Sunday, November 30, 2008

Friday, November 28, 2008

The Morning After


Unfortunately, the morning after has found me on overload. Curses to these "accurate" scales! Yes, at the Hopper house, Thanksgiving was truly filled with happiness and laughter - and plenty of good food. Unfortunately not all our loved ones could be with us, and we did miss them. (Pics hopefully will be forthcoming after Kellee finishes her Black Friday excursions).

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving to All

Thanksgiving is a time of giving thanks for our abundance of blessings.

Happy Thanksgiving Cameron, Barbara, Madison, Cassidy, Kellee, Alisha and Preston. I love you dearly. and am forever grateful for the love you give to me.

Happy Thanksgiving to my friends who enlighten my pathway. I am forever grateful for your friendship.

Thank you dear Lord - for I am truly blessed, and forever grateful to you for everything.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

In a "Fowl" Mood


Am in the middle of giving the "old bird" a trial run...and thought I'd share it with you. No, seriously, we deep fry our turkey so he doesn't have time to think he is in for a special treat, like a sauna.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO YOU AND YOURS...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Thank You Lord


Thank you Lord, for saving my soul
Thank you Lord, for making me whole
Thank you Lord, for giving to me
So great a salvation, so rich and so free

Friday, November 21, 2008

Entertaining - House or Home Style

With the holidays fast approaching, I thought how enjoyable it is to go into someone's home and actually feel at home. You notice I use the word “home” not “house” – there is a defined difference.

We've all gone into homes where we've felt genuinely welcome as well as into houses where we had to recheck our invitation to make sure we really had been invited. The door opens, we go in, and the host/hostess says, “Glad to have you” and walks away. We stand there wondering what to do next, and then sheepishly saunter into the room looking for a familiar face. When there's none, something starts gnawing in our stomach and we redraw to the darkest corner of the room. If we happen by chance to notice an acquaintance, we quickly run a relay to their side and make idle chatter - only occasionally letting our eyes scan the room in hopes to find another comfort zone (i.e., another familiar face). Oh, how I hate that feeling – just writing about it makes me shudder.

Entertaining should not be based on the quality of the food or its presentation but that the host/hostess "welcomes,” “embraces," and "receives" guests as one of their own. No, entertaining isn’t the food, although some Santa Maria tri-tip sounds good right now. I have had hot dogs and chips and enjoyed myself to no end – and then had steak with all the trimmings and wished there was a doggie bag so I could take it home to eat because the atmosphere would be much, much better. You say, you'd be by yourself - I was anyway.

Now, here's where I've been trying to go (I know, it takes me awhile – sorry – blame it on my age). What type of host/hostess are we to the world? Do people feel welcome when around us, or do they feel uncomfortable, unwanted? Shouldn't we use proper “Good News” etiquette, become the perfect host/hostess and open the door to our heart? For when we truly “entertained” those about us, we have “entertained” the Lord.

PS: Okay, so the picture is of outdoor entertaining...it's what we do almost all year round on the California coast so I'm brainwashed. No, that's not right. I couldn't find the right entertainment picture that I liked.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Sticks or Stones?

"Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me" is a great old playground phrase. However in real life, the non-play kind, we must make a choice as to whether we will be a stone OR a stick in the Lord's church. There's no "AND" allowing us to be both - we are either one or the other. Which type of Church Pillar do you plan to be?

One made of stone?

Or just a stick in the mud?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Hmm...What to Eat?



Thanksgiving is fastly approaching....so trying to get my menu together but these guys aren't making it easy. We usually have both but this year, there seems to be a protest. Guess it's a "society thing" - seems someone is always protesting something.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Your Shoes Fit?


If The Shoe Fits, Wear It.

Why is it that we have the tendency to blame everyone else for what's going on that's wrong, always excluding ourselves from any liability. And if it's an acceptable, well received act/event that pleases, we proclaim ourselves as the one responsible.

Photo: Clown Shoe Conference, Mexico City

Monday, November 17, 2008

Hagar, You are Special


"The dismissal of Hagar", 1612 painting, by Pieter Pietersz Lastman

More and more I find myself admiring women who demonstrate that survival is possible under the harshest of circumstances. Yesterday while in church, I saw many amazing women, and then I thought of the many more that I am acquainted with that don't attend our local assembly. I know there are many interpretations as to the Biblical Hagar, each seeing this woman in a different light but for me Hagar was a model of strength and determination - and these single moms exemplify such. They are the modern day Hagars. They are holding together fractured families, and doing so with only the Lord by their side.

We must not forget that our Hagars continue to make supreme sacrifices, yielding their wills for the sake of others. Their duties expand far beyond the norm. In most cases, they are not only mom, but the dad and the breadwinner. In other words, they are the total package, holding their families together in spite of economic and social conditions. Many of these women believe that they are of little worth, which is heartbreaking and such a shame. I think it's time for us to uplift them because the Hagars among us are truly unsung heroines - and we need to let them know how much we appreciate them.

Hagars, Thank You. Thank you for taking a stand when it would have been easier to step aside and get lost in the crowd. Thank you for thinking more of your children and their souls than your wants and needs. Please don’t let discouragement overshadow your labor. Seeing your courage and faith brings inspiration to my soul. You are jewels divinely rare. So shine on precious ones, for your ministry is special and an example to us all.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Stepping Higher







Lord, please guide my steps to a new level in You











Added note 11/17:
When I first posted this picture I didn't notice that there was no opening at the top of the stairs - then when I realized what I'd done, I thought, Oh no, what a mistake. But then I started to think of what that truly meant. At the top of the stairs, there is a ledge and a wall which lets me know that sometimes our stepping up in Him isn't easy, and we will either move along the edge, never getting our reward - or we can climb the wall and move into a new dimension in the Lord. It's our decision, and how badly we want it.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Buy Prime Real Estate


A man who is truly rich does not own a mansion in this world.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Mourn Harp, Weep Organ

A number of years ago, during a very trying time in my life, I fell across scripture speaking of The Mourning of the Harp, the Organ to Weeping. This wonderful set of scripture intrigued me. My world was crushed, my spirit broken, and I had no place to hide. All I could do was throw myself into His Word (and prayer) - that is, if I wanted to have joy once more. Perhaps, I am speaking to someone whose world has exploded into tiny pieces, and you doubt you will ever genuinely possess joy again. I am here to tell you, it can happen.

