Tell Me About Your Daddy Part Two

Rosalynn LasleyPrayer & Fasting, Redemption0 Comments

Over the last several days since my previous blog post, I have done a lot of reflecting and praying.  It has been difficult for me to really dig deep into the truth about who God is as a Father, and not think about my own dad.  The reflection and prayer have had me making notes of where some of my emotional scars have been left behind by my earthly dad, as well as it has caused me to face how those scars have hindered or skewed how I have viewed God along the way.  It is still a process at times.  There are still times the scars I have cause me to struggle to trust Him, but reminding myself of His truth gets me back on track every time.  This week I want to discuss God’s promises, and the fact that He always shows up.  Growing up, I had a dad that would constantly make promises he didn’t keep.  I don’t know if he made them knowing he would never keep them, or if he was one of those people that had good intentions but lacked the follow through.  He wasn’t around often enough for me to know.  I learned the hard way that … Read More

Why Doesn’t She Like Me?

Jen CudmoreTrials0 Comments

I invited her over half a dozen times. She never came. She always had an excuse why she couldn’t make it. So finally I gave up. I could read her loud and clear. She didn’t want anything to do with me. The trouble was, I had no idea why. Did I say or do something to offend her? She never let on that I had upset her.Did I somehow intimidate her? She’d never seemed that uncomfortable in my presence. Did she not think we had enough in common? I thought we always had plenty to talk about. It made me sad, because I really believed we could have been good friends. I learned long ago that not everyone gets along well, even Christians. Sometimes it’s personality differences. Sometimes it’s religious differences. Sometimes it’s lifestyle differences. We can’t please everyone, so it’s silly to try. Yet we feel the sting keenly when other women don’t like us. No one likes to be rejected. No one enjoys being misunderstood. The disapproval of others can be hard to deal with, because women are relational creatures. Yet our self-worth cannot be tied up in whether or not other women show us appreciation.  Nor can … Read More

A Child Can Be A Witness of Jesus

Guest BloggerFaith0 Comments

What would you say to a child when he/she began to tell you the stories of the Old Testament?  Or the Gospel?   I will never forget the time when a student of mine, who was in first grade, told me about these wonderful and beautiful stories.  This one remarkable little boy, who was 6 years old, witnessed to me about Jesus and the love He has for all of us. At the time, I was working at a beautiful christian school.  I knew Jesus, at least I thought I did.  Afterall, I worked at a christain school, I was a mom of 3 beautiful children, I was a faithful wife, and we would attend church on an occasional Sunday, or maybe just for the holidays.  All until that one day… My first year of teaching at the christian school, I was embraced with love and kindness, and a new curriculum I wasn’t used too.  Jesus’ word was a part of every lesson I taught.  I even had to teach Bible Lessons, which I thought at the time was a, “no brainer.”  I would tell myself, “I got this, I know Jesus and He knows me.” As the days went … Read More

Thorns, Weeds, Rocks, and Other Gardening Hazards

Carol DunfeePrayer & Fasting, Trials0 Comments

I come from a green-thumb family. My grandparents had a huge garden full of delicious vegetables. I remember spending summer afternoons shelling peas with my grandma. My parents continued the tradition of gardening and have shown our kids how much fun it is to dig potatoes out of your own garden. I have even tried my hand at it a few times. I was able to grow delicious zucchini, tomatoes, peppers, and cilantro. However, my inability to stay on top of the weeds has resulted in my husband banning me from gardening.  Somehow, the summers I chose to garden were the ones where I was either pregnant, nursing a baby, or chasing a toddler….not a great combination for pulling weeds!! I grew up hearing the parable of the farmer from Matthew 13. A farmer sowed seed on different kinds of ground. Some seed fell on a hardened footpathand was eaten by birds before it could sprout. Some seed fell on shallow, rocky soil where the roots were unable to grow down deep to save it during the hot summer. Other seed fell among weeds and thorns, where it wasn’t able to compete for the nutrients in the soil. Finally, some seed … Read More

No Shame This Monday

Guest BloggerFaith0 Comments

“Fear not; for thou shalt not be ashamed: neither be thou confounded; for thou shalt not be put to shame: for thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth…” Isaiah 54:4anoun: shame 1. a painful feeling of humiliation or distress caused by the consciousness of wrong or foolish behavior. When I was young, I did many foolish things. I was truly confounded at a very young age, and I lost my moral bearing. With no moral compass, I rarely considered whether something was “right” or “wrong.” My only boundary was whether or not I would get “caught.”  With so little a foundation and a cracked one at that, it was not long before I began to have regrets. However, I knew not what to do with those regrets, so I just stuffed them and went on – continuing to make choices to try and fill an ever increasing void and sense of loss within my soul.  I spent a dozen years alone in my struggle. The endless attempt to find happiness was being overtaken by this gnawing awareness that I was losing the battle. And then…along came Jesus to save my soul! Hallelujah, yes! From the miry clay to the solid Rock. However, the past had its hooks and … Read More

Which Chair Is Yours?

