Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The Power Of Hope

By Andrew Wommack

Most people give more importance to love and faith than they do to hope, but that’s not what Scripture says.

Look at 1 Corinthians 13:13:  "And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity."

Since love is the greatest of the three and hope is just before love, that means hope is the second greatest, even above faith. Hope is more powerful than they realize. Something the Lord shared with me that really made this truth come alive is that hope is a positive imagination.

Romans 8:24-25 says, "For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? [25] But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it."

Here, Paul was saying that hope is for something that isn’t seen, something that isn’t present. Once it becomes present, there’s no longer any reason to hope for it. So, hope means you’re looking at something that you can’t see. You might be thinking, Well, if you can’t see it, how are you looking at it? You can see things with your heart, and this is what I believe the imagination is.

In Isaiah 26:3, it says, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” The word “mind” here is translated “imagination” four other times in the Old Testament. So, you could quote this verse this way: “The Lord will keep you in perfect peace when your imagination is stayed upon Him.”

A lot of Christians would reject the idea of imagination because they nearly always relegate it to something that’s childish. But your imagination is your ability to see with your heart what you can’t see with your eyes, and you use this every single day.

You may not have thought about this, but did you know that you couldn’t get home if you didn’t have an imagination? It’s because in your mind, you picture your house and how to get there.

You think in pictures. An example of this would be if I said “apple,” you wouldn’t see the letters a-p-p-l-e—you’d see an apple. You might picture a red apple or a green apple, but I could refine what I wanted you to see by saying “a big red apple.” The more words I used to describe the apple, the clearer the picture would become in your mind. Whether you know this or not, you can’t think of something you can’t picture. You need to be able to picture something to truly comprehend it.

Your imagination is how you think, how you meditate, how you understand, and how you remember things. You really can’t do anything without an imagination. You have to take the Word of God and let it excite your imagination.

It says in Genesis 6:5, "And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually."

This is talking about deep thoughts, not just surface thoughts. God deals with us on a heart level (1 Sam. 16:7), and He sees the imaginations of our hearts. The reason I’m spending so much time on this is because a lot of people just don’t think that imagination is that big of a deal. But the Lord dealt with people according to the imaginations of their hearts.

Hope is more than “I want this to happen” or “I wish this would happen.” Hope is your imagination. Every time the Scripture talks about imagination in a positive way, it uses the word hope. When Paul talked about hope, he was seeing things with his heart. He was taking the promises of God, and through those promises, he was seeing God cause him to succeed. And sad to say, most people, because they don’t understand this process or how important this is, they allow their imaginations to be controlled by other things—and they see themselves failing. They see themselves poor or sick.

But when what God has told you becomes a vision on the inside of you, you will wait for it with patience (Rom. 8:25). People who can quit and give up are people whose imagination is negative—they’re seeing the negative side of something instead of the positive side of it. They don’t have hope.

Whether you know it or not, your imagination is dictating how your life goes. And if you aren’t aware of what I’m talking about and don’t think this is important, all it means is you aren’t controlling your imagination. It’s being manipulated and controlled for you, and you see the negative.

"For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he." (Prov. 23:7a)

The way you think is the way your life is going. And this may not bless some of you, but it’s intended to help you: If your life isn’t going well, if things are a mess, it’s because you’ve conceived it in your imagination. Your imagination is like soil. Soil doesn’t care what kind of seed you plant in it; the moment it’s planted, the soil starts producing. It’s the same thing with your heart and your imagination. Your imagination will conceive something and automatically start making it come to pass, whether it’s positive or negative. It’s like your spiritual womb. That’s a big statement.

The imagination isn’t moral or immoral; it’s what you focus your attention on that affects it. You get to choose whether your imagination is positive—which is hope—or negative, which becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

I could spend a lot of time talking about this, but the bottom line is you need to shut off all the negative things that are grabbing at you. Luke 21:26 says that people’s hearts would fail them for fear, looking at all the things that are happening on the earth. You have to stay in God’s Word and let it dominate you, or I guarantee you, the unbelief of this world will extinguish your positive imagination. It’ll make it become vain.

