BUDGET HOTEL

I went to visit my son this weekend in Louisiana. He has moved from the dorm to a house with some of his fraternity brothers. I was very concerned before I left because once again my paycheck from my current company was not very much. We had talked about where I would spend the night. I didn’t have money to book a room in a hotel so we discussed the possibility of me staying in his house.

I had done that before when I went to visit my son in Florida after he had a scooter accident. His roommates were so sweet they didn’t even complain about me sleeping on their couch. They were amazing young men but I didn’t know how these frat boys would feel with me staying in their house.

I had thought I could avoid the whole situation if I just left in the middle of the night on Saturday morning. I figured if I left at 4 or 5 am I could still spend most of the day with him and then turn right around and spend Saturday night at my house. Problem was that we were expecting another torrential downpour and I didn’t want to drive through flooding, or in the dark, if it was raining hard.

I decided to leave on Friday afternoon. The traffic getting out of the metroplex was a bit of a challenge but by the time I hit I-20, I was good to go. I got there at about 8:30 pm. I took him out to eat at Arby’s because I had a coupon. We even got a better deal than the coupon because they were out of roast beef and we got two chicken sandwiches for less than the coupon would have gotten us two roast beef. (That is called a God intervention. 🙂

Then we went back to his house and we arranged all of the things I had brought him from my home. He was so sweet he hung out with me and we watched a movie or at least tried to but it kept stalling. We talked about the night time arrangements and he said I could sleep in his bed and he would sleep on the couch. He even showed me where his ear plugs were because his fan was making a loud noise.

In the morning I apologized to him for being in a predicament where I could not help him out financially. He said he hadn’t expected me to, he just wanted me to bring some stuff from home. I did buy him a desk at a thrift store which will work perfectly for him and I did also take him out to lunch and a movie. I bought him some other things at Walmart and the Dollar Store so it wasn’t so much that I didn’t want to spend money on him, it just was that I didn’t want to spend money on me and a hotel stay would have been doing just that.

After the movie I told him what a good kid he was. I have been blessed with three good kids. As we were driving out of the movie theater parking lot he asked how I had slept. I had actually had a terrific sleep in his bed, noisy fan and all. I had even felt a bit grungy and I still slept fine.

I started thinking about how some people sleep in very fancy hotels and have money to spend on themselves. I realized that one of the reasons I don’t have much money is because I have three kids in college right now and even though I am a skilled professional, my current job does not provide enough income for me. Sometimes I wish I was better off financially but today I realized one very important thing. I may not have a lot of money in the bank but I have been blessed with three wonderful children whom I enjoy tremendously. I would take those three children over a million nights in a five star hotel any day.

PREDESTINATION

Alright just one more post on that group of Christians I met the other night, then I will try not to write about them anymore.

They were under the impression that God determines who will be saved. This thought process is called predestination or Calvinism. People who believe this think it is not us who chose salvation, it is God who draws us near to Salvation. They were focusing on Romans 9 for their belief.

There are quite a few verses which support this line of thinking so it definitely has some value but so much more which refute it. I am thinking of Jeremiah 29:11-13, “For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. Then you will call upon Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you seek me with your whole heart.”

I think that God has given us free will for a reason. He wants us wanting Him. What good would it be if He was picking, choosing and manipulating us into submission? That isn’t a God whom I would love. I think that there is a sweetness and a purity to His allowing us free will.

We got into a heated debate. Finally I had to leave cause I had to work in the morning. Thanking God for that excuse right now. lol

It astounds me that I have had more civil discussions with Muslims about my beliefs than I had with these Christians. With a Muslim doctor I merely laid my beliefs out on the table and he did the same, then we agreed that we could respectfully disagree. I became friends with him and his family because of our mutual respect.

It saddens me that I could not have the same amount of understanding and compassion with these Christians as I have had with some Muslims.

The most unusual thought occurred to me as I was driving away. One of the people in this group goes to a nearby suburb and carries a cross through a shopping center so that he can witness to people. The thought occurred to me, “If he actually thinks that God is in control of choosing which person accepts Christ and who doesn’t, then why the heck is he wasting his precious time trying to witness to strangers?”

THE HOLY SPIRIT

I mentioned previously about the small group of Bible believing Christians I had met. Apparently they all went to a Bible church. These people were into the study of Theology and they did not believe that the Holy Spirit communicated with people.

The guy who invited me said that someone he knew had said he saw Jesus while he was shaving. He basically thought that was a bunch of bull. I had asked him previously if he had ever heard that still, quiet voice speak into his heart. He said he felt God moving in his spirit. In other words, no, he hadn’t.

