Archive by Author

How Does God Know My Fears?

12 Oct

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

Reblogged October 12, 2019

“I can’t remember anything lately,” my friend said. “I think I’m losing my mind.”

Have you ever said that? Sometimes I’m tempted to think that getting older is a good excuse for all that begins to fail.

But the good news is that no matter how many years go by, there’s something that never fails, never loses its power or diminishes its impact; and that’s God’s promise that He knows you and me inside and out.

He knows you’re reading this. He’s aware of your thoughts, He observes your anxious moments and your days of sorrow.

God explains it here.

YOUR NAME

“Quite a thought isn’t it? Your name on God’s hand. Your name on God’s lips. Maybe you’ve seen your name in some special places. On an award or diploma…or maybe you’ve heard your name from some important people—a coach, a celebrity, a teacher. But to think that your name is on God’s hand and on God’s lips…my, could it be?” (Max Lucado)

I know you by name. “See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands” (Isaiah 49:16). You are that precious to Me. I care about every detail of your life. Start today by reading My Word: “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you” (Isaiah 43:1-2).

I see your tears. I know your thoughts. I have not forgotten your requests. When you call out My name, I am always available. “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me” (John 10:27).

I know your name. You are not a number to Me, or a symbol, or someone lost among all the other people in this world. You belong to Me, and I know your name. Because we have such an intimate relationship, I will give you hidden treasures, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, who summons you by name” (Isaiah 45:3).

(The above section entitled YOUR NAME is an excerpt from Carol Kent’s release, “He Holds My Hand.”

Let’s Pray

Father, in my moments of heartache, I know You hold my hand and in Your hand is my name engraved. Thank You for knowing me so personally and intimately. You know my deepest secrets and my constant worry and each longing. Thank You for knowing how to resolve it all. In Jesus’ name.

How will your outlook change, knowing God is aware of every detail?

Janet

______________________________________

Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

Looking for a speaker for your upcoming event? A great speaker makes the difference between a so-so event and one that shines with impact. I invite you to view one of my two-minute videos HERE.

Please share: Feel free to share Janet’s posts with your friends.

Janet Eckles Perez

Some say she should be the last person to be dancing. Her life is summarized in this 3-minute video: http://bit.ly/1a8wGJR

Janet Perez Eckles’ story of triumph is marked by her work as an international speaker, #1 best-selling author, radio host, personal success coach and master interpreter. Although blind since 31, her passion is to help you see the best of life.

www.janetperezeckles.com

Seeking Peace-When I Fail

11 Oct

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

Friday was a bad day. I had no joy because I didn’t seek it. Instead, I allowed physical discomfort and life’s aggravations to consume me.

 Saturday morning I awoke with the previous day’s darkness hovering. I poured my coffee, grabbed my tablet and sought the sanctuary of the porch.

The Saturday devotional reading was choosing to live in joy.  Oh how I had failed to make that choice! With remorse I confessed my failure to God. I could have made excuses but God already knew my thoughts.

 As I waited quietly before God for my heart and mind to heal, I heard an extra loud flutter of a bird landing on the feeder. As I looked up, not 50 feet from the feeder, standing on the side of the hill was a beautiful doe. We gazed at each other for several seconds before she turned and disappeared into the woods. 

 I returned to reading the devotional. I had read the author’s thoughts and moved on to read the first of three scriptures.  

Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights. 

—Habakkuk 3:17–19

…”He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to go to the heights.”

He sees me and knows my weaknesses and yet he will enable me to go to the heights!

Love: Because I know I am loved by my Father, I can confidently confess my failings.

Joy: I don’t have to chase joy, but I do have to choose joy especially on difficult days.

Peace: When I choose to accept forgiveness Peace flows.

This is my favorite scripture photo this week. The picture is sunrise on Clingman’s Dome, GSMNP, taken from the webcam.

The Secret to Live a Happy Life

5 Oct

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

Reblogged October 5 2019

October 4, 2019

Looking for happiness in the wrong places?

The answer is in this true story that comes from Lou Vickery’s book, Reach Beyond: How to Jump Over Hurdles and Land on Success.

Peter Nondemand is the kind of person who makes many people feel uncomfortable. You see, he is always upbeat and positive. His optimistic thinking has led to optimistic outcomes.

