Ask Me

Ten years ago, the doctor said there was nothing more he could do. He sent me home and told me to avoid allergens. On Labor Day weekend, I moved my office home and was housebound for 87 days while my body healed.

Three years later, I stepped down from my job as administrator of the Fairfield Foursquare Church and bookkeeper of Agapeland Preschool and Childcare Center.

The following May, they took the only antihistamine that worked for me off of the market. It looked like being housebound was permanent.

I asked God if it was, and if not, how long. He said, “Three years.”

At the end of 2010, I was sitting at a potluck, (honoring Dean & Nellie Oosthoek and Betty Leafgreen), when God clearly told me it would be the last time I attended the Foursquare Church.

I couldn’t believe it, I thought I heard wrong. But, early in 2011, God directed David to visit the Faith Christian Outreach Church Satellite here in Fairfield.

In July, 2011, I started sneaking into church at FCOC…when I was not on Prednisone. I went early, wore a mask, scarf, large glasses, and sat alone in the balcony to avoid crowds. I was one of the last ones out the door because I had to wait while the drums were torn down and loaded in the van.

Over the last 3 years, I have been taking “babysteps” of faith…like sneaking into church…and gained freedom one step at a time.

Three weeks ago, I called the doctor because I was doing another round of Prednisone and had to spend the first week in the house. I asked if I was still restricted.

I heard the most wonderful words, “There are no restrictions on your chart!” I am normally restricted from the time Ragweed blooms until we get a killing frost…that was 104 days in 2011.

Since then, I have been going out, (without a mask, glasses or scarf), to church, worship practice and even shopping!

I spent the first three years knocking on a door God had closed. I cannot wait for heaven. I will be with all the people I love from the Foursquare Church, my new friends that I love from FCOC, and my friends from the churches of my childhood.

If you want to know your future, all you have to do is ask.

Jeremiah 37:7, “…Zedekiah, you wanted Jeremiah to ask me, the Lord God of Israel, what is going to happen. So I will tell you…”

I was sitting at my kitchen table yesterday writing, when God reminded me of a particularly hectic time when I was working at the Foursquare Church. I was on an IRS deadline and was struggling with concentration as the childcare center was active, full and noisy. My boss sent me home with the laptop for a few hours to finish the report.

I remember thinking, “It’s so peaceful here. I wish I could work here full-time.” God saw the desire of my heart, but knew I could not have it and remain in my current job.

He closed that door and opened the door to writing blogs. His plan was better than anything I could ask, think or imagine, (see Ephesians 3:20)!

Paid a Little; God Covered Most

I shared on an earlier post about the medical bills we were facing, see “Chipping Away at It,” http://wp.me/pK67X-UI.

This week we received two letters stating that 100% financial assistance on two of the three largest bills was granted. That left one small bill at that hospital which an income tax refund covered.

Now we only owe one hospital. Praise God!

Today we received a letter from our insurance company stating they reprocessed the bill at the third hospital. They paid 3/4 of that bill! Instead of paying on bills totaling thousands of dollars, we are left with a balance of a couple hundred dollars! Thank you, Jesus!

“How Great is Our God” – Hillsong

August 17, 2013

Our time on earth is the only “Hell” the believer will ever experience. We go through times of hardship and think things just have to get better…but they may not! Jeremiah was in such circumstances.

Jeremiah 37:13-15, “…a sentry…seized Jeremiah the prophet saying, ‘You are deserting to the Chaldeans’…then said Jeremiah, ‘I am not’…the sentry would not listen…and brought him to the princes…the princes were enraged…and beat him and put him in prison in the house of Jonathan the scribe….”

It went from bad to worse!

Jeremiah was:

  1. Falsely accused, 37:13.
  2. Not believed when telling his side, 37:14.
  3. Brought to the princes who became enraged, 37:15.
  4. Beaten, 37:15.
  5. Put in prison, 37:15.
  6. Left in the cells in the dungeon for many days, 37:16.
  7. Moved to the court of the guard, 37:21.
  8. Threatened with death, 38:4.
  9. Cast into a cistern full of mud, 38:6.
  10. Left to starve, 38:9.
  11. Rescued and moved back to the court of the guard, 38:13.

No matter how bad things are going now, God will still take care of you. In the case of Jeremiah, he used an Ethiopian, Jeremiah 38:7-13.

June 18, 2013

The wisest financial decision you will ever make is to serve God and give him 10%, called a tithe, of your income, right off the top. If you are determined to live on the income you now have, and live debt-free, God will multiply the funds you have. He doesn’t multiply it into more funds, as much as he makes it stretch to meet the needs. The secret is in being generous, even when you are struggling.

2 Corinthians 8:2, “For in  the midst of an ordeal of severe tribulation, their abundance of joy and their depth of poverty [together] have overflowed in wealth of lavish generosity on their part.”

I received my last paycheck in 2007, and although I have ads on my frugalfish.org blog, I have not generated any income on it or this website.