Carol DunfeeFaith0 Comments

Several years ago, we were in Spokane on a Sunday, so my husband and I visited a fairly new church. The message so inspired us that we brought it home to our small group to share. The message still stays with me today. I don’t remember what the name of the church was or even who the speaker was. I just remember the message. It explains so much about our country, our churches, and our homes. The speaker had three empty chairs on stage. He asked us if we were first, second, or third chair people. He went on to explain… Moses was the man God chose to lead the nation of Israel from the slavery of Egypt to the freedom of the Promised Land. While Moses took the spotlight, Joshua was his right-hand man. He was always nearby when Moses had an encounter with God. Joshua wasn’t satisfied with watching Moses have first-hand encounters with God. He wanted those FIRST-CHAIR encounters for himself. When Moses died, Joshua received the role of leading Israel into the Promised Land. The nation was mostly successful during Joshua’s life-time. He was close to God. People recognized it and willingly followed his leadership.However, the … Read More

Fear NOT this Monday…

Guest BloggerFaith0 Comments

“Fear not; for thou shalt not be ashamed: neither be thou confounded; for thou shalt not be put to shame: for thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth, and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any more.” Isaiah 54:4 “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee…” Isaiah 43:2a Have you ever been trapped by water?  Where you are in over your head, and the power of the wave or the current is so strong that you cannot overcome it? Perhaps you cannot tell which way is up because you are being thrown head over teakettles by the surf. Or you are being dragged along and under – with nothing to hang on to and no one within sight to help. In all cases, there is a fear that takes over as you are unable to find air…It is possible to be drowning emotionally.  It is possible to not be able to see, to not be able to handle the pressures of life, to not be able to get any sort of footing at all.  Trauma can bring on a emotional tsunami. And where do you turn when you are upside down in the ocean of … Read More

Second Hand Stories

Carol DunfeeFaith0 Comments

I grew up hearing stories about my grandpa. He passed away when I was a newborn, so I never got to meet him. My mom has told me that he was fun-loving. He treasured his two daughters. He loved music and often entertained his family with his guitar, his harmonica, and his singing. My mom has fond memories of singing along with him. She honored his love of music by singing with me when I was little. She encouraged me to dance and sing to the music playing in our house.  My grandpa had an indirect effect on me even though I never knew him. Then there was Gramma. I didn’t have to rely on stories to learn about her. I got to meet her in person. She was my hero. She made everyone around her feel special and loved. She worked hard tending her enormous garden, canning fruits and vegetables, sewing her own clothes, and preparing the most amazing meals. She loved God with all her heart. I wish I had recordings of all our late-night conversations where she told me about her history and about her God. I knew her FACE TO FACE. Many of us who are “religious”, … Read More

Just a blessed day!

Guest BloggerFaith0 Comments

I took this picture yesterday on a drive from Soldotna to the Portage area yesterday. It is absolutely amazing to me how majestic God’s tapestry is, especially here in Alaska. So many beautiful photo opportunities, but my trip would have been really long if I had stopped for all of them. I was driving for a field trip with my daughter and her fellow 2nd graders to the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center near Portage Glacier turn off. Not only was the drive so beautiful but the weather at our destination was even more amazing!! Sunny, warm, and no wind! Anyone familiar with that area knows how uncommon that combination is. Our guide Kelli shared multiple times how they do not get weather like that, like ever. She even gave a simple statement that she thought someone else must have known we were coming and allowed for such great weather. (Giving God some glory right there!) Even when a breeze did start, it wasn’t too bad and actually felt really nice! Here is a picture I took from ‘the point’ at AWCC. The center is nestled right in the middle of 4 valleys, 2 mountain ranges and multiple bodies of water, that may … Read More

Struggling In Marriage: When God Says “No”

Jen CudmoreMarriage0 Comments

Any time we’re faced with a trial, our first prayer is often “God, save me – quick!” And usually, when we beg for immediate deliverance, He tells us “No.” I really don’t like it when He does that. He is God Almighty, Maker of Heaven and Earth, the One who commands the oceans and lights the sky. Nothing is too big for Him to handle, if He chooses to intervene. So why doesn’t He rush to the rescue? When I first admitted that I was really unhappy in marriage, I asked God for help changing my attitude. But many of my prayers revolved around Him changing my husband. He said “No.” Then I asked God to intervene in my home, to prevent my husband from doing things that would deeply hurt me. He said “No.” I prayed that He would give me a list of things to fix so we could get on with life and find happiness once again. He said “No.” I wasn’t brave enough to ask God to release me from my wedding vows, although I did reach a point of total despair where I actually considered it. I knew He would say “No.” So when God … Read More

What is a Mother?

