Monthly Archives: June 2012

Thought For The Day 06/30/12

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Faith Through The Storms

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Landon sleeping during the car ride home after a long and tiring day at M.U.S.C. (Medical University of South Carolina) on June 28, 2012

EEG paste makes for funky hair gel!

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There is much in the world to make us afraid.  There is much more in our faith to make us unafraid. 

Frederick W. Cropp

 http://quotegarden.com/fear.html

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 When trials come knocking, our very first impulse is not to open that door up. But I always have held, occasionally with a little nudge from friends who shall remain anonymous, (like Pastor Brian, Rev Michael and last but not least, Friar Jeff…LOL) that it is better to face the enemy, stare him down and charge ahead even with an incomplete understanding of all the “whys” and “wherefores”, than to not know what he might just be doing behind your back. I seem to totally relate to the adage, “Keep your friends close but keep your enemies closer”! And this doesn’t just apply to the enemies with a corporeal form but also applies to those unseen ones, the ones that plague us with all of those fears and doubts, that seem to lay just underneath our conscious selves! We all have them at one time or another. They are the landmines along life’s path that you know come right from Satan’s belly, with no intent other than trying to undermine the faith that rests in our hearts and in our souls!

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The tension is so thick around here you can cut it with a knife. Everyone is working on the last nerve they can manage to summon up. That is what Satan seems to delight in when medical concerns invade a household. It is what the Bruscella-Hilliard families are facing even as we speak. And yet it is not in our natures to surrender. Yes, we occasionally host the obligatory “Pity Party”, as I did yesterday. That is also part of what is the natural response of so many of us. But no more stages of grief for me! Today, I pull my big girl panties up and get back to work. I do what is in my nature to do. I work out my plan of attack. I begin gathering my resources together, including, first and foremost, my faith and my connections with all of those who serve to support and nurture that faith within me. Then secondly, I gather the resources together that are more tangible, like my community resources, and I get to work. Call to Baby Net to alert the Early Intervention team that there is a new care plan in the works…..check. Alert Dr Daniels to expect the specialist report from Charleston and to expect contact from Baby Net…..check. Alert daycare to watch for neurological symptoms and to get a report from them about Landon’s communication progress for the day…..check. Get the name of the best Occupational Therapist in Myrtle beach to join our team which includes the best Speech Therapist and the best Early Intervention Coordinator…..check. Breathe…..check!

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Even Jesus was not insulated from facing storms in his life. Remember when Jesus and the Disciples, having just finished speaking to the people, decided to cross the sea to the opposite shore to rest for the night? They were in the middle of the journey just as the storm hits! It was a terrifyingly brutal assault, not all that uncommon on the Sea of Galilee, because of its location near Mt. Hermon and the mountain’s unpredictable weather patterns! Both Matthew and Luke recall the events using nearly identical words, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!” (Matthew 8:25 and Luke 8:24). It was clear that they feared for their mortal lives. Of course, Jesus’ response was, “Why are you so afraid?”, and “Do you still have no faith?”. What they learned (and what I re-discovered) is that God does not guarantee that any of us will experience calm seas and smooth sailing as we live our lives. What He does give to us is the strength to face those trials and then He gives us the resources, both within and without, to do what we can to overcome them. Yes, I did always know what the answer was. I just needed a little nudge to remember it! Have a little Faith!

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“They were terrified and asked each other, ‘Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!’”

Mark 4:41

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Copyright © 2011-2012 “MandysPath” Ministry

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Thought For The Day 06/29/12

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Doubting Mandy

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Landon

04/21/12

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Some see a hopeless end, while others see an endless hope. 

Author Unknown  

http://www.quotegarden.com/hope.html

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Somehow it is so much easier saying the words from Mark 12:30 (KJV) “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment” , than it is actually living those words all of the time. No matter the strength of your faith in God and your conviction that the things He presents us with in life are meant for a purpose of somehow teaching us an important lesson or for enriching our lives, I, for one, sometimes find that when I am faced with those trials we, none of us, really want to face, it somehow becomes glaringly obvious that at times, I lack the strength I need to not just live those words but to believe in them too. I ask Him why He has chosen to test me so, and yet where once I heard a whisper and felt a hand, this past week I feel only the answer of silence!

