Monday, July 28, 2008

God's Hand of Protection

In the past two weeks, our family has experienced a few incidences that turned out to be great teachable moments for our kids to see God's hand of protection on our family.

On Thursday July 17th, we had gone out to run a few errands before eating dinner at Cici's Pizza (which just opened in our area a month or two ago but quickly became our favorite place to go!). As we were driving, we noticed the sky was quickly getting dark and knew a storm was about to hit...and boy did it ever hit! Once the floodgates opened, we were hit with a lot of wind, rain, thunder, and lightning. We stopped at a traffic light on a heavily traveled road and I heard a sound that I can only describe as a "pop". My daughter thought it was thunder, but I said it didn't sound like thunder. I didn't want to turn around and look because we were driving into Allentown and the thought actually crossed my mind that someone may have just been shot! The light turned green and as we started to drive away, my husband commented that the car behind us was pulling off to the side of the road. I then wondered if the person had gotten a flat tire and that's what caused the weird sound. We finished what we had to do and as we came back down the road on the other side, we noticed the car that had been behind us was still off to the side of the road. As we drove past, we noticed there was a car behind that one with the front end all smashed in. It was then that we realized the car directly behind us at the light had been rear-ended, yet they never hit us! On this particular road, cars are usually very close to one another when they stop at lights so we knew that God had protected us. My kids envisioned an angel standing behind our car stopping the car behind us from hitting our car.

On Saturday July 26th, we went over to my parents' house to go swimming. We were swimming for awhile and my husband said "we should get going soon". For some reason, I allowed the kids to continue swimming for awhile longer. When we did finally get ready to leave, my mom said the kids could have some muffins she had made that morning. I didn't want them to eat them there since we hadn't eaten dinner yet, so I told them to pick which kind they wanted (she had made blueberry ones as well as chocolate chip) and I'd put them in a bag so they could eat them later. Micah couldn't decide which one he wanted, so my mom finally said to just take what was left (there were four...just enough for each of us!). We were just about to leave and my dad stopped us and said he wanted to give us some blueberries so I could make blueberry pancakes (since Sarah made a comment about wanting me to make them and I said I didn't have blueberries to make them with! LOL!). So we finally got going later than we wanted to, but we quickly discovered it was no accident that we had experienced those "delays"!

We had only driven a few minutes when we came upon an accident that had happened just minutes before. The police and rescue workers weren't even there yet! There were 2 cars car had an older woman in the driver's seat leaning out of her car with a stunned look on her face. The other car was a jeep. There were at least 2 male occupants that had been in that car. The one was lying face down on the side of the road and the other was walking around with blood all over his face and shirt. I almost got out to see if there was anything I could do to help, but I saw someone already had a cell phone calling for help and another lady was standing in the street directing traffic and telling us to go. I didn't want my kids to see anything that would give them nightmares so we continued to drive.

A few miles down the road, we saw why the police and other rescue workers hadn't arrived at that accident yet....they were already at the scene of another accident!! We had to take a short detour because they had the road blocked, but we came out at a light and could see the accident that had also occurred on the very road we travel home on. We noticed two rescue vehicles were headed towards the first accident we saw, so my kids and I all prayed for the safety of those involved in the two accidents as well as the paramedics, firefighters, and police that were responding to those accidents. This is something we always do when we see an emergency vehicle with its lights and sirens on, although my son usually prays for them even if they don't have their lights and sirens on!

When we finally made it home, I pointed out to Sarah specifically the various delays that had occurred before we left and that any one of those (or a combination of some of them) prevented us from being involved in one of those accidents. I then told Sarah a few stories of some close calls I have had in my life and when I was done she said "Now I KNOW God is real!" I couldn't help but smile and thank the Lord for His protection, and how it enabled me to teach my children more about God.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

What? Me Worry?

Psalm 27:1 says "The Lord is my light and my salvation - whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life - of whom shall I be afraid?" I know there are definite times in my life that I find it hard to NOT worry about a situation. What an awesome thing to realize that we don't need to be afraid of anything!

The Lord is my light: I don't have to stumble around wondering whether or not I'm following the right path. All I need to do is seek the Lord and He will make it clear! He will show me the way to go. He is the light I need in the dark times. I have the promise that He is always with me!

The Lord is my salvation: First and foremost, He has forgiven all of my sins! I don't need to worry about what I did in the past or all my failures. They are forgiven....and forgotten! Praise the Lord!! He will save me from the snares the devil sets before me. I don't need to be afraid of what lies ahead because I know He will walk with me through it all!

The Lord is my stronghold: There are times I have faced things that I THOUGHT were too hard, but as a Christian I have the promise that He will NEVER let me go through anything that is too hard for me! He knows what I can handle, even when I don't believe it myself. There are times when the best thing to do is just rest in His loving arms. The Lord is always there to give me the strength I need to continue.

So the next time you are tempted to worry about something, remember that there is no reason to be afraid of anything that comes your way because the Lord is on your side! He will be your light, your salvation, and your stronghold. He is EVERYTHING that you need!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


My husband has vacation this week. WOO HOO! We aren't doing anything very fancy because we couldn't afford it, but we are having fun and that's what matters anyway!

After church on Sunday, we went to the Lehigh Valley Zoo (it use to be called Trexler Game Preserve) with our good friends and their 2 boys who are Micah's age. We are members at the zoo so we didn't have to pay anything to get in. We had four free passes as well, just enough for our friends and their kids so they didn't have to pay either! To "thank us" for giving them free passes, they took us out to lunch.

