Thursday, December 31, 2009

Farewell 2009

Can you believe it? This year is ending and a new one is beginning in less than 12 hours (EST)! As is my practice, I spend this day reflecting on what has passed and looking with sweet anticipation toward what 2010 will hold for me.

I know I haven't blogged for quite awhile. The many changes, inside and out, that life has brought left me speechless. As I will soon be celebrating my 57th birthday, I have had to recognize that there are just some things I can't do anymore. The bones ache and creak, my health, while generally good, needs much more attention and Lord knows that as much as it hurts 30 minutes of exercise everyday is the best way to stave off the inevitable aging process.

Being out of work and not able to find work has been a trial. I praise God for the loving support of my husband, family and friends. I am truly blessed beyond measure! Why, even as I write, two of my grandchildren are nearby! And because of their visit, we had our very first LIVE Christmas tree with all the trimmings, that heavenly evergreen aroma and even the joy of the mess!

Being out of work has also had some great benefits!!! With more time, I have been blessed to serve more often at my church – Church Online !!! Talk about blessings! With serving came new friends, some opportunities to mentor others, and most of all a closer walk with my Lord and King!

Looking ahead I have a few goals. One is to really WORK on my ministry – Abiding Ways . For the few who have previously signed up…please forgive my extreme negligence. After the family departs for home, I hope (and please pray) to implement all that God has shown me to do. While the concept has been "out there" for years, I often allowed the circumstances of living in this world to overcome my desire to teach. THAT is going to end-God willing. My "word to live by" for this year is INTEGRITY. I pray God will hold me accountable to this aspect of character.

Another goal that I really would appreciate prayers for is to quit smoking! Sadly, this is on my goals list every year in recent times and it is long past realization. My "quit date" is on my birthday (2/3) so if you and I should have contact—ask me how I'm doing, OK?

Other lesser goals include getting rid of some of the clutter around here; actively doing what it takes to get/keep my diabetes under control (and going to the M.D.); actively pursuing my custom built Bible Studies plan and grow in grace, knowledge and understanding of my God and His Word. After all, how can I teach others effectively if I don't learn it myself? Lastly, I will again attempt to read through the Bible every day this year. My Logos library has a devotional that I'll be using.

Finally, my verse to live by is Micah 6:8 and do what the Lord requires of me.


Numbers 6:24-26

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Adjusting to change...

This has been an interesting week! As I continue to adjust to the changes of life and the heart pains of the struggles of my loved ones as well as my own, I have been reminded over and over that God is the same all day, every day! (Heb. 13:8)

I spent Monday in serious self-examination...a scary thing for sure...and came to the major conclusion that I needed an attitude adjustment! So, fine, a good place to start, or so I thought initially.

Later in the week, with few exceptions I fell back into some of the less satisfying but most time-consuming activities since the changes and for a time, remained there. How easy it is to slip back into negative behavior, and the self-recrimination that comes with doing so! So much for adjustments.

Thankfully, the Lord has shown me much from His Word this week about His promises and that His power is made perfect in my weakness. And just how weak I really am, especially when I forsake my personal disciplines via procrastination and prayerlessness.

Much of my reading has been in Romans this week. Such a rich letter! In it there is much to meditate and ponder as well as practical instruction, especially for this prodigal daughter!

During this adjustment period it is right where I needed to be! So much of the "basics" with practical instruction that just happens to deal with much of what I've been struggling with.

At the heart of the entire letter is one passage Rom. 1:16-17 and as I read this, I had to ask myself seriously how much I believed that I was forgiven? Further reading throughout the week assured me that I am, for even though I was in lackadaisical fellowship with my Lord, I hadn't lost my faith in Him. And as previously cited in Hab. 2:4 and throughout scripture-our faith, weak as it may be, is counted as righteousness in God's sight.
In one of the devotional commentaries that I use, the writer explained that this means that when God looks at me (even when I am hiding, He sees), He sees Jesus-the perfectly obedient example of righteousness! He doesn't see my straying off the path, or the stubborn neglect of quiet time, or even the laziness inherent in my running and hiding in television. All He sees is Jesus in me!

