Sweet Adina, little angel of mine! :)

Oh Dear Father how greatly have I been blessed! What did I do to deserve such friendship, such love? I am truly undeserving of so much. And to find such resemblance of Your love here on earth on such an unexpected beautiful being! Oh, I met her when she was a child and I was a teenager. What attention was I going to pay her? But You had a plan! A beautiful plan for us. A plan of love and sweetest, honest, genuine friendship. Oh, everyone who knows her knows she is wiser than her years. Such a beautiful heart, such a beautiful girl! (Dear darling, since you read my blog you can know for sure I am crying right now with scrumptious tears of joy!) So, I don't know if you meant for me to post your words, but they are most wonderous to keep 'em for my own.

Oh, how I feel the necessity to post my thoughts on yours.
Hi there. How are you?
How's married life a year after the anniversary?
Here's something I've been working on...
You see, I've been reading A LOT about how pottery is made lately... Why? Well, because I've been reading A LOT Isaiah (especially the chap 29.)
Sooo... Let me get you in on what I've learned.
When a potter bakes a pot, he checks its solidity by taking it out of the oven and putting it on the floor. If it makes a ''thump'', it's not ready yet, and he puts it back into baking... If it ''sings'', it’s ready.

God measures our character every day the same way! Have you noticed? He intendedly compares us to pottery and He purposefully makes Himself the Potter.. The character of a person is also checked by thumping... And God knows we get thumped everyday.

Let me give you some examples:
Emergency calls. Calls that did not come at all. A too-bossy- boss. Grumpy husbands. Burnt meals. Flat tires. Darn-it-my-head-is-going-to-explode deadlines. Sickness that comes. Sickness that won't go away. Friends that disappear. Dirty laudry. Dirty dishes. (Yep, I read your blog. ♥). Traffic. Friends that won't get along. Moments when you're so tired that you can't sleep.
Those are thumps, my dear mother. Thumps are those irritating inconveniences that trigger the worst in us... (And the Lord knows that, I am the LOUDEST thumper of them all. Yep.)
We are caught off guard... We are not ready... They seem like small things, but ultimately they can bring the best, or the worst in us. We can explode or we can be the water that falls on that fuse.
Wrecked car. No vacations. Timeless days. PMS. Stomachaches. Headaches. Late working nights. Early working days.

Now... What is my answer? Do I thump? Or... Do I sing?
Do I sing a sweet, peaceful melody? Or do I THUMP THUMP THUMP?

''A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. What you say flows from what is in your heart.''
Luke 6:45
A good, well-placed thump reveals what's in your heart.
Your true character is not seen in saving someone from a burning building or by winning the first place in a triathlon... But it is seen in your day to day thumping. Thump. Thump. Thuuuuuuuuuuuuuump.
So... Dear mother... Seeing that I'm very much like you (and PROUD! :P) I believe that we do our fair share of thumping.
But what then? Then... We must learn to sing! And everything is possible with the Lord with a specialty in that exact thing!

And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons:
“My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
because the Lord disciplines those he loves,
and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son.”
a endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father?
Hebrews 12:5-8

And there are more and more! It's just a matter of looking in His Word and you will find all sorts of encouragements!
So what will you do tomorrow? And the next day? And a month from now?

Will we siiiing a sweet melody? I sure am ready to start! But remember, if we thump... The world is not over. God lovingly forgives us and wants us to be more like Him every day!
EVERY thump we make is included in His perfect plan.
Vamos a cantar, madre. Y el mundo nos va a escuchar.

Let's sing for Him each day!
Make tomorrow, and the next day, and next week, and next year WORTH OF ETERNITY!
Te amo muchisimo! De aquĆ­ al infinito

Dearest Adina,
WOW!!! Such a joy to have such a loving, encouraging, wise, thoughtful, smart, present, athletic, precious "daughter" like you. There is a God on the heaven's for only He could have made such a heart! My beautiful, I have so much to learn from you. We will! We will sing together!
I love you very, very much! yikes, tear again! :)

Weekly grattitude

Good morning Father,

Another week begins but I am truly grateful for this day. It's an oportunity to make this day, as my darling Adina would say, worthy of eternity. I feel very challenged this week. I have a ton of work and my husbands finals are coming up, which means well be up to our elbows! Why, then, so grateful for this week? I am excited to apply what I learned this friday with my dear sissters in Christ. I am challenged to apply a quiet and gentle spirit in this hard weeks to come, learn to be supportive of my husband, respectful, kind, diligente, and calm at my job, and hard working girl at my house.

