Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Newsletter - 1/1/13

The Nature In Us Newsletter

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Happy New Year!

I hope each and every one of you found something to be joyful about on Christmas Day. The hat I have on in the photo was Randal's gift to me and his request was for warm house shoes. It's winter here in Virginia so you can tell we both have our minds on staying warm. Did you know that if you wear a hat you stay warmer? There were reasons for wearing those nightcaps of old. It's said that most of our body heat escapes through our head so covering it keeps us warmer. I sure do notice the difference. I can go from feeling really chilly to getting hot.

© Donna with New Hat from Randal
We keep Christmas real simple in preparation but we do so enjoy the actual day of celebration of the great gift that God sent to us in His Son, Jesus. No matter how much is going wrong in my life, thinking about the awesome love of God towards mankind by becoming a man Himself to save us .... well, it sure changes my perspective.

There have been times in the past that I used to think, "well, God sent Jesus for the whole world, but that doesn't make me special." I know I've heard it said that if I were the only person in the world, Jesus would've still died for me. That statement never quite made sense to me ... it wasn't like it was actually possible to be the only person in the world.

Now that I know more Scripture, I can rest upon the fact that nobody can come to God unless the Holy Spirit draws them, so in essence, God has chosen me, and you if you've made Him your Savior, as an individual. Jesus said "No one can come to Me, unless the Father who sent Me draw him: and I will raise him up on the last day'' (John 6:44).  So the devil has no way to warp my brain on that issue.

Of course He's chosen everyone, because we all have a chance to come to Christ. But when you realize that no matter what the devil may try to twist around to make you think that God maybe didn't come just for you, this makes it clear that He specifically wanted you and me to be part of His family. It certainly personalizes it and has helped me to feel super special as His daughter. God loves us so deeply and did all of this to have fellowship with His crowning glory of Creation ... man made in His image. Awesome!

© Donna With New Rummikub Game
From Our Son Ben
Our son, Benjamin, lives in Oklahoma and we don't get together in cold weather so we save our visits for times when we can all roam the forests and nature trails somewhere. We have celebrated on the phone opening gifts and each of us taking pictures which are sent later in the day. This year we used Google Hangouts which is a video feature through the computer and internet.

We had a grand time. It began with a lesson in making an omelet. Ben had bought some special cheese and mentioned he wished he could have somebody make him an omelet. I suggested we do it when we got together on the video Christmas Day. So that was pretty cool. He did a great job for the first one and said it was absolutely delicious. We were cheering and applauding as he progressed through the cooking. Lots of laughter. The time (over 3-1/2 hours) spent with him online was of course the highlight of our day.

He bought us a new deluxe version of the RummiKub game.  We absolutely love this game!  We play it a lot and the numbers had worn off. I replaced them with by coloring with markers but they were wearing off again. You also couldn't tell much difference in the red and orange. The new game has green in place of the orange, so no more problem with that. The numbers are also cut into the tile so your fingers don't touch them. And the tiles/numbers are larger and made of some type of stone instead of plastic. We are excited to have the new game.  Wish you game lovers could come and join us!

We received a print earlier this year of Jesus by the artist, Warner Sallman. This particular one is entitled, "The Head of Christ." I remember having this in a laminated form in wallet size when I was a child. We have some friends back in Alabama at a ministry that we've supported for a long time.  When they offered to send us a print as an appreciation gift, I readily accepted the 24"x36" print planning to have it framed.  Fortunately I found a frame at Michaels's that would work with just a tiny bit of trimming so we did it ourselves at home after getting the frame for 40% off. I love a good deal! 

© Print of "The Head of Christ"
by Warner Sallman
View Enlarged Image
The colors on the frame were perfect for the print and I'm very pleased to have it hanging in the guest room which is where I spend a lot of time with the Lord. It has so inspired and comforted me many times. I'm a very visual person, so I am not surprised at how much I do get out of having it there to gaze upon. Get more info on this painting and the artist in a Christianity Today article.

I found the white carved words at Michael's when I purchased the frame. I took the photo as soon as we had hung it up, but after that decided to reverse the words since Love is the basis of all things. If we love well (ourselves and others) we will live well.

Lately I've been spending a lot of time near the Lord.  For those of you who know about my heart issues early last year, you will also know that the Lord healed me and from July until November I was gardening, hiking nature trails, loading and unloading things in the car, doing all kinds of housework and painting, etc.

In November I began having breathing problems that got my attention .... here's the rest of the story:  "When The Devil Returns."  Thank you so much to those of you who have already replied to that mailing.

