Tag Archives: Christmas

This is How Christmas Can be the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

25 Dec

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

Reblogged December 25, 2021

December 24, 2021

Our Christmas dinner adventure ended up with an unpleasant episode. I sat on the passenger’s seat and my friend drove the car through busy, narrow Orlando streets in downtown.

Our chatter must have been a bit distracting. Suddenly she gasped. “Oh no!”

Inadvertently, she entered the wrong way into a one-way street. She tried to mask her panic. “What do I do?”

Seconds later, a police officer who patrolled the area motioned to pull over. His deep voice came in from the driver’s window. “Your driver’s license.”

He walked back to his car. And when he came back, he scribbled on the ticket and pressed it in her hand.

Embarrassed? Distraught? Angry at herself? Yup. All of the above.

We do the same.

Most of us do the same at one time or another. When navigating through the streets of life, sometimes we take the wrong turn. Dressed in Christmas red and green, we head the wrong way. We do if we embrace the notion that the reason this is the most wonderful time of the year is because of the gifts, decorated trees, lights, social gatherings, or eating till we can’t move.

That’s not what makes this time wonderful. What makes it miraculously beautiful is the map God traced for our destiny.

Jesus’ birth wasn’t just an event, but it marked the beginning of that destiny. With His birth, a new faith was born. Through Him, we now have the faith that speaks evil into submission. The faith that tells circumstances they don’t dictate our path. The faith that lifts gloom in dark times. The faith that declares no force can stand against us. And the faith that will bring down walls and demolish opposition.

Victorious because we now drive down the street of faith where each season becomes the most wonderful time of the year. We decorate our life with brand new hope. We put up the tree of strength to face setbacks. We shop for opportunities to encourage others We wrap the gift of forgiveness and hand it to those who wronged us.

That can be you—the brand new you who’s born this Christmas. While the rest of the world focuses on what is seen, you concentrate on what’s not seen. You gaze at He who was born to give you what will make you strong. What will give you confidence. What will bring security. And what will end the loneliness.

Even if your path should turn crooked with restlessness, tension or sleepless nights, you have the answer, you have the way out and the only path… “All you do is trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6).

In that straight path of life, we find the peace we long for. The rest we need. The thoughts that are calm and the heart that sings joy.

Let’s Pray

Father, this Christmas will be wonderful as I thank You for saving me from wrong thinking, from wrong focus and wrong paths lined with superficial notions and worldly values. I praise You for the straight path that leads me to the beautiful destination You prepared for me. In Jesus’ name.

What is the path your life is taking you this Christmas?

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.

Let’s connect:

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

Find Him

23 Dec

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

I have the best blog partners. Without fail they create a blog every week. Since our road trip in October, I have struggled to put words on paper. Life happens-sometimes frustrating, often very good. Both seem to derail me.

Last week we closed up our home in Western North Carolina and drove to Florida to celebrate Christmas with our daughter and spend the winter. The change from cold nights and chilly days to sunshine and T-shirts was dramatic.

Our town in North Carolina is seriously into decorating and celebrating. People gather downtown for the tree lighting, free carriage rides and of course, hot chocolate. It could be a Hallmark movie. The evening was cold and we had to park several blocks away but I am so glad we went. After the isolation and division of Covid, it was heart stirring to see family and friends laughing and enjoying each other.

The residents deck themselves out in festive wear as well. I brought two short sleeve Christmas T shirts with me to Florida and have enjoyed wearing them but was surprised to observe few people sporting holiday cheer. I understand. When we lived in Florida full time, I found it hard to feel Christmas-y while sweating. As I write this we are having a brief cool front with low temperatures in the upper 40s. I am savoring every moment of it. I think the high for Christmas Day will be in the mid 70s followed by 80s the rest of the week.

My daughter and I began a baking frenzy yesterday. What joy to spend time working together to create delightful treats for Christmas Eve. We follow the Keto lifestyle eating which means making most everything from scratch, but it is so worth it. My husband popped into the kitchen periodically to volunteer his taste testing abilities. What a sacrifice as his back is messed up and he is using a walker. Haha!