Study after study shows optimistic people have more energy…make better decisions…are more productive…are less stressed…are happier…live healthier…and live longer than their pessimistic counterparts.

These describe Peter.

Even around the office, Peter is a noted encourager. He is rarely critical, focusing on cheering others to perform better. He makes every effort to demonstrate what it means to be a positive thinker and what it takes to maintain an optimistic mindset.

On April 11, 2004, Peter was put to a test. He was involved in a terrible automobile accident where three people lost their lives.

Many broken bones and severe internal bleeding threatened his life. As medics struggled to remove him from the wreckage, rather than lament, Peter encouraged them as they went about their duties.

Soon the ambulance was at the hospital. As the medics rushed him into the emergency room, still aware of his surroundings, Peter displayed his optimistic self.

But while the doctors attended to his wounds, Peter noticed a worried look on the face of one of the nurses. He suspected that his condition was not good…her look confirmed it.

Before he was put to sleep for life-saving surgery, these were Peter’s last words, “Treat me like I’m going to live, not die.”

Peter lived. And went forward with his life being his very optimistic self.

Note from Janet

Can we all be like Peter? Optimism is tough when, let’s be real, life stinks sometimes. How can we help but complain?

Sometimes we curse and, in our mind, and with our words, over and over again, repeat the negative details, being somewhat reckless with our tongue. But God says, “Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing” (Proverbs 12:18).

Peter chose his own healing even before his accident by his ability to choose. He had the same choices you and I have—the choice to see the worst, or find the best. The choice to complain, or to comment on the good. The option to sink into the problem, or step into God’s promise.

Peter’s choice for optimism took him to see good things, making this verse come alive: “From the fruit of his lips a man is filled with good things as surely as the work of his hands rewards him” (Proverbs 12:19).

Peter chose life even before his accident. He chose to live with edifying words, thoughts and attitude. We can too because “The tongue has the power of life and death,” (Proverbs 18:21). We have the power to invite happiness or sadness.  A happy life is not one that’s filled with positive things, but one that’s empty of negativity.

Let’s Pray

Father, thank You for granting me the wisdom to choose words that edify, encourage and praise You in all circumstances. In Jesus’ name.

When facing adverse situations, what words come from your lips?

Janet

______________________________________

Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

Looking for a speaker for your upcoming event? A great speaker makes the difference between a so-so event and one that shines with impact. I invite you to view one of my two-minute videos HERE.

Please share: Feel free to share Janet’s posts with your friends.

Janet Eckles Perez

Some say she should be the last person to be dancing. Her life is summarized in this 3-minute video: http://bit.ly/1a8wGJR

Janet Perez Eckles’ story of triumph is marked by her work as an international speaker, #1 best-selling author, radio host, personal success coach and master interpreter. Although blind since 31, her passion is to help you see the best of life.

www.janetperezeckles.com

Waiting…

3 Oct

Yesterday was a long…. day! My husband had two doctor appointment two hours from our home. I am thankful we were able to schedule both on the same day. 

We both slept in this morning but I didn’t miss my porch quiet time. Before I sette in the chaise lounge a Hummingbird flew to the feeder. She took a tiny sip then flew up close and hovered as if to say, fill up the feeder! The nectar and seed feeders were both empty! Cooler weather is coming so the birds must be stocking up.

My husband took this photo several years ago using a tripod and remote trigger.

To my surprise the Hummingbird zipped over to the garden area and began extracting nectar from the blooms on a Basil plant. Somehow she managed to pull the bloom off yet hold on to it longer to drink. She then moved on to the blooms on my huge Coleus plant. I wish I could have snapped a photo while she was drinking.

Waiting to hear from the doctor with test results is trying my patience. The practice has a patient portal and I have been haunting it all morning. We have been praying for the doctors to have wisdom in finding the source of my husband’s heath issues, but I’m not handling the waiting well. If my mom were still alive she would tilt her head and look me in the eye and ask..”what do you have a Lord for?” 

Can Facebook Figure Me Out-Not Yet!

1 Oct

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

Last week I began my revenge campaign against Facebook’s algorithm tyranny. I spent time each day hiding the sponsored ads that are the lifeblood of their income stream

I have to give Facebook credit, it really scrambled to figure out what I would click on. Here are some of the most frequent ads:

  • Fertility clinic- 45 years too late
  • Allergy testing- Interesting pairing with fertility!
  • Water Park- Really?
  • Various health products
  • EBike- What the heck is EBike?
  • Corelle Ware- Tempting
  • Religious posts

Even though the religious posts don’t always reflect my values, I have decided to stop hiding these ads. For the most part the headlines are positive and encouraging and with the partisan anger on social media, I need the positive.

