Monthly Archives: June 2011

car key

I lost my keys…

I lost my car keys. I’ve turned the house upside down, looked in every purse and pant pocket—no keys. I have an appointment across town right now. So, why am I writing you when I should be enjoying a panic attack? Now that’s an interesting story…

I was building up to a memorable panic attack when my own words reached through the frustration and literally made me stop my frenzied search for the keys and ask, “Is this a problem or an opportunity to see God work?” Ouch.

I’ve been acting like this is the biggest problem ever. Maybe I should claim God’s promise to ‘cause all things to work together for good’ and ask Him if there’s something else He wants me to be doing. Maybe the appointment isn’t on His agenda for me today. Maybe writing you is.

Here’s the amazing thing—as I wrote the first sentence of this blog God’s Spirit spoke to my heart.

What is the key to peace and joy, Kathy? You’ve misplaced it My daughter. In the push to meet project deadlines and family commitments, you’ve focused on the task and assumed responsibility for making it all happen. You’re like the van. You have everything you need to do what you’re suppose to do, but you’ve misplaced the key (trust in Me and dependence on My Spirit). It’s not hard to find, but you aren’t going to go anywhere until you use it.”

Wow. I teach that stuff all the time and yet I forgot it. The pressure of timelines and relationships took my focus off Him and on to the tasks at hand. Here’s the thing, it’s not that I’ve been neglecting my devotion times. It’s not that I haven’t been talking with God. But sometimes life moves so fast that it takes a more proactive commitment to keep my focus on Him in the midst of the frenzy.

I know we’re on the threshold of summer and the pace of life is (theoretically) suppose to slow down, but I also know the enemy of our joy never takes a break. He’s always looking for ways to take our eyes off Jesus and he’s very good at what he does. If you find you’re stressed or in a frenzy, I pray you’ll stop, ask if this is a problem or an opportunity to see God work and then ask God to show you the opportunity He’s providing! It’s the key to peace and joy. I promise it works!

It was by faith that Moses left the land of Egypt, not fearing the kings anger.  He kept right on going because he kept his eyes on the One who is invisible. Hebrew 13:27 NLT  (underline added)

Movie stuff pic

Movies and Kids

The summer movie season has begun! How do you decide if you should let your kids see a movie or not? Here are two websites we always check before going to the theater or renting a DVD…

Movieguide.org provides very helpful movie analysis. Not only do you get a synopsis of the movie and a critics review, they also provide a clear idea of the worldview children will see in the movie.

We like dove.org because they give details about what language, violence and sex (if any) the movie contains.

So let’s say you’re considering going to the new X-Men movie: X-Men, First Class. Movieguide.org gives a great synopsis and detailed worldview analysis. In summary it says:

X-MEN: FIRST CLASS has a convoluted, uninvolving story with a strong humanist worldview that promotes evolution and contains some very cruel violence, foul language and salacious content.

Dove.org gives a more favorable review of the story. The critic clearly thinks the movie is well done, and is sad that it can’t receive the Dove Family Friendly rating. Dove.org provides the detailed information below (which I love), but their worldview analysis is weak.

Content Description: (from Dove.org)
Sex: Kissing; a few innuendos; a man kisses woman’s chest; implied sex between unmarried couple.
Language: GD-3; G/OMG-3; J-3; H-6; “Hellfire Club”-2; F-1; B-1; A-2; D-1; Bloody-1
Violence: A man uses his mental powers to make another man slap himself; a character is stabbed in the hand and another in the stomach although it is not graphic; a character is stabbed in the back; guns pointed at people; shootings; explosions; ship and plane crashes; a woman is shot point blank but it is not a graphic scene; fights; character uses powers to send fire at enemies.
Drugs: Drinking in several scenes; bar scenes; talk of having a drink; beer and champagne; the smoking of cigarettes and cigars; a man is in a beer drinking contest.
Nudity: Strong cleavage; women in lingerie and skimpy clothing; blue skinned woman and outline of breast clearly seen; female manikins with breasts and rears showing.
Other: Disagreements among characters; evolution is mentioned on several occasions.