Carol DunfeeMotherhood0 Comments

A mother is someone who nurtures her children. Sometimes those children are biological. Sometimes they are legally adopted or are step-children. Sometimes they informally “adopted” as grandchildren, nieces, nephews, siblings, in-laws, students, or friends. No matter what kind of mothers you have in your life, the really good ones have a few things in common. 1. They love us. 2. They tell us when we are wrong. 3. They encourage us to rise to our full potential. 4. They applaud our successes. 5. They do what’s best for us even when it hurts (us or them). 6. They comfort us when we need a shoulder to cry on. This Mother’s Day, let’s take time to thank our special mother-figures. Reward their efforts with a phone call, a letter, or some special time. If your mother-figure is gone, do a kind deed in their name. The greatest thanks we can give them is to pass on that “mothering” to someone else. To my mom and other “mothers”, thank you for investing in me. Thank you for setting such a good example of motherhood. Thank you for caring so much! I love you more than I could ever express! –Carol

One rock

Guest BloggerFaith0 Comments

It all started with one rock. Now this wasn’t a tiny rock, but it wasn’t a huge one either. I’m sure we all know the story of David and Goliath and what an impact one rock had in that story. Well here’s another rock with a big impact for me. This one simple rock has had such an effect on the windshield of my suburban. (I know you are probably giggling or smiling a little, but I promise I have a point!) When this rock hit the windshield just under the drivers side windshield wiper of my car, it hit with full force and actually startled all of us in the car because of the loud noise it made when it hit. I was bummed to find that it had made quite a ‘ding’, especially since I hadn’t even had my car for 6 months. I thought to myself that I should probably get it repaired before it got worse, but talked myself out of it since there was a chance I would get more dings in my windshield as the winter season here in Alaska continued. Those rocks help vehicles grip on icy roads, but boy can they do some … Read More

4 Things To Remember When Other Marriages Seem So Perfect

Jen CudmoreMarriage0 Comments

When your marriage is failing, sometimes it’s hard to be around other couples who appear so happy. You know the ones I mean. They are free with PDA. They express nice gestures and brag about each other. They say romantic things on Facebook and post cute pictures. Their sweetness is just another painful reminder of what we don’t have in our own life. Sometimes seeing them makes us mad. Sometimes it makes us jealous. Sometimes it makes us lonely. And sometimes we just want to hide away and cry our eyes out. If, like me, you’re struggling in your marriage and every one around you seems to have a perfect relationship, don’t feel bad. It’s normal to cringe a little. But it doesn’t have to be torture. Here are some things to remember: 1) Right now we’re overly sensitive, and that’s okay. We need to accept that this is a season of life and we won’t be this sensitive forever. We just have to be careful not to let our emotions get out of control. We can’t be snippy or rude, because it’s not their fault we’re having problems.  2) Everyone struggles with something. So they got the marriage part … Read More

“COME – NOW!” THIS MONDAY!

Guest BloggerFaith0 Comments

Healing is a process.  Emotional healing is very complicated and difficult.  It is compounded by our desire to have someone actually care and walk the distance with us and the wake-up call that no one does (because only ONE can). Additionally, emotional healing cannot be “seen.”  If you break your leg – “Well, may I sign your cast?”   But if it’s your heart or your mind that is broken – “Just build a bridge and get over it.” When I was in Kindergarten, I lost my mittens.  After school, I dug through the lost and found box and found them. Consequently, I missed my bus.  Thinking I was bigger than I really was, I decided to walk home.  (Warning: this pattern repeated itself many times in my life..) I merrily skipped my way, oblivious to ANY danger, to the place where I knew I needed to cross the street.  Suddenly, I was trapped!  My parents had told me to NEVER cross the street if I could see ANY traffic coming from either direction …Well, no matter which way I looked – I could see a car coming…I obviously lacked the understanding of  the relationship between speed, distance, and time – and so there I stood on the wrong side … Read More

To Love or Devour??