How marvelous is that!!! And what a catalyst for the heart-wrenching desire-to change my attitude, my outlook on life as it is and to look ever more devotedly to Jesus.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Atonement, Change and Calling

I've been MIA again as I adjust to a multitude of changes, a plethora of personal issues, and most of all a lot of bad choices. My apologies to those who have signed up for the 3D Online class. It IS on the way - just so terribly behind schedule that I am ashamed.

The last few weeks have left me with so many questions and silence from God on most, if not all of it. Admittedly, I confess that His silence made me angry and frustrated and so, I began to slip out of my devotional and prayer time..NOT RECOMMENDED. So here I am, trying to get back to who I am.

Tomorrow (or more correctly tonight at sundown) is the beginning of the solemn Jewish holy day Yom Kippur. You may know it also as the "Day of Atonement" The text is Leviticus 16 for those of you who may be interested.

Being a Jewish Christian, I still set this day aside for fasting, prayer and a mitzvah, or "good deed". In the past, I used to grow my hair VERY long and the day before, would get it cut and donate to Locks of Love. In more recent times, I will give to the local foodbank or volunteer somewhere when possible, or just look to the Lord to lead me where He wants me.

Please keep in mind that Yom Kippur, I believe, was ordained by God for the Jews and pointed toward Jesus as the One Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. (Read Hebrews 9-10). It is a personal choice and calling that I return to my ancestral heritage, to honor God and that heritage. Blessedly, as Christians we are no longer under the law!

This year, however, with the many changes in my routine and a lot of family issues on my heart and mind, I hope to just get back to who I am. In the midst of all that has transpired in recent weeks, I lost sight of God, wandered away (or maybe RAN?) and found myself in a pit that seemed almost impossible to climb out of. And then last week I was confronted head on with my behaviors and actions in a message by Pastor Craig. It was one of those times when I felt like God was talking to me, and spanked me, hugged me and sent me to "time out".

So, as I prepare my heart and mind and spirit for reconciliation and return to the joy that is found in relationship with my Lord, I ask for your prayers, your forgiveness if I have let you down in some way.

I am back to serving at LifeChurch Online 3 days a week. Hope to see you there!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Wrestling with God

(Gen. 32:22-32)

I am comforted by scripture in knowing that I am not alone in the trial of the past few weeks. That Jacob, a prominent patriarch, also has done so assures me that it isn't sin.

The last few weeks have been a strange trial! I was conflicted in my calling, wondering at why I didn't want to go to the job I really do love. Torn between my love for God; desiring to serve Him full-time and my responsibilities to my family, my employer, and ministry. It is definitely one of those "rock and hard place" conflicts.

I poured my heart out to one of my sisters, who had asked a simple question about something totally unrelated...even considered calling my LC Online pastor. Prayed, fasted, prayed some more and then God spoke in a big way!

I spend a lot of time in devotional readings, using a number of sources including "The 365-day devotional commentary" by Lawrence Richards.(via my Libronix/Logos library). "Our Journey" (Walk in the Word) and "Daily Bread" (RBC Ministries). One day last week collectively, these three brought an answer and resolution to the battle within. I was told by God "not now, Donna, maybe later"

Ultimately, my will and God's will were at odds. I wanted to serve Him full-time, be a great teacher of His Word, have a successful website ministry, serve more often at Online, and put into action all the great ideas I had, including going back to school via Moody. The problem for me was "time". With work, there just wasn't enough time and energy in me to do all I wanted to do. Because my beloved is not yet a believer( but I have hope), his reception of such a calling would be less than excited. And what about funding, and the discipline to do all that I wanted? I had to admit that I am not the most focused person when it comes to the hard work involved (recent notable is a scheduled class online that has gone by the wayside-and a general lack of website updates).