Even with life’s challenges, we are so blessed. This month, God restored 2 broken family relationships. One I had been praying over for 20 years. Our hearts rejoiced. The father of the Prodigal son in the Bible killed a fattened calf when his son returned home. We didn’t have a calf on hand, but we did pick up some pizza to celebrate.

This verse was in my morning reading earlier in the week.

As for you, my son Solomon, know the God of your father, and serve Him wholeheartedly and with a willing mind; for the Lord searches all hearts, and understands every intent of the thoughts. If you seek Him, He will let you find Him;

1 Chronicles 28:9

Our broken hearts led us to seek Him with all of our hearts and minds. He not only let us find Him, he sustained us.

Do you follow The Chosen a crowd funded story about Jesus and the disciples? This Christmas they aired a wonderful Christmas special. It debuted in theaters but we watched it on You Tube. If you haven’t watched, you can watch it from here. https://youtu.be/5QeZnmCEeto

We wish you all a joyful Christmas.

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  

My 2021 goal is continue 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.

Are You Missing This Main Ingredient This Christmas

11 Dec

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

Reblogged 12/11/21 December 10, 2021

December 10, 2021

Last week, hubby and I stood at the customer service line at our local grocery store to return a jar of Vegenaise. OOPS, we had failed to notice it contained soy. As we waited, we observed our line was short compared to the one beside us.

Those in that line wore huge grins as they carried their hope to the counter. They hoped the number they chose would make them lottery winners.

Could it be they secretly hoped it would make them free and happy?

No criticism here.

I was just like them. Although I never once purchased a lottery ticket, I did put hope in things of this world. I hoped my accomplishments would please God. I hoped my performance would gain His favor. And I hoped what I did would lift me up one notch in the well-done-good-and faithful-servant ranking.

We all do that sometimes. We try and try. With the most honorable intentions, we really do. And in the same way heavy ornaments bend the Christmas tree branch, our endless tasks weigh heavy till we begin to droop, too.

At the end of the day, exhausted and frayed, we drag ourselves to bed. We may not realize that God is aware. He possibly peeks through the window of our heart. He sees the reason for our exhaustion—the constant dashes to put up decorations, to place lights everywhere, to grab the best recipe for pumpkin pie, and to wrap those gifts with green and red shiny paper.

Nothing wrong with that, unless we hope that busyness will fill that for which our heart, mind and soul desperately longs.

Could it be that’s the reason folks all over still live in gloom? They serve misplaced hope at every meal. Emptiness becomes their painful companion And, no jingle bells play for those who hope in the Christmas glitter.

Hope Abounds

BUT…. “But 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).

We hope in the Christ of Christmas. That’s why we’ll never faint. We’ll never grow weary. We stand in line with a heart overflowing with hope, hope in God alone. That’s when we receive more than we expect, more abundance than any lottery, and more riches than our heart can hold.

And with hope firmly planted in the God of the universe, we walk away with armfuls of reassurance. Confident and secure, we join the Christmas choir that sings: the eyes of the Lord are upon me. I fear the Lord so I trust in His unfailing love (Psalm 33:18 paraphrased).

Once the Christmas tree is put away, the decorations are back in their boxes and leftovers are in the fridge, our only hope still turns to His unfailing love. Our hope increases in His promise that tomorrow is already planned for us. In the hope that our future is safe and guarded by His protection.

True celebration sparks when we open the gift of hope wrapped in His love. We find it overflowing with comfort for lonely moments. Satisfaction for our emptiness. And food for our hungry soul.

Let’s Pray

Father, as seasons come and go, I thank You for Your gift of hope that shines every day, increases every year, and always sustains me. In Jesus’ name.

Where will you place your hope this Christmas?

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.

Let’s connect:

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

6 promises when you’re feeling overwhelmed

12 Dec

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

Reblogged December 12, 2020

December 11, 2020

“Enough already.” Have you thought or said those words lately? Most of us have drawn dangerously close to that overwhelmed state because we’re saturated by the ugliness that paints the country and the world.

