Parsha Ponderings….

Posted by on May 24, 2019 in All Posts, Journey thru Garden, Pams Ponderings | 2 comments

The Haftarah this week is Jeremiah 32:6-27. For those of you just beginning this walk, the Haftarah refers to an additional portion from the Nevi’im (Prophets) read after the weekly Torah portion. There are 3 parts that are read by believers in Yeshua (Jesus) on Sabbath, the Torah, the Haftarah and the Renewed Covenant (NT). As I read thru the Parsha (weekly Scripture portion) for this week, Jeremiah really spoke to me and I’d like to share few thoughts concerning something it said.

Jeremiah is probably one of my favorite books … because it speaks to me personally. Not to say that the rest of the bible doesn’t, it’s just that Jeremiah spoke to me in a time in my life when I really needed to learn a few things. One of them was ‘who am I’? The question loomed in my life as I turned 30 because my heart cried out that there just HAD to be more than what I was finding at my local Catholic church and what I had been taught. Surely there had to be more! And little did I know that by asking that question with a pure and sincere heart, that he would set people and circumstances in front of me to lead me into more revelation of who he was! It set my foot on a path, that while  filled with potholes and ruts, became a well-traveled friendly road.

As my life changed from a nominal Christian to a full-fledged wannaknowitallrightnow newly ‘saved’ believer (long story) I read the bible all the way through for the first time ever. The impact of reading those words for myself still ring in my ears to this day. Jeremiah answered so many questions that the New Testament produced in my life. One of those major questions was ‘who was Israel’ and ‘why did it matter’? Well, after reading the book in context – from the beginning to the end – one realizes that the entire book is about Israel! And how much the Holy One of Israel, loved Israel. After realizing that ‘it’s not all about me but Israel’, then you can put a few other scriptures in context – such as Romans 9:3-5, Ephesians 2:12, John 4:22, Jeremiah 31:3, Jeremiah 31:9, Isaiah 46:14, John 14:21, Isaiah 2:3 and so many more! And Jeremiah ties it all together in my humble opinion:

“Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah” (Jeremiah 31:31).

Think on that … a NEW COVENANT .. but only with the house of Israel AND the house of Judah. My initial question back in the 80’s was….‘who is he talking about’? Well, after careful study I learned that there were 2 houses, one in the north and one in the south (kinda sounds like the USA in the beginning doesn’t it?) which were divided and had some real family feuds going on. The northern house was captured first, scattered and assimilated among the nations (read IKings) yet the house of Judah remained intact even though they too were captured and sent to Babylon. However, even during Yeshua’s time, it was well-known that there were still 12 tribes! Everything Yeshua accomplished was to reunite the House of Israel as one new man, and to teach mankind how to walk in his Father’s laws.

He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him” (John 14:21).

So to bring it all together and to keep this short, let’s go back to verse 17 ‘Ah, Lord God! It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you.  If we are believers in the Holy One of Israel YHWH (God, Father, Elohim), then we must also believe that it was he that made the entire cosmos…..nothing is too hard for him. Then….he confirms it himself:

26 The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: 27 “Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is anything too hard for me?

So, today, as you go through the details of living life, moaning and groaning or smiling and full of joy, remember, the creator of your life is there for you, nothing is too hard for him. Trust in that and keep going forward!

~Pam~

 

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Day by Day…

Posted by on May 14, 2019 in All Posts, Journey thru Garden, Pams Ponderings | 3 comments

Taking things day by day is always an excellent idea. Have you tried it lately? It’s not as easy as some might think however. ‘Stuff‘ gets in the way. Stuff – like fixating on the past, wondering how things could have gone differently, all the would’ve, could’ve, should’ves. That ‘stuff’ gets in your thinking cap and rattles your brain until it’s like mush and today … well, today is gone and now it’s tomorrow! So much for taking things one day at a time!