So lets start that wonderful thank you list:
11* Skype. Why skype first? I am truly grateful I am able to talk with my mom and my sister!
12* My sister. I am grateful for the beautiful woman she is becoming in and out
13* A never ending pile of dishes to wash. (Yeah thats right, grateful for the good and the bad! Oh I hate to do the dishes!)
14* A hubby that helps with the dishes!
15* The Women's conference this friday. So edifying and challenging!
16* A mom that returns home from her travels safe and sound
17* The newborn twins and mommy safe and sound!
18* A long lost friendship beginning to mend. Can you believe we had coffee together?!!
19* An undeserving opportunity to serve in the music band during the conference.
20* The wonderful late night practices with dear Sarahi, Ivonne, Marcela, and Isis!
21* The new songs I learned in the conference and the one I got to sing. (Grateful even more for the whole auditorium singing so strong to the King of Kings!)
22* An encouraging letter from my Cristina (a.k.a Eunice!). For her being concerned for me and keeping me in her prayers.
23* The sweet fellowship with my sisters from church who I hadn't spend much time this year.
24* For Barb Roose and her coming to Tegucigalpa to teach us.
25* A wonderful anniversary. Glad to see my husband so happy.
26* For a time with Paolo and friends justing having fun. (I dont get to do that many fun things often.)
27* A wonderful letter for my anniversary from my hubby! (You see, he is not that good with words, but that letter moved me to tears!)
28* My new earings and pendant for my anniversary from the hubby too!
29* The new office. (I am so glad to be away of the rukus, fuzz, bad words, stressful environment from the old office. We might not have windows in the new office, but I am grateful for the much needed peace and quiet).
30* For my two co wokers who have become great friends.
31* The hability to make the hubby happy with my cooking skills (they are kind of recent),
32* A wedding cake tier lasting a year to enjoy it on the anniversary. Grateful to remember the darling friend that helped out with it, the sister that saved it, and the mother that worked on it til she dropped. Grateful to have those memories of my wedding cake!
33* Thank You, for althought I have a long way to go, my husband thinks Im beautiful all around.
My list could go on. But dear work is there waiting for me.

Dear Father,
Thank You for Your many blessings! Thank You for they are countless. Thank You for they are from You, for everything we have has been given to us from You. And You are good. As I told You in the beginnig, I want to make this week worthy of eternity, but I can't on my own. I am in Your hands and at Your feet.

I love You Father.


The beauty of a woman's heart part 4

Final Talk : Beauty from Ashes

Theme: God can create beauty from the broken pieces of our heart.

The term beauty from ashes seems contradictory. When something is set to fire, it starts to burn and desintegrate. Depending on how dense the material is determinates how fast it will desintegrate. But in the end when everythings is consumed, all that is left is a pile of ashes. The original form is unrecognizable.

Some of your lives might seem unrecognizable. There were certain events that began to desintegrate that life. At one point you looked around, and it seemed your life had become ashes. We can have one of three reactions: Give up and be depress, be bitter or angry, or take those ahes to God and let Him make them beautiful.

My grandma got married for the first time when she was 18. Her husband was a military and had my mother. But she was discontent with her life. She left her husband and moved to Ohio. A friend of her suggested to go on a date with her friend. My grandmother didn't want to go on the date. That man forced her and she became pregnant with my Aunt. When she was born, the doctors told my grandmother her child would not survive and they sent her home. This was many years before there was good medicine for new borns. But, by God's mercy, my aunt survived. Three weeks late she received a call to pick her child up. She then married the man who I knew as my grandfather. I learned many years later my grandfather had not been faithful to her and had cheated with her best friend. This broke her heart and make her become bitter. She spent alot of time in the hospital. This was because she was bitter, and she went through many surgeories. The doctors told her her bitterness was killing her. Until she realized only God could restore her, she was able to let go her anger and bitterness. If she would have not allowed God to repair her heart, she would not have lived the rich and full life she lived the rest of her years, and me and my brother and sister would have missed the blessing her life was to us. You see, when God healed my grandmother's heart, she develop a quiet and gentle spirit. She loved everyone she knew. She was known to cook for the sick. She was known to go and take care of those who were about to die. She taught me to serve in church, serving as a musician in the church choir for 30 years. She taught that a quiet and gentle spirit is a heart that can forgive. When my grandfather got ill after the divorce, not once but twice, my grandmother took him in and nursed him. It was a powerful example for my life.

Many of you have a broken heart. It might have been something that happened to you when small. Maybe a failed marriage. Maybe a loss of a beloved. Maybe a mistake you made. Or maybe you have been disappointed so much, you are broken hearted.
Do you believe it's possible for God to restore that heart? For Him to give you knew hopes and dreams? And the answer: YES! He can.
And if you are not broken hearted, listen and share it with those who are.

Isaiah 61:3
 3 and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the LORD
for the display of his splendor.

This words were about a coming time when God's chosen people would no longer suffer. They had been taken captive, beated, chased throughout the world, and their hearts had been broken for their mistakes. Isaiah wanted them to know that God would not only restore them, but do much more they could imagine. Think in the term "crown of beauty." Only kings and queens wear crowns. A crown is not something you buy in the grocery store and put it on. It is custom fitted for the user. So when the Word says we will have a crown of beauty, it means God will give us hopes and dreams for us.

