Sunday, February 27, 2011

Academy Award Analogy


Do you ever feel yourself spinning relentlessly out of control through the routines of life? I do not know a lot about dance, but I do know that moving across a room while spinning can get you very dizzy if you are not properly trained. You need a focus point, a “spot” to look at each time you turn so you won’t topple over.

Consider God’s word: Psalms 119:59 (NAS) I considered my ways and turned my feet to Your testimonies.


Our world is becoming a smaller and crazier place. Many things we cherish, ideals we believe in, and morality we stand for, are challenged daily; sometimes even in our own churches and families. Political correctness has taken the place of God’s Holy Word. Who is in our corner? How can we be better prepared?

Consider God’s Word: Romans 8:31 (NAS) What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?

Allow the Holy Spirit to be “our Trainer.”

I John 14:26 "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.


God protects His children. God provides for His children, God disciplines His children

Consider these scriptures: Psalms 68:5 (NIV) Father to the fatherless, defender of widows--this is God, whose dwelling is holy.

Matthew 6:26 (NIV) Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?

Proverbs 3:11-12 My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline and do not resent his rebuke, because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.


Have you forgotten your purpose? Do you feel used up, outgrown, discarded? Even in our loneliest times, when we are questioning our destinies, God promises remain sovereign and true. If we seek after Truth, He will reveal Himself and His purpose and renew our spirit.

Consider these scriptures: Romans 8:28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

Romans 8: 38-39 “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord”.

Luke 19:10 “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”

See and Read also Psalm 71.

Like was mentioned earlier, don’t we all want perseverance in our life, consistency, truth and integrity? Well, it wouldn’t really be a life with lessons to learn if we all didn’t have our ups and downs. Even against the toughest of days, when we have messed up, God is always faithful; faithful to help us get back on our horse and face our foes.  Sometimes God can use the strangest people and difficult trials to grow us.

Consider this scripture: Matthew 10:22 You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.

Our God is a just God and justice shall be in His courts.

Proverbs 28:5 Evil men do not understand justice, but those who seek the LORD understand it fully.

God promises us a full abundant life, and when our dreams are aligned with His purpose, all things are possible. Allow God to be your inspiration and partake in His Divine Nature.

Consider these scriptures: John 10:10 “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

Genesis 31:11 The angel of God said to me in the dream, 'Jacob.' I answered, 'Here I am.'

II Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.”

II Peter 1:4 “Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.”


God’s Word speaks for itself;  no commentary needed here.

John 11:25 Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies.”

John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

See also the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5-7.

God calls us to fellowship, to love one another and lift each other up. As part of the Body of Christ, we are to use our gifts within this same Body to further Christ’s teachings and allow His light to shine to others while awaiting His return.

I John 1:7 “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin”.

What should our “status” be? It’s about all the grace we can share everyday in our walk with Him.

Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”


Do you have a firm foundation in your life? When life has not given you a perfect family, a perfect home or job and your generational sins seem to follow, God can restore you on a firm, new foundation, one that will withstand the evil in this world.

Consider His Word: (Jesus said) Luke 6:47-48 As for everyone who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice, I will show you what they are like. 48 They are like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built.”

Psalm 1:1-3 Blessed is the one
who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
or sit in the company of mockers,
2 but whose delight is in the law of the LORD,
and who meditates on his law day and night.
3 That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—
whatever they do prospers.


Consider and meditate on God’s Word.

Psalm 23 “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.”

Isaiah 40:29 (NIV)
29 He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 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.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Punctuation Marks in my Life.

What would writing be without punctuation?  Well, consider these statements:

"King Charles walked and talked half an hour after his head was cut off" ...a little alarming. 
  "King Charles walked and talked; half an hour after, his head was cut off", ...less so.

Don't worry, I will not be giving a grammar lesson here, just a tie together of some of this month's observations. 

 Statements of intent, pauses and periods. While in my Study Skills class, the teacher gave an "exit exam" lesson on punctuation marks.  Special Ed. kids aren't ususally the "take notes from a lecture" type. Hands on and visual learning are great teaching helps for those students with   individualized issues and learning disabilities.  Having my own student in mind, I went home and  brain stormed on the computer, creating  a "visual aide poster" in which to use in class to show proper punctuation and also use for testing.  Taking it back to the teacher the next day, he loved it and recopied it, using it as tool.  I was encouraged, since I've been researching this week on-line about  breaking into the educational market for writing as well.  Nancy Sanders,  who I mentioned in my last posting, spoke about how she started  her free-lance career by entering small projects within this market. Working with my student at the other high school, and now my  current special needs student,  I am finding  numerous opportunities to adapt the lessons with a little creativity and visual style, especially when it comes to abstract ideas like British Literature, poetry, idioms and metaphors.  It would be nice to get a little extra income for some of these ideas, thus I will intentionally persue this in any spare time I may have and see what goes. be cont.

