Interesting Stuff

  • Divorce and Remarriage

    wedding cake in halfThis past Sunday my pastor preached the best sermon I’ve ever heard on the subject of divorce and remarriage.  He’s preaching a series called “Cow Tipping”.  The analogy is tipping over things that are taboo to talk about in the church.  I like how my pastor, Nathan Albrecht isn’t afraid of having an opinion, but he’s always making sure that it lines up with the Bible.  He must study hard for his sermons as he gives so much historical detail that helps me and many others “get it” on a continual basis.  Pastor Nathan isn’t afraid to hold up God’s ideal for marriage that should be our goal as Christians and yet present what he feels is God’s word on how to manage when our lives fall short of God’s ideal.
    As a divorced and remarried person I have struggled hard with both these issues.  I never in a million years saw myself ending up in either category!  Neither did my wonderful husband.  Both of us have experienced the heartwrenching pain of divorce but, thankfully we’re experiencing the wonder of love in our second marriage together.
    I have never been one to try and make scripture fit my circumstance and really don’t like when people do.  I want to know what the Bible says, even if it makes me uncomfortable!  This sermon truly is the best Biblical message on the topic of divorce and remarriage that I’ve ever heard.  Any sermons that I’ve heard in the past have only centred on one scripture that leaves divorced people like me, feeling like the woman in this cartoon below.  We’re forced to drag around a ball and chain for all to see our past failure…especially when we go to church.  All too often this is why divorced people avoid the church or stop going entirely.
    divorced woman at altar
    When I was going through extreme marriage issues in my first marriage, we were seeing an amazing Christian counsellor who helped me not feel like the woman in the cartoon.  He was very much against divorce and tried for years to help us not have to walk that road.  As the years went on and divorce was inevitable, this counsellor brought to my attention other scriptures in the Bible that discuss divorce and remarriage.  Ones other than the lone verse I had heard in church.   Never before had I noticed these verses and I surely hadn’t understood them when I read them.  God used these scriptures to help me understand His complete word on divorce and remarriage, yet never diminishing my belief in God’s ideal for marital relationships.  marriage-divorce-remarriage-ring on Bible pagePastor Nathan used many of these scriptures in his message.  It was the first time that I’ve heard from the pulpit a sermon that truly brought healing to my heart in this area.  There was even one scripture at the end that I had never noticed before that Pastor Nathan quoted.  It helped me understand God more and to learn that He “gets me” way more than I ever imagined.  He really is a God who can sympathize with our sufferings.  To understand, you just have to watch the sermon (Link Below).  I hope you listen to the end because it will revolutionize the way you think about what the Bible has to say regarding divorce and remarriage.  If you feel like the woman in the cartoon…you can be set free!  Let your spirit drink in the truth of God’s Word as it drowns out the opinions of others!
    FGT Church Sermon Video of Pastor Nathan Albrecht on “Divorce & Remarriage
    Check out the FGT Church Website For Other Great Sermons

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  • Desensitized Song

    caution slow fadeThis week’s devotional was about losing your Spiritual Sensitivity.  I talked about how we can become “Desensitized” to spiritual things.  It’s never a one decision journey, but as Casting Crowns sings:slow fade words
    People don’t wake up one day and just change.  It’s always a progression of life choices that keep leading them farther and farther away from who God created them to be.  You become desensitized, it doesn’t just happen.  It’s the effects of spirtual dehydration that gets you delirious enought to make bad choices.
    Thought you might like to listen to this song about the effects of the desensitizing “Slow Fade”.  Next time I’ll post about how you can stay spiritually hydrated.

    Click on this link to get to the Casting Crowns Websitecasting crowns http://www.castingcrowns.com

    Click on the Link to listen to the Youtube Song “Slow Fade with Lyrics
    Click here to see the lyrics for “Slow Fade
    Write to you soon!
    ~Sherry
    xo

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  • Press On

    keep calm and press on
    Lately the song you will find me bopping my head to driving my mustang around town is “Wrecking Ball (Press on)” by  Building 429, featuring the beautiful Blanca Reves Callahan.  Blanca is from another one of my favorite bands, GROUP 1 CREW.


