May 08

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT IDAHO

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We are in our new home; still surrounded by boxes, but the piles are smaller and the cupboards are becoming organized. Rather than attempt something deeply spiritual, I wanted to share a few experiences that show why I love living here.

  1. The street sign above. In winter, folks sometimes leave their cars running while they hop into the store. Motor running, means keys in the ignition. What I love about this sign is it recognizes the trust in the community that assumes the car will be safe, but also encourages a protection of the natural environment that is one of Idaho’s treasures.

  2. Speaking of treasures, Idaho is the “gem state.” You know how much I like glittery jewels. Enough said.

  3. We went to City Hall to get Mollie a doggie license. “We don’t require a license,” we were told. “Just make sure to have a tag with her name and your phone number on it so we can make sure she gets home.” Awwwww….sweet.

  4. We had our photos taken for our Idaho driver’s licenses. The DMV gal turned her computer screen around to show Jim his photo. When Jim moaned, she said, “We can keep taking them until we get one you like.” Before she took mine, she asked if I wanted to first comb my hair.

  5. We hired a gardener. I asked if he would mail us a bill and how I should pay him. His reply: “Just figure out how many times I’ve come for the month and tape a check to the back door.”

Trust is everywhere. Life is good.

♥ ♥ ♥

Because we won’t have official Internet service until the end of the month, my posting schedule here will be sketchy for a bit. Thank you for your patience and the encouragement you give me from stopping by.

Apr 10

MOVING FORWARD

 

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About ten years ago, hubby and I planned for this time—when he would retire and we would leave the hustle and bustle of busy California. We bought gorgeous river front property in Idaho and waited and planned.

Although plans often take longer than hoped, this plan is now moving forward again. Our house in California is in a short escrow and we have begun feverish packing and trying to locate a temporary residence in Idaho until more plans firm up.

Hubby and I are presently in Idaho, having left our California house filled with packed boxes and empty bedrooms. We are busy making decisions so that we can have a place to lay our heads when escrow closes this month.

I’ll be away from my home here at CarolPetersonAuthor.com until we settle in a brick and mortar home in Idaho. But I’ll be back.

Until then, keep moving forward in your lives and especially in your walk with God. Jesus loves you and so do I.

 

Apr 06

FOR FAITH: Don’t Blink

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Because Easter follows Passover which follows a lunar calendar which follows—who-knows-what, Easter moves across the calendar from year to year. Always on a Sunday but sometimes in March; sometimes in April.

I was born on Easter Sunday. When I was ten, my Grandmother told me that my birthday might never again fall on Easter. It got close a few times, but I took her at her word and never expected the delight of both chocolate eggs and a birthday cake on the same day.

Until yesterday. A funny thing happened also in my thinking yesterday. I don’t remember being born, but I sure do remember being a kid. It seemed like I had only just yesterday been dressing up in Mom’s dresses, slopping about the room in her over sized high heels, every necklace she owned draped about my small neck.

I must have blinked though. It wasn’t just yesterday. I have lived a lifetime since then.

Scripture tells us that to God a day is like a thousand years and a thousand years like a day.

Jesus was crucified, died and resurrected to save our souls over 2,000 years ago. In the eternal scheme of things, it was just yesterday. If God had blinked, He might have missed it.

Are our lives like that to God, no matter how many calendars we have gone through here on earth? More likely He treasures each day He gives us. As should we.

Thank you, Jesus for dying for me just yesterday. Thank you for the thousands of years you will allow me to live in heaven with you.

I’ll try not to blink. I want to live them all with joyful enthusiasm for you.

Apr 03

FOR FAITH: It was now about noon

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It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.

The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.”

(Luke 23:44-47)

♦♦♦

This short passage tells us so much about what we commemorate on Good Friday.

*Heaven and earth were filled with darkness at the loss of Jesus’ earthly life. Just as Scripture (Luke 19:40; Isaiah 55:12; Psalm 148:1-14) tells us that the very rocks sing out in praise, so must the heaven and earth have cried out in sorrow at Jesus’ death on the cross, filling the world with physical darkness that reflected a time of spiritual darkness.

At Jesus’ death, even the sun stopped shining.

*The curtain of the temple was torn in two. Before Jesus, a physical curtain within the holy temple walls divided the people and the place where God was present. Only one high priest was allowed to enter into that holy place to be in the presence of God and ask for mediation between God and His people. When Jesus died, that curtain was torn in two. It was destroyed because it was no longer needed. Now, Jesus was the mediation between God and His people.

*Although seconds from death, Jesus used every ounce of strength to call out in a loud voice to commit his spirit into his Father’s hands. Jesus calls out to all of us—with all of His strength—in every moment of our lives. Do we listen? Do we respond?

* The centurion—a Roman pagan—praised God. Why would the centurion praise God? He had watched the events transpire, watched the way Jesus died, recognized Jesus as a righteous man and perhaps have felt sorrow or remorse for his part in crucifying a righteous man.

But perhaps more was going on. Perhaps the centurion  right then, at the foot of the cross, recognized that Jesus had died to save him also. Could that be the reason why the centurion praised God?

As we contemplate what happened on that Friday centuries ago, do not be discouraged or sad. We know what happened just three days later. We know what it means for humanity and for us personally. As the centurion did back then, praise God! Jesus was a righteous man (God in human form) who died so that we might live.

