Do You Have A Story To Tell? Speak Up!

I am often asked,
“How did you get started speaking?”

My mom would probably say
I stood up in my crib and asked,
“Where’s my spotlight!”

I’ve been speaking for as long as I can remember.
Bible study teacher,
small group leader,
breakout session speaker
and eventually gained enough momentum
to enter full-time ministry as a
conference and retreat keynote speaker.

I love to share what I’ve learned and experienced
so others can avoid my mistakes
or apply the discoveries I’ve made.

Do you have a story to share?
Would you like to tell others
what God has done in your life?
Is there a book in you that needs to get out?

If the answer is yes,
but you don’t know where to start,
let me give you 3 ideas to begin.

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Focus On What You’ve Got, Rather Than What You’ve Not!

Before I learned to focus on what I’ve got,
rather than what I’ve not,
I used to dread the Monday
following Mother’s Day.

As if the cascade of perfect FB posts on
Mother’s Day weren’t enough to create
a case of the covets,
every conversation on Mother’s Day Monday
was about
being showered
with attention and gifts.

 Mr. 4-Ever is a great husband.

If I could, I would clone him and
give him away as Christmas presents
to women who want
a Godly man with impeccable character.

But the clone would have to come with a disclaimer.
This is a good man.
He is kind, gentle, loving, fun,
hard-working, generous, and patient.
He is creative and calm in all situations.
He is a great kisser.
but …
a Harlequin Romance novel hero … 
He. Is. Not.

Rarely do flowers or chocolates show up
on my desk.
Good behavior gifts and
just because “I love you” texts
do not happen.

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Don’t Be An Easy Target

Mr. 4-Ever is an excellent marksman.

In an effort to improve his skills,
we watch A LOT o
videos on how to kill stuff.

Sometimes it’s a guy in camo
sitting in a tree waiting for his trophy buck.

Sometimes it’s a guy lurking in the weeds
with a goofy sounding whistle
trying to trick a turkey into coming closer.

Occasionally, we take a break from camo guys
and watch a nature video of a lion
hunting for dinner.

The Bible says in
1 Peter 5:8
Your enemy the devil prowls around
like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

Have you noticed that lions don’t go after the 
fattest,
healthiest,
most popular
animal in the middle of the pack?

Nope,
the lion goes for the easy prey.

The weak.
The broken.
The lonely.

The one on the fringe.

If our enemy the devil
prowls after us like a lion,
we are safest in the midst of a herd.

Don’t be an easy target.

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What’s Unique About You?

  Under the odd but true category,
I wonder,
What’s unique about you?

I had every intention of taking down my
Christmas tree before Easter …
I really did!
but …
it’s still up …
and lit.

Yup, up and lit.

And, yes, I know it’s weird.

I’m always the last one on the block
to dismantle the tree,
but we had such a mild winter this year,
I just kept thinking that I would have more snowy landscapes to enjoy
from my front window as I sipped warm beverages,
listening to Christmas music in the glow of my Christmas tree.

December gave way to January, and I thought,
Whatever, just one more week and I’ll take it down.

But I never did take it down!

We laughed about
having it up on Valentine’s Day.

By St. Patrick’s Day,
I was used to it.

When the kid’s came over for Easter and said,
“Mom, the neighbors are going to think you’re nuts,”
I thought, It might be time,
but I was too busy breaking my
Lenten television fast to deal with it.

(Easter Sunday with Mr. 4-Ever)

So, here we are,
the week after Easter
and my tree is still up.

And you know what?
I’m owning it.

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Have you been to the Creation Museum?

 Girls,
have you ever been to the
Creation Museum
in Petersburg, KY?

Mr. 4-Ever and I just went for the first time.
It was awesome!

Narrated exhibits
filled with life size replicas of
dinosaurs and people,
the Creation Museum brings
the story of creation,
the fall of man in the Garden of Eden,
the building of the arc,
and what happened
during and after the flood,
into clear focus.

There’s a planetarium featuring
our Created Cosmos and
Aliens: Fact or Fiction.
There is a special effects theatre
that shows films of interest
about God and his creation.
There are live presentations
from creation experts
several times a day.

Outside, there are zip lines,
botanical gardens,
a petting zoo,
camel rides and
nature walks.

I know this sounds like an advertisement
for the Creation Museum,
but I have to tell you what I saw
so you’ll understand what I learned.

Two things.

1.

We are significant to God,
worthy of his attention
and of utmost interest to him.