So let’s try again. Day 2. Since we weren’ able to have any success on Day 1 allowing just that day’s issues to be addressed, let’s just try again. Day 2. Actually, it’s a good thing it’s Day 2 as we can now remember that we missed it on Day 1! That may sound a bit convoluted, but most of us will go through a whole lot more ‘Days’ of starting over than we do remembering to dedicate one day to one day. And ‘remembering’ is an excellent way to get in the groove to begin a new adventure.

So, here we are – Day 3.

Smile….it’s all about the journey!

1 Chronicles 16:23  ~ Make songs to the Lord, all the earth; give the good news of his salvation day by day.

Psalms 37:18 ~ The Lord watches over the innocent day by day and they possess a permanent inheritance.

Psalms 68:19 ~ Blessed be the Lord: day by day doth he load us with good, the God who is our salvation. Selah.

Luke 9:23 ~ And He said to all, “If any one is desirous of following me, let him ignore self and take up his cross day by day, and so be my follower.

2 Corinthians 4:16 ~ For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.

 

 

 

 

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Spring has sprung

Posted by on Apr 26, 2019 in All Posts, Our Family, Pams Ponderings | 7 comments

Spring has sprung

The cycles of time have returned to the rebirth of spring here in central Missouri and it is a welcome sight to be sure! No one that I am aware of would push her arrival off any longer than necessary – certainly not I. I love hearing the birds announcing her arrival and beginning new life of their own. I love seeing the tiny signs of life spring up in the form of daffodils, tulips and yes, dandelions. I love being able to sit on the porch and breathe deeply of the warm air filtering in through the slightly cool breezes. I love everything there is about this time of the year….it is rejuvenating to say the least.

This spring is a bit different. My house is empty. Not only of furniture, which has all been sold in the anticipation of the closing of my house, but of my husband’s presence. It is rare, I think, that anyone appreciates someone as much as they should …. until they are no longer there. I think there is a song about that – if not, there should be. Sitting on the deck in the morning without that fresh cup of coffee that Jim just made for me, smiling that quirky smile of his and being so energetic way too early in the morning….well, makes me appreciate the little things he did. That fresh cup of coffee wasn’t just ‘coffee’ either, it had a dash of MCT oil in it, a splash of cream, a tiny bit of stevia and then it was all whirled up in my nutrabullet. And he figured all that out himself by just watching me make it. Simple things, but oh so memorable. Then of course there are the ‘bigger’ things that he did that I never noticed. Like keeping the cars cleaned, changing the oil and all the other stuff that goes along with owning a car, a house, a yard….and bills. All those little things that now need a new caretaker. Guess that’s me.

The Hospice team in our area that helped me when Jim was ‘transitioning to a higher pay grade’ sponsored a memorial of life dinner this past week. It was definitely bittersweet. All 8 of our granddaughters came, including my daughter in law Cheryl and my parents. The love they showed by just being there helped me know that their love is deeply rooted in family…which is what matters first and foremost.  It was heartbreaking to see those two empty chairs where our sons would have sat….our youngest, Jason already on the other side with Jim, and my oldest, Jim (III) spending time in a prison system on trumped up charges. It was hard to look at those two empty chairs as we celebrated their dad’s life without them present. But the tight hugs and smiles from our ‘girls’ got us all through the night.

To date, it has been 4 months since my husband, Jim, passed, 19 months since Jason passed, and 43 months since our oldest Jim has walked through our door. I miss my ‘boys’ deeply, yet I ‘feel’ their presence. Sometimes, yes, in the very smallest of ways – and sometimes in great big ways. The big ways make me go ‘wow’ … the small ways … well, they make the eyes water a bit. No matter which hits me however, my 4 legged companion, Serena, seems to sense it and comes and lays her big ole head on my lap, looking up at me with those comforting big brown eyes. And then my heart can untwist, my stomach unknot and it’s a bit easier to breathe. Without family and friends, and yes, Serena, it would be hard to keep going forward. But it would be totally impossible without my ‘hope in God’.