So, I’ve laid a foundation for this, but there is much more to share that I think would really help you. God will put a positive imagination, a hope, in you that’ll make a difference, and you’ll be believing and looking for better results than you ever have. Hope is powerful.

Again, it’s the second greatest thing in the Christian life, greater even than faith. You’ve got to understand the power of your imagination if you’re going to harness the power of hope. As I share about hope in my newest teaching, The Power of Hope, I believe that this could establish some things in your life that would move you in a positive direction and make a huge difference for you.

If you’ve been hopeless and you know you’ve been looking only at the natural circumstances and negative things in your life, I pray that God would help you to change your focus and start seeing the positive things He has for you. I believe that as you listen to this teaching, a positive imagination will come alive in you. Hope will start motivating you and driving you toward God the Father. Thank You, Jesus.

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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

More Than Just Sowing and Reaping

by Andrew Wommack

LUKE 6:38, "Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again."

This verse reveals one of God's cardinal laws that will work in the spiritual realm, as well as the physical world. Just as we "give" seed into the ground to receive back multiple seeds, so it is with everything we give.

Whether it's money, possessions, an emotion such as love or hate, prayers, or our time, we will reap a harvest of whatever we give. We reap exactly what we sow and proportional to the same measure that we give (Gal. 6:7-8).

"He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully" (2 Cor. 9:6). This law works on positive or negative things that we sow.

Although this is an unchangeable law of God, it can be overcome by a greater law in much the same way that we can escape the law of gravity by using the greater laws of thrust and lift.

The negative things we have given don't have to come back to us if we apply the greater law of forgiveness (1 Jn. 1:9). Likewise, the good things we have sown can be voided if we don't continue in well doing (Gal. 6:9).

God is our source, but God uses people. If we pray for finances, God is not going to make counterfeit currency and put it into your wallet. He will use people to get the money to you. So, it is not always as simple as praying for money and receiving it the next minute.

We need to believe the Lord hears and answers our prayers, and then pray for the people He's going to use to deliver the answer. This could mean any number of people such as our employer and the people who buy our goods. Ultimately God is your source, trust Him.

Visit Andrew's website.

6 Best Headache-Healing Foods

Several over-the-counter drugs and lots of sleep are typically prescribed to ease headaches, which can vary greatly in pain, pressure and even location.

But what about attacking the pain with more natural sources? Here's an article that gives you six foods to reach for the next time you feel a headache coming on.

Read the article.

Not All Beetles Are Bad: Beneficial Garden Bugs

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Assassin Bug From Our Garden
From Birds and Blooms

Not all beetles have such fanciful names as fireflies and ladybugs. But many of them have something more important in common: They’re good bugs for your garden.

Coleoptera, more commonly known as beetles, is the most diverse insect order, with more than 350,000 species, 24,000 in North America alone. So there’s a pretty good chance that you’re going to encounter beetles in your garden.

While it’s true that some beetles are pests (Japanese beetles come to mind - see below), many more are a boon to gardeners, pollinating plants, preying on pests or helping to compost decaying plant and animal material.

Remember that if you use toxic pesticides, you often kill off all the good bugs for your garden, including beetles. I always say that instead of using chemicals, it’s better to have a diversely planted garden that provides lots of habitat for hardworking beetles and other garden bug pollinators and predators.

This article shows some of the most common beneficial beetles in the garden. If you see one of these, let it be! Read the entire article.

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Japanese Beetles Rise Again - Go The Nature Way  
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Pet Safe Fertilizers for Lawn & Garden

Photo Provided by
by Jackie Carroll

Your pets depend on you to keep them safe both indoors and out. That includes using fertilizer that is pet friendly. Knowing that you don’t have to worry about your pet’s safety when he/she plays outdoors gives you peace of mind so you can focus on enjoying the time you spend together.

