Monthly Archives: September 2012

The Path

Dear Readers,

     You never know what direction God is going to take you in life.  He certainly changed mine…

 

          THE PATH- Journal Entry September 19, 2012  2:30A.M.

 

     I need to write two stories that were heavy on my mind, when I was awakened at 2A.M.. 

     I believe with all my heart that everything in our lives happens for a reason.  Nothing is random.  These two examples are keeping me awake…

     1.  Recently, only days ago, at my volunteer job at the hospital, I carried several of my blog stories in the pocket of my pink smock, which are all true experiences from my past, hoping to be able to use them as a witness.  Before I entered the front door of the hospital I looked up to the sky and prayed, "Lord, if there is any person in there that I can plant a seed on for You, show me, so I can share my journal with them about what You have done in my life over the years.  Please, show me!" 

     Then I went to work.  My job is to bring complimentary sundries, magazines, and books to all the patients as a courtesy of the hospital.  I passed from room to room and it was pretty much routine.  Then, I came to one patient who was quite ill.  I said my usual spiel, "Hi, my name is Claire…." and when I was finished the patient looked up at me and said almost pleadingly, "Do you have anything I can read about God?"

      "Let me check my cart!" I said and proceeded to go through all my donated reading material.  I had nothing.  Not even a daily bread or an in touch, or a bible, left on my wagon.  Finally it dawned on me, "Your stories in your pocket!"  I grabbed all of them and said to the patient as I handed over my world, "I write a Christian blog of all the experiences in my life since I became a born-again believer.  They are all true stories!  Would you like to read some of them?"

     "Yes, I would!" my patient said excitedly.  And so I left them, anticipating planting a seed for someone in desperate need of God’s help.

     All things happen for a reason.  God directed me to that patient, on that day, in that hour, in that room, with those particular narratives in my pocket.  There was no other reason for us to bump into each other.  Something I wrote and experienced in the past hopefully, will touch that patient ‘s heart and Jesus will be invited in.  I have to believe God used me.  After over 35 years of writing, I know this is a ministry for me, and a bunch of little seeds for others.  These encounters just don’t happen by accident.  There are just to many variables.

              ———————–

 

      2.  This second story keeping me awake, happened back in the early nineties.  Jobs were scarce, just like today.  My husband was out of work.  I was a real estate broker, but housing sales had collapsed and nothing was selling.  Absolutely nothing!  So, I grabbed whatever work I could find, and ended up driving school bus.  The hours also worked around my continued attempt at real estate sales.

     A year passed and housing sales got worse, jobs became even more scarce.  My hubby was still out of work.  We were desperate for income as my school bus job paid only $50 a day, and his unemployment was about to run out.  I prayed and prayed, "Please Lord, we can’t survive, please help me find a full-time job!"

     Then, one day I came home from the morning half of my school bus route, and my neighbor across the street was outside in his yard and I heard God’s voice nudge me to ask him if they were hiring at his company (WRTA) which was city bus driving.  The last thing I wanted in the world was to drive a city bus, but it was now critical.

     "Yes, they are hiring two people!" he shouted back to me.  "Go down right now and apply.  I will put in a good word for you.  There are over 200 applications there already, but I will pull yours out of the pile!"  I jumped in my car and went right to the city and applied, and was called that night to come in the next day for training.

     But, here’s the important part!  I almost failed the training period because I was such a timid driver that my teacher wasn’t going to recommend me for the job.  The big boss wasn’t sure, so another inspector took me out for an extra training day.  I was so nervous that when I turned a corner with my 40′ bus, I couldn’t make it, and I broke down in tears right there at the intersection.

     "I really need this job!" I told him as I cried.  "Please don’t fail me!" I sobbed harder, "Please don’t fail me!"  He proceeded to spend extra time with me and showed me several safety tips that no one else had ever taught me.  He really went the extra mile, but God already had a grip on his heart, and locked up that position for me.  When we returned to the bus barn, he went to the big boss and said, "Let her go, she’ll be fine!"  That was good enough for the manager, and I was officially hired. 

     I didn’t know whether to be elated or angry.  I would now have a great paying job, way out of my career field, working nights, weekends, and holidays for years.  I knew it was going to be tough and it was not what I was educated to do, but the Lord answered my prayers at a time when it was impossible to get a good job anywhere in the country.

     I went on in a few years, to get a promotion and become the first full-time lady dispatcher /inspector at a facility of over 100 male and female drivers.  I ended up retiring from that company, not exactly what I would have chosen for a career ending.

     Everything happens for a reason in our lives.  Every single thing!  God takes us all on different paths.  Paths we might never ever choose for ourselves, or even expect sometimes.  But, if they are from God, we can not fail.  Psalms 23:3a says, "He leads me in the paths of righteousness, For His name’s sake."  (NKJV)

 

                                   Love in Christ,  Claire xoxo

 

John 12:26+27, "Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be.  My Father will honor the one who serves me.  Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say?  ‘Father, save me from this hour?’  No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour."  (NIV)

Acts 2:28, "You have made known to me the paths of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence."  (NIV) 

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The Career- Part Two

Dear Readers,

     I hope you enjoy part two of "The Career."  Scroll down the page for part one.  Thanks for reading…

 

     The Career- part two    Journal Entry May 5, 1986

     "GET OUT!  THEY’RE DISHONEST!

     This time, I got angry.  After eight weeks of working at these two purchases, spending five or six hours a day on them, I blew up at my hubby and chose to ignore his warning from the Holy Spirit, as well.  I had pushed aside my own strong warning a couple weeks earlier.  My husband chose not to ignore it, but since I was determined to continue, he signed power of attorney over to me.  The feeling of success, and now greed had taken it’s toll.  I pushed towards closing and continued to pray for guidance, still convinced that the Lord had sent both these houses to me, especially the one on the east side in Ellicott, close to the planned location of the new space center.  Both houses looked investment safe and encouraging.  Closing dates were set and both lenders assured me all was going well. 

     Then, several days before the scheduled closings, I filled up with uncