HOME…

“He which testifies these things says, ‘Surely I come quickly, Amen.’  Even so, come, Lord Jesus.” (Come and take us home to be with you)  Parenthesis, mine.  Revelation 22:20

“There is nothing on earth that can satisfy our deepest longing.  We long to see God.  The leaves of life are rustling with the rumor that we will…and we won’t be satisfied until we do.”  Max Lucado from his book:  When God Whispers Your Name

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The smell of Chile simmering on the stove…the fireplace ablaze with warmth and light.  Rain falling quietly just outside my window…Home.

If home is this compelling here on earth, I have to wonder…what will heaven be like?

Will there be pies cooling in the window of my Saviors’ kitchen?  Will He have a big pot of something delicious simmering on His stove?  Will the fire in His hearth bathe me in warmth and light?  Or, will He be all the warmth and light I need?  Will I hear thunder roll and see lightening light up the sky?  Will pure, glistening diamond like substance fall softly to the ground?

Is there a sky?  Is there ground as I know it?  Or will I skip on clouds?  I have to wonder…

The only thing I know for sure is:  I will be HOME!  My REAL home…my eternal home, my meant to be home.

We all long for home.  It is a void placed within us by God Himself.  We use phrases like: “Be it ever so humble, there’s no place like home.”  Or, “Home is where the heart is.”

It is really our eternal home that we all long for.  No matter how many things we buy to decorate and spruce up our homes here on earth, we are never satisfied.  There is always something that seems to be missing.  Something more we want…something more me need…something just beyond our reach.

It’s the call of Heaven.  Our hearts long for this blissful place of rest and acceptance.  This place of refuge, where the lion will lie down in peace with the lamb.  No war, no famine, no tears, no death.  Only peace and love!

Let me tell you friend…it’s NOT beyond your reach!  Jesus, and your eternal home are just a prayer away.  He invited you years ago when He stretched open His arms wide on the cross and said, “Come to me…and I will not cast you away!”  He died for you…He died for me so that we could go where He is.

Just tell Him you want to go home with Him…He will make sure that you do!

By:  Anita Mondragon  2014

GREAT NEWS! THE TRIUNE GOD IS OUR FRIEND!

I wonder if Jesus enjoyed His quiet times with His friends?  I believe He did!  Remember when He made fish on the fire for all of them right after His resurrection?  Best beach party ever!

I know I sure do enjoy the times I spend with my friends.  Laughing, talking, sharing one another’s burdens, praying together…it’s pure bliss!

I was watching the movie, The Shack the other day.  In that movie, there is a scene where Mack, the main character of the book is having dinner with God the Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.  The Trinity asks Mack to tell them about his family and what’s going on with them.  They listen intently, as though They’ve heard it for the first time.  Once Mack finally notices this, he asks Them why They are laughing and smiling and showing concern…because They already KNOW  what’s going on, and they already know what he’s going to say! ( -We were known to God before the foundation of the world!  See Ephesians 1:4)  Their response?  “Because We love seeing things through your eyes!”

God knows everything about us, but we show Him He’s our true friend when we SHARE our burdens, thoughts, and secrets with Him…because that’s what GOOD FRIENDS do!

Talk to the Triune God today!  When you’re having your morning coffee, ask Them to join you.  Share your joys with Them.  Share your sorrows, doubts and fears as well.  Like good friends, They’re always present to listen!

The difference between Them and our dear earthly friends, is that They not only listen, but They can change your situation, and make everything all right!

Gotta go!  Time for coffee and fellowship with my Three best Friends!

Anita

GOD’S IN CONTROL!

Well, it seems as though today is another one of those days that I need extra encouragement from the Lord.  The older I get, the more I realize my need of His counsel and guidance!

I really believe that our age doesn’t  have anything to do with our need of Him…but age seems to cause one to admit to their frailties, and in so doing, we recognize our need of God’s help and grace much more than when we are young!

Maybe you’re like me today, and find you have a special need…something you desire from God….  Having said that, I went to my Promise Box again this morning, and here are the two promises I drew….  I hope they will be an encouragement to you as they were to me.  Take a look….

“I beseech you therefore brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” -Romans 12:1

“The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; He will save, He will rejoice over thee with joy; He will rest in His love, HE WILL JOY OVER THEE WITH SINGING!” -Zephaniah 3:17

“Thou shalt guide me with Thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory!” -Psalm 73:24

The poem that went with the above verse says this…

My knowledge of that life is small,

The eye of faith is dim;

But it’s enough that Christ knows all,

And I shall be with him!” -Unknown

Take heart!  God is in control!

Anita

I’M TIRED!!

I don’t know about you…but I’m tired!

I’m tired of the ‘Haves’, continually taking from the ‘Have-Not’s’!

