Monday, February 27, 2017

Call Upon the Name of the Lord ~



Hello sweet friends ~ I pray you are having a beautiful day!
This past week I was talking with my sister over the phone 
and somehow we got on the subject of our older cell phones.
My husband and I have kept every cell phone we've had from the first one we got, 
 boy have they ever changed. 
I remember the first cell phone available, it was huge!
It was like putting an oversized man's shoe up to your ear.
The thing was all battery, quite heavy and those who owned one
thought they were the cats meow. 
We didn't have the first cell phone but came along when the first flip phone with an antenna no less, became available and we thought that was pretty fine!




Can you tell that I love pink?
Every phone I've owned has been pink and I LOVED my first flip phone!
I had that phone for years, even used mailing tape to hold it together.
I was slow in getting a cell phone, but sure have enjoyed it once I took the plunge.
Texting was something I didn't do and believed I never would,
until my boss gently persuaded me into getting an iphone.
I was working with Hospice and Home Care at the time
so texting with staff was much quicker and quieter
should we be in the presence of a client.
Having never texted before I had much to l earn.
"Spell Check" has certainly caught me off guard at times
and changed words without my notice, yikes!
My very first text, to my sister praise the Lord, was ~
"I want to toilet you"
What I was wanting to say was ~
"I want to let you know. "
Spell check turned "to let" into "toilet" without my even knowing it.
When my sister texted back and asked why I wanted to "toilet" her
I was shocked!!
How thankful I was that the text went to my sister and not my boss.

♡♡♡

Whatever the conversation was between my sister and me,
it caused me to ponder on the open line we have with God in our prayer lives. 


" And he spake a parable unto them to this end, 
that men ought always to pray,  and not to faint."
*Lukes 18:1*
In this parable Jesus was encouraging His listeners
to be persistent in prayer. 
"Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving. "
*Colossians 4:2*
In order for us to have an effective prayer life
we must continue earnestly (call upon the Lord) being vigilant, alert and thankful.
Our disciplined prayer life will lead us into spiritual fitness
preparing us for God's ministry. 
"Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, 
and watching thereunto with all perseverance 
and supplication for all Saints. 
*Ephesians 6:18*
Our whole life should be a life of prayer.
We are to "continue steadfastly in prayer." 
*Romans 12:12b*

♡♡♡

As children of God, we are privileged to call upon the Name of the Lord
anytime of the day or night and He has promised in His Word
that He will hear our petitions and answer according to His will. 
When calling on God, how wonderful it is to know that 
we will never have to pay for a call ~ there are no busy signals ~
never a wrong number dialed ~ He doesn't hang up on us ~
 we will not be put on hold AFTER having listened to the recording first ~
and the lines are NEVER down.
God's ears are attentive to our prayers 24 hours a day ~ 7 days a week. 
" The Lord hath heard my supplication, 
the Lord will receive my prayer."
*Psalm 6:9*

"Hear my prayer, O Lord, and give ear unto my cry."
*Psalm 39:12a*

"If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me.
But verily God hath heard me: and hath attended
to the voice of my prayer. 
Blessed be God, which hath not turned away my prayer,
nor his mercy from me."
*Psalm 66:18~20*

When we are listening to God, (who is on the other end of the line you might say)
through the reading of His Word, and we are sensitive to our sins
we will find ourselves constantly confessing our wrong doings.
Verse 18 is telling us,  that if we refuse to repent
 (express sincere regret or remorse about our wrongdoing or sin)
or harber and cherish certain sins, then we are placing a wall
between us and God.
No, we may not always remember every sin we have committed,
but our attitude toward life should be one of confession and obedience
so as to keep those prayer lines open.
Are you experiencing the joy of living in close relationship with God
through your prayer life?
 May our prayer lives be as that of David's,
"I give myself unto prayer."
*Psalm 109:4b*


"Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray,
and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice. "
*Psalm 55:17*
Amen.

Praise God!
~ Debbie ~

Monday, February 20, 2017

Puppy Love ♡


Hello precious friends!
I trust that you had a beautiful Valentine's Day ♡
I was sick all week, but I wasn't about to cancel a special tea party I had scheduled.
This Valentine's tea party was for my dear Stephenie and her little one,
but the Lord in His goodness made it possible for my dear husband's
schedule to change allowing him to join us.
Of all the tea parties I have hosted this was my husband's first and he loved it,
with the exception of the tea. 
My husband is Canadian, yet he has never acquired the taste for tea.
It was while living in Canada and spending much time visiting with the elderly
that I came to enjoy a good cup of tea.
Visiting these elderly ladies was how I came to learn
of tea parties and fine china.
Isn't it wonderful the way the Lord brings others into our lives
so that we can learn many beautiful things?