Anyone out there ready for a break from all this? Let’s change that mood and find a lighter topic. Here’s my friend’s lighthearted recount to give you a little humor in the midst of the gloom. She stepped into her mother-in-law’s house with a heart filled with the Christmas spirit and with an attitude of kindness. But here’s what she experienced. This is her unedited recount:

This humongous undertaking was under the guise of “helping” (really, read: doing it ALL myself). Put up ALL of her Christmas decorations: 2 full-size trees; a gazillion Santa’s she’s collected over the past 30-plus years of all shapes of sizes; 19 ceramic Christmas teapots (I counted); a dozen Beyer’s carolers, about 500 feet of lighted-green-fake-garland oh-so carefully placed around just about every piece of tall furniture, upper kitchen cabinets, fireplace mantle, even her grandfather clock. (I kid you not!) I could just feel the kilowatt numbers on the electric meter start spinning around like there’s no tomorrow!

Oh, I’m not even finished yet…THEN there was the placement of about 50 battery-operated assorted pillar, votive, and tea-lights on every table, the mantle again (it’s totally jammed between pillars, wise men and carolers), and inside the fireplace—don’t want to actually make a real fire these days, do we now?

I even had to place giant ball ornaments and stuffed-cardinals in ornamental trees (not even Christmas trees) around the house. Oh, yeah, I forget about placing her cutesy Christmas rugs all over the house, too! And my piece de resistance was converting a red, green, and white tablecloth into a shower curtain, using safety pins, so it matched her bathroom accessories.

Here’s a challenge for us. How about if we decorate with the same passion and detail, not our home, but our heart?

Six Promises for You

To avoid reaching the overwhelmed state of our mind, we first check out the divine storehouse of God’s Word. And one by one we pull out His promises. Here are six that deserve an important place:

  1. When broken relationships, strife or animosity bury our peace under the mountain of stress. Wrapped in love, Jesus gives us the perfect present: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to your peace]as the world gives” (John 14:27). The peace that comes when things work out is fleeting. The peace we get from others is false.  But Jesus’ peace when turmoil abounds is true, profound and permanent.
  2. When fear drains our strength, God says, “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10). If He will uphold us, nothing can make us fall. If He is God, the Lord of all, what may happen doesn’t alter His promise. If He is indeed the Most High God, what changes come about will find us secure and confident in His protection.
  3. When media reports rob our sleep as we toss and turn at night, each new day rings in fresh hope and with holy boldness. We declare, “In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly” (Psalm 5:3). We wait expecting His plans to be at work. We expect His truth to reign. And His Word never to return empty.
  4. When tension fills the air because of the uncertainty for tomorrow, we remember God is already present in all our tomorrows. “Therefore, do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. For this moment, for today and for tomorrow, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6). Walking on that straight path, firm and secure keeps us from the detours of negative emotions.
  5. When income has dwindled, bills pile up and we join the “financially anxious” club, God’s voice is stern: “Consider how the lilies grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith! And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well” (Luke 12:27-31). Anxiety rises only and only when we forget that God knows. He knows what we need, what we lack, what we miss and what we desire. Our “wants” may come last, but our needs are what He meets first. The secret to get them? Seek Him first above all.
  6. If what we face seems impossible. If what we tried got us nowhere. And even what others did for us brought no results, God’s reminder echoes in Matthew 19:26 “Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” That promise brings the glow of hope into our Christmas. The best present to give to yourself is to believe, truly believe that If all things are possible with God,” your situation is too.

But we know none of the promises can be ours. None can be at work. None can make any sense without the power of God expressed by His unending love. He put that love in a crib and named Him Jesus.

Because of Jesus, we’re not overwhelmed. We embrace His Word, believe His power and decorate our life with the color of His promises.

Let’s Pray

Father, this Christmas is different than others. Gloom seems to rule. But we know that Jesus was born, to grow up, to become the light, to bring salvation and to conquer all. We sing the Christmas carol of gratitude with new hope and new confidence. In Jesus’ name.

What decorates your life these days?

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 shareFeel 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

Savor the Season

20 Dec

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

Wow, we have been in Florida for one week and I am feeling a bit exhausted. The 11 hour drive from the NC mountains last Wednesday left my husband and I with “road trip lag.” Thursday started off early with a much needed hair trim. It seems to take a couple of days for me to settle into my Florida groove buying groceries and putting away my must haves that I brought from NC.

