Category Archives: Author’s Note
Are you looking for peace and comforting? Or maybe you are running low on hope and you feel like there’s nowhere to go, no one to turn to for help.
Don’t give up! There IS an answer!
I’ve been going through some difficult times myself lately, and there are days when I just feel so tired and worn down from all the heartache. Sometimes I feel so weak and discouraged, and I don’t know how I’ll get through the next 5 minutes, let alone the next day, week, or month.
I don’t have all the answers for all of life’s problems and trials. But I know someone that does. His name is Jesus.
I can’t begin to count the number of times I would have just given up completely if I were left on my own. I know I am not in control, I just can’t do it alone! Thankfully, I don’t have to! I learned a while back that Jesus is ALWAYS here with me, giving me strength to go on, even when I don’t feel like it. He gives me courage to face each day, each trial, each burden. He brings comfort and peace to my heart and lifts my spirit when it is broken. And He carries me through when I am too weak to move forward.
I have learned that whatever life may bring, Jesus will see me through it.
For all that are hurting and broken, cry out to Jesus! He wants to help you, and He will.
As some of you may know, I took some time off for a vacation to visit with my son and daughter-in-law in Texas, and then off to Virginia to spend some time with my parents. I arrived back home on Friday morning, then received news that my Mom passed away Saturday morning. I have returned to Virginia and do not know when I will be posting again.
I know my Mom is with Jesus now, no longer in pain or suffering, but free. It was said that she had been holding on, waiting to see Christian and I again. It had been almost 7 years since our last visit. She went peacefully in her sleep, and I am so very thankful that we got to spend time with her before she passed. I will always treasure our memories and the love we shared with her.
I allowed distance and cost to become obstacles preventing more frequent visits with those I love, and it is now a deep regret. Even though money was still an issue, God stirred my heart with a sense of urgency to come. Then He provided a way to make it happen, proving once again He is all knowing and a compassionate God. My Dad told me that our visit gave Mom peace and comforted her.
My heart is aching, but I know I must be strong now, for my family. I do not have any more words right now, except to say: never take the moments you have for granted because they will never come again, and never pass up the opportunities to say “I love you” because it may be your last chance.
Rest in peace Mom, rejoice in the presence of Jesus, and we will see you again someday. You are forever in my heart! Thank you God, for giving me the privilege of being her daughter!
Do You Really Believe in that Jesus Stuff?
A while back when driving home from church one Sunday, I overheard a conversation going on in the backseat of our van. It was between my son Christian and a couple of his friends that had been occasionally attending church with us. Their discussion had started off with statements about what had been studied that particular day in Sunday school class and I wasn’t really paying attention to what was being said at first.
For some unknown reason, my ears suddenly tuned in to their conversation just as one of the boys asked my son, “Do you really believe in that Jesus stuff?” As I heard the words coming out of Christian’s mouth, I felt the tears beginning to well up in my eyes. He answered, “Of course I do, I’ve seen Him. I sat on His lap when I died and went to heaven”.
For a moment I thought I might have to pull over as the tears began to flow. Christian seemed to take it all in stride, as if it was nothing out of the ordinary. But his friends were rather quiet for a few seconds. Then one of the boys asked, “Well what was it like, being in heaven”? Christian replied, “You know, it was the most beautiful place and there was lots of angels singing, and it was really bright. And it just felt so peaceful and good there. I didn’t want to ever leave”.
Again there was a brief silence, and then their conversation changed to the plans of activities for the afternoon. Once again I was reminded of how Christian’s perception of the world is so very different than mine. Not so long ago it was almost unperceivable to Christian that there are people in the world that do not believe in Jesus. For a while after his accident, he didn’t understand why people were so shocked when he told them that he had died and gone to heaven. To him, it seemed so acceptable and natural, because he had never had any doubt in his faith. His belief in the realness of Jesus was just as sure as knowing that day follows night, and he just couldn’t figure out why everyone else didn’t know that too.
Recently, after beginning to see and hear more about so many people that do not believe in Jesus, Christian seemed to be in a somber mood one evening. He asked me, “Mom, do you believe Jesus is real”? I was a little surprised by the question, but I answered, “Yes, I know He’s real”. He replied, “But you’ve never seen Him, so how do you know He’s real”? I said, “Because I can feel Him in my heart”. He thought about that for a moment and then asked, “Why can’t everyone feel Him in their heart and believe in Him”?
I thought back to the time before I believed and I asked myself the question, “Why didn’t I believe in Him then”? I knew about Him then, but I didn’t know Him in the personal way I do now. I remembered the painful and empty hole in my heart, a hole that had been there for almost as long as I could remember. How that hole had grown larger and more painful over the years, until it was consuming me. Even though I had read a lot of things in the bible and I knew about Jesus and what He did, I had never chosen on purpose to believe in Him. I had never invited Him into my heart. Then I remembered the night I did choose Him, and how that hole inside of me was filled with a love that I can’t explain. I can say that it is a joy like I’ve never known before, and I never want to lose it! It would be like losing the blood flowing through my veins and I would die without it.
I tried to answer Christian’s question, but it was not something that I could fully explain. I told him that a person has to choose to believe that Jesus is real and they have to open their heart to let His Spirit in. He won’t force His way in, He gives us the freedom to choose.
The question of why anyone would not choose to believe came up, and that question was easy enough to answer, but harder to explain. The answer is in the sinful nature of the heart of man. Because of that sinful nature, the heart and mind become confused and overwhelmed. The truth that can set us free (believing in Jesus) becomes hidden behind a wall of doubt and chaos. Satan keeps us in the darkness by deceiving us, trying to keep our minds focused on anything but the truth.
“Why do you misunderstand what I say? It is because you are unable to hear what I am saying. [You cannot bear to listen to My message; your ears are shut to My teaching.] You are of your father, the devil, and it is your will to practice the lusts and gratify the desires [which are characteristic] of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a falsehood, he speaks what is natural to him, for he is a liar [himself] and the father of lies and of all that is false. But because I speak the truth, you do not believe Me [do not trust Me, do not rely on Me, or adhere to Me].” John 8:43-45 AMP
As I was explaining this to Christian, I noticed the tears beginning to form in his eyes. He said, “I just wish everyone could see Jesus like I did and they would know He is real. Then they would love Him and want Him in their hearts too”. I told him that is why we tell others about Jesus’ love for us and the gift He has given us, and how He wants to give that same gift to them. We show His Spirit in us by the way we live our own life. But we cannot make anyone believe, that is a choice they must make for themselves.
I am so very thankful for Christian’s faith, and his desire to see all souls be saved. He has inspired my own faith and touched many hearts in more ways than he will ever know. I pray that fire in his heart never goes out, that the truth of Jesus continues to spread, and that hearts will be opened to receive Him. May God bless us with His Holy Spirit, creating in us a desire for revival and a passion for sharing Him with everyone around us. Amen.
Here is this week’s #TBSU List. I hope you’ll take some time to check out their sites. If you see something you like, please share. Have a great weekend, and God bless!
Very well said. But I would have to add an 8th “C”. This “C” would be necessary as the foundation on which to build the above list. Without a strong foundation, the walls cannot stand. Without the last “C”, none of the others could be prevail. The final “C” of course, is Christ Jesus.
Praying that as we go through each day of our lives, the character of our hearts is reflecting the heart of Jesus. Amen.
I’ve heard people say that the Bible is old fashioned and out of date, that it doesn’t really apply to our modern times. Really? Check this out:
Seems pretty up to date to me. God’s word is always true, yesterday, today, and tomorrow.
My son likes thinking about this way:
B.I.B.L.E. – Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth
The more I read my Bible, the more I realize I need Him more!
It’s Friday, and as promised, here is my #TBSU (The Blog Scratchers Union) List:
I pray you all have a fantastic and blessed weekend, with His Holy Spirit in your heart to guide you where He wants you to be. Safe journeys and God bless! – Amber
“Let no foul or polluting language, nor evil word nor unwholesome or worthless talk [ever] come out of your mouth, but only such [speech] as is good and beneficial to the spiritual progress of others, as is fitting to the need and the occasion, that it may be a blessing and give grace (God’s favor) to those who hear it.” (Ephesians 4:29 AMP)
Last night, an elderly woman that I admire and adore came over to me at church and prayed with me. Afterward, she hugged me and told me that I was special and that she really appreciated me and my friendship. I can’t even describe how wonderful hearing that made me feel inside! Her words caught me off guard and I didn’t know what to say, except a heart felt “thank you”. This woman’s words, though simply spoken, did so much more than just make me feel good. Her gesture also showed me just what it means to reach out to others and love them. She showed me a living example of how just a few words can say so much and do so much good in lifting up a person’s spirit. She and her daughter-in-law have been wonderful mentors to me, even if they don’t know it, and have given me great examples of what it means to be a virtuous woman. Not only in their words, but in their lifestyle as well. I greatly respect and admire both of these women, and feel very privileged and blessed to know them. And I pray that in the days to come, I will learn to follow in their footsteps with the examples they have given in living out a godly life, being helpful and edifying to others as Jesus taught.
