Preparing for Eternity

May 11, 2022

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.” Matthew 6:19 NIV

Over the last few years, I have reminisced about my life and all the various choices I have made. Some choices were good, some were bad, some were generous, and some were quite selfish. My choices that dealt with relationships were of the most concern. I was a people pleaser, and I think it was because I was the oldest of my siblings, and I was always trying to be the best sister, daughter, and friend I could be. It was not often that I thought about what was best for me.

Now, at this stage of my life, I always talk to God before making a decision or choice. HE is the one constant in my life and never changes! I can trust and depend on HIM. HE will not lead me astray, and, in fact, HE prevents me from making many mistakes. I am thankful for all the blessings, memories, and people HE has provided for influencing my journey! I am thankful for the opportunities throughout my life to witness and play a small role in other peoples lives. God is such an awesome Father.

Please pray for me as I am praying for you! The more time we spend in prayer provides a closer relationship to Our Heavenly Father!

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Return to Our Heavenly Father

““Even now,” declares the Lord, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.””
‭‭Joel‬ ‭2:12‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake their ways and the unrighteous their thoughts. Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them, and to our God, for he will freely pardon.”
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭55:6-7‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”
‭‭Revelation‬ ‭3:20‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.”
‭‭John‬ ‭14:21‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Many times, we have an idea of what our future will be like. We make plans, and we start out with the intention of following those plans to a fulfilling conclusion. However, life happens, things get in the way, or circumstances prevent our success. I have witnessed so much heartache, brokenness, and misfortunes caused by failure to achieve goals we have set for ourselves. I believe the most disturbing situation is when I am not in total union with God’s Will for my life. Reading scriptures, praying, and seeking God’s Will is important to my relationship with my Heavenly Father.

Our world is filled with people who are lost, lonely, hurting, and searching for something. The truth is that everything for which we are searching can be found with God’s guidance. Throughout the Bible, God continues to tell us who HE is and what HE wants us to do. Why do we struggle against doing what HE wants us to do? We are stubborn! I wish we had a spiritual button which was a quick way to return to where we feel safe and return home to God. We can come back to a safe place in the arms of our Creator and welcomed into His divine presence.

When I study God’s Word, I realize that unless I turn everything over to HIM, I will remain in a constant struggle with the fear of failure to be in HIS Will. I believe God wants His people to be happy, but I think we don’t always heed the signs that we are heading in the wrong direction. The news depresses me so much, and I find myself not even wanting to know what is happening. However, I believe each of us can make a difference in the world around us. Praying is necessary if we want to alleviate some of the pain and heartbreak. Returning to Our Heavenly Father’s guidance and care is the ONLY thing we need to do.

Please pray for me as I am praying for you!

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Jesus Knows Me, This I Love

I am doing a study of the Bible In A Year for the second time— back to back — because I feel the need to be more knowledgeable about God’s Word. The first time I completed reading the Bible I was a young teenager, and truthfully, I was not able to understand everything I read. Even as I grew older, I still did not understand much of what I read. I began praying before I read and asked God to open my mind and heart to receive and understand HIS Words!

“Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭119:105‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

“Open my eyes, that I may see Wondrous things from Your law.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭119:18‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

“For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭15:4‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

Our Heavenly Father Loves us and He wants us to do His Will. He gave us specific instructions and information to help us in our journey through life. If we want to join HIM for eternity, we must always put GOD first and dedicate our lives to doing HIS Will. When I am confronted with decisions, I always ask myself, “What would Jesus do?” Just like the prophets and other followers, I must always be about my Heavenly Father’s business. The most important and precious blessing is that God has given me my orders, and all I have to do is follow HIS Guidance!

Everything I need, every question I have, all my answers can be found in HIS Precious and Holy Word! The more I read and study, the closer I feel to my Savior. The closer I get to Jesus, the more I. Love 💕 HIM. The more I LOVE Jesus, the more I know Jesus Loves me! The more Jesus Loves ME, the closer I feel to My Heavenly Father and my Savior—Jesus Christ!

Please pray for me and all God’s children, as I, too, am praying for you and all God’s people!

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Our Heavenly Father’s Grace

Posted by Hester Guest

As it is written:

“A hot-tempered person stirs up conflict, but the one who is patient calms a quarrel.” Proverbs‬ ‭15:18‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers over all wrongs.” Proverbs‬ ‭10:12‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.” Ecclesiastes‬ ‭7:9‬ ‭NIV‬‬

What is Grace? Grace is when God gives you what you need, not what you deserve. Grace is when God says, “I am going to take your problem and make it my problem.” Grace is God’s Riches given to us at Christ’s Expense. Grace is what we should be offering to others instead of criticism and blame for everything that occurs in our society!

