Sunday, January 31, 2016

Answered Prayer

The word of the week is ANSWER  
something spoken or written in reply to a question :  a correct response :  something done in response or reaction :  a solution of a problem

When we pray, we often ask only for the "big" needs in our lives.
  • Lord, please provide a new car for me.
  • Lord, please heal my mom.
  • Lord, please help me find a new job.

What about the everyday needs that we often take for granted? Do you pray for those also?
  • Lord, please give us safe travels.
  • Lord, please protect my children.
  • Lord, give me strength for this task.
  • Lord, show me someone I can encourage today.

If you do pray for the everyday needs, do you notice when the answers come? Or, do you only notice the answers to the "big" things?

I was cleaning out my e-mails recently, and came across a note from my dad. He is allowing me to share this with you today, as it expresses what answered prayer means to him:

From: James L. McIntosh 
Sent: Monday, July 30, 2012 8:27 AM
Subject: Answered prayer

Sometimes we look for the big things for answered prayer. I am finding the answered prayers in the "little" things we pass by and take for granted.

Last Friday I was praying for protection for our trip to the Creation Museum and God gave safety. 

I also prayed for my children and their children. My grandson slid off a rain slick road and had a partial roll over. Little damage to the car and he was safe. God answered again.

Sunday I prayed for strength in teaching our Sunday School class as I have a had a very hoarse voice from a sinus infection. He gave me a full voice and, afterward, I went hoarse again. He gave what I asked for.

This morning (Monday) I heard the road report coming in and there was a pile up on I55. I was going another direction but it reminded me to pray for the accident victims. As I was praying for them I asked for protection for myself again and, as I was coming off the PSB onto I55 south, I heard a loud bang, looked to see what it was and just missed getting hit by a big truck who smashed another car. God answered again.

Recently, I asked to see opportunities to witness. While waiting for my wife's MRI, I engaged in conversation with a lady in the waiting area. She was trusting in a works-based salvation. She pondered the conversation we had and said, "Now, I believe in Christ alone." God answered again.
God answers prayer! But we don't have because we don't ask (or sometimes because we ask with wrong motives).
James 4:2b-3 -  You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. (ESV)
So Pray! It is powerful, and is the most horrible thing to Satan to see a Believer praying.


Tuesday, January 26, 2016

REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Jesus Today Devotions for Kids [GIVEAWAY CLOSED]

Are you ready for my first review and giveaway of 2016?

Jesus Today: Devotions for Kids is a children's devotional book, for kids in the 6-10 age range. It's a hardcover book of 150 devotions, with the main theme being "Jesus is a Friend who is always by your side."

My honest opinion:  I love the idea, and the content. This is a unique devotional book that is written as though Jesus is speaking directly to the readers, assuring them He is in control of their lives. Plus, each devotion includes Scripture verses to go with it, which is very important for kids to read and know. The only thing I did not like about the book is the look of it. I guess it is meant to look like an old, worn book, and maybe the publisher has a reason for this that I don't know about, but to me (a detailed person who loves to see things neat and tidy), I just wasn't impressed with a book cover that looks old when it really isn't. However, I would not let the look of the book keep you from purchasing it. The content is good!

Take a peek inside at devotion #32:
When the book is open, the devotion is on the left side. The right side has Scripture verses to go along with the devotion. The verses included with devotion #32 are John 21:19, Psalm 23:1 & 4, and Psalm 18:28.

Enter below for your chance to win your own copy of this book. Entries will be accepted until Saturday, January 30, 2016, at 8:00 p.m. CST. Must be 18 or older to enter. One entry per mailing address.

"Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”


Sunday, January 24, 2016

You Have A Purpose

The word of the week is PURPOSE
PURPOSE is the aim or goal of a person : what a person is trying to do, become, etc.
My husband, David, met someone who used to attend church and understood the meaning of Salvation through Jesus Christ, but he was throwing his life away with drugs and alcohol. He was super depressed because he knew he was addicted and was tired of the life he was living. In a brief moment, David tried to encourage the man by simply saying, "God has a purpose for your life." The man focused on David and asked, "Do you really think so?" David answered "Yes" and the man broke down in tears. He felt worthless, and defeated, and stuck; yet someone told him God has a purpose for his life. God had a reason for him to be alive. It was what he needed to hear. It's what we all need to hear from time to time, because we are all sinful and we all have moments when we feel like failures. The good news is that, whatever our failures are, we can always make a new beginning with God. So, remember this:  no matter who you are, or what you have been through, our Father in Heaven has a purpose for YOU. Read the following verses to see what God's Word has to say about your purpose in this world. Then, make a new start today, a new commitment, to try and fulfill the purpose God has for you.

