When you are reading here whether you found me intentionally or accidently, please take time to leave a comment and let me know where you are and what you are thinking. I love feed back. Vondi

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Day and Night Employment

"And these are the singers ... they were employed in that work day and night." 1 Chronicles 9:33.
This verse came to my attention. Think about it. These singers were placed in the temple to sing praises to God day and night. Just as God's mercy was enduring so were the songs of praise to be offered day and night. That was their only responsibility--to ensure that praises were constantly going up to Jehovah..
Then I thought how just as Gods love for US in this day of grace, is enduring and his Help is every available for us to utilize, so should our praise be constant. Not that we need to go around "Thank you, Jesus." "Hallelujah" all the time, Because that becomes hypocritical and false after a time. But our hearts should always be in a state of praise and worship before the Lord. We must always be aware of His Presence in our lives and stay our focus on His Salvation..
Christ has promised His Spirit to dwell with us daily as long as we hold ourselves before Him and obey His Word.  The Lord blesses us daily with life and breath and His Power to help us live pleasing to Him and he is deseving of our constant awareness of Him. If we keep our hearts in an attitude of thankfulness and praise it will keep the Enemy of our soul at bay. It is difficult to be tempted when our mind and heart is stayed on Him.

Monday, June 24, 2013

in the Cleft of the Rock

I do most of my ‘deep’ thinking early in the morning. Today I was meditating on how wonderful it is to rest in the Lord.  I know for me it is something I depend on fully but don’t often try to verbalize. 

I was thinking of all the scriptures that describe the state of being that the Lord offers His Own.  One scripture and a hymn stood out. 

“The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms:” Deut. 33:27  Consider the toddler when Daddy (or Mommy) comes home after an absence. The child races across the room and launches himself into his father’s arms, fully confident that he will be caught.  The seem to have no fear of heights or depths or scary situations as long as daddy’s arms are holding him  We can have that same confidence and the arms that hold us know no weakness or tiring.

Fanny Crosby wrote many of our most beautiful hymns.  One of them describes how we are protected by the savior.   

“He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock,
That shadows a dry, thirsty land;
He hideth my life in the depths of His love,
And covers me there with His hand,
And covers me there with His hand.”

What a safe place to be! I have a picture in my mind of standing in a small cleft of rock in the desert.  The tall rocks tower up on three sides and I look out across a hot and barren land full of dangers.  And all the while I’m safe there in the cozy corner protected by the Hand of God. 

We have to face the world, but the Hand of God protects our eternal soul from danger.  And, yes, many, many times our physical body is held safe.  But regardless of physical harm we know of a surety that the most vital part of us is safe in God’s Hands.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Modern Christian Music

Folks, If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, sounds like a duck, it IS a duck.  If it looks like a wolf, acts like a wolf, sounds like a wolf, it IS a wolf!  Don't be deceived just cuz the title on the album cover says Christian"  "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. "Matt 7:15

Our TV cable package includes a series of music stations. During the day I usually play either the Classical station or the “Easy Listening” lineup softly in the background.

Yesterday I either dropped the remote or sat on it. (I don’t remember which.)  But suddenly this wild, weird, pounding music exploded across the room.  I grabbed the remote and looked up. I thought it was a worldly rock station.  I was shocked to see that I had switched it to a ‘Christian’ music station.   I could hardly decipher the words, but the SPIRIT blasted out with all the ravening power of Satan. 

Before you get up in arms, you really should read this…

Dan Lucarini, a former worship leader in the contemporary church scene, left the ‘Christian Music’ genre that mimics modern pop, rock, hip hop, and/or jazz, etc has taken a stand against the music he once promoted. 

Read his comments here and then check out his book.  I don’t know what his understanding is of the scriptures or even whether or not he is fundamentalist or what, but his stand on Modern ‘Christian’ music is sound.

At the heart of his argument is that rock music, and all forms of it, is a music style that was created by immoral men for immoral purposes.

Whether it's soft rock, pop/rock, jazz, praise and worship, Chris Tomlin, Delirious? or Hillsong, CCM is "scandalous and offensive because of where it came from and what it means around us in the world today," he argues.

"And I don't believe that Christians can just take it and sanctify it and call it holy," he says to those who say it can be used to reach people for God. "I think it's a mistake."