Mar 23

FOR FAITH: Matthew 11:28

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Right this minute I’m probably lying on a lounge chair on the beach in Hawaii. It’s one way I’m living Matthew 11:28.

Jesus created this glorious world and allows us to enjoy it. One way to enjoy it is leaving behind the everyday and relishing time alone with that special person—praising God all the while.

But even when we can’t get away to a beach in the tropics, this verse reminds us that we can always take time away from the burden and weariness of every day and spend time with Jesus.

Mar 20

FOR FAITH: Thank God for Springtime

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Here in Northern California, we’ve had spring pretty much since January. That’s good in that it’s been glorious to watch the trees bloom and fill the world with beauty. That’s bad in that we generally get a few major rainstorms in February. This year we’ve needed a good drenching that never came.

But today it is officially spring—not only here in Northern California but in the rest of the northern hemisphere as well. It’s a time when the world on this side of the equator renews itself. It’s a time when that physical renewal has a subtle power to encourage us to renew our spirits as well.

So here’s to springtime and the renewal it brings to us all. Thank you, Jesus for the beauty and variety you created when you created this world!

 

WHAT ABOUT YOU? What’s your favorite part of springtime?

 

Mar 16

FOR FAITH; FOR WRITERS: Second Step

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Last month (here) I wrote about my one word in faith for 2015—Nike. That one word reminds me to “just do it.” I wrote, that part of “just doing it” is taking that first step out. 

After that first step, then what happens? It’s then time to evaluate.

  • Did I survive?

  • Did I make forward movement?

  • Is forward the actual direction I should be going?

  • Or is going left or right where I should head?

  • Or—could it actually be that God wants me right here where I am for a bit longer?

Just as we step out in obedience and faith, we have to keep stepping in the direction God intends. Or stay put and wait for His leading.

When setting those goals each year, many of us focus on taking that first step forward. It’s a little scary. But more often it’s exciting, looking toward achieving our goals.

But ultimately we need to take a look at where we are. Did we lose our way? Is the goal still the one we desire to reach? Is it closer or has our stepping out taken us away from where we want to be?

Each quarter I reevaluate those lofty goals I set in January. Am I making progress? What is hindering me? What have I done that I should continue to do? What haven’t I done? Or what should I stop doing?

And—equally valid—does that goal still have meaning? Or have situations changed? Or has something more important or more urgent come into my life that I need to focus on?

As I look over my own writing goals, I see that I’m making forward progress on some. Others I haven’t even begun to address and I still need to do so. And others have popped up calling out for attention.

It’s all good. And all of them require that I just do it—whatever “it” might have become.

WHAT ABOUT YOU? Are there things you wanted to accomplish in 2015? Are you making progress toward them? Have other things popped up, calling for your attention?

Mar 09

OZ AND I: Uncertainties

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It began last October.

Our hopeful relocation to Idaho. First our daughter and son-in-law bought their own home and moved out of this one. Then our son moved out and trying to sell this house began in earnest.

Clean the house. Wait. Hope the folks love the house. Wait for an offer.

Repeat.

Offers have come. Offers have been promised. But ultimately we’re still here. And still waiting.

We began the process with excitement. “What are you planning to do when the house sells?” people would ask.

“Embrace the chaos,” we would lightheartedly respond.

We thought things would move quickly. We thought there would be delightful chaos.

But as we lean into the sixth month of the process, the adventure has stalled. The delightful chaos hasn’t occurred. The resulting stress isn’t based on too much busyness. It’s based on too much stagnation.

This morning, though Oswald Chambers encouraged me, saying, “showing no concern for the uncertainties that lie ahead” is the secret of walking with Jesus.

I haven’t been worried. I haven’t been afraid. I haven’t not trusted Jesus with the future plans He has for us.

But I have focused on the uncertainties as if they were a dark hole of emptiness, rather than a future chock full of good things that Jesus will illuminate in His timing.

Thank you Jesus for your plan and your timing, whatever it is. Thank you Oz for the reminder that Jesus is walking beside me.

 

WHAT ABOUT YOU? What uncertainties do you have in your life that you need to stop focusing on?

♦♦♦

This post is based on the devotional for March 9 from Oswald Chambers’ My Utmost for His Highest.

 

Mar 06

PRAYING NAMES: Penelope, Jacob

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I love the meaning of names. I also love praying that people will live the meaning of their own name. Here are two more names, their meanings and prayers that they would live that meaning.

If you would like me to create a prayer for someone you love, please leave me a comment below. If you like this idea as much as I do, head over to HonorBoundBooks.com. There you can look into purchasing a prayer plaque with the name, meaning and a prayer for someone you love.

 

PENELOPE (Penny): dream weaver

Heavenly Father, we pray that Penelope will live the meaning of her name. We pray that she will be an encourager and supporter to others in the pursuit of their dreams. We pray also that her own dreams will be the dreams of your heart in all things, understanding that you can weave together all things for good. Amen.

 

JACOB (Jake): he who supplants; he takes the place of

Heavenly Father, we pray that Jacob will live the meaning of his name. We pray that he will live a life in which he actively and consciously supplants your will for his own, understanding and believing in confidence that your will is perfect. Amen.

 

Mar 02

Apologizing for tests

John 6 35 CPTo my Facebook and Linked-in friends, I apologize for flooding social media. I’m struggling (again) with technology and need to keep testing potential fixes.

 

Thanks for your patience and grace as I fumble my way through.

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