Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Time goes so fast!
This year is going to be very different for us. Many family members will be gone, and two of our three sons will not be home for Christmas eve or Christmas day. Makes me rather melancholy. I do get to see them the week following Christmas though!
This year has brought about many changes in my life. I have grown in many ways, and learned quite a lot! I continue to marvel at what God is teaching me.
As God continues to bring opportunities for Jeff and I to share our testimony, I am thankful for all the people that I meet. Each one has brought something special into my life and heart. I look forward to the special things that I will be doing in 2011.
We will be at the Bolivar Wesleyan Church on Sunday, January 23. Sharing at the morning service at 10:30.
I am learning to produce the Circle of Friends radio program on 95.9 the Light. I will also be attending another Writer's conference in February. I am hoping to be involved in the Ministry that I posted about in the previous post. I am writing a few things to record for it.
Along with that, I will also attend the Circle of Friends Conference on February 26, 2011.
Love Me Back To Life is the theme this year. It will be held at Fisher Auditorium in Wooster, Ohio. For more information go to www.circleoffriends.fm.
That will keep me busy until March, when I get to help cater for another Married Life Live at NewPointe church.
I will also be moving the GriefShare classes to Monday and adding a morning class for those that do not like to drive at night. If you are interested, be sure to contact the church for more information. Classes begin on Monday, January 3. 9:00 a.m. and again at 5:30 p.m.
Needless to say, my year continues to be busy, but I am looking forward to it!
Well, I will close this post here and wish you all a very blessed Christmas, and a Happy New Year.
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
It is called Women Inspired, two minutes to greatness! www.womeninspired.org.
Do you know your purpose? Are you living with passion?
God wants you to succeed. He desires for you to live a life of abundance, joy, and purpose. He longs to fill you with passion for Him, for your family, your friends, and your work.
The Women Inspired Call is inspired women encouraging, inspiring, and motivating YOU, to live YOUR LIFE with intent, purpose, and joy, to the glory of God.
If you want to live your life more passionately or are searching for your purpose, we want to help empower you to find it and live it…THIS CALL IS FOR YOU.
- You’ll gain insight on God’s direction for your life.
- You’ll be encouraged to live with PASSION, by women who live passionately.
- You’ll be led to become more intimate with the Lord.
- You’ll receive daily motivation by women who have faced obstacles, but persevered, and overcame.
- You’ll be encouraged by women who understand life’s struggles and are committed to bravely support you, as you journey through yours.
- The daily calls will inspire you to receptively receive all God desires from you.
I personally know Julie Gorman, she is the "Tuesday woman" She is the host of a program on blogtalk radio called His Love Extended.
I had the privilege and honor of being interviewed by Julie on August 18, 2010. You can go to her link above and look in the archived programs if you would like to listen to that program.
Julie sent me a message a couple of weeks ago and introduced me to Clint Steel, who is the founder of the Women Inspired ministry. I responded immediately to the e-mail and left my phone number. Within a matter of five minutes I received a phone call from Clint! He shared his heart and the vision of this ministry. I was so impressed with all that I heard. He asked if I would like to sign up for the free ten days of two minute messages. I did, and I have been blessed by the wonderful words that I have heard for the past several days. I fully intend to be a permanent recipient of these encouraging messages. I will also be an occasional contributor, along with my friend Virelle Kidder, and a few other online friends.
If you click on the links directly below this paragraph you can hear two samples of these inspirational calls.
www.2minutestogreatness.com/choose-your-call/women-inspired go to this site to hear other calls.
www.facebook.com/home.php#!/profile.php?id=1376215153 This is a great advertisement with women encouraging you to listen!
This is something I think is important. Women, all women need encouragement. Please check this out and let me know what you think by sending me a message here on my blog!
Thanks for taking the time to read this and to take a listen for yourself!
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
What I am trying to say is I am thankful for so much, but I don't want to lose sight of the important things. Our health, our home, our family but mostly our God!
Happy Thanksgiving to all of you, and God's richest blessings to you all!
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
In the past couple of weeks I have had two speaking engagements, the counseling center where I work has moved in to a beautiful new permanent facility, I finished my canning, I have another speaking engagement Friday evening, a banquet, a missions gathering, and small group! Whew I am tired.
Thanks for checking back to look for any updates.
Last night I was privileged to to speak to the Bolivar Wesleyan church Ladies group and met many new people and was thrilled to see a few familiar faces as well. Thanks ladies for your kindness and attentiveness! You all are a blessing!
I am excited about the Circle Of Friends' - Girlfriends event. This year we are hosting three different school districts at two events. Both of which I have the privilege and blessing to be a part of. Girls and moms, I look forward to meeting you, and if we have already met I look forward to hearing form you! What a blessing it is! And Rhoda Troyer from RIG and Co brought some great ideas to the girls about how to dress, what works and what doesn't! Lovely to see Rhoda again and to glean form her knowledge.
I hope you are all blessed and have a great day!!!
Sunday, October 10, 2010
It's true, I have been so busy I have not had time to blog. Let me show you just what I have been up to: So what do you think?
Not convinced, let me show you a few more.
How about now? Still not convinced?
OK what bout now? Well nevertheless, I truly have been busy, but I will also reap the benefits of my labors time and again over the winter months. So, just enjoy the pictures and I'll think about you as I am enjoying the wonderful home canned goods.
I have also begun working on a new book. It is inspirational fiction. It is something to fill in between the edits of Through My Tears, and in addition to Hot Flashes With A Side Of Garlic Bread.
So there! I have reasons for not blogging. What is your reason? Please share it with me.
Monday, September 27, 2010
The above link is a preview of Carol's book. Click on it and it will take you to youtube.
The links below are additional ways that you can win a copy of Carol's book Between A Rock And A Grace Place.
