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Showing posts from 2017

Face-plant In Gratitude

I’ve said it often and it bears saying again……..
“If you can’t think of anything to be thankful for, it’s time take off the blinders and check your surroundings.” Everything you have, everything and everyone you know, every sense of love you feel, everything of any beauty is a gift from God. Is it still difficult to think of anything you’re thankful for?

During the hardest and darkest times, we are all still blessed beyond measure. Maybe it’s past time for all of us to take a careful look around and ask God to forgive our ignorance. Shouldn't each day we awaken be reason enough to fall on our faces before His generosity?

And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some…

God: #1 Problem Solver

I know it comes as no surprise that challenges arise in this thing called life.  No doubt, you like me, probably wish they would be fewer in number, but I remind myself of the great Andrae Crouch line, "If I'd never had a problem, I wouldn't know God could solve them."  Recently, He's certainly been up to a lot of problem solving.

Last week, Middle Tennessee Women's Retreat (MTWR) announced new dates, April 6-8, 2018.  It's a long story, but the reason for the change had to do with the planned location being sold, resulting in changes to the cost proposal for the retreat, and all of this occurring right in the middle of when we would typically be finalizing the retreat brochure.  Because of uncertainties and holdups, we weren't even able to start the brochure until Monday of this week.  Karissa is hard at work on that project.

In the span of two weeks' time, God took what seemed impossible and proved once again that He's all about solving our p…

More Than Routine

When I woke up this morning and realized that it was time to get up and get on with the day, I was physically able to put both feet on the floor and walk to the coffee pot.
I know I’m bad to do little things like that every day and never give them a second thought.God reminded me this morning, however, that it’s those everyday things I take for granted much too often that He wants me to remember and be thankful for.How about you?What is it that you have experienced most every day of your life that you are now realizing are far more than just routine?
Before my Mama passed away, she was in a nursing home for a year….bedridden because of a lot of crippling issues in her back.She had always been full of energy, dearly loved moving fast through her days, whatever she was doing.She didn’t just water her flowers around that big farmhouse, she did it with vim and vigor, being kinda proud of how quick she could do it.But in those last months before she went to Heaven, she wasn’t able to do t…

Live, Watch, Learn

I have a friend who is old enough to be my mama. She reminds me of that often, saying she knows she’s old enough because she has a son who is my age :).

This great friend is a gift from God. Do you have those people in your life who always leave you with a better attitude and outlook on life? She has always accepted me, warts and all, and is interested in every part of my life.

Age has never entered into the dynamics of our relationship. This old thing of “generational gaps” is well-outdated, and I’m so glad!!! I do know that I learn from those who have walked the way before me, and I’m thankful there are those still making their way down the road who are respectful of those from whom they can learn.

Reuben Welch said it well, and has been quoted millions of times from his wonderful book, “We Really Do Need Each Other”. That goes for the younger teaching the older and the older teaching the younger.

I still want to learn, don’t you? Nothing thrills me more than to sense that there is …

Bring Up a Child

Sunday was a good, good day! Karissa and I started off in Sturgis, MI and enjoyed making new friends at Sturgis Church of the Nazarene. Sunday night, we were with “old” friends in Goshen, IN for the second time (it’s really good when they invite you back :)). It was a delight to be with them again.
Lots of great things happened Sunday. First of all, it was so much fun for us to have Paula and Bob Alt spending the day with us at both a.m. and p.m. services. The crowning joy of the day was when it came time for the offering Sunday evening. To my amazement, Pastor asked his very young son to assist him. I completely expected that he would be passing the plate only, but no….his Daddy asked him to pray over the offering. Again, I guess I expected that a preschooler would be saying a little one sentence prayer, but again, NO. He prayed a lengthy prayer for the offering. To say I was touched isn’t beginning to describe how this affected me.
Bringing up a child in the ways of the Lord was tr…

God, Childhood, and His Plan

I can’t remember when church wasn’t a consistent and constant part of my life, and it is a real challenge to come up with many memories that don’t, in some form or another, include gospel music. Growing up on a cotton farm meant a lot of hard work.We didn’t hire help because my family did it all.You can imagine how excited I was as a kid to plan for the weekends when I knew gospel singing would be a huge part of Saturday and Sunday.Twice a year, those convention songbooks came in from the Stamps-Baxter Music Company.I remember Daddy and Mama talking about how great it was that a few of the men paid for those books and carried them to every Friday night singing, Saturday night singing, Sunday afternoon singing, Sunday night singing – and I’ll not overlook all-day Sunday singings.Daddy, Mama, and others in the community offered to pay for books but Mr. Willie, Mr. Claron, Mr. Tommy, and others who paid for them wouldn’t take a dime.It was just what they did…they made sure others could …

Truly Friends Forever

I have a great group of supporters (supporting Ann Downing Ministries in myriads of ways).I don’t think I’ve always appreciated what real “support” in this case means.But, perhaps I’m getting there! One very important part of that great group of close friends and loved ones is my friend, Dolly Simms.I’ve known her since she was in Jr. High when I was with the Speer Family.That acquaintance lasted on through the Downing years.Her family made sure they attended most every appearance the Downings made within a reasonable (and sometimes, not so reasonable) proximity of where they’ve always lived…in Lexington, KY. When Paul was in the hospital for two months in Lexington before passing away, Dolly became my best friend.She stayed at the hospital every night for those 56 nights as we slept on the floor of that waiting room outside the critical care unit. After Paul’s death, Dolly was a regular at my house and a regular on the road with me whenever she could. She became like family to me.I …