I Began to Fear Growing Old.

I was reading a list of recommendations given by Pat Devilly a popular fitness trainer from Galway, on his post.  A line on the list reads,

“Spend time with people over seventy and under the age of six.”

Having reared fourteen children, I have spent much time with children.  I have to admit I have not spent much time with older people over the years.

After reading this Blog by Pat Devilly, I decided to pay a visit to an elderly friend.  Ten years ago she had two knee replacements.  She was very brave and recovered well.  Every night her sleep is disturbed by night sweats.  She has to change her night dress through the night.  I thought “Poor lady, she has to endure this hardship.”  I was humbled to hear about her difficulties but she continues enduring without complaint.
I began to fear growing old and with it failing health.

I was reading on Facebook recipes for being forever young.  Drink plenty of water, eat vegetables, don’t take sugar or processed foods, go for walks, garden, lose weight.  The list goes on and on.  I realized I would become exhausted trying to be forever young and eating lettuce to avoid pains and aches that many older people suffer.

I began to drink more water and my whole system reacted to the excess fluid.  I wasn’t well for days!  I tried to diet but failed miserably.  I try to go for a walk but other demands come first.  The weeds are flourishing in my garden!  The dreams of cooking wonderful dishes with the herbs from my garden has not materialized.

I decided to stop reading such articles on Facebook, I stopped drinking excess water, I eat when I’m hungry and don’t starve myself.  I will go for a walk when I desire, not because I should.  I will go back to gardening when I have the strength.  I will continue to wear the dress size I need to and not try to fit into a smaller size.  My body and mind were getting stressed with the fear.

I reminded myself of the scripture fromPsalm 91
“Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him;  He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.” (‭Psalm‬ ‭91‬:‭14-16‬ NIV)

God promises me a long life.  If I have any sickness, pain or any other trouble in the future God promises to deliver me from each one.  As for me I will enjoy my life each day and not live in fear.  God has delivered me from death by healing me from cancer.  He will continue to help me.

Blowing the Whistle.

I have faith in God the creator who reveals himself through the bible.  As I read the scriptures I find many promises God makes to those who believe that he exists.  He promises to reward those who diligently seek him.  Perhaps you don’t believe in God, or maybe you used to believe but through disappointments and hardships you gave up.  Try again.  Pray today and seek him with your whole heart.  He is there for you and a wonderful life of blessing for you and your descendants will open up for you.

God, revealed through Jesus, is the only God who promises blessings to our descendants to a thousandth generation. Exodus 20.  When I sought God wholeheartedly 38 years ago he revealed himself to me in many ways.  I prayed for a child and he answered me.  I prayed for my husband to believe in Jesus.  God revealed himself to my husband.  God blessed me with fourteen children because I believed that God would bless my children after me to the thousandth generation.
There is no other God who promises to bless us and our children after us.

Now in rearing my big family I have faced many difficulties.  For example, needing a home big enough, needing money to provide for my family or facing the opinions of people who thought I was crazy for having a big family.
Jesus said in this world you will have many troubles but be of good cheer I have overcome the world.  John 16 v 33

Psalm God promises to be with us in trouble and deliver us out of all of them.

When they call on me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them. (‭Psalms‬ ‭91‬:‭15‬ NLT)

In Numbers 10 God told Moses to instruct the people,

“When you arrive in your own land and go to war against your enemies who attack you, sound the alarm with the trumpets. Then the LORD your God will remember you and rescue you from your enemies.  The trumpets will remind your God of his covenant with you. I am the LORD your God.” (‭Numbers‬ ‭10‬:‭9-10‬ NLT)

I had been praying over some situation in my life for a long time.  I felt I had no energy to pray any more.  There did not seem to be an answer.  I read the passage above.  I did not have a trumpet but I bought myself a whistle.  I blew the whistle and I believed that God would act because he is true to his word.  I have made a covenant with him in believing and trusting God with my life, and he will keep his promise to be with me in trouble and deliver me out of it.  God brought about the needed change.   Sometimes one can blame others for the difficulty one is facing.  But it is the devil our enemy who is holding back the needed change.  God heard and moved my enemy the devil out of the way.