Read this article:    
Using Pet Safe Fertilizer for Lawns and Gardens

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Abba, Daddy, Papa and God the Father

by Donna L. Watkins

Image May Be Subject to Copyright -
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Sometimes people ask me why I use the term "Abba" or "Daddy" or "Papa" to talk about God.  As far as the Trinity goes, Abba refers to God the Father, who created us for relationship with Him.  It's a term of tender endearment by a beloved child who has an affectionate, dependent relationship with their father.

God walked with Adam and Eve daily in the Garden of Eden (Gen. 3:8).  God wanted to spend time with His crowning creation that was made in His image.  To walk with them means closeness, communion and intimacy.  God wanted Adam and Eve to live in beauty and provision - no sickness, no death, and no lack. Man ruling over a perfect, blessed world was God’s perfect will, but they gave it all away to Satan.

Satan is called the "prince of the power of the air" (Ephesians 2:2). Think of the evil that can come from bad weather.  There are Christians who think that God sends bad weather to judge people.  If God is in control of the weather, why would Jesus rebuke the storm and winds?

The Bible also calls Satan the "ruler of this world" (John 12:31) and we know that his methods of ruling are always against us and one of the ways is to try to deceive us as he did Adam and Eve.  He wants us to believe that God is not good. God walked with Adam and Eve daily in the Garden of Eden (Gen. 3:8). God wanted to spend time with His crowning creation that was made in His image. To walk with them means closeness, communion and intimacy. It was a special time of day for all concerned.

Jesus referred to God as His Father more than 150 times and spoke of God being "our Father" 30 times. The term has become so familiar in the church that we don't even think about the significance of it. Jesus instructed us to call God "our Father" because it reveals the gentle, kind and loving nature of God (I John 4:8). Paul used the term "Abba Father" in Romans 8:15, which was an affectionate term that a child would use for his father, much like the word "Daddy" or "Papa" is used today.

 "And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father" (Galatians 4:6).

One of the benefits of being God’s son is receiving the indwelling of His Holy Spirit. This allows the believer to address God the Father in the same manner that Jesus did. The word “Abba” is an Aramaic word used by Jesus, and it carries the idea of God being our “daddy”. It is a term used for intimacy and affectionate fondness. It removes the idea of God as our strict Judge and carries the idea of Him being a loving Father who cares, understands, and is our best friend.  (Source:  Andrew Wommack's Living Commentary)

I like to picture a scene from "Anna and the King" movie. It's very similar to "The King and I" but in this movie, the king has many children from many wives, but there is one little girl that has especially stole his heart and that becomes obvious as the movie progresses. In one scene he was doing what kings do with a whole crowd of people bowing around the throne, while this little loved daughter comes in through the huge doors and runs down that path right to the throne and Daddy's arms.

That's where I go when life gets too overwhelming. Many times we have no way to change life's circumstances, but the peace of God that can come from knowing that our Abba loves us and that "this too shall pass away" fills our cup to overflowing. We rest in His loving arms and by faith take hold of His provision for us. The devil never stops desiring to steal from us or to kill and destroy our very lives. Paul prays for us in Ephesians 3 that we might "grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge - that we may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God."

In John 14, Philip asked Jesus to show them the Father, and Jesus replied in verse 9, "Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father...'' Hebrews 1:3 tells us that "The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of His being." Exact representation. All that Jesus was and is shows us who God the Father is and the Bible itself tells us that God is love. He doesn't just love us, He is love to us (I John 4:16).

Many times people have an intimate relationship with Jesus, but don't really know how to mange the Father part of the Trinity. Sadly there are many people that have had horrible earthly fathers and that title alone is enough for them to avoid God the Father. We were all given freewill when God created man and that means we all get to choose how we will live this life, whether as a moral, loving person or as one who allows the devil to use them for evil. We were all created in His image which is good, but we all have a choice as to what we make of ourselves.