Questions/Answers from Carol Kent
Tell us about the Christmas gift you received. How did it help you to find grace in the middle of a seemingly hopeless situation?
Two weeks before Christmas our doorbell rang at 9:15 p.m. It was dark outside and by the time my husband, Gene, joined me at the front door, we were surprised to find no one there. It was already dark, but my eyes fell on a large, exquisitely wrapped gift. The card on top said, “Mom.” Initially, it felt like a bad joke. Nine years earlier our son, a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy had been arrested for murdering his wife’s first husband and he was in prison serving a life-without-the-possibility-of-parole sentence.
However, I am a “Mom” and the package was left on my doorstep, so I opened it. The note appeared to be in my son’s unique handwriting. The note expressed his deep love for me and his gratefulness for what I had done to help him since his arrest. He said a “friend” had helped him deliver the surprise. Opening the box, I discovered a gorgeous russet-colored silk jacket—and it fit me perfectly.
That night I discovered something new about God and something I had forgotten about myself. He loves to interject divine surprises into our lives. His timing is always perfect, but it had been a while since I had been surprised by joy, wonder, and grace in the middle of one of the tight spots of life.
What are “grace places,” and how can hurting people in need find them?
All of us experience tight spots when life turns out differently from our dream. When we face the overwhelming obstacles of life, we can experience the last thing we ever expect—the sweet spot of grace. Grace places have a variety of forms, but some include:
- Receiving love when we don’t deserve it
- Finding safety in the middle of a fearful and uncertain experience
- Being comforted by friends and family (people who are extensions of God’s love)
- Experiencing the embrace of God when we have run out of strength and courage
“Grace means the free, unmerited, unexpected love of God, and all the benefits, delights, and comforts which flow from it.” (R.P.C. Hanson)
How important are contentment and gratitude in finding grace and peace?
My son, Jason, is teaching me that I need to choose contentment and thanksgiving in all things. As an inmate in a maximum-security prison, all of his personal items must fit in one small one-foot-high and one-and a half-feet-deep and two-and-a half feet long steel lockbox. He has learned to live comfortably with very little, which brings him a surprising sense of peace.
When I was visiting him one weekend I asked how he holds on to hope in the middle of a life-without-the-possibility-of-parole sentence. He said, “Mom, I have a gratitude list. Whenever the clouds of depression try to discouragement, I get out a piece of paper and write down everything I have to be thankful for. I’m thankful I have two parents who will be my advocates for as long as they live. The average number of years a lifer gets visits is five years and then no one comes anymore. I’m also thankful I can be a missionary on a compound that houses up to 1,700 men.” I’m learning from Jason that I find contentment when I choose to be thankful and when I invest my time in helping other people.
What are some unexpected gestures of kindness you’ve received in the past, and how did they help you through difficult times?
A couple of years ago Jason’s appendix ruptured and he was rushed from the prison to a civilian hospital. Gene and I were not allowed to know where he was and I prayed for someone to care for him as a mother would. He had two armed guards in his room at all times. Nurse Betty was assigned to Jason’s care. She treated him with respect and extraordinary care—and I knew she was a direct answer to my prayers.
A group of people who called themselves our “Stretcher Bearers” received an e-mailed monthly update on how to help with our needs. We were blessed with meals, cards, and financial gifts, often just before we needed extra funds for the next legal payment. These amazing people waited with us for two and a half years through seven postponements of the trial.
How has your definition of adventure changed over the years, and why is it important to retain adventure in your life, despite your situation?
True adventure is seeing the potential of living for things that matter in the middle of your current circumstances. We had the adventure of launching a nonprofit organization that helps to empower our son to facilitate classes by having books and DVD teaching series sent to the prison. We also have the adventure of reaching out to other people who are in crisis, which brings purpose and deep meaning to our lives.
There is a theme of surprise throughout the book. What is one of the greatest surprises you’ve had?
The powerful story of Tammy Wilson and Matthew Ben Rodriguez is in this book. Tammy contacted me after I spoke at an event she attended because my son is incarcerated in the same prison where Matt, the man who killed her mother thirteen years ago is incarcerated. She had been praying for someone to lead Matt to Christ and asked if Jason would try to meet him. It turned out that Jason and Matt were already friends and this amazing story is one of forgiveness, redemption, and restoration that can only be explained in the supernatural dimension.
Between a Rock and a Grace Place releases 10 years after your son, Jason, was sentenced to life in a maximum security prison and includes excerpts from Jason’s letters. Can you tell us how he’s doing now?
He has just taken his 8th group of men through Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University Course and he will be facilitating a biblical counseling class on marriage and family this fall. He has a prayer group of twelve inmates who fast and pray for the needs of each other and their families. Prison is a depressing, dark, and sad place, but Jason is living for things that will outlast him.
When you received news about Jason’s clemency hearing being denied, how did you respond?
I wailed like a baby, sobbed, felt angry, hurt, and disappointed in God. Then we saw Jason a day after this devastating news. He was calm and very much at peace. He hugged me as I wept and said, “Mom, this case isn’t about having the best attorney or about having the favor of Florida’s top executive political leaders. If I am ever allowed to walk in freedom in this lifetime, it will be because God miraculously opened a door that was closed.” My son helps me to develop an eternal perspective and that day he comforted me.
What advice do you have for those who are stuck between a rock and a grace place?
In the middle of your own hurt reach out to someone else who needs help worse than you do. When you involve yourself in meeting the needs of others, you discover an unexpected freedom on the inside. Corrie ten Boom once said, “What did you do today that only a Christian would have done?”
As a result of your journey, you and your husband have founded the nonprofit organization Speak Up for Hope. What are the goals of the organization, and how can people get involved?
Our vision: To help inmates and their families adjust to their new normal.
Our mission: We exist to provide hope to inmates and their families through encouragement and resources.