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Case in point: Our family is beset with some struggles since my grandson’s last surgery. Some post surgical complications have left him with symptoms that so far, no one can explain. Suffering a myriad of developmental delays as an infant, we have worked so very hard in helping him catch up to his age appropriate milestones! But now we are finding regressive behaviors, mostly centered around his capacity to retrieve appropriate verbal responses, with confusion identifying things he knew so absolutely just a few short weeks ago, such as the names of his favorite cartoon characters and toys that he plays with all the time. And so we embark on a trip to the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston hoping that the area’s premier expert in Pediatric Neurology might just be able to provide us with some of these elusive answers. After all, does He not allow for men with brilliant minds to become our most gifted men of healing? But for a Memaw who can only see confusion on a little face as he struggles to talk to me, hoping for answers from a man of science, while important, does little to ease my aching heart. You see, I want to feel like my God has not forsaken me……….has not forsaken us!

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I know what my head tells me are the absolutes of my faith, but trying to transfer the things I know to a heart that feels like it is breaking is not easy.  Yes, like Thomas I doubt. But unlike Thomas, I will not likely be seeing Jesus in front of me extending His hand for me to see and touch his wounds. Unlike Thomas, I will need to reach deep within and pull forth all of my resolve and believe and trust in my faith alone. Am I that strong? I guess I will know soon enough! And when I do, so will you because it seems I am bound to reveal all of my heart to you as I make this journey of faith. But oh, my God, I am weak!

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5Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him for the help of His presence.   6 O my God, my soul is in despair within me; Therefore I remember You from the land of the Jordan and the peaks of  Hermon, from Mount Mizar.   7 Deep calls to deep at the sound of Your waterfalls; All Your breakers and Your waves have rolled over me.   8 The Lord will  command His loving kindness in the daytime; And His song will be with me in the night, A prayer to the God of my life.

Psalm 42: 5-8 NASB

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Copyright © 2011-2012 “MandysPath” Ministry

Thought For The Day 06/28/12

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Giving Children What They Need

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 http://www.integritycounsellingservices.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/low-self-esteem-297×300.png

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Self-respect cannot be hunted.  It cannot be purchased.  It is never for sale.  It cannot be fabricated out of public relations.  It comes to us when we are alone, in quiet moments, in quiet places, when we suddenly realize that, knowing the good, we have done it; knowing the beautiful, we have served it; knowing the truth we have spoken it. 

Whitney Griswold

http://quotegarden.com/self-respect.html

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I had heard a story a number of years ago that I remember fondly calling “Daddy’s Princess”. Now I don’t know that this was the title but I do know that the sentiments were identical to a post I read in Godvine just a few days ago. Both stories were about self-esteem and inner beauty and equipping children (especially little girls) with the tools they need to see themselves as important and worthy and deserving of respect and love. And with the incidence of bullying in our communities seemingly on the rise, making sure no child (or adult, for that matter) thinks themselves undeserving or unworthy must be a huge priority for us as a society!  Parents, schools, community groups and religious organizations must all join together in sharing a message that EVERYONE is deserving of experiencing all the happiness that is possible to feel. And if we can make just one person see themselves in a more positive light, we have taken one step forward in keeping that person from becoming a victim at the hands of another!

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To Be Enormously Gorgeous

newsletter@godvine.com

May 23rd, 2012

This is a good story both for kids and their parents. In a world that can lack love and acceptance, it’s important that we give our children what they need and deserve.

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My dad says I am enormously gorgeous. I wonder if I really am.

To be enormously gorgeous… Sarah says you need to have beautiful long, curly hair like she has.

I don’t.

To be enormously gorgeous… Justin says you must have perfectly straight white teeth like he has.

I don’t.

To be enormously gorgeous… Jessica says you can’t have any of those little brown dots on your face called freckles.

I do.

To be enormously gorgeous… Mark says you have to be the smartest kid in the seventh-grade class.

I’m not.

To be enormously gorgeous… Stephen says you have to be able to tell the funniest jokes in the school.

I don’t.

To be enormously gorgeous… Lauren says you need to live in the nicest neighborhood in town and in the prettiest house.

I don’t.

To be enormously gorgeous… Matthew says you can only wear the coolest clothes and the most popular shoes.

I don’t.

To be enormously gorgeous… Samantha says you need to come from a perfect family.

I don’t.

But every night at bedtime my dad gives me a big hug and says, “You are enormously gorgeous, and I love you.”

My dad must know something my friends don’t.

