A God Who Delights in Mercy…Like You


Hello everyone, how are you doing on this blustery fall evening?  Hope all is well with you…

So, this is my 100th blog and as I write this, I am reflecting on a final paper on the prophet Micah that I just wrote for my prophets class…

The passage that I based the paper on was Micah 7:1-20 and one of the verses was as follows:

Micah 7:18 (NIV):

Who is a God like you,
    who pardons sin and forgives the transgression
    of the remnant of his inheritance?
You do not stay angry forever
    but delight to show mercy.

This passage starts out with how the prophet is upset because the leaders of Judah are corrupt and even those within the community from friends to family members have turned against each other…sort of reminds me of today’s times.  Yet Micah wrote about a God who is merciful and does not stay angry with his people forever.  That the problems of the world can be overcome through God’s salvation…

Questions:

1) when  you hear a phrase “who is a God like you,” what do you think of?  Negative or positive thoughts?

2) If negative, do you know where these thoughts are coming from?  Have you been hurt by corruption or even people turning against you?  I’m praying for you and I know the feeling…I once thought God was negative because of the words Father that were associated with Him because of bad experiences yet after prayer and listening to a message one night, I realized He’s an Abba Father who does not stay angry forever and loves to have compassion and mercy on His children. Yeah, He may get angry at times because of things like social injustice, corrupt people, idol worship, and so on but He doesn’t stay angry forever and He forgives people because He loves them.

3) If positive, good for you and maybe use the positive thoughts to encourage those who are discouraged by negative thoughts?

So, I leave you with these thoughts and prayers that all is well with you…and remember God DELIGHTS to show His mercy…

I’m going to put together a contest soon to celebrate 100 blogs and I started a class on World Religions about the different religions around the world and how we as Christians can reach out to them…so stay tuned for the contest and a few words on what I am learning…

Blessings to all of you and sticking with me through the journey of 100 blogs…

Blank Pages


So, where are  you with your walk with Jesus?  Have you accepted Him as your personal Savior or are you still in the stage of not quite sure you want to go in that direction?

Next, are you totally devoted to Christ, broken and  humbled before Him as you draw near and completely surrendered to Him?  Or, are you saved, yet you do not know what to do next?  Do you drift from one church activity to the next, not really know Jesus and who He is…not being completely surrendered, humble before Him?

For many years, and even now, I have been the person drifting from one activity to the next…after all, I grew up in the church and thought I knew it all when it came to the Bible and even how to act in church.   Yet, then my world came crashing down on me as my marriage ended and my son was taken from me…then I had to surrendered myself to Him and desire to know Him more.  I then realized He has always been with me even when I turned my back on Him during the marriage.

I haven’t been perfect with my walk as I still struggle with it; however, the more I resist, the more He seems to remain with me.

Yet one thing missing from my walk is discipleship such as not praying or even reading His word – the Bible – as much as I should.  Many times I shrug it off as too busy but I can’t be too busy for Him.  If I can watch hours of TV then I should have hours of time devoted to Him.

By now you are asking – is Ann rambling on in this post?  It may seem like I am but its about the next series of blogs.  I will be devoting time writing about that blank page or even a page that is a bit dirty but can become white and clean as you build your journey with Christ.

So stay tuned…I may not write every week or even write a few times a week, depending on my schedule.  I hope to have a few guest bloggers sharing their own journey.

So, if you want to share tips on your journey with Christ or have questions that you want answered, please feel free to send me a private message either here on this page or  at https://www.facebook.com/vsn63.  Your identity will remain anonymous…

Blessings, my friends!

My testimony…early years


So, you’re probably wondering who is this person who puts out these blogs and how have I learned to be full of peace, for the most part…did I live a good life?  Has it always been so grand for me?

No, it has not so I thought I would share my testimony with y’all and let you know about me and how God has brought me out of some dark spots, which I have hinted at throughout my blogs.  this testimony will be part of a series for the next week or so as I discuss who I am, the good times, and even some of the trials that I have experienced in over forty years of living.

First, I come from a family of five children and a mom and a dad who will be celebrating 49 years of marriage this summer after meeting at a bible college up north.  There are numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, and a host of other relatives too numerous to count.  My ancestry goes back quite a ways – all the way to Sir William Isaac Wallace…possibly further…on my mom’s side – plus other interesting ancestors on both sides of the family.  Yet we seem to be unique and quite the adventuresome and creative type of people who love each other…

Yet, even with the love, there were the scars…

The first scar happened when I was about 2 years old and decided to climb on a table when my mom was not looking and then I fell, with a glass in my hand, and a cut on my cheek that is still somewhat visible today.  Though I do not remember the fall, I would remain afraid of heights for most of my life.  I put my guardian angels to work that day since it just barely missed my eye and I was not more seriously hurt.

More scars would occur throughout my growing up years that include abuse by neighbors and family…a sister who strayed from home…death of relatives…an attack that left me afraid to walk alone at night for most of my life…yet as I walked through each dark place, God was there alongside me, guiding, leading, comforting, and protecting.

