Running The Race

Do you ever have one of those weeks where you feel you’re taking two steps forward and three steps back? You know you’re running the race but you’re always lagging behind?

This verse is for you (and me). Hebrews 12:1 (AMP) says,

Running The Race

I’m drawn to verses in scripture that talk about running the race. Mainly, because I have a very competitive spirit, thanks to my Dad. As a family, we love to watch sports and of course, we like to win.

When I’m having one of those weeks where I feel I’m lagging behind, I read this verse. I’m reminded of the great cloud of witnesses that are cheering me on.

I imagine them saying, “Keep going!” “Finish the race!” “You can do it Cyndi!”

Maybe today, you need some encouragement. Maybe you need to know there’s a great cloud of witnesses cheering you on!

I’m cheering for you too!

Most importantly, Jesus is cheering you on and He’s For YOU.

 

Have a blessed Sunday friends!!

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The Power Of Prayer

This past week I received 2 emails from women, asking me to pray for their families. I’m always humbled that anyone would take the time to email me and ask me to pray for them. I don’t take that lightly because I know the power of prayer!

One of the women had lost a loved one unexpectedly and the other one had a family member diagnosed with cancer. My heart sank immediately when I read both of these emails.

I want to say something that can heal their hearts and yet I know I don’t have any words that can take away their pain.

The Power Of Prayer
I know what it’s like to get that devastating news that your loved one has cancer. I also know what it feels like to lose a loved one.

Tomorrow will be five years since I lost my Mom.

It’s been 5 years since I heard her sweet voice, 5 years since I held her hand, 5 years since I hugged her. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t long to hug her one last time.

I remember when she had been gone for 2 years. My husband told me this, “Cyndi, you still mourn as if you lost her yesterday.” (I think he was just worried about me.)

He was right, but truthfully there were blessings coming through those tears and those sleepless nights were spent drawing me closer to God. God was teaching me things that could only be learned through suffering.

That’s not the part of the gospel we like to talk about or hear but scripture says, “My brothers and sisters, you will face all kinds of trouble. When you do, think of it as pure joy. Your faith will be put to the test. You know that when that happens it will produce in you the strength to continue. The strength to keep going must be allowed to finish its work. Then you will be all you should be. You will have everything you need.” James 1:2-4

Scripture also says that one day, “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” Revelation 21:4

I long for that day!

This song by Laura Story has been such a blessing to me. If you’re going through trials I think it will bless you too.

 

One last thing, many of you have been praying for Bennett especially on the day she has the tape removed from her abdomen because it’s very painful. They now remove the bandages on Monday and I think the family felt the prayers so strong on Tuesdays, they want to make sure they have those prayers coming tomorrow.

The Power Of Prayer
So could I ask you to storm heaven tomorrow for Bennett? I know her family would be grateful!

Thank you for your prayers and have a blessed day!

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Be Still And Know That He Is God

Do you ever feel like life is flying by? If you’re like me, your days are filled with a “to do” list.

Whether it’s work outside the home, or work at home. My list is long and every item on the list is not always checked off by the time I lay my head down on my pillow at night.

One day of the week I go to my daughter’s home to babysit Colt. Cici and Colt are “tight,” as we like to call it.

He’s so much fun! But some days I feel like all I do is drag that sweet boy all over town trying to get all my stuff done.

Be Still And Know That He Is God
Oh we take time to feed the ducks, and we read books, and we usually go somewhere and grab a bite to eat. But by the time his nap time rolls around, we’re both wiped out!

As soon as he goes down for a nap, I start answering emails, editing photos, sharing posts on social media and the list goes on. It never ends.

This past week as I was walking late in the evening and listening to some praise and worship music, a song came on from Steven Curtis Chapman. It was simply, Be still and know that He Is God.

Be Still And Know That He Is God

As I was walking, I felt God saying, Cyndi, Be still. Not just physically but mentally. Not just when I’m having my quiet time with the Lord but even when I’m with Colt. Be still.

Are you all with me? As women, we are multitaskers. We take pride in the fact that we can do many things at one time. But we need to be still, physically and mentally.

So this week, I want to slow down and enjoy the simple moments. I want to Be Still And Know That He Is God!

 

Do you ever feel you need to be still? Do you feel like life is flying by?

Have a blessed day!

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Make No Mistake, He Knows My Name

Make No Mistake

We live in a world, where anyone can be famous in an instant! One video, one picture, one hashtag that goes viral and you could end up on the morning news. It might be temporary, but for a short time you could be famous.

Television shows like American Idol, The Voice, and America’s Got talent are looking to make someone famous.

I went to high school in a small, artsy town. It was a college town and many of my friends were apart of the local theatre. We had an outdoor drama production and I remember going there many times and seeing my friends on stage.

I realized at a young age, acting was not for me. When you get cast as a dogwood tree in the Easter production at church, you know you’re probably not the best actress.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve seen all the tragedy that goes along with being famous. Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber seemed innocent when they started out and now they are both a mess. Who would want that??

I’m sure many of you reading this are like me. You’re a Mom, a daughter, a sister, a grandmother, a wife.  You do “ordinary” things. You go to the grocery, you clean your house, you cook,  you go to work, you go to church etc.

Here’s what you need to know. You ARE famous, maybe not by worldly standards but you are famous in your Father’s eyes! He adores you and He knows YOUR name!

Do we need any more?  This post came from listening to this song. Every time I would hear it, I’d smile. It’s true, we’re adored!

 

Have a blessed day!!

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Praying For Bennett

Last Sunday, I asked for prayers for Bennett. My heart has been so heavy for Bennett and her family. Bennett has a very rare brain tumor.

