Been there, Not going back!

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My fingers are cramped, my back hurts, my eyes burn, and my neck feels as though its frozen in place as I sit slumped over the legal pad and my pen skirts across the paper filling page after page as it writes the chapter about my visit to hell.

“Take a break, child.” The Lord whispers in my ear. “Go lay on the couch and rest for a while.” He gently adds. I lay my pen down and standing I flex my fingers, groan, and stretch my back muscles. Taking a deep breath I slowly walk to the couch and stretch out giving a long sigh of relief. The pen has been writing furiously and now I can take a time out.

My head has barely touched the pillow when suddenly everything turns to black. Black as no other black I’ve ever seen. My body has suddenly been transported from the comfort of my couch to a place that is so dark I can’t see my hand in front of my face. I’m scared. My body begins to shake and I sense Someone has stepped up behind me. Peace begins flowing through me like a gentle wave. No words are spoken.

The blackness is so black there’s nothing for my eyes to adjust to. It isn’t like walking into a dark room where some light peeks in and I can see at least a shadow. No this is so black it can’t be described! Suddenly faces begin to appear in the darkness. I suck in a breath as they come closer and closer to where I’m standing. Men and women, teen-age girls and boys, with expressions of fear, anger, shame, confusion, and hatred written in their eyes and across their faces as though in large dark ink. I take a step back. Somehow these people are not allowed to touch me but they have. They’ve touched something deep within me.

A woman, with her head thrown back, screams a bone chilling scream as she furiously twists her long hair and pulls frantically. She screams an agonizing scream, yet no sound comes from her mouth. A man leans toward me and pleads “help me,” yet no words are spoken. His face is a horrible mask of agony like nothing I have ever witnessed.

Face after face appear and pass before me with torture written on them, eyes filled with emptiness, screams of pain and desolation. A man appears and comes toward me with his face contorted with absolute hatred and his eyes meet mine with a putrid violence. I jump back bumping into the white robe behind me. “You’ll be okay, My child” is whispered in my ear as gentle arms wrap around me from behind. I feel His beard on my cheek and the comfort of His arms.

I turn my head to look at Him and ask, “Who are these people?” His eyes fill with tears. “Those who have rejected Me,” He replies with sadness. “But can’t You help them?” I ask. “No child. They chose this place. I gave them every opportunity but they chose this as their eternal home.” I want to scream! I want to beg Him to take them out of here! I want to run from this horrible place. The comforting arms drop from their hug and He takes a step back.

Suddenly the faces are gone and I’m standing as stiff as a telephone pole. Red hot flames have encircled me. Orange, red, yellow, flares up on all sides of me and only my head and eyes move as I look around me. Furious fire engulfs me, yet not one spark touches me.

The Man is beside me. “You’re safe” He says. The flames grow hotter, taller and I can’t believe I’m not even feeling the heat from them. “I am with you,” He says. The flames lick at me but don’t touch me, they grow hotter still and looking skyward I can see the flames are all around me and above me. There is no escape! “I am always with you, even in the fires of life,” is gently spoken.

Poof, the flames are gone!

I’m standing in the total blackness again. My mind is whirling. I have a million questions I want to ask but suddenly my attention is drawn to a white building appearing out of the pitch blackness. It’s a small country-type church. It begins turning. The whole building is slowly turning counter clockwise on its axis. It begins to turn faster and gradually it begins to spin faster and faster and faster until it spins off its axis and flies out into the darkness and disappears.

Suddenly I’m jolted from the darkness back onto my couch with the blare of the telephone ringing just inches from my ear. Confused and disoriented I reach for it. I can barely speak.

