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Archive for the ‘Faith and Spirituality’ Category

 I am posting this again.  The first time I posted this was 7/22/2006.  It has been one of the most visited of my posts.  I hope you enjoy and that you come in contact with the Master of the wind today.

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Years ago, a farmer owned land along the Atlantic seacoast. He constantly advertised for hired hands. Most people were reluctant to work on farms along the Atlantic. They dreaded the awful storms that raged across the sea, wreaking havoc on the buildings and crops. As the farmer interviewed applicants for the job, he received a steady stream of refusals.

Finally, a short, thin man, well past middle age, approached the farmer. “Are you a good farm hand?” the farmer asked him. “Well, I can sleep when the wind blows,” answered the little man.

Although puzzled by this answer, the farmer, desperate for help, hired him. The little man worked well around the farm, busy from dawn to dusk, and the farmer felt satisfied with the man’s work. Then one night the wind howled loudly in from offshore.

Jumping out of bed, the farmer grabbed a lantern and rushed next door to the hired hand’s sleeping quarters. He shook the little man and yelled, “Get Up! A storm is coming! Tie things down before they blow away!”

The little man rolled over in bed and said firmly, “No sir, I told you, I can sleep when the wind blows.”

Enraged by the response, the farmer was tempted to fire him on the spot. Instead, he hurried outside to prepare for the storm. To his amazement, he discovered that all of the haystacks had been covered with tarpaulins. The cows were in the barn, the chickens were in the coops, and the doors were barred. The shutters were tightly secured.

Everything was tied down.

Nothing could blow away. The farmer then understood what his hired hand meant,

so he returned to his bed to also sleep while the wind blew.

MORAL OF THIS STORY

When you’re prepared, spiritually, mentally, and physically, you have nothing to fear. Can you sleep when the wind blows through your life?

The hired hand in the story was able to sleep because he had secured the farm against the storm.

We secure ourselves against the storms of life by grounding ourselves in the Word of God.

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We don’t need to understand, we just need to hold His hand

to have peace in the middle of storms.

When I read this story I was reminded of a couple of songs my mother use to sing. One said, “I know the Master of the Wind. I know the maker of the rain. He can calm the storm, make the sun shine again. I know the Master of the Wind.” The other one had words like, ” ’til the storm passes over, ’til the thunder sounds no more, ’til the clouds roll forever from the sky…hold me fast let me stand in the hollow of thy hand. Keep me safe, ’til the storm passes by.”

For as long as I live, I will remember Mother sitting at her piano and singing that last song, “hold me fast, let me stand in the hollow of thy hand….” as she battled cancer in her body. Her voice was very weak but her spirit was strong because she had secured things between her and her maker. I could tell and so could everyone around her that she was not afraid of the stormy winds blowing in her life. Thank you God for a mother that really did KNOW the Master of the Wind.

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Sunday was my first Sunday back to church since surgery and I was not disappointed. Of course I’m never disappointed when I go to church but there are some services that are just over the top and this was one of those. I find it hard to write about how powerful God can be sometimes. It is just not explainable. I will tell you though, that the POWER of the Holy Ghost so overwhelmed us that it was incredible. Everyone in the house was moved in some way or other. There was healing, deliverance, cleansing, blessings (bountiful), and the list goes on. I had rejoiced in this service all day Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Then last night going into the prayer room before service, I automatically was carried into His presence once again. The service again was kissed with God’s sweet presence as the congregation began to sing praises to our God. A young man, Kyle was leading the worship service and for his last song of the evening he asked everyone to get their songbooks out and turn to the song, The Old Rugged Cross. He said, “I know it may be old young people but I want you to pay close attention to the words. They are powerful.” As he began to lead the song, he wept. There was such a precious remembrance of what Christ has done for us at Calvary as we sang that “old song”.

My husband has been in a series of Bible Study about “The Rhythm of Life”. So far we have covered, Work and Rest. Last Night was his first study on Worship and all throughout the lesson you could just feel the Lord’s presence. At the closing of the lesson as we began to worship, God’s presence once again touched us is such a special way.  It is just one of those times when we are walking in the Spirit.

There are many times when we must walk by faith and we are not feeling God so much. We feel like Job when he said, “Oh that I knew where I might find him! that I might come even to his seat!” (Job 23) So allow me to encourage you in the Lord. He does know the way you take. He will come through for YOU. Don’t give up. Keep worshiping Him! A breakthrough is coming your way. If He will do it in Hollister, He will do it wherever you are! YES HE WILL!