Please go to www.speakupforhope.org for a list of practical ways individuals, churches, and organizations can help with specific projects. Our goal is to live out the truth of Prov. 31:8-9: “Speak up for the people who have no voice, for the rights of all the down-and-outers. Speak out for justice. Stand up for the poor and destitute!”
Where may we connect with you further or to purchase a copy of Between a Rock and a Grace Place?
Read an excerpt of the book now
Between a Rock and a Grace Place by Carol Kent (Zondervan)
From bestselling author Carol Kent comes a riveting journey of facing the impassible obstacles of life and discovering the last thing ever expected—the sweet spot of grace.
Carol Kent and her husband, Gene, are now living what some would call a heartbreaking life—their son, Jason, a young man who initially had so much promise, is now living out a life sentence for murder in a maximum security prison. All their appeals have been exhausted at both the state and federal levels—humanly speaking, they have run out of options. But despite their hopeless situation, Carol and her husband live a life full of grace. Kent reveals how life’s problems become fruitful affliction where we discover the very best divine surprises, including peace, compassion, freedom, and adventure. Through the Kent’s remarkable ongoing journey, Jason’s riveting letters from behind bars, and true “grace place” stories from the lives of others, Between a Rock and a
Grace Place reveals that when seemingly insurmountable challenges crash into our lives, we can be transformed as we discover God at work in ways we never imagined. With vulnerable openness, irrepressible hope, restored joy, and a sense of humor, Carol Kent helps readers to find God’s “grace places” in the middle of their worst moments.
About the Author
Carol Kent is the bestselling author of When I Lay My Isaac Down and A New Kind of Normal. Carol is an expert on public speaking, writing, and on encouraging people to hold on to hope when life’s circumstances turn out differently from their dreams. She lives in Florida with her husband Gene.
Carol Kent is a popular international public speaker best known for being dynamic, humorous, encouraging, and biblical. She is a former radio show co-host and has often been a guest on Focus on the Family and a featured speaker at Time Out for Women and Heritage Keepers arena events. She has spoken at The Praise Gathering for Believers and at Vision New England’s Congress. She is also a frequent speaker at Women of Virtue events across the country.
A complimentary copy of this book was provided to me as a blog tour host by Zondervan in exchange for posting this interview on my blog. Please visit Christian Speaker Services at www.ChristianSpeakerServices.com for more information about blog tour management services.
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
I just want to give you all a heads up on what has been happening, and what is in the near future.
We had the opportunity to visit our son, Micah in Virginia this past weekend. We were able to attend the Awakening Festival. Third Day was AMAZING! I have a picture I want to post, but I need to get it from Micah. We stayed in a beautiful resort while there Lansdowne Resort in Leesburg!
On the right where you can see the windows with the curtains moved are a couple of the rooms/suites where it looked like some of the bands were staying.
Below here are a couple other views of the pools! Beautiful!!!
Here you can see me standing in front of the clubhouse.
Here you can see my very intellectual looking husband, Jeff. He loves to strike a pose for the camera!
I have received word from the self publisher in regard to publishing Through My Tears. The price that was quoted was far above my budget, so it appears that is not the direction God will have me take. Unless the money appears miraculously.
I just sent in a sample of the book to another publisher along with their submission guidelines, so now, it is just a waiting game. I will continue to work with Virelle Kidder on polishing my manuscript to sent to a literary agent. Perhaps that is the direction I need to go.
What the next week will bring:
Now, I want to let you all know that I will be hosting a review on Carol Kent's new book Between A Rock and A Grace Place . on September 27 so be sure to check it out! I will also be holding a drawing to give away her book, so be sure to watch!
And make sure to follow directions for sign-up.
See you in a few days!
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
We are meeting in room 500 (Starting Pointe rooms) at 7 p.m. If you have not pre-registered it's OK. Just show up tonight and I'm good with that.
I know that there are MANY of you out there in the 'blogosphere' that are having a rough time getting over the death of a loved one. Sometimes we are so full of anger at God or anger even at the person that died that we don't allow ourselves to heal.
Yes, we have to heal and we can! I have seen people that are so fearful about something happening to another loved one that they imagine something bad happening and tend to 'suffocate' the person they love the most. Are you someone like that? Do you over-do your protection of a family member and make them fearful, or worse yet, push them away because of your constant fear of illness or death.
Stop that cycle now! Get help! God is NOT angry with you, or He is not upset that you are angry with Him. He is God after all. He loves you with an everlasting love. He cares that you are struggling. He cares that you need help.
Look for the nearest GriefShare opportunity. Go to www.griefshare.org and type in your zip code to find the nearest group to you. I cannot say enough positive about GriefShare. It has helped me, and thousand of other across this nation to face the need for grief recovery. This is a journey my friends, not something that will just go away. Psalm 23 says that we walk THROUGH the valley of the shadow of death... we don't stop in the middle of it, or walk around it or over it. To be whole again we must pass all the way through.
Think about it. Take action and begin your journey today. God is just waiting to walk through the valley with you along with the GriefShare group you meet with.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
"when is the book coming out?"
And I always have to answer
"I don't know"
Well friends, I will soon have an answer to that question! Yes, things have progressed to the point where I am talking to a Publisher at the Wooster Book Company. I have met with them one time, but have talked on the phone and many e-mails. The next step is soon to follow. I am hoping by the end of next week to have that answer for all of you, as well as for myself!!!
And so, as I have requested before and I continue to ask, please be praying for God's will in this and for His timing and for the finances needed.
I will keep you all posted as I find out anything.
Thursday, September 9, 2010
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
I have been facilitating GriefShare for four-and-half years, all year round. People need to know there is a safe place to go to share their grief. We follow the GriefShare curriculum, which is a Biblical based curriculum. Many funeral homes offer grief support, but it tends to be very generic. Of course those are VERY helpful, but GriefShare goes a bit deeper. It speaks to your heart and soul!
