Monday, September 26, 2016

What message are we sending...

Ephesians 4:29 NLT
"29 Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them."

Psalm 19:14 NLT
"14 May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer."

Colossians 3:23 NLT
"23 Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people."

1 Timothy 4:12 NLT
"12 ...Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity."

These several verses all have one thing in common...the way we are supposed to act, be, speak, do.  They have been on my mind a lot lately.  I get on FaceBook nearly every day.  And, every time I am on, I see posts by people I know and by some I don't know.  I don't have a problem with it in general; however, many of the posts I see by my 'Christian' friends is what gets to me.  

We all 'share' someone else's posts from time to time.  The problem I have is when a 'Christian' shares a good post, something that has meaning or an encouraging thought.  I have to wonder if they look at the origin of the post...the 'page' that it came from or the 'name' of the original poster.  There are many FaceBook pages whose name is a fowl name.  There are many individual posters that give themselves a 'nickname' as a middle name.  (ie:  John 'Curseword' Doe)  If my friend 'shares' one of John's posts, even if it's a worthwhile post, FaceBook lets the world know that 'Debi Baker shared John 'Curseword' Doe's post!  So, his obscene name shows up on my timeline...  I am a pastor.  I don't want my congregants to see that.  It sends a message that I don't want to send.  It's speaking out of both sides of my mouth.  I say one thing from the platform and another when I share the post from the poster with the obscene name!

It's easy to copy or download and save an image to your computer and then upload it to your timeline without the obscenity!  As Christians, we are in the world but not of the world.  We are supposed to stand out from the crowd.  Others are supposed to see Jesus in us!  When we post things like that we are sending a message that says being a Christian is no different from the world!  I honestly don't think they intend to send that message but that's the message being sent.

I want to challenge each and every one of you that are on any social media, not just FaceBook, please consider the message you are sending.  Not just the 'picture' message but also in the names associated with the picture!  Let's be the face of Jesus that others see.  Let's send the proper message that Jesus is Lord and when He is Lord of our life, we are different.  Don't bow to the ways of the world.

Have a blessed day!
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Wednesday, May 18, 2016

God is good and faithful! God is the giver of good gifts!

"Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him."
Psalm 127:3 NLT

One week ago today our 12th grandchild was born.  As with all our 'babies' we were so excited that our baby girl was expecting again!  Grandchildren are amazing.  I love my kids with my entire being; but those grandbabies...words cannot describe my love for them!

Anyway, Deanie (my precious baby girl) called us around 10:30 or 11:00 on Tuesday night.  She said she thought her water had broken (she was only 36 weeks into the pregnancy) but she was gushing blood.  Talk about fear jumping right into my throat!!  She said she was on the way to the hospital and I told her we would meet them there!

In the meantime she heard back from the doctor who told her to go to the nearest hospital and not to go to the hospital where she planned to go.  She called us and so we turned around and went to that hospital.  There, they hooked her up to the fetal monitor and monitored baby.  They eventually brought in the equipment to do a sonogram.  (We were at this hospital for what seemed like forever.)  She was told everything was fine but they wanted to keep her overnight for observation.

Now, I don't know what you know about pregnancy but there is NOT supposed to be any bleeding going on much less gushing of blood.  I wasn't comfortable and Deanie certainly wasn't.  Our hubbies were not happy either.  She had told them from the start that she did not intend to deliver at that hospital.  They assured her she was NOT in labor and not to worry.  

She & her hubby made the decision to leave and go ahead to the planned hospital, 20 minutes away.  When they left the first hospital she 'was not in labor' and was dilated to only a fingertip.  In the 20 minutes it took to get to the hospital of choice she was dilated to a 3 and in active labor having contractions as close as 2 minutes apart.  Not in labor...yea, right!!  The wonderful staff at the planned hospital discovered that the baby was breech and that she had had a placental abruption.  This is where the placenta begins to tear away from the uterine wall; it is very dangerous!  The doctor on call pretty much called this an emergency and felt the best course of treatment was to do an emergency c-section.

What!!  My baby and her baby...God, please intervene!  Of my 12 grandchildren this is the only c-section, only the 2nd one I haven't been able to see born, and the only breech.  I was frantic...but trying to be strong for my girl.  They prepped her quickly and then whisked her away to surgery.  My oldest daughter was there with us, I looked at her and said we didn't even get to pray with her!  So for the next 30 minutes I sat there and prayed.  I was so scared.  Jenifer was scared.  My hubby was worried, Deanie & her hubby were scared!  All I could do was pray!

"I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb.  Before you were born I set you apart ..."
Jeremiah 1:5 NLT

God formed this baby...He knew when He formed him that this is how the birth would go.  I thank God that WE didn't know beforehand!  Can you imagine if you knew that your pregnancy would end like this...what a stressful pregnancy it would be for sure!  Not only did God form this precious bundle of joy but He has set Him apart.  He is called; he is blessed!  God has a plan and a purpose for Him!!

Finally we got the call that he was here!  Everyone was doing well!  Even though baby is considered a preemie, he didn't need to be in the incubator nor did he have most of the other 'preemie' issues.  The only thing he had trouble with was keeping his temperature up enough.  Mommy just snuggled him skin to skin and kept him wrapped up!  

God is good and faithful!  God is the giver of good gifts!  Here is our precious gift!

Edward James Combs 
Born:  5/11/16
At:  6:03am 
Weight:  5lbs 14.3oz
Length:  17 1/2" long
Head circumference: 12 3/4"

This precious gift is truly a treasure!  

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PS:  My baby girl and her hubby got married on my birthday, May 11, 3 years ago...and Baby Edward was born on his mommy & daddy's anniversary AND Nana's birthday!!!  Truly a gift from God!!!