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If you ever wondered for a single moment the importance of positive parenting, then look no farther than the words you have just read. We as families control so much of the direction our young people will travel. As parents, if you reinforce the importance of education, you will likely be blessed with children who thirst for knowledge. As parents, if you reinforce the importance of including God in your life, you will likely to be blessed with children that have faith and choose a pathway for living that includes a moral compass that points to Him and His laws for making right choices. As parents, if you reinforce the importance of taking care of our world, you will likely be blessed by witnessing a generation of children equipped with the understanding that we each have the capability of making a difference in not just the lives of people but all of the gifts of nature God has given to man. As parents, if you have taught your children the definition of worth by both what you say as well as how you live,  you will likely be blessed by bearing witness to future generations that know they are worthy!

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Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

Philippians 4: 8-9 ESV

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Copyright © 2011-2012 “MandysPath” Ministry

Thought For The Day 06/27/12

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Sing A New Song!

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http://www.wallpapertime.com/wallpapers/color_of_music-1280×800.jpg

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Musick has Charms to sooth a savage Breast, To soften Rocks, or bend a knotted Oak. I’ve read, that things inanimate have mov’d, And, as with living Souls, have been inform’d, By Magick Numbers and persuasive Sound. What then am I? Am I more senseless grown Than Trees, or Flint? O force of constant Woe! ‘Tis not in Harmony to calm my Griefs. Anselmo sleeps, and is at Peace; last Night The silent Tomb receiv’d the good Old King; He and his Sorrows now are safely lodg’d Within its cold, but hospitable Bosom. Why am not I at Peace?

 William Congreve

 “The Mourning Bride”, 1697

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I don’t know about you, but I just love to sing. Now when I was younger I could carry a passably pleasing tune. Today, not so much, which is just fine because most of my singing is limited to times when I am around my family whose capacity to carry a tune rivals my own! And besides, probably 50% of my musical repertoire comes from the children’s television programming and movies geared to the under 5 age group, and since Landon is generally singing (or giving singing a good try) right along with me, in his eyes, I am a Memaw Diva! Music hath such charms, and to reinforce this point, EVERY single time some of his favorite shows come on, even if he is in another room, Landon comes bounding into the living room and starts rocking and grooving to the beat of these amazingly stimulating theme songs. And when I see the joy and happiness in his eyes, I am returned to the time when I could comfortably hold him for hours at a time in my arms and stop his tiny tears and lull him to sleep by softly singing songs to him…..which I did…..often and unashamedly!

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Think about something for a moment. Have you ever been able to feel anger or hatred or remorse or any of the dozen negative emotions that sometimes can hang around our necks like millstones, when you raise your voice up in song? Not even a negative word can be uttered when we are joyfully and whole heartedly raising our voices up as we listen to our favorite recording. Did you know that music’s charms are indeed healing? A pilot study is currently being undertaken based on an unusual phenomenon relating to Parkinson’s Disease. The study began when reports emerged that a man with severe Parkinson’s disease suddenly stopped having tremors when listening to the  Fort Wayne Philharmonic Orchestra’s concerts! Music Therapy is being used more and more in treating Psychiatric disorders and music is incorporated into Holistic Therapies, as well!

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The learned authors who penned the Books of the Bible certainly recognized the importance that music plays both in the lives of man as well as in the worship and praising of our Lord and Savior. Did you know that there are somewhere in the neighborhood of 1150 verses in the Bible that reference music in some way? Not all talk about singing per se. Some refer to the instruments used to make music such as the lyre, harp, trumpet and horn while others do, in fact, refer to hymns, songs, music, melodies and psalms that is the essence of music itself. And of course, as I am wont to do, I wonder that if those seeking to share to good news about God made so many references to just this fact, why is it that we, as a collective group, don’t spend much more of our time singing our hearts out? Perhaps if we did, don’t you think we would find a little less time to hate one another and a little more time to love our neighbor? Worried about whether you can carry a tune? Don’t be! God doesn’t care if the music we share is up to the standards of Placido Domingo. Just like Truvy Jones (Dolly Parton) said in “Steel Magnolias”, “God don’t care which church you go to as long as you show up”, I have to think he thinks the same way about our singing His praises!

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Below are some of the wonderful bible verses that talk about music and singing!

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1 Chronicles 16:8 Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people. 9 Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him, talk ye of all his wondrous works.

