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Faith Hurricane Ian joy Law Enforcement Life rain safe Storm storms

After the Rain

First Bon Fire of the Season

Peach says: Just a quick note to see how everybody is after Ian!

Batman and I, along with our youngest son and his son, rode it out safely and soundly and with much gratitude! And some large quantities of Snickerdoodle’s. As I like to bake on rainy days, and cool days. And it was definitely a rainy couple of days!

It was the first storm I got to weather with Batman! As all previous that came to our area, he worked of course! That’s what policemen do! Have I mentioned how grateful I am for these retirement years?

Ian will turn out to be discovered as a crazy strong storm from what I have been reading about from a local storm tracker, who road out the entire storm in a parking garage in Punta Gordy, with other trackers and also was able to connect with some very seasoned meteorologists, who had some absolutely ASTONISHING data on Ian.

It made me evermore grateful for how we were spared this time in our area. It was positively supernatural that this storm did not have near the impact that Matthew or especially Irma did on us here.

Going to be remembering SW Florida, and all of Florida in prayers for the foreseeable future as we figure out how to rebuild.

Lord, inspire us all how to help. Please lead the people who are bereft and weary and overwhelmed, show them whether to stay and rebuild, or if their season is to move. Grant them provision, wisdom, courage, peace and hope. Remind them and then lead them into Your joy, which is their strength and confounds the enemy of our souls. Raise up Your people who are to move into the torn up places and rebuild them! Let these places be remade and flourishing and grounded in You! Thank You for saving so many and the mercy we have experienced! Heal and comfort those whom are hurting and experiencing great loss. In all of this Lord, be glorified! May many, many, many be brought near to You! In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

You need the sound on!! I was actually too cold and we had to go inside! So not like me, as I LOVE THE COLD WEATHER!

Love and bon fires, Y’all! Love and bon fires! I think they can cure a whole lot!

Peach

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Faith family God good Hope Jesus joy Life retirement

The Joy of the Lord is Your STRENGTH – Tuesdays are for Thinking #3

My Sugar Boogas!!

Peach says:

Some thoughts. We lost my Dad on 1 January of this year. It hits me in sharp moments, out of the blue. Like a sneak attack. 💔

There’s been lots of joy this year as well. Batman’s first year of retirement! 🥰❤️🎉🎉👏🏻👏🏻 First full year of SEVEN grandchildren!! 😍🤗 And more good and more hard, and unexpected things besides.

You know, life is like that. It’s not all one thing, right? It’s not just one emotion. it’s processes and pain, and joy and excitement, hope and forgiveness.

I’ve seen in those I love, and experienced myself, grief like I never expected. I’ve seen and experienced wonderful moments of love, and joy, faith and hope right in the middle of it all. Thank God for the WONDER and the GOOD right in the middle of it all, even in the pain.

God is SO faithful, and I do not say that lightly. He really, truly is. The good thing about being in your 50s and having been walking with Jesus for almost 29 years is you learn a lot, hopefully! (though I had a L-O-N-G way to go, and STILL do have a long way to go! 😂😂). But, you do, you learn that nothing but Jesus is permanent. Everything else is learning and moving and loving and living and dying and beginning, and ending and enduring and outlasting, and forgiving and making new ways, it’s a LOT of moving pieces. And the Lord is with us through it all. Making us able. Helping us do the right thing. To have His heart. To believe in and hope for the best, once more again. To be flexible. To give, because it’s right. To surrender. To take that first step or maybe make that first move. To get up and go again. To savor the good today, and shake off the dust from the bad yesterday. And if today is bad, you can shake it off, too, and tomorrow, walk in the new. Jesus has already gone ahead of You, and He has provision for you there! And He’s right here with you in the now, to help you in the going.

We don’t wait to be happy, (and yes, I agree, happiness and joy are different, but that’s for another post!) we choose the happy on the way and in the process, or else we will never be happy. Sometimes we forget this, and that’s ok, as long as we stick with Jesus and have a few Godly, Jesus loving people around us, to just remind us by how they live, that we get to choose. Happy is possible. On the way.

And all of that is to say today I thought about Nehemiah 8:10 “…the Joy of the Lord is your Strength”, and Y’all it’s no joke. I wanted to boil it down for you, but of course I couldn’t quite get there. (It’s SO BIG, Y’all!! 🤗) Trust me, this IS the short version! 😂 But, the full verse 10 is this —> “Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: NEITHER BE YE SORRY; for the JOY of the Lord IS YOUR STRENGTH.”

Really you need verses 9-11 to really appreciate it…but His joy, is our STRENGTH…joy is that everlasting, enduring quality we are able to have through our confidence in Him, His character, His presence, His love for us, in spite of temporary conditions, (and everything on this side of Heaven is temporary).