I would like to report that the volume of ads has decreased but I think they may have increased! I will report back on this week’s Facebook attempts to lure me into clicking an ad.

On a positive note, I am enjoying the National Park webcams. They are updated every 15 minutes plus they archive the images. Here is the LINK if you would like to enjoy them too. Currently, Glacier National Park has experienced an early season blizzard!

I’m not positive, but I think this is the Visitor Information Center.

The Bible Lens app makes adding scripture to photos practically effortless and i am enjoying combining the webcam photos with God’s word!

Sequoia & Kings Canyon NP

I Love Apps

26 Sep

I create scripture posts for our church Facebook page. I find verses during my morning quiet time and save them to Notes with the date. Then when I need to upload a verse, I have a collection to draw from. I also enjoy pairing the verse with photos and backgrounds.

My go to app of the moment is Adobe Spark Post, but I have been experimenting with The Bible app this week and like it quite a lot. It doesn’t give me as much creative control, but the plus side is the program will offer up two or more layouts of the same verse. This gives me the opportunity to share the same verse on different platforms without appearing to be repetitive.

Here are two examples, strikingly different in appearance so it can be tailored to each audience.

My heart has been sore this week and I am thankful for the programs and apps that give me an outlet to express my emotions.

I would enjoy hearing from you about programs and apps that you use. I need simple and free!

I'm a winner

After my retirement, I decided to re-learn the canning and preserving skills I learned from my mother but hadn’t practiced for twenty years. I titled the blog Old Things R New to chronicle my experience. Since then I have been blessed to have six other bloggers join me, DiVoran Lites, Bill Lites, Judy Wills, Louise Gibson, Janet Perez Eckles and Melody Hendrix

In addition to blogging, I work as the publicist/marketer/ amateur editor and general “mom Friday” for my author daughter, Rebekah Lyn. I also manage her website, Rebekah Lyn Books where we frequently host the best in up and coming authors.

My 2019 goal is to use my love of photographs and words to be an encourager on social media. You can visit Real Life Books and Media You Tube Channel if you would like to view some of the mini-videos I have created for our church, Gateway Community in Titusville, Fl.

Can Facebook Figure Me Out?

24 Sep

I think I am going to start a Tuesday post titled “Can Facebook Figure Me Out”?

Like many people I am frustrated with the social media giant. It was annoying that Facebook decided which of my family and friends posts I would see based on how popular their post were. It’s like being in middle school and trying to be the popular girl. If a post does not get multiple comments and likes, it gets buried. To make matters worse, they now want FB to be a “happy place.” Their algorithm rate posts based on comments, loves and wows. Gifs push it even further up the happiness poll. If you click like, sad or mad, that is the kiss of death.

Image by OpenIcons from Pixabay

A couple of weeks ago I mounted my personal protest by hiding ads in my news feed. Facebook needs money and that money comes from ads. At first I clicked hide out of a sense of defiance, defund the FB control freaks! After two weeks, I have made it a game and quite enjoy it.

The Facebook algorithm, henceforth to be called “It”, is determined to figure out which ads I will click. After barraging me with a wide range of ads, It settled into religious ones, obviously noting that I share scripture graphics on my timeline. I hide them all, finally It must have decided I am Catholic and suggested a book about praying with prayer beads.

So far this week the ads have gone from luxury cars, bras, fertility and life insurance. I wonder if in some weird way It thinks they go together.

Next week I will share Its choices for me. Do you think It will finally give up? Is it possible to exhaust an algorithm?

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

If you want to feel violated, go to settings, ads, Your ad preferences, Advertisers and Businesses. There you will read this:

How Lists Containing Your Information Are Uploaded

  • These advertisers have run an ad in the past seven days using a list uploaded to Facebook containing your information, typically an email address or a phone number.
  • Facebook matched the uploaded information to your profile, without revealing your identity to the advertiser.

Now you know why you get so much spam email. You are welcome.

Stop by next week and share your ads story!

How God removes our insecurities.

