Archive | May 2014

A Homeless man Church goers ignored…

I am sure many have read this story online, as it has been around for a while now, but I just felt God urging me to share it on my blog and hoping that it touches and opens hearts to those in need in this country.

Pastor dresses as a homeless man...

Pastor dresses as a homeless man…

A pastor transformed himself into a homeless man and came 30 minutes before worship to a church of 10,000 to greet those coming to attend that morning worship. Many looked at him with stares, dirty looks, and down their nose at him. He asked for change for food and no one gave him any. Only 3 people of the 7-10,000 came up to greet him and welcome him there. He went to sit up in the front row and the ushers ushered him to the back row. He sat and listened to the morning announcements and following that the ushers got up and excitedly (they were in on him dressing this way) introduced the congregation to their new pastor. They began to clap and the clapping soon stopped when the homeless man at the back got up and began to walk to the front and the congregation became quiet. He walked up to the microphone and paused for a moment and began to recite:

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.

“For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ ‘The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” Matthew 25:35-45

After he recites these verses he looks towards the congregation and begins to tell them what he experienced before the service began and many were crying and many others hung their heads in shame. He then said to them, “Today I see a gathering of people, not a church of Jesus Christ. The world has enough people, but not enough disciples. When will YOU decide to become disciples?” He then dismisses church until next week.

Our walk with Christ should be more than talk – it should be action and we should be the feet of Jesus on earth. More importantly we are not these people’s judge, but God calls us to help our brothers and sisters in Christ. Many think it will never, ever happen to them, but one can never be sure of that – countless people have experienced hardships that they never dreamed they would ever have to face or live through. God never promises life will be without problems, besides problems make one stronger, more humble, and keeps you closer to Christ. If everything went your way and you had no troubles you would have no need for a Savior!

When I was younger I read the novel by Charles Sheldon called “In His Steps.” It was based on sermons Sheldon gave to his congregation in Topeka, Kansas. In this book Rev. Henry Maxwell encounters a homeless man who challenges him to take seriously the imitation of Christ. It was a great read and one that makes you question the things you encounter in life and ask “What Would Jesus Do?”

The homeless pastor above gave his church members something to ponder the first week he was there and to question their walk in Christ. We are to be a light in this dark world, we are to reach out and help the less fortunate whether we think they deserve it or not and treat them as we would want to be treated.

I am presently experiencing a loss of my job, which happened back in December 2013, due to no fault of my own. I know if I did not have my family, who is helping me, that I could also find myself homeless and down and out. Did I deserve to be laid off – NO, but we live in a world where there are no guarantees and what was once a sure thing today may not be a sure thing tomorrow. Even people who find themselves fired do not often deserve it, employers in most states do not need a solid reason to send you packing and it can be as lame as not wearing the right color pantyhose to work or having the wrong view point – it may have nothing to do with your work performance and may have everything to do with their personal preferences of what they are wanting in an employee. That is the evil world we live in now days.

I doubt the majority of homeless, down on their luck people wished to be in the shoes they are in now or without their job. I doubt any of them love to go up to total strangers and beg for change to get a hot cup of coffee or a sandwich for lunch that day. Can you for a moment place yourself in the shoes of those who have less and think of how it feels to have no one to help you, no one to turn to for assistance when you find yourself without money or resources to pull yourself out of a pit?

America is a country God blessed for so many years and He has given it much and the land of plenty should never have had homeless or people down on their luck living within its borders. Could this be another reason God is judging this great nation?

This week when you encounter someone homeless or down on their luck – what can you do to make a difference in their life? What can you do to get out of your comfort zone and be a bright light in their dark world? Put yourself in their shoes and ask how you would want to be treated and What Would Jesus Do if He were here? It will make your life much richer to not question, but to do what you can for another – it can change your heart and life in ways you never imagined! 🙂

Gardening and lawn work…

I finally got the lawn mowed for the first time. I took extra time to work on it because the grass had gotten so long. I first went out on the coldest day of spring dressed in more winter like wear and only got half of it done because it was too cold to finish it, as it takes about 3 hours to mow all of the grass. Then 2 days later after rain showers passed I was able to complete the other half on Saturday after getting home from work. Looks like a hay field in spots, but I hope to get back out there earlier from now on. I enjoy mowing on a riding mower – the time you have to think, meditate, and pray is great and it is relaxing also.

I love to get my hands in the dirt and dig. There is just something about working in dirt that is very therapeutic and also relaxing. I ran to town to get the last of the plants I needed to get the garden put in. There is such a short window before we get rain again, so I needed to get it done this past Sunday afternoon. We have had such a late start this year with the weather being so cold. We did have frost a little over a week ago, so I pray that is past us now and I will not have to cover these plants.