Taking all of this into consideration as well as some specific direction from scripture, I realized that while my heart is in the right place, the circumstances were not. I had some help from Luke-(Luke 10:38-42) reminding me of the "Martha syndrome" and that being "busy for Jesus" isn't the same as serving Him. Also relevant to my conflict was Heb. 4:9-11 which talks of "resting from my own work" and entering God's rest...and lastly 1 Cor. 7:20 -remaining in my current circumstances.

So, for now, the web ministry is a priority, and going slow at it too! The 3D Online study is beginning on Sep 12, and I've been asked to do a study on the book of Luke which is a possibility. I will start classes at Moody spring semester-I think (depends on finances at the time-but trusting God for more specific direction) and I will keep working at my job at CUNY until they throw me out the door.

One of the bigger lessons I've learned is that God has His plan for my life, and will direct me. My ego and pride of knowledge got in the way of hearing Him for a time. I'm also re-evaluating my use of time and the roles that I play in daily life.

I was flattered and humbled while serving at LivePrayer this last Thursday, when one of my fellow workers remarked that I was an important contributor to the ongoing ministry. It was like a smooch on the cheek from the Lord! And so it goes.

Other thoughts

This week marks the 40th anniversary of a music festival called "Woodstock". I was 16 at the time, definitely a "hippie" with long flowing hair, hip-hugger bell bottoms, and a leather-fringed 1/2 vest as my outfit. I was also "a little bit preggers" with my first. I didn't attend as I was in California and dealing with how to tell my parents and my boyfriend, who had just enlisted in the Navy. We were married later that year, and had 4 beautiful children, tho we divorced after ten years.

What I remember most is the music of that time. And the spirit of love and freedom. During, or soon after--can't remember, there was something else called "The Jesus Movement", and a pastor named Chuck Smith who began "Calvary Chapel". About ten years later, at the suggestion of a guy I liked, I attended the first Calvary Chapel in Las Vegas, NV where the pastor (Pat ______) was teaching on the book of Revelation. Soon after, I took that walk that changed my life --and where I reclaimed a true spirit of love and freedom that can only be found in Jesus Christ.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Gods Providence

I know I've been MIA for a couple of weeks, more on that later.

First I'd like to share about a few things that happened over the last few days. For some time I've had this vision for my website ministry (which has sadly been neglected of late). But like most projects, a vision without direction soon fades. I have been seeking the Lord's direction for some time!

Thursday, I managed to get home before my usual 7PM so dinner was earlier which meant that doing my nightly social network and email reading also began earlier. Mind you, this is highly unusual. I was planning on finally being able to logon for Lifechurch and see the first in the "At the Movies" series at the 6:30p Experience. Just before then, I was going through my FB/Twitter posts and saw Suraj's tweet that LivePrayer was in need of help. Being an LP servant, I quickly logged on to the team sites.During service, I got only four requests, two were from curious or obnoxious folk who didn't say anything and soon closed out but TWO were from wives needing prayer for direction as they were both married to men who have not yet come to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Being wife to one who does not share your faith is a wonderful, trying and very special ministry. My own beloved husband is not just "not yet a believer" but a self-labeled atheist who lovingly makes fun of my "foolishness" and illogical faith. I am blessed in that, at the same time he knows how important my faith and practice is to me. We do have some pretty boisterous "discussions" at times.

So to go on with the story...I have, for some time, been seeking God as to what direction my personal ministry should take...and after the LP session above and a lot of prayer I believe that the focus may be to disciple, pray for, and minister to those who are in simlar circumstances as my own. In other words, to other women like myself who are "unequally yoked" as Paul said in 2 Cor. 6:14. While Paul's context is different than being married to one who isn't a Christian , it is often the connotation in pre-marital pastoral counseling.

Blessedly Peter gives some short sweet advice to those of us who find ourselves in this place (1 Pet. 3:1). The absolute best guidance for us is found in 1 Cor. 7:10-17 --and this is the word that I have followed.

Unfortunately, there will be trials for those of us married to "not yet believers". I married my husband (after widowhood) at a time when I was not walking on the narrow road, but had strayed - think "prodigal daughter" : ). As a result there has been some guilt, and I confess also to some rationalization. After all he IS Jewish. And so, to get to the point--I believe that the Lord is telling me that my primary ministry focus should be to others like me.