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1 Chronicles 16:23 Sing unto the LORD, all the earth; shew forth from day to day his salvation.

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Psalms 9:11 Sing praises to the LORD, which dwelleth in Zion: declare among the people his doings.

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Psalms 30:4 Sing unto the LORD, O ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.

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Psalms 33:2 Praise the LORD with harp: sing unto him with the psaltery and an instrument of ten strings. 3 Sing unto him a new song; play skilfully with a loud noise.

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Psalms 47:6 Sing praises to God, sing praises: sing praises unto our King, sing praises. 7 For God is the King of all the earth: sing ye praises with understanding.

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Psalms 66:1 Make a joyful noise unto God, all ye lands: 2 Sing forth the honour of his name: make his praise glorious.
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Psalms 67:4 O let the nations be glad and sing for joy: for thou shalt judge the people righteously, and govern the nations upon earth. Selah.

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Psalms 68:4 Sing unto God, sing praises to his name: extol him that rideth upon the heavens by his name JAH, and rejoice before him.

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Psalms 68:32 Sing unto God, ye kingdoms of the earth; O sing praises unto the Lord; Selah: 33 To him that rideth upon the heavens of heavens, which were of old; lo, he doth send out his voice, and that a mighty voice.

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Psalms 81:1 Sing aloud unto God our strength: make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob.

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Psalms 92:1 It is a good thing to give thanks unto the LORD, and to sing praises unto thy name, O most High: 2 To shew forth thy loving kindness in the morning, and thy faithfulness every night, 3 Upon an instrument of ten strings, and upon the psaltery; upon the harp with a solemn sound.

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Psalms 95:1 O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. 2 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.

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Psalms 96:1 O sing unto the LORD a new song: sing unto the LORD, all the earth. 2 Sing unto the LORD, bless his name; shew forth his salvation from day to day.

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Psalms 98:1 O sing unto the LORD a new song; for he hath done marvellous things: his right hand, and his holy arm, hath gotten him the victory.

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Psalms 98:4 Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise. 5 Sing unto the LORD with the harp; with the harp, and the voice of a psalm.

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Psalms 100:2 Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

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Psalms 105:1 O give thanks unto the LORD; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people. 2 Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him: talk ye of all his wondrous works.

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Psalms 135:3 Praise the LORD; for the LORD is good: sing praises unto his name; for it is pleasant.

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Psalms 147:1 Praise ye the LORD: for it is good to sing praises unto our God; for it is pleasant; and praise is comely.
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Psalms 149:1 Praise ye the LORD. Sing unto the LORD a new song, and his praise in the congregation of saints.

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Psalms 149:3 Let them praise his name in the dance: let them sing praises unto him with the timbrel and harp.

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Psalms 149:5 Let the saints be joyful in glory: let them sing aloud upon their beds.

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Isaiah 12:5 Sing unto the LORD; for he hath done excellent things: this is known in all the earth.

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Isaiah 42:10 Sing unto the LORD a new song, and his praise from the end of the earth, ye that go down to the sea, and all that is therein; the isles, and the inhabitants thereof. 11 Let the wilderness and the cities thereof lift up their voice, the villages that Kedar doth inhabit: let the inhabitants of the rock sing, let them shout from the top of the mountains.

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Jeremiah 20:13 Sing unto the LORD, praise ye the LORD: for he hath delivered the soul of the poor from the hand of evildoers.

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Zephaniah 3:14 Sing, O daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel; be glad and rejoice with all the heart, O daughter of Jerusalem.

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Zechariah 2:10 Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion: for, lo, I come, and I will dwell in the midst of thee, saith the LORD.

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Ephesians 5:18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; 19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; 20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; 21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.

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Colossians 3:16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

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James 5:13 Is any among you afflicted? let him pray. Is any merry? let him sing psalms.

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Copyright © 2011-2012 “MandysPath” Ministry

Thought For The Day 06/26/12

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Hellfire And Brimstone!

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8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

Revelation 21:8

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A recent viewing of the movie “Pollyanna” led me to think about the “Hellfire and Brimstone” style of preaching that was so very common in days of yore. Who can ever forget the sermon in that movie that caused the church chandelier crystals to quiver and make a sound somewhere between a tinkle and a rattle, as Reverend Ford shouted at the congregation from his pulpit high above the pews, “Death comes unexpectedly”! It was readily apparent that Reverend Ford thought that the only way to get his flock to understand his message was by pontificating. This was the accepted style of the day, when church services lasted hours and left bottoms and backs stiff and sore from sitting so long in one attitude!