Ephesians 2:10 -  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (ESV)
YOU ARE HERE TO SERVE THE LORD AND OTHERS (with the use of your God-given gifts and talents) 
Psalm 100:2 - Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before Him with joyful singing. (NAS)

1 Peter 4:10 - As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace. 

1 Thessalonians 5:11 - Therefore encourage one another, and build up one another, just as you also are doing.

Philippians 2:3-5 - Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus (NAS)

Colossians 3:17 - Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. (NAS)
Mark 16:15 - And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation."
YOU ARE HERE TO LOVE - Love God and Love others
Matthew 22:37-39 - And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ (NAS)

Ephesians 5:1-2 - Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

Psalm 95:6-7 - Come, let us worship and bow down, Let us kneel before the Lord our Maker.
For He is our God,
And we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand. (NAS)

YOU ARE HERE TO BRING GLORY TO GOD (And, you will bring glory to God by doing all of the above.)
1 Corinthians 10:31 - So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God

Make a new start today, a new commitment, 
to fulfill your God-given purpose.

To help remind you of your purpose, here is a Google document that you can print out and keep handy for future reference:  


Sunday, January 17, 2016

Searching For My Pen Pals from Taiwan

The word of the week is SEARCH
to carefully look for someone or something : to try to find someone or something
When I was in High School and the early days of college (1986-1988), I had two pen pals from Taiwan. I had joined the International Pen Pal Club, and was so excited when I received mail from someone overseas. I was able to learn more about their country, make new friends, and share my faith with them both. One girl was interested in my faith, but not convinced of its truth. The other girl was very interested and eventually said she had become a Christian. Over time, we lost track of each other, so I am now on a quest to find them and see what has become of them. It is my hope that someone will see this, and will have some sort of contact information for either of them.

The first one is Su-Yeng Lin (a.k.a. Lucy). Her birthday is in May 1971. At the time we were writing, she was a student and was living in Chia I City, Taiwan. She had one older sister, and 2 older brothers. Her father died when she was very young. Her mother died in 1987, while we were pen pals. Then, she lived with a classmate for awhile so she could be closer to her school in Taipei City. In her last letter to me, she said she wanted to go back to Chia I City. After that, we lost track of each other. Here are a couple of pictures she sent me.   

The second one is I-Ping Lian (a.k.a. Yvonne). Yvonne was a student at National Taiwan University in Taipei, Taiwan, and was majoring in Business Administration. She was born in July 1968. She had 2 brothers and 2 sisters, and was the oldest of the siblings. She said she had a friend in Los Angeles, and one in New York also. She was the pen pal who was most interested in learning about Christianity, so I shared with her as much as I could. Then, in her last letter to me, she said she had become a Christian. Here is a portion of the letter I received from her:
Is it difficult  for you to read the letter I wrote to you? Do you think the sentences I wrote are funny or not fluent? If I have any defects, please tell me. Now, I am a Christian, too. My friend gave me a Bible. I read it every night. But, I can't understand it very well. I prayed to God to help me in my troubles. Do you think God can hear what I said to Him? How will you spend your summer vacation? I'll sign off. Write back as soon as you can. Sincerely yours, Yvonne
I was so excited about her news and wrote back to her a couple more times, but never heard anything in return. I have wondered for many years what happened to her.

If anyone has any information about these two ladies (they would be in their 40's by now), please contact me, or direct them to this blog so that they can contact me themselves.

In the meantime, if you are interested in making new friends, learning about a different culture, and want to share the love of Jesus with others who may not know Him, being a pen pal is a great way to do all of that. I can not find the address or link for the International Pen Pal Club I was a part of. But, if you do an Internet SEARCH (there's that word again for this week), you will find several different pen pal clubs you could try. I don't have any experience with any of them, so I can't recommend one. I would love to hear your thoughts if any of you have tried one of these clubs.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

God Will Be With Us Wherever We Go

Today is the beginning of a new series of articles I plan on sharing with you. We'll call it WORD OF THE WEEK. Each Sunday, I will share a word, the word will be defined, then I will share a personal experience or something I have learned based on the word. The topics will vary, but my hope is that these articles will bring encouragement as we focus our attention on God's love for us, and strive to serve Him as we continue our earthly journeys.