And then my mind wanders to all those that are hurting and crying out and swamped in tears….so many around the world that have no hope, no family, no friends, no Serena. It is definitely not a place anyone would choose to find oneself in, but unfortunately, it is a place that many end up lost in. But it is also a place where you don’t have to stay either. You can of course, if you choose to do so…it is a place filled with many souls, some that have been there for years and have lost all hope. However, with even the tiniest whisper of hope one can crawl out of that black hole and see the sunlight once again. With the littlest bit of effort, one can again hear the warble of birds singing, breathe in the freshness of a spring breeze and delight in the sweetness of friends and family again. Yes, just the tiniest bit of effort will be rewarded with a tiny bit more, and then again, and then again, until all of the sudden, you find yourself standing up  and looking forward to the day.

Hope. Hope in the One who has all of the cosmos in His control. Hope in the Creator of the cosmos, the Creator of the universe, the Creator of you. Hope….because YOU matter to Him. Now, for those of you still lost in hopelessness….look up, He’s waiting.

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Sign the Petition

Posted by on Apr 16, 2019 in All Posts, Family Affair, Journey thru Garden, Our Family | 0 comments

Many of you know the situations we have found ourselves in over the past years. The trials and tribulations have been, at times, seemingly insurmountable, but somehow we keep pushing through … and it is only by the grace of the Almighty who holds us tightly and friends and family who continue to support and lift us up with encouragement and prayers. At times, I, myself, thought I could endure no more. It is amazing how many tears the human body can produce, the depths of the heart wrenching sobs that seep through the layers of walls we have built for ourselves and the inability to think or make rational decisions when once we felt so capable of almost anything. I am reduced to rubble. Each day is like a day lived before, remember that old Groundhog Day movie? Yep, that’s what it’s like.  Over and over and over…no end in sight.

With 3 of the 4 people in my immediate family gone, left alone, widowed, it seems useless to go on. Losing a child who was destined for great things, losing a husband months later and dealing with the loss of my oldest due to an insane system of ‘justice’ … yes, my heart sometimes fails me. But even as tears again sneak out, even as my heart feels ripped and torn to shreds, I know that there is still beauty, there is still hope. HOPE. Hope springs eternal and His word is true, there is more to this life than this existence. A good friend of mine told me when I lost both my son Jason, and my husband Jim that ‘God is outside of time; we live in this time realm. But one day, when ALL time is reconciled, we will see our loved ones face to face’. Knowing that helps ease the pain of their missing presence. While I will, once again, see my beloved Jason and hubby, there is still much that can be accomplished for my oldest son, Jim.

The loss of his presence in my life has been devastating, not just to me, but to his wife Cheryl and his six precious daughters. So, as a family we are rising up and saying ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. We pray that you will consider joining us as we petition the President of the United States to grant him an early release. While many will scoff and continue to revel in their self-righteousness and level out accusations, just as many of you have witnessed the good fruit that has sprung from our tree. We implore all of you to join us in this endeavor. Now is not the time to be silent.

It has been 3 1/2 years now and we feel the time has come to petition our President to consider Jim’s release. In order to accomplish this and for our efforts to reach the Oval Office, we need your help! Everyone in your family over the age of 13 will be able to take part in this endeavor.

If you are willing to stand up and help a brother in the body, a family in need, please consider signing up for the updates on how all this will come about. Just sign up below and we’ll send you out the updates as things become finalized. If you know of anyone that would like to help our family – please share this message!

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May the Daughters Arise!

Posted by on Apr 2, 2019 in All About Women, All Posts | 2 comments

The Father has always used His daughters and He will continue to. If you are a woman and other women and men in leadership are telling you that you can’t speak or use the gifts He has given you, they are false Shepherds and are only doing harm to the Body. If they are telling you that only men have an inheritance with Adonai, review these passages.