It's like serving a nice juicy steak on a garbage can lid (even if you try to scrub it, it remains a dirty garbage can lid), he explains.

Remembering Linda

Michael brought home the DVD for “The Hobbit.”  Of course I watched it.  I’ve written of the Tolkien stories before in these blogs

I first found The Hobbit when I was in about the sixth or seventh grade, perhaps 1957.  It may have been before that because I began reading from the adult section as soon as I was allowed.  I believe that was at the beginning of the eight grade.  I found The Hobbit in the children’s section of the library.  I can even remember exactly where I was standing when I found it—in the front left hand corner of the library.  There was a shelf section of about eight feet or so between the corner and the window.  The hobbit was on the second or third shelf in about the middle.  I remember because I went back there to pick up The Hobbit again several times even after I graduated to the adult section.  It was considered a “children’s book.”

The Trilogy of the Rings did not become widely available in the US until later in the 1950’s and I probably found it in 1959 or ‘60.  I devoured that as soon as I discovered it on the adult shelves.

When Peter Jackson presented his movie version of the Trilogy I was excited to see it, even though many of the exciting portions had to be cut in order to keep it from becoming a long running series instead of three movies.  In the end of 2012, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey opened and just a few days ago it came out on DVD.   Michael and Rachael surprised me with it Friday evening.  Saturday morning (March 23) I watched The Hobbit: The Unexpected Journey.  It was ‘okay’ but only because I had read the book before.  If I hadn’t known the story I would have said the movie was great.  This morning I watched the second disc.  It was a compilation of ‘extras”—scenes of New Zealand, video blogs about production, and copies of the trailers as well as previews of the games the movie has spawned.

The blogs were what impressed me the most.  They were made to give fans insights into the production and shooting of the movie. 

When I was director of the day care, my head teacher for quite a few years was Linda Mitchell.  I’m not sure how she became involved in day care but she was an excellent early childhood teacher without the degree in early childhood education.  Her first love however was the theater and movies.  Her bachelor’s degree was in Theater, I believe.  She was involved the local little theater group, interested in movies and sci fi conventions. We spent a lot of time, in between the business of caring for children and the needs of the day care, talking about the little theater.  Linda was seldom involved in the on-stage aspects of the productions, the acting, singing, dancing, etc.  She was interested in the back stage production.

 These video blogs have brought memories of her back in force.  How she would have loved the scope and wonder of the Rings and the Hobbit!  The intricacies involved in costuming especially would have drawn her in.  I was amazed to see the actors and then the dwarves they became.  Because there were 13 of them and they were the ‘stars’ of the show, their costumes involved foot after foot after foot of costumes for the myriad of scenes and actions.  Transforming them from men into dwarves required several hours of make-up.  I enjoyed watching the process.  Linda would have loved the wigs and prosthetics and actual make-up to achieve coloring that would film correctly!

The set requirements were extensive.  Hobbiton was built of polystyrene for the Rings movies.  For The Hobbit it was built of real materials on site then left for tourists to experience.  The intricate planning and construction was breath taking.  And of course, not everything could be filmed on site so there were acres it seemed of sites constructed on the production lots—the goblin caves, Elrond’s house, the interior of Bilbo’s hobbit-hole.  And they were all intricate to the last detail. It took my breath away.  I could envision Linda involved in each and every part of it, whichever allowed her talents for drawing, painting and creating effects.

For the very first time I caught a glimpse of the reason for her fascination with behind the scenes work for the theater and, by extension, movies. 

Linda Mitchell, you were loved and remembered fondly.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Treasure hunters