For those struggling with a broken heart, you might not be sure of what I am telling you, for right now all you might remember is what you use to have. And you want that, but it is no longer there. But God wants to create beauty from what you lost.

Remember Jesus was crucified and buried in the ground. What did God do three days after? He rose Him up. God is in the business to raise that that was dead. An God wants to give you knew life after loss. Truth is there are some things we will never recover. The time has come for you to let that go and accept that it's gonna and put it behing you. It is time to turn your eyes to God and ask Him to put the broken pieces to give you a new heart.

When a plant has seeds, it drops those seed so they go into the ground and bring forth new plants. There is this flower (Banksia ericifloria) whose seeds only grow when they are heated by fire.

James 1:2-4
 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

When God lets us go through difficult time, and when we experience the heat and pressure, it's when God lets us see what parts of our lives are lacking. Isn't it amazing how God uses our struggles to bring us closer to him. Maybe you are not a woman of faith, but are struggling. Could it be that God is calling you to connect with Him in a closer relationship?

When I was thinking of this last talk, this next passage seemed to sum up our life, specially those who follow Jesus.

2 Corinthians 4:7-18
7 But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. 8 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 10 We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. 11 For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body. 12 So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.
13 It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak, 14 because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you to himself. 15 All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.
16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

When I think about this verse, it truly reminds me that I can be concerned with what is going on with this body. I could be concerned with the fact that I may not feel well all the time. I could be concerned my gray hair is starting to show. But this body will not last forever. So it is not important for me to be focused on it. But the Bible says He has placed eternity in my heart if I believe in Him. Si I must guard it.

The beautiful thing about being women is that we care for each other deeply.

The beauty of a woman's heart part 3

Place your hand over your heart. The heart beats all your life and you barely ever notice it. You only notice it when it starts racing. Our heart are very precious. Women's heart are very vulnerable. God created our heart to feel many things, a wider range of emotions and feelings. We are very impacted by the ups and downs of life. There has been a verse that I have thought of more than others.
Proverbs 4:23
"Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do comes from it."

We must prioritize protecting our hearts. It is the center of who we are and we must understand we must protect it. What does it mean to guard our heart? How do we protect it from the ups and downs of life? Seeking inner beauty of a quiet and gentle spirit with a foundation of faith, hope, and grattitude guards our hearts. It is essential for our lives,

Here is a gross picture of termites. Why are we seeing a picture of termites in a woman's conference? Well, termite live inside wood. They eat the wood causing damage. When you notice termites, the wood is too damage to salvage it.

Fear is like termites.We worry about something so long it turns to fear. And one fear becomes two fears. And one day we wake up and we realize we are afraid of so many things. Our lives are overwhelmed by fear? What are you afraid of?

Before we get that, I have a story to tell you, I am very afraid of spiders. VERY, very afraid of spiders. Last month I gave a talk about courage. And the production staff came to me and said Barb "you have to face one of your face." And they asked me to pet a tarantula. I said "NO!" So they said I had to do something courageous. They gave me a choice: Pet a tarantula or sky dive. Which one did I choose?

(We are seeing a video of her sky diving!! LOL)

I told you I was afraid of spiders! Who would be afraid of sky diving? Who would like it? It was not very scary for me, but I realized of a truth that time. There are more than a 100 verses in the Bible that commands us not to be afraid for God is with us. But we still are afraid, aren't we? Fear we won't have enough for the expenses, fear of illnesses, fear of never getting married or never having children, fear we won't be happy, fear our husbands will leave us, fear we will loose our homes. fear we will be left alone. And we spent time being afraid of things that havent happened.

When we are afraid our fear becomes very big, and we make God very small. Some of us worship our fears. How? We carry them everywhere, we speak of them, we think of them all the time. Instead of being thankful for what God has already given us, we worry for what hasn't happened. This hingers our inner beauty. Fear is like an ivy weed, that steals the beauty of everything.

I once was very afraid. My husband lost his job. I was afraid if he would get another one. But then I started worrying for food and expenses. I started being afraid we wouldnt accomplish our dreams. My fear became so great it began to show on my face. Is that someone who smiles? Is that someone you want to be around? Its definitely not someone with a quiet and gentle spirit. When we are fearful we are not kind, not respectful because we are angry. Fear is a very dangerous thing.
Something changed for me. There was a verse that I read that helped me deal with my fear. It might sound very familiar.

Phil 4_6-7
6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Didn't we just talk about guarding our hearts? Now there is alot in this verses. And for those dealing with fear, its time to hear and obey.

Step 1
Do not be anxious. What does that mean? It means dont be anxious. Is not rocket science! God says DO NOT BE AFRAID. God wants us to stop entertaining thoughts of fear. When you begin to make your problems bigger than what God is, you need to stop that thought, cut it off. Because the truth is God is greater than any trouble we can face.

Step 2
With prayer and petition,
This is where we sit before a holy God, and you tell Him about everything that has happened. Remember thanksgiving from our previous session? Its when we accept what God gives us, good or bad. This way we show we trust God with our lives. We trust He will do whats right for us even if the situation doesnt change.

