My namesake

“How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” Romans 10:15

Growing up I did not like my name.  It was not a common name, and I felt like an odd duck among all the Jennys, Saras, Beths, Nicoles, Tiffanys, and Beckys that I grew up with.  It wasn’t until my mom told me why she named me Marilou that I started to think much differently.

In this short video Marilou McCully, along with the other surviving wives of the missionaries killed in Ecuador on January 8, 1956, recounted why she considered the mission field, the events leading up to the slaying of her husband, and how she responded to God’s plans.  I so appreciate her transparency and emotions, even 45 years later.  She knew God was faithful, but also wondered what the future held.

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=ycnKaZWyHcc

Marilou McCully has since past away, but I did have the opportunity to exchange letters with her when I was in my 20s.  She told me that she was pleased that I had her name, and added that several Auca children bore that name as well.  It made me giggle.

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QUOTE (Norma McCorvey) – Jan 22

I have a feeling most people know this, but in case there are a few that don’t, this is a wonderful example of forgiveness and redemption. Just think, if she did not understand the wholeness of forgiveness how completely crushing her past would be on her soul.

Take this to heart all who have had abortions, which includes myself.  God’s forgiveness is complete! – Marilou

A DEVOTED LIFE

norma“It was so hard for me to conceive that the Lord had forgiven me, especially after so many children had been killed. But He has forgiven me and restored me. And, gradually, I have learned to trust His Word more than my own feelings.”

“If God can forgive Norma McCorveyJane Roe—and her role in abortion, surely he can forgive you as well.”

~Norma McCorvey

In honor of Norma McCorvey, the Jane Roe in Roe vs Wade, who has found forgiveness in the loving arms of her Savior Jesus Christ.  The US Supreme Court handed down the Roe v. Wade decision, on this day in 1973.

Resources:
Roe vs. Wade: Abortion’s Religious Dimension
How a Christian Child’s Love Won Jane Roe’s Heart

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Posted in Abortion, Affliction, Child of God, Children, Christian, Decisions, Forgiveness, Freedom, God, Grace, Healing, Life, Redemption, Truth | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Book Report: Undaunted, by Josh McDowell with Cristobal Krusen

Yesterday I finished reading Josh McDowell’s autobiography.  It is another beautiful picture of God’s handiwork.  God masterfully grabbed hold of the loose and seemingly unusable threads of this man’s life that had been stained with the trauma, shame and bitterness arising from physical and sexual abuse, alcoholism, poverty, family dysfunction and more, and wove them into the beautiful tapestry that has become Josh’s life.

Although Josh McDowell is now in fulltime ministry, having reached out to millions of young people around the world since he started with Campus Crusade in 1961, in college he was a self-proclaimed agnostic studying to become a lawyer.  During his first year, Josh enthusiastically took on a challenge by a Christian student group to disprove Jesus’s resurrection.  It was a challenge that took him overseas to research old documents and speak with historians, but his journey went much further than he ever imagined.

I was impressed with Josh’s willingness to share the shame-filled memories of his past, even surprised at times at his admittance of certain details of his actions.  I also appreciated the conversations he included that he had with the gents in England as these exchanges gave me insight into how one builds a case for Christ, if so desired. And as his story evolved, I give glory to God for the amazing events that came about from Josh’s willingness to forgive and the way God guided him as he sought God’s perfect plan for his life.  The spiritual thrill continues right up to through the last pages of the last chapter where I was moved to tears!