My beloved and I have been married for over 11 years now and with his almost militant atheism I have learned a LOT about how to love. As always my hope and daily prayer is that he will someday enter into the lovelight that is Jesus. Until then, I have learned that the best advice is to not preach...but "be Jesus" for him. After all, it's not up to me-but is in God's hands.

So, what do you think? Are you married to one that doesn't yet know our Lord? How often does this come up in your acquaintances? What do you think of the concept?

Where have I been?

My grand-daughters (ages 11 & 7) and niece (14) landed on July 2 and "Grandpa Scott" and I made plans for all kinds of fun stuff. We went to Coney Island and saw Ringling Bros. Circus. We saw a fascinating "Gazillion Bubbles" Show. Rode camels at the Bronx Zoo and visited the SonyWonder Technology Lab. All things that we thought they would enjoy. While I believe that they did, you know what their favorite thing to do was?

"Gramma, can we play on the computer?"
Imagine this: Three young ladies, in NYC-and all they want to do is sit in our small back office/spare room and log on to so they can maneuver into a single virtual room and do stuff! It was a private laugh between my husband and I as we are also geeks and spend a lot of our own free time in front of computers.

They DID enjoy their visit to F.A.O. Schwartz-the hallmark NYC toy Store. As we all went from floor to floor, including the giant piano (from the movie "Big") we thought that, for sure, this was going to be a costly shopping excursion. However, of all the toys, and games and other diversions, they were fascinated most with the "old fashioned" candy--and after $15.00 worth of sweets, we left.

I loved watching the girls play together, and was secretly pleased that they enjoyed computers (like their grandma/aunt) but the greatest pleasure for me was seeing things through their eyes. As Jesus said, we must have faith and be as "the little ones"(Mark 10:15)

On Sunday July 12, we went to the "unveiling" of my beloved friend (and mother in law). In Jewish tradition a year after one is laid to rest, their monument is blessed and "unveiled". I was pleased to read "The Excellent Wife" from Proverbs 31:10-31 in her honor. I miss my friend.

Of course, last week was playing catch up at work. The down side of taking time off is that the work missed is waiting.

Abiding Ways website progress

With all that has gone on, there was no work done for the last couple of weeks on the teaching ministries. I am so far behind!!! I am inclined to believe and trust that all things happen for a reason and have shed the guilt inherent in missing deadlines as a project manager and just trust the Lord.

I have given a lot of thought to the teaching and classes that I want to offer, as well as features and needs etc. So, the weekend is putting it "out there", including something especially for the focus ministry for the "spiritually single".

As things happen, I hope and pray also for volunteers. Especially ladies out there.

Life in general

God is good therefore my life is good! My personal studies are taking me to new places as well as revisiting "what I know". I am paying much more attention lately to Scripture memorization. I am learning more about Jesus! Drawing nearer to Him everyday. It sounds a bit funny especially as I've been a Christian for almost 30 years. One thing that I find myself doing more of is just trusting God, even and especially with the little things of daily life. Everything of late just seems to be going better. It's hard to explain but it just is!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Help Me Understand, If You Can?

As I sit here and marvel at the multi-network news coverage of the Michael Jackson Memorial, I am puzzled, amazed and curious all at the same time.

Before I continue-I want to let any possible detractors know that I, as many millions, loved his music, his dancing, his talent. Like so many of my generation, the Jackson Five was one of my favorites, and I blasted "Beat It" and "Billie Jean" and marvelled at the short film music videos "Thriller"...and my personal favorite "Smooth Criminal".

That being said and settled, I am a little distressed at the big deal and massive coverage of his memorial. I am witnessing L.A. close down highways for the caravan to Staples Center--in California, a state that, due to budget shortages, is discontinuing services to the poor, and cutting way back on educational programs. This spectacle is costing the city of L.A. about 3 million dollars!