 I found these adorable dog dishes at Pier 1 Imports 
and although I really didn't need them
I just knew my grandsons would enjoy them .
It is a perfect set, complete with four plates and four matching drinking glasses.
Each plate is decorated with a different dog picture and is so adorable!
When my oldest daughter's three boys come for their next visit
I will host a tea party for them as well. 
I'm thankful my grandsons enjoy having tea with their Gamma.



I made heart ice cubes and served raspberry mint lemonade.




The color red was my prominent color in decorating ~




I usually decorate with soft colors and plenty of lace,

but for the boys I went with reds. 
That's partly why I purchased this adorable set.
My grandsons enjoy the finer things that grace the table  at a tea party,
but a tea party is usually on the feminine side, wouldn't you agree?
Though these dishes are adorned with hearts, 
they will get used a lot I'm quite sure. 



We played Valentine's Bingo ~



I prepared sandwiches made more for the guys.

BLT rounds ~ roast beef  with horseradish sauce ~ heart shaped grilled cheese ~



Potato fans made with mini potatoes ~




Of course we had to eat our veggies!

They always taste better with ranch dip, don't you think?



Many dainty desserts to choose from.
Strawberry tarts ~ mincemeat tarts ~ maid of honor tarts ~
strawberry french cream pastry puffs ~
chocolate covered strawberries ~ 
and of course, cherry scones served with clotted cream and lemon curd.
What would a tea party be without a scone?
A dear friend gifted me with some dried cherries from Michigan 
and oh are they ever delicious!



Gifts were shared around the table.
Stephenie gifted me with a beautiful lavender sachet that she made.
It found a special place rather quickly
and looks gorgeous hanging with many of my lace scarves.


This was the first use of Stephanie's tea cozy that I purchased
from her lovely etsy shop Rose Petal Blessings.
I LOVE the embellishments!
I was amazed at how warm my tea pot stayed
keeping the tea quite hot for a long time.

♡♡♡

It was a lovely Valentine's tea party!
What were some of your memory making moments
this Valentine's Day?
Thank you for stopping by, I always enjoy your visits.

♡♡♡

" Praise ye the Lord: for it is good to sing praises unto our God;
for it is pleasant; and praise is beautiful."
*Psalm 147:1*

Joy!
~ Debbie ~


Monday, February 13, 2017

Love One Another ~



" This is my commandment, that ye love one another, 
as I have loved you. 
Greater love hath no man than this, 
that a man lay down his life for his friends. "
*John 15:12-13*

♡♡♡

February 14th is a day in which we celebrate LOVE~Valentine's Day.
Cards are sent out, chocolates are given, flowers adorn our homes
by those who graced our hearts with their love.
I know for myself, I enjoy blessing others by sharing my love and gifts, 
but I enjoy being remembered just the same. 
I'm not one to buy chocolates for myself, 
but there is something beautiful in receiving one of those
fancy red velvet heart shaped boxes filled with delicious chocolates. 
I enjoy storing sentimental little keepsakes in those heart boxes once emptied, 
then years later sit and pull out those keepsakes 
that have been tucked away and look back over sweet memories.
Do you reuse your heart shaped candy boxes for anything special?


LOVE...
Valentine's Day is a time when we can show others how much we love them
with little acts of kindness.
May we have big hearts spending the day looking for ways to love on others.
To you, my graceful followers, love and hugs are sent your way 
with best wishes for a special Valentine's Day.

♡♡♡

As Christians we must strive to love sacrificially, just as Jesus did.
Paul taught the Ephesians to walk in love ~
"And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, 
and hath given Himself for us an offering and a sacrifice 
to God for a sweet smelling savor. "
*Ephesians 5:2*
~~
The love that believers have for one another should be a selfless
effort to meet each other's needs~in a way that
let's the world know who we really are. 
"By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, 
if ye have love one to another. "
*John 13:35*


We see Jesus' love manifested in His substitutionary atonement ~
"We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us"
"For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, 
that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, 
but have everlasting life."
*John 3:16*
For God so loved the {whole} world...
His love spreads to every tribe and nation,
to every believer and non-believer and His love is without measure.
Oh the wonderful love of Jesus!
Have you received the love of Jesus?
"For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world,
but that the world through him might be saved."
*John 3:17*
Jesus laid down His life for us,"herein is love."



