Thursday, March 28, 2013

Lattes & Ribs, a lesson in Grace

Yesterday I got some good news from the cardiologist.  He said I could stop taking 2 of the 5 medicines
I have been on for a year.  He said my cholesterol was GREAT!  I am praising God for bringing me through these last few months.

You see in February I got a horrible flareup of my ulcerative colitis.  I couldn't keep any nutrients in me and I lost close to 10 pounds.  I had to be placed on high doses of steroids to get the inflammation somewhat under control.  This prompted me to want to be more proactive in my health care.  I started seeing a wonderful naturopathic doctor who tried to get my body on a healthier path.  We decided that I  needed to eat healthy, take supplements and try to get my stamina back.  It wasn't easy.

Just this past week, I began feeling a little better.  I won't go into the details, but I could see some positive results from the radical diet changes and supplements.

So entering the cardiologists' office I was hoping for good results.  Praise God I got them!  After my visit, we were all hungry so we looked for a healthy place to eat.  We decided on Down to Earth a vegetarian market and deli.  After lunch Brooke wanted a latte so I ventured into Starbucks for her.  The smells assaulted my senses-----aaaah the aroma of hot coffees and teas enveloped me as I came in from the rain and cold.  I told myself, "what's one chai latte" - so I bought one for myself.  It tasted so good.  By the time we reached Haleiwa, I had thoroughly enjoyed that latte.  But then the rumblings in my tummy and the cramping in my belly told me perhaps that latte wasn't a good choice! I made it home vowing never to have that drink again!  What was I thinking?

Around dinner time, my hunger pains began.  The tv was on the food channel and they were featuring all these fantastic places to go to get the best barbeque ribs.  Again, I was being seduced and sucked in to some place I shouldn't be.  What did I do?  Did I turn off the tv and make something heart healthy for dinner?  No.  I talked Tex into going to Haleiwa and get ribs for dinner.  I attacked those ribs - they looked and smelled great!!!  After finishing just one rib,  I knew I had made a bad choice.  Did I stop?  Nope.  Did I remember that low cholesterol count? Did I remember how this very day I wasn't going to be taking 2 medications?  NO - in fact I ate 3 more ribs.  As I placed the last bone on my plate, I began to feel ill.  What a dummy.  Didn't I learn from the latte?

This morning I am on the phone with my sister who lives on the mainland.  She is telling me about the bad choices one of her sons is making.  There is a part of me who wants to grab my nephew and give him a good shaking and tell him "What were you thinking".  When God speaks to me and says "Isn't that just like all of my people.  You take one step forward and two steps back.  Remember the latte & ribs? You knew better but you decided to choose poorly. Have grace. Remember how easy you succumbed to what was placed before you".

As we go into Easter let us remember to choose Christ in all areas of our lives. Remember to encourage and love on everyone. Remember from where Christ has delivered you. Pour out grace in abundance.
I know I will remember how God used "lattes and ribs" to teach me grace.

Friday, March 1, 2013


I just got through doing a great bible study by Kay Arthur called "Lord Teach Me To Pray".  The wonderful women who attended this study were so eager to learn more about our Lord and it so inspired me to press on and continue to teach and encourage women to stay in the Word.

In this study, Kay talked about temptations and how we are surrounded by more and more temptations that capture our hearts and send us in the wrong direction.  We must stay diligent and remain in the Word of the Lord to be able to discern when we are being tempted and to guard against giving our hearts to any one but God.  It got me to thinking about temptations.  Besides the obvious like drugs, alcohol, pornography, etc, there are more areas that creep into our lives and rob us of that abundant life that is available through Jesus Christ.

Do you ever become fearful, worry, doubt, fret, become filled with anger or bitterness?  How about apathy, complacency, busyness?  I look at these as temptations that can send us down the wrong path and occupy our time away from Jesus.

Do I want a life filled with being in the will of God, or do I want a life feeling as if there is more?  I learned that studying the Word of God will remind me when I am stepping into an area of temptation.  God's Word will remind me to "flee" from it.  His Word will remind me that there is always a way out of the temptation.  The scriptures will give me the power to go in another direction.  His Word will give me hope and peace.

Many months ago God showed me through His Word that one of my goals here on earth was to encourage other like minded women to study His Word indepth.  HE said "do not squander your days" and I realized He was telling me that He wanted me to join Him in encouraging women (and men) to realize the importance of studying the holy scriptures.  So here I am, telling you, whoever reads this, your time is now.  If you are reading this, it is because God has chosen you to step it up, be bold, change the direction you are going in and listen for Him.  He is knocking - will you answer the door?