Network news and other major media outlets have had almost 24/7 coverage since MJ died...almost 2 weeks ago. That so many are out of work, soldiers are dying in our wars,
kids are going to bed hungry and people are homeless in the wealthiest country in the world seems secondary to this entertainer. I really had to stop and think about why this is. Why are people focusing on this when there are really IMPORTANT things that could make better use of their time and resources. Where are the priorities of those who have fallen into the manufactured mystique of this man. If you know, please help me understand.

I wonder if they have examined this as they stand outside the memorial venue just to "be there". Don't they have a life, jobs, children, anything MORE important to do than mourn a man who, while generous, was just a man. Don't they realize that his generosity was made possible because his fans paid big to be entertained. In effect, we, as fans, made him able to be generous.
Doesn't anyone get it? Don't they know that its all about $$$. And not for any one of those millions of people who really have need.If any one of them died, would MJ come to their funeral? Would L.A. close the freeway for their motorcade? I think not.

Out of respect, I won't bring up the weaknesses and negative publicity surrounding him and his lifestyle and even his death. NO one is perfect. And now, MJ is going to stand before his Maker and ours. In the end, he's no better or worse than any of us he stands before God. I really wonder what God thinks of the big deal being made. Please...someone, ANYONE-is it me that is it clueless?
Heb. 9:27

Monday, June 29, 2009

Back to Basics

Last week I found myself so into keeping up with Tweets and Facebook and other social networking tools that I lost myself! I was so involved in reading and responding to tothers that before I knew it, time had flown by and things I wanted to do, other than this didn't get accomplished.

I really wondered at that and came to the conclusion that this is one of those things that as Paul said is "permissable but not beneficial"; for me anyway. (1 Cor. 6:12, 1 Cor. 10:23). So, now these things are on a schedule of sorts. I found a program/plug-in for MS Outlook called TwinBox that lets me store up and peruse on my time. It helps. Don't mis-understand. I really enjoy these things-they make me feel "connected" and in touch with everyone. I also understand that for some, this is part of their work and/or ministry. But for me-it is something that needed to be trimmed and tamed.

Along the same lines, I've lost sight of some of the basics of my faith as I do the work of building my little website ministry. It is hard work and take up a LOT of time. Time stolen from my time with the Lord. I could rationalize and say "But its His work"...and that would be true. But how good a job can I do if I don't keep in touch with the boss? And how easy it is to lose sight of who the Lord is.

So, this week my first priority is to re-visit who Jesus is; biblically, historically and personally. Sort of like a second honeymoon! I truly have missed that "first love" feeling.

So, where did I start? In the book of John, of course. John 1:1-4 reminds me that Jesus was, is and ever shall be as the "logos"; "the WORD". Did you know that John actually borrowed this term "logos" from greek philosophy? It was a term used to describe the "all encompassing, uncomprehensible Creator".

That is my Lord! That is my King! And I think that is where I will dwell for awhile. Its a lot to meditate on. And just think, He, the Word, is my friend.

Sunday, June 21, 2009


I have been, and am blessed to have quite a few father figures in my life. Tantamount in my thoughts today is my dad, Chuck Brode (Charles M. Brode Feb. 4, 1930-Sept. 23, 2003).

I was a "daddy's girl" for sure. I looked like him and more than anything I wanted to please him. I think my fondest childhood memory is hanging out with him while he worked on one of our many used cars. Sometimes, he would even let me, a 10 year old, help him. While he was tweaking the carb or adjusting something or other, I would get to start the car and push on the gas. "Just a little harder, Sissy" or "Be sure to let go of the key after it starts".

Dad wasn't only a mechanic and a former stock car driver, he was a macho construction worker, and later a fine wood cabinet maker. With these occupations also came the "payday party" and afterward, the tensions of Mom and Dad arguing about his drinking. Needless to say, my own perception of my father changed as I grew older and more aware of his character flaws. Hero worship ceased about the time I graduated high school.

In later years, Dad also recognized that he was an alcoholic and at the time of his death he, with the help of "Bill Wilson" had been sober for almost 30 years. Even so, as his health allowed, he was active in Alcoholics Anonymous.