    Wrecking Ball (Press On) was written by Building 429’s lead singer Jason Roy.  He wrote it after struggling with some issues in his faith, feeling worn out and wondering if he was where God wanted him to be.  Can you relate?  I know we all wonder about this at some point.  The music to this song is SOOO catchy!  The words are powerful.  It’s like an Anthem you can sing declaring your faith in God, even when you “still don’t get it”!  It helps me be more committed to “Press On” no matter what!  I love the name of their album too, “WE WON’T BE SHAKEN”!  Makes me think of life verses of mine.

    “So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.  You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised…we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved.”  (Hebrews 11:35-36,39 NIV)  In other words…PRESS ON!
    I’ve included the words of the song for you ’cause the weather’s getting warmer and you might have the top down on your car.  This way, when you’re jamming out in your car, you’ll know what to sing 🙂
    Press ON
    ~Sherry
    xoxo
    Below are links to: the song (with and without lyrics), the story behind the song, Building 429’s website and Group 1 Crew’s website.

    “Wrecking Ball (Press On)”
    (Building 429: feat. Blanca Callahan of Group 1 Crew)

    Sometimes this world starts breaking me down
    I get so lost I think I’ll never be found
    And there are moments of fear and doubt
    Even the best fall to the groundI am a mess, I am a wrecking ball
    I must confess that I still don’t get it all
    Lord I believe that all Your words are true
    Doesn’t matter where I’m going if I’m going with You
    I press on, I press on, I press on
    When I still don’t get itI see the world through my jaded eyes
    I get frustrated when there is no Why
    I put my focus on worthless things
    Even the strong fall to their knees
    God only knows what we all needI am a mess, I am a wrecking ballI must confess that I still don’t get it all
    Lord I believe that all your words are true
    Doesn’t matter where I’m going if I’m going with You
    I press on, I press on, I press on
    When I still don’t get itLife goes on, life goes on
    But Your love will prove
    All I need, all I need
    I will find in You
    Life goes on, life goes on
    But Your love will prove
    All I need, all I need
    I will find in You
    I press on

    I am a mess, I am a wrecking ball
    I must confess that I still don’t get it all
    Lord I believe that all Your words are true
    Doesn’t matter where I’m going if I’m going with You
    I press on, I press on
    I press on, I press on
    When I still don’t get it
    Life goes on, life goes on
    But Your love will prove
    All I need, all I need
    I will find in You
    Life goes on, life goes on
    But Your love will prove
    All I need, all I need
    I press on (1)
     
    Song  Wrecking Ball (Press On) .  Click HERE!

    Make sure you buy the album WE WON’T BE SHAKEN!building 429 press on CD

    Song  Wrecking Ball (Press On)  With Lyrics.  Click HERE!
    Story behind the song.  Click HERE!  LOVE learning why people wrote the song they did!!!

    building 429  http://www.building429.com

    http://www.group1crew.com              group 1 Crew

    (1) https://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/building429/wreckingballpresson.html

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  • 40 Days In The Man Cave

    Can’t seem to find a ‘Mans Man’ Devotional?
    Well search no more!
    My husband Todd—the firefighter, author, artist and illustrator of WATER IN THE DESERT recently completed a NEW Men’s Daily Devotional.

    40 DAYS IN THE MAN CAVE is scattered with humorous, interesting stories about the importance of men carving out a few minutes within their crazy schedules to spend time with God and ‘Crave The Cave’.

    40 DAYS IN THE MANCAVE COVER

    After years of searching the book shelves Todd feels God has placed in his heart the need for a “Man’s Man” devotional.

    This is for the guy who wants to uncover more out of the bible without having to hand in his Man Card!
    If this describes you, or someone you know, consider reading a pre-published copy.
    We NEED your input before 40 days in the Man Cave hits the shelves!
    7 guys will be chosen.. all we ask is..

    • Email:  toddstahlart@gmail.com     Subject Line: Book Review
    • Tell us why you want to be included for this selected group
    • We will be happy to send you a manuscript and a small questionnaire to complete so we can receive your honest input.
    • Simply fill out the questionnaire and email/mail it back to us so we can make the book even better!

