Sunday, March 29, 2020

Keep Pressing On

Sitting at my desk this morning, I was able to watch the morning service at our church.  It's not the same as "being there", however,  I felt blessed by the people presenting the service.  Our church, like many other churches have suspended services for a few weeks.  This is probably the one time we need our church family more than ever.  Even though this service was recored, I still felt the presence of my church family.
Pastor Lynda's message was one about hope, and trusting that we will make it.  It's a time to reach out (by phone, letter, email, or text) to each other.  I am pretty sure you are not alone in your feelings right now.  Let someone else know that you are there, praying for them, praying with them, and letting them know you love them.
Cheryl Boysel sang a beautiful song.  I do not know the name of it, or who wrote it, but the theme was "Keep Pressing On, I'm Gonna Make it."  There is something familiar about Cheryl's beautiful voice.  It really doesn't matter what she sings, I always feel at peace when I hear her voice.  The message was perfect for today too; just keep praying and slowly moving forward.
If you are feeling sad or lonely, I have included the link to that service here (click here)
While still practicing social distancing, you can click on the above link and know that my Nazarene family will welcome you with open arms, (actually with an elbow bump) during this unusual time our country is facing.
I'm praying for each and everyone of you reading this blog today.  Feel blessed!

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Are Your Shelves Empty?

Over the past few weeks, I have heard and witnessed panic, frustration, and people who are afraid, as evidenced by empty store shelves.  Last week, I saw people in line waiting as the employees were trying to stock shelves, to take whatever they had in the box.  I don't remember this much panic, and uncertainty even after Hurricane Irma.
It takes a lot of faith to know that even this will pass, and we will survive.  Reading one of my devotions this morning, the scripture message was about crossing the Jordan river.  I cannot imagine what the people of Israel were experiencing when they realized they were going to cross that river which was now at flood stage. I'm thinking they were in a panic, feeling frustrated, and scared.  Probably for the same reasons we are all feeling panicked, frustrated and afraid.  How long will this virus thing go on?  How long will I be out of work? When will my church resume services?  Will we have enough food? If I am infected, how will that impact my family?
On that morning,  I'm sure that Joshua was experiencing all those emotions too, but he still obeyed the Lord.
And it shall come to pass, as soon as the soles of the feet of the priests who bear the ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth, shall rest in the waters of the Jordan, that the waters of the Jordan shall be cut off, the waters that come down from upstream, and they shall stand as a heap (Joshua 3:13, NKJV).   
That took an enormous amount of faith, to step out into that flood stage, mighty river.  But they did it, because they believed.
A different scenario manifested itself this week.  Several of the shelves at the grocery store were filled.  Is that because we are finally believing, this too shall pass?
I'm taking that first step, and waiting for the waters to depart for me too.  I want to encourage you to continue following the directives the Department of Health has recommended.  Continue social distancing, but that doesn't mean you can't email, text, or call your friends.  Don't lose touch with the people you love and care about.  They are frustrated and afraid too.

Saturday, February 1, 2020

Super Bowl-She Knew

One of our friends called to invite us to a tailgate party.  We talked for a few minutes about several things, and then decided on food, and who would bring what.  She's not a big football fan either, but we love getting together.  While the guys are all off in another room, we girls have a great time sharing recipes, or sampling the "new dessert one of our group" wants us to try.  We also talk about sales, and all the money we've saved by heading to the sale rack first. 
When my girlfriend and I finally go off the phone, my husband was smiling.  I thought he was smiling because he enjoys gathering at their house to watch the game, and eat.
Finally he said, "you don't need to tell people you don't like football."  I looked at him, trying to figure out where that comment came from.
"What do you mean?"
He said, "the first thing you said when she invited us to come over to watch the Super Bowl, was, I thought the Super Bowl was over."
She knew.

Saturday, January 4, 2020

Too Many Shoes?

My husband has always commented on how many pair of shoes I have.  I've tried to explain to him, my shoes, or the number of pairs I have, compare to his golf clubs.  It must be a man thing.  Because he just doesn't get it.
I thought I found a solution the would shut him up, even temporarily.  I started looking before Christmas for a shoe tree, or an over-the-door shoe caddy.  Something to organize my shoes, and get them off the floor in my closet. Hmmm, what is he doing in my closet anyway?
I searched until I found what I thought was the perfect way to store my shoes.  And while I was at it, I thought I would be nice, and find one for him too.

The two shoe caddy's came in the mail, but at different times.  I hung mine over the door in my closet, and proceeded to organize my shoes.  I stood back and realized I had lots more little slots to put more shoes.

When the caddy came for my husband, I tried to surprise him by hanging his over his door.  When I put his shoes in the caddy, I realized there was a little problem.  The weight from his two pairs of shoes wouldn't hold the caddy in place.  So, every time you open or close the door, you have to move the shoe caddy in order to close his closet door.

Friday, January 3, 2020

I subscribed to SendoutCards over 10 years ago.  One of the reason's I love SendoutCards is the convenience.  Several weeks ago I was waiting in a very long line.  While I was in that line waiting, I opened the app on my phone, and sent two cards; one was a birthday card, and the other a just because card. Once you have all your contacts listed on your site, with their name, address, birthday or anniversary, or both, you just pick out the card you want to send, add a few words of your own, and press send.  Your monthly subscription pays for the card and postage.  This is not a subliminal message to get you to subscribe to SendoutCards, but rather to subscribe to their philosophy.