My greatest and last memory of my dad was the time I spent with him right before he left this world. Presumably for a short time, I'd gone to stay with him while he recovered from one procedure and prepared for another. At the time, well, I just didn't know that it was a "good bye" time.

The "two weeks" turned into almost 3 months. During that time, we more or less got into a routine. Dad was also the caretaker for my uncle who lived in the same senior complex. Uncle had had a stroke and needed help preparing his breathing treatments. Now, in addition to running errands, I had taken over this task. I was also blessed to have my own children around to help me! And the joy of grandchildren too. All were a help to me and even made sure I got out of the house!

During this time, my dad and I surpassed the father-daughter relationship. We talked politics, health, computers and of course, faith! After a study time, my dad said "Sissy, just so you know, I believe the same as you."
"I know Daddy, I walked with you when you made the altar call, remember?"
"Yes, but ...." (pause), "I just wanted you to know"

Soon after, Dad went into the hospital, and well, never came home. To this day, I hang onto this brief conversation, knowing that when I am called, he'll be there to greet me.

My beloved Scott: Thank you for being such an awesome example to/for my children and grandchildren! A leader, a counselor, a listening ear. Whether you believe it or not, you're God's most precious gift to me!

Most of all I am a child of the KING! Pastor Craig presented an awesome image of our Father God last night. You can see it again at Church Online

Scripture has LOTS of references to "father". My favorite is the one Jesus used: abba.

 ἀββᾶ* (→ πατήρ)
B. ἀββᾶ in Early Christianity.
As concerns the usage of Jesus, the probability is that He employed the word אַבָּא not merely where it is expressly attested (Mk. 14:36) but in all cases, and particularly in address to God, where the Evangelists record Him as saying ὁ πατήρ, πάτερ, ὁ πατήρ μου, πάτερ μου, and even perhaps πάτερ ἡμῶν. In so doing He applies to God a term which must have sounded familiar and disrespectful to His contemporaries because used in the everyday life of the family. In other words, He uses the simple “speech of the child to its father”.
When the Aramaic term is used in the Greek Epistles of Paul (Rom. 8:15; Gal. 4:6), there may well underlie it a liturgical reminiscence, possibly the beginning of the Lord’s Prayer. In any case there can be no doubt that the use of the word in the community is linked with Jesus’ term for God and thus denotes an appropriation of the relationship proclaimed and lived out by Him. Jewish usage shows how this Father-child relationship to God far surpasses any possibilities of intimacy assumed in Judaism, introducing indeed something which is wholly new.
(from Theological dictionary of the New Testament. 1964-c1976. Vols. 5-9 edited by Gerhard Friedrich. Vol. 10 compiled by Ronald Pitkin. (G. Kittel, G. W. Bromiley & G. Friedrich, Ed.) (electronic ed.) (1:4-6). Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

abid•ing \ə-ˈbī-diŋ\

Someone asked me the other day why I had chosen "Abiding Ways" as the name for the ministry.

After a few moments of thought, I explained that my nature is to always have a goal to work toward-and long ago this awkward, old-fashioned word popped out at me while reading my "life verse" John 15:4. At the time, all I had was a King James version. I realized that this was my personal goal as a Christian. To ABIDE in Christ as He commanded.

As I grew in the Lord, I discovered that the word used in the original language was μένω and that the richness of the word was so much more than what I had thought - and consequently not just a means to an end, but a lifetime pursuit.

Today, I am still working toward that goal, and the greater goal which Paul described in Philippians 3:14: I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (NASB).

This week has been an especially challenging one for me. I ask for prayer for my son, Eric. The Lord knows the circumstances.

Below are a few references for the intellectually inclined that have directed me along the way.


: enduring,
continuing 〈an
abiding interest in nature〉
(Merriam-Webster, I. (2003). Merriam-Webster's collegiate dictionary. (Eleventh ed.). Springfield, Mass.: Merriam-Webster, Inc.)