I’m tired of the new concept that there is no longer black and white, no right, no wrong… but everything is now gray!

I’m tired of the new idea that there are no absolutes in this world anymore.  What’s truth to me, may not be truth to you….  I’m sorry!  But that’s bologna, anyway you slice it!

I’m tired of trying to teach my children to be honest, forthright, and truthful…and then having to explain to them, why the leaders and politicians of this world make it to the top of the heap by lying through their teeth!

I’m tired of seeing homeless people on the streets with nowhere to go!

I’m tired of clinics being set up, and supplied with drugs for addicts, while veterans of war go untreated!

I’m tired of receiving little, to no compensation from government entities such as social security, medicare, medicaid, food stamp assistance, and the like when I’ve worked my whole life and put into these programs, but never been allowed to use them because I have a job!

I’m tired of our ‘justice’ system that allows murderers and rapists to go free on a technicality, due to their rights being violated!

I’m tired of the Witness Protection program that causes good, up-standing citizens to have to change their whole lives in order to stay alive, while known criminals still walk the streets and do their evil deeds all the while, being “watched” by the authorities!

I’m tired of the civil war and unrest between races and cultures that persists in this nation on a daily basis!

I’m tired of the prices of housing, utilities, food, clothing…everything going up, while our income remains the same!

I’m tired of the lack of character in folks today!

I’m tired of the loss of integrity in people…from the top of our government, to the poorest man in the streets!

I’m tired of the powerful using the weak to their benefit!

I’m tired of the rights of animals, and their welfare being more important than the rights of unborn children!

I’m tired of seeing the hungry and starving children of this world continue to be hungry and starving!

I’m tired of big corporations, with all their money and clout, pushing out the ‘little guy’!

I’m tired of being afraid to go to McDonald’s, Wal-Mart, the mall, or driving on the street or highway for fear of being shot!

I’m tired of the government trying to take away our rights, one by one, and brainwashing the weak-minded into believing, “its for their good”!

I’m tired of those in authority “stomping” on the Constitution, and revoking all it stands for!

I’m tired of our government officials who are willing to listen to middle school and high school students (who have no idea of what being an adult is about), and changing our laws because of their voice!  We have 14 year old kids running the country!

I’m tired of people forgetting about those in the military that gave their lives for the freedoms we still possess in this country!

I’m tired of people wanting me to allow them to share their religion, when I am not allowed to share mine!

I’m tired of the word, “Equality” being over-used, when there is anything but equality going on in this world!

I’m tired of the word, “tolerance”, for in today’s world, that only means that I’m supposed to be tolerant of you…but you don’t have to be tolerant of me!

I’m tired of the violence!

I’m tired of the hate!

I’m really tired of the lack of God in this nation!  ….

And therein, lies the problem of this present-day world we live in!  No one wants God, Jesus, or the Holy Spirit in their everyday lives anymore!  God is love, and if we had more of Him…all the things I mentioned above would not exist!

Anita

“HEY LORD…CAN WE PLEASE JUST TAKE A SHORTCUT?”

I don’t know about you…but I am kind of on the impatient side.  Once my mind is made up to do something, I want to “Git ‘er done!”  I hate procrastinating!

Peter was that kind of guy too.  He was passionate about everything he did.  He was hasty, and often made the wrong decision, or said the wrong thing.  Remember when he drew his sword and cut off the High Priest’s ear?  Or when he told Jesus he would never deny Him, and shortly thereafter swore to the enemies of Jesus that he never knew Him (Jesus), and ended up denying Him not once, but three times?

Right now, I am feeling a lot like Peter!  I have a few things that I’ve been praying about for quite sometime, and I don’t see much progress.  Oh, I KNOW God is working in my favor.  I believe His promises…but He’s just taking a little bit too long…in my estimation anyway!

Is it wrong for me to tell Him that?  No.  I may as well, because He already knows that’s what I’m thinking.  It’s kind of like our children.  We tell them at a certain time that they need to go to bed….  And we already know the argument that’s about to ensue.  They have other plans, and voice them to us.  We’ve heard them a thousand times.  But in the end, if we are good parents, the last word is ours.  We KNOW what is best for them.

The same holds true with God.  He knows the plans He has for us -Jeremiah 11:29.  He has our best future at heart!

There are no shortcuts when constructing a building.  When some have chosen to take shortcuts, we have seen the horrible end to those decisions.  Some buildings have gone up in smoke, due to failure of heeding fire codes; some have collapsed, killing innocent people left trapped under the rubble.  There are building codes for a reason!  It’s called, SAFETY!

Our life, and it’s story is no different.  God has a plan, and He IS the master builder!  We need to let him take control and be at peace with His timing.  My mom used to have a saying, “Rome wasn’t built in a day!”  She used that on me several times during my growing up years when I became impatient with things.

