... Even the worst heartaches can become heartstrings to God's hope, comfort, encouragement, joy, peace and love...

Welcome! As a fan of the cartoon character Maxine, I enjoy her witty remarks. But when I
read my blogs & other writing to her, she's not very responsive- even when I'm wearing my bunny slippers like hers! She just doesn't get it!
Although she's funnier than I am, I do pray that this site will bring encouragement to your day! I'd love to hear from you! Unlike Maxine, you can leave me a message via the Comments. Shalom, Connie


Sunday, December 27, 2009

At the Well

The walk to the well is usually a time of catching up on the village news, but I left early this morning so I wouldn’t meet the others. As Mary’s pregnancy is more evident, the barbed remarks have increased. This morning, of all mornings, I just couldn’t face them. My tears won’t stop. I am afraid for Mary. It is too close to her time to be traveling all the way to Bethlehem.

Yes, I know Joseph will take care of her, Lord, but couldn’t you have delayed the census a little while? Is this old lady’s request too much for you, Almighty G-d? Would it have too hard to have Mary’s needs considered? After all, she sings with great joy that you have chosen her. Yet you let her travel? Have mercy, G-d on this old woman. Forgive my arrogance. I just love my granddaughter and fear for her and the baby she’ll soon deliver. Lord, can you give me a sign… a little one perhaps? To show me that Mary is well?

The tears continued to flow, as I neared the well.

Oy, at least I can draw the water without the other woman smiling while looking at one another with their “I know the real story” expressions. I don’t even understand… how could they?

“Woman, why are you weeping?”

Frightened, I turned to see a Roman soldier looking down at me.

What does one say to a Roman? He knows nothing about women’s trials or the promised Messiah.

“Forgive an old lady, Sir. I am worried about my granddaughter traveling all the way to Bethlehem for the census.”

“So you weep? I thought you Jews trusted your god to take care of everything!” He turned and marched off laughing.

I sank to my knees and wept bitterly.

My G-d, forgive me. A sign… I ask for a sign and you send me a Roman soldier. Oy, after all these years, this old woman still doubts . . . still doesn’t put all her trust in you. Forgive this old woman once again. You alone know why Mary must make this journey. Why she is with child that’s not Joseph’s; and yet he trusts you and takes her into his home. My G-d, my G-d, help this old woman to understand . . . to trust in you in all things. Until the Messiah comes, I am your servant.

Little did I know that as I wept at the well, Mary, too, was weeping as she knelt in the hay before the manger that cradled her newborn baby. A son, as G-d had said. To be named Jesus, as Joseph had been told. Yes, Mary wept with both joy and fear as she pondered all that was and was to come.

This great-grandmother will not live to see this little one grow into a man. But I will serve the Lord faithfully all my remaining days, as I promised that quiet morning at the well.

~ ~ ~

This writer spent the birthday of the Messiah at home alone and also in tears. Illness kept me from my family and I wept for understanding… for the loss of memory-building moments with my grandchildren and son.
I, too, asked for a sign that God was with me for it didn’t feel that way. No Roman soldier appeared. No sign… just the loneliness, and the feeling of being rejected.

The next day, I asked the Lord, “What was I suppose to learn throughout the day of tears?” He gave me the story of the anxious great-grandmother, who, even though she loved the Lord, struggled with the unknown. Her fears were real. For Jesus, who left His throne to be born frail and helpless in a stable, and came to deliver the news of hope and forgiveness, was rejected and despised. What loneliness He must have felt as He hung upon the cross for us!

Then, like that great-grandmother, I knelt at the Well of Living Water and prayed, My G-d, forgive me. After all these years, this old woman still doubts . . . still doesn’t place all her trust in you. Forgive this old woman once again. My G-d, help this woman to trust in you in all circumstances and for all things. And until the Messiah comes again, I am your servant.

[Christmas 2009]

Friday, December 25, 2009

Mary kept all hese things to herself; holding them dear, deep within her. (Luke 2:19b The Message)

Child Within

a gasp, a cry
an exhausted mother's sigh
a father's teardrops
a heavenly umbilical cord cut and tied

a sweet aroma of fresh hay
a tiny gurgle as rosebud lips find milk
a whispered prayer
a naming as God commanded

a squeak of rafters as birds and mice gather
a gentle breeze to fan the fire
a clip and clop of a donkey's feet
a quiet baa-aa and a gentle moo

a ray of starlight
a flutter of angel wings
a silence
a moment realizing God's sacrifice- His only Son

a yip of a sheepdog on th hillside
an owl's hoot as he hunts
a rowdy laugh from the inn
a braying camel on the dusty road

a mother and babe sleep
a father watches
an angel guards
a world waits

May you be blessed with a quietness in your soul on this special day.