Furthermore, how could Phillip’s daughters prophesy with their mouths shut?

“9Now this man had four virgin daughters who were prophetesses” ( Acts 21:9, NASB).

Job is left with 7 sons and 3 daughters. The sons aren’t even named but his daughters are and their names have great meaning, and they were given an inheritance with the sons.

“He had seven sons and three daughters. 14He named the first Jemimah, and the second Keziah, and the third Keren-happuch. 15In all the land no women were found so fair as Job’s daughters; and their father gave them inheritance among their brothers. 16After this, Job lived 140 years, and saw his sons and his grandsons, four generations. 17And Job died, an old man and full of days.”
Job 42:13-17, NASB.

Here’s an excerpt from Doctrines of Demons Part # 1.

The first woman evangelist in the gospel of John was the woman at the well. She, unlike Nicodemus, took that living water and ran to tell everyone in her town. The scripture says:
And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on Him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.
–John 4:39.

The first person Messiah showed himself to after the resurrection was a woman.

I hear ministers say that if women were supposed to teach, why didn’t Yeshua have any women among the twelve disciples? Let’s look at scripture more carefully:

And it came to pass afterward, that he went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God: and the twelve [were] with him, and certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils, And Joanna the wife of Chuza Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others, which ministered unto Him of their substance.
–Luke 8:1-3, KJV)

Sounds to me like He had some women on the team.
There is one woman in the Newer Testament who is even given the title “disciple” in scripture:

Now there was at Joppa a certain disciple named Tabitha, which by interpretation is called Dorcas: this woman was full of good works and alms deeds which she did.
–Acts 9:36, KJV

Additionally, not only will you find a disciple, but an apostle named Junia:

Greet Andronicus and Junia, my fellow Jews who have been in prison with me. They are outstanding among the apostles, and they were in Christ before I was.
–Romans 16:7.

We see Deborah, a judge and prophetess.

Do not believe the lies of the enemy. The Father has poured out His Spirit upon all flesh!

““It will come about after this That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; And your sons and daughters will prophesy, Your old men will dream dreams, Your young men will see visions.

29“Even on the male and female servants I will pour out My Spirit in those days” ( Joel 2:28-29).

 

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This was written by good friend Bonnie Manning – find more about this subject at Grace In Torah

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Nice surprise

Posted by on Mar 22, 2019 in All Posts, Journey thru Garden, Pams Ponderings | 1 comment

While I was digging into some briefcases of my late husband’s looking for last year’s tax return….oh figuring things out is SO difficult, I ran into a couple of items that lifted my spirits and gave me the encouragement to keep going forward. Wanted to share it with you….these are from 1992, the year I was blessed to go to Israel for the first of several trips. Can not believe it has been that long!

The local newspaper in St. Charles, Missouri came out to ‘interview’ me and ask all kind of questions on why I was ‘building bridges’ –

 

And this was my first try at a ‘newsletter’ …. it was on a dot matrix printer … so many of you will know how tedious and how old this really is! My! We’ve come a LOOOONG way! Thank you mom for keeping ‘all my stuff’!

 

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Esther and me…

Posted by on Mar 22, 2019 in All Posts, Feast Days, Journey thru Garden, Purim | 0 comments

Esther and me (excuse me, Esther and I). Could there be a similar storyline in our lives? Not sure…but something tells me we have a lot in common.

Esther’s beloved land of Israel is not where she found herself ‘for such a time as this’. The land of Persia was a fur piece from her brethern which hailed from Jersualem!  She found herself without her family, under the care of another and in the midst of a precarious situation! I, too, find myself a fur piece from my original homeland, removed from my loved ones and also in precarious situations.  Well, maybe not quite as far from my homeland as Esther, but far enough I guess. But we definitely share the loss of loved ones and the precarious situations, that’s for sure. And my destination for over 30 years … well, that is the same as our beloved Queen – Jerusalem. So in heart, we are on the same page.