We’ve all tried to take shortcuts in our life.  WE decide that we want to do something, and without going to God in prayer and asking for His blessing, or guidance.  We dive head first into the deep, and  moments later we’re screaming for His help!  Come on now!  I know I’m not alone in this boat!

A few folks in the Bible did the same thing.  Sarah and Abraham couldn’t wait for God’s timing regarding Issac…and look at that mess!  It’s still going on!  Samson didn’t pray about who his mate should be, and he ended up blind and in prison.  The angels told Lot and his family not to look back when they fled the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah…but Lot’s wife thought she had to take just one more look-she was turned into a pillar of salt.  King Saul had his kingdom taken away because he was too impatient to wait for Samuel’s arrival.  I could name more, but you get the picture.

It is not wise to run ahead of God, or to lag behind!  Pray, and wait for His timing.  He will open the door when the moment is right!

“Anita…I hope you really listened to this ‘sermon’ you just preached, because, although it is for everyone…it was primarily for you!” -GOD

“Ouch!” -Anita

HURRY! HURRY! HURRY!

I wrote the following poem back in 2011, but this past week-end reminded me of it.  I met myself, coming and going!  I didn’t even know which one of the kids I was at times!  It was a great weel-end, but now it’s time to slow down and think on the wonderful things God has wrought in my life!  Time to reflect….  -anita

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“giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Ephesians 5: 20

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The sun comes up…we’re on our way;

Off to work in a hurry…no time to pray!

Not a moment to waste…not a minute to spare;

Too busy deciding just what we should wear.

Can’t find the keys, and the cell phone is dead…

Must find the charger…no time for devotions to be read!

No time to lift up our head to say,

“Thank you God for waking me up today!”

Don’t remember His name…no thoughts of Him,

Until we run into a big problem!

Or, maybe we’re mad, and His name’s said THAT way…

Don’t you think it would have been easier just to pray?

Yes!  Tomorrow morning, that’s how I’ll start my day…

By lifting my head, or bowing to say:

“I NEED YOU Lord Jesus…keep me in your way,

And just get me through this crazy day!”

By:  Anita Mondragon May 2011

I’LL TAKE MY CHANCES…

I posted this back in 2015, but it bears repeating.  The message is URGENT! -anita

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“Listen!  I am standing at the door, knocking; if you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in…”  Revelation 3:20

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In a quaint little mountain church in Idaho Springs, Colorado, sits a young woman.  She used to attend on a regular basis…but she’s too sophisticated for that at present.

The wild friends, parties, and distractions of this world hold all of her attention now.  The ‘Storybook Jesus’, from Sunday School has long since faded from her mind.

She only came today as a favor to her old high school friend, Tom.  He was back in town for a few days on Spring Break, and had practically begged her to come to church this morning.

The preacher was a ‘fire and brimstone’ sort, so she had nearly tuned him out.  He seemed to be rambling on and on about Hell.  She’d heard it all before…BORING!!

Then, he suddenly got quiet, and whispered, “Tomorrow is promised to no one.  Today could be your last opportunity to come to Jesus!”  He was actually crying now!  She wanted to laugh…partially from the revelation that he could be right, and that scared her!  But, mostly to impress her other ‘party’ friends that had joined her to get Tom off their backs.  But, instead of laughing, or running to the altar, she took the hymnal and scribbled something inside on the fly-leaf.

FINALLY!  The invitation music came to a close.  She couldn’t wait to get out of there!  Her and her friends said their good-byes to Tom, and piled into the car.  It was a beautiful day!  So warm and sunny…  Someone suggested they put the top down so they could feel the warm breeze.

They roared down the two lane canyon highway driving recklessly.  The alcohol was being passed around as they mocked the preacher’s words.  Cursing loudly, and shaking their fists, they passed an old gentleman who was moving too slow for them.  They were in a hurry!  After all, they barely had time to make it to a party in Denver.  “Park it or drive you old goat!” they yelled.

Just as they rounded the curve, they met a semi truck, and hit it, head-on.  They were all thrown from the vehicle.  Word of the horrific accident soon got back to the small mountain town.  A bunch of men rushed to the scene to help; Tom was among them.

He found his friend lying in the middle of the highway.  There was nothing he could do.  Her body was broken and twisted.  She was going to die soon, and he knew it.  He cradled her head in his arms trying to comfort her in her last moments.  She kept saying, “Help me Tom…help me!”, as she looked into his eyes.  Her words would haunt him forever.

Every young person in that car was swept into eternity that Sunday afternoon.

When the janitor was cleaning up the church the following day, he found the hymnal lying on the seat.  It was open, and on the fly-leaf were found the words written by the young girl, “I’ll take my chances…”

She did, and she died.  Not another opportunity to come to Jesus.  The Bible says:  “Today is the day of Salvation…NOW is the acceptable time!”