I am determined to live within our means, even though my husband’s income has also been reduced four times. We set aside a small percentage of our income to help others and are consistently looking for items we no longer need to give to Good Will.

God has honored our giving beyond my wildest dreams. We have paid off our medical expenses, credit cards, van, truck and house during these last five years.

When you serve God, you get abundance and over flowing generosity.

June 15, 2013

The postmark on the card was from Stamford, CT. The card inside showed a beautiful little girl, Olivia Rose Engel. It was a “Thank You” for the sympathy card and letter I sent.

I was touched – and impressed with God’s timing. I received the card on Flag Day, 5 months to the day of Olivia’s death in the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy.

My first thought was, “She’s beautiful. I can’t wait to meet her.”

Someday, I will join her in heaven and at some point, during eternity, I will meet her. I will tell her about my granddaughter, Olivia, and about my grandmother, Marie Rose. I will ask about her brother, Brayden and tell her about my nephew, Brayden.

Today’s verse reminds us that our hope is not restricted to this life.

1 Corinthians 15:29, “If we who are [abiding] in Christ have hope only in this life and that is all, then we are of all people most miserable and to be pitied.”

I will continue to pray for all the families who were affected by this tragedy. I know God answers prayer. He answered my prayer for my computer, which was not repairable. I was able to replace the broken components with the cash we had on hand in our “appliances category.”

May 28, 2013

They took Bromfed off of the market in May, 2008. It was the antihistamine that worked the best for me. Without it, I could not leave the house, unless I was using Prednisone. Doctors have to limit the use of Prednisone due to its side effects.

In the natural, it looked like I would be housebound until I died. By faith, I continued playing the piano, believing that one day I would play in a church service again. I planned ahead, just like Joseph did in today’s verse.

Hebrews 11:22, “[Actually] by faith Joseph, when nearing the end of his life, referred to [the promise of God for] the departure of the Israelites out of Egypt and gave instructions concerning the burial of his own bones. [Genesis 50:24, 25; Exodus 13:19.]”

In November of last year, I was released to attend church on Sunday mornings. In March I was again playing the piano substituting for the keyboard player at regular services.

After reading today I realized, since that first prayer had been answered, I needed to believe for something else and act on it.

 

May 24, 2013

I had just got in the bathroom when I heard a knock on the front door. I was going to ignore it; but I looked at the clock and thought it might be the mailman with a package.

Before I got there they knocked again. I put on a pleasant face and opened the door. I frowned when I saw my son who had forgotten his key.

We all have different reasons for not responding when we hear a knock.

Acts 12:14, “And recognizing Peter’s voice, in her joy she failed to open the gate, but ran in and told the people that Peter was standing before the porch gate.”

“Not to open, for neither was it a time nor an hour of night for that, but to listen who was there.” Critical and Explanatory Commentary, Vol. II

I didn’t want to open the door because of inconvenience.

Rhoda did not want to open the door because of the time of night.

Today God is knocking. Will we open the door?

May 20, 2013

I can relate to the man who was lame from birth. My disease made its ugly appearance when I was 3 months old. I understand having a medical condition for decades. When I read today’s verse, I wondered how Peter knew just what to do.

Acts 3:7, “Then he took hold of the man’s right hand with a firm grip and raised him up. And at once his feet and ankle bones became strong and steady.”

“…precisely what his Lord had done to his own mother-in-law (Mark 1:31).” Critical and Explanatory Commentary, Vol. II

There was more than one miracle that happened. Not only were his bones healed but he walked. He had never learned how to walk, but he did it anyway! He also leaped.

Babies creep and crawl before they stand and learn to walk. This man stood, walked and leaped in a matter of minutes.

God not only healed his bones, he trained them.

April 26, 2013

Today’s verse is one we need to remember for when we are having “one of those days;” you know, a day when everything goes wrong.

2 Chronicles 20:23, “For [suspecting betrayal] the men of Ammon and Moab rose against those of Mount Seir, utterly destroying them. And when they had made an end of the men of Seir, they all helped to destroy one another.”

On the days we feel like we are being threatened by three different things, remember to fast, pray and praise. Like Jehoshaphat, we may see the three things destroy each other!

 

April 19, 2013

This week God granted a secret desire of my heart. It was so grand that I dared not even speak it. Yet, He saw it in my heart and gave it to me. In Isaiah 61:3, God promises us beauty for ashes. God kept his promise to Job as we see in today’s verse.

Job 42:15, “And in all the land there were no women so fair as the daughters of Job, and their father gave them inheritance among their brothers.”

“Names significant of his restored prosperity. Jemima, daylight, after his ‘night of calamity’…Kezia, cassia, an aromatic herb, instead of his offensive breath and ulcers. Keren-happuch, ‘horn of stibrium,’ a paint with which females dyed their eyelids, in contrast to his ‘horn defiled in the dust.’ The names imply the beauty of his daughters.” Critical and Explanatory Commentary, Vol. I

In a time when women were considered property, his daughters were not only known for their beauty, but received equal inheritances as his sons. He must have been immensely wealthy for his sons not to revolt when he did it.