If we are searching for natural treasures of this earth, we go looking in places where they are to be found. Precious gems are deep underground buried in rock and shale or tucked away in a little clam like creature deep underwater.  Precious metals are intertwined in a matrix of rock buried in the hearts of mountains.
We don’t expect to find those treasures sitting in our arm chair before a cozy fire.  If we want them we must go looking in the right places, deep in mines, drilling digging searching.  We bestir ourself and go after them.  Talking about searching does no good.  Speculating with others doesn’t help. Reading stories of men who found treasures is encouraging, but they put no diamonds in our hand. We must put the effort and sweat and time into finding them ourselves.
It is the same way with the treasures of Christ Jesus. If we want the pearls of great price and the gold tried in the fire they only come through our effort and sweat and time spent in the Word and in prayer before Him.  Talking about the riches of faith is of no use in establishing our own.  Speculating about the blessings He has doesn’t bring them showering over us. Reading and hearing accounts of the faith in other men and women doesn’t give us the faith to see the same miracles in our own. 
We only grow in Christ and achieve a strong faith in Him by spending time in the Word—not in other’s men’s explanations of it or in a short ‘devotion’ from a handy little booklet.  We must spend time reading and reading and reading the Bible while the Holy Spirit points out the gems of understanding he has particularly for us.  Then we gather those into our heart treasure to be held and pondered.  After years of reading and study with that great Comforter we find we have accumulated a treasure of gold tried in the fire and our faith will shine as a beacon to those weighted down with doubt and worry.
We live in a day of immediate gratification.  We want our goodies NOW.  Kids don’t think the should deliver papers or mow lawns to save for their expensive toys; the expect their parents to hand them over.   Teens don’t want to practice abstinence until marriage, they want their sexual gratification NOW. Young marrieds don’t want to start our in a three room apartment with an old stove and refrigerator and a table that tips at one corner.  They demand a house as nice as the ones they see on television, decorated with expensive furniture.  And they want it all NOW.
We have applied the same demanding greediness to our spiritual life.  We want to come to the Lord and immediately have a complete grasp of His Word.  We want to be able to pray and have our prayers answered immediately if not sooner.  We want to expound the scriptures to our friends and be regarded as a Man or Woman of Faith.  We want our treasures before digging them from the depths of the scripture.  We want the pearl of great price with out diving into the Word.  We want the gold without the refining fire.
It doesn’t happen that way.  We have to spend the time searching the Word.  We have to spend time in the fire.    “. . .unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;  3 In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.  Colossians 2:2-3    That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: I Peter 1:7

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Continuing Saga of a New Child of God.

Talked to Dawn this morning. They spent their first night in the new house. She was excited that even with furniture and boxes piled everywhere and a mere path through the downstairs, she slept better than she had in weeks! She said there is such a sense of peace she couldn't describe it.  She said she has never known such peace.

The other blessing for me is that the Lord is cleaning up her life. She told me yesterday of how He had already helped her deal with her overpowering anger with her kids and cleaning up her potty mouth. Now He has dealt with her about her smoking!

PRAISE THE LORD! I didn't say a single thing about it! "But God..." (as another friend commented yesterday).  GOD dealt with her. First she was convicted of it and began trying to stop. This morning she said she lit a cigarette first thing when she got up (smokers can relate to that) She said she took three puffs of it and was repulsed buy the look and taste and smell.

Isn't that just like our God! I've known a lot of "wanna-be Christians" who have complained that they 'can't' quit and God understands that kind of addiction and others that said, "God doesn't care if they smoke (and do a lot of other things)."  But here is a wonderful example of what God does and doesn't want in our lives if we live for him!

If we REALLY mean to serve Him, He gives us the Power to do it.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Rejoicing over Blessings.

Regarding yesterday's post here, Dawn said: "I am not ashamed to say who I am. Dawn Marie Harlan Green and I'm now a Christian. God is so good. Praise be everyone here.  This is my testimony.  Thank You, Vondi"

I’ve been rejoicing over the blessings the Lord has showered on my friend the last couple days. They just seem to keep piling up. She called last evening and said, “You are going to have to add more to my testimony.” ( Right now she is operating off a cell phone—kinda hard to write much)

Yesterday after she talked to me she had to run to her mother in law's for something and her son called to tell her they had just received a three day eviction notice. They have three days to be moved.

Now here is the part that blesses me—God had ALREADY planned that all out! The house, the electricity, the gas, the large appliances (Oh, I didn’t mention that, the land lord had promised to move some of the large appliances in. Those went in yesterday.)

Remember the scripture: “Before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.”   Well, it happened just that way. That three day notice would have knocked her off her feet, but the Lord already had her support system in place! Isn’t that great!

And before she left her mother in law’s house the case worker, who had been working with them since the violence incident and her husband’s arrest, called to say they had a RENT check ready to send as soon as she got them the name and address of her new landlord. All I can say is: I’ve never seen JFS work that fast. She only notified her caseworker late on Friday of the new housing situation!