Step 3
Present your request to God
God know what you need. But He wants you to tell Him. Many years ago during the time I was very afraid and I began to think of this verse in Philipians, we didnt have alot of money. There was a special ocassion coming up and I wanted to something special for my kids. We had food. And I had been reading this verse. But I still wanted a little extra money to do something for my kids. So I prayed about it and I told God of this special thing I wanted to do for my kids. So I laid in bed and prayed this little prayer. And I didnt tell this to anybody. And God had been gracious to give us what we need it. But I told God what it meant to me to be able to do this for my kids. When I went to work next day, I opened the mail and got a white envelop. It had my name. When I opened it up, someone had given me a gift of money. I still dont know who gave it to me. I cried because even thought God had given me what I need, He was gracious to give me the little extra I needed. I dont tell you this story to tell you to pray for money. I tell you because I want you to know God listens. And eventhough sometimes He doesnt answer, when we live with contentment and gratittude, God's blessing is wiht us.

Step 4
The peace of God that passes all understanding.
This is something I cant explain to you. If you have received it, you know it's not easy to explain, Its the kind of peace that sustains you, that allows you to be joyful even when the circumstance is hard. The peace of heart protects our heart. It's like good soil for our heart to grow. If you are dealing with fear, I encourage you to follow the instructions in philipians.
Stop being anxious, go to God in prayer, thank Him for everything He does, tell Him what you need, and allow His peace to fill you.

Now, when you say Amen! dont go back to worrying!!!!!
Dont loose God's peace being chasing your fears again.

I like the story of Esther. Esther had many reasons to be afraid. At an early age she was taken from her house to go live in the palace of the king. Imagine leave your home for a place you didnt want to go. I imagine she was very afraid. When Esther got to the palace, she was there because the king was looking for a new wife. She had to endure 12 months of beauty treatments. It must have worked, because the king found her the loveliest of all. It was not Esther's outer beauty that shined the most. Even thought her outer beauty got her chosen to be queen, but her inner beauty got her to save her people. Esther heard the plot against the Israelites. At first she was afraid and she tried to hide. But then her uncle presented her with a choice: Do nothing in fear or act courageously in spite of her fear. Of this story, I like the conversation Esther had with her uncle, and tells him she will choose to act and said: If I die I die, but I will go to see the king! Esther's inner beauty was what captivated the king. Eventhough Esther went before the king by surprise, she didnt go inside demanding what she wanted. She went to the king with respect and humility.

Sometimes we need to think about Esther's example. There are always going to be thing we are afraid of, but what we have in the inside will help us confront the difficult things we will face. When you are thinking of  a problem you have, ask
Is this problem something God is afraid of?
And then ask
If God is not worried about my problem, should I worry about it?
Ask yourselves this questions when you are tempted to be fearful. Our inner beauty is dependent on how we deal with our fear. When we choose to not let fear destroy our beauty holding to God's hope, we will be an example of courage and strength to the women around us.

The beauty of a woman's heart part 2

Foundations of Beauty.
When I think of that word, I think of make up. And I love make up!! I come from a line of women in my family who not only love to wear make up, but also sell make up. I was 13 when I got my first make up kit. And I would put it on really thick. My mom thought I was trying to look like a clown.
But one thing my mom taught me really early on is that the secret for a good make up, is have a good foundation. And there are alot of foundation: cream, powder, mixed. I've been in Honduras two weeks, and my skin got darker. But my make up didnt change and its hard to make it work!

It is very important having the right foundation for inner beauty. We are going to talk about three things for that foundation:

We need those three things for inner beauty to grow in our heart. Remember inner beauty is a quiet and gentle spirit. And that spirit wont come alone; it must have a foundation to grow.
Becaase God is the creator of beauty, those three foundations must come from Him.

The first foundation is going to be faith. Faith is the foundation on which we place our trust in God, and He begins to change and transform us so that we reflect His beauty inside out. Hope is the second foundation that reminds us whatever we face in this world, God's promises will hold us to persevere. Then there is grattitude. When we have grattitude in our hearts, we remember God's blessings in our life and we remember He is good in all things.

Before seeing them more closely, lets see what Jesus had to say about foundation. In this passage Jesus is speaking to church leaders who were very preocupied about their outside looks. So Jesus tells this story:
Mathew 7:24-27
 24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

There are two words that I want you to think about. Hear and practice! Hear isn't just letting words in one ear and out the other. Hear is that we are to listen and apply what we heard. There is a man who had a wonderful saying: "Too often we bring our body to church, but we don't bring our soul." When God's word is being given to us God expect us to apply it. We can hear God's words in many ways: at church, in the scriptures, a wise christian friend speaks to us. God doesn't expect us to hear His word every now and then. He expects us to listen to it every day. You wouldn't put a seed in the ground and never water it. In order for it to have a foundation, it must be cultivated every day.