Don't blame our Father for the choices mere men make for themselves. Psalm 27:10 tells us that "when my father and my mother forsake me, the Lord will take care of me." When we run from God the Father we are forsaking the great comfort that He can offer us. Instead of avoiding Him, we need to run like the King's daughter down that aisle to the throne and her Father's arms. There we find the only true comfort designed for our souls.

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Natural Way to Get Duckweed Out of Your Pond

by Donna L. Watkins

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Mallard Ducks in Our Pond
One Mother's Day we were thrilled to see a pair of Mallard Ducks in our small 5x8 frog pond. They were swimming in circles and diving for food which would've been our tadpoles, newts or baby frogs, but I didn't want to think about all of that. I was just enjoying the fact that we had Mallards in our little pond. They didn't stay for very long. The female walked out and the male followed. What a sweet treat for Mother's Day morning.

Little did we know that they had left us a gift behind. One that would last forever and multiply rapidly .... Duckweed.

Duckweed multiplies rapidly and can infest a small pond in a matter of days turning an otherwise beautiful pond into an unsightly mess. It is one of the smallest free-floating plants found around the world. Measuring 1/16" to 1/4" in length with fine roots extending about 1/2". Duckweed floats on the pond surface absorbing nutrients from the leaf undersurface. We were having to scoop this stuff out on a weekly basis. Once it fills the surface of the pond it just grows a deeper and deeper layer of plants.

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Green Frog Amidst Duckweed in Pond
It's possible for each Duckweed plant to reproduce into another every 24 hours. That means that in just two weeks, a single plant results in up to 17,500 plants which covers the entire pond surface depleting oxygen and blocking sunlight. If you have fish or submerged plants they can be killed. If you have submerged algae it will wipe it out. That's a nice free and simple solution to an algae problem, but it's really just an exchange of problems. Duckweed competes with their growth by shading them and depriving them of the light needed for photosynthesis.

Generally there are herbicides that are recommended for the kill, but we have our yard designated and certified as a Backyard Wildlife Habitat, so we don't use chemicals.  Amphibians are so very much affected by chemicals.  They are an indicator species for environmental problems and global warming since they are the first to be affected by it.  [Read:  Indicator Species and Proud of It.]

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Duckweed and Water Lettuce
We were blessed to discover that Water Lettuce keeps the Duckweed in control. Water Lettuce's early origins were recorded to be upon the Nile River.  Experts disagree on whether Water Lettuce is native to the United States. It has been present in Florida as early as 1765 when explorer, William Bartram, described and drew the plant in Lake George.

It is considered a weed with no wildlife or human food uses recorded, so be sure to keep it within the confines of your pond and not allow it into any public water source. It makes an attractive water feature that is very easy to control by hand-picking plants out of the pond when they become too dense.

The rather spongy foliage has a unique texture and is light green color is pleasing to the eye. Water lettuce has very thick leaves that are hairy and ridged. There are no leaf stalks. Water lettuce roots are feathery and light-colored. The flowers are inconspicuous.

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Water Lettuce with Baby Tree Frog
The plant grows from 1-6 inches, multiplying by sending out side shoots of more plants. These show up in the form of velvety rosettes, which resemble small heads of lettuce. An evergreen, the long dangling roots serve as a safe haven for small fish and frogs.

As our Tree Frogs go from being tadpoles into the form of a frog, they enjoy sitting in the shelter of the Water Lettuce leaves.

Here in Central Virginia the Water Lettuce does not winter over. We buy 3 plants each Spring for less than $10 and they multiply as the weather warms. As they multiply the Duckweed begins to die off.

In Florida it is considered an exotic pest and has been listed on the Invasive Plant Species list.  It forms large infestations preventing boating, fishing and other uses of lakes and rivers.

Master Naturalist Program Locations by State

Master Naturalists are trained to be stewards of our natural environment and to teach these skills to others.

Almost every state in the United States has a Master Naturalist Program, often developed in conjunction with Universities and County Extension offices. These programs are similar to the Master Gardeners Programs around the country.