Then of course we have the devoted uncle – Moredechai. When Esther (her true name being Hadassah) took her in after the loss of her parents, he loved her as if she were his own daughter. Apparently she grew up into a stunningly beautiful woman and her beauty did not diminish her admiration and respect for her uncle. In fact, she admired him so much and respected his advise, that she hid her Jewish identity during a very precarious situation  … how she did that ... well, that’s a condumdrun to me. After all, you would think the King would WANT to know who she was and where she came from, at the very least to consider her for Queen of all Persia. I don’t really have an ‘uncle Mordechai’ … but I have had many placed in my life that have given me wise advise and loved me dearly. And, truth be told, sometimes, I don’t know who I am – so my identity is hidden as well many times.

So moving on to the King. Who was this guy…..seriously? A drunk? A blowhard? How did he even get to the throne with his crazy antics? Ahhh…but that is all OUR perspective. There is so much more beneath the curtain of King Xerxes life! Actually, I find him quite brilliant. After all, how DOES one hold together all 127 recently conquered provinces? Well….of course! Throw a big party and impress them with everything you got! Show off your massive military prowess, give them a hint of all that “Persia” offers and then throw in a bit of feminity so that they can identify with Mother Persia too! Although she had a different plan of action. So there was a plan to his madness. Brilliant to say the least. As for myself….I can’t really think of anyone that would represent a ‘king’ in my life….unless it would be trying to figure out the local government’s crazy ways of dealing with everything…although I wouldn’t exactly call it brilliant. Or could he even represent, in some way, the King over all of us? Here we are trying to figure out the whats and wherefores of all our precarious situations, and low and behold, He has a plan! That is something to ponder.

And that leaves us with Haman….mmmmmmmmmmm. A person so ambitious, so full of himself, so out to conquer anything that gets in his way he will do whatever and to whomever it takes to win! Ah, but those are the ones that are struck down right before the taste of victory slides down their greedy gullet . I think we can all relate to having a Haman in our lives, can’t we? I could name a few hundred if given the opportunity…and that wouldn’t cover them all.

So, in the end, what do we have? A lot of people making a lot of plans. Hadassah (Esther), making plans that will endear her to the King (plan maker extreme), Mordecha, making plans keep things on track, the King making plans to outwit and conquer and of course Haman, making plans to fulfil all his worldly desires.  If taken to heart, maybe we all have a bit of each of these characters living within us. We all have plans. We have a plan like Esther, we have plans like Mordechai, the King and yes, even Haman. These ‘characters’ are a part of our own fleshly desires….we can either be lifted up like Hadassah (Esther) was or lifted high like Haman. The choice, my friends, is ours.

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Times and seasons….

Posted by on Feb 22, 2019 in All Posts, In the Garden & Round the House, Journey thru Garden, Purim, Purim | 0 comments

The times and the seasons, yes they do change, right on schedule. Well, maybe not our schedule, but there is a schedule. After the cold winter months where the air is frigid and silence abounds and all seems a wasteland of emptiness, a tiny blade of grass sprouts forth, or a daffodil dares to rise above the barren soil. Our attention is immediately focused on the tiny brave soul emerging from the frozen tundra and we are transfixed with wonder. The soul within us begins to be renewed with the hope of ‘spring eternal’.

Our journey though life is much like the seasons of the year as well. Each season of our life brings its own death and rebirth, emptiness and abundance, tears of sorrow and tears of joy. It is a journey … a journey of living life. Loved ones leave this time realm and new souls enter into our circle of influence, knowledge grows, and it decreases….but life goes on.

As we witness the life springing forth at our feet during this end of this winter season, we place our hope and our trust in the One that brings forth all life at His timing. And for such a time as this, during this Hebraic Leap Year of Adar, we ponder on all things that contain the breath of life. The mysterious and miraculous renewal of life!