Nancy I. Sanders sharing at Aspiring Writer's Forum

A Question answered
A Quote to take note of
"  "
" I think I would die if I didn't have it," quoted one of my favorite high-functioning autistic kids at school. 

"Have what, Mackey?" I asked.

"Knowledge"  he replied.

                                             Parenthesis and Brackets

This is really my work
 For many of you who know me well, math has never been my subject. Let's see, this is probably my 6th go- around at Algebra B which includes a few summer school classes too; that's not including taking it myself  back when I was in high school.  Oh yeah, we used an abacus back then.  I am proud to say, I am finally getting it.  Dividing multinomial polynomials is making sense. Brackets and parenthesis no longer intimidate me.  (please, no one send me a Soduko puzzle...I will lose all my self-confidence). I better give Mr Delfin some credit here or I will never here the end of it.  Thanks Mr. D. 

My Exclamation Point! 

No, I do not have grandchildren yet.  Corey, my 25 year old,  is still a ways off from settling down and I continue to pray for the woman (I don't know who you are, but God does!) he chooses, and that God's choice, well,  will be one in the same. However, I do have a special couple in my life,  in whom I love like a son and daughter-in-law; James and Jessica;  and Ethan is their little pride and joy.  Indulge me here why I post his picture, taken  a little after Christmas with his present from us.
Ethan is almost 10 months here, teething as you can see and all boy!
He took his first steps a few days ago and James called to tell me the news!  He has a big brother, named Fabian who is in 8th grade!  I pray we can continue to be a special part in all of their lives!  .

Acts 4:39  For the promise is for you and your children, and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God shall call  to Himself. 

Post 9-11/Post Tuscon
Back to being a little more serious, I noticed a phrase used by the media since the tragedy in Arizona.  We used to say "Post 9/11" and now the newscasters are referring to this time as "Post Tuscon."  It's all about how we act "after the tragedy".  Well, I would like to share something I saw on the news, about how someone was acting BEFORE the tragedy in Tuscon and let this encourage you further. *


                      *  BE KIND TO SOMEONE TODAY. 

Finally, Have you seen the newest punctuation mark?  It shows up all the time in e-mails and texts messages.  It looks like this-    :) 
May the commas in your life bring you pause to count your blessings  
May the periods in your life, move you forward.
May the colons and semi-colons add excitement.
May those who quote to you, and your own quotes be filled with love.
May your exclamation points bring joy.
 May you receive great wisdom from your questions.
 May God bless you with a long dash line in which to accomplish many dreams.
 May the asterisk after your name refer to God's Book of Life! Amen. 

Monday, February 7, 2011

Writing: The Desire of My Heart.

 Sharing my feelings and thoughts, and what I think are creative anecdotes, puts me in that vulnerable spot of possible judgment.  It's downright scary!  ( I still feel anxious when I want to share).  Rhyming silly poetry all my life and excelling in essay writing in college; journaling finally became a constant in my life about eight years ago.  Notebooks were my companion after losing our house to a fire, not only for practical reasons to keep information, but I started writing out my prayers during this very trying time in our lives. Documenting my son's illness, both our good days and our not so good days, helped me to keep a good  reality check on myself.  A yellow highlighter marked the answered prayers and those notebooks became a personal but tangible way to see God at work in my life.  Somewhere in that fog of what I call my "cave dwelling years" , I started to share a little of my writing and I also purchased a sketch pad and some pastels off eBay. God gave me a memory of the artist I used to be.  Could I rediscover her? 

Later,  A friend told me about a writing site that she had heard about from another friend called  I was new at this writing thing, well, the "writing for purpose" part anyways.  I just knew in my heart that I enjoyed it. I certainly knew I needed to keep busy and this was how I wanted to do this and  grow in my faith as well.  God filled my days and nights with thoughts, inspiration and memories as I allowed myself to spiritually feel His presence and seek my destiny...His purpose. Out of my personal grief, I heard heaven so loudly, I felt every touch of His Spirit, I saw everything as Spirit-driven, the Fragrance of God infused my thoughts and His sweet voice spoke to my soul. Unable to contain all God was doing, I had to write.  Poetry flowed,  devotions from my study of God's Word took on analogies, observances in life around me became an applicable storyline. Writing  brought me peace in a time when  I needed it most. 

When it came to the Faithwriters site, I was hooked right away, submitting stories almost every challenge.  I enjoyed the feedback and especially the challenge of coming up with a story or poem to fit the topic.  As my writing slowly improved, connecting  with a few other writers became an added bonus.  Although I was not real active on the message boards, the names of the writers and the ones like myself who wrote continually and amazingly, I might add,  became familiar.  In June of 2009,  Empty/Full appeared as a new weekly topic.  When I pondered that subject, I thought about a "glass...half empty or half full."

 Two characters, one with this optimistic view of life and one with this pessimistic view of life,  crawled across my keyboard (well, not literally),  thus "A Worm's Eye View" was born.  Yep, my characters were two worms.  As the story goes, these brothers, twins actually,  see things differently until one day, the more positive of the two, Peter,  decided his brother Thomas really needed a make-over, not just physically but mentally and spiritually as well. The attitude just had to go! 