The love of a father and son is a joy to behold!

He makes us able to choose joy, and that will give us great strength, like a fortress for us, that makes us untouchable, where it really counts, in our spirit.

To ‘be not sorry’, was the priests urging the people not to grieve so much that they wore grooves into their face, they had grieved, and that was good and necessary, but don’t stay there. Choose to celebrate, to eat the best, drink the sweet, send good things to those who weren’t established and therefore didn’t have the same wherewithal, because ‘this day is holy to the Lord.’

And so the people did. Because they understood they were God’s people and He loved them, and He had a Good way for them to live. And now that they knew this, (they had just learned how badly they had broken God’s laws their entire lives) they would now be learning how to live a NEW way, (well, new to them), walking with Him. And that was something to celebrate! Not grieve for the wrong they had done, so much so that they couldn’t enjoy the newness of life WITH Him.

We sometimes have to grieve, then we let it go. Then we celebrate. The life that’s still here. That’s new every day. All the time. A gift. And share. Share with those that aren’t established in this good news. The JOY of the Lord is your STRENGTH.

I think I’d like us to talk about the difference between happiness and joy in a future exploration! Percolating!

We really appreciate y’all coming by to visit! We always hope to have something entertaining, thought provoking, or uplifting for you here!

Peace and love, Y’all! Peace and love!

Peach

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fun Jesus joy Love memories Music

‘Let Your Soul Shine’

Peach here:

Batman and I decompress with music, I mean we just do!!

We decided ‘round here there will be Music Mondays!

As our introduction, we give you The Allman Brothers and ‘Soulshine’. 😍🥰😍

To me it speaks of letting the best in us, (which for me is Jesus! His LIGHT and His LOVE sparkling through us).

We have to fill our tanks up on the good days, right? Because we don’t always know when the darkness will hit, and we don’t want to be without the ability for our ‘soulshine’ to be able to help see the way to a brighter day!

Gonna share the lyrics here:

“Soulshine
When you cant find the light
That guides you through a cloudy day
When the stars aint shinin bright
And you feel like you’ve lost your way
When the candle lights of home
Burn so very far away
Well you got to let your soul shine
Just like my daddy used to say
He used to say soul shine
Its better than sunshine
Its better than moonshine
Damn sure better than rain
Hey now people don’t mind
We all get this way sometimes
Got to let your soul shine
Shine till the break of day
I grew up thinkin that I had it made
Gonna make it on my own
But life can take the strongest man
And make him feel so alone
Now and then I feel a cold wind
Blowin through my achin bones
I think back to what my daddy said
He said Boy, in the darkness before the dawn
Let your soul shine
Its better than sunshine
Its better than moonshne
Damn sure better than rain
Yeah now people don’t mind
We all get this way sometimes
Got to let your soul shine
Shine till the break of day
Sometimes a man can feel this emptiness
Like a woman has robbed him of his very soul
A woman too, God knows, she can feel like this
And when your world seems cold
You got to let your spirit take control
Let your soul shine
Its better than sunshine
Its better than moonshne
Damn sure better than rain
Lord, now people don’t mind
We all get this way sometimes
Got to let your soul shine
Shine till the break of day
Oh, its better than sunshine
Its better than moonshne
Damn sure better than rain
Yeah now people dont mind
We all get this way sometimes
Got to let your soul shine
Shine till the break of day”

Hope you enjoy this little bit of Music Monday!!

God bless!

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Landslide

Peach says:

First apologies, profusely, for being so late! Life is so very full right now! Jerry put out a fantastic group of sunrise photos! ‘Morning’s Glory’! We are both so glad to get some of the glorious beauty of the Lord into people’s hands, in order for people to appreciate the hand of God at work for us.

“The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.” — Psalm 19:1

So, how are y’all doing so far this year? We are running our race this year strong and steady, counting the literal work days and until Batman retires! And counting the months and weeks until each two grand babies are born!

Not gonna lie, having a hard time processing all the emotion of joy of this year and the work to make time for writing or making podcasts. But, my heart is so here every day, looking for opportunities. I am sure we all struggle with that juggling thing though.

What are you listening to lately? This year has brought some wonderful praise and worship music and just uplifting music in general. My sound track this year has included Dante Bowe and his album Circles. All. Of. It. What I loved about this album is he is a devout Christian artist writing and singing with so many in the current Praise and Worship circles, like a bee from one group to the next, cross pollinating from one part of the Body of Christ to the next, which I think is one aspect of the epitome of healthy Christian living. The kicker though for this project, in my mind, is it is a Christian singing his faith as it looks in his every day life, like we ought to live every day, not as a praise and worship project but just reflections on life, naturally reflecting his faith. Totally relatable to anyone, whether they care for Christian music or not. Every song has a reason to choose it. I think ‘Joyful’ and ‘Family Tree’ are great choice to give a listen.

The Maverick City, Elevation Worship project called ‘Old Church Basement’ is a whole experience!! There is no skip song at all, on this or any of the great albums I’m digging this year! Some faves? ‘Wait on You’, ‘Shall Not Want’, ‘Million Little Miracles’, ‘Come Again’, and ‘Build Your Church’. It just transports you.

And can I just say I am superrrrr late to the Crowder party???? The Crowder ‘Milk and Honey’ album is a whole entire planet of wonderful!! A Southern Rock girl to my core, this music feeds my soul because it magnifies Jesus AND gives me that bit of the South sound that makes my heart happy. Again, no skip songs! Listen to it all…twice or thrice!

Also, I forgive y’all for not telling me about ‘We The Kingdom’. Did I mention I’m a Southern Rock girl? Yes! These people are making music that just isn’t out there, Jesus and the Kingdom and sung in Southern! ♥️♥️♥️ My heart sings and my windows rattle as I’m driving down the road! ‘Don’t Tread on Me’! Kicks the devil in his teeth and EXALTS our Jesus!! All the while making my Southern roots tingle! ‘Take Me on a Ride’ is such a great picture of the adventure our faith walk is supposed to be. What a great witness and joyful song!

An extraordinary experience I had one Friday before work, back in early May, was impulsively purchasing an old album by Pastor Clint Brown, from about 12-15 years ago.

Background: The church I spent 20 years in, and raised our boys in, sang so much of his music! He visited a good number of times and preached with fire and he’s just a work horse for the Kingdom of God. Good man. Super anointed. Well, I had been missing Praise and Worship from my old days at Family Worship Center. Which inspired me to get ‘Fall Like Rain’ that fateful Morning.

WOW! It lifted my spirits so much. I had not realized how VERY MANY songs we did of his until that day! It blessed me beyond anything I could have imagined, because I knew literally every song, and it was such a wonderful, joyful experience to get to sing these songs at the top of my lungs, while also remembering Sunday after Sunday and Thursday after Thursday doing the same, and it took me back, in the best way, to service after service of knowing that the Holy Spirit had just done surgery in my heart before the preaching even had begun! Again, no skip songs, some of my faves being ‘Awesome God’, ‘I Can’t Get Enough’, ‘I Will’, ‘I’m Forgiven’, and ‘Fall Like Rain’. He’s from Louisiana. And it shows!! Fan-flippin-tastic!! Music is such an incredible gift of God.

What brought me here tonight though, was Batman discovered a YouTube channel by the sweetest, most fun young couple, it’s called ‘Rob Squad Reactions’ . Not only are their music choices SUPERB! But, their heart shows through every upbeat amazed reaction, as they discover old music that Batman and I just love because it’s music from the soundtrack of our lives as younguns. They are all about the joy of musical craftsmanship and it’s a lot of fun to watch them discover and/or just enjoy it with us. Like us, they see music as a unifying element that people across all groups can appreciate and take pleasure in. We all need more of this!

Tonight as we sat listening to Stevie Nicks signing ‘Landslide’, I actually was overwhelmed with gratitude and emotion that made my eyes tear, which is not a reaction I have to music hardly ever. So many thoughts about appreciation for Batman, and our life together. It was like a wave washed over me. Or maybe bubbled out of me is better expressed.

I met him 5 March 1982 with friends on the way to an Alabama concert in a neighboring city. Our journey amazes me. It’s not that we have a flashy story. Nope. We are not flashy people. But, we were kids. Born to people who were extremely working class. Salt of the earth people. Our parents were born to people born and raised during the Great Depression. They had some wisdom to live by. And we had things to learn beyond that. Like every generation does. Just very grateful how the Lord has helped us to learn and grow and GROW TOGETHER. What a gift.

I think listening to these old songs and the memories and joy and the tears and the MILES the Good Lord has brought us through just has really moved me tonight! So, I wanted to jump on here and talk about what the gift of music is doing in my life this summer!

I hope you will be inspired to catch a sunrise, and try out Rob Squad Reactions, and maybe Dante Bowe or Crowder and ‘Milk and Honey‘, or We the Kingdom.

So tell me, whatcha listening to lately?

“It is of the Lord’s MERCIES that WE ARE NOT CONSUMED, because his compassions fail not.

They are NEW every morning: great is thy faithfulness.” — Lamentations 3:22-23