    For your time and assistance you will receive a signed copy upon publication!

    http://WWW.TODDSTAHL.COM

    SAMPLER     

    CLICK HERE TO READ A DEVOTIONAL SAMPLER

    YOU WON’T BE DISAPPOINTED!

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  • Winston Churchill

    Last Monday’s Devotional ended with a quote from Winston Churchill.  It is one of his most quoted quotes: “Never, never, never give up!”  As I was looking for the quote I found so many of Churchill’s other quotes that are equally amazing!  I never realized how many of the famous saying or quotes you hear orignally come from him.

    My husband Todd read a book called THE WICKED WIT OF WINSTON CHURCHILL.  This book made it onto Oprah’s Booklist!   Author Dominique Enright tells about Churchill’s great love for his wife and her struggles with depression.  Churchill loved his wife deeply and spent much of his energy to help her break free from the bondage in her mind.  It’s no wonder that so many of his quotes were inspiring and challenging people to not give up hope.  This Monday my devotional was about staying confident in hard times.  I told how Churchill spoke this with visual confidence in Vitory to the people of England with his hand sign.  I would even venture to guess that Winston’s use of the “V” hand sign was to signigy Victory over their nation’s enemy and Victory over the enemy of depression.

    winston churchill Vwinston churchill deserve victory

    Even his quotes show his optomistic trait:

    A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.

    Below are some more quotes by Winston Churchill that I’m sure you’ll love.  Some inspiring and some hilarious!

    winston churchill Enemies-stood up for something

    We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.

    A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.

    winston churchill going through hell

    If you are going to go through hell, keep going.

    Nancy Astor: “Sir, if you were my husband, I would give you poison.”
    Churchill: “If I were your husband I would take it.”

    An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile—hoping it will eat him last.

    winston churchill-failure

    Enright, Dominique.  THE WICKED WIT OF WINSTON CHURCHILL.  London, England: Michael O’Mara Books Limited, 2001

     

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  • Ayiesha Woods

    ayiesha woods

    Ayiesha Woods is a singer I love to listen too.  She was born on Long Island, NY, but moved to Bermuda as a child and then back to the US.  Her music definitely has a Carribean Influence.  It’s very soulful.  So, it’s not surprising that her music was produced by Toby Mac’s music label Gotee Records.  She has two amazing albums.  I have her “Love Like This” CD on my itunes and I LOVE it!  Ayiesha is a beautiful girl on the outside and has such an incredible voice.  One day I would be really, really “Happy” to see her in concert (Pun intended! “Happy” is one of her hit songs).  Ayiesha travelled with the Women of Faith —Revolve Tour for teen girls. 1
    Her music makes my heart soar, especially when I listen to her song, “Love Like This”!  The line “Lord, I’ve never known love like this before” just gets me.  This picture seems to sum up what I think of when I hear this song.
    child-hand-absolute dependence

    So, do yourself a favor and click on the picture of her CD cover below to hear her song…so you know what CD to buy next 🙂

    ayiesha woods cd cover
     
    1 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayiesha_Woods

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  • The Turnaround Story of Emily Scott