I was rewarded with a First place in my category from the Faithwriter's Challenge staff.   This was so encouraging!  Later that summer, I was able to attend the Faithwriter's Conference in Livonia, Michigan. I had a wonderful time, learning so much and especially meeting fellow Christian writers like myself; many already tasting success in the writing world.     In common, we all love the Lord and wish to share His great love, by allowing God to use us to inspire with what words we may share. 

Faithwriter Conference 2009

Some of my Faithwriter buddies

Through the "Yellow feedback bars," some  thought my entry could make a great children's story, and could see this book illustrated.:

"This could be turned into a cute children's story/picture book."

Glynis Becker 06/13/09

God gave me a little talent in that area as well. I found myself in art class doing projects right along with my students and feeling the joy it brought me to create and use different mediums in my expression. The artist in me had been on hiatus for way too long. Through the added inspiration of Ms.Hunt at Don Lugo High School, I rediscovered my talent. Thank you also to my friend Cathy, and artist herself who joined with me in this re-booting of a gift.  

 It was very soon, that I attended a one day woman's seminar with my friend Cyndi at a church neither of us attended.  She just thought it sounded fun and would be a chance for us to fellowship and spend a day together...and  what a glorious day we had!  This group of women , a little more charasmatic than I am used to, really spoke to Cyndi and I.  We truly felt the Spirit of God moving; an exciting hope of what was to come.  I believe our friendship that day took another turn as well, becoming even more intimate as we humbled ourselves before the Lord and petitioned for His  understanding, forgiveness and His restorative purpose for our lives. 

Cyndi and Coleene

 Receiving a special gift,  a large book filled with blank pages, graced each attendee. Creatively telling God our dreams, aspirations, and prayers, with scizzors, glue and magazines, we were instructed to "cut out and tell a story."  Like a ransom note, I snipped out words that spoke of a plan, and a purpose I hoped God would honor through me.  I told Him how I wanted to feel again, how I wanted that restoration that was already taking place, to continue.  It is in the inside front page of this same book that I would begin to illustrate Thomas and Peter and their own journey and discovery adventure. 

Psalms 37:3-4 (NIV)
3 Trust in the LORD and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. 4 Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. 

That summer, sketching out a couple of "googly-eyed" worms, deciding I would use my artist colored pencils and praying for a vision for each page, I began.  Many warm  nights, I sat in the living room with the sketchbook in my lap, invisioning and bringing these characters to life.  My own backyard would come alive in the pages of the book and detail was paramount.  I became passionate about every page, anticipating what picture best illustrated the dialog. Packing up the book and my pencils,  they traveled with me to the conference, where I shared part of the beginnings of my dream with my new friends.  It would take me another year to complete. 

New Year 2010, after the Facebook explosion, and reconnecting with many friends, I enjoyed a mini-reunion with some of my high school buddies at a resturant in our home town.  Close to completion, I  the  took a chance to share my storybook.  Thank you Karolyn for taking this picture.

"A Worm's Eye View" is completed.  I have written a query introduction and I am seeking opportunities to  publish now.   What is God doing?  He is bringing the opportunities right to my doorstep.  An award winning author of over 70 books lives right here in my town, Nancy I. Sanders. She leads a writing group I had inquired about, but it met during my working hours.  I never met Nancy, but it seemed we had mutual friends.  I e-mailed her and attempted to make a connection, but she was booked for six months and by that time, I was full swing into my own writing group and our self-published projects, thus 2010 almost went by without meeting with her.  A few days before Christmas while in Staples, I waited while I was having some things lamenated and a woman and  her husband walk in.  Striking up a conversation because she looked familiar to me, we continued to chat, but I could not  place her face.  Back and forth we went until she got a hint, and then introduced herself as Nancy Sanders.  Why did I recognize her but not quite place her in my life?  Pictured on a news clipping, posted on the back of my desk behind my computer all year,  Nancy Sanders!  In my busyness,  God literally brought her to me.  Long story-- short, as the cliche goes, we met after the holidays, she saw my book, she liked it, gave me encouragement, some possible ways to get it published and doors continue to open.  Moving this project along, God grants me the desire of my heart.   

Encouraging friends and family supporting me all through this, I thank you so very much. On Thanksgiving day, I completed the back cover.  The first week of January, I wrote my query proposal.  Editing,  re-copying and digitally copying the story, I am about ready for submission. Waiting on God, I continue to move on to many other projects, including two other stories I want to illustrate and several submissions to "Chicken Soup," and a novella loosely based on my own mother in which I am already over 10,000 words.     I am serious about this "writing thing" and so thankful to God that this seems to be working for me.  Perserverence and patience to know that God's timing is perfect timing in now my prayer,  To God Be The Glory. 

Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV).

 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."