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Today, I often think that church is merely an obligatory destination on a Sunday for many who listen half asleep as the sermon is being given, then rise from comfortably padded pews, and after sharing a quick, perfunctory handshake with the minister,  leave skid marks as they rush out the doors,  in search of other activities they would much rather be engaged in on a Sunday afternoon! Is this because so many who preach have lost touch with their flock? How many people reading this share their Sunday with a minister whose preaching technique seems to be to frighten their congregation into believing they will encounter the devil just around the next corner they come to? And while that may well be the case, is it necessary to beat the congregation over the head with this message?

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I am left to wonder and ask a very important question. Do you believe that those who seek to sow fear into God’s message have ever really experienced the grace and love of the Almighty? Now I can only speak for myself, but that is why I have tried over these last months, not to pontificate in my writings. It is my goal to try to share the Gospel (and by the way, when you translate the word gospel from its Greek roots, it translates as “good news”), and my message of faith, in a positive and enlightening way. And while there is a time and a place for a serious message from our religious leaders, never forget to temper the fire and brimstone with the cooling and refreshing waters that lead us to salvation. After all, wasn’t it the joyous news of his Father’s message to mankind that Jesus told his Disciples to impart? I am reminded, in particular, of Acts 2: 25-28:   25 David said about him: “I saw the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. 26 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest in hope, 27 because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead, you will not let your holy one see decay. 28 You have made known to me the paths of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.” And yes, this most probably is one of Pollyanna’s “Glad Texts” which she told Reverend Ford about in the movie, but it is definitely a text I can share with a joyful heart because I have experienced the grace and love of the Almighty!

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18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

1 John 4: 18 NIV

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Copyright © 2011-2012 “MandysPath” Ministry

Thought For The Day 06/25/12

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We Are The World!

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/We_Are_the_World

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I expect to pass through life but once.  If therefore, there be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow being, let me do it now, and not defer or neglect it, as I shall not pass this way again. 

William Penn

http://www.quotegarden.com/helping.html

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I do not know if it was yesterday’s post or simply thinking about so many who are suffering in the world, But I found myself waxing nostalgic and returning to a time a quarter of a century ago, when a group of musicians gathered together for one night, and created one of the most joyous and wondrous videos ever to be released, not just because of its message but also for the logistical genius that was required to make it in the first place!

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It was 1985 and the African continent in the middle of a drout like never seen before. With children and their parents dying by the thousands every day from famine, a small group of talented musicians got together to write and produce a special song to raise the world’s awareness of the plight of millions and to alleviate Third World hunger. Well it worked. Dozens of other musicians signed their names on the dotted line and before long, “We Are the World” became a part of history.

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Released on March 7th, 1985, the single became a worldwide commercial success, topping music charts and becoming the fastest-selling American pop single in history. In fact “We Are the World” received a Quadruple Platinum certification by the Recording Industry Association of America, and received 3 Grammy’s, an American Music Award and a People’s Choice Award. The list of people who recorded the live video reads like a Who’s Who of musical (and entertainment) genius, and include the following names:

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“We Are the World”

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Conductor

Quincy Jones

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Soloists (in order of appearance)

Lionel Richie

Stevie Wonder

Paul Simon

Kenny Rogers

James Ingram

Tina Turner

Billy Joel

Michael Jackson

Diana Ross

Dionne Warwick

Willie Nelson

Al Jarreau

Bruce Springsteen

Kenny Loggins

Steve Perry

Daryl Hall

Huey Lewis

Cyndi Lauper

Kim Carnes

Bob Dylan

Ray Charles

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Chorus (alphabetically)

Dan Aykroyd

Harry Belafonte

Lindsey Buckingham

Mario Cipollina

Johnny Colla

Sheila E.