If you hear Jesus whispering your name…Listen!  For He stands quietly knocking at your heart’s door.  Ask Him to come in!

TODAY MAY BE YOUR LAST CHANCE!

By:  Anita Mondragon (as told to me by my cousin Tom Johnson)

Sometimes God Opens a Door

I found this post on a blog site called, Those Who Sin Differently. It was very encouraging to me. If you take it to heart…it will be beneficial to you as well! -anita

Those Who Sin Differently

Although also quoted elsewhere, many people know the phrase below from the movie, The Sound of Music:

When the Lord closes a door, somewhere He opens a window.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0059742/quotes/qt0425136

With a good team of script-writers, a self-aware hero or heroine in a movie (or theater production) can be nearly certain that things will look bad around the second act, but in the end, the finale will find them victorious and vindicated.

To be clear, this catch-phrase is probably too much of an over-simplified message about how God works (not unlike my over-generalized summary of every movie…ever).  It’s not actually quoted from the Bible.  However, the message that it contains can be a good reminder of how God leads us on a superior path, and He sometimes accomplishes that by preventing us from going in another direction (one that may look comfortable, but whose destination isn’t as great as what God…

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FRIENDS & CHRISTIAN FRIENDS

Here’s one from Lee.  Enjoy! -anita

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All of us have several friends, I’m sure. And, if you’ve been a Christian for very long, you probably have many Christian friends, no doubt. One thing I’ve observed in my life—and have heard this opined by several other Christians—is that, these days, most of my friends are Christians. It’s who I hang out with, who I seek to be with and spend time with. That can be a good and bad thing at the same time.

 

I enjoy and prefer being with Christian brothers and sisters—they likely reflect many of the same values, ideas, and lifestyle choices I make regularly. In fact, many non-believers say and believe things I find odious and unappealing. But there’s a danger that we become insulated from the world, safe within the walls of the “sanctuary” of friends we cultivate. Of course, the Bible teaches us to be in the world (clearly, that’s where we are right now) but not of the world. [Jn 15:19, 1 Jn 2:15] And if we are to be true to our calling of sharing the gospel we need to interact with the people who are in the world. [Is 12:4, Ps 105:1, Ez 3:17-19] So we need to seek a balance between spending time with other believers and with those who need to hear our testimony and the reasons for our love of Jesus. But that’s only part of the story.

 

I recently read an article on “Christian Friends,” written by Dr. James L. Harvey III, senior pastor of a church in Newark, Delaware. His point, in part, in this article is that, on the one hand, we can have many gratifying friendships with non-believers: “…there is a special joy in feeling that someone knows you, understands you, and enjoys your company.”

 

But, as he goes on to say, “… there is a unique spiritual basis for friendships between Christians that transcends what is possible with [non-Christians].” The essence of this, he says, is that “Christians don’t have some things in common; they have Someone in common.” I thought this was exceptionally well put.

 

One of the things that grabbed my attention hit me where I live sometimes. I’m a pretty gregarious guy and actually enjoy meeting and being with people, but there are times when I feel like I just don’t fit in with the people around me, and I feel isolated. According to Dr. Harvey, sometimes, even when Christians are together, the level of conversation doesn’t rise above that of discussing the weather, sports, or the latest news flash: “Sometimes Christians are lonely in the body of Christ because they have not taken the initiative to open their hearts to one another about their shared experience of Christ.” To me, this translates into failing to share with other believers how I came to know Jesus, what differences He’s made in my life, and what thoughts and ideas have been revealed to me daily from the work of the Spirit in my life.

 

When was the last time you were in the company of fellow Christians and talked from the heart about God’s work in your life. He IS at work in your life, you know. New things revealed; things God has done to help you, keep you safe, reassure you, comfort you in your hurts, show you His love. All of these things can be edifying to fellow believers. We all maybe need to open up more about the Jesus who died for us and works continually, even now, to love and intercede for us. Encountering Jesus isn’t a one-time event; it’s a lifetime engagement!

Lee Pierce

Door Slamming

I saw this post on a site called, New Hope for Dry Bones. It was so good! I wanted to share! Enjoy and be blessed by it’s words! -anita

New Hope for Dry Bones

My dad retired from General Motors. He was working at a new modern facility when he retired but a lot of his career took place in the old plant in St. Louis. Sometime, back in the seventies there was some kind of an open house there in the factory and dad took me to check it out. It was the only time I ever visited the place where dad worked.

I didn’t get to see the Corvettes being made because the factory had already been moved from St. Louis to Bowling Green, Kentucky. Dad said I would have just been all itchy anyway because the fiberglass the bodies are made of got on you just walking in the area they were built in.

I did get to see how the trucks went together. The plant was the biggest place I had ever been in. Dad took me around to the…

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