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While talking to a friend not to long ago (a new pastor’s wife), I realized that she had lost the “wonder of it all”. She was bogged down with the cares of the church and people that she felt like had not treated her, her husband (the pastor) and the saints of God right. After trying to encourage her I began to think about it and how we can allow such things to overwhelm us if we are not careful. I guess this would be especially for my pastor wife friends, however, good for everyone. 🙂 Don’t lose the “WONDER OF IT ALL”. Our relationship with God is so important. We cannot let it go. Our everyday devotions are so important. We cannot let them go. Our time reading HIS word is so important. We cannot let it go. NOTHING should be allowed to come in between our relationship with the Lord. Well meaning people cannot take that away from us or we lose “the wonder of it all”. Jesus said that he came to give life and that more abundantly. And yes, that still means for us too. Not just for the people we are trying to reach and who are in our congregations. The best thing that you can do for the people you are trying to help is keep your spirit fresh and prayed up. I still get thrilled with Jesus! I keep falling in Love with Him. He’s the best thing that ever happened to me. When I go to church I still love lifting my hands and giving Him praise. I love to dance before my Lord. He is the “wonder of it all”. If I lose that, I have lost everything. Keep the faith, ladies! Keep believing! God can do anything! He can take care of any situation! The next time you enter into your church, enter with the intention of receiving a blessing. Keep the “wonder of it all” alive and well in your life. Keep Jesus your very best friend!

The Wonder of It All!

Who can compare? Who could replace?

I’m overwhelmed by who you are. I can never be the same.

I lift my eyes to meet your gaze. Oh how you take my breath away.

I can never be the same beloved friend.

I bow down. Adore your name.

I cry out worthy, worthy.

You are God.

There is none beside you.

I have been captured. I have been captured.

You’re the wonder of it all.

You’re the wonder of it all.

(words and music: Sarah Parsons and Paul Sims)

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HIS GRACE…OUR HOPE was the theme for our !st Annual Missions Conference. Every service was awesome in it’s own way. I must give credit where credit is due to Teresa Sarria for putting together such a great conference. Teresa you are incredible!

Friday Night started with the children bringing in flags of different countries while the song “Jesus Loves the Little Children” was being played. Then as they got to the front they sang the song and then posted their flags into the holder that had been made for this purpose. After they exited then 2 United States Marines came in carrying the American Flag and the Marine Corps flag. When they got to the front and the Marine Corps flag was being lowered Kyle Valenti played the National Anthem on the guitar and then Nathan led us in “The Pledge of Allegiance”. After the Pledge of Allegiance we all sang, “God Bless America” and then Nathan prayed for our country and it’s leaders. It was a very touching moment. Of course, I am always touched by patriotic things and this was no exception. We then turned our focus to Foreign Missions. Bro. Bruce Howell (director of Foreign Missions U.P.C.I.) had a personal message for us via DVD. He thanked us for what our church had done in the past for missions and for what we were going to do in this conference and the coming year. It was very special. Then, Luis began the song, “Amazing Grace” on his saxophone. No other instruments accompanied. It was beautiful. Gary Hurst then began to tell of the the great things God is doing in the foreign field. At different intervals of him reading the statistics of how many have received the Holy Ghost, been baptized in Jesus Name, churches started, etc. different ones sang the song “Amazing Grace” in a foreign language. Faith Nova sang in Japanese, Amanda Silveira in French, Dominic Ingram in Portuguese and Matthew Silveira in Spanish. It was beautiful. Then the whole congregation sang at the conclusion of the report and I don’t think I’ve ever heard Amazing Grace sung with such passion. Missionary John Beek and his wife were with us and he preached and shared his burden for Scotland. It was great!

Saturday Night was our Home Missions service. The Sign Co. began the service with the song, “Father, Can you Hear Me?” They did a superb job as usual. Then Danelle Silveira sang, “Marvelous Grace” and that was incredible. Then Vessels of Honor sang, “Until We Care”, and Scott Sarria sang the song “Every Man” with a power point presentation. Bro. Stuart Young and his family were with us from Livermore and he preached on “Who Are You”. We so enjoyed having them and Sis. Young’s parents, The Johnson’s with us in service tonight.