Saturday we visited EPCOT at Walt Disney World to experience Candlelight with Gary Sinise narrating. The show is free but getting a seat involves standing in line for a couple of hours on the chance of getting in. We are too old for that these days! Earlier in the year we purchased a dinner package that would give us priority seating . It is expensive, but it’s our Christmas thing. We chose to dine in Morocco’s Marrakesh restaurant. We ate there once before and were pleasantly surprised with the flavorful food. The restaurant itself is beautiful with mosaic tile throughout.

I am uncomfortable taking pictures in a restaurant and invading diners privacy. I shot this one over the head of the couple next to us. In the center section a dancer performed to beautiful music played on a keyboard.

After our meal we visited a favorite store in the UK, Twining’s tea. We stocked up on the flavors we can’t find in our local grocery stores. To my surprise, the park was quite crowded, but it was a Saturday. After exploring shops in Japan and France we made our way to The American Adventure and were fortunate to find an empty picnic table to rest while we waited for our time to enter the amphitheater. I loved the Christmas tree and people were lined up to have pictures taken with Mr. and Mrs. Claus.

The music was magnificent, Gary Sinise as narrator superb. As the sun went down, the evening turned brisk. An absolutely perfect evening… but boy were we tired. Thankfully our daughter volunteered to drive home.

Do you ever have weeks where you know you were busy, but it’s all a blur? That is how this week has been. I haven’t wrapped a single Christmas gift or planned our Christmas meal. On the plus side, I have made muffins and strawberry ice cream!

My friends, as we prepare to celebrate this joyful holiday let’s remember to savor the season…time spent with family, cherishing memories and most of all celebrating the birth of the Savior.

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.

Joyful Christmas

25 Dec

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

 

And the angel said unto them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people- Luke 2:10

 

 

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Finding joy has been my journey in 2018. I could not have followed this journey without the wonderful counselor, whispering courage and truth into my heart.

On behalf of my faithful friends, the blogging team of Old Things R New, we wishes each of our readers and friends a joyful and blessed Christmas.

His Name Will Be Called

18 Dec

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

 

For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government will be upon His shoulder. 

 

 

These words never fail to thrill my soul. After reading them this morning my heart hungered for music to celebrate the Savior’s birth.  The music of Disney’s Candlelight Procession is one of my favorites. Often the choir is made up of high school students who practice during the year for this big event. Of late, I have begun to pray that this glorious good news will be planted into their hearts. The celebrity narrator for this one is Chris Pratt. I have to confess, I don’t know anything about his acting career.

 

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

17 Dec

My Take
DiVoran Lites

 

 

 

We hardly ever have snow here in Florida,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

But we do have mistletoe growing wild in our woods.

We don’t ski here, except for water-skiing on nice days.

We do have lots of citizens wearing themselves out

Decorating, cooking, visiting, shopping in stores and online.

Trying to “get ready.”

 

I wonder what your favorite thing is about Christmas.

Is it the music, the decorations, the food, or

Perhaps the get-togethers and visits?

We have a small family and of course the

Best earthly treasure is our time together.

I like the music next.

I put a Christmas station on Pandora and

Play it all day, every day until Bill is ready to hear

Something else.

 

No matter how we feel about the holiday itself,

We can never forget the young pregnant woman

Who bore the son of God

And dear Joseph the carpenter who helped

Rear Him.

But most of all,

Christ came to earth and spent his life

Reaching out and he spent his death atoning for sin.

We are charged to invite the Holy Spirit to bless others

Through us,so they may know Him and His Father.

We are invited to receive healing for our bodies

Our emotions, and our souls

Good cheer is available all year round

When each day includes relationship

With Jesus-Redeemer.

 

Author, Poet and Artist

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

A 1960 California Family Christmas

25 Mar

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

 

 

I know….I know….Christmas was either three months ago – or nine months to come. So I am either WAY late or WAY early with this post! However, in going through my pictures recently – something I really enjoy doing – I came upon the Christmas before Fred and I married, and it was in California with my parents and Bill and DiVoran.

We stayed with Bill and DiVoran in their tiny little house, so it was cramped spaces, but sometimes that can be the most fun, right?