Yet even in these dark days of my youth, God was still there, walking alongside me as  I became involved in various activities like drama, choir, Foreign Language club, FBLA, WA State Patrol Explorers, and other activities including the only female in a space club!  I was even involved with a bible study at school and have many exciting adventures along the way like an expo, an FBLA convention, youth conventions and camps…yet as I walked through each of these, God was still there.  Encouraging me as I focused on community, school, and friends.  My hobbies were writing, drawing, imagination, singing, exploring, and being silly.

Then there were my friends…my first boyfriend in fifth grade who I discovered is on Facebook after almost 30 years of no contact yet I held on to the letters that he gave me.  There were the two girls – Sara and Tina – who I have lost track of and would love to find.  We were the misfits – the unpopular kids – yet we bonded through being creative and acting like teen girls – pictures and stories are the only mementos I have of these two girls .  Finally, there was the friend from Norway, a pen pal, who I lost track of until Facebook brought us together again.  My favorite mementos of her are the postcards from all over Europe and a Christmas ornament that I hang on my tree every year.  Someday, I will have to visit Norway – the land of my dad’s people and the home of such a good friend.

Then the times spent at my grandparents’ place in Eastern Washington – an orchard and a single wide mobile home and tons of fun in the orchard and their lake.  Cousins from afar came every summer and we teased each other, went skinny dipping, and even cried together at times.  My favorite memory – walking around the lake with my grandpa and just hanging with him…those were the good times and now the place is a distant memory as the county turns it into a refuge for wildlife…so fitting since it was a refuge for me to get away from the dark times at home.  Yet, these dark times and the memories at my grandparents’ place have given me a dream to someday open up a similar refuge for those wounded by life.

Finally, I grew up with animals.  My mom says I had a cat when I was a baby and over the years I would grow to love cats.  Along the way, I would have chickens, turkeys, rabbits, and other animals as I bonded with them including a chicken named Cinnamon who let me hold her or the rooster that became dinner after he attacked a few of us kids.  Yes, many of our animals became dinner and I had to help pluck them…such a great childhood.  Of course, there was the time my sister and I chased the chickens and other animals around with a hose…boy oh boy…did we get in trouble…yet it was all fun.

So, what memories do you have your childhood?  Are they good or bad?  Perhaps do a timeline to see what you have experienced in your life…you may be surprised with what you find.

Time…a slower pace of life


It’s been an interesting time these learning that every thing seems to be moving at a slower pace – even traffic is different than Western Washington.

For instance, today I drove 30 miles east to the local Kia dealer for an oil change – after all, we’ve driven our vehicle back and forth quite a bit in the last few months.  Unfortunately, this is the only Kia dealer in the area – I think east of the Cascades – so I had no choice but to drive this distance.  I’ve been spoiled by the dealership that was only about 10 miles from home and there were others not far from even that dealership.

The appointment was at 8 in the morning – after all, in Western Washington, things were crazy by 7:30 for even car appointments.  So I got up early and prepared to give myself at least an hour to deal with traffic and find my way to the place.  After all, before it took up to half an hour to drive 10 miles in Western Washington and more if I wanted to stop at a local coffee shop for breakfast while I wait for the work to be done.

Lo and behold – it took just 10 minutes to get to the downtown Spokane area and about 15 minutes to get to the dealership and that included a detour to get donuts at a favorite donut shop only to change my mind to find a local Starbucks – something I’ve not had since we moved here.  After all, they are not on every corner here nor are they in every local grocery store –  the nearest one is 15 – 20 minutes away!

The line at Starbucks was at least 10 – 15 car lengths and I was expecting quite a wait – after all, normally it took at least 15 – 20 minutes in Western Washington to get through such a long line.  Lo and behold – I had my order in 10 minutes and the guy was kind enough to help me make sure I was going in the right direction for the dealership.

Next, came the road construction on my final leg of the journey!  Expecting a loooong wait, I prepared myself to wait as we were stopped by the flagger – after all, I was at least 20 – 25 minutes early for my appointment.  My oh my!  It took just a few minutes with just a few cars and we were on our way.  I made it to my appointment less than 5 minutes later with still time to spare.

The next wait was in the waiting room as my vehicle took about the same amount of time it would take in Western Washington but no one else was there (except staff) and comfy chairs so I sat back and enjoyed my Grande hot chocolate (not a coffee person) and blueberry scone!  After all, in Western Washington, at least 5 other people would still be waiting.

Once I had my vehicle back, home I went in less than 30 minutes of driving…with a few crazy people on the road (they are every where) and most people driving at a slow even pace.  Yet, the world did not end as people take their time to enjoy life in this community.

Time…according to Ecclesiastes 3:1 (New International Version) “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.”  This passage goes on to describe a time to be born and so on yet we all need to slow down and enjoy life.  We move in such a fast pace world as time goes on.  Let’s all start slowing down and enjoying life a bit more.

Time – what can you do to slow down your hectic fast pace world?  Please feel free to comment.

In the meantime, I will be working on retraining my brain in this slow paced world to slow down a bit and enjoy life on our new journey.