In mathew 7, Jesus spoke of were two men decided to use as a foundation, rock and sand. In good weather, there isn't much difference between the both. But in a storm, it makes all the difference. A well built foundation makes the difference between a spiritual life that is thriving and a spiritual life that is struggling all the time.

The reason we are seeing faith first because it is the part of the foundation that holds everything together.
Mathew 22:37
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.

Jesus says we must love Him with ALL of our heart. Have you asked why he asked ALL of out heart? Could it be that He knew we would have struggles. But He knew we would have less struggle if we placed our love, faith, and hope in Him.
The first brick in a construction is the cornerstone. That brick or rock is critical for the stability of the building. If that one brick is not placed correctly, the rest of the building is not stable. If you try to make inner beauty without faith, it won't be the inner beauty God brings.
Those leaders Jesus was talking too, were good at say the right things, wear the right words, but they were trying beauty without God.
Do you realize faith is life giving to you? The reason for this is that Jesuschrist gave His life for you. He said He came to give full life. Jesuschrist came because your heart was dark. If you do not have Jesus in your heart, it is still dark. Dark with sin. Sin is what we do when we do things that do not please God. And Jesus came to wash that away from our hearts.
Biblical faith is this: believing that God will do what He says. A woman with a great foundation of faith relies in the promises of God no matter what. So who do you strengthen your foundation of faith?

First, know God's plan for your life. His plan for your life is this: to love Him and to love others.
Second, decide each day to make Jesus your example
Third, come to church with the intention of hearing and applying God's word.
Finally, surround yourself with other trusted christian woman who will encourage you and challenge you to grow in faith.

I want to encourage you to join a woman's group to share and to grow and to be encouraged. This is very important for a good foundation of faith.

Hope is the foundation that reminds us no matter what we face in this life, God's promises will hold us up and helps us endure so that we won't give up. This world is hard. There are things that hurt us. There is sickness. There is loss. Sometimes it feels overwhelming. Sometimes the problems of this life makes us want to stay in bed with the covers over our head. Sometimes life is just too hard.

Do you ever wonder if life will ever get easier? Sometimes we think that if it could only get easier...
But life won't get easier. It's a hard truth. So what do we do about that? Luckily, we don't have much to do about it We have hope because we have Jesus

Psalm 37:7
 7 Be still before the LORD
and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
when they carry out their wicked schemes.

When we hope, hope in God, we stop looking at the things around us. We stop expecting money or people to solve our problems. Instead of looking to solve our problems, we look up to heaven and know that God is there for us. Scripture says God will never leave us, never forsake us. He says He will help us endure.

Romans 5:
"..suffering produces perseverance, perseverance character, and character hope. and hope does not disappoint us because God has poured out His love.."

He pours hope in your heart when it doesn't seem to be any answers, when it seems no one else can help us. The verse continues: "That hope is in our heart because the Holy Spirit whom God has given
When woman dont have hope, they always find themselves looking back. But hope means we are looking forward. Remember what Paul said: forget what is behind us? Without hope, we die inside. Nothing dead is ever beautiful. When we have hope in God, we remember that the pain in this world, will pave the way towards a painless future in heaven with Christ. Do you know what I love of the promises in heaven? That God will wipe our tears. We cried today, this week. Can you image God taking our tears, and never crying again for pain?

There was a time I cried all the time. And it seemed I would never stop crying. We forgot the hope God had given me in His promises. When we dont have hope, we cant do what God wants us to do. Faith is believing His promises are true; Hope is waiting for them to happen.


Woman are never grateful with all of them. We are either too short, or too tall. Too skinny or not too skinny. curly hair that want straight, straight hair that wants curly. If I asked three things youd like to change of yourself, you would tell me ten.
If it isn't our bodies we are not happy about, it's our houses. We can see every little things that is wrong with it.  There is a certain place in my house that drives me crazy. Nobody else notices, but it's the only thing I notice.
Grattitude: when we recognize that all we have is from God, both good and bad; and we give thanks for ALL of those things, both good and bad. When we have grattitude, we are content.
We are going to talk about the apostle Paul. He had been through many, many trials. Once upon a time, Paul was part of an esteem religious group, a roman citizen, and had a life of privilege. But once he gave his life to Christ, it was never the same. Shipwrecked, beaten, imprisoned many times. And in those times, he wrote:
Phil 4: 11-13
11 I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

Notice how Paul repeats: "I have learned" two times. I have learned means he had to go through a process. It wasn't something that came to him easily. Learning means we have to become skilled in something that was not easy for us. It means we must practice.  We dont like to practice. We want things to happen immediately. Learning to be content is difficult. It takes concentrated time and effort in order to do it right. We must learn to face circumstances that force us to decide whether to be content or not. And its a process to choose to be content over and over again. That is the process to learn content. When we are content we do not let our heart be fixated for the thing of this world and we desire only what God gives.
There is a secret for grattitude.