If you are interested in attending, please call the church office at 330-602-5600 to register, or come to the church tonight (Tuesday) and follow the signs. Don't let the size of the church frighten you away, yes it is big, but we typically have five to fifteen people in our classes. That is not an overwhelming number of people, and it is very helpful to know there are other people learning to live with the loss of a loved one!
The cost of the class is $12.00, (scholarships are available) which covers the cost of the workbook. If you have already attended a class, the book you already have is fine! We would welcome you to attend again.
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
In recent weeks I have felt God bringing this word up on many occasions. Beginning when I made the trip to Knoxville with the *Circle of Friends. We made an hour long infomercial type of program where our very own Lisa Troyer, and Dawn Yoder, were singing and we were the friends they were singing to. It is something that is going to be used to promote the Circe Of Friends Ministry, through Moody Broadcasting and Moody affiliated programs/conferences. It will eventually be available on TV Christian channels.
Anyway, one of the songs that Lisa was singing was "Beautiful".( It is on her Meet Me At The Well CD, that goes along with Virelle Kidder's book Meet Me At The Well, and has a companion Bible study written by Virelle and our *COF gal Jocelyn Hamsher.)
The song is amazing and I love singing it. It helps me to remember that I am beautiful because of the work He has done in me! Upon my return from Knoxville, I was at home trying to catch up on things...I am always behind. I had my TV on tuned to Serious Radio, the christian music channel. I heard a number of songs that had 'beautiful' in them. Hmmm, I wonder. Is God trying to tell me something?
I have felt so very insecure the past few months (more than usual) about how I look. The bags under my eyes are more pronounced, the dark circles accompanying them as well. My weight has gone up...again. My hair is...getting much more gray under my Preference #6, and I am finding it more difficult to cover.
I am moving much slower, my fibro has kicked it up another notch on the pain meter, I seem to have poison ivy all over my arms (how that happened I'll never know) How can I be beautiful?
Because even though I have all of the "short comings" God has still chosen to be my Father, and to work in me and through me. Yes, tight clothes, black puffy eyes, gray hair, aches, pains and everything else in between.
God loves me. And you know what else? Even through all of these things, God requires one thing. That I TRUST Him!
Thursday, August 26, 2010
I get it all put together, it is simmering on the stove, and I check one last thing in the recipe only to realize that I didn't have fresh mint to put in it. Fresh mint are you kidding me? Who would have thought to put fresh mint in a zucchini soup recipe?
All of that got me to thinking. How many of us think we have our life "recipe" simmering on the stove, only to realize we have a missing ingredient. I suddenly remembered that the most important thing to add to that "dish" that is being prepared is to have my daily cup of fellowship with God and His word.
Have you had your cup today?
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
I know little or nothing about them, I assume that this is a garter snake, but honestly I don't know. I do know it stayed on the steps for awhile, then it slithered down the side of the steps and who knows where he went. Ewwww.
It totally creeps me out to have to go out the door. I know that I am a million times the size of this guy, but let me tell you my FEAR certainly made up for the size. One little flip of his tongue and I am unglued!
I believe I wrote in an earlier post about fear. It has certainly gripped me a lot this summer. I am beginning to wonder if God is speaking something to me?
There are 365 scriptures about fear! Hmmm, that would make one for every day of the year. Perhaps God knew we all would struggle with that emotion more than most.
I cannot say that I agree with the there is nothing to fear but fear itself thing...I was scared spitless when I saw this guy. I have lived here on the farm for almost eight years, and had never seen one before. I think that is the grace of God. In my estimation, those creepy things should live in hell right along with the worst serpent of them all--satan!
Lord Jesus, help me deal with the things I fear --both in everyday life and in the christian life. I know so little about some things, yet I do know that You have given us the power over things. Help fear not to rule my life, but help me to know that Your word is true and I can trust You when you tell me "fear not."
Friday, August 20, 2010
Yesterday, Jeff and I worked like crazy to get things in shape for pictures, and I finished up with the important stuff this morning. WHEW! It is 9:30 a.m. and they are here!
I am not a born and bred farm girl, no, I was a city girl through and through! Until eight years ago.
After Liz died in 2000, I didn't think I could live in our home any more because of all of the memories. So, we went looking to buy something else. We found a lovely home with six acres and a pond, made an offer and it was accepted...then I couldn't follow through with it. Those very memories that I was afraid of, were something I desperately needed.
So, for two and a half years we stayed in our home. We had been married for 21 years at that point our home was paid off, and we loved where
we were, we loved and treasure the memories.
One day we received a phone call from an "old" friend. A wonderful man that had known Jeff's family for many many years. He owns a lot of property in our town, and he posed the question of "would you be interested..." We had not looked for anything more since that first place that we nearly bought, so I couldn't honestly say yes. My husband, Jeff, told him we would think about it and talk about it and let him know.
When he told us where this property was, I was amazed by the fact that there was actually a farm almost in town, and I did not even know it existed. Wow. Jeff came out the next day to check it out, and then he called me at school. (I was working) he was so excited and told me I had to come out and look at this place! So, it just so happened this place was about two minutes from the school where I worked, so I stopped by after work. As I turned into the drive, I realized why I never even knew it existed. The farm sits back off the main road by about 1/3 of a mile, it sits behind other homes. I drove up over the little hill and a whole new world opened up to me!
It was incredible! 148 acres of beautiful solitude! As soon as I drove back that drive, I had this feeling that God wanted us here. I looked at the house which was built in 1900. It needed a LOT of work done. It is a good thing Jeff used to be a contractor!
We ended up saying YES!!!
It most certainly was a God thing. We have found such peace and healing here. Our boys loved it here. They all liked the opportunities it provided, such as hunting right here, fishing (we have a lovely pond) four-wheeling just to name a few. Owning a horse has been great fun too. My whole world changed when we moved here. The peace and quiet ministered to my heart, and allowed for healing to take place in my wounded soul.