I mentioned to him that when Jesus ascended to heaven he did so to release the Comforter. He got angry and said that people needed to respect the Holy Spirit more. Alrighty then… I guess we will just throw the Trinity out the window for this man.

But I have a slight problem with that, I have heard God speak several times. It is the one thing I desire more than anything. To hear God takes my breath away. It is always pure truth and wisdom when I hear Him speak. I don’t hear Him that much anymore but it is interesting that sometimes it seems that He interjects into my thinking. So he doesn’t need to speak to me because he can think to me now. Seems a bit more intimate, wouldn’t you say?

Of course I didn’t mention that at all in the midst of this group. It would appear to be throwing my pearls before swine but I did reflect on some of my disbelief with people’s encounters with the Holy Spirit.

At that healing service I went to where the “prophet” was at, I saw someone fall down to the ground and supposedly that is because they were slain in the Spirit. I have never encountered that, nor do I understand it, but I did certainly judge those “slain” people as a bit out of the ordinary. Just because I don’t understand it does not mean it is not of God. All it means is that I don’t understand it.

This man who invited me into this group loves God and seeks to abide by His word but he is missing out on the intimacy of hearing God’s whisper. I fear for him also, because to blaspheme the Holy Spirit is the one sin which is not forgivable.

It was a grueling evening to say the least. I felt attacked and put on the spot for my relationship with God. I did not in any way feel loved. So as I got in the car I started praying for this man to have an encounter with the Holy Spirit. I had kind of a dialogue with God and asked Him if He could possibly show up when this man was shaving. Then the giggles started and I had a hard time shutting them down.

HEAVEN?

There have been a few books written and one movie done which are first hand accounts of people dying, going to heaven and then being revived again.

One of those books has recently been exposed as a misguided plea for attention and not based on fact. I was with a small collection of people the other night who stated that seeing heaven was impossible.

This collection of people were all Bible believing Christians and they thought that anyone who had seen heaven would have been in the presence of God. They went on and on about how all of these people who had supposedly seen heaven were liars.

Those of you who have read this blog may know my story and that is that I believe I was allowed to see heaven and I didn’t even die. I was allowed to see both of my precious children whom I had miscarried and it was in the heavenly realm. Needless to say I did not mention this event to this group because this is a very special event in my life and one which I protect dearly. I merely smiled and gently nudged them to accept something which they were dead set on not accepting.

I am not going to debate the reality of those who have written books on going to heaven because of one thing. I did not experience their reality. If they died and the experience that they encountered when dying was one which was similar to a heavenly experience, who am I to tell them they had it wrong?

I believe that the glory of God is only a smidgen of what we, as humans, can imagine and the magnificence of heaven being far greater than our imagination.

These Christians said that none of those who had experienced life after death had described heaven as it was described in the Bible so therefore it was false. Apparently they have not read the verse, I Corinthians 12:9 ” Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man, the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

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REALITY

I read the tragic news today about the death of John Nash. I saw the movie “The Beautiful Mind” and it was one of the best I have seen. Since seeing that movie I have been a bit fascinated by schizophrenia.

As I was watching that movie I remember being pulled into the mind of Mr. Nash, thinking that his delusions were reality.

When I was going to nursing college, I remember that the interventions that my college professors suggested we use on schizophrenics was to try and re-orientate them to our reality.

I thought that was the most useless of all theories. Once a mind goes delusional, reality is no longer within their grasp. To orientate someone to reality who is paranoid is as useless as trying to catch a butterfly by blowing a trumpet.

Recently one of my Alzheimer’s patients had a lapse into delusional thinking. I was called out to assess the situation. By the time I got to the house the patient had calmed down and I noted no change in her from my previous visit.

Apparently something had happened during the night which had upset her and made her feel unsafe. I emphasized to the caregivers the importance of making this patient feel safe. It did not matter if she was in a delusion or not, what mattered most is that she felt protected in whatever reality she was in.

I recalled a story I had read about one Alzheimer’s patient who had the delusion that his bedroom was inhabited by hostile polar bears. His sweet caregiver got a can of air freshener and started spraying that spray wherever the man said that the polar bears were. She said that the spray was a polar bear killer. Once she had sprayed each and every space that the polar bears had been the man was no longer scared. The polar bears had vanished.

Somehow I think it may be imperative to step into someone else’s reality to fully understand the reality that that person beholds. Maybe that is one of the reasons why God became a man, through Jesus Christ His Son.