Mourning, weeping comes for a season, and sometimes several seasons. It is a time, if we permit, to enter into the presence of Our Lord. Then when the harp and organ unite in harmonious bonding, there is an encouragement, a promise of a better day. Here below is a poem I penned after the loss of two precious pieces of my heart. I thought I would never smile again...in fact, I don't think I even wanted to but after holding to His precious Word, and looking to life as He sees best, I was able to find joy once again. We must just believe, and listen for the sounds of the harp and organ uniting in purpose and love.

Enter into the tabernacle of praise,
Sacred, filled with reality’s organized tones.
Musical arrangements presenting a unified theme,
Sounds aesthetically tailored for the soul’s ear,
Connecting rhythmic beats in harmonious composition.
A potpourri mixture of melody’s beauty and grace.

Stringed instruments make joyful announcements,
Exhilaration freed by the radiance of nature.
Horns blast forth messages of major triumphs,
Leaving little doubt as to cherished conquests.
Percussion’s ensemble patiently anticipates its turn
To shatter incarcerations of unwanted darkness.

On the platform, spaced close to the wall,
An instrument of heavenly tones awaits introduction.
A golden harp, its opened frame positioned upright, desiring
To unveil creation through touches on graded string lengths.
Forty-six special cords will meet in unique expression.
From its secluded corner, what message will it propose?

Must the harp alone deliver suffering in strains of agony?
Nay, it will be joined by a soul mate, the organ.
For as the harp mourns, its faithful companion too will cry out,
Lending support to the plucking of designated sorrow.
The organ’s methodical tones placidly filtering the air,
While ivory keys act as agents in charge of suppressed spirits.

The harp and the organ will bond in the unity of soul searching,
Presenting the secrets of strength and endurance.
For as the harp mourns in chords of intimate rejection,
The organ weeps in anguish bore of the flesh,
Their sounds saying that they have found a common ground
Their persistent longing in darkness will bring jubilation at dawn.

“Weeping may endure for the night but Joy comes in the morning…”

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Where'd that Rock Go?

"...when my heart is overwhelmed:

Lead me to the Rock that is Higher than I."
Psa 61:2

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

You Go, Girl


HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MADISON

Wishing A Very Special Day To A Very Beautiful Young Lady.
Enjoy Every Minute! (and maybe you can get Cassidy to wait on you)
Love You Dearly, Nana

Monday, November 10, 2008

Ouch!


We can complain because rose bushes have thorns,
or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.
Abraham Lincoln

Sunday, November 9, 2008

No Need to Conserve


Come to the Living Water....which never runs dry

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Happy Blogging to Me!

My goodness, I turned 1 year old a few days ago. Yep, I completely forgot I had a blog birthday November 2 - been a blogger and lurker for a little over a year now (started November 2, 2007 at 9:45am). I realize that I'm celebrating a few days late - but why not! It's an accomplishment - lets me "vent" (thanks to the soapbox), rant/rave (hopefully in a nice way), and love/dislike (not hate, that's an ugly word) certain things (not people). Plus it's a great way to talk with all my dear friends, old and new.
Happy Blogging World Birthday to Me!!!
Whoopee...another chance for me and papa to celebrate.
Oophs, sorry papa!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Renew, Refresh, Revive


RENEW Our Aquaintance with Him
REFRESH Our Spirit in Him

REVIVE Our Purpose for Him

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Making a Difference

As God's Ambassadors
Hand in Hand, We Can Make a Difference!

Let's have revival across the land!!!!
"Where two or three are gathered together in His name..."

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

At Last - Completion!

Many of you may remember the day when reports and essays were just that. Three or four pages normally was par at outlining what was learned from a book or other subject matter. That was yesteryear. School projects now require dioramas to be added to the reports/essays. I think it is great because I love creative things and am happy that my granddaughters have a creative touch. I’d like to share Madison and Cassidy’s offerings.

Cassidy did a report on the Algonquin Native Americans, which were famous for their birch bark canoes. The diorama, which was required, is in the shape of a canoe. My son made the canoe out of pine, and then he and Cassidy glued the birch veneer onto it.

Madison had an essay/diorama on Eleanor of Aquitaine who was the queen of France and England as well as the mother of Richard the Lionhearted. Her husband imprisoned her for 16 years because she supported her son in the Revolt against the husband. The diorama is complete with a medieval stained glass cross and a stained glass window.

Great Job Madi and Cassie. I know these were projects that went late into the night, and the looks on your faces after finishing them shows the excitement of completion.

Pumpkin Day Pics

Wanted to include these pictures of my granddaughters and their mom at Pumpkin Day School Activities. Madison is a Scarecrow; Cassidy is Shirley Temple; and Barbara is Dorothy from Wizard of Oz.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The Vote that Counts


IN GOD "I" TRUST
As a citizen of this great country, it is my duty to vote.
As a citizen of God's great kingdom, it is my duty to trust.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Let GPS Guide You


LIFE IS A JOURNEY
But don't worry about getting "lost"
Just follow the GPS (God's Plan of Salvation)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Here I Am, Lord

Worship the Lord in the Beauty of His Holiness