I am so grateful that God provided this pace for us, just when we needed the healing most. Yes, we worked very hard to get it ready to move into. Matter of fact we gutted the house and nice months later it was ready to move into. I have tried to keep with the "country" theme. Just to make it authentic.
My dream is to someday have a place like this where we can invite hurting people to come and stay with us. To be a house of ministry. A place for planting and harvesting health and healing. A place where people can find God, and be ministered to as they need it. Right now we rent this home and get the opportunity to enjoy all of these beautiful surroundings. My hope is to own a place like this where we can have a large home for people to stay in. Vineyard House is the name I would like to use. A place where there is the hope of fruitfulness, new life, healing.
Thursday, August 19, 2010
I believe I mentioned it a time or two here in previous posts...
The interview was wonderful. Huge thanks go out to Julie Gorman@His Love Extended Ministries. What a lovely woman of God she is, and a great interviewer. She made me feel very at ease, and comfortable while she allowed me to share with the blogtalk listeners.
I also have joined the ranks of tweeters! Yes, you can follow me on twitter now! Just click the icon on the left side of the page. I am @beckireiser if you want to know. I am just beginning to use it, so bear with me till I get the hang of it. I feel that since I am making these adjustments I need to get up to speed on a few things.
My oldest son, Micah, asked me several months ago if I was tweeting, and I said huh? lol
Now I am following him on twitter. He'll love that.
Thanks to all of you out there that have been praying for me, for the ministry God has given us, and for all of the opportunities He is giving. I will be sharing more great things as time passes. Right now, I simply ask that you continue to pray for us, and for God's perfect will in the future endeavors.
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Please try to tune and listen LIVE. If you cannot join us for the live broadcast, you may listen to the archived program at your leisure!
We are on again...FOR SURE! Healthy host, healthy guest.
Simply click on the link directly below and it will take you to the radio program. Then make sure your volume is turned up. Yep, it is that simple!
Here is the phone number that listeners can call in on: 347-850-8893
This is a call in line that you may call if you would like to ask ANY question pertaining to our story.
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
The broadcast for His Love Extended that was to take place today at 2 PM has been canceled due to the host of the program (Julie Gorman) being ill.
We have rescheduled the interview for next Wednesday, August 18. The time will be announced here and on facebook.
I apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. I am sure God has reason for this delay.
Please lift Julie Gorman up in prayer as she needs healing in her body!
Monday, August 9, 2010
The time is almost here! I am so excited. Make sure you tune in, and there is also a phone number to "call in" if you have any questions you would like to ask during the broadcast!
Here is the phone number that listeners can call in on: 347-850-8893
Join Julie Miller Gorman and I, as I share the testimony that God has given to our family through the abduction and murder of our seventeen-year-old daughter, Liz.
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Keep watching this blog for more information!
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
You carry the burden of grief, and for a while it obscures everything around you, until slowly, the burden begins to shrink inside your heart, instead of blocking out everything else in the world and finally it folds in on itself. And while it still remains a part of you, as you knew it always would, it made room in your heart for hope.
I found this excerpt from a book I had been reading, I wrote it down, but I forgot to write down the author's name. I am currently hunting through the books so that I can give the author full credit, but until I find it, I hope you read it and it speaks to your heart as much as it did mine!
Thursday, July 15, 2010
As I was out working in my garden today, my mind was spinning. We have had rain this week, and very humid temperatures. Not only has my garden grown, the weeds have nearly overtaken it. I began at one side of the garden in search of the cucumbers that were very obvious on Sunday afternoon; I could not believe that the weeds were at least a foot high. How is that possible? I have worked out in that for hours on end when I have the time, and it looked great. The rain hit, and the garden is now overrun with weeds.
I was talking to the Lord as I bent over to pull the vines and bushes from around the onions. Lord, could you just make the rainfall on the veggies and not the weeds? Then the scripture about God will make it rain on the just and the unjust came to mind. That started me thinking about weeds, and comparing them to sin.
We all know how easy it is sin. By doing something wrong, or by not doing something right. If we know something is wrong, yet we allow it to slip by, making the excuse that it isn’t all that bad, God won’t disown me if I do that or don’t do that. No, but that sin will come between God and me. It can strangle the good things growing in me and kill it so fast, just as weeds can do in the garden.
As I sit here and type, the old hymn In The Garden comes to mind, and the words to this begin to form:
In My Garden
I come to the garden alone
while the dew is still on the grass;
and the voice I hear falling on my ear
The Son of God exposes.
And I cry to Him and whine to Him
and I tell Him life is unfair.
That the weeds I pull are so quickly grown,
I cannot keep up on my own!
My back and neck are in pain
My behind hurts to bad to sit down
Is this garden too big, for my husband and me
The pain that it makes is profound.
So, He talks to me and He walks with me
But never lifts a hand to help
Then He speaks these words
And I hear them too
that weeds are like sin in a man.
My child these are so much like sin,
The bad grow faster than good.
The veggies you plant, taste so good in your mouth,
but weeds are still a part.
And He speaks to me
and I hear the words
I’m beginning to understand.
That in life we have so many weeds
We must choose to pull from their roots.
Again it speaks to my heart
That these weeds are so much like sin
That the good in us, which is Jesus Christ
Can be covered by weeds like our sin!
Lord give me the strength to go on,
to walk boldly out to my garden
Knowing that my work is cut out for me,
Let’s hoe this row of sinfulness.
I will pull up the roots of bitterness
and dig up the vines of despair
I will reap the fruits of a victory
that come from my garden out there!
So, besides getting part of my garden weeded, I allowed God to speak to my heart. I thought I would share it with you. Maybe it will speak to someone besides me...I hope! I know some of it may a little silly, but it is truthful.