Sunday was another great service with Faith Promise being the theme for today. We just had church! The chorale sang, “Until We Care” again and then we sang, “Say So”! Bro. and Sis. Randy Keyes was with us today and what an incredible message he preached!!! Bro. Keyes is one of the most faith building preachers I know. He preaches with such faith that you can’t help but grasp hold of some of it while the word is going forth. AWESOME! INCREDIBLE! I am so excited about what our church did for missions and in their sacrificial giving that I could almost burst. It is amazing how God really turns His focus on a people when they turn their focus on the harvest. My oh My! Enjoy the pictures! His Grace….Our Hope!

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Last week Nathan was in board meetings with the Multi-Cultural director for the U.P.C.I., Rev. Don Hanscom and several other men who are part of this ministry. On Thursday Night we were privileged to be in service at the Filipino Conference. It was so precious to worship with these fine people. Bro. Jesse Fortaleza from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada preached a message on “They Did It Anyway” that I will never forget. Here are a few pics of the conference:

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filipino-conference-2007-001-large-web-view.jpg One of the special singing groups.

filipino-conference-2007-033-large-web-view.jpg Nathan praying for young man in wheel chair.

filipino-conference-2007-008-large-web-view.jpg Bro. Hanscom giving gift to Rev. and Mrs. Ben Patts

filipino-conference-2007-031-large-web-view.jpg Father praying for his children. (precious)

filipino-conference-2007-035-large-web-view.jpg Praise Team

filipino-conference-2007-043-large-web-view.jpg Sis. Hanscom with one of the pastor’s wives.

filipino-conference-2007-029-large-web-view.jpg Very talented worship band.

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Today was an incredible day of Faith.  My husband preached a message entitled, “The Eyes of Faith”.  WOW!  As he preached, it was if you could see the “lights” go on in people’s head.  “Don’t look at the circumstances around you, but instead, lift up your eyes and see through the eyes of faith.  This is not a escapest mentality.  It is only learning how to see things as Jesus sees them.”  I saw men receive blessings today like I haven’t seen in a long time.  I saw one man fall to his knees and worship and worship.  Another was shaken under the power of the Holy Ghost.  I watched as 3 men began to pray for one another with their hands on each other’s shoulders and then watched as they began to dance.  They danced and danced until I thought surely they can’t dance anymore, but they did.  It was awesome.  I watched as fathers prayed for sons and daughters and vice versa and how the power of God touched them.  One of the most precious sights for me today was watching my natural children (grown now), as God moved in their lives.  Both of them with hands upraised and tears streaming down their faces in praise and worship to a God that never fails.  What better father’s day present could there be then for this kind of out pouring on God’s children.  God, our heavenly father visited us today in a mighty way.  There is strenghth in this kind of atmosphere.  God is GREAT and He is GREATLY to BE PRAISED!

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Just another little tidbit about my Dad. Enjoy!

Daddy had an incredible love for young people. When he was young he was the Youth President of the Western District, U.P.C.I. I hear stories even today from pastors and their wives in the Western District of how much Daddy and Mother meant to them as teenagers going to camps and conventions, etc. When he pastored in Fresno, California back in the sixties, he was driving in town one day and saw a young “hippie” boy on the side of the road. He said that his first inclination was to say, “go get a haircut and a job, boy”. However, when he had that thought he said that God spoke to him and said, “why don’t you try to see that boy through my eyes”? And he began to weep. He later preached a sermon entitled, “Seeing the Lost through the Eyes of Jesus”. It was a great sermon. He also experienced great revival with just those kind of young people. Well over 100 of them received the Holy Ghost and was baptized in Jesus Name. Some of them are in ministry today and some are still in the church there in Fresno and in various congregations around the nation. God led Daddy and Mother from Fresno to Houston to Rialto, CA to Mesquite, TX to traveling for 5 years and then going to be the leader of the Lighthouse Ranch for Boys in Louisiana. Everywhere they went they impacted young people! I just wonder, when the rewards are handed out in Heaven how many jewells will be in their crowns?

Daddy had an incredible love for my mother, Lila Marie. I remember as a girl when Daddy would leave to go pray for someone or just take care of business in town, that he would stop at a pay phone and call Mother just tell her that he loved her. We would get tickled about it but it left an impression on me that I will never forget. He treated Mother with utmost respect, and she returned that to him. I believe that the greatest gift you can give your children is that you love one another. There is security in that for kids.

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