I was in holiday in Rostrevor, Ireland one summer.  We had been given the use of a home in a beautiful setting.  It was along a quiet road in the forest.  Many young couples would park their cars there at night to be alone.  One evening my husband went out with the older children to a music festival.  I was home with the younger children.  It was getting late and I thought I heard noises outside that made me feal uneasy.

I looked for my whistle.  I went outside and blew the whistle as loudly as I could.   I called on The Lord for help.  All at once five cars’ engines were started and sped off down the road as fast as they could.  They cleared off frightened by my whistle.

In England the policemen used to have a whistle to alarm trouble makers or to call for help.
Soon after my husband and family returned.  Help arrived.

An Inherited Brooch Brings Back Memories.

I was wearing a brooch on my coat lapel today.  It belonged to my husband’s mother.  I liked it because it was in the shape of a tree.  It caught my son’s eye as we were out for a walk.  He said “Is that the olive tree with all the branches around your table.”  He was referring to a scripture that described our young children sitting around our table.
Blessed is every one that fears the Lord; that walks in his ways.
For you will eat the labour of thine hands: happy will you be, and it shall be well with you.
Your wife shall be as a fruitful vine within your house: your children like olive plants round about thy table.
Behold, that thus shall the man be blessed imagethat feareth the Lord. (‭Psalms‬ ‭128‬:‭1-4‬ KJV)

We used to sing this Psalm often.  Abraham said “Let me count the number of leaves on it.”  He counted fourteen, the number of children we have.  I was excited and could not wait to tell Brendan.  I showed the brooch to him and he was pleasantly surprised as well.  He counted the number of leaves.  Yes there were fourteen.  But he looked again and counted six white leaves and eight green leaves.  We have six girls and eight boys in our family.

The brooch is inexpensive but it is priceless now.  It is prophetic.  Nannie had this brooch for many years.  I bet she never expected her son would have fourteen children.  I am wearing it in memory of her and all our children The Lord gave us.

Children are a blessing from The Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Psalm 127

We moved house recently.  Brendan has been working to get our home ready for visiting family and grandchildren.  We push ourselves to get one more job done, even though our bodies ache.  We take a break and start again.  We have a big house and it is a bit  lonely with just the two of us, after years of activity and bustle.  Our hearts ache as well when we remember our loved ones far away.

“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne?  Though she may forget I will not forget you.”  (‭Isaiah‬ ‭49‬:‭15‬ NIV)

Abraham returned from university yesterday; the first of the birds flying home to Ireland for Christmas.  Three more arrive on Friday.   I am blessed today as God reminds us of all our children we reared down through the years, in this little brooch.  They are returning home.  He has not forgotten us.

Lift up your eyes and look around; all your children gather and come to you. As surely as I live,” declares the Lord, “you will wear them all as ornaments; you will put them on, like a bride. (‭Isaiah‬ ‭49‬:‭18‬ NIV)

I will wear my brooch and think of God’s love and faithfulness to us.  Yes his promise to me will come true.  My children will return.

I received an e mail from a friend in Canada. She reminded me of Proverbs 13 v 12,

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life. (‭Proverbs‬ ‭13‬:‭12‬ NIV)

When I was suffering from cancer I had lost all hope in the future or my dreams and prophesies coming true. But God intervened. He had mercy on me and for his Name’s sake he healed me. Today my hopes and dreams are coming true. The brooch resembling a tree is an encouragement to me that my longings are being fulfilled, and that God is restoring my life.

There is life after cancer. I am staying alive.

We are Moving House. Do it Again, Lord.

 

 

“Be very careful never to forget what you have seen The Lord do for you.  Do not let these things escape from your mind as long as you live!  And be sure to pass them on to your children and grandchildren.”  Deuteronomy 25 v 9

After rearing our children in the big house God provided for us, Brendan and I realised over the past few years that it is taking a lot of our energy to maintain it.  Lighting the fires in the morning to keep warm, cleaning and doing household chores made me weary.