I have no idea how long I spent in hell but there’s one thing for sure, I’m not going back! The Lord gave us free will and we are to choose whom we shall serve. Christ or Satan – we can’t serve both. I’ve made my choice as to where, and with whom, I will spend eternity, have you?

~~~~~

“And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you shall serve.” Joshua 24:14

Author Sue Cass- “Dawn’s Light” – “Pursuit” – “Laying Down my Net-A Walk of Faith” – “Sacrifices of a Saint” – “Seek My Face.”

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http://www.suecass.tateauthor.com

elah501c@bellsouth.net

Blessings to you. 🙂

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L.A.W.S. It’s free.

There are four needs that we humans have besides the usual, clothes, food, housing, and health. We strive for these. We seek them with a vengeance. Our hearts, minds, bodies, and souls yearn for them. Can they be obtained? Yes! And they are free.

L- LOVE: We all want to be loved.

We will do a whole variety of things to gain love. I tried for years to gain the love of my parents. I was told, “if you do this…..then I will love you.” “If you stop doing that…….then I will love you.” That isn’t love! It’s control and manipulation. Romans 5:6 tells us, that when we were still sinners Jesus loved us. He loves us so much He suffered a horrific death! That’s love! No matter what we have done/do/or will do, God through His Son Jesus Christ, loves us. There’s no if’s, ands, or but’s about it!

A – ACCEPTANCE: We all have a need to feel accepted.

We wear certain styles of clothes according to the latest fashions.  We work hard so as not to be called lazy, we join a club or a group. The list can go on and on, all in the name of being accepted by others. In todays society with all the “political correctness” we may accept standards that are not of God in order to not be called “racists” or “homophobics” or, or, or. Young people join gangs and even some of us join a church, just for the feeling of being a part of something. There is only One who accepts us just as we are. Jesus gives us complete acceptance! Not by what we do but because of who He is. “Therefore receive one another, just as Christ also received us,”‘ to the glory of God.” Romans 15:7

W – WORTH: We all want to feel worthy. Who determines our worth?

An example: I’ve gone to a garage sale and step up to a table. Two identical ceramic clay vases sit side by side. One is bright and shiny, no flaws, no cracks. It looks to be perfect. The other is cracked, dirty, and lopsided. I take hold of that one and ask, “how much?” The owner tries to take it and states, “Oh I should have thrown that away! It’s not worth anything!” I hold it gently in my hands and state, “How much? I want it.” The dickering goes back and forth with the owner determined to throw it away. I finally state, “I absolutely love this broken, dirty vase. It’s to die for!”  We all have used that term, “it’s to die for” at one time or another and have gone to great lengths to get what we want.  For Jesus that wasn’t just a an off the cuff comment, He meant it! He determined, by going to the cross of His own free will, our value and what we are worth.  If we rely on others to determine our worth we can be highly disappointed.”But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved.)” Eph. 2:4-5

S – SECURITY: We all need to feel secure.

Do we feel secure in our marriage, our job, our finances, that our children will grow to be productive and loving adults? In this world there is nothing that is absolutely secure! Worldly security does not exist! There is only One who can give us absolute security, for this world and the next. We can be secure in the fact that we will never be separated from Christ’s love. No matter what we do, don’t do, say, don’t say, think, or don’t think! “Neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 10:38-39

We are secure in the fact that if we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior we will spend eternity with Him. “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” Roman 10:9

We’re secure in knowing that He has us in His hands and no-one can rip us from His hands! “And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand. I and My Father are one.” John 10:28-30

We can be absolutely secure in knowing that Christ is looking after us and has our best interests at heart. “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28

No matter who we are, what we have done, how dirty our past, we are loved unconditionally, accepted just as we are, held as invaluable and worthy, and secure by His great love. God through His Son Jesus Christ gives what the world cannot!

Find the love, acceptance, worthiness, and security by praying a simple prayer asking Jesus Christ to forgive you of your sins and come into your heart as your Lord and Savior.

~~~~~

Note: Parts of my article are borrowed from Pastor Randal Popham’s sermon this morning. Thank you for reminding us, Pastor.

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http://www.suecass.tateauthor.com

elah501c@bellsouth.net

Blessings to you. 🙂

I confess, I slept with Elvis.

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Tennessee was hot and humid. The air conditioning felt wonderful but I had cabin fever and couldn’t stand it any longer. I rose early and hopped in my car and headed out. The typed directions lay on the seat beside me. As I drove along the highway my mind went back to the
1950’s.

Elvis Presley was my idol and just hearing him sing would leave my knees weak and eyes filled with tears. I wasn’t one of the those screaming little girls. I would just faint with adoration. I didn’t care if he sang Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star it would leave me panting for more.