Posted in Affliction, Anger, Christian, Forgiveness, God's Will, Healing, Love, Peace, Redemption, Relationships, Repentance, Restoration, Shame, Sorrow | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God is with you… in the dark places

Three different times I begged God to make me well again. Each time he said, “No. But I am with you; that is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” Now I am glad to boast about how weak I am; I am glad to be a living demonstration of Christ’s power, instead of showing off my own power and abilities.  Since I know it is all for Christ’s good, I am quite happy about “the thorn,” and about insults and hardships, persecutions and difficulties; for when I am weak, then I am strong—the less I have, the more I depend on him.      2 Corinthians 12:8-10 [TLB]

I’ve been in dark places emotionally and spiritually, even physically where I also have BEGGED God to deliver me; make me better because I felt existing in my current state for the next 5 minutes, let alone another day/week/month was going to crush me. Because I have been there in those desperate places, I can now look into the eyes of another and proclaim that God’s promises are true!  He will sustain and He will not leave.  I cannot say my experience was easy, or quick, or without pain, but He allowed it because He loved me and He had purpose in the pain.

And if I’m found to be in a dark place again and not as strong and confident as I may sound right now, I ask that someone please lovingly look in my eyes and remind me again of God’s words, as I tend to forget.

Posted in Affliction, Body of Christ, Child of God, Christian, Christian Living, Encouragement, God's Sovereignty, Healing, Hope, Promises, Sorrow, Spiritual Battles, Strength, Tears, Trustworthiness | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Manna – When looking for direction

“They were forbidden by the Holy Spirit……..” Acts 16:6

Beloved, whenever you are in doubt as to your course, submit your judgement absolutely to the Spirit of God, and ask Him to shut against you every door but the right one.  Say:  “Blessed Spirit , I cast on You the entire responsibility of closing against my steps any and every course which is not of God.  Let me hear Your voice behind me whenever I turn to the right hand or to the left.”

Quote taken from Streams in the Desert, Vol 1, January 10 and sent by Mom

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Book Report: Wounded by God’s People, by Anne Graham Lotz

I just finished reading Wounded by God’s People written by Anne Graham Lotz.

Initially I was drawn to the title because I’ve been working on getting past some old wounds and I found a sense of comfort thinking someone in the position of influence and spiritual maturity as Anne was compelled to write about it, and at the very least, acknowledge its occurrence in the church, where we expect everyone to act perfectly.  Also upon seeing this book, immediately brought to mind the several people from throughout my life who have shared with me how the church, or rather those in the church hurt them and maybe a book like this would speak to them, as I’m sad to say several of them have written off church, Christians, and ultimately, God.

Anne speaks on the story of Hagar, the maidservant of Sarah (the wife of Abraham), and reveals how God, despite the coarse, if not sinful actions of godly people, God did not abandon her and her son.  In fact, God had a plan for her from the beginning! As I’ve relayed before, there are no plan B’s.

Along with the study on the story of Hagar, this book relays experiences that occurred in Anne’s life as well as the lives of those she is connected with; all who were hurt by those in the church, sometimes by whole congregations. I want to be quick to say, however she in no way made this book out to be a gripe session about Christians or the church; the book focuses on healing.  I found Anne’s transparency, gentleness, compassion, and reliance on the word of God to be a warming balm on my scabbed-over pain which came to the surface several times while I was reading.  Within this 230 page book, I read about where God is when we are wounded, how it feels to be wounded, wounding others, forgiveness, God’s promises and moving forward.

I’m glad I finally took this book home (as I debated getting it during three separate trips to the bookstore).  It was a timely, God-prompting read.  I’ll need to read it again, I’m sure.

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Who plays you on Downton Abbey?

downton title shot

Yes, one of my new favorite shows is Downton Abbey on PBS. It’s right up there with Duck Dynasty!! It has a cast of characters so large and diverse in personalities that I would not be surprised to hear you felt yourself relating to one or two of them.  Maybe, like me there is one that you especially appreciate, or one or two that you CANNOT stand!

I found myself relating to Lady Edith.  Middle child, compliant, feeling overlooked, industrious and not afraid to try something.  Unfortunately… she is ever making bad choices in pursuit of happiness and it makes me cringe.

Who do you relate to on Downton Abbey?  Do you have the quick wit of Old Lady Grantham, the seemingly vast optimism of Isobel Crawley, the severe loyalty of Matthew, or do you and Mr Molesley share the fate of always getting the short end of the stick?

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