3306 μένω [meno /men·o/] v. A root word; TDNT 4:574; TDNTA 581; GK 3531; 120
occurrences; AV translates as “abide” 61 times, “remain” 16 times, “dwell” 15
times, “continue” 11 times, “tarry” nine times, “endure” three times, and
translated miscellaneously five times. 1 to remain, abide. 1a in reference to
place. 1a1 to sojourn, tarry. 1a2 not to depart. 1a2a to continue to be present.
1a2b to be held, kept, continually. 1b in reference to time. 1b1 to continue to
be, not to perish, to last, endure. 1b1a of persons, to survive, live. 1c in
reference to state or condition. 1c1 to remain as one, not to become another or
different. 2 to wait for, await one.
(from Enhanced Strong's Lexicon (1966))

Monday, June 8, 2009

Online religion

I spent a lot of my weekend continuing work on Abiding Ways-my personal online ministry for Bible study and fellowship. Sorta like a small group or church but "always open".

It is a LOT of work which is likely why I took so long to get back to it, after having been invaded well over a year ago. This blog was the beginning. The last few days have been spent setting up a few things, primarily getting Moodle set up. This was especially fun (yes, I'm being facetious) because I had never used it before and like most everything I do, I was learning while doing. So far, it has been a good experience and I hope readers will visit the site and let me know what they think. Everything is, of course, free. I have subscribed to Google's AdSense both here on the blog as well as on the site itself. Does anyone have any experience with it? I don't want to make a million-but perhaps to just defray some of the costs inherent in any personal website that has the space for the ministry. In time, I hope to also have Amazon and CBD links but this is, after all, just the re-birth.

At the time this ministry was first conceived( Feb 2002) there wasn't a lot of online fellowship, resources etc. I was in the throes of post 9/11 depression, having just been laid off, at my Wall Street job. I felt the call to minister, to teach, and to have a place where agorophobic folks like me could meet to study, pray and fellowship from their computers. I also don't drive, and am blessed with a wonderful husband who happens to be an atheist so there is/was a lot of different motivations for me. The Lord had provided the opportunity and the time so I got to work! Quickly I became discouraged as I realized how little I really knew about web dev and what it really took to get a ministry going. Anyway, here it is over 7 years later and I'm getting back to where I belong.

In that time, I realized that there are a lot of web places now, for study and worship and fellowship. The "stall" in my ministry came as I battled with pride and discouragement. After all, what is my measily site? THEN the Lord spoke to me in a big way-sorta like "If you build it, they will come" only my field is a lot bigger than a baseball diamond. Ultimately, in that respect, I've come to understand that even if no one ever comes, well, its ok because I'm being obedient to God and perhaps, according to His will, someone, someday will show up and meet Jesus! In the meantime, it is my job to trust and obey.

OK-so where am I going with all this? To the ministry of

Two years ago, while I was again wandering in the wilderness of 'purpose" I picked up a book called "Chazown" by Pastor Craig Groeschel. This led me to investigate LifeChurch and "try it on for size". I had been looking for a church home for years and never found a peace about it. Initially it was kind of awkward for me as there wasn't the same connection as I had always previously experienced in worship but the teaching message was right on so I continued to drop in. In recent months I have started participating (sporadically) in a LifeGroup that meets on Friday nights online at 9P EDT and serving on the LivePrayer team on Sundays--ALL Online!

To get to the point, my church home is online! Available 7 days a week. While I sit in front of my computer, I can serve God as a member of the prayer team, worship and rock out with LifeChurch via video, fellowship with others right there in the Experience Chatroom, and listen to inspired messages delivered by Pastor Craig and others that really apply to 21st century believers. I also get to rejoice with those who receive Christ as Savior!

The best part is that this is an INTERNATIONAL ministry. During one Experience of ChurchOnline, there were folks from 40 countries!

Also, on a personal level, I can get to church EVERY Sunday( or most any other day of the week), be of service, study and discuss the Word, and also maintain peace in my home. Being a part of LifeChurch and ChurchOnline has provided and I am sure, will continue to provide the way to be an active part of a body of believers and, at the same time do it in such a way that it doesn't take time away from my relationships and responsibilities.