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Friday, July 9, 2010
Guess I am just tired.
Tired of a lot of things.
Ready for something good to happen!
Anybody else having that kind of day?
Friday, July 2, 2010
My world has been so busy since May. Jordan got moved to Evansville, started his job, passed his NCLEX test, and just happens to be here for this weekend! We have been out to visit him, actually to take him his "stuff" so he would have something in his apartment. He needs to go shopping! He needs furniture.
Micah is home on vacation! We saw him very briefly a couple of weeks ago when he was in Ohio to be in a wedding. That was the first we had seen him since Christmas. We have not been to NoVA to visit him. Hopefully we will go before the end of the summer. So nice to have all three of my 'boys' home for the weekend.
Chris has moved to another apartment in Akron. Thank God he is out of the neighborhood he was in last year. One night, in the middle of the night, he heard noise outside his window. HE was still awake, so he looked out the window, and just as he did that he saw his neighbors shooting a gun at someone! He could actually see the fire from the barrel of the gun. Hmmm, made me pretty nervous to hear about that! He now has a different roommate, his best friend Marion. The house they live in is so much better, and in a lovely neighborhood. His backdoor neighbor is a cop! Yay!
Jeff and I are doing well. We have been spending time tooling around in his 77 Triumph Spitfire.
We have found that Buzz the Beagle here in this picture has decided that this is HIS car. He gets really upset if we take a ride in it without him. He really lets us know he is mad when we get home. If he could talk we would have to cover our ears.
I have been working a lot of hours the past few weeks. First I had to cover for our office manager, Leigh Ann when she had surgery in her hand. Then I covered part of her schedule while she was on vacation for two weeks. Whew! I am pooped. We have been busy putting in our garden, and keeping up with the mowing.
Needless to say, I have not had time for writing (anything) so working on the book has once again been put on hold. My schedule will be drastically different this week! Only working about eight hours total. I can use those extra hours at home for a lot of things. Mostly this week to be with my family! The guys are here till Wednesday!!!
Well, I am calling it a day. Happy Fourth of July to you all!
Friday, May 21, 2010
Just remembering our beautiful daughter, Liz.
March 20, 1983-May 23, 2000
Sunday, May 23 it will be ten years since her abduction and death. Throughout the past decade God has done the miraculous. He has given us a ministry, blessed us with many friends and family. Our boys, which are now men, are growing and serving God.
We are blessed amidst our tragedy. God truly reigns!
Looking forward to eternity when we will join Liz with our heavenly Father.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
God's blessings to Jordan! We are so proud of all you, your accomplishments and hard work!
Love you honey!
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
And to think this all began because of Liz. It will soon be ten years that Liz died -- May 23. Our lives have changed so drastically since that night. I am grateful that I know just where Liz is, even if I have no idea what she is doing right now, I am sure she is having an amazing time. Just being in the presence of God all the time, actually living out her eternity! WOW
I think about her so often, but even more so when I am doing GriefShare. We have to talk about our loved ones, and it is so real again. As much as I love her and miss her, I would not wish her back to this world.
Soon, I hope to have my writing completed...lovingly, painfully, but most rewarding thing is it has proven to be healing. Thanks God for that!
Sunday, May 9, 2010
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
Sunday, May 2, 2010
He now has his BSN from IWU and soon to take his test for his state license (RN) just around the corner.
Above are pictures of Jordan and I, and Jordan and Jeff right before the ceremony.
On the right is Jordan during his nursing class's pinning ceremony.
The six guys that rented house directly across the street from campus did a grab and go yesterday. It looked as though an IWU cyclone hit. Stuff everywhere! Today we get the joy of unloading the truck that we drove over.
Nevertheless, we are so very proud of Jordan and the other 443 other students that graduated (444 all together) at the 130th graduation ceremony. Here are a few pictures of the adventure.
Here are the proud parents with the graduate!
Saturday, April 17, 2010
The Place Venue
Freedom in Forgiveness Concert @ The Place
Type: Music/Arts - Concert Date: Saturday, April 17, 2010 Time: 7:00pm - 10:00pm Location: The Place Venue Street: 332 Erie st. S. City/Town: Massillon, OH
With Special quests Exit41, Brandon Wilbur and New Hope, Zach Loomis, and special speakers Jeff and Becki Reiser. Doors will open at 6:30 and event will begin at 7.
Sunday, April 11, 2010
What is the book about?
Knowing the Struggle is Over! by K.M. Johnson (Xlibris Corporation)
Frantically running towards the open doors of her life, instantly they slammed shut! Boldly marked with a going out of business sign and dead bolted closed. There it was, her life, vanishing immediately before her eyes.
After years of struggling and searching for an understanding of her life, K.M. Johnson found herself stumbling upon a spiritual journey revealing the true meaning of having faith in GOD. Knowing The Struggle Is Over takes the reader through a 3-step process in restoring their faith in GOD. This spiritual journey proves to the Christian believer that having faith in GOD is the only tool needed to overcome any struggle. Knowing The Struggle Is Over! discusses how different circumstances in life may lead to doubt, unbelief, and fear. Ms. Johnson shares her experience on how she learned to stop complaining, let go and let God, and finally acknowledge that GOD is truly in control.
Knowing The Struggle Is Over! incorporates several exercises that keep the reader fully interacted throughout their entire journey. The 3-step process may be shared with others an. Knowing The Struggle Is Over! addresses changes in today's world, the new religions that have transpired, and many of the tragedies we have encountered. The need for revisiting the foundation that Christianity is built, is fulfilled through scripture references, and comments on biblical passages profoundly embedded within each chapter. Knowing the struggle is over entails real-life applications in addition to practical messages. Whatever your situation or circumstance as you conquer this spiritual journey together with the author, you will find your pathway to Knowing The Struggle Is Over!