Monday we went to McDonald's for lunch and allowed the kids to play in the play place for about 2 hours. After that, we went bowling. The bumpers came up when the kids bowled and went down when my husband and I bowled. I was the biggest loser! LOL! Oh well, it was fun anyway!

Yesterday we went to the airport to see my dad (or pappy to the kids) since he is a police officer there. My husband also works there so the kids got to meet some people their daddy works with and some their pappy works with. My dad drove them around the airport in the police cruiser so they could see the airplanes and stuff. He turned the sirens and lights on once, which made Micah just beam! Sarah and Micah got to wear police hats for a little while and they had little badge stickers so they were walking around pretending to be police officers. Micah usually says he is going to be a either a fireman or a police officer when he grows up. He is REALLY into firemen and fire trucks, so he was really excited to see a fire truck as we were driving around the airport. Sarah mentioned that I had promised Micah that one day I'd take him over to the fire house in town (it is right up the round from our house) and see if they'd let him sit in the fire truck (she remembers being put in the truck when she was little even though it scared her to death! LOL!). Well my dad saw the fireman coming out to get in the truck so my dad pulled in and asked if he would mind giving a ride to his grandchildren! The fireman said sure and you should have seen Micah's face just light up! I wish I had brought my camera!!! I bet you could have seen Micah's smile from a mile away! He was beaming from ear to ear from the second he got into the truck to the time he got back out! LOL! My dad said the next time we come down to visit, he'll see if he can get one of the firetrucks to spray water for Micah. I will DEFINITELY be bringing my camera next time!! The kids also got to meet the canine officer at the airport! Sarah was scared of the dog at first because he is big, but she soon warmed up to him. The dog loved the kids too and was constantly coming over to be petted or to sniff or lick them. The kids thought it was hysterical when pappy locked their mommy and daddy in a jail cell. After we left the airport, we took the kids to Chuck E. Cheese for lunch and allowed them to play all afternoon. When it was time to pick prizes, it took quite a while for them to choose what they wanted; but they both finally settled on cotton candy (Blue for Micah and Pink for appropriate!) and a little rocket launcher. They had a blast shooting their foam rockets all over the house when we got home! It was a long, but extremely fun-filled day for the kids!

If the weather remains as nice as it has been all week, we are going miniature golfing today and then we'll probably go swimming at my parents' house. Thursday we'll need to do laundry to make sure we have enough clothes for the weekend so we may just play some games and stuff at home and have it be a more relaxed day.

Friday we are leaving to go up and see Bob's family. The two nights in a hotel will cost us more than we spent the entire week on everything else we did! Bob's niece has a little girl who is turning 1 on Saturday and they are having her party at Knoebels Amusement Park. The party doesn't start until 2 pm, but we're going to get there first thing in the morning and spend the whole day at the park with the kids. That should be a great way to end our vacation!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

I'm Surrounded!

I noticed something really neat this morning during my devotions. I was reading Psalm 32 and noticed a word that was used in two verses. Verse 7 says "You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance." and verse 10 says "Many are the woes of the wicked, but the Lord's unfailing love surrounds the man who trusts in him."

I immediately began to think about what it means to be surrounded. If something is surrounded, it means it is enclosed on all sides. It is hard to escape if you are surrounded. It is also hard for someone else to get to you if you are surrounded.

I realized that when we are in the center of God's will, we are surrounded by God. That is truly an awesome place to be because it makes it harder for Satan to attack us! Most people think that it is a bad thing when they hear someone yell "I'm surrounded!!" My prayer is that we ALL are able to say "I'm God!!"

Thursday, July 3, 2008


Tomorrow is the 4th of July aka Independence Day where we as Americans celebrate our freedom. That was on my mind as I opened the Bible to read this morning. The song "I Am Free" also came to mind (it happens to be the 11th song on my Playlist in case you wanted to listen to it). I then started to read and just had to smile at how the thoughts God had placed in my head before I started to read the Bible had prepared me for a particular verse that God obviously meant for me to take notice of while I read.

Psalm 25: 15 says "My eyes are ever on the Lord, for only he will release my feet from the snare." I read that and God let me know that the word "release" could be replaced with the word "free". I had to say OK God! I get it! You are trying to teach me something about freedom today! What do you want me to learn? Well here it is!

Where are most traps placed? Are they placed up high? No! They are placed on the ground so that a person or animal walks or steps into it. Many traps snap shut to prevent what was captured from escaping.

When we fall prey to one of Satan's snares/traps, it can be easy to focus on the trap and we try to get ourselves free. Many people have stepped into one of Satan's snares and they don't even realize that they are trapped! They are limited in where they can go because Satan has ahold of them. Some Christians may eventually be able to get out of one of Satan's traps, but it will take a LONG time. We also remain injured for a long time, which means we can be captured again easier because we aren't as strong as we were before.

What we need to do if we find ourselves trapped in one of Satan's snares is to immediately look to God for help. He can free us from the trap AND heal our wounds so we stay strong and can possibly avoid falling into that same trap again. We will be stronger after being freed from one of Satan's traps because we looked to God and allowed Him to free us from the trap. By allowing God to release/free us, our wound won't be as bad and it will heal quicker and easier than if we tried to get out of the trap by ourselves. By keeping our eyes on the Lord, we can also AVOID some of the snares Satan sets before us because the Lord will lead us around the traps.

So the next time you find that you have become ensnared in one of Satan's traps, don't look at the trap....look at GOD! Only He can truly free you from what ensnares you. For those of you who have been wounded by one of Satan's traps, look to God and ask Him to heal you. You will be truly free when you keep your eyes on God because He will never lead you into a trap!