The word for this week is CHANGE.

I have a feeling that 2016 is going to be a year full of change for me and my family. 

I'm not talking about the kind of change that jingles in your pockets. I'm talking about the kind that is an inevitable part of life. The kind that can be helpful or hurtful. The kind that everyone experiences many times throughout their lives. The kind that, in an instant, can make something in your life different than what it had been. 
CHANGE: to make (someone or something) different
Some people hate this kind of change, others love it.
Some people despise it, others crave it.
Some people resist it, others embrace it.

Whatever the case, change is something we all must learn to deal with - because change will happen whether we like it or not. It will never go away.

I have experienced many changes in my lifetime - changing schools, changing churches, changing jobs, getting married, buying a house, becoming a parent, losing a loved one, dealing with cancer, and the list goes on - but, the change I want to tell you about today is the most recent change for my family.

At the beginning of December, my husband took a new job in a different county. He has been driving back and forth (50 minutes one way) until we can find a new house and sell our current one. While we haven't yet found a new home, our family knows the time will be coming soon for us to move away from a town we have grown comfortable in - a town we have lived in for over 7 years, a town where we have made forever friends - in order to move to a different town.

Moving is never easy, and we are not in love with the idea yet (especially the kids); but, the verse above says the Lord will be with us wherever we go. We are holding onto that promise, and are looking forward to seeing what new adventures lie ahead. Please join us in praying for God's blessings in this move, and for a smooth transition for us all.

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Sunday, January 3, 2016

Encouragement Challenge #45: Review and Choose

Today is the FINAL POST of regularly scheduled weekly "Encouragement Challenges." Can you believe it was one year ago that I started these? Listed below, you will find the links to each of the challenges from the past year. There are a total of 45 (an entire year's worth, minus the 7 weeks I took off during the Summer.) Browse through the list and, for this final weekly ENCOURAGEMENT CHALLENGE, choose one of your favorites and do it again:

NOTE:  Next Sunday, I will be starting a new series of articles that I hope will be interesting and encouraging for you to read. Check in next week to find out more.  

#1 - Pray for Others
#2 - Send a "Thinking of You" Card
#3 - Encourage Christian Prisoners Arrested for their Faith
#4 - Show Hospitality to Strangers
#5 - Share with Others
#6 - Do a Random Act of Kindness
#7 - Encourage Your Ministers and Church Leaders
#8 - Comfort A Hurting Friend
#9 - Send an e-Card
#10 - Send a Video Reminder of God's Promises
#11 - This World is Temporary - Remind Others to Keep Looking Up
#12 - Express Gratitude for Others
#13 - Remain True - Encouragement for Those Who Feel Distant from the Lord
#14 - Encourage Others with the Good News of Jesus
#15 - Pray for Autism
#16 - Encourage A Bereaved Spouse
#17 - Pay it Forward
#18 - Pray for America
#19 - Honor Mothers
#20 - Thank an EMS Worker
#21 - Remember the Fallen
#22 - Give Candy Just Because
#23 - Be Full of Cheer
#24 - Spend Time with Your Children
#25 - Honor Fathers
#26 - Turn Off Technology
#27 - Should These Continue? Let Me Know Your Thoughts
#28 - Meet Together with Other Christians
#29 - Learn About the 5 Love Languages
#30 - Use Words of Affirmation
#31 - Do an Act of Service
#32 - Give A Gift "Just Because"
#33 - Spend Quality Time with Someone
#34 - The Power of Touch
#35 - A Morning Prayer
#36 - Keep Giving Even When it Appears You Have Nothing to Give
#37 - Appreciate Our Military Personnel
#38 - Send Encouraging Words
#39 - Make and Share a Thankful List
#40 - Send A Care Package
#41 - Write Tributes for Christmas Gifts
#42 - Two Christmas Gift Ideas that Share Positive Thoughts
#43 - Share Your Christmas Goodies
#44 - Choose A Word for the New Year
#45 - THIS WEEK - A Review of Previous Challenges

Friday, January 1, 2016

HHMRH Top 10 Posts from 2015

Starting at #10 (without including Reviews or Giveaways), here are the "He Holds My Right Hand" Top 10 Posts of 2015:
Runner-up Posts That Were Very Close to Making This List:

Happy New Year, everyone! Thanks for reading!

NOTE: This Sunday, January 3rd, will be the FINAL regularly scheduled weekly "Encouragement Challenge." Keep watching for more information about what I will be sharing with you in 2016.