K. M. Johnson
About the Author:
K.M. Johnson is the CEO of Everything(s) Eventful, LLC and author of A Blog about God, by Trinite3. She graduated from Florida A&M University in 2005 with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and is currently pursuing a graduate degree in professional counseling. She travels extensively conducting inspiration and motivational seminars and workshops in the United States and across the globe. K. M. Johnson was born on the Mississippi Gulf Coast and currently resides in Houston, Texas.
She began her work in ministry after finding an understanding of what it meant to be saved. Her positive outlook in life throughout her struggles helped her to realize that her faith in God is what has continued to keep her and bring her through each and every situation she has faced. From once believing if she claimed to be “saved” she would have to be “like her mother”, to now knowing that everyone has their own spiritual journey in which they will travel, she has truly grown in her faith and transformed her faith walk into a faith strut!
K. M. ’s volunteer work includes yearly participation in Toys for Tots, Meals on Wheels, and active participation in various community events sponsored by her home churches as well as her local church.
She is continuing her work as a freelance writer, speaker, event planner, and Officer in the Army Reserves. As for other interests, K. M. enjoys singing, traveling, shopping, cooking/baking and interior decorating.
K.M., the title of your book is, Knowing The Struggle Is Over! which is very fitting for the current economic situation. I know some people may be wondering, though, what exactly is the struggle?
Honestly, I get that question often. The struggle is not your typical financial situation, or necessarily an addiction that I am speaking of. Though those are two great examples, a struggle is actually any situation, trial or tribulation you may find yourself in. When you find yourself in a struggle, it often means that you have come to a point where you must make a decision and ultimately a choice! I say this with the understanding that everything we do daily is a choice. Whether or not we say or do something is a decision that we as a person have consciously made on our own, regardless if it is wrong or right.
In your book you tell the reader that they can get through any struggle in just three steps! So what are these three steps?
The first step is to Stop Complaining. Now I must admit I did say you can get through your struggle in just three steps, but I never said it would be easy! ;) During this first step we are focusing on renewing our mind, and changing the way we view the things that are happening to us. Oftentimes, we become so caught up in the world around us that we forget about the God within us! The second step is to Let Go and Let God. For myself this was the hardest step. Mainly because I had NO idea what it meant to literally "Let Go and Let God!" Once I had an understanding, it became a natural sequence in restoring my faith in God in regards to my situation. The third step is to Acknowledge Him. Some may see that as easy and obvious, but how often do we "know" what to do and still we "don't" do it! You have to develop a major spirit of praise and give Him ALL of the glory for everything big and small. The noticeable things in our lives we always seem to give Him the glory, but God is truly in the details as well! When we begin to pay attention, and notice how He is moving and working in our lives, that is when we can truly praise Him! And a praise like that becomes a sincere and spirit filled praise! It's not forced, and you won't even have to second guess.
How did God lead you to writing this book?
It's funny and I talk about this at the beginning of my book, but at the beginning I received revelation on my drive home to Gulfport, Ms. from Houston, TX for Christmas. I was on I10 somewhere in Louisiana, and I began praying about my situation. As I finished praying, I remember thinking, "I should write a book." Now what is interesting is that not only did God impress upon me the strong desire to write a book, but He also gave me the title, and contents during that drive! By the time I had made it to my mother's house, I was so excited because I knew I was about to write this book called, "Knowing The Struggle Is Over" and I was going to have three steps that would help you accomplish just that! If I were a writer this wouldn't have sounded so crazy! ;) I never really had a true interest in writing an actual book before then. The only thing I had ever considered prior to that day was writing a children's fiction book, or maybe a few songs/poems. A non-fiction book? Absolutely NOT!
Why did you feel that it was so important to write a book about getting through a struggle?
At first I was excited because I had heard God! I mean, at the time I had been praying and constantly, but I that was the first time I could remember Him telling me to do something outside of my situation. This was around the time I began to understand "how" to be obedient. You see I also realized that what I was going through, and even what I had gone through in the past, was not for me alone, but to share with others. It's great to learn from your own mistakes, but it''s even better when you can learn from someone else's! I also realized that I wasn't in a bad place, I was just looking in the wrong place! In order to truly overcome my situations my faith had to be stronger. The bible tells us that every man is given a measure of faith, and in another scripture it tells us that all we have to have is faith the grain of a mustard seed, but I began to realize that it is easy to forget you even have that faith sometimes! So I had to find a way to get it back, each and every time, it started to look as if it wanted to disappear! Most of the time we stay in a situation because we don't know what choice or decision to make that will get us out!
Please share anything else that would help us understand the writing of your book and how it helps others.
I truly just would like for your readers to know that with everything you go through, God is preparing you for the next level He wants to take you to in life. Sometimes we think that we have a relationship and we know who God is, and we really don't. Just because you spent time with Him last week doesn't mean you can ignore Him this week. To better understand how He works and is working in our lives we have to continuously strive for a closer, more intimate relationship with Him daily! God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow, but that doesn't mean to put limits on Him, that just means to trust Him. If He did it before then surely He will do it again! We begin to lose faith because we aren't spending enough time getting to know Him. You get through your situations, by restoring your faith and developing a closer relationship with God. Everyone has an area in their relationship with God where their faith is not at the level it COULD be! If your faith is a 10 on a 1-10 scale, then strive for a 15. All this will do is help you see the other side much more clearer. Then you will find that when you are in your situation you have a confidence, and renewed peace, with an unimaginable strength to make it through!
How can readers get their hands on their own copy of this miraculous book to help them restore their faith in God?
There are several options. My book is available on both my blog: michelejenterprises.blogspot.com, and my author site: kmjohnson3stepstoknowing.com. You can also go to the ordering desk at your favorite local bookstore and have it within a few short days! It is also offered on various online stores. Regardless of how you get your copy, the most important thing is that you get your copy! This is a great way to revive your thinking and restore your faith!