Enrollees receive many hours of classroom and field instruction. Upon graduating from training, Master Naturalists are expected to complete a number of hours of volunteer service in their first year and 20 hours annually thereafter along with annual continuing education requirements.

Get a listing of programs by state.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Newsletter - 5/15/14

View This Newsletter On the Website.

"The tendency today is to put the emphasis on service.  Beware of the people who make usefulness their ground of appeal.  If you make usefulness the test, then Jesus Christ was the greatest failure that ever lived.  The lodestar of the saint is God Himself, not estimated usefulness.  It is the work that God does through us that counts, not what we do for Him.  All that Our Lord heeds in a man’s life is the relationship of worth to His Father.  Jesus is bringing many sons to glory."
 -- Oswald Chambers

Hello Dear Friends!

Me & My Hunk - 3/16/78
Chosen For Makeup Demo
Universal Studios, Hollywood, CA
During the first year of our marriage, while we were living in Oklahoma, we took a trip north through the Grand Canyon and out to California.  We entered the incredible highway system of Los Angeles and visited Universal City Studios in Hollywood.  There were many things of interest ... getting to see how they filmed the parting of the Red Sea, which we rode through on a tram, was very interesting.

While attending a demo on how they do makeup, they chose Randal and me to be the folks to be transformed into Frankenstein and His Bride.  They placed us back-to-back so we couldn't see what was going.  As the audience had a giggle now and then, I wondered what we were going to see when it was all over.  When they turned us around, it was quite shocking! 

I had this photo they took with my camera made into wallet-size photos and as I wrote to people back on the East Coast (we didn't have email then), I said we had only been married a year, but it had already taken its toll on both of us.  Our first anniversary was 3 weeks after the photo.

For those who are married, do you remember how delightful and wonderful it was to think about your soon-to-be husband.  Dreaming dreams of the terrific couple you will make seeking life's goals together.  Having somebody to understand and be in total interest of your every emotion and need? By now I am hearing giggles.  It doesn't seem to end up that way.  Of course, one of the reasons is that we don't get a relationship so we can fill our needs ... we get a relationship to give 100% to another human being. 

For so many, that's a HUGE awakening.  Reality is that nobody can get that deep-on-the-inside hole filled with another human form.  We weren't designed to be able to do that.  God put that empty area within us so we would crave and desire and spend time with Him, the only One who can bring peace and joy into our lives no matter what the circumstances.  However, God did provide for us if and when we choose a mate.  He made male and female different so that as one flesh we would be made whole to operate and function in this world.

There is scientific evidence that men and women are built differently to complement each other, but we tend to see those differences as something frustrating and difficult.  We each have unique strengths and need each other to complete the picture in all of life's issues.  Even if you are not married, everybody has relationships with the opposite sex and will still need the other's perspective.  We are not to be the same.  These differences are built-in by design.  Watch this 22 minute program from "Mad About Marriage" to get some divine revelation on how you can improve your relationships with the opposite sex.

Looking at the "mess" of the Universal Studios photo made me think about how we must have looked to God before Jesus paid the price for our sin.  We were placed in Him on the Cross and risen with Him from the grave to become the righteousness of God.

"For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him" (2 Cor. 5:21).

We are now joint heirs with Christ.  The whole idea that we share equally with Jesus who has inherited everything is beyond my comprehension.  It's a huge blessing, but also a big responsibility as any such inheritance would be in the natural world.  Consider it this way:

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Great-crested Flycatcher
In the same way in which a check made out to two people cannot be cashed without the endorsement of both parties, so our joint-heirship with Jesus cannot be taken advantage of without our cooperation. Unaware of this, many Christians are just trusting that the Lord will produce the benefits of salvation for them. They are acutely aware that they can do nothing without Him, but don't realize that He will do nothing without us (Eph. 3:20).