As believers in Christ we should display our mutual love by humbly
meeting one another's needs.
John expressed brotherly love's practical implications 
in 1John 3:17-18 ~
"But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need,
and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him,
how dwelleth the love of God in him?
My little children, let us not love in word,
neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth."
In the book of 1John chapter 3 verses 7-21 
John says "God is Love" these are tremendous Scripture verses
that instruct us on how to love one another, for love is of God; 
and every one that loveth is born of God and knoweth God.
If we say that we love God, then we will love our brother also.

♡♡♡

How have you been blessed by allowing the Lord's love to shine through you?

"We love Him because He first loved us."
Amen.

Be Loving!
~Debbie~

 The hand painted items in my photo's were purchased from 
Celestina, who has a lovely Blog over at Southern Day Dreams
You will find gorgeous hand painted roses and home decor
in her beautiful etsy shoppe Rose Garden Market

Monday, January 30, 2017

A Much Loved Bunny ~

Hello my friends!
Your visits always bring joy to my day.
Thank you, for the sweet comments you so graciously bless my heart with.
The photos in this post are not in order of what I am sharing with you,
just random from the day we brought Lakota home to his passing.
God bless you!


On Tuesday January 24th the life of our precious rabbit, Lakota,
came to an end peacefully as he rested  in the loving arms of my husband. 
Lakota reached his 8th birthday two days prior to his passing,
a birthday we didn't expect him to see after a health issue
that began on December 5th over one year ago. 
A parasite (which is common in rabbits) went to Lakota's brain,
he had an inner ear bacterial infection that brought his immune system down.
Lakota then got what they call "Head tilt" a balance disease. 
Head tilt in rabbits is difficult to cure. Treatment often takes weeks
or even months of medication and supportive care.
The key is commitment,  perseverance and a lot of love.
In most cases your bunny can be back on their feet and doing binkys,
 but unfortunately that was not the case with Lakota.
You can Google or U Tube Head tilt in rabbits, but let me forewarn you, it's a sad sight. 
With the help of our veterinary and her assistant, 
we chose to care for Lakota rather than put him down. 
In many cases people will put their precious pets down
believing they will not return to normal, we were willing to go the distance
and take the chance that Lakota would be well again. 
We're thankful we made that choice, because this past year
through heartache and tears yes, but oh such enjoyment and love we experienced
as we cared for him and looked after his many needs
hopeful day after day that he just might pull out of it.
A couple of months after he was diagnosed it was looking promising 
until the parasite returned and made another attack, 
this time with no hope of coming out normal. 
But what is normal? 
No, he wasn't able to walk or even stand at times,
but he fought to be a rabbit and we owed it to him to go the distance
as long as he was willing to fight and survive. 
Lakota was willing to be a rabbit, even if it meant lying on his side
 where he found comfort with his balance.
Lakota was a brave and valiant fighter unwilling
to let go of life without a battle.
God graced our lives with over a year of precious unforgettable time spent
with our Lakota, and all the while we believed we were doing the right thing.



In the beginning stages Lakota was on critical care, 
between my husband and myself we spent many hours
feeding Lakota by syringe, which was our only hope of keeping him alive. 
Was it time consuming? Oh yes. Would we do it all over again? Oh yes.
I was no longer working with hospice due to my own balance disorder 
which freed me up to care for Lakota and his needs.
Jokingly,  I said that my role had changed from caring for people
to now beginning "Hospice for Hares."
Lakota certainly required a lot of one-on-one care and I was more than happy to give it.


Over the coarse of this past year my husband and I have learned a great deal
in the way of how to care for your Head tilt rabbit.
This may sound like a clinical post and maybe it is,
but our hopes are that we can encourage others who may find themselves in this same situation that we found ourselves in and take comfort in knowing
there are ways of helping and keeping your rabbit (or any other animal) alive
until you believe it's time to put them down.
We told ourselves that his eating or lack of would be our deciding factor
as to when the time was right in putting him down.
Lakota ate and loved to eat right up until he took his last breath. 
My husband was sensitive to the cries of Lakota in the night hours
and was blessed to hear his last cry.
He gently placed Lakota in his arms, tenderly loved on him,
until Lakota took his last breath.
We believe it was a stroke that took Lakota's life.
If you have never heard a rabbit cry you are not missing anything,
their cry is more of a scream, it's horrible!