Shalom, Connie

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Season of Miracles

The eight day Hanukkah celebration is drawing to a close and I have been blessed because of it.

Just a glance at the menorhea/hanukkiah causes me to pause and reflect upon God's many gifts to us. Hannukah, also known as the Feast of Lights or the Season of Miracles has been a perfect Advent time of preparation for me. As a child, Jesus would have lit the candles and spun the dreidel with His family. That thought draws me closer to Him- a man of perfection, who left His throne to be born as a helpless baby to an ordinary couple so
He could teach and later give Himself for us.
In the game, each letter has a meaning:

nun = you get none
shin = put one in
gimmel = take all
hey = you get half

For me they also mean: nun = none of my sin will matter as I walk with Jesus
shin = add a blessing & many more will return
gimmel = Jesus gave His all for me... for you
hey = I may be only able to give half,
but Jesus gives no less than 100%

As I remove the golden foil around my geld to sample it's chocolate delight, I know the streets of gold and a mansion await me. When He calls me home, I will be forever rejoicing and singing His praises with the angels!

For now, I am content to savor my chocolate coins and to renew my promise to walk and talk with Him.

Good mornin' Lord, It's so nice to meet You.
Good mornin' Lord, it's so nice to know
That You'll walk with me
And talk with me
Where ever I may go.
Well, good mornin' Lord, good mornin' Lord!
Shalom, Connie

Friday, December 11, 2009


This evening at sundown, the first candle or light for the Feast of Dedication or Hanukkah is lit. And I am excited to celebrate, for the first time, a special feast that scripture tells us Jesus also celebrated. (See John 10:22; note also the miracles that occur in chapters 9 and 10.)
The Feast of Dedication or Hanukkah has also been called the Season of Miracles. It celebrates the reclaiming, cleansing & re-dedication of the temple with 8 days of festive remembrance.
Because this is new to me, I have been researching & asking questions that have taught me more exciting things about the Lord. I'd like to share with you!
First, I'd never caught the significance found in John 10:22. I didn't connect "Feast of Dedication" as being Hanukkah. I've loved learning that & sharing with my grandchildren that Jesus celebrated Hanukkah also. We're going to play the dreidel game tonight like He did!
As we read the story of Hanukkah's coming to be and discussed the monorah, it was fun listening to my three and one-half year old put it all together. She, of course, knows the song "This Little Light of Mine," and easily put it together that even one little candle can light up our world.
As a Messianic believer, the tallest candle, which is lit first & lights all the others, is the perfect picture of Christ, our Light of the World. By the way, some Advent candle wreaths place the Christ Candle taller also.
One thing before I tell you what happened that required the cleansing and re-dedication of the temple, you need to know that the purification process of the oil for the temple's menorah required 8 days.
Now, let's go back in time. Alexander the Great in Greece is dying. He gives his kingdom to four of his best men. One of those four is Antiochus Epiphanies; his heir, enters Isreal kills 40,000 with no remorse, & sent out an edict to end circumcision, reading of scripture & worship.
Horrible consequences resulted. Then he defiled the Temples of God.
After many deaths & atrocities, Judah Maccabee led the battle as directed by God. A small band of men against 105,000 or more, but they were for fighting for the Lord. The undefeated Syrian army was defeated as God promised!
The Temple was rebuilt and cleansed; the altar made brand new; & one flask of oil found.
The menorah was lit with but one day of oil & remain bright for the EIGHT days of celebrating the defeat of the bad guys.
I can imagine the shock, horror & surprise of the Syrian army as they went down to defeat by a small group of ordinary men... with an extraordinary God! And can you invasion the miracles that must have been occurring to protect that small band of men?
A picture of God's mighty power, His love for His people & His caring about a small detail of oil for the menorah.
Blessed are You, Lord God, King of the Universe,
Who commanded us to live as children
of the Light through Yeshua our Messiah.


Friday, October 30, 2009

Wonderous Happenings In Spite of Technology

Live certainly is not dull & boring here in the NW.

Today was spent with multiple computer clitches, but I will not let them win!