PLEASE NOTE: A complimentary copy of this book was provided to the blog host by the author in exchange for posting this interview on their blog. Please visit Christian Speaker Services at www.ChristianSpeakerServices.com for more information about their blog tour management services.
Monday, April 5, 2010
When God gives you a testimony, He expects you to share it! So, I hope you are able to take some time and listen. It is about 1-1/2 hours or so.
Thursday, April 1, 2010
So, I now know that I would make a lousy nurse! My son, Jordan, definitely does not get his nursing abilities from me. My compassion has gone down the tubes, and I have to pray many times a day for God to help me to be nice. If he would just do what he is supposed to do, I might not get as upset with him. He seems to think that he should be feeling better... NO ONE told him he would at this point in time, matter of fact, everyone has told him the polar opposite, it's gonna be a long time before he feels good.
Any and all prayers would be appreciated!
I'll keep you all posted on any improvements, or any problems.
Saturday, March 20, 2010
I miss you Liz.
I Can Only Imagine by Mercy Me
I can only imagine
What it will be like
When I walk
By your side
I can only imagine
What my eyes will see
When your face
Is before me
I can only imagine
I can only imagine
Surrounded by Your glory, what will my heart feel
Will I dance for you Jesus or in honour of you be still
Will I stand in your presence or to my knees will I fall
Will I sing hallelujah, will I be able to speak at all
I can only imagine
I can only imagine
I can only imagine
When that day comes
When I find myself
Standing in the Son
I can only imagine
When all I will do
Forever worship You
I can only imagine
I can only imagine
I can only imagine [x2]
I can only imagine
When all I will do
Is forever, forever worship you
I can only imagine
Friday, March 19, 2010
Ronald K. Gray – Enter to Worship – Exit To Serve Blog Tour: March 15-29, 2010
- What is the book about? While the book’s title puts it in the praise and worship section in book stores, the book is more about the total life of the believer. Nehemiah10:39 is the core scripture for the book’s teachings. Nehemiah had gone to Jerusalem to rebuild the walls and also rebuilt the temple, restoring worship to the people. Worship was centered around sacrifice. I use the different groups pictured in Nehemiah to talk about fundamental areas of the believers life. The scripture says they would not forsake the temple of God. We have forsaken the house of God today. We are so busy with our agendas, we have left the true reason for worship. God is looking for something real from our lives, not just our words.
- Why Enter to Worship and Exit to Serve? The life of the believer comes from our life in God. We bring to Him a sacrifice of our monies, our gifts, our fruit and lay it at His feet. The premise for most Christians today is what can God do for them instead of how can I worship God with all that is within me. The scriptures teach us that everyone has something to offer. When we worship in the fullness of our lives, God then fills us to be able to affect our world. We then exit to serve God through proclaiming His Word, serving those around us and exalting His name in all the earth. Everything we do in church is to help us fulfill God’s calling on our lives in the world.
- Why do you talk about money? The very first thing that was brought into the temple was an offering of grain or corn. This is symbolic of money. I go to Kenya every year and they trade their corn for other items such as meat, oil, etc. God is interested in our money. He speaks of money more than He does either prayer or heaven. I think there has been a lot of negative about money and there has been a lot of error through the years. I hope that what I teach in the book is balanced. Many pastors have said this teaching has helped their churches understand the truth about tithes, first fruits and seed offerings
- What do you think is the most important chapter of the book? In over 35 years of full time ministry, I have never heard anyone else teach about porters. In Nehemiah 10:39 it lists porters between priest and singers. I thought that was very interesting and researched porters. It is basically a janitor. So between priests and porters are janitors. Servants that do the basics. People who do ordinary things to keep ministries going. God wants servants. That is a concept that is lost in the big time world of church ministries today. Jesus came to serve. I believe that we can make a difference in our community, our neighborhoods, and our world if we are willing to lay our lives down to serve God.
- What do you hope to accomplish with your book? I hope that ordinary believers will recognize they have something to offer. We can bring our monies and touch the nations. We can bring our gifts and see the power of God touch people and their needs. We can offer our fruit and not wait for the pastors or elders, but be instruments to bring life to those around us who are seeking a relevant relationship with Jesus. The five fold ministries of Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Pastor and Teacher were never supposed to do everything in the church. The church is supposed to be equipped for ministry. Everyone should be able to proclaim the message and everyone should have praise for the God we serve. That should not happen just on Sunday mornings between 10 a.m. and 12 noon. We should be able to give God praise in our homes and throughout the week. I truly believe this can be the church’s finest hour.
- Where are these resources available to purchase? You can obtain this book and many other resources on my web site at RonaldGrayMinistries.org.
- Are there other available resources connected with this book? Yes, I taught my book at a conference and had it professionally recorded on video and audio. These sessions are great for small groups and Bible studies. There is a Study Guide to help the leader go through the sessions. The book and the video
Ronald K. Gray – Enter to Worship – Exit To Serve Blog Tour: March 15-29, 2010
About the Author
Ronald K. Gray
Author & Speaker
Find out about how to have Ronald speak for your church or men's event - CLICK HERE
Ronald Gray serves the Kingdom of God through sharing the uncompromised Word of God. He has been faithful to his call since 1974. He is on the board of International Outreach Ministries and Charles Simpson Ministries. He is the Director of Mission Growth for IOM leading short-term teams to various countries in the world. Ronald began his ministry with Gulf Coast Teen Challenge in Pensacola, FL. He has served as an Associate Pastor and Senior Pastor. Ronald and his wife Sharon, have lived in the Mobile, AL area since 1995. He and Sharon have two daughters and four grandchildren. Ronald has traveled extensively in the United States and in over 38 countries, spreading the message of the Kingdom of God. Many people have received salvation, healing, restoration and deliverance in their lives.