The way we place our endorsement on the check is to believe what God promised in His Word and act on it as if it were true. IT IS! Jesus has already signed His name to every promise in the Word. We aren't waiting for Him. He is waiting for us.  (Source:  One Year With Jesus in the Gospels)

Our Great-crested Flycatchers finally returned on the 2nd of the month.  They are such pretty birds.  They enjoy our deep woods in the back for nesting locations.  One year they nested in a box that wasn't far from the screened porch.  That was fun to watch.  These birds generally place a snake skin in their nest and let a bit of it hang out of the hole apparently as a "threat" to any that might consider entering.

The easiest time to watch these birds is when they choose a dead limb on a tree to perch and hunt for insects on the wing.  They fly out from the branch grabbing the insect in flight and then return to the same branch to eat it.

Although bug-eating birds are beneficial at times, like the Flycatchers that do eat beetles, crickets, grasshoppers, etc., these birds enjoy a variety of food that we would not want to see eaten, such as butterflies, dragonflies, and bees. It will also take a small lizard or skink and dine on fruits if available.

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Indigo Bunting
We had an Indigo Bunting visit on the 4th.  Randal and I both got a chance to see it but the only picture I got was blurred since he had gone from the ground to a tree much further out.  However, we've had them visit before, so I include a previous photo taken in another year.

They are so bright blue that they seem to light up the area they are in.  There's no way to miss seeing it when they are here.  They actually don't turn bright blue until their second breeding season. 

This bird is actually a member of the Finch family.  They prefer brushy pastures and edge habitat where brushy fields meet the forest.  That's definitely not our habitat so we only see them for brief moments as they migrate through to their preferred nesting areas.

Indigo Buntings consume grasshoppers, beetles, cankerworms, flies, mosquitoes, cicadas, weevils and aphids. Obviously beneficial for the garden.  They also eat grass, goldenrod, dandelion, thistle and other weed seeds.  A very beneficial bird to have in your habitat.

The Gray Catbird is singing his song while the Mrs. tends to the nest.  He sits from a perch and sings away.  Watch Video of Gray Catbird Singing.

In the evening the male kind of "mews" to the female.  She will sometimes respond also.  It sounds like whispering sweet nothings in her ear before bed.

Our Eastern Fence Lizards are doing their pushups and the males are fighting each other for the females.  We place some stumps of wood around the property for habitat for lizards since we enjoy their antics so much.  They love disappearing into the bark or crevices of the stumps as they age and crumble.

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First Eastern Gray Tree Frog on Deck This Year
A few years ago we had an Eastern Gray Tree Frog mate on our deck and deposit the eggs in the birdbath.  [Read more on Eastern Gray Tree Frogs.]  We have a small pond that we put in for frogs, dragonflies and such, but this must've been one lazy Missy that didn't want to make the trip from the deck to the pond ... or one smart Missy because that year we had a high number of Green Frogs which are large frogs and they do enjoy eating eggs and tadpoles.

So, I had the decision to make on what to do with the eggs.  I decided to get a 5-gallon bucket and put them in and watch the process of growth.  Little did I know .... you can only have so many eggs per area of water .... and a whole lot of other things too.  I decided to take the challenge on raising some of them and you can read all about my Eastern Gray Tree Frog Adventure beginning with this post. 

It was a time-consuming job in some ways but it was very exciting to see the little guys sprouting those legs and that cute little face beginning to form.  My husband began calling me Mama Tad, a name I still have today whenever one of what we assume to be the offspring visits me on the deck ... like this first one of 2014.  He arrived when I was sitting on the deck.

He was right by the chaise and since my hands were clean (they are VERY sensitive to chemicals and should only be handled if you have no creams or substances on your hands.  Their skin is super thin and absorbs such things quickly, which is why they are an indicator species of environmental issues.  I talked to him and told him I was Mama Tad in case he'd heard his mom's story about me, and that he was very welcome to enjoy our deck and all the moths that fly about the light at night.  We turn it on specifically so the frogs can get their fill.  After our chat I put him on the deck again and he went about 3 feet away and settled in the shade of one of the railing posts to watch me.