    Screen Shot 2014-02-05 at 11.55.49 PM
    Monday’s devotional was titled “God Of The Turnaround”.  The verse was from Jeremiah 29:14
    I’ll turn things around for you. I’ll bring you back…you can count on it” MSG
    Emily Scott’s life has got to be one of the most incredible turnaround stories ever!  She will be representing the US as a Short Track Skater.   She is a girl who was born with a desire to go to the Olympics.  As a young girl she made the Jr. Olympic gymnastics team but had to quit because her family did not have enough money to keep her in that expensive sport.  Emily’s dad worked from paycheck to paycheck and her mom, a drug addict, spent time in and out of jail.  Emily’s dad says that the first miracle to bring her to the Olympics happened when she was 6 years old.  A man gave her father a free pair of inline skates for Emily.  With much practice she excelled at inline skating.  As an Inline World Champion she hoped that it would become an Olympic sport. Sadly, it never did. Her Olympic dreams appeared to be crushed.
    Again, Emily’s dream could not be achieved in the sport she loved.   Not losing hope, she made the difficult and grueling transition to speed skating.  Emily began to excel in speed skating.  She was in training for the Olympics yet again when her world crashed around her again.  Emily lost more than half of her funding.  With her dad struggling to make ends meet, her mom and sister both in jail, Emily had to apply for food stamps to get by.  She was ready to quit and give up on her Olympic dream.  One article in USA Today caused an overflow of support for her both emotionally and financially.  Emily was able to quit her part time job and focus on training!   Emily qualified for the Olympics and will proudly represent the USA this year!   Her perseverance paid off!  What seemed like the end was the event that needed to happen in order to propel Emily into God’s plan for her life!  That desire within her that would never go away can only be from God!
    If you ever read this Emily, know that we’re praying for you!  Thanks for sharing your journey to the Olympics so candidly with the world!  You have brought this author great encouragement and hope to NEVER give up on her dreams!  May God bless you as you walk out (or should I say, skate out) the calling He has on your life!
    https://www.nbcolympics.com/news/six-fun-facts-about-short-track-skater-emily-scott
    https://www.nbcolympics.com/news/emily-scotts-olympic-dream-embodied-fathers-love-strangers-kindness?ctx=team-usa
    https://www.speedskatingresults.com/index.php?p=17&s=18726 

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  • Forgiveness…the song

    For those of you who read my blog on a regular basis, you know that I love music!  God speaks to me so clearly through song!  If only I could sing 🙂  Yesterday’s devotional on “Forgiveness and Restored Relationship” just keeps going through my mind.  It ended up being a big part of our Bible Study discussion last night.   Matthew West’s song “Forgiveness”  keeps running through my mind ever since the idea for the devotional came into my thoughts.  Last June Todd and I went to The International Christian Retail Show in St. Louis and got to see Matthew West Emcee a “New Talent” Night.  We have loved his music for years and it was great to see a different side of him–the funny side!  It was a fun night and we were blessed to receive his book on Forgiveness.

    Matthew West at ICRS St. Louis
    Matthew West at ICRS St. Louis

    If you’ve never heard this song, you’re missing out!  The story that inspired the song is amazing!  It’s a wonderful story of forgiveness that led to a completely unexpected restored relationship.  Click on the links below that go to the youtube links for his song and the short video clip or his website where you can buy his awesome music.  Hope you listen and are inspired to forgive!
    Matthew WestSong–Forgiveness
    Story Behind The Song–Forgiveness Video Clip
    Matthew West’s Website
     

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  • Woship Music

    Hope you’re having a GREAT New Year already!!!  I am!  I’ve had three days off work now and feel refreshed!  Looking forward to an amazing year!  Praying God blesses you all with an Ephesians 3:20 year~beyond what you could ever ask or imagine!

    After Monday’s Devotional, I keep listening to the music I talked about and thought you might like to listen to some great songs too!  Here are the links for the songs I talked about.
    Click on the Words in between the photos for a link to hear the songs on Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 3.15.36 PM

    kari jobe   Kari Jobe–Adore Him   Kari Jobe- Adore Him

     
    avalon 2     Avalon–Destined        Avalon reborn CD for Destined
     
     
     
     
     
     

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  • Laura Story-Blessings

    I was “blessed” to hear Laura Story live in concert at the International Christian Retail Show in Saint Louis this year.  She shared her music and parts of her testimony.  It was amazing to me because her song “Blessings” has a really powerful message that gave me strength after my divorce.  It made sense of all the harship I faced and continued to face as a result.  It has helped me to re-establish my Christian Expectations (as talked about in my last post) to  realistic, Biblically-sound expectations.
    Here is a link to hear her song on youtube Laura Story-Blessings, but you’ll want the CD.  All the songs are amazing!
    laura storey blessings cd cover
    To find out more about Laura Storey, her music, ministry and life…check out her website http://www.LauraStoryMusic.com

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