I had his name written all over my gym clothes, I had my hair styled like his, and my bedroom walls were plastered with his pictures. I was a real number one fan, and still am, minus the pictures on my walls, hair style, and gym clothes. I still have his albums though.

Ah, but I regress.

Elvis Presly's Graceland - 8-9-09 I stayed here

Pulling into the hotel parking lot my pulse is speeding out of control. Elvis’s music is playing through loudspeakers and can be heard throughout the parking lot. Graceland, Elvis’s home, is across the street. I check in and throw my suitcase on the bed. I’m tired but I’ve got to get across the street! Hurry, hurry, Elvis is waiting.

Gathering with other Elvis fans it blows my mind! Elvis is alive! Not at McDonald’s, not in George Town, but right here! Entering the museum my eyes bug out. I need a neck brace to keep my chin from hitting the floor.

Elvis Presly's Graceland - 8-9-09 Holly cow the records!

An entire room, all four walls, are covered from top to bottom with Elvis’s gold, silver, and platinum records. It’s almost overwhelming.

The men look but the women ooooh, awe, and whisper as we look at Pricilla’s wedding gown. I can only envy her.  Elvis Presly's Graceland - 8-9-09 009

“Oh my gosh!” I almost scream. Elvis had a car exactly like my very first car! I can’t believe I had a car like Elvis and can barely pull myself away to look at other things. I want to jump in it and shout, “varoom, varoom.” Memories flood my mind. Elvis Presly's Graceland - 8-9-09 Just like my white one

 

Elvis Presly's Graceland - 8-9-09 006 me-cadillac   His infamous pink Cadillac.

Lisa Marie had her own jet. All the comforts of home. Elvis Presly's Graceland - 8-9-09 019 Lisa's jet

Having a full tour of Elvis’s home, the grounds, and Lisa’s jet I slowly walk across the street back to my hotel. Elvis’s voice sings out, “I’m so lonesome tonight.”

The elevator doors close leaving Elvis singing in the lobby. “Come on Elvis, lets go to bed.” I whisper entering my room.

Sitting on the edge of my bed, I gaze at him for a long moment, as he softly sings in my head, then snuggle down into the blankets.  “Night Elvis” I whisper. 

Elvis Presly's Graceland - 8-9-09 I never dreamed I'd sleep with Elvis

Oh come on, you didn’t really think…………….? Shame on you.

Elvis Presly's Graceland - 8-9-09 013 grave -teddybears

  ~~~~~

“… bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.” 2Cor. 10:5

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Blessings to you.

 

 

 

 

Hawaiian sunset

 

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Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 021                                           Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 036                             Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 053 Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 130                                      Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 106                                                    Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 085           Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 108            Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 111

Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 075            Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 112

 

Hawaii - 9-20-09 - 9-26-09 110

“The sun also rises, and the sun goes down. And hastens to the place where it arose.” Ecc.  1:5

~~~~~

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elah501c@bellsouth.net

Blessings to you. 🙂

Hi Ya’ll (that’s Southern talk)

Me-Grist Mill

 

Hi Ya’ll. At the risk of sounding like a Hill Billy, welcome to my neck of the woods. The photo’s are of places jus’ down the road a piece. Translation – close to home. Callaway Gardens and Helen, Georgia are two of my favorite places.

  Grist Mill - Helen 

The old Grist Mill Store in Helen, Georgia. It’s a fully operational grist mill and you won’t believe the stuff you can buy in there. From Grits to cast iron skillets to home grown honey and freshly ground wheat. It’s an awesome little store and my first stop when entering town.

wheat Grinder     It still works!

A winged beauty of God’s  creation   butterfly up close

 

Callaway Chapel

The Lord’s House in the woods. Weddings are in demand at this little chapel all year round.

Peace and serenityCallaway Lake

 

Me  & Kitty  Miss Kitty – I still miss her.

Posey My traveling fantail goldfish, Posey.

When I lived in Tennessee and would come to Georgia to visit friends she rode along in an ice chest and then enjoyed her home away from home in a large aquarium. She was a real trouper.

The Hootch - Helen

The Hootch - Helen       Helen - the Hootch

We call it “The Hootch” It’s the Chattahoochee River that runs through North Georgia and is great for “tubin” (riding tubes down the river and right through town).