21 Sep

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

Reblogged September 21, 2019

I sat in the passenger’s seat as my friend and I headed to the mall. “Freedom,” she said, “kids in school, finally a little peace.”

I knew what she meant. As a blind mom of three little active boys, my job changed during the fall. No more summer days sprinkled with, I’m-bored-Mom moments.

Had I made a difference?

Decades flew by and now looking back I wonder if there’s anything I had done in those days that made a difference, taught them something worthwhile or left memories in their hearts.

Looking at my sons, now with their own families, I asked, “Hey guys, do you remember the notes I used to tape to your pillows?”

“I think I might still have some of them, mom,” my oldest son said.

“I remember the notes you’d put in our lunch boxes,” my middle son said. “I almost ate one of them by accident.”

I grinned. But secretly, I hoped they erased memories of moments when their Mom wasn’t so nice. Sometimes, I threw my hands up in the air and, in utter frustration, I ordered. “Okay, the three of you, in your room, and don’t come out until you know how to behave.”

It was nothing extraordinary.

But even in those days of discipline, God prompted me to spend a few seconds jotting simple words on a piece of paper. I stuffed them in their lunch boxes or taped them to their pillow.

Nothing extraordinary in that gesture. Only a simple way for them to know they were loved no matter where they were.

Although my love was genuine, my job as a mom seemed overwhelming at times. I questioned my abilities, doubted my decisions and feared my inadequacies to do enough for them.

But in that season of my insecurities, God was busy watching, listening and with the pen of His love, He was writing notes to me. The note in Psalm 23 was written to carry me through my days.

God reminded me:

He was my shepherd, I lacked nothing to make me the Mom He wanted me to be.

As I sent my three little guys to school, God made me lie down in the green pastures of reassurance that they would be safe from all harm.

He led me beside the quiet waters of peace knowing His hand covered them. Drained after a long day of chores—of cooking, cleaning the kitchen, folding laundry and picking up toys, He restored my soul.

And when I wondered on the path of worry, He guided me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

When tragedies, conflict and violence filled the news, the shadow of gloom came over me. But though I was tempted to walk in the shadow of worry, I declared I would fear no evil for God would be with me and my children. His rod and His staff would comfort me.

And while preparing meals for the family, God reminded me that He prepared a table before me in the presence of my enemies called worry, doubt, anxiety or guilt.

God anointed my sons’ heads with the oil of purity and faith; Their cup would overflow. Surely goodness and love would follow me and my children all the days of our lives and we would dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

God’s note left on the pillow of our hearts carries the truth of His Word, the strength of His promise, and the guarantee they will come to be.

Let’s Pray

Father, thank you for lifting from my heart feelings of guilt, insecurity and blame. I praise You for filling my days with peace, reassurance and trust in Your promises. In Jesus’ name, amen.

What are God’s notes telling you today?

Janet

______________________________________

Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

Looking for a speaker for your upcoming event? A great speaker makes the difference between a so-so event and one that shines with impact. I invite you to view one of my two-minute videos HERE.

Please share: Feel free to share Janet’s posts with your friends.

Janet Eckles Perez

Some say she should be the last person to be dancing. Her life is summarized in this 3-minute video: http://bit.ly/1a8wGJR

Janet Perez Eckles’ story of triumph is marked by her work as an international speaker, #1 best-selling author, radio host, personal success coach and master interpreter. Although blind since 31, her passion is to help you see the best of life.

www.janetperezeckles.com

The Last Summer Blooms

19 Sep

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

With thankful hearts we loaded our truck last Thursday and headed back to the North Carolina mountains. The temperatures in the mountains were warm, but after the heat of Florida, it was delightful to sit on my porch again and enjoy the soft, morning air.

Yesterday a cool front pushed into the area and it is windows open weather! I will need a light blanket or jacket when I enjoy the porch tomorrow. My kind of weather!

I picked a few of summer’s last blooms yesterday. I will miss their bright welcome as the car comes up the driveway or when I open the blinds, first thing each morning but fall has it own colors.

Our Coleus plants have had a phenomenal summer. I don’t think I can recall ever having such lush growth! The Pink Splash I planted with it went crazy too. Our hanging basket that “winters’ in Florida has flourished. I think this winter will be its fourth. We had to move it to a larger pot and it is too heavy for me to lift. For the life of me, I can’t remember the name of the plant. I think it starts with a “d”. If you know what it is, let me know.