It was an eventful experience planting the garden this year because of the strong wind we had that day. Some of the seeds I was trying to plant went flying because of wind gusts – I may end up finding carrots and radishes in other parts of the garden – it should be interesting! I had to plant onions by seed this year because no one had the small onion bulbs, so this is a new experience for me and I am praying they bloom with ease!

My whole family loves Tomatoes – we love to have BLT’s in the summer months. I know some people use tomato cages around the plants, but I was thinking of staking them and somehow having them wrap around a pole, as I am using a limited space in the container I am planting them in. If anyone has any suggestions on how to do this, please send me a message!

I planted green beans for the first time in a container this year and so we will see how they fair. I also got some flowers planted in some cute pots I picked up at my sister’s consignment store. I watered everything thoroughly with Miracle Grow mixture. I went and picked asparagus for my folks who are not able to bend down and get them anymore. I thoroughly enjoyed my afternoon and got dirty between the wind blowing water and dirt onto my clothes to my dog having taken a dip in her large water bowl and then wanting my attention by jumping up on me with her muddy paws. I wish the day had not ended – I could have kept going. I love seeing the things you plant bloom and produce what they are meant to. The fact a small seed can grow into what it does is a miracle sent by God!!

Here is a picture of my dog, she is a pure bred miniature American Eskimo and she loves attention. She would have been helping me if I had let her! Her name is Zoi (zoey). She has a very heavy, beautiful coat that we have shaved off of her in the hot summer months and by fall she is getting her thick coat back. She is a sweet dog!
American_Eskimo_Dog_happy face

What are you growing in your gardens this year?

What is your favorite garden produce in the summer time?

Please feel free to share!

Unexplained events…could this be signs?

Is God sending a warning to the world that He is not pleased that people are turning their back on Him and they are only thinking of themselves? It is not just happening in America, but all over the world. Some believe in God, but do not truly have a relationship with him. Some are allowing false prophets to direct their paths and leading them away from God. It speaks of this in Matthew 24:24 – “For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.”
“There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.” – Proverbs 14:12
A great turning away will happen in the end times as stated in the Bible – read 2 Timothy 3-17.

This video shows the strange and unusual occurrences that have been taking place all over the world and it does make you stop and think – who is trying to tell us something? I truly believe these are warning signs from God to repent and turn back to Him before he comes like a thief in the night and takes the church home.

Some of what you will see…strange loud sounds in the atmosphere, strange clouds in the sky, unusual colors in the sky, the ocean freezing over in Europe, Beirut River turns blood red, birds falling dead for 2 years in a row in January, massive amounts of herring wash ashore dead, dolphins and turtles are found dead along the banks of oceans and lakes, birds dropping from the sky, large whale appears on a beach with no explanation as to what caused its death, unusual weather in locations that do not typically see snow, more deadly earthquakes, unusual lights or objects floating in the skies overhead, solar flares or tornadoes off the surface of the sun, strange animal behavior, super pods of dolphins, large number of beached dolphins, phenomenal flooding, winter tornadoes, large out of control forest fires, tsunamies, strange halo’s around the sun, dust storms not seen for years, trains carrying large tankers and other military vehicles – large quantities of them in some states in the US, and so much more.

Hosea 4:2-3 –
“2 There is only cursing,[a] lying and murder,
stealing and adultery;
they break all bounds,
and bloodshed follows bloodshed.
3 Because of this the land dries up,
and all who live in it waste away;
the beasts of the field, the birds in the sky
and the fish in the sea are swept away.”

This website gives the signs to look for as the End of Time nears and Christ returns for his Church. Bible prophecy to watch for…it is all happening today! We are living in those times because they are all happening.

Here is the video I speak about above: Strange occurrences around the world in the last couple of years…

I close with this Bible verse and pray for those seeking answers. May God bless you!

“If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” – 2 Chronicles 7:14

Are you ready?

48th Annual Cherokee PRCA Rodeo

For the last 48 years the Barnes Rodeo Circuit, of Peterson, Iowa, have been putting on a rodeo at our fair grounds at the end of May. It is a 3 day event with something for the whole family. They hold a Family, Ladies, and Full Fun Day each year. It is held on a Thursday through Saturday evening. Family night is for the whole family with free pony rides, free kids games, free petting zoo, and a kid’s rodeo. Ladies night is for the ladies with the first 500 ladies receiving a gift and coupons of savings at local Cherokee businesses. For the Fun All Day event they hold a western BBQ at the local train Depot, a train robbery at the Depot and a parade at 4:00 pm. Each night they have western vendors who have booths set up so people can look and buy their wares before the rodeo starts. Each year they also pick a rodeo queen and is also in the parade on the last day of the rodeo.

Each evening there are new riders for bareback riding, saddle bronc, bull riding, steer wrestling, barrel racing, team roping, and tie down roping.