That this is possible and beneficial has re-ignited my own passion to serve Christ through Abiding Ways. Yes, it's a lot of work, and yes, I may be un/under-qualified. Lord knows my insecurities and faults and challenges. That being said, I will continue to trust and obey.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

This and that

It's been a few weeks since my first post, but I promised myself that I would blog only as I had the time.

Well its about 4 a.m. and here I am, up all night doing something at least moderately productive - at least from where I sit.

I have started working on the ministry that I believe God has given me. I'll tell you the whole story on the site someday. Yes, its rather skimpy right now but it's all good.

Please check it out and let me know what you think, ok. You can either comment here or email me at

OK, it IS time to get some sleep. The other work that I have been given begins at 10:30 a.m. (EDT). Come and meet with me in the Live Chat LifeChurch-Online We are starting OnePrayer

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Priorities, prayer and Jesus's name.

So much of my devotional and quiet time this weekend points to "priorities". I was reading this morning from "Our Journey" a devotional of Walk in the Word and Pastor James McDonald. The devotion talks about Abraham's obedience-even to his willingness to sacrifice the "son of promise", Isaac.

I confess that while my heart's desire is to keep God #1, the daily rigors and "to do list" of my life too often takes precedence over spiritual disciplines. Don't get me wrong, I daily spend at least a few minutes in prayer and devotional reading. I believe that my life, in general, mirrors the love of Christ and loving God. What nags at my heart is that there are times when, in making choices-I question my motives.

This is especially true in my prayer life. Daily, I pray-sometimes as brief as saying the Lord's prayer. Too often, to my mind, it seems almost mechanical-just another thing I can check off my "to do" list. Sure, there is usually at least one day a week when its all out, on my knees, PRAYER...and I love it! Unfortunately, IMHO, really talking, worshipping and fellowshipping with my Lord is the exception and not the rule. So, to improve on this I have committed to get up a little earlier each and every morning before my beloved gets up (privacy is one of my excuses) and instead of rushing to email or Facebook I will pray first!

Another thing the Lord has shown me is that in speaking of His many blessings I usually just say "I've been blessed" and to me it seems that I don't often say WHO provided the blessing and giving the Lord the glory. True, the majority of those who know me, also know that I'm a Christian, and I assume they also know by inference that it is Jesus who has blessed me. Thankfully, my cube mate is also a believer, so I KNOW she KNOWS ...but I feel sometimes that I'm intentionally hiding His glory. It feels wrong to me! So, to make it right, I pray --and hope readers will pray also, that I may be bolder and say it out loud!! JESUS blessed me!!!!

Lastly, for some time, the Lord has been showing me that He'd like to spend more time with me! This was made even more apparent in this week's message at LifeChurch (Church ONLINE!). The series is "Elijah". Something that was especially significant to me, this week, is that while I see him as a prophet and called specifically by God, he was also an ordinary person-just like me. Pastor Brandon taught us about four qualities/characteristics of effective prayer that really spoke to my desire for a better time of prayer.
  • First-humility in prayer. It is the posture/attitude of our hearts that God sees. Not words mumbled as part of a routine. After all, in praying, we are speaking to the King of the Universe! So, approach Him in the manner He deserves.
  • Next, specificity in prayers. I'm not talking about the "name it and claim it-genie in a god" sort, but really crying out to the Lord-praying heartfully, remembering that in prayer, we are in His presence.
  • Thirdly, be persistent! Elijah sent his servant seven times before he was satisfied. Paul, in asking that his thorn be removed, prayed three times. And our Lord Jesus, in the garden before His crucifixion also prayed multiple times that the cup be removed from Him.
  • Lastly, pray expectantly! In faith, wait on the Lord. Jesus said (Mark 11:24) "Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours." One of the most awesome promises of God is that He hears us! He may say "yes" or "no" or "wait" but He will answer.

That being said, its getting near the time for 11 AM (EDT) services! Jesus has blessed me with the privilege of serving on the "Live Prayer" team for this Experience time. Hope to see you there!