Mather 6:33

Paul realized that he needed to focus on God and every situation and let God meet his need. Contentment is an inner sense of rest. A peace that comes from knowing that you are right with God and that He is in control of everything that happens. Paul was content in shipwrecked, imprisoned, hungry. He trusted in God's ability to meet his needs. Paul also learned to be content, because he gave thanks in all situation. Grattitude when things were good, and grattitude when things were not so good. When you read the new testament, notice all the times Paul says "I give thanks." One of the ways we learn to be content is to practice grattitude.

In the book, One thousand gifts, the author says how she lost her two-year old sister that was run over by a delivery truck. And she says how she saw her sisters body in the street and loose all faith. And that she struggled with believing God was good. And she said she came to Jesus when she read Jesus' story before His crucifixion. And she was astonished that Jesus, knowing he was going to die and be captured, said : "I give thanks." (Hey, I read the first chapter of this book. Only the first because it was the only available online. I haven't found it here so I plan to order it. However, I do read the author's blog I blog with her for grattitude post on Mondays and Walk with Him on Wednesdays. You can find link to her blog on my posts this days :P)

If we have grattitude, we are better equipped to face the things that will happen in our life. If we express grattitude for a situation in our life, it doesn't matter if the situation doesn't change. Maybe you are dealing with an illness that is not going to be healed. You are dealing with a family memeber in addiction that you cant change. you live in homes you dont want to, or have jobs you dont want! Is it possible to give thanks in all those situations? Is it possible to give thanks for your life, were you are right now, even if nothing else changes? That is a question that is hard for me. But Paul says we are to give thanks in all things.

One of the suggestions of the author of One thousand gifts is that we record the things we are thankful for.  She began to write one thousand things she was grateful for.

I want to share some things of my list for this week. Im only on number 73.
17) the Word anaranjado. I like the way it sounds
22) slype. (ME too!!)
..) air conditioning in a hot day in Honduras

47) Mango and avocados in Honduras
49) meeting knew friends
72) having loving sisters in another country

Write that list every week. Be grateful for the moment God has given you. Instead of wishing for things that you had, that list can remind you of what God has blessed you with right now.

Ask yourself, how is your foundation? Is Christ the cornerstone of that foundation?
Will you work hard to learn to be content? Will you learn to give thanks in the good and in the bad?
Do not do it alone. Find sisters that can take that learning walk with you.

I thank you for being our foundation. God, when we have faith and we have hope and gratittude for You have done for us, we know our inner beauty will flourish and grow just like You want it to! Lets remember to look to You to meet our needs. We thank you for being a good and great God. We ask You to make us beautiful on the inside. In Jesus' name we pray, amen!


true beauty of a woman's heart part 1


So, I just came back from a woman's conference in my church were we had as our guest Cedar Creek's Barb Roose. The conference is entitled "The true beauty of a woman's heart." I know many couldn't assist because it was pricy, but I'll gladly post the conferences for whoever might want to read!

I'll write the notes I took from the conference. (If the note is my thoughts or appreciation of the speech, I'll post in blue)

Women was God's final touch on creation! (What an awesome thought!)
When God created Eve, He created her with specific design and purpose. He created them to reflet a part of His image that no other creation quite could. He created women to reflect beauty.

If we were created to reflect beauty, why is it then that we struggle so much with this subject? Why do we not like what we see in the mirror and are constantly beeing bombarded by the thought that you should change what you see.

Here, she spoke alot on the subject of how we feel about our bodies and looks. I made a mental note on the fact that so many times I feel ugly, fat, puffy-eyed, red nose, messy hair... etc! And I'm always voicing this discontents with my looks to my husband, who always responds with a "I don't know what you are talking about, you are gorgeous." I had never realized how much I think of the subject of beauty and how much I think I am not beautiful. More importantly, I realized how I had never thought to bring those thought to the obedience of Christ.

Barb continued explaining the two types of beautys: 1) beauty from virtue: inner beauty, can't be bought or put on. 2) Beauty from adorment. outer, can be bought of paid for, put on... etc.
Beauty is God's creation; not ours. (loved that thought!) Beauty is God. When God lives in us, His beauty shines through.
1 Peter 3:3-5
3 Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. 4 Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. 5 For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to adorn themselves. They submitted themselves to their own husbands.

Worldly beauty is the seek to outshine others.
In the verse above, Peter is not telling women to not adorn themselves at all. He is exposing the two kinds of beauty and encouraging and challenging women to seek the inner one more fervently. And we come accross two words: gentle and quiet. Here Barb spoke how she is not quiet for she is loud and outgoing. She tells us how she once thought she should no longer speak. That experiment lasted a day.(I told her after the conference that had been me too once :D)

  • Friendly
  • hospitable
  • approachable
  • not rude
  • not bad tempered
  • quick to help
  • treats everyone with kindness
  • careful with her words
  • speaks encouragement
And she asked: "How are you doing with gentleness?" (I flunked! Yikes)

  • respectful in her heart and on the outside to others
  • not recentful
  • trying and searching to keep the peace
  • submissive (I loved her definition of this one. Submissive: actual worshipping to Gob by willingly obeying those He placed in authority over us)
"How are you doing with quiet?" (flunked again =S)

Barb then went to tell us the story of her dear friend Sue. Sue struggled with cancer for 17 years before she went with the Lord. During those years, Sue showed a spirit quiet and gentle. She always served at church, always had a strong smile, she would make others feel better when they felt sorry for her! And Bard asked her: "How do you develop a quiet and gentel spirit when in such pain?"
Phil 2:5-8
5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
6 Who, being in very nature[a] God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
7 rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature[b] of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8 And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!