Bob Barnes and his sister Marjorie became interested in 1950 with rodeos and began putting on their own rodeos. In 1958 Bob married Donita Ducommun from Larrabee, Iowa. Bob had already begun to build Barnes Rodeo Company and they both remained active in the rodeo business the rest of their lives. They had 3 children to their union and all three children now carry on the Barnes Rodeo Company and a rodeo company by the name of MJM, the first initials in their names, Mitzi, Marty, and John that started in 1984.

Donita passed away in August of 2011 and Bob followed her the following year in November 2012. Bob was a member and served on many Rodeo committees all across the US and was active in his church and served on boards there as well. Bob was born and raised in Cherokee, Iowa and Donita was raised in Cherokee County, Iowa near Larrabee, a small farming community just north of Cherokee a few miles. They traveled all over the US to put on rodeos and their stock is known to be the best. Bob is one of only two stock contractors to have sent stock to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo every year.

Bob also started the Midwest Christian Children’s Home near Peterson, Iowa, a home for children who are in need of physical, spiritual, and emotional healing in 1963 and served on the board until his death.

They put on a good show and always entertaining for the whole family!

For more information about the Barnes Rodeo Company and MJM Rodeo check out this link:
http://www.barnesprcarodeo.com/#

and
http://http://www.cherokeerodeo.com/content/barnes-prca-rodeo

Bob and Donita Barnes entering the arena on a horse drawn cart.

Bob and Donita Barnes entering the arena on a horse drawn cart.

Beginning ceremonies of Cherokee PRCA Rodeo each year:
Cherokee Rodeo photo 1

The Benefits of Struggling…

This is a short story I read a while ago and I saved it. I never learned who the author of this was, but it has always reminded me that struggle is part of life and a very necessary thing and without it we could not accomplish what we were meant to do in this world or reap what is rewarding.

A man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared,
he sat and watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to force
its body through that little hole.

Then it seemed to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it had
gotten as far as it could and it could go no farther. Then the man decided
to help the butterfly, so he took a pair of scissors and snipped off the
remaining bit of the cocoon. The butterfly then emerged easily.

But it had a swollen body and small, shriveled wings. The man continued
to watch the butterfly because he expected that, at any moment, the
wings would enlarge and expand to be able to support the body, which
would contract in time.

Neither happened!

In fact, the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a
swollen body and shriveled wings.

It never was able to fly.

What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand was that the
restricting cocoon and the struggle required for the butterfly to get through
the tiny opening were God’s way of forcing fluid from the body of the
butterfly into its wings so that it would be ready for flight once it achieved
its freedom from the cocoon.

Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our life. If God allowed us
to go through our life without any obstacles, it would cripple us. We would
not be as strong as what we could have been.

And we could never fly.

Author Unknown

An Important Lesson…

I came across this a while back and do not know who offered this, I did not see a name beneath this writing, but I wanted to share it because as I had said before words are powerful. Also powerful is knowing the names of the people you encounter on a daily basis. I like it when people know me by name, it gives you a sense of belonging, you are not just a mass standing in this world, but someone cared enough to learn your name.

“During my second month of nursing school, our professor gave us a pop quiz. I was a conscientious student and had breezed through the questions, until I read the last one: “What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?” Surely, this was some kind of joke.

I had seen the cleaning woman several times. She was tall, dark-haired and in her 50s, but how would I know her name? I handed in my paper, leaving the last question blank.
Just before class ended, one student asked if the last question would count toward our quiz grade. “Absolutely,” said the professor. “In your careers, you will meet many people. All are significant. They deserve your attention and care, even if all you do is smile and say ‘hello’.” “I’ve never forgotten that lesson. I also learned her name was Dorothy.”

We are all worthy, we all play a part in this huge world, we might not look like you think we should or act the way you deem appropriate, but one thing is certain, each and every one of us were created to be on this earth for a reason and we are all in this life together and our paths will cross someone’s path and maybe the test in life is how you will handle that?

QUESTION:
How does it make you feel when someone knows you by name – what emotions or feelings does that stir in you?

I Dreamed of Heaven…

I thought this poem by an unknown author was quite humbling.

We might be tempted to think we know who will be in heaven one day with us, but doesn’t that mean we are playing God? I know I am not qualified to judge who gets into heaven or not – I leave that in God’s hands! I should only be concerned with my walk and whether or not people see Christ in me – not whether I think someone needs work or is not where they should be. I pray for God to light my path and direct me in the way He wishes me to go and hope that they see Christ in me – a light in this dark world.

~~~ I Dreamed of Heaven ~~~

I dreamed of Heaven the other night
And pearly gates swung wide,
Jesus with halo bright
Ushered me inside.

And there to my astonishment
Stood folks I judged and labeled
As quite unfit, of little worth
And spiritually disabled.

Indignant words rose to my lips
But never were set free.
For every face showed stunned surprise –
No one expected me.

(Author Unknown)