MS Grundy and Ms Chamberlin

So far I have been mostly silent on the racial divide in America. I can do this because I am not racist. I have friends of all races and many nationalities. I have written a few posts but I have largely refrained.

Today as I was checking the news I saw an article which pretty much undid me. Apparently a Black professor at Boston University has a problem with racism. Please click on this link. http://www.foxnews.com/us/2015/05/18/boston-university-prof-in-racist-tweet-controversy-accused-ridiculing-white/

Not only does she have a problem with prejudice against young white college men but she totally tore apart a white woman who had been raped as a child. I have two sons who are white and they are both in college. They are amazing young men and have a lot more class than Ms Grundy. They would never think of making a total fool of themselves on social media like she has.

Yet it was not her insult to white college males which got me all fired up, it was her attack on that young lady who had been molested.

This brings my Mama bear out in full force. How dare she have the audacity to attack a woman who has been molested? She is no better than a punk in a gang who has to pull out an oozy to pretend that they are tough.

I do have sympathy for people of color who think they have been discriminated against, but my God, you are not the only people on the face of the earth who have experienced that evil. I have experienced it as a child when I had to use a wheel chair. I have been bullied, I have had money stolen from me by lawyers who were beyond useless because I was a single mother with a small bit of money saved up. I have been cheated on and betrayed. I have been verbally, physically and emotionally abused.

For the record I am NOT crying and I am definitely not a victim. What I am, is strong and resilient, and when someone treats a young woman with disrespect, who has suffered molestation, I want to go all crazy on them. Because, you see, I have learned the lesson that discrimination has the ability to teach. That is to treat others, less fortunate, with respect because I know what it is like to be disrespected.

The woman who was molested has been through hell. I know, I used to counsel women in mental hospitals who had been molested as children. They stole a piece of my heart. I had never loved a population in mental health as much as loved them. They made an incredible impact on me.

Children who have been molested will never get their innocence back. Those who are discriminated against have a choice as to how they respond. They can use it as a surge of power to become better and stronger than the idiots who were prejudiced. It can become a powerful force which propels you to prove those who were ignorant and prejudiced, that they were wrong about you.

What it shouldn’t be, is a self serving narcissistic void where you think that because you are a black female you can attack another female who happens to be white, for whatever reason.

Prejudice is a street that goes both ways. There is no better example of this then the tirade that Ms. Grundy went on. For the record I do believe that Ms. Chamberlain has responded with class and intelligence. Ms Grundy, not so much. Unfortunately that just perpetuates the prejudice which Ms. Grundy is trying so hard to fight. What a shame, because I know so many black people who are a total class act.

Buddha and Muhammad

I really admire some people. There are people who believe that Buddha and Muhammad were God. Yet neither one of them were recorded as being capable of creating a miracle or a healing. If they were God would they not be able to heal the sick?

I mean, after all, if you created something and it was broken should you not be able to fix it?

Jesus had countless miracles.

The other thing that totally blows my mind is that some people say that the ashes of Buddha are still around. The remains of Mohammad have also been located.

I dare anyone on the face of the earth to say they have found the bones of Jesus. Yep, they wouldn’t be able to claim that because he died and rose again. Furthermore He is returning again soon for the second coming.

I really admire people who have so much faith that they believe in a mere men who could not heal or do miracles and who died and never rose again. Some people think it takes a lot of faith to believe in Jesus. Not near as much as it would take to believe in Buddha and Muhammad, if you ask me.

THE GOD OF KITTENS

The other day I caught sight of some adorable kittens. They were tussling in the grass when I saw them. I started thinking about how much fun it must have been for God to have created kittens.

Then I began thinking of the wonder of butterflies. The delicacy within their formation astounds me. I saw a black swallowtail last summer in my gardens and I was speechless with admiration.

Then my mind took a turn, which frequently happens in my mind and I started thinking about difficulties people have with accepting God’s love. There are many people who think that God doesn’t love them because their earthly Dad did not love them.

Some unfortunate people have been abused as children, some even sexually molested by parents. This can really mess up the whole idea of having a heavenly Father who loves you. People who abuse or molest their children are just messed up.

My Dad did not abuse or molest me but he was emotionally distant. Somehow when I looked at those little balls of fur in my friend’s backyard I realized something. I knew that a God who was emotionally distant couldn’t have had the ability to create that fluff ball. It would have been impossible.

The God who created kittens is the same God who loves you unconditionally. The God who created the tender and beautiful wings on a butterfly is the same God who wants to mend your broken heart. The God who formed a rose is seeking the fragrance of your presence.

You are the apple of His eye. I don’t know who it is that I am writing this for but I know it is meant for someone and I want you to know that your earthly father is a far cry from what your heavenly Father is.