Bob Geldof

Bill Gibson

Chris Hayes

Sean Hopper

Jackie Jackson

La Toya Jackson

Bob Geldof

Marlon Jackson

Randy Jackson

Tito Jackson

Waylon Jennings

Bette Midler

John Oates

Jeffrey Osborne

Anita Pointer

June Pointer

Ruth Pointer

Smokey Robinson

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“We Are The World”

You Tube Video

http://youtu.be/P2H6mpUnsLI

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I shared the video for this production on my Facebook page and the response to it was overwhelming, with many people remembering exactly where they were when they first heard the song and saw the video. And it is because of this type of reaction, that on  February 1, 2010, a remake of the song by another all-star cast of singers and entertainers was recorded. It was released as a single on February 12, 2010, and the proceeds from the record were earmarked to provide aide to the survivors of the magnitude 7.0 earthquake which struck Haiti on January 12, 2010. I also shared with Facebook this second recording, and I am sharing both with you today.

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“We Are the World 25 for Haiti”

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Conductor

Quincy Jones

Lionel Richie

Mervyn Warren

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Soloists (in order of appearance)

Justin Bieber

Nicole Scherzinger

Jennifer Hudson

Jennifer Nettles

Josh Groban

Tony Bennett

Mary J. Blige

Michael Jackson (stock footage)

Janet Jackson

Barbra Streisand

Miley Cyrus

Enrique Iglesias

Jamie Foxx

Wyclef Jean

Adam Levine

Pink

BeBe Winans

Usher

Celine Dion

Orianthi (on guitar)

Fergie

Nick Jonas

Toni Braxton

Mary Mary

Isaac Slade

Carlos Santana (on guitar)

Lil Wayne

Akon

T-Pain

LL Cool J (rap)

Will.i.am (rap)

Snoop Dogg (rap)

Nipsey Hussle (rap)

Busta Rhymes (rap)

Swizz Beatz (rap)

Kid Cudi (rap)

Mann (rap)

Kanye West (rap)

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Chorus

Patti Austin

Philip Bailey

Piero Barone

Fonzworth Bentley

Ignazio Boschetto

Bizzy Bone

Ethan Bortnick

Brandy

Jeff Bridges

Zac Brown

Kristian Bush

Natalie Cole

Harry Connick Jr.

Nikka Costa

Kid Cudi

Faith Evans

Melanie Fiona

Sean Garrett

Amy Tan

Tyrese Gibson

Gianluca Ginoble

Yngwie Goyette

Anthony Hamilton

Keri Hilson

John Legend

Julianne Hough

India.Arie

Randy Jackson

Taj Jackson

Taryll Jackson

TJ Jackson

Betty Lynn Jackson

Al Jardine

Jimmy Jean-Louis

Ralph Johnson

Joe Jonas

Kevin Jonas

Rashida Jones

Gladys Knight

Benji Madden

Joel Madden

Katharine McPhee

Jason Mraz

Mýa

Freda Payne

A. R. Rahman

Reiza Rinah Ray

RedOne

Nicole Richie

Kelly Rowland

Raphael Saadiq

Carlos Santana

Trey Songz

Musiq Soulchild

Jordin Sparks

Robin Thicke

Rob Thomas

Vince Vaughn

Mervyn Warren

Verdine White

Ann Wilson

Brian Wilson

Nancy Wilson

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“We Are The World 25 For Haiti”

You Tube Video

http://youtu.be/Glny4jSciVI

Yes indeed, “We Are the World” and we are all our brother’s keeper! And just because you aren’t famous or an entertainer or singer, doesn’t mean you can’t make a difference! If you are interesting in finding how you might be able to help in your community, just visit the following web site and type in your zip code into the search engine. Or contact your local municipal office, public school, hospital or nursing home to see if they are looking for volunteers!

http://www.volunteermatch.org/

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One last thing to remember. Some of the talented artists who were responsible for this magic happening are no longer with us. Michael Jackson, Ray Charles and Waylon Jennings are but three that come to mind….there may be others. As is God’s way, sometimes He robs the world of some of its best and most talented people for purposes known only to Him. But I would like to take a moment and ask that you say a prayer for these talented artists taken from our world far too soon, and say a prayer as well as for the families still mourning their passing! I also want to remind you of the untold thousands upon thousands of lives lost as a result of the events that prompted these efforts to begin with! All are precious in His eyes and all are deserving of our remembrances and prayers!

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Heavenly Father,

Your power brings us to birth, Your providence guides our lives, and by Your command we return to dust.

Lord, those who die still live in Your presence. In fact, faith teaches us that their lives change but do not end.

We ask for your mercy for those left behind, that they might be reassured that their departed loved ones now share your Heavenly Kingdom.