Yesterday morning seemed clearer and more settled on "being already healed" and I feel I've received some great insight into the problem. Thank you for the prayers! I also noticed something very important when I was waking up ... you know when you're in that state before the brain kicks in ... I heard myself pray, "Oh Lord, let today be the day you totally heal me." OH NO!  The Bible says He already has and commands us to "only believe" to receive it.  But how much unbelief is mixed with what we call head knowledge belief.

© "Great Events of the Bible"
Completed December 2012
View Enlarged Image
I was definitely jolted me awake when I realized my thoughts. Out of the mouth (thoughts) comes the issues of the heart. It only shows that I have not yet renewed my mind in some areas.  I've certainly received a lot of healing already, but there are many pockets to my brain.  Praise God at least He keeps showing me Truth. I've always been one who had to know details and had to figure it all out. We're talking about an Almighty God that nobody can figure out, so I need to let go of that goal if it's subconsciously held tightly somewhere in my brain. Salvation and healing is so simple ... too simple to comprehend. Jesus died so we could have it and all we do is accept/receive it. It goes against my brain not to have to do something for something, but that's what the world teaches us.

Winter is our time for puzzles. It's a great brain activity, especially if you have to spend a lot of time on the computer for work. We keep one on the dining room table throughout the winter. We take turns choosing from a large collection in the guest room closet. Randal choose "Great Events of the Bible" which is a big one but with the varied colors and scripture verses on it, it's fun to put together.

© "Garden Birds" - Completed December 2012
View Enlarged Image
The one I chose after that is called "Garden Birds." It was a gift from my friend, Eleanor, many years ago. I love practical gifts that remind me of friends long after the occasion. Although this didn't have an occasion tied to it. She knew I loved puzzles. I think it was a re-gifting of something she had received.  We both love to do that! Not all things we receive are meant to be held tightly in our hands or homes. Many times I get something that the Holy Spirit says is for somebody else.

On the topic of re-gifting, I've had varied comments. I do know many friends who do this without guilt. To me, a gift is truly in the thoughtfulness and choice to give me any thing. It isn't the object itself that is most appreciated, although many times, as with this puzzle, it's just perfect. I've also freely given some things that I have truly loved, so it's not always that you re-gift because you don't like a gift. Interestingly in research, it's the receiver that is most offended at the thought of doing this. Givers of gifts had no problem with somebody passing it on. Read the research.

Randal and I wish you a very special new year filled with many blessings, the revelation of God's love for us, and the peace that passes all understanding. I like a new year beginning. It's just a flip of the calendar and just a day after the old year, but there's something magical in thinking about another year having passed by ... as if now that it's a new year, we can make it different than the old one.

I always feel as though I can recreate who I want to be for a new beginning. Of course, our first desire is to know God with all our heart (not just our minds) and for my body to be as whole as Jesus died for it to be. To be able to receive everything that came with The Cross transaction. God is so awesome!

Randal and Donna 
I pray you will take some time with the Lord to discover what His desires are for you in this brand new year.  May you discover His love for you in so many ways you never imagined and may that love overflow to others so they can see Jesus in you.

Speaking of a new year!  Share some of your new year resolutions or desires with us at The Nature In Us blog.  I want to dream and pray for your goals and desires for the new year. "Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.With God all things are possible!" (Mark 10:27)

Don't let anybody or the devil tell you that the desires of your heart are not possible.  They are!  Writing them down is the first step.  You can do that on the blog comments anonymously and I can agree in prayer with you.

Love, Hugs & New Year Blessings!

P.S.  Know somebody who needs to see something in this newsletter? 

Send them the link to the website:  www.TheNatureInUs.com.  

or the link to this newsletter post.  Thanks for sharing!  

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Posts Since Last Newsletter

When The Devil Returns  (DLW)

Sufferings and Eternity  (DLW)

Mix Up Your Routine to Boost Your Mood

Writing Heals

The Real Meaning of Christmas

Pets: Holiday Safety Tips

The Biblical Ministry of Angels

The Energy To Change

Ways To Reuse Plastic Bags

Newsletter - 12/15/12  (DLW)

Decorate a Tree or Bush For The Birds

Don't Discard Your Christmas Tree 

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The photo(s) and article are copyrighted. You may use either of them if you include the following credit and active link back to this website: © 2013 Donna L. Watkins - This article was reprinted with permission from TheNatureInUs.com. The link to use is: www.TheNatureInUs.com.

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