When Times Get Tough…Remember Your Blessings…

As I look back over my life and all that God has allowed me to experience on this earth, I am grateful.  I am taking a couple of weeks off from thinking too much…a mental health break… and have decided to share some of my favorite photos with you instead.  As you view the various photos, reflect.  What kind of God could imagine all of these things and create them so beautifully for us to enjoy?  Our God, The One and Only, The Almighty, Creator of the Heavens and the Earth!  Praise Him for His wondrous works!

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Our back yard in the fall.
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We’re not at the zoo people! This is the real thing!
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My daughter cooling off with the kids in India.
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Touring England. God didn’t create these buildings of course, but they are still awesome for us to enjoy!
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A walkway in Florida through a nature perserve.
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You’ve got to love a random bug!
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Castles in England fascinate me!
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A cow in India.
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I got up early and went to Cades Cove to see a bear. All I saw was some deer. That’s OK with me!
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The morning sun has still not burnt the mist off the horizon.
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A momma and her calf in Florida.
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A bird in my backyard. Anyone know what kind it is?
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Take off!
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Views from our boat ride in India.
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Yes, that’s a real live herd of elephants!
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I’m intrigued by the old buildings in England.
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An Ohio frog being held by my braver than me, daughter-in-law! Frogs remind me to Fully Rely On God! Get it?
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Another view in my backyard.
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A couple of monkeys in India. This baby has ears only a mother could love!
A monkey on the streets in India.
My favorite picture of a monkey on the streets in India.
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A barren Mt. St. Helen.
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A view of mountains from the plane.
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India is so cool. Love this!
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We’re on our way to Gatlinburg in the spring.
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A double rainbow on the way to Mt. Hood.
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Florida beaches.
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Pigeon Forge in the fall. Lovely!
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Yep, they’re real. Swept up by the boat we were on in Oregon.
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Photos don’t even express the majesty in a sunset.
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Sunset in San Diego.
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Love a Florida sunset!
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Beautiful!
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I think this is a tea farm in India.
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Seattle Fish Market sells flowers!
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A couple of turkey buzzards in Florida.
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This looks like a love story. Don’t let them fool you. They were fighting for a space on the dock!
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Arf, Arf, Arf!
God's promise of a better tomorrow!
God’s promise of a better tomorrow!

Psalm 150:6  Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.  Praise the Lord.

Romans 1:20  For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—

have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

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God’s Timing is Always Perfect!

I apologize for the tardiness of my post today.  In the weeks ahead, I may be off schedule a little as we prepare for our move.  Thanks for hanging in there with me!

Well, we got through our inspections on the home we are buying this past weekend and we are still moving full-speed ahead.  Some people would have run when they saw what we saw, but feeling that God has led us to this point; if we are to be obedient we feel we cannot turn back now.  We’ve spent the last couple of years preparing and praying for God to sell our home and then give us the perfect home for us—whatever that might be.  We have had contracts on other homes or at least had our eye on others and the second we were ready to move forward on them, the process was stopped for one reason or another.

Jim and I had a big list of things we wanted in a home but every house up until this one has been lacking in one or two of the things on our list.  We were OK with that though realizing that short of building the perfect house for us, we were not very likely to find everything we wanted.  Keeping this in mind, if it only had a two car garage and not three, we were OK with that.  If the office wasn’t as big as liked, we would make due.  Or, if the location was OK, we could always renovate and make the new home be what we needed it to be.

When Jim and I were both single, we signed up for e-Harmony—an Internet dating site—to help us find the perfect mate.  That is where we actually met.  e-Harmony’s system matches individuals on 29 important qualities of their personality, beliefs, etc.  When you sign-up, you are to make a list of “Must Haves” and “Can’t Stands.”  Their computer supposedly uses your personality test along with those lists to match you up to the perfect person.  Before we met each other, we both dated others on that site and although we had a lot of things in common, they weren’t the perfect match for us.  Had we moved forward with those relationships, we would have been settling for less than what God actually had in store for us.

Well, it appears that the same is happening now in our home purchase.  We have begged God to speed up the process and help us move forward as we desperately wanted to at least get our living space on one floor in case I should begin having my breathing problems again that I was having last year.   Two things we weren’t willing to bend on were the size of our dining room or at least space in which to extend a table at holidays and Jim wanted a walk-in shower big enough that he wasn’t knocking his elbows as he bathed.  Just as the people we dated previously and may have settled for, there were also houses that we could’ve settled for and been OK.

However, I have learned over the years that God is Sovereign.  If I am willing to wait on His timing, He will give me the desires of my heart.   God has had a plan for the last two years for us and while we were getting to where we are today, our future house sat empty waiting on our arrival.  Others have tried to purchase it to no avail as God had a plan for the Kemptons to live there.  Just as Jim highly exceeded my expectations with my e-Harmony experiences, I suspect our new home will do the same.  It not only has a huge dining room for my entire family to sit in one room together at the holidays; but it also has Jim’s walk-in shower–one on the first floor and one in the basement!  Isn’t that how God is?  He doesn’t expect us to pray in faith and patiently wait for Him to answer only to give us something to settle for.  When God is involved and we are willing to wait on His timing and not ours, He blesses us beyond what our minds can conceive.

Does our new home have problems?  Yes.  When we turned the water on during the inspection, water came pouring out from many areas of the plumbing all over the house since it had been empty for the last two years.  However, I consider that a mere distraction from Satan.  In fact, at that point of discovery, we could have chosen to either stay focused on the problems or we could choose to stay focused on where God was at work in our lives.  Truth be known, those are easy fixes and once they are done, we will have a wonderful home.

Many of us pray and pray for something and when we get it, we think oh, it leaks, God couldn’t want this for us.  Or perhaps they think, this answer is too big or too nice.  I really don’t need that or deserve it.  But just as when our loved ones here on earth give us nice gifts, so does our heavenly Father.  In fact, it gives Him great joy when He does.  So if your spouse gave you a wonderful gift and you knew they had all the money in the world to give it to you, would you tell them to take it back?  I doubt it.  So why do we question God?  He wants to richly bless you in all areas of your life.  When have you told God, “I really don’t need that, or I had something much smaller in mind.”  Or when have you been willing to settle for second best because you felt unworthy or didn’t have the faith that God could give you everything on your must have list?

The Bible says, “If you have the faith of a mustard seed, you can move a mountain.”  Most of us will never understand that concept as we tend to depend more on ourselves than on God most of the time.  Our society tells us to be independent, just make it happen, and find one’s inner strength.  My experience has been that when I am more dependent on God, wait for His timing and pray for the Holy Spirit to be my strength in times of trouble, my socks are blessed right off my feet and I end up with way more than I ever imagined possible.

Yes, my house isn’t perfect.  In fact it is far from perfect with leaking plumbing and other things.  However, I know in my heart that God has put us in this place for this time so whatever lies ahead will be just fine.  I would much rather be in God’s will with the husband and home that He chose for me than to have settled for less and do it my way.

What have you been praying for lately?  Do you have the faith that believes that in God’s time, your prayer will be answered perfectly and according to His will?  Are you prepared for a long wait if need be?  We haven’t closed on the house yet and until we do, I don’t know what tomorrow brings.  However, if this is the gift God has planned for Jim and I, we are moving forward in faith that He will take care of the details.  I pray that whatever is on your mind and heart, God will give you the peace to wait on Him and the grace to accept the answers He gives when He does.

Matthew 17:20 So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.

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