Thanks for visiting. Now ya’ll come back, ya’ hear. Translation – Come again. Love seeing you.

 ~~~~~

“But we know that there is only one God, the Father, who created everything, and we live for Him. And there is only one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom God made everything and through whom we have been given life.” 1 Cor. 8:6

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elah501c@bellsouth.net

Blessings to you. 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oh sweet memories

imagesCALSYUX2The sun shown brightly on my face, the wind whistled through my hair, and the freedom I felt as I flew down the hill was the freedom I craved.

Growing up in the country I didn’t have a bicycle but my brother did. He’s five years older than me and he would let me climb on his big bicycle and even though my feet couldn’t reach the peddles I would jump from one side of the cross bar to push a peddle and then bounce over the bar to other side to push the other peddle.

That sense of freedom while riding a bike has stayed with me throughout my life. images[7]  When I married, what was my wedding gift to my husband? A bicycle! He was raised in an orphanage and had never owned a bicycle that was his very own. All the kids shared what toys were given to them including an old bike.

I remember the joy on his face when I presented his very first, his very own bicycle. He jumped on that bike and took off down the street yelping and hollering. The whole neighborhood could hear him. I stood laughing with tears streaming down my face. I never thought a simple gift such as a bicycle could make a grown man so happy.images[8]

We spent many hours riding our bikes.  We rode around the neighborhood almost daily, we’d take our bikes and go to Tybee Island in south Georgia and spend our days playing in the ocean and riding our bikes all over the island. Whenever we went for a day away or a few days away we took our bikes.

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Closer to home we’d toss our bikes in the back of the truck and ride all around Stone Mountain Park.

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My husband was very athletic. I was athletic back then, too but nothing like my honey was. He was a runner. He’d ran marathons all over the country, he played tennis, and we went ice skating a few times until I busted my butt so many times I could barely walk.

If we weren’t riding our bikes around the mountain we were hiking up it. Well, let me put it this way.  While I huffed and puffed my way up Stone Mountain,

           imagesCAD44OMK  he’d already RAN up the mountain, down the mountain, and was on his second trip up the mountain grinning like a Cheshire cat as he passed me. He was always kind enough to wait for me at the top and comfort me as I passed out on the warm granite stone.

I kept his bicycle for several years after he went to be with the Lord. I just couldn’t bear to let it go. The sweet memory of our times with the sun on our faces, the wind whistling through our hair, and his laugher lifted in the wind as he would speed past me daring me to catch him bring smiles to my face even today.  imagesCAZIN6KW

I still crave the sun on my face and the wind whistling through my hair………..

Oh my, excuse me but I forgot I have an errand to run. I’ll get back with you shortly. Have a blessed day.

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~~~~~

“May the righteous be glad and rejoice before God; may they be happy and joyful.” Ps. 68:3

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Blessings to you. 🙂

Love them to life

imagesCATUPTTEWally was walking down the street when he encountered an old friend. He hadn’t seen his friend in many years and was happy to see him. After a happy greeting, a slap on the back, he told his friend he had become a Christian and invited him to church. His friend snarled, made fun, and laughed. Wally was confused. “You don’t believe in God?” he asked. “No!” his friend replied. “How can you believe in something you can’t see?” his friend asked rather sarcastically. Wally looked at his friend and thought, “Dear God give me Your words for I know I’m speaking to someone who does not have your Spirit within him.”

The Lord whispered in Wally’s ear, “Love him. He will not accept your answer for his heart is closed.” Wally wasn’t sure what the Lord meant to “love him.” His friend stood looking at him waiting for an answer. Wally reached out and placed his hand on his friends shoulder and smiled. “I know that whatever answer I give you won’t satisfy you but hey, I love ya’ anyway. How about we go get a burger?”

His friend was shocked because he was ready to dig in and debate anything Wally had to say in answer to his question. As the two strolled down the street to the local fast food Wally realized the Lord was right. Those who truly seek answers come from the heart not the head.

Wally and his friend ordered their food and spent the next hour catching up on the “good old days.” Wally thanked the Lord that his friend was still his friend and he had not made an enemy.

~~~~~

“In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in darkness and the darkness did not comprehend it.” Jn. 1:4-5

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Blessings to you. 🙂