Armed with these two websites you will be able to make wise and informed decisions about the movies your kids see this summer!

hot water bottle pic

Faith and a hot water bottle

I want to share a story with you that encouraged me at a very low part of my day yesterday. It’s long, but it’s worth it! Sometimes we need to be reminded that God knows everything that’s going on. He knows our needs and our burdens. He knows exactly how He’s going to solve our problems and He’s working on the solutions even before we know to pray about them. Sometimes it takes the faith of a child to remind us of our All Knowing, All Powerful and Faithful God…

THE HOT WATER BOTTLE
A True Story By Helen Roseveare, Missionary to Africa, re-told by Kathy Bright

On a dark night in Central Africa, not so very long ago, Dr. Helen Roseveare worked hard to help a mother give birth to her premature baby. The baby was finally born, but sadly, its mother didn’t survive the night. She left behind her weak and tiny baby as well as an inconsolable 2 year-old daughter.

Dr. Helen knew that the chances of survival for the little baby were small. They had no electricity, no incubator, and no special feeding facilities. Although the equator is known for it’s warm temperatures, many are surprised to learn that the nights can be chilly and the drafts can prove deadly for premature babies.

The new little orphan was placed in a special box and wrapped in cotton wool. The fire was stoked to warm the room and water was heated for their most critical life saving device, a hot water bottle. Carefully the student mid-wife poured the warm water into the bottle. But the equator is a harsh environment for rubber and all too quickly it falls apart in the elements. The mid-wife cried out in frustration as the last of the hot water bottle burst in her hands.

Dr. Helen says that “as in the West, it is no good crying over spilled milk; so, in Central Africa it might be considered no good crying over a burst water bottle. They do not grow on trees, and there are no drugstores down forest pathways.” She told her interns to put the baby as close to the fire as possible and to sleep between the door and the baby in order to block the cold drafts.

The next morning the baby was still alive, but not out of danger. They desperately needed a hot water bottle.

Dr. Helen would often pray with some of the children who lived at the orphanage. This day was no exception. At noon she gathered the children and shared some of the prayer needs. Ten-year-old Ruth listened intently as Dr. Helen told them about the premature baby and the battle to keep it alive and warm without a hot water bottle. Ruth’s heart hurt for the two-year-old sister who had been crying since her mommy died. When they bowed their heads to pray, Ruth knew just what to ask for.

Dr. Helen said that Ruth’s prayer was in the usual blunt consciousness of the African children and it caught her totally off guard. “Please, God,” she prayed, “send us a water bottle. It’ll do no good tomorrow, God, the baby’ll be dead; so, please send it this afternoon.” While Dr. Helen was still recovering from the audacity of Ruth’s prayer, the young girl added, “…And while You are about it, would You please send a dolly for the little girl so she’ll know You really love her?”

What was Dr. Helen to do? If she said, “Amen” would she be a hypocrite? She truly did not believe that God could answer Ruth’s prayer. She says that, although she knew that God could do anything (the Bible told her so) she admits that when the rubber meets the road (no pun intended!) there were limits…weren’t there?

The reality was, in order to answer Ruth’s prayer, God would have had to have someone send a package from the homeland to Africa. In the four years Dr. Helen had been in Africa, she’d never received one package from home… not one. And if, by some miracle someone did send a package, who would think to put a hot water bottle in it? No one would dream of sending a hot water bottle to the equator!

Have you guessed what happened? If you believe in an All Powerful and All Knowing God who answers prayers, you have! In the middle of the afternoon Dr. Helen received a message that a package had arrived at her home. Gathering the children she went to find a large, 22-pound box on her veranda!

It was like Christmas morning as thirty to forty pairs of eyes watched her open the lid and lift out the contents. Brightly colored, knitted jerseys were handed out to their delight. Knitted bandages for leprosy patients and a box of raisins and sultanas came next. Dr. Helen reached in the box again. She felt it before she saw it. Her hands wrapped around the unmistakable texture of rubber! When she pulled it from the box she cried, “A brand new rubber, hot water bottle!”

Dr. Helen may not have prayed for it, or believed that God would send it, but Ruth did! The young girl ran to the package and cried out, “If God has sent the bottle, He must have sent the dolly, too!” Sure enough, at the bottom of the box Ruth found a small, beautifully dressed dolly. Her dark eyes sparkled with excitement. “Can I go over with you, Mummy,” she asked Dr. Helen, “and give this dolly to that little girl, so she’ll know that Jesus really loves her?” How could she say no?

Five months before Ruth prayed for a hot water bottle and a dolly, Dr. Helens former Sunday school leader was prompted by God to have the class send her a package. In that package they specifically obeyed His leading and included a hot water bottle and a dolly for one of the African girls. As Dr. Helen says, “five months earlier in answer to the believing prayer of a ten year-old to bring it “that afternoon!”
Isaiah 65:24 says:
And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.