Since there is such a problem with loss of pollinators, we are so happy to see so many of them in our  habitat.  We have so many different kinds of bees and wasps.  It's truly exciting.  They are very evident when our holly bushes and trees are in bloom.  They go crazy over those tiny little blossoms.  I filmed a video of the pollinators on the holly, if you decide to view it, there's an enlarged option at the bottom right of the video screen that will let it 'popup' to full screen.  Be sure to notice all the wonderful Spring bird songs in the background.  How many of them can you identify?

Thanks to Rainbow for sending me this graphic on fear.  One of my major verses right now that I am using to stand in faith is Proverbs 3:5:

"Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding."

I found in this healing journey walk that I really had no trust in the Lord.  I would say that I did (religious answer) but when I would have conversations with God, He would point out to me that the foundation of my healing journey is faith and without trusting Him, faith is not activated.  [Related Article:  Totally Forgiven, Is That How You See Yourself?]

The example that gave me a visual picture is that of a Daddy telling his child to jump into his arms.  If the child has been raised to see his Daddy as always providing good, there will be no hesitation.  But if the child never got to see his Daddy because he was serving in the military and was told that his Daddy killed people and didn't provide any care or concern for the child, he wouldn't be able to jump when confronted with this command.

We've been told that God does a lot of bad things in this world.  We're told He kills people because He needs them in Heaven.  He sends tornadoes and hurricanes to destroy towns that have sin in them (what town doesn't have sin in it).  He makes bad things happen to you to teach you something.  Although we might say we love this God, it's not hard to understand that our minds and heart would definitely not agree with that.

We have to know that the devil does evil and God does good.  We must begin to expect good from God because what we expect or imagine will become real in our lives.  Jesus said He was the exact representation of the Father (Heb. 1:3) and Jesus never put disease on anybody.  The Bible tells us many times that He healed ALL.  If it was God's will for somebody to be sick and diseased, then Jesus would not have been able to heal all.

Many people will believe that disease is God's will.  They believe that He can heal, but that He probably won't heal them.  The question I want to ask when people tell me that God puts disease on people so they can learn something is this:  "If you truly believe that, why are you going to the doctors to fight against the will of God?"  If you don't learn the lesson this time, you'll be going around the mountain another time with another disease.

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Me At Brookgreen Gardens - Murrells Inlet, SC
There's a home in our neighborhood that has some huge Chaste Tree bushes/trees.  They bloom all summer long and in my favorite color, purple, and actually have a fragrance.  What is there not to like?  They are drought tolerant and the bees and butterflies love them.  I thought I'd do a bit of research on the bush to see if we had any spot that might allow one.  [Article: Chaste Tree For The Garden.]

I have known about Chaste Tree as an herbal remedy since it helps with PMS and menopause symptoms.  I used a formula called Wild Yam and Chaste Tree while going through menopause.

Here's a tidbit of health information to close with.  Don't cut yourself short on sleep hours.  Sleeping only 4-5 hours a night induces mental impairment equivalent to a blood alcohol level above the legal driving limit. (Read More)
Much Peace and Many Blessings to YOU!

P.S. Anything in here that might help somebody you know?
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Posts Since Last Newsletter

You Are Wired For Love

Our Abba Daddy

The Ethics of Native Plant Gardening

Doctor Speaks on Vaccination Indoctrination

Newsletter - 5/1/14 (DLW)

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America's Top 50 Worst Charities

Recover From Germ Phobia

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Newsletter - 4/15/14 (DLW)

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Simple Nest Boxes for Cavity-Nesting Bees

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Heart Health for Humans and Pets

I Can't Is Not A Good Decision

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A Review of Canine Chews

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Eternal Life is Knowing God, Not Living Forever  (DLW)

Monarchs Need Our Help — Now!

New Jerky Dog Treats - 100% USA Grown and Sourced

Knowing Yourself As Deeply Loved

Many Reasons Why Trees Are Important

Pet Sitting Made Simple

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© All photos unless otherwise noted are the property of Donna L. Watkins and cannot be displayed without approval. 