This past week SendoutCards sent a text message inviting me to a "daily prompt for #The12DaysofGiving."  I wasn't sure I would be able to do that.  Everyone I know is busy, including me.  So when I first read the challenge, I wasn't sure I could do it, or even want to do it.

 The first prompt was to pay for the person behind you when you are in line for coffee, tea, or whatever.  I received someones' kindness a few years ago, and I still remember how that made me feel.  However, when I actually paid for the people behind me, it was a totally different feeling.  I knew that they would have no idea "who paid for their lunch." It was such an awesome feeling as I drove away that day remembering how happy I felt when someone showed me that same kindness. 

The second day prompt is called Neighborly Kindness...and reminds us that neighbors are a special one of a kind family.  SendoutCards included a link if you would like to send them a card to tell them how special they are and to thank them for all their help, just when you need it.  You can also just send them a note, telling them that very same thing.

I can 't wait for tomorrow's challenge. Giving does not have to be about anything material.  It can be as simple as just letting someone know you appreciate them.  Random Acts of Kindness, is something I want to incorporate into my life.  I want to let as many people as possible know the profound impact they have had on my life.  I want to start that now, not next week.  Life can be short, and in fact, we have no idea how long we can share that kindness.

Wednesday, January 1, 2020


One of the daily devotionals I read is Streams in the Desert (Cowman, 1997).   One of my very best friends, Sue bought this little devotional for me several years ago.  One of the reason's I love this devotional is that we both read it everyday.  We don't see each other that often, but we text each other many times a day.  Besides our love of the Lord, we are both caregivers.  We don't have to explain anything to each other, we just "get it". 

Yesterday, Cowman wrote, "Thus far has the Lord helped us,"(I Samuel 7:12, NKJV).  What he's talking about is up to now, the Lord has helped.  Thus far means up to this point, but the Lord hasn't stopped.  So no matter what we are going through we can always look back, and see how the Lord's hand was there, helping, leading, guiding us, and giving us the hope and courage we need until the next "thus far."

Another reason that little devotional yesterday resonated with me is because he wrote that for December doesn't matter what year.  Thus far the Lord has helped us...there is so much more to come. The last day of the year.  Today is the first day of a new year.

I used to be methodical in writing New Years resolutions.  I set out to lose weight, eat healthier,  exercise on a regular basis, learn to say no, and take time off (to rest).  I was always so proud of myself that I was able to stick to that list...for about 10 days.  Then I ate whatever I could cram in my mouth during the 5 to 10 minute break between clients (if I had a break between clients).  I counted the steps from my car to the office door as my exercise for the day.  I had to drag all that "stuff" with me, so that meant I was exercising, right?  So by the 11th day, my resolutions were at the very bottom of the pile. Or in my "to do" basket.

My goal, or resolution, is to stay focused on I Samuel 7:12, Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen, and called its name Ebenezer, saying, Thus far the Lord has helped us (NKJV).  Which means to me,  there is always more.  Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope (NKJV).

Thus far the Lord has helped me peace and hope for this new year, 2020.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Tis the season to be jolly~ fa la la la la......At least that's what the world is telling us right now.  This is a joyful and peaceful time to celebrate Jesus birth.  A time for celebration. However, just because the rest of us are feeling the joy with the anticipation of family and friends gathering around us, not everyone is feeling the joy.

The people who are living alone, through the death of a spouse.  Or a single mom whose last child moved out this past year to start college.  There are so many scenarios that I can't even begin to name all the circumstances people may be facing during this time.  A single mother whose paycheck barely covers the rent and utilities, has no money to buy her children a present. In fact, she doesn't have the money to buy a tree.

There are so many things in my life that I sometimes take them for granted.  Like a roof over my head.  A car that gets me from point A to point B.  A refrigerator to store food that I buy.

I have been there, that single mom, with little money to do anything but pay the rent and keep the utilities on.  I have felt the pain watching my children watch in anticipation if any presents will be under the tree with their name on it. Or being in a crowded store watching other parents load up on toys or clothes to surprise someone on Christmas morning.

I am trying to look around me, in my own backyard, so to speak, to spot those individuals who are not feeling the same joy as everyone else.  It's hard to live alone.  It's hard to be happy when your mother died a few months ago.  You have four children, and your husband decided you are no longer attractive to him, so he found someone younger than you, to build a life with...without his children or their mother.   Or a routine visit to the doctor turned out to be a major life changer with a deadly diagnosis.

I tried to imagine how Jesus's Mother, Mary must have felt.  She was a virgin, not married, and pregnant. 
She was betrothed to a man named Joseph.  I can only imagine how embarrassed he must have felt. However, the angel Gabriel told Mary,  Rejoice highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women (Luke 1:28, NKJV).

My prayer is that no one eats alone.  That everyone has enough food to eat.  Luke 6:20-23 (The Beatitudes): Blessed are you poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.  Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh.  Blessed are you when men hate you, And when the exclude you, and revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man's sake. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.

I'm praying for Joy, Peace and Love... Merry Christmas!
And Joy, Peace, and Love to continue the new year.
Happy New Year

Link to my web site: Kathryn Neff