Sue's answer to the question:  Imitate Christ!!!! (WOW!)
She follows Jesus' example!

We have to realize something: God knew we would want to decorate our outside. He left beautfil Proverbs 30:31 for us!
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
This fleeting beauty here is the external beauty. You see, women think that if they are beautiful in the outside, they will be admired, followed, and praised!!! So, How much time do you spend in your outer beauty, compared to the time spent in your inner?
Worldly beauty leads to highlight. When we highlight something, we want to draw attention to it. God wants people to be attracted to you not because you have highlighted your body, but because you have highlighted your heart.

Boy, do I have much learning to do! Lets get working on that beauty!!! Grow into that gentle and quiet spirit!!

Dear Father,
Thank You for the wonderful fellowship you gave this week and for the honor of allowing me to serve You, when I am so unworthy. I was feeling really admonished by how much I am missing in inner beauty and how I haven't worked harder at it sooner. I was glad the song we sang after the conference said "There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ" and realizing it is true! Thank You for exposing us to examining our hearts and its obedience and honor to You. Give and make in me a heart and spirit that is gentle and quiet!

I love you, merciful Lord!


Learning Quick and hurried can be good!

John 20

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. 2 So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”
3 So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. 4 Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5 He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. 6 Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, 7 as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. 8 Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. 9 (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) 10 Then the disciples went back to where they were staying.

Dear Father,

Forgive me for not continuing my study in the book of John. I always turn from the gospels when I reach the part of Your crucifixion. I use to think it's because I hated listening of Your suffering, but I see it is because my pride knew what those words would do to my flesh. After all, is it not Your Cross that compels us, saves us from sin, and brings us to our knees? I read this passage and was surprised of the new teaching in it. I would always focus on Thomas and how he wouldn't believe unless he put his finger in Your hand's wounds. I always thought I was such a Thomas, lacking in faith unless I saw; and everytime I read this passage I would pray I wasn't like him anymore and I could have greater faith.

Greater faith, huh? But as i have said in the past, I am a Peter. John got there first. He was probably younger, more fit, and faster. Yet he stopped. Peter never stopped. He got there after, but he did not stop. Right into the tomb without thinking, without fear. I play this in my head and, yep, that would have probably been me. I mean, Peter's imprudence is one of the reasons I relate to him. I have often asked You why You made me the way I am. Loud, bossy, extrovert, angry, talkative. I guess my character could be described as lead by its tongue and its impulses. I have seen many strengths from a character like mine. The only problem is that just as much as my strengths are visible, so are my weaknesses; probably even more noticeable. One of them, impulsiveness, acting without thinking. I see that in Peter here. No thought whatsoever! He is running to His Lord. He is not gonna stop and think what could happen to him, think if it's spooky to go inside a tomb, to think what others will think of him.

Again, my prayer is to be a Peter post-crucifixion. i gues, then, I should read the crucifixion and post-crucifixion passages more often too! Oh foolish heart of mine.

Fathe, help me be that kind of impulsive and imprudent. Quick to go after You. Quick to jump to where may! No thought in my mind, no doubt in my heart. Hurrying! Hurrying to meet You, hurrying to do Your will. Father, i bring my sins before Your cross with repent in my heart. Please forgive my transgressions against You. Others might be quicker than me. Others might have already gotten there. Place my sight in You, so that no matter if I am not fast enough, i don't stop! I keep going. Steady holding fast to You! Again, help me be less of a Thomas.

I forever love You.


My mother

Dear Father,

U_U... I have failed to faithfully write my gratitude post in time. Nevertheless, I will seek to always write it. Today I dedicate my post of gratitude to the most wonderful woman in the world.

