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An Offering

Here I am Lord

Messy

Oh, so messy

Here I stand Lord

      Fearful

Unwilling to take a step lest I fail

Miserably

Here You meet me, Lord

Bathing me

In Your Spirit; in Your Peace

Assuring me

That I matter to you

Here I cry to You Lord

“Take me as I am!

Erase my sin and wash me again!”

And You answer

“I do, I will and I have.”

Here I start again, Lord

Refreshed and renewed

Ready to do Your will

Ready to obey Your voice

Still messy

But Yours

 

Be Blessed

Barb

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What I Saw Today

I brought my grandson to school today; he’s in his second week of half-day kindergarden. We stood in the air lock waiting to go into his classroom, surrounded by kids laughing and gabbing. We were next to a bench piled with boxes.

A mom came through the doors carrying another box like the ones on the bench. She dropped it on top of the pile and pulled her son next to her. He apparently wasn’t behaving as she expected, which she told him with her face centimeters from his. She proceeded to sit him down hard on the floor and commanded him not to move. She went in search of another adult about the boxes. He turned from the crowd, hiding his tears from the rest if the students.

My heart hurt. He couldn’t have been over 8 years old. When the other kids went to ask him about his backpack (very cool Lightning McQueen version) he had tears tracked down his face. I wanted to cry.

I’ve been that harried young mom. Overburdened, trying my hardest and nothing seems to be going correctly. I’ve lashed out at my kids. I wanted to throttle her, but I also heard in my Spirit to pray for her. And him. And my own kids.

I don’t want to forget this. I grieve the times I did not speak to my kids in love; I confessed, yet again, how I’ve failed in the past. Jesus is merciful. I pray for his mercy and grace to penetrate the heart of that young mom and her boy.  And give me courage, Lord, to offer a prayer in person. For now, You know who they are. Ease their hearts this day.

Take the time to reach out today; bless someone.

Dream big and Soar high!

Blessings,

Barb

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Walking Over Rocks

I am so very blessed to live in the most beautiful area. The foothills of the Rocky Mountains. All around me is majestic beauty as well as many businesses that begin with “Front Range,” “Foothills,” or some form of the actual elevation.

We live on a school campus, and the campus includes a track. Last year, I was up to almost 2 miles per day, then the bad weather hit. So, I’m working my way back up.

The track is rough. Lots of rocks, sticks and pebbles. I should wear closed shoes, but today I went for what was closest to the door.  I set off on my trek of 4 circuits at a good pace. This is my time to soak in the views and praise the Lord. I usually have wonderful prayer time. This morning was a little different.

Several times I needed to stop and shake tiny (and dang sharp!) stones from my shoes. That brought my thoughts to the last walk Jesus took through Jerusalem. Most likely barefoot; certainly bloodied.

Did You feel the sharp stones cutting into Your feet? You couldn’t stop to clear them off. You probably had nothing on.

When You fell, did those stones and pebbles imbed into Your palms? Cut open Your elbows a d knees? No one cleaned those wounds

Abject suffering. For my redemption.

He chose that final walk for me.

Amazing love. Unmerited favor.

He chose that walk for you, too. Have you spoken to Him today? This week? Ever? If not, why not? He’s there. He will listen. He walked over stones, and more, for you.

Be blessed. Dream big.

Till next time, Barb

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Book Review: Saving Detroit by Michelle Bolanger

I love to read. I read a lot. Most genres. Rarely will a book, after that initial book coma, leave me haunted. That is what Saving Detroit did. I could not shake the plights of the  characters.

Saving Detroit, Michelle BolangerMeet Luke Kelso, young up-and-coming crew chief for his father’s successful race team. He has everything the world could offer. A chance encounter and a decision to return to a party best left Inge Luke into a six month living hell as the pet of a sex trafficker. Once he is rescued, Luke wrestles with emotions running the gamut of shame to vengeance. He’s rocked by revelations of his beloved father’s past that further challenge his weakened faith. An encounter with Goldie at the safe house propels him to confront God with his anger and betrayal.

I am touched by how horrified Luke was; how evil the Enforcers are. How Luke struggles, really wrestles with God. The choices of his father that started the path. I know all of us have that “Why?” moment. The author beautifully portrays that, even in the most horrendous  circumstances, God is there, He had not left us and will carry us through.

If you are looking for a book that will open your eyes and heart to an enormous problem in the world today. Saving Detroit is it. It happens to boys and girls alike. The author, Michelle Bolanger, brings this horrific situation to light without being graphic. While realistic, this book can absolutely be classified as a clean read. It is gritty, heart-wrenching and will leave you contemplating it long after you close the book.

She has also included, in the back matter, links to organizations that are helping victims reclaim their lives. Proceeds from the sale of Saving Detroit are going to one of them. Bravo, Michelle.

You can find Saving Detroit on Amazon (sorry, my links are wonky) here: https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B06XYPF82H

Michelle Bolanger’s website: https://www.michellebolanger.com

You can follow Michelle on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

 

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Angels Unaware Freebie Today!

I have always been fascinated and curious about supernatural things; at times, I confess, this didn’t always point me in the right directions.  Angels have always held a special intrigue for me, especially as I delved into the Bible. One of my all time favorite movies is It’s A Wonderful Life, where clumsy angel Clarence earns his wings by helping George Bailey see that his life matters. And who doesn’t shed some tears when Ebenezer Scrooge changes his life when visited by 3 “spirits” one Christmas long ago.