Our children advised us to downsize to a more modern house that would be easy to keep warm.  It is not easy to be released from the home we reared our children for the last fifteen years.  Our children have memories of  growing up here.  There is space for us to have family get togethers, and the grandchildren come to visit.  There is room for them to stay over.

It is not easy to start looking again.  Back in September I read from God’s Word I will provide a home for the poor.  Brendan and I were going to trust God, as before, to provide a home for us.  “Lord you did it before, do it again,” I prayed.  “You will not forsake me now when I have gray hair,” according to Psalm 71.

Now that I am old and gray, do not abandon me, O God. Let me proclaim your power to this new generation, your mighty miracles to all who come after me. (Psalms 71:18 NLT)

I did not want to move away from the area where we now live.  I would be happy to move to the country nearby.  We began to look at possibilities.  I did not have the energy to look at potential houses and then be disappointed if we were rejected.  We did try once, found a lovely house to rent, but the owner was not willing to rent to us.  I didn’t try any more.

Brendan and I visited Jerusalem earlier in the year.  I believe God’s Word that says he will bless us in Jerusalem.
Many peoples and powerful nations will come to Jerusalem to seek The Lord of Heaven’s Armies and to ask for his blessing. (Zechariah 8:22 NLT)
I went to the ancient site of the Wailing Wall and prayed there about many things.

When we arrived back home I got a call from my hairdresser.  She said I had a dream about you last night and I need to tell you about it.  The dream indicated we would be leaving this house.  She did not know our situation about wanting to move from here. This dream helped Brendan and I decide to move from here.  We were in agreement.  Before I was undecided.

We looked at Property Pal, an Internet site for house rentals.  I searched for houses in our local area.  There were a few houses to let in the country nearby.  I called the agent of one I liked.  He arranged a viewing that evening.

It turned out to be a house next door to our friend who had the dream.  Her brother owned the house.  It proved ideal for our needs and applied to rent it.  The owner agreed and we move there next week.

The house is called “Bright House.”  In case we had any doubts about our move God has showed us signs three times.   I was reading in the scriptures,

“It is strength that endures the unendurable and spills over into joy, thanking the Father who makes us strong enough to take part in everything bright and beautiful that he has for us. (Colossians 1:9-12 MSG)”

Tea bags and cologne.

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A song on the radio called “Bright Eyes”.

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We are in the middle of our house move.  Energy is low but morale high because of the Bright future God has promised for us.

God speaks today.  Listen for His still small voice if you are needing to make a Big move.

The Almond Tree in Blossom

When I was on holiday recently I had a wonderful vista of almond trees in blossom in the valley below where I was staying.  It is the first tree to blossom and it is a sign of spring, with hope of better days to come after the cold winter.  As the sun shone on the trees they looked as if they were covered with snow.   A friend told me that the almond tree is the first to blossom and the last to bear fruit.  The almond nut is a perfect food with many nutrients necessary for life.

I was encouraged to see the almond tree in blossom.  It reminds me that God will keep his promises.

Jeremiah 1 v 11 says

“I see the rod of an almond tree.  The Lord said to me you have seen well for I will hasten my word to perform it.” NIV

Ecclesiastes 12 v 1 and 5

“Remember your creator while the evil days come not and the almond tree shall flourish.”  NIV

I have returned home, and today I was pleasantly surprised by the warmth and brightness of the sun which confirms to me that winter is over.  I hear the chirping of birds outside my window as they make their nests in the ivy on the wall.   Crocus and daffodils are opening up.  I got my bicycle out of the shed.  It needs a bit of attention, like myself.  A few cobwebs blown away, a little oil on rusty parts, a touch of paint and it will carry me along some level country roads, nothing too taxing.  I will ignore the household chores as long as the sun shines.  I will be singing and praising God, like the birds.

So be encouraged those prayers you prayed, those cries you made during the cold dark nights of winter have been heard by your creator and he is answering.  He will bring forth the answer just as the garden cause seeds to grow.

Angela