Prayer of Jabez and Me

I am reading again the Prayer of Jabez. I realized I need to review it . I’ve not been asking God to bless me: I’ve been asking Him to bless you – and many others…
NOW I am reviewing the scriptures and will place before Him my requests for blessing.
I am being specific as I write things down – and as has been true many times in the past, they are seemingly impossible. But God is involved, which turns this into an adventure 🙂
It is interesting – how there is a release and peace and joy in my spirit as I write in detail.
Many years ago, I wrote down the basic things I feel the NEED of in my life. Not the wants, but the needs. One is a home that is open to the sun and breeze filling the house. As I look back over the years, it’s amazing to me the ways in which He has answered. .
One other part of this whole picture is Psalm 37:4-7 (ESV)
4 Delight yourself in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
5 Commit your way to the Lord;
trust in him, and he will act.
6 He will bring forth your righteousness as the light,
and your justice as the noonday.
7 Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him. . .

I know am walking in an adventure. I will share with you as He answers.
How about you? Do you also want to walk in this adventure???
-Voni

A Death in Brazil

June 14,2018
A Post to catch up – this is a tougher one to write.
The death of our friend in Natal last week caused me to do some thinking on paper… Here it is
– The US protects families at death – although there is a cost for it.
Brazil does NOT protect families.
I’m not saying one way is better than the other.
Both are difficult, for they each involve deep loss.
I will share some of the realities of death in Brazil that we have experienced: without sharing all the emotions,
In Brazil:
When a loved one passes on, the body they leave behind has to be buried within 24 hours Normally embalming is not used.
Therefore, there is no luxury of extra time. You can figure out the math. 24 hours means 24 hours.
Someone in the family has to sign the papers for the body to be picked up from the home or from the hospital. The body is prepared (many times by the family), put into the casket and the hearse will take it to the cemetery. If there is enough time on the clock, the family may choose to have an open casket at a funeral home or a larger area such as a gymnasium, when there is a large crowd of friends. Sometimes the family only wants the closest friends, and they do a simple service in their home before going to the cemetery.
How does one notify family and friends of the death? Primarily by phone and texting, sometimes spot ads on a radio station.
Wherever a person is when they hear, all plans are dropped and they go to where the family is – standing by the casket.
People leave their jobs for the time necessary.
The body is taken to the cemetery. There, the grave diggers have prepared for the casket (no linings in the grave to hide the dirt. no reams of flowers. Worn ropes are holding the casket in place. Words of comfort and hope are spoken: prayers, then the moment comes all have dreaded. The casket is lowered, there is a thump as it hits the bottom, the ropes are pulled out and the family throws the first handfuls of dirt onto the casket, some may have a flower to throw, then those who are there turn tearfully away, leaving the loved one’s body behind. Depending upon the cemetery, the grave diggers may start throwing shovelfuls of dirt onto the casket immediately. I’ve been there when they did that, and it about killed me to hear and see that happen.
I was leaving someone I loved – no, not the person, but the body. But I knew that body.
This latter part is not different in Brazil ,in the states, in any country/
.We leave. but our loved one doesn’t come with us.
However – amidst the tears, there is HOPE. The longing for the day when we will all be together once again in the presence of the Lord, united in joy, moving into the next phase of our lives. We only have brief glimpses of what that life will be: but those glimpses are enough to make me excited and to look forward to that day!!!
The Lord is my Shepherd. I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in the green pastures.
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul
He leads me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death.
I will fear no evil.
His rod and His staff – they comfort me. . ..
part of Psalms 23
-Voni

UPDATE – BRAZIL – ME and YOU?

UPDATE – – – – – – – –

The obvious threats to Brazilian lifestyle (no food, no fuel, etc.) have changed to rationed fuel and food. Higher prices. More frustrations.Livng is more difficult.
Deep thankfulness that some order is being restored, mixed with uncertainties about the future,

So what should one’s attitude be? As we in the US who have been praying for the people in Brazil are aware we may also face these challenges here in the states. For life has become less stable in this world.
Whom can we trust? What is our foundation? What rock can we stand upon and know it is firm and safe?

For myself, the ONLY Rock I can totally depend upon is Jesus Christ my Saviour, God my Father and God the Holy Spirit.
I can trust no man I CAN trust God.
When Christ walked on this earth 2000 years ago, the world was also in upheaval. A universal lack of justice. Death and persecution… and that list goes on – from then until today.
God the Son incarnated into a man: who could be hurt, sweating as He walked the dusty roads, speaking until His voice was hoarse, carrying the pain of those around Him, desiring that they understand the hope He was sharing with them. .. and He is still doing the same today.
The change is: that Christ is now in heaven with the Father, and His Holy Spirit resides in those who follow His teachings.

No, I do not know what is going to happen in Brazil, nor the USA, nor anywhere on this earth. I DO KNOW that our Lord has told us to go and share the Good News He gave to us, to bring hope to the desperate, discouraged and lost. That is where we will find our fulfillment and joy.

Are we doing that? Being used by God to bring hope to those around us? If our answers are “no”, then my question is “why not?”

When we truly understand the loneliness of a life walking far from Christ, it creates a compassion inside of us along with love, enough that we are willing to be fools for Christ’s sake

-Voni