A quick Google search brings up over 300 mentions of angels in the Bible. Reading about them and the appearances they made to our ancestors, you realize they are not chubby little creatures with rosy cheeks and curly blonde hair. They are awesome, fearsome beings created by God Himself before the fall of man. They serve Him, worship Him and when warranted, visit us with messages. The people they appear to aren’t very thrilled. They are usually struck by fear and trembling and bow to the ground.

They also have their counterparts. When Lucifer rebelled, he swept 1/3 of the angels from heaven with him. Now, I am no theologian, so I cannot say for certain what their role is now. They may be demon spirits, they may not. If you have questions on that, ask your pastor or a trusted Biblical scholar. But, there is certainly a fight of good vs evil in this world.

One of the first inspirational fiction novels I read was This Present Darkness, by Frank Peretti. It captured my imaginings, and explained what I felt was a real thing; the spiritual battle that rages around us.

Years later, my own story formed, and Angels Unaware was born. And, today only, March 21st, it’s free on Kindle! I hope you enjoy it!

Angels UnawareIn this world, we are oblivious to the unseen battle raging around us.

Millions of people world-wide listen to her music. She lives a lifestyle many can only dream of. Superstar entertainer Moriah has achieved the very goal she set out to pursue: human adulation. Her bold and brash style masks the pain carried deep in her heart. Pain she refuses to deal with; pain that caused her to turn from the God of her youth.

When news of her mother’s death hits hard, she rejects the consolation which is available through her estranged family, which includes her husband. She flees from reality through drugs and drink and almost loses her very life. Clarion, a messenger from God, gives her the opportunity to understand her past and reclaim her future. Moriah is given a front row seat to the invisible war for her very soul.

Visit me on social media or right here on the blog and let me know how you like it!

Dream Big, Soar HIGH!

In Jesus,

Barb aka D.H. Barbara

 

 

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Book Review: Web of Shadows, Susan Sleeman

webofshadows_225I love the rich, vibrant characters that Susan develops. They are good and strong, be they on the right or wrong side of the law. In fact, I cringed when the villain in this book was named! He’s as creepy as ever, with a grudge against FBI Agent Nina Brandt, who sent him to prison. When he inadvertantly runs into her, his crazed plot for revenge begins. It unfortunately involves Nina’s ex-love, Navy SEAL Quinn Stone and his family. Nina must get involved and save not only Quinn’s younger brother, but her own career.

The suspense begins on the very first page, and doesn’t stop until the end. It’s certainly a book that you do not want to put down. The action is realistic; the bad guy is BAD and the good guys triumph. As with life, there is tragedy along the way, but Susan handles those incidents well. There is no gore, no violence-for-shock-value scenes in her book. It’s a good, stirring, clean read that takes you on a great ride through the risks of national security and just how vulnerable it may be.

Web of Shadows is Susan’s second book in her Agents Under Fire series. Susan’s books are available on Amazon and elsewhere. You can connect with her through social media:

Through her own website, SusanSleeman.com, and her website for suspense fans, The Suspense Zone, where she feautures other authors.

Susan’s Facebook page and Twitter

 

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Mother’s Day, 2015; What I’ve Been Longing To Say For Years

It’s the second Sunday in May and here in Colorado you can almost bank on it being one of two things. Super hot or snowy. Today it’s snowy. It reminds me of May, 2008, when we moved to this wonderful, bi-polarized weather state. It did clear up to spend my first Mother’s Day here on a beautiful day.

Yes, this is a post about remembering, but it may not be the type of Mother’s Day post you’re expecting. Even if that’s the case, please read through. I’d like to tell you about some women, for whom this day is not joyful. I tell you about them, not to diminish your joy in the day, but to see that there is a need for prayer over them. For, if you are a believer on our Lord Jesus as your Savior and King, you are called to pray for the hurting.

Some women today will not feel happy, will not have family rallying around to honor them, who will have pain so deep they can hardly stand up. You have sisters in this world, yea, right under your very nose, who have hurting hearts today. It’s time to open your eyes and see them.

There are Prodigal Moms, ones who have children but they may not hear from them. They may not know where their children are or if they are even still breathing on this earth. For some, there may be joy as a Prodigal returns, but for many, there will not be.

There are the Heart Moms, those who haven’t carried a child, but long to. They so want to have every emotion of joy and pain that comes in this little chore called Motherhood. They understand the hard times come with the good, and their minds are boggled and their hearts saddened when we complain about dirty diapers and late night phone calls.

There are the moms who really don’t treasure their children as they should, but expect them to honor and respect them in every way.

There are women who have husbands or partners or children who do not feel the day is special; that it’s contrived and pt upon them by society, or just really don’t care about it. They desire a small recognition, a card, a flower picked by a child. They will not receive it. They will only receive annoyance and disregard.

Many cannot celebrate with their beloved mom, because they have moved on to their eternal rest. For some this is fresh and it’s a scab being ripped off a fresh wound and for others, even though time has passed. It’s as hard as the first time they celebrated without her.

Some celebrate this day with empty places in their hearts over the child who is missing, because there are some who will never hear the words “Happy Mother’s Day” again from them. They, too, have gone to eternity and left a gaping chasm where a child used to stand. Some have lost these dear ones before or at birth. The pain is no less.

Others chose to reject their pending motherhood by abortion. Yes, the ones who chose the more heinous need prayer, too. Their hearts are hurting, even if you don’t believe it. It’s not an “easy out,” and it effects more than the women who walked that road.

Friends, enjoy your day. Treasure the loved ones that celebrate and honor you. And in that time, please lift your hurting sisters to the Throne of Grace where they will find comfort. It’s not just a privilege, it’s a command.

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