You are loved and there is nothing you have done that can separate you from His love. He sent His only Son to die not for what you have done right but what you have done wrong. All you have to do is just open your heart and let Him in.

A PROPHET?

I was invited to a church service the other night. It was held in a hotel. The person who was speaking was touted as a prophet from God.

A good friend of mine invited me. I rushed home from work, got freshened up and went to the service.

It was an interesting, yet disturbing event to attend. After the praise and worship the pastor asked for an offering. Then he started speaking healing over people.

I was watching him speak over people and telling them what illnesses they had and then he supposedly healed them in the name of Jesus.

He asked me to come up and he spoke some things over me. None of which were exactly right. He said I had pain in my right hip. It is my left hip which hurts. My right knee hurts though so I gave him credit for that. Then he said I had had a separation 12 years ago. I tried my hardest to think of who I was dating 12 years ago and I could not for the life of me remember if I had a separation at that time or not. I know I was divorced 17 years ago but it was not 12 year ago.

He did say that I was going to get a “filet mignon” as a husband. That was so cute. I don’t even eat much beef but I know that that is the best cut of a cow. I do believe that God has someone special for me but I don’t think I have met him yet. Since I haven’t met him, I wouldn’t be able to tell if he was ground beef or a filet mignon.

Then he had another call for an offering and this time he asked my friend to give him over a thousand dollars. She couldn’t afford that. She is struggling with her financial situation. Nonetheless, she wrote out a check and gave it to him.

About halfway through the service he asked for another offering. Apparently this guy is on television and he needs a certain amount to remain on television. My thinking is if he doesn’t have that amount of money in his pocket, than maybe he doesn’t need to be on TV.

He did some more speaking over people and then he asked for a “love” offering to provide for him. I guess the other two offerings were for his ministry. That was three offerings that he asked for in one two hour meeting. He put a couple of people on the spot and demanded certain amounts. Thank God I wasn’t one of them.

I believe that God wants me to get out of debt and when that has been done, I have three children that may need help. After that is accomplished I intend to travel all over the world. (Hopefully with my Mr Filet Mignon. lol)

As I have reflected on this experience I have become sad. I am sad that my friend is so misled by pastors who would take money from her which she does not have. I am also sad that a pastor who is supposedly a prophet would feel the need to ask for money three times during a service.

I kind of doubt that he was a prophet. If he was actually a prophet he would have known exactly where my pain was and he would have had the year of my divorce correct.

As I was writing this post my sadness turned into joy. I realized that I don’t need a prophet to be healed. Nor do I need someone guessing which illness it is that needs to be healed. I have a savior who has been crucified for my sins and he is able to heal me. If I had been healed by this “prophet” I may have believed that he was necessary for the healing to occur. The only necessity I have is Jesus Christ.

I must admit though, I do like the idea of a filet mignon husband. Hoping and praying he got that right. lol


PRAYER REQUEST

Once again I am humbly asking for you to intercede for me in prayer for the benefit of my children.

My youngest son is in his first year of college and is struggling in some of his courses. He is finding Calculus 3 and English to be a challenge. He has done well in his engineering courses and I thank those of you who prayed for him in that matter. Next semester he plans on taking Calculus 4 so it is important for him to do well this semester. Sheesh, I barely passed Algebra, so for him to be able to grasp Calculus is a miracle in itself. His finals are all this week, so intercession would be much appreciated.

Also my other son is studying for his MCAT. Every time I get a chance to talk to him, it is for just a few seconds and he says again and again how stressed he is. Please pray that God calms his heart and soul. God has blessed him with an intelligent mind and there is no need for the anxiety. That is from the devil. This boy can do whatever it is that God sets before him because the Lord has given him ambition and intelligence. His MCAT is this Friday and I ask that you intercede for him to do well and for God to choose the path that he is to take for medical school.

I have something else to share with you. Remember when I said for you to give thanks to God for prayers answered when you put a new petition before him? I got a major praise for God. My daughter got all A’s this semester! This is a girl who didn’t study a lick in high school. However, this year she has been disciplined and focused in college studies. The Lord has blessed her exceedingly this past year and I can see the Holy Spirit’s work within her character. That is something to be grateful for.

So as you give thankfulness for the success my daughter has achieved, I ask that you humbly bring before him my sons’ desires to do well in college and on the MCAT.

You are all awesome and I know that you are prayer warriors. I always have peace when I share my concerns with you. May the Lord Bless and Keep you and give you favor.

Hugs! Gracie Lynne