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3 Things Your Husband Really Wants You to Know

As someone who has
plenty of experience
with husband(s),
I assure you …

This is what your husband wants you to know.

If you don’t know my story of being
widowed twice,
you can read it here.

1.

Your husband wants you to be
committed to him.
Not just the marriage, to him!

It’s not enough to just avoid divorce.

Marriage isn’t 50-50.

Divorce is 50-50.

Marriage takes an ALL IN,
ALL THE TIME commitment.

You won’t believe how I learned this lesson!
Let me save you the humiliation.
You can read about it here.

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Surprisingly Simple Secret to A Better Life

 

If you want to be
healthier,
thinner,
think more clearly,
and enjoy life to the fullest …
the secret is surprisingly simple. 

Sleep more!

That’s right!
Sleep is the solution to
so much of what ails us.

This is marvelous news to me.
If there were an Olympic medal for sleeping,
I could bring home the gold.

WebMD.com lists 9 benefits for
a good night’s sleep.

Better overall health.
Better sex life.
Less chronic pain.
Lower risk of injury.
Better mood.
Supports weight control.
(Why didn’t they lead with this one is a mystery to me.)
Clearer thinking.
Better memory.
Stronger immunity.

Doctors tell you to sleep,
and
God tells you to rest.

But, you say,
“I’m TOO BUSY to rest!”
Me, too!

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Grumbler’s Anonymous Anyone?

Do you have anyone in your life
that’s a handful?
Someone who provokes
you to complaining
and grumbling?

Yeah, me, too.

One of my fathers-in-law was
a Golden Gloves boxing champion
for the Army during WWII.

After leaving the Army,
he joined the police force in
Milwaukee, WI. 

 

He rode motorcycles year-round
in the freezing Milwaukee, WI winters.
“Heck, yes, (except he didn’t say heck) it was cold.
We’d wrap our legs with newspaper
as insulation under our uniforms.

He was a strong man
with strong opinions
and not much of a filter
if you know what I mean.

At least, his sweet wife buffered
his coarse talk
and old-fashioned opinions
with graceful scoldings and smiles.

Then . . . his wife died. 

Suddenly,
I became the primary caregiver
for that cantankerous man! 

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God Still Speaks – Are You Listening?

Do you ever wonder
if God still speaks
to his people?

Let me assure you that He does.

Think about it.

Has a Scripture ever leapt off the page?
A passage you’ve read many times,
but suddenly,
it’s vibrant and significant
to your current situation.

Has a song on the radio
or in church brought you to tears
repenting something bitter,
or remembering something sweet?

Has the pastor delivered a sermon
and it seemed like he or she was
reading your mail?

Has a friend or stranger provided
a kind word or admonition
precisely for the season of life you’re in?

That was probably God
speaking to you,
comforting you,
reminding you.

Sometimes God speaks in a gentle whisper –
like a thought that runs across
the backyard of your brain.

When I make time to listen for Him,
I often get a thought that is
too wonderful to be my own.

Sometimes I get a picture of something
that is meaningful to me.

Other times,
God speaks with a gentle correction.

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Do You Expect Good Things From God?

 

Do you expect good things from God
or do you settle for the mundane
when God offers the miraculous?

 Mr. 4-Ever and I were driving home 
from an event on a
hot and sunny day.
We’d been on the road for hours
and I just had to have
a break … and a chocolate malt.

A jumbo cup of
thick, chocolatey deliciousness.

I tried to talk myself out of it
but the hankering would not go away.

Finally, I asked Mr. 4-Ever
to be on the lookout for ice cream.

At the next exit,
we followed the signs to McDonald’s.

Mind you, McDonald’s will do,
but I had something a little different in mind.

I wanted hand scooped ice-cream
and lots of malt powder mixed
with whole milk – blended together till
it was a cold, smooth concoction
fresh from the whir of a malt maker.

Just as we saw the golden arches,
I spied an ice cream stand
on the other side of the road.

“Can we go there instead?”
I asked Mr. 4-Ever excitedly.

He was already in McDonald’s mode,
drive-through quick,
inexpensive and satisfactory.

“No, let’s just stick with McDonald’s,”
was his disappointing reply.

“Ok,” I drooped,
“I have to use the ladies room anyway.
I’ll go in and get the shake.”

At the counter,
I saw a big “OUT OF ORDER” sign
on the machine that oozes milk shakes.
I was practically giddy as I asked,
“Is your milk shake machine working?”

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