 

 

In any case, we drove from Albuquerque, New Mexico early that morning, and drove straight through to Inglewood, California. It was a long drive, but there were four drivers, so it wasn’t too bad. We drove in Fred’s car – that lovely, classic 1957 Chevy Bel Air.

 

It was a dream to drive and to ride in. And with the four of us in the car together – Mom, Dad, Fred and me – we had a great time together. I remember starting out that there was frost on the windows. It didn’t take long before the sunshine on the car melted the frost, even though it was so cold outside.

Because Bill and DiVoran’s house was small, DiVoran made the best use of the space, knowing we would really crowd the place. There was no room for a Christmas tree, so she made one out of a tinsel garland, tacked on one wall.

 

 

She placed ornaments on the “tree” and a star at the top. They had a credenza underneath it where we placed our Christmas gifts. It was quite unique and imaginative. She’s so creative, and it shows in the paintings she does, as well.

I remember them setting up a cot for Fred to sleep on.

 

Bill and DiVoran sitting on Fred’s cot

 

There was a couch that I suspect folded down to make a bed, where my parents slept.

 

 

I have absolutely NO memory of where I slept, but perhaps there was another cot somewhere in that room that was my spot for sleeping. Perhaps they put me in the kitchen? It was a one-bedroom little house, and Bill and DiVoran slept in their bed. It was quite cozy!

We had some plans for things to do while there. I know we went to Disneyland one day.

 

 

 

We went to Marineland.

 

 

To Knott’s Berry Farm.

 

We kept busy, and made the most of our trip.

When Christmas Day arrived, we had a great meal together. And it was made even better because DiVoran’s parents came and joined us at the table. My mom and dad ate from TV trays, but that didn’t lessen the fun. It was just a great time together.

It just goes to show that you don’t have to have a lot of space, or expensive tastes, to have a wonderful family time together. And that’s the key – time together. That’s what makes family. We are blessed.

 

I WAS BORN FOR THIS TIME

25 Dec

We are happy to welcome our guest blogger, Patricia Franklin to share a heartwarming story for this blessed Christmas day.

 

A Few Thoughts

Patricia Franklin

 

 

 

This is the story of “Belle,” our fearless leader at the crisis center, who always begins the day with prayer time. She began this day, shortly before Christmas, by emotionally saying “I was Born For This Time,” and I need to tell you my story. She begins….

“In the Bible, the story of Esther relates, ‘I was born for this time’.” ….

Belle’s youngest child was 9 months old, when she became quite ill. She went to the doctor, and subsequently other doctors, who found something in her lung. After many tests and many doctors, the diagnosis turned out to be a fatal lung disease.  It was progressing rapidly and there was no cure for her. The doctors said, “We can try medicines and treatments to make you more comfortable, but it will continue to progress into the liver and kidneys and will be fatal.”

She decided against treatments and told her doctor. “No doctor, I have my own way of healing.” She went home and continually prayed… “God, please give me 15 years to raise my son.” So she carried on the best she could, and at the advice of her doctor, she continued to see him for x-rays and prognosis of her condition, but received no medicines or treatments, and continually prayed her prayer to God.

One morning she woke up deathly ill and went to see her doctor, thinking her time was up. He took his time and gave her a thorough examination.  When he was finished he said, “Belle, do you believe in miracles?” She told him, “YES, DOCTOR, I DO.”  He said, “There is no sign of the disease in your body.  You have been healed!”

So she raised her family, and along the way, served in her church and community. Then, with her sister and many volunteers, took over running this faith-based crisis center. 37 years later, although her younger sister passed away from cancer, Belle is still going strong. She very humbly said, “There is a reason God wanted me here for this time. Just like Esther, I was born for this time.”

Yes, the center continues to grow, as the need is greater all the time. We are now serving at least twice as many needy people as we were a few years ago.  I heard Belle say after the prayer meeting, that she had just come from the hospital where she had visited one of our volunteers.  And although, she did not say it, she is known to visit the homeless camps, and help as many people as many ways as she can along the way, with her quiet, competent manner. Yes, Belle, like Esther, you were born for this time. We could not proceed or succeed without you and your wonderful compassionate and caring leadership.

 

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