This is the Hebrew month called ADAR and it has a very powerful message to convey – one of abundance and joy and renewal! This is the year when there are two Adar’s placed into the Hebrew calendar so that it coincides with the the Gregorian calendar….but that is where the simplicity stops! During this month we can anticipate an abundance joy to be just around the corner, as this month is said to be ‘pregnant‘ and about to give birth! So, let’s just take that at face value..if this is the month of abundance, of expectancy, of joy – and Adar II  is the fulfillment of that abundance……what are you waiting for? Embrace the expectancy, look forward to the birth of something new! The redemption (Passover) is approaching and our hearts are in need of exuberant joy ~ for such a time as this!

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Just a little something … to lift you up

Posted by on Feb 15, 2019 in All Posts, Family Affair, Our Family, Pams Ponderings | 0 comments

Just a little something … to lift you up

This week was an especially hard one for me. It began with a week of feeling as if I were almost drowning in tears of grief and loosing the ability to breathe deeply (they tell me it’s asthma but I don’t agree). But, yesterday that last straw broke the camel’s back and I awoke to gasping, unable to breathe; I sank to my knees while grabbing the nebulizer and was ready to truly ‘be free’ imploring Abba to bring me home to join my husband and son.

I know, I know, that sounds horrid doesn’t it – a weak willed woman ready to give up, looking for escape. And they call me ‘strong’! But I bet some of you have felt that way at one time or another. The trauma of losing those close to you, the ones you rely on and you don’t even know how much until they are not there to pick up the slack, can sometimes just be overwhelming. And it was. On top of all the grief and trauma, not being able to breathe will cut you to the core of your being! Anyway – today I am much better and breathing … well, due to a little medical help. As I scrolled through the numerous messages, trying to sort some things out, I saw my son, Jim’s, weekly Sabbath message. So after hitting the link, the welcome video popped up and I almost dismissed it as I’ve seen it before….but this time I just let it run….

There are some things that bring you down, and there are others that lift you up. This is one of those lifters of the head!

My daughter (in-law), Cheryl, is probably the most underrated ‘teachers‘ in her own right. She is a teacher of how to walk gracefully during tumultuous times. She is a teacher in how to raise 6 girls while your husband has been taken away. She is a teacher to many who seek out her wisdom in various circumstances and situations – from counseling, to leading bible study, to whatever life has to throw at her…..and while we both know that there are those ‘down’ times, she walks her faith out … and I mean WALKS.

Just so everyone knows, I love this girl as if I had bore her myself, and I remember how my husband always said she was the daughter he never had. She has stood by our son through some unimaginable trials and tribulations – many that will never be fully known. She has braved the test and is still standing, and while she may be a little broken at times, she has never quit. Cause my son tells me that Staley’s don’t quit.

Dad and I love you dearly Cheryl, and as always, we stand by your side.

SO, here is what I want to share with you, so that if you are having difficulty raising your head to the heavens today and basking in His Light……maybe this will encourage you as it has me.

Staley Family Ministries

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Erev Shabbat Ponderings

Posted by on Feb 1, 2019 in All Posts, Journey thru Garden, Pams Ponderings | 5 comments

Erev Shabbat Ponderings

Erev Shabbat ~ eve of Shabbat ~ and as I anticipate the quiet solitude that Shabbat brings, I wonder lazily what the Father has in store for my journey. There are many things that have transpired in the last few years, none of them were even a blip on my radar! But here we are and it is what it is. This afternoon has been a contemplative one and as the realm of possibilities swarm above me like a giant cartoon balloon, I ponder on each idea, opportunity, direction. Which one Father which one?

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight ~
Proverbs 3:5-6

So, as the rays of the distant sun slowly slip beyond the horizon and the bitter cold attacks any slush that might have been able to form during the daylight hours, I’ll slip under a warm comforter and meditate on the word of my Father…for He holds my future in His Hand. Thank goodness!!

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