10* My mother
She has never failed me in keeping her word!
How many mothers can say that to their daughters?
I only hope one day I can.
She has done it alone, all the burden her own,
yet there's a smile on her face and
no, not once given up, though no husband by her side.
She has the softest hands in the world,
no other caress I more desire.
her fingers through my hair sends all sorrows away.
She is very frail, a pill for every day.
where, then, comes all this strength?
she barely ever rests!
She is called by her children Super mom
Indeed more super than Clark Kent!
For everyday she saves us, everyday she holds us.
She knows what is important,
by example and word taught us of He.
your life gives Him glory, taught me to honor Him.
She comes into your room at night for she senses you are awake
and she sings her three little piggies song
that no matter my age, never fails to make me dream.
Yes I dream to be that last piggie,
that helps his sweet mother,
I dream to be the one always by your side.
I dream to one day hold you,
one day give you rest.
I dream to bring you joy
and live the life you taught me;
the life I was shown through your hard work,
your kindness, your longsuffering,
your peace and joy.
A life that stood the storms,
your childhood, your family, your marriage,
and came out of the storm victorious and strong,
out of the storm praising her Lord,
out of the storm worthy to imitate.
I know no one like you,
no one who has stood so much,
no one who has hold so much,
and done it with your smile!
How grateful I am for the mother I was given.
How grateful I am for the Lord Who gives her strength
How grateful I am, to You, Oh Lord
for right now, you hold my mother.
You give her rest
and You made her the mother she is!
She forever changes me,
brings my eyes back to You.
All I'm left to say to You, Father
"Thank You for my mom!"


That little string of light

I sat there in the dark of my room,
the only light from between the curtains shone on the bed.
like a single string of light.
I sat there looking at that string of light wondering
how small it was but it allowed me to see the rest of the room.
I felt its comfort, while the tears flowed down my cheeks.

The doctors let her know it happened.
She had been expecting it during that long, restless night.
Her mother was finally resting, she thought, and it made her glad.
Why then this heavy feeling over her chest?

We are grateful we are permitted to be with her.
The traffic-jammed ride to her mother's funeral,
the longing to be with her in such a time!
And we are finally there and
all of us from the office cand't find words to say.
They won't come close to the casket.
But she is standing by it all alone.

My shyness- no, pride won't let me console her?
A thought the Spirit whispers in my heart.
I stand by her and see her mother's peaceful face.
"She had already recovered," she speaks softly.
"I'm sorry." are all the words I can say.

I'm on my room that same night.
My heart is burden by it's many trials.
How can I cry for such a situation
when my friend just lost her dearest?
Is this how blind you are?

And that string of light in my bed
reminds my heart
that I have never been forsaken,
there is still light to be seen!
No, I have never been alone.
And what comfort is there for those who really are?
For those who do not know You?

And here your God says He holds you by the hand.
Then why are you, Oh my soul, cast down?
Where is your hope? Who is your help?
And sweet Jesus wipes your tears and says,
"Be brave, my child. Your Lord says to you!"

And again there is too much ME.
Have my eyes not been opened to the pain outside?
Has your Spirit not been stirred inside me
that those who go through loss may have a hope?
That their loved ones be written in the Book!
That they have a God to turn to!

That they may know You, is my wish.
Can You use me for that purpose?
I have much to learn.
Do not forsake me sweet Jesus,
but forever change me into Your image,
that in this world I may be a string of light.

Dear Father,
I had not written about that night. That night I scared my husband with my despair and unbelief. That night I failed to wait in You. A night were I had seen someone in real pain. Someone whose pain was an ocean to swim. And there I was drowning in my glass of water. I am sorry. I am grateful once more for Your Word and how it takes ahold of me. Again, I am sorry I sinned against You. Like Jesus prayed for us, protect me from the evil one.

John 17
26 I have made You known to them, and will continue to make You known in order that the love You have for Me may be in them and that I Myself may be in them.”


 John 15
18 “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. 19 If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.

Dear Father,

It's good that I read this beginning a week at the office. This week we are moving to a new office in a different building. I hope I can find another christian with whom I can have fellowship. It is hard to be in such a big company and not find a single christian. It is harder to try to coexist and get along with them when a lot of what comes out of my mouths moves them to reject me, call me old-fashioned and fanatic. Although, sometimes I love it, especially for what the verse says: "they rejected Me, they will reject you." It makes me feel I belong to You.

Colossians 1
10 so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12 and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you[f] to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.

I love Your Word. What would be of my life if I didn't seek Your word? Let this be my prayer all the days of my life. Let me come with joyful thanks to You, loving Father.

I was unable to write my grattitude post last week, but there is too much to be grateful for to let this post pass by:

~caring mothers that always call, even if the call is international and expensive.
~wonderful God that always brings mom safe home from all her trips.
~answered prayer of sold puppies
~loving husband to hold you when you cry because the puppies left :')
~sister's words of comfort when we skype and I cry.
~Jenny, who always calls and includes us in her plans. :) I love her so much!
~reunited with my brothers, Paolo and Tito. If only for a moment, I love spending time with them!
~Dennis, where we can unite to eat with darling friends and forget what hour it is again!
~a clean house, that took a lot of work but gave me and the hubby much needed excercise :)
~sharing a friend's daughter's birthday together
~my hubby's test week. it's hard so I'll start giving thanks for it right now
~unexpected blessings from our Heavenly Father Who always looks out for us!
~encouragement and light from Your Word
~desire in the heart to be closer to You. This sinful heart is not always with such disposition. Keep creating in me a clean heart.
~encouraging blogs with wise words and opened up hearts and lives!