We soon discovered ways in which to administer Lakota's food and medication
so that he was sure to consume it. 
We experimented with different amounts of high protein pellets
trying to put weight on him. We gave him Pedialite (baby electrolytes)
believing it would help replenish his body.
Towards the end of Lakota's life he wouldn't drink water
so we were forced to syringe his water. He was like a camel,
and would often times take nothing at all 
and other times drink in ten syringes at a time. 
With a lack of water he would get dehydrated causing his muscles to cramp, 
so we learned to massage him out of a cramping episode. 
We learned to do therapy (as taught from my vestibular therapist) 
for his balance in hopes it would help. 
 We believe these things made life more comfortable
for him, so to us, it was worth it all.
A rabbit needs their hay so we had to experiment with different
types trying to find what was easiest for him to grab a hold of and chew. 
The GI track of a rabbit needs to be constantly moving 
so daily we would give one tablespoon of pumpkin by syringe to Lakota.
That was one of the delights he looked forward to,
not to mention it was good for him.
Lakota went from using his own litter box to wee wee pads that we would
place him on, and believe it or not, he knew what he was supposed to do; and
even though he lost vision in his left eye and partially his right eye,
he knew to stay perfectly on that little pad circling until he found the right spot. 
At one point our daughter made a cloth eye patch that we would 
place over Lakota's right eye so as to keep it from wandering.
You see, because of his balance being off on the left side
his right eye would roll up and his balance would go with it
causing him to either fall over or do somersaults.



*I'm  going to take you down a rabbit trail for a second*
When I was seeing the vestibular therapist for my own balance problem
my therapist told me of a gentleman who's balance was so off
that he felt more comfortable standing on his head rather than his feet. Amazing!
Because I had gone through and still continue to deal with balance issues
(not vertigo by the way) our veterinarian said that Lakota
couldn't be in a better home or under better care
because I could relate to him and his balance issues,
boy was she ever right!
Many times I would catch my husband trying to place Lakota
on his right side and Lakota would scramble trying to roll over.
Till this day I cannot sleep, lay or look to my left side with out feeling off balance
which is my effected side. Lakota was the same.



Once Lakota could no longer come and go
from his home (rabbit hutch) on his own my husband made a carpeted ramp
that made it easier for him, but that didn't last long.
Soon after we tried using the ramp to assist Lakota we found that he was too
unstable falling and doing somersaults down the ramp,
we knew then that Lakota would soon became house bound, 
sort of like bed bound.  :(
Though he could pull himself up and move slowly around his cage ,
a greater part of his time was spent lying on his left side leaving him in a position where
he would be laying in his urine, not good.
We discovered that fleece (made from plastic by the way) is not absorbent, 
so we then placed the wee wee pad underneath a piece of fleece material
allowing his urine to go through the fleece and on to the pad keeping him dry.
One of the issues we dealt with on a regular basis was the thrashing that took place
with Lakota in his home.
Remember, it's all about balance, and he did all that he could to stabilize himself.
We created bumpers around his home, sort of like bumper pads in a babies crib
to prevent him from catching his feet in the bars of his home,
plus, he could use those bumpers to support himself on his effected side,
or rest his head upon  for comfort.
We were amazed at watching Lakota make adjustments
that would help him to do what was needed so he could manage as a rabbit. 
But many times my husband and I would have to make changes 
and come up with new ideas for making life easier and more comfortable for Lakota.
We created a safe haven for Lakota to live in.
Lakota would spend many hours of the day in our laps
or wrapped up in a blanket and snuggled into a covered cat bed 
belonging to our cat Toby.
Toby was kind in sharing his bed with Lakota,
just as Lakota was willing to share his home and water with Toby.


Toby and Lakota were buddies especially in Lakota's early years of life,
they would chase one another through the house,
of course Toby in the lead as I believe he was the instigator. 
Toby used his fluffy Persian tail to antagonize Lakota to run after him. 
Toby's behavior caused me to think on some verses in Proverbs ~
"It is sport to a fool to do mischief: but a man of understanding has wisdom."
*Proverbs 10:23*
"My son, if sinners entice thee,consent thou not."
*Proverbs 1:10*
During Children's Church I used Toby and Lakota as character illustrations 
pointing out the Scriptures and what they tell us about following after fools. 
My husband took pictures of the two getting into mischief
and I used those photos as my props. 
Lakota was used for the Lord in sharing the Truths of His Word.
In Psalm 148 the psalmist called everything to praise the Lord.
He included in his call sea dragons (v.7 )
beasts, cattle, creeping things and flying fowl ( v.10)
Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.
Even though animals do not praise the Lord with words,
animals bring glory and praise to God by their very existence.
They show forth God as the Creator, the Creator who loves life so much that
He creates in seeming endless variety.
With God as the Designer and Artist, I see animals to be a 
living display of the natural beauty God has built into creation,
and we have the joy and blessing of His wonderful goodness.
The psalmist was lighthearted when he described the joy animals feel ~
"There go the ships: there is that leviathan (sea creature)
whom thou hast made to play therin."
*Psalm 104:26*