While we were in Florida the pansy flowers from last winter played out. I can’t believe they thrived through the summer. We planted mums for fall in our moose planter but I need some contrast. I am thinking of Dusty Miller.

Before leaving for Florida we set up a game camera not expecting much would be captured. To our delight, a doe and two babies visited to eat the grapes on my husband’s vines and top off the Hosta plants. I know that deer liked eating hosta, but this is the first time they have bothered ours. They are so cute, I don’t mind a bit.

Monday officially kicks off fall. Let the pumpkin fest begin! I have a decadent recipe for Keto Pumpkin Spice Muffins from the Keto Gatherings cookbook by Kristi Sullivan. (If you are eating Keto, I recommend this cookbook for holiday recipes.) that will be perfect served with pumpkin spice coffee made with heavy cream!

Full disclosure, I am an Amazon Affiliate and may receive a monetary benefit from your purchase.

I'm a winnerAfter my retirement, I decided to re-learn the canning and preserving skills I learned from my mother but hadn’t practiced for twenty years. I titled the blog Old Things R New to chronicle my experience.  Since then I have been blessed to have six other bloggers join me, DiVoran Lites, Bill Lites,  Judy Wills, Louise Gibson, Janet Perez Eckles and Melody Hendrix

In addition to blogging, I work as the publicist/marketer/ amateur editor and general  “mom Friday” for my author daughter, Rebekah Lyn. I also manage her website, Rebekah Lyn Books  where we frequently host the best in up and coming authors.

My 2019 goal is to use my love of photographs and words to be an encourager on social media. You can visit Real Life Books and Media You Tube Channel if you would like to view some of the mini-videos I have created for our church, Gateway Community in Titusville, Fl.

Lord, I’m About to Faint

14 Sep

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

Reblogged September 14, 2019

Photo Credit Image by John Hain from Pixabay

Feeling weak these days? We all do. We face those struggles. There’s so much on our plate, so much to resolve and so little strength to keep going.

I was there many times. And it began when in my freshman year of high school, while on that race track as I held the baton. But in my heart, I held anguish. Before me was the distance I’d have to run between the starting point and the next runner where I’d hand off the baton. In relay races, the distance is short. But for me, it ran the length of the world.

All eyes would be on me.

Dreadful thoughts would rumble like thunder—what if I should stumble, drop the baton, fall, or cause my team to lag far behind? All of these visions would torment me just before every race began.

Have you ever felt that way when one more stretch of life is before you and wonder if you’ll make it? All eyes are on you, observing your performance. Before you are on a journey, painfully foreign to you. Sweat pours out and you wonder if you’ll make it one more step.

That’s when God makes an announcement only for your ears to hear. “Let me run by your side!” And, with the firmness of His Word, He whispers confidence to begin the race. With His grace, He lifts your burden to lighten the load. With His promises, He cheers you on. Should you stumble with His mighty Hand, He’ll scoop you up. When anguish and pain sear and burn, His compassion will soothe calmness to your soul. And should fatigue run you dry; His grace will pour renewed hope. Should doubt flicker through, His lips will speak the reassurance to build your strength.

I wish I had known that…

I wish I’d known back then that, no matter how long the distance, how arduous the journey, how threatening the obstacles, my legs didn’t need to tremble. My heart didn’t need to race wildly. And I didn’t have to dread the races before me.

On the contrary, God was renewing my strength. He said, “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint” (Isaiah 40:31).

Here’s the catch. That promise is reserved for those who hope in the Lord. Victory comes, triumphant ending awaits, and the winning prize is ours. All that’s needed is to hope in Him, count on Him, and release the baton of our burdens to Him.

Do you think today is the day you’ll be handing God your baton?

Janet

______________________________________

Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

Looking for a speaker for your upcoming event? A great speaker makes the difference between a so-so event and one that shines with impact. I invite you to view one of my two-minute videos HERE.

Please share: Feel free to share Janet’s posts with your friends.

Janet Eckles Perez

Some say she should be the last person to be dancing. Her life is summarized in this 3-minute video: http://bit.ly/1a8wGJR

Janet Perez Eckles’ story of triumph is marked by her work as an international speaker, #1 best-selling author, radio host, personal success coach and master interpreter. Although blind since 31, her passion is to help you see the best of life.

www.janetperezeckles.com

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