
Her situation did not immediately change when they left, men probably still wanted her services. She waited at least three weeks but kept her focus on the chord.
The word for chord here in Joshua is Tiqvah
My son has named one of his stuffed animals Tiqvah.
Blue letter Bible has another meaning for it besides chord

 hope, an expectation

Nowhere else in the bible is Tiqvah used for chord or rope.

God is so good to use the word expectation and chord together.  Rahab's expectations were not dashed against a rock or torn down when the walls around her fell at her rescue. Her expectation became reality.

Rahab stated  in Joshua 9 &11 -I know that the Lord has given you the land, and that the fear of you has fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the landmelt away before you. And as soon as we heard it, our hearts melted, and there was no spirit left in any man because of you, for the Lord your God, he is God in the heavens above and on the earth beneath.
Her story continues

Matthew 1:5-6   Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse, and Jesse the father of King David. 
Jesus was in the lineage of King David.

Rahab looked to God for her hope not the actions of people or situations.
I want to learn from her.
How about you?
What do you put your hope in?
Join the conversation.


Friday, August 26, 2016


I LOST IT!   It’s gone.   I was so upset I refused to look for it.
However, If I did not find it, my family would be in dire need of emotional repair.

What did I lose?   What is this thing that could bring pain and destruction to my family?

My temper… My Self Control. ….my mind!

  I pray you will continue to read this knowing that I am a flawed follower of Christ.  
I crush the fruit of the spirit because I want my own way.
 I  long to react to every defiant answer from my child, or flippant remark from a loved one, with a gentle answer;
Even when they don’t.

Our family verse is
  “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1

  So why did I lose it this morning?  Why did I yell?  
I asked my son three times to brush his teeth. His reply,
"Not right now."
"You're  going to be late for school."
"Just one more minute." he said as he turned the tv louder.
"NO, NOW!"
I shut the TV off mid-show. "No more TV before school."
He stormed out of the room, brushed his teeth and left for the bus stop.

I felt horrible.
I searched my Bible for verses on anger,

“Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.” Ecclesiastes 7:9
 I don’t want to be a fool anymore.

Wait!   The verse says “resides in the lap of fools”,

There still may be hope for me after all.
The Hebrew word for “resides” is

  nuwach  -    which means  rest, settle down, remain.        

Anger does not need to remain. 

I visualized the anger falling from my lap crashing to the floor.
 I need to stand.
Stand up against foolishness. My foolishness.

So how do I stop acting like a fool?
Anger goes deep. Getting to its root is vital for change.

My friend, Cecil Murphy, describes it this way”

I get angry when my son does not act as I expect .
I get angry when no one listens to me.
Lord, I expect respect, is that too much to ask?
I continued my prayer with Psalm 139:23-24

“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.  See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.’ Psalm 139:23-24
God revealed my sin to me.  That morning my anger was seeded in unmet expectations. 
I expect my son to behave and respect my request every time. When he disobeyed, I resorted to screaming. Instead, I needed to be firm with my words and give consequences.  

I endured verbal wrath from my biological father. I don't want to parent like him.

I am glad God doesn't treat me like I treated my son that morning. 
When my son returned home, I asked for forgiveness. 
God and I are still working on my unbalanced expectations.
Next week I will go deeper into what He's teaching me.
What makes you angry?

Join the conversation.

Friday, August 19, 2016


“STOP!” I screamed as I grew more frustrated.  “I can’t focus! How am I going to get this book done?"
 I have ADHD.   I did not realize I had it until my son was diagnosed with it 10 years ago.  
Finally, I had an answer to my fidgeting, lack of concentration, unfinished projects (Tweet this)
and my urge to blurt things out during a conversation because I'm afraid the words will escape me.
 I knew I needed focus and discipline to finish the book.

   What happens when ADHD meets discipline?  I liken my thoughts to a squirrel scrambling to collect nuts.  There are so many that he stops in his tracks.  “Which way do I go?”  “Which nut do I focus on first?  Which one is the biggest?"
  I am that squirrel, with  a hundred  thoughts flashing around in my brain.  What chapter to I focus on today?   What will touch the reader’s heart?  What Bible verses do I use?  LUNCH!

“Lord, I need your help!”  I knew God would not call me to write and then leave me scurrying about gathering up words that don’t make sense.
Image result for SQUIRREL My biggest problem is finishing a task.   I continued to pray.
 A friend of mine mentioned a Discipleship Counseling Course that he completed through Eternity College.  The course was free.   I like free.   I signed up and found myself with ten hours of homework each week.  Homework that would change my life forever.
 We had to complete the book, “You Can Change” by Tim Chester.  The book states to pick one thing you want God to help you change. I chose Procrastination.  Working through the book helped me figure out why I procrastinate.  It is not just ADHD.  I lost that excuse.
It is disobedience. I know God called me to write. 
I can’t blame the squirrel for everything.  I searched the scriptures. and the next verse became my marching orders.
  “Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means.”
 2 Corinthians 8:11

I try to apply this verse daily, trusting God will keep His promise from the Scripture.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me Philippians 4:13

I made a schedule and follow it.  This keeps me focused.
Squirrels still invade my day, I have even chased a few but God gently reminds me to focus. 
Instead of chasing them I try to learn from them.
 They chase each other up and down trees, scurry across the yard, hang from the bird feeder, and gather nuts like it is a relay race.  Seems like a bunch of craziness to me. However, their work gets accomplished and they have fun while doing it.

I accept my ADHD and give God the glory for using this squirrel chaser to further His Kingdom.(tweet this)
Do you chase squirrels? What distracts you?
Join the conversation.