Thursday, May 8, 2014

You Are Wired For Love

By Dr. Caroline Leaf

Have you ever thought about what it means, really means, to be made in God's image as it says in Genesis 1:26?

This is something I have spent much time meditating on over the years, especially when I was still in clinical practice. I would have patients coming to me with lots of baggage, which included all kinds of evaluations and assessments of all their learning problems and emotional issues.

Although I have a healthy respect for the diagnostic tools they had gone through and that I had been trained to administer, I felt we had to dig below the surface of the issues to separate out the real person from the person they had become. Only then would I really know how to help my patient.

And so I pursued a line of research that would show me that God made us PERFECT in His image and that the negatives in our life come from voluntary choices we make, reactions to events and circumstances and things that can happen to us that we have no control over (Ecclesiastes 7:29; James 1-3: Philippians 4:4).

But despite all this, we still were originally created in the perfect image of a perfect God - and this is the core of who we are. It also becomes the departure point from which we deal with who we have become.

I found this to be the case as well in my scientific research - that we are designed brain and body to only think good thoughts and be in health (3 John 2) and that toxic thinking ravages the brain body in the same way sickness ravages the brain and body.

In Science this is called the optimism bias. God made everything and science is a name for describing how the universe and humans and animals and plants and the forces of nature work. So using science to understand God more is also a way of increasing our admiration for this mighty God we serve.

Instead of thinking of yourself as a poor old sinner saved by grace; rather think of yourself as a magnificent creation of God who has made some bad choices or experienced some knocks in life and who, through the grace of Jesus Christ, can choose to appropriate his grace and receive forgiveness and cleansing. This wonderful choice actually rewires the brain back to its original state each time we acknowledge Him.

This is where science and grace meet. You see - we are wired for love! And as we practice His presence daily we step into this, which is our original design and we follow the command in Matthew 5:48, which says to "seek after perfection as He is Perfect."

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Our Abba Daddy

He Is Our "Abba"
by Andrew Wommack

Mark 14:36 "And he said, Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt."

Although God was referred to as our Father in the Old Testament, Jesus' frequent use of this title brought a whole new understanding of our relationship with God. Jesus referred to God as His Father, and He spoke of God as being our Father as well. This infuriated the religious Jews of Jesus' day who considered it blasphemy to call God their Father, because they understood that to mean they were equal with God.

We are instructed to call God our Father, revealing the kind, gentle, loving nature of our God. The term "Abba" is an affectionate term that a young child calls his father, which corresponds to our term "daddy." It is a term used to express intimacy and affectionate fondness. It removes the idea of God as a strict judge and carries the image of Him as a loving Father who cares, understands, and is our best friend. "Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God" (1 Jn. 3:1).

We are sons of God by adoption. Jesus was the Son of God by nature. As Jesus said to the Jews, ye are of your Father the devil (Jn. 8:44; Eph. 2:3).

However, Jesus purchased us and made us adopted sons of God.

We are not just heirs, we are joint-heirs with Christ. To think that we share equally with the one who has inherited everything God is, and has, is beyond comprehension.

Visit Andrew's Website.

The Ethics of Native Plant Gardening

by Benjamin Vogt

I look at my garden and see a novel ecosystem, as many places on Earth are – places altered in large or small measure by our actions. There will never again be prairie where I live. It would be easy to say well, hey, at least I have a garden, and to go ahead and plant whatever I think looks pretty.

But I know I can have my cake and eat it too by using natives. A garden will never be wild, and the best it can do is echo or invoke the memory of what wildness is in our world of shrinking pollinators, songbirds, grasslands, and clean water.

But every time I grow a native seedling – a Liatris, goldenrod, aster, or milkweed – I know something more: that my slow work in transforming my garden into an all native garden is a protest. It is a protest to all the ways in which we use this world and know are ethically wrong. For me, my garden has become a moral imperative, just as so much human art has been.  Read Benjamin's entire article.

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