I am not what would be considered a qualified speaker by most standards, although I can talk with the best of them. But the impact my friend’s words had in my heart last night is the kind of impact I want to share with others. I think this would fall into the category of “random acts of kindness”, and that is something the world definitely needs more of.
So, I pray today that each person that reads this will receive a blessing of kind, loving and sincere words from someone, whether it is from a friend or stranger, and that it will stir up and inspire their heart to do the same with someone else. Let our hearts be led by The Holy Spirit, and our lips always ready with His truth and love. Amen and God bless!
Good morning fellow bloggers! Well Friday is finally here, and we’re getting ready to spend another busy weekend. With Christmas just around the corner, we are putting on our final touches to the gift wrapping, baking and some much needed errands. (Being sick for the past week has put me dreadfully behind, but I’m on the mend, praise God, and trying to catch up now.)
In all honesty, I haven’t been able to keep up with the posts on here this past week, but I do have a few more blogs to add to the #TBSU (The Blog Scratchers Union) list. I do hope you will check them out, and share them with your friends if you like! And don’t forget to “like” and “follow”. It helps others to find the sites too. Thanks for helping to spread the word, and I wish you all happy blogging! 🙂
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a wonderfully blessed New Year!!!
Blogs to follow: #TBSU
(This is a re-post from my AmberLea of Alaska’s Blog)
Every since I heard the news yesterday about the tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut, my heart has been in a whirlwind. So many feelings and yet, no words to say.
As I’ve read through the Facebook posts and other media, it occurred to me, so many people are hurting and confused and angry. There have been divisions between pro and anti gun groups, people pointing fingers at one or more specific groups, grief and blame galore.
Will any of this bring those children or teachers back, or undo any of this tragedy? NO! It just keeps adding more fuel to a fire of hate, insensitivity, confusion, and it just keeps causing more hurt.
I know people are looking for answers, trying to make some sense of it all. But there is no simple explanation or solution.
But if I may, I do have a small suggestion. When a massive earthquake or hurricane hits and causes much destruction, I’ve seen firsthand how people reach out to each other, to help and support and comfort. I’ve seen total strangers step up and offer a safe, warm place to stay to those in need. And I know the power of prayer and what an effect it can have on so many, near and far.
If the same kind of energy and effort that is being put into the accusing and blaming were to be put into true compassion and helpfulness, the hurting would be so much more bearable. The healing and recovery would be more hopeful.
Tonight as my heart goes out to all the families of the victims and everyone affected, I wanted to say a prayer. But I can’t seem to find any words that would be of any real help, my mind simply draws a blank. So instead, I ask God to hear our hearts, from the deepest pain and know our needs. I know He can hear the words we cannot speak, and He will answer.
Good morning to all!
They call this the “season of sharing”. (Well, I personally think that should be a year round theme, but that’s another soapbox.) I’d like to take this opportunity to thank a new friend and fellow author for his idea about writers helping each other to expand their audiences. His name is Seumas Gallacher, and his idea is “you scratch my blog, I’ll scratch your blog”. A “union” of blog writers is being formed called “The Blog Scratchers Union” with a hashtag of #TBSU.
The idea is to spread the word about the blogs you enjoy and follow by creating a listing at the end of your posts, or in a special section of your blog if you prefer. It seems to catching on like wildfire from what I’ve seen so far. I’ve already found several new blogs that I am now following, thanks to Seumas’ lists.
As a new and unknown author, this is a great way to make new acquaintances (and friends), to share resources and information, and get the word out there about your books and blogs. And it’s FREE! Now that’s a word we all like to hear!
So, as a part of my Christmas gift to my fellow authors (and continuing throughout the rest of the year) each Friday I will be posting my list for #TBSU. Since I am running 3 different blogs now, I will be separating my lists into categories according to the theme of each particular blog. The following are my blogs and their themes:
http://amberleaofalaska.wordpress.com – My personal blog, sharing a variety of thoughts, inspirations, and things about writing.
https://faithhopeandmiracles.com/ – Sharing encouragement & hope through God’s love and truth.
http://christianscritters.com/ – A place for sharing everything about animals.
I will be copying this post to each of the other sites as well, with the current listing at the end. If you or anyone you know has a blog, this is a great way to connect with others of similar interests, so please share!
Have a great weekend, and God bless!
Blogs to follow:
Enjoy, pass along, share if you feel like it 🙂
Just wanted to let everyone know, the paperback version of “Faith, Hope & Miracles” is on sale for $13.99 through Christmas at Amazon. Makes a great gift! Hurry for delivery in time for Christmas!
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas, filled with love, peace, joy and miracles!