4Him2U, the online Christian magazine I edit, is nearing its 2nd anniversary & we are adding new writers.

I have been having health concerns, but I refuse to let them stop me from fulfilling my call to write and to encourage others. Today, more than ever, I re-state my mission statement: to encourage joy in the spiritually oppressed through my written and spoken words... actions, too!

I am thankful for a new friend, who moved into my apt. complex a few months ago, she is an answer to prayer. Sandi & I share a love for the Lord and as 2 single ladies, we now can spend time together sharing that love as well as meals, shopping and movies. For those of you that live alone, you now how precious that is! And although we are in separate buildings, they are connected by a breezeway. Weather doesn't keep us apart.

Life is a bit stressful, but as Maxine says, "If it wasn't for stress, I wouldn't have any energy!"

Selah ~



Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Jumping for joy or...

I'm feeling a bit silly this evening. I have a brain that's going full speed ahead while my body is wanting to curl up with a good book under my warm comforter.
Maybe I'm not a clown... maybe I'm feeling like a bear ready to hibernate for the winter?!
Can NOT do that!
So many projects await: I'm facilitating a Bible study on Philippians, writing a study on remembering God through the simple stuff of life, preparing to edit and/or write some new e-books, returning to my network of friends now that my computer is online, learning Biblical Hebrew, attending a study on "Spirit-filled Temperaments, preparing some submissions, making healthy soup once per week for my neighbors (my reach out & touch ministry), and trying to stay away from the nasty-germ- patrol trying to pass that ole' influenza around.

Sometime, in between things, I need to clean my apartment, find a way to pay for my medicine (I fell into the donut hole!), get to the post office, do laundry, and clean out my garden box. N0-oo, I already did that!

Just the basic stuff for a retired lady with nothing but time on her hands. Right! No! This body may be tired, but the Lord has others plans, so duh, dah! I gotta get movin!



Thursday, October 15, 2009

Happy to be Back

A new computer + DSL ---> a happy dance!

It will take me a while to catch up, but I'm committed to returning to my network of friends and favorite sites after almost a year of a dead computer.

Meanwhile, here's my quick, brief update:
  • Have had 2 stories published ~ "The Calming Storm" in Hope Whispers & "Maytag Memories" in Cupcakes on the Counter (both available at Amazon).
  • I am writing a Bible study ~ A Forgetful People: a study in Remembering prompted by the cantor at my Messianic Hebrew tradition church saying, "God knows we are a forgetful people."
  • 4Him2u & my column in Positively Feminine are 2 years old... & I thought I couldn't do it!
  • Won a regional writing contest last October (2008) but my story was rejected this year. Oh well, those rejections help the head and ego from swelling too big.
  • Spent 2 weeks vacationing in Hawaii during May & fell in love with Oahu.
  • Began Stone Soup night here at Pilot Butte Retirement Center (PBRC). Everyone brings something to add to the pot & I make the soup. It means one evening of healthy food & not eating alone. Around 20 seniors have participated. It is a part of my friendship building ministry as is...
  • being the library & computer lady here at PBRC.
  • Working on needlework projects for Hanukkah/Christmas
  • Participating in the Muse Online Writers Conference this week.
  • Continue to write & edit "The Encourager," a snail mail newsletter for the chronically ill.



Thursday, July 16, 2009

You Are Not Forgotten

Just a brief note to say I am expecting to be back soon. I have been without Internet access since last October. So it's new computer time. As soon as I'm up & running, I'll be back.

9/29/09 My computer is in route. Back soon!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Book Review:

The Noticer by Andy Andrews

A small, but mighty book, The
Noticer is a quick read. Andy Andrews is a good storyteller and spins a pleasant tale about a man with an old battered suitcase, who "notices things."
He appears throughout a small town sharing with folks the things he (yep!) notices, which leads people to rethink what's going on in their lives.

You can read this book superficially and just enjoy the tale
you can stop and ponder what your life is all about and decide if any changes are needed.

I read The Noticer in one afternoon, but I have been mulling it over ever since then. As I have reflected upon the lives of each character in the story, I have seen some resemblances in my own life. And that's opened my eyes and mind to see myself as not measuring up . . . not being the person that the Lord meant for me to be. I am planning on some life changes real soon!

I strongly recommend The Noticer to everyone 16 years of age and older. Get a copy and take a journey with the old man who notices things and isn't shy about sharing them!