Carol DunfeeFaith0 Comments

Over the past several years, I have observed a disturbing trend. It happens in the most conservative circles. It happens in the most liberal circles. It happens everywhere in between. It seems to know no boundaries of politics, race, or religion. It eliminates rational conversation and turns both sides into emotional train wrecks. Here it is: We devour those we disagree with. Anyone who holds a differing opinion is fair game for slanderous online comments, for vicious name-calling, and sometimes even physical retribution. We do it over breast-feeding vs. formula-feeding. We do it over schooling choices for our children. We do it over whether or not we believe in healing and speaking in tongues. We do it over which charities we choose to support or not support. We do it over gay rights vs. religious rights. We do it over racial inequalities. We do it over abortion vs. pro-life. I am not siding with anyone here. I see this on both sides of social issues. We convince ourselves that those who hold opposing views must be wrong…so wrong that they must be evil…so evil that they must be devouredby our indignation. Wait a minute. Aren’t those who disagree with us … Read More

Be Still

Guest BloggerFaith0 Comments

Happy Thursday to you all! Sorry that I haven’t posted these past two weeks! I wish I could say that I was on some tropical beach soaking in some sun on a family vacation, but I wasn’t. I basically was just really struggling to find something to share with you all. Every time I would think about it, I would draw a complete blank. I thought- “eh, I’ll just throw something together”, but I really didn’t want to do that. I wanted what I shared to be more intentional and more importantly, from the Lord. I was trying to think of what I could share from my life that God is doing. Unfortunately, I thought to myself that nothing really exciting is happening in that realm either. I guess you could say that I feel like I’m kind of in a rut. I’m in a rut mentally, physically and spiritually. I can see why many people escape for vacation during the months of February-April. But can I really blame it on the weather, the time of year? No, I can’t and so I’m not going to. So why do I feel this way? This past week, I spent lots of personal time trying … Read More

Monday Confessions

Guest BloggerFaith0 Comments

There are many patterns in Scripture. There are many patterns in nature (ie: vertebrates have at the end of their appendages five-boned digits as a hand, a paw, even a flipper).  There are also patterns in the way God approaches us.  For example the following verses all have a similar pattern:Isaiah 1:18Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.John 4: parts of:16,17,18,26 (KJV)16 Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither…you have had five and the  one you live with … I AM He.John 8:10-1210 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?11 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.  In each case, the Lord has positioned Himself in a place of authority.  He … Read More

When Mercy Meets Your Mess in Marriage

Jen CudmoreMarriage0 Comments

We’ve talked about the Unchained conference here before, but there’s one thing I must confess. It took everything in me to just to show up there. When I purchased my ticket, I was ecstatic! I had read 4 of Vicki’s books and couldn’t wait to actually meet her. Yet when I arrived at the Sheraton Friday evening, a little early so I could help with check-in, my heart was so heavy I had a hard time plastering on that fake smile. Because all week I had been struggling with a huge burden– I thought my marriage of 15 years was over. I was pretty unhappy with God for letting me endure so much hardship. I didn’t want to be in a room full of Christian women where I would have to pretend I was fine. I was not fine! I had reached one of the lowest points of my life, and I felt God had let me down. But I knew God wanted me to go to the conference, so I went. And I had a good time. Vicki gave some great tips on letting go of the fairytale women so desperately desire and the shame we harbor in our … Read More

The Healing Begins on Monday

Guest BloggerFaith0 Comments

Monday, March 16th, seems like a long time ago. In that blog, I said I would write of my journey from brokenness to health.  Since then, my husband had a stroke. He is back at work now. The only residual effect of his near death experience is the mountain of mail we are receiving from Providence Hospital as they attempt to squeeze blood from our turnip…Needless to say, I missed writing the Monday he was in ICU. The subsequent weeks I have written, not from the past, but from the present as God intervened and extended the health and the life of my husband.  Praise to the mighty King! I am so thankful!It is time to pick up where I left off as I share the journey to health:“Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth into singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the Lord.”  Isaiah 54:1As I mentioned in the blog on March 16th, the LORD gave me the entire chapter of Isaiah 54.  I knew it was for me because every verse made perfect sense and literally jumped … Read More

It’s Monday – Thank You

Guest BloggerFaith0 Comments

My husband goes back to work today. He will be getting on a plane and flying to Kenai, then Nikiski, and then across the inlet to Trading Bay.  Two weeks ago he was flown from Trading Bay to Providence Hospital  – in a medevac helicopter, strapped to a backboard and unable to speak. When I saw him in the ER – two things went through my mind…First, I thought “life changing…” I had no idea at that time what the outcome of this situation was going to be.   As I posted last week, I have witnessed the loss of life.  I get the fragility of life and the finality of death.  The second thought I had was more of an experience with God.  For when I saw Kedge laying on the gurney with tubes and wires, 7-8 ER personnel all poking, prodding, and tending to every detail of his LIFE, I was overwhelmed with pure Love for Kedge and from God.  All shadows of doubt, fear, and bitterness were obliterated.I do not know “why” God had this in His plan for our lives these last two weeks. I do know that over 120 women were all praying for him from the moment I received … Read More