It amazes me how many people have nothing better to do than to criticize everything that is written, said, or done! What does it even mean to have a personal opinion without someone jumping down your throat and trying to persuade you that their opinion is better or the only right opinion? That is unheard of today. It frightens me to think what we are modeling and teaching our youth today. They are learning that if you say something long enough and loudly enough it will be true! It does not even matter whether it is really true at all. Respect for educators, law enforcement, and even for family is almost a lost practice! Respect for a person’s own identity and rights is being replaced with the idea that, “I am owed!” “I don’t have to do anything to earn anything because the fact that I AM means anything I want is mine!”

We make every problem in our society about politics. The sad thing is when all those politicians are long gone, our world will be left with lots of broken relationships, hurt feelings, and memories of protesting that brought anger and ruin to our society and influenced our children in many ways we really did not expect. All it teaches them is to scream loudly and get what you want. What has happened to honor, respect, and innocence? If enough people proclaim loudly enough for long enough, you are guilty! It does not matter what the evidence points to or how innocent you are.

We are in dire need of change! Education doesn’t necessarily make us intelligent! How we use our education determines how intelligent our society is. Each of us needs to determine if we want to be a part of the problem or a part of the solution. Personally, I want to be part of the solution. Most of the time, I try to keep my opinions to myself, and I try to listen to all sides of situations! Sometimes, I suffer from “foot in mouth disease” and speak when I need to just listen. The thought I try to keep in mind is will what I have to say really make a difference, is it necessary, and most of all, “What Would Jesus Do?”

If we follow God’s Plan and Jesus’s Example, we can make a difference in our homes, communities, schools, society, and even our government!

Please pray for me, as I am praying for you.

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Jesus IS Alive

However, if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name. 1 Peter 4:16 NIV

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”
‭‭John‬ ‭1:14‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

Throughout the day and night, I feel the Presence of My Heavenly Father and His Precious Son, Jesus. Life is hard. All the craziness happening now causes suffering, heartbreak, confusion, frustration and a feeling of being broken. If I did not have a relationship with God/Jesus, I cannot imagine being able to survive. I have spent most of my time during this Holy Week studying the Book of John and thinking about what Jesus must have been experiencing. HE knew His time on Earth was almost over, and HE continued to lead the people to live a better life. HE knew HE was going to be betrayed, but HE continued to treat others with love and kindness and wanted everyone to have eternal life with God.

The more I read and learn from the Bible, the closer I feel to God. It has been so comforting to know that Our Heavenly Father is the same today, yesterday, and tomorrow! He loved us unconditionally and so much that He sent His Only Begotten Son to hang on a cross and shed His Precious Blood for our sins. The Only Perfect Man Who committed NO SINS was beaten, pierced with a sword, and nailed to an old rugged cross which he had to carry. HE BLED and DIED for You and for Me. HE arose from the dead, revealed Himself to His Disciples and followers, and Ascended to Heaven to sit at the right hand of His Father. HE IS ALIVE, and He Will Return!

34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. (‭‭John‬ ‭13‬‬:‭34‬ NIV)

Please pray for me, as I am praying for you!

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Judging Others

“Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” Matthew‬ ‭7:1-2‬ ‭KJV‬‬

Remembering those who have been on my journey through life gives me happiness, sadness, joy, and blessings which cannot be counted. I am thankful for the wisdom, love, care, and blessings shared by them. From my early years to the present, I have valued the interactions and sharing of knowledge and experiences. Every person has left a little bit of themselves with me, whether it is a positive or negative is up to me. God is the only one WHO can judge the end result. I cannot judge others, but I can lean on HIS Promises and on my Heavenly Father.

John‬ ‭13:34-35‬ ‭KJV‬‬ declares, “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”

Let Love lead your heart, guide your heart, and soften your heart. The results will amaze and bless with an indescribable peace and understanding. If I continue on the journey of forgiveness and loving others, it will become a habit of seeing and caring about others with the eyes and heart of Jesus!

One thing I ask from the LORD, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple. Psalms 27:4 NIV

Please pray for me as I am praying for you!

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April 1, 2014

Well, April Fool’s Day is here again. I have had some issues with this day for the last eight years. Through the years, many tricks were played on me. Some were funny, some were terrifying, some were mean, some were played on me by my students and friends. However, April 1, 2014 was the only one that broke my heart and changed my life.

Clyde left his earthly home, and joined Our Heavenly Father for eternity. It is truly a bittersweet memory. I am truly thankful that my sweet and precious knight in shiny armor doesn’t have to suffer any more pain, but I miss him more than words can say! The doctors called it “a widow maker”. That phrase does not adequately describe the situation it creates! I am not just a widow; I am a wife whose husband waits on the other side.

I can remember many times when he waited for me: When he retired, he waited patiently for me while I worked late most days. He never complained, and he often did something that would warm my heart! I need to write a book about all my memories of him. I treasure those memories, and they continue to lift me up and keep me going!