"Surely the mountains bring him forth food, 
where all the beasts of the field play. "
*Job 40:20*

All things were created by God and for His good pleasure.
He gave us the pleasure and joy of caring for one of His created animals.
"For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills.
I know all the fowls of the mountains,
and the wild beasts of the field are mine."
*Psalm 50:10&11*

In this life we will in counter the good the bad the ugly
some wonderful moments sad moments hurt and pain tears and joy
and those sweet and precious moments that make life what it is.
Every day is a blessed day in which the Lord gives us,
a day for which we are to be thankful for.
We had 8 years of pure enjoyment with Lakota, our pet,
and now he's no longer with us.
But, how about life in general? 
Do we take and make every day the best that we can
with what God has graciously given us?
Are we grateful for our own lives, the lives of our loved ones
and those with whom God brings across our paths,
even if some aren't so lovely?
In this life there are seasons that come and go.
Are you graciously receiving what God places in your life with a thankful heart
and making the best of your days with those whom 
you have been blessed to share life with?
Many times it's our losses that cause us to reflect on life in a deeper way.

We received the most beautiful pet sympathy card from a dear friend and I just had to share the words with you.

A pet is a special part of your family
who will always have a special place in your heart.
They are gone from our sight...
but never our memory.
Gone from our hearing...
but never our hearts.
Gone from our touch...
But their presence is felt,
and the love that they gave us never departs.

God's Blessings

~ Debbie ~

Forever loved♡

Monday, January 23, 2017

Sweet Fellowship ~



  It's a New Year ~ new beginnings ~ a newness in life ~ why is that?
Why does the New Year create in us a desire for newness? 
I'm not quite sure, but it certainly feels good
and it sure does give one hope ~
and it sure does cause one to ponder on life
and God and our relationship with Jesus. 
That's me this year. 
Since my Balance Disorder, the work of mom and dad's
Estate sale, dad's going on to glory, looking after the needs of my dear mother, 
I have missed my walk and precious relationship with God.
Life became...
Oh, I still walk closely with my Heavenly Father, 
and I love Him with my whole heart, but I was so involved 
with the many things that needed my attention,
I was missing that closeness and endearing walk and
personal relationship with the Lord of my life, Jesus. 
Do you struggle with this?
I believe as much as we love God and want that close relationship with Him,
life has a way of robbing us from that sweet fellowship
if we're not careful.
It's easy to allow our service unto God
to take precedence over what's more important, 
a close relationship with Him.


"One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after;
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, 
to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in His temple."
*Psalms 27:4*
This New Year, my desire is to live and walk in the presence of the Lord, 
to have sweet and deep fellowship with Jesus, the Lord of my life,
like I have never experienced before. 
As I plan on putting Psalm 27:4 into practice, I will look on God's splendor and glory
in every aspect of my life no matter what God has for me in the days ahead
and learn the heart and ways of the Almighty. 
I know and believe that my God is never going to fail me,
His Word tells me so.
"That he would grant you, according to the riches off his glory, 
to be strengthened with might by his Spirit  in the inner man. 
Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly
above all that we ask our think according
to the power that worketh in us. "
*Ephesians 4:16&20*

God's riches are inexhaustible, He will supply my every need
according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
He will meet me right where I am, He will walk with me
and talk with me, as I seek after Him.
Oh the wonderful love of  my Jesus!


As I look back on these past three years,
 beginning with the episode of my Inner Ear Balance/Disorder
 I can't help but praise God. 
God commands us in Colossians chapter 3 verse 17 ~
" And whatsoever ye do in word or deed,
do all in the name of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks to God and the Father by him. "

Without offering gratitude through our circumstances in life
we can become disappointed and miss out on the joy of the Lord.
Gratitude, as we know, can play a huge part in our hearts,
it can cause us to go through the daily struggles of life
discouraged and down trodden, 
or, we can choose to sing with grace in our hearts to the Lord.


Do you desire to walk close or even closer to God?
He longs to have that close walk 
and sweet, sweet fellowship with us.
May this be a New Year ~ with new beginnings ~
and a newness in your heart for Jesus too. 

"These things write we unto you, 
that your joy may be full. "
Heavenly Father ~Your Word tells us that our joy will be full
when we maintain fellowship with You. 
May that be our hearts desire.  
Amen. 

Joy!
~ Debbie ~

☆ My journal in the photo is from my dear Stephanie's etsy shoppe
Her hand crafted items show forth her loving heart. ♡



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