In company with Christ, who died and now lives, may all the faithful departed rejoice in Your kingdom, where pain and fear is no more and where all our tears are wiped away.

We ask that you one day unite us together again in one family, to sing Your praise forever and ever.

Amen

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In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.

Acts 20:35 ESV

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Copyright © 2011-2012 “MandysPath” Ministry

Thought For The Day 06/24/12

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It Takes A Village!

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 You need a village, if only for the pleasure of leaving it.  A village means that you are not alone, knowing that in the people, the trees, the earth, there is something that belongs to you, waiting for you when you are not there. 

Casare Pavese

http://www.quotegarden.com/home.html

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While many of us first heard the title of today’s post because it is the title of former First Lady and now Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton’s book, which was written in 1996, in fact, this is an ancient African proverb whose goal was to impart wisdom and truth. The intent was to tell everyone that no man (or woman or child, for that matter) is an island! The well-being of the one is dependent on the capacity of the whole to be supportive and nurturing. And yet, this seems to be something that is often lacking in today’s society! While we like to think we all are part of a collective that cares for and about each other, in fact, we are increasingly finding that this is seldom the case. We no more would leave our doors to our homes unlocked at night or when we are away than we would consider diving from the top of Niagara Falls to be safe thing to do. Now some of this is due to the effects modern technology, and what this has brought to our doorstep. After all, we now hear about all of the horrors that assail humans only a nanosecond after they occur. We view our leaders with a jaundiced eye, wondering what their motivation is for what they say since history seems to prove that it is seldom the welfare of the collective community!

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Now perhaps I seem to be viewing the world with a jaundiced eye by what I am writing. Perhaps I seem to have lost hope for the community, the country and the world. In fact, nothing could be farther from the truth. You see, I know that the thing that will “un-harden” the hearts of men is not something mysterious or unknown. In fact it can be summed up in two words…..LOVE and FAITH! I join the two together because each is, in many way, co-dependent upon the other, and I like to think that despite all of the horrors we see today that, just as Anne Frank said so brilliantly in her diary, “I keep my ideals, because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart.”

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It really does take a village and the individuals that live in that village. And like the saying goes, community, like charity, begins at home. But it doesn’t just happen. It takes not just seeing ourselves with a clear eye but looking clearly at the others who live in your community, as well. If you do not know how to be a friend and neighbor then you can’t possibly expect that others will treat you accordingly. So take a moment to think about just what being a friend and neighbor, indeed, a good member of society, entails. What should we do to help our village become a place where the good of the whole becomes at least as important as the good of the one?

  1. Respect the people who live near you. Not everyone works the same hours. Not everyone has young children. So think about all of these things and be conscientious about noises that might disturb your neighbors, such as vacuum cleaners, music, loud talk and barking dogs.
  2. Keep your home and yard presentable. Taking pride in the place you live shows others that you take pride in yourself and that you care.
  3. Welcome new neighbors with an introductory note or a friendly chat. Invite them over for an iced tea or offer to help them as they become acclimated to the community. Share with them things like information about recycling all their moving cartons and tell them the best way to get the newspaper or to the supermarket.
  4. Respect your neighbor’s privacy. Not everyone is open and gregarious. Many are quiet and subdued. Recognizing the differences between people paints you as a sensitive and caring person.
  5. Offer to collect mail, water plants and watch the pets while your neighbors are  away on a trip. Offer….don’t wait to be asked.
  6. Keeps the lines of communication open. Seek to share both good news as well as concerns over a cup of coffee or a light lunch.
  7. Throw a house party or open house once a year. And while you can wait for the holidays, why not make it a special event, in and of itself, by hosting that gathering during a month when there are no special holidays or celebrations! Don’t forget to include those that live alone or who are elderly and may need your help to attend!

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There is a reason that our founding fathers adopted the phrase believed to have been first coined by Aesop, “United we stand….Divided we fall”! And yet, do we not read nearly the same thing in the Bible in  Mark 3:25, “A house divided against itself cannot stand”? It seems that throughout history, wise people recognized that it would take a village to raise a child, but somehow,  years of apathy and entitlement have caused us to forget the wisdom of these words. Let’s change this today! Let the buck (and apathy) stop with us!

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 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.   32 “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you?   Even sinners love those who love them.   33 And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that.   34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full.   35 But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.   36 Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. 

Luke 6:31-36 NIV

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Copyright © 2011-2012 “MandysPath” Ministry