Thank YOU, Heavenly Father, for allowing Clyde and me to share our hearts and lives for over 51 wonderful years! Thank You for the children, grandchildren, family, friends, and blessings you showered on us! Especially, Thank YOU for loving and watching over us! Until we meet again for eternity, I will imagine you are waiting with a smile and open arms! I sure do miss your hugs!

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Our Heavenly Father

“The Lord is far from the wicked, but he hears the prayer of the righteous.”
‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭15:29‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.”
‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭6:18‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” He said to them, “When you pray, say: “ ‘Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread. Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us. And lead us not into temptation. ’ ””
‭‭Luke‬ ‭11:1-4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

I have often pondered how Our Heavenly Father could continue to LOVE and CARE for us even after we make so many mistakes and disappoint HIM. As an educator, I always took my mission seriously. I wanted everyone GOD put in my path to know HIM and HIS Love and Grace. Of course, with the rules and regulations that surround those in the roles of educators, some things had to be visual and not spoken. However, I have always believed I could walk the walk even if I could not talk the talk.

God made me a person who loves and cares for others. Even though I grew up in the years of segregation, I never saw the color of a person’s skin. That is the absolute truth and nothing but the truth! My heart hurts when I see anyone being mistreated. I have always tried to treat others like I wanted to be treated. My constant prayer is that I have never caused anyone to experience a feeling of not being “good enough.”

In The Lord’s Prayer, HIS Words say it perfectly:

“And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth. Give us day by day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.”
‭‭Luke‬ ‭11:2-4‬ ‭KJV‬‬

We should each pray this prayer and take it seriously! Honor and obey God’s Will; Look to God for all our needs; Forgive others and ourselves; and Stay away from temptations and evil. Our Heavenly Father is always Present!

Please pray for me as I am praying for each of you.

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Being Critical of Others May Result in Responses Which are Surprising

34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. (‭‭Matthew‬ ‭6‬‬:‭34‬ NIV)

Have you ever been the victim of criticism you felt was unjustified? I believe we have all found ourselves in this situation at some point. I know I have. We say something to someone and it is not taken as we intended. As an educator, I always tried to be careful of the words that exited my mouth because I never wanted to disappoint or harm those whom God placed in my path. I am so tender hearted, I will cry easily.

As God continuously told us not to worry and to trust HIM, I truly believe HIM. Why would HE waste HIS precious time telling us if HE did not want us to blindly accept HIS WORDS and Believe HIM?

When I hear criticism, I stop and think, “Okay, what is true?” Most often, the criticism has been given without any prompting from the person to whom it is given. Also, the result is a response that certainly is unexpected. One example is a lack of participation in a program or project or someone being offended. The most important thing I consider is does the criticism have the ability to change anything for God’s Kingdom. If it doesn’t, maybe it should be left unsaid.

I wonder how often we lose people in our relationships because of careless criticism that hurts or harms an individual. We all belong to each other, and our concern needs to be on each of us to have faith and trust our Heavenly Father to judge us because HE IS JUST! He sees and knows everything.

Please pray for me as I am praying for you!

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A Little More Like Jesus

12 Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him. (‭‭James‬ ‭1‬‬:‭12‬ NIV)

The deeper I get in God’s Word, the more I fall in love with my Heavenly Father. The very first man I loved was my earthly daddy. He was such a kind, loving, and gentle man. In his eyes, I could do no wrong. He was always in my corner. I never wanted to disappoint him.

At a very young child, I attended church with my grandmother, daddy’s mother. She introduced me to my Heavenly Father. Let me tell you the truth about HIM. He is strict! He gave me HIS Word and HE has always been with me. I never wanted to disappoint HIM, and I tried, throughout my life to make HIM proud of me! I made many mistakes and definitely was not a perfect daughter, but HE Loved me anyway. I would fall, and HE would be there to help me back on my journey through life. God never gave up on me. The MOST precious thing is HE IS BIG, and HE LOVES Everyone the same as HE Loves ME.

As I have matured, and I learned about JESUS, I began to realize JUST how much God’s Love and Grace meant. I cannot imagine my life without Jesus! Jesus was/is Perfect! He never sinned! However, God’s Will was for his ONLY SON to die on that old rugged cross to redeem me/us from my/our sins and give me/us eternity with GOD and JESUS. Please forgive me because I am not yelling at you, but I cannot emphasize how important this reality is. It is Life with God and Jesus versus death without Their Love. I have, also, learned how vital it is for us to share the Good News with everyone, especially our precious children!

The more I lean on and cling to God’s Promises, the more I realize just how much HE Loves HIS children! I can understand a little better how sad HE IS when I fail HIM. I previously thought some of the things that GOD allowed or caused were rather harsh, but I believe He was justified in His decisions! HE has the whole world in his hands.

Please pray for me, as I am praying for you! Just remember, there is nothing like our Heavenly Father’s Love 💕

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