They spent the day moving furniture. As of last evening, the old house is nearly empty!

But here is the icing on the cake. Last night…nine or nearly ten o’clock…she called, so excited. She had filed their income taxes a while back and was hoping that the return would come by the end of March when she had arranged with a couple of her bill collectors to make a catch up payment. So when she got home tonight—to her mattress on the floor—she laid down and was scrolling through her email and found a note about her taxes. Thinking it was just a message confirming her filing she passed over it, then she found a second message about the same thing.

THEN she read them both and paid attention. There were phone numbers and passwords.  When she called them she discovered that her tax return had already been deposited in her account. THREE WEEKS BEFORE IT WAS DUE!

To say she could hardly contain herself is an under statement.

I have laughed and cried until my face hurts. The blessings have certainly been showered over her. But then she really needed them. 


Monday, February 11, 2013

God Is Taking a Hand

I just spoke with the friend who was saved a couple weeks ago. If you read my page, you’ll remember her.

She is rejoicing up and down and over and over. She was about to lose her house; the Lord provided another for her. She needs to be out of her current rental home soon and she was worried about getting the gas transferred and also the electric. In a ten minute conversation she has the gas arranged and it will be turned on TOMORROW between 8 and noon! The electricity will go on I don’t remember when she said!

Another old friend has told her just a few minutes ago that he and his mother are sitting in the gas station…(somewhere, don’t remember where, I was so excited) with a tank full of gas just waiting for her to call that she is at the house. They are ready to help haul furniture all day!

She drove her mother-in-law to visit her husband on…Friday, I believe she said. She spoke to him for a while. He THANKED HER for calling the authorities and having him jailed! WOW! She spoke with him on the phone later and said the conversation blessed her.

She is not planning to have him move home anytime soon, but she is trusting in the scripture: “But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart. A brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases: but God hath called us to peace. 16 For what knowest thou, O wife, whether thou shalt save thy husband?”
I am thrilled at the things she has overcome since she gave her heart and life to the Lord. She told me this morning, “I am so so ashamed of the woman I was!”

She testified of the way the Lord is showing her things to change in her life. Her little girl was in trouble this morning and she said, “I felt it, I felt that [mean anger] bubbling up inside me and I stopped and said a little prayer not to do that!” And she didn’t get so horribly and hatefully angry. She said she told her daughter very plainly what the standard was and told her very plainly what the consequence was…

She said the dirty mouth that she was so prone to has also gone the way of the hateful anger. She has stopped swearing and using foul language and even when a word seems about to slip she has stopped herself. AND ALREADY it has made an impression on her oldest son—he has cleaned his language up without any reprimand or sermon from her.

She was rejoicing over and over this morning. She doesn't have a 'sin more or less every day religion!" It made me laugh and cry and rejoice. Tell me our God isn’t Great! I can tell you other wise!

Keep her in your prayers. You KNOW Satan will come in like a flood.
(Here's the message she left on Facebook yesterday.)
Good morning Momma#2 , lets just see how life goes today, new day, new things to live for... looks like I have been searching for the light at the end of the tunnel in all the wrong places. for the first time in months and months I woke up and didn't have a cloudy head... I did thank God, even if you gave us rain today... love you much talk to you later (Jan 30)

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Angels in Heaven are rejoicing 'round the throne

I  just had the most wonderful blessing! My friend, who I've dealt with off and on all day about living for the Lord and really selling out to Him, doing things HIS way and not her own way, earlier this evening called to say she had prayed it all out! Praise the Lord.

I said, "Are you completely right with God." and she said, with a joy in her voice, "I AM!"  

Isn't that great!
Now here is the icing on the cake. She just called back to say that she had gotten word that her husband, who is in jail, had gone to church there this evening. After a long day of wrestling with God and herself and the heartache of confusion one of her greatest burdens was that she loves this man. She said,  "What if I go to heaven and he goes to hell, it will break my heart."
I told her that SHE was to be the example to lead him to serve the Lord.... And she accepted that! WOW!
And now after all those tears, she finds that he took that first tiny step and went to church services at the jail. To be saved and then get that wonderful blessing all in the same day! I thought the lady ws going to explode!
Those of you who know the Lord REJOICE with me.