I knew I could share her story with you all and you would help me “storm heaven” for Bennett! I specifically asked for prayers on Tuesday. In case you missed it, you can read why here.

Praying For Bennett

Can I just say, GOD IS FAITHFUL!! If you’ve ever doubted if God hears our prayers, I don’t think you will after reading Katie Anne’s last journal entry about Bennett. 

Praying For Bennett

Here is what Katie Anne wrote about Tuesday:

“Tuesday arrived and I felt all of your prayers! I had been dreading this day and it was actually one of the best days I’ve had since our arrival. Bennett was supposed to be put under anesthesia Tuesday morning for a hearing test. I was also dreading that because as I’ve said before, she does not recover well from anesthesia. They arrived to take her to the OR at 7 AM. As a result, she fell into a deep sleep in the holding room and miraculously, the doctor was able to administer the test while she was held asleep! Upon our return to her room, a ninja nurse was assigned to change the dressing and it was not nearly as bad as the other two times. Unbelievably this all happened before noon so we were able to be discharged early in the afternoon.

Please keep praying because I was blown away about how well my Tuesday turned out. It went from being the most dreaded day to a positive one. This couldn’t have come at a better time for me and I was truly thankful. I will close out with some immediate requests that I feel will benefit Bennett.

1. She can continue to eat and drink as her taste is so drastically affected by chemo. During treatments she especially struggles to get adequate nutrition that is critical for her overall healing and stamina.

2. The chemotherapy causes minimal side effects. Because of the number of drugs she is given, the list of possibilities is long and frightening.

3. Her hospital stay for this chemo series is as short as possible. It is so good for Bennett’s mental and physical well-being to be out of the hospital. We are still striving to maintain some degree of normalcy in this freakishly abnormal world we find ourselves in.

Finally, we continue to be overwhelmed at the generosity expressed by so many in support of our sweet girl and family. We are aware of each and every prayer, note and deed and only wish it was possible to immediately reply. Please don’t think that anything has gone unnoticed or unappreciated.”

We now have an address where we can be reached:

Bennett Lester
350 Erkenbrecher Ave Room #40,
Cincinnati, OH 45229

 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Friends, I can’t thank you enough for praying for Bennett!! Let’s give all the glory to God!

Many of you know I lost my Mom to gastric cancer in 2009. One of the things she taught me was to “look for blessings.” Mom always called the hundreds of cards she received in the mail each week, “blessings.”

I included Bennett’s address because I thought some of you might want to send a “blessing” to Bennett and her family. You can tell them you’re a friend of mine if you want.

After I read Katie Anne’s journal entry this song immediately came to my mind. I Know My Redeemer Lives!!! My husband and I love the part at the end where she says, He lives, I spoke with Him this morning!

 

Have a blessed day!

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Sunday Encouragement-Praying for Bennett

I shared with you last week that Colt was starting preschool. I talked about how our daughter, Courtney is having to let go. As mothers we all know that letting go is a part of the process.

Sunday Encouragement-Praying For Bennett

Colt goes to preschool 3 days a week, and he was having a great week until Friday when he had three “accidents” in his pants. Unfortunately, if you have three “accidents” you have to sit out for 2 weeks to work on potty training.

Courtney called me Friday afternoon in tears. I reminded her that it was not the end of the world. Colt would be fine and we (her family) would all help with Colt over the next 2 weeks. This is such a small bump in the road.

I was reminded of this when I read an update on Caring Bridge from a family that I’ve been fiercely praying for.

I mentioned Bennett to you all about a month ago. Bennett is a 2 1/2 year old baby girl that is fighting for her life. She has been diagnosed with a high grade and very aggressive infant brain tumor called a PNET.

Bennett had surgery and 95% of the tumor was removed but the 5% that is left is actually a BIG problem . I can’t begin to tell you all that this family is going through!

Sunday Encouragement-Praying For Bennett

I want to share an excerpt from Bennett’s Mom that she wrote on Friday:

“I’ve learned that chemo is similar to eggs and everybody takes it a different way. There are lots of different cocktails of medicines for every diagnosis so it is really hard to compare notes. For us, oddly enough, the worst part of the treatment, by far, is the dressing changes. This seems rather odd to anyone outside of the pediatric oncology world because everyone inside it KNOWS that the ‘tape’ is downright terrible. When we first got here several nurses would tell me that the tape is what patients complain about the most and I found that hard to understand. Well believe me…it is! Bennett refers to her tape as stickers. Since she has a double lumen line she has 5 VERY ‘sticky’ stickers that cover her entire abdomen. Every Tuesday all of them are removed and replaced with new ones. Chemo attacks those cells that rapidly reproduce and that includes skin cells so her skin is raw beneath the stickers. It really hurts to have stickers ripped off of already sensitive skin. No parent should have to restrain their child for nearly 30 minutes while they scream continuously and look at you pleading “let me go” and “it hurts Mommy.” I really can’t describe it accurately but it is horrendous. Bennett’s skin is already raw and blistered after just 2 dressing changes. I dread Tuesdays and I’ll take extra prayers on those days.”

I was in tears as I read Katie Ann’s post about Bennett.

So today, I’m going to ask a favor from you. Would you pray for Bennett this week?  I’m especially asking for prayers on Tuesday morning.

I know I have many prayer warriors who read my blog so I’m begging you to lift Bennett up in prayer. Pray this week they might somehow find “blessings” in the midst of all they’re going through.

If you’re willing to pray for Bennett, would you leave a comment just saying, Praying for Bennett.

I don’t normally ask this but would you share this post and ask others to pray for Bennett. I know this family would appreciate the prayers.

This song by Natalie Grant tugs at my heart. (You might want to grab a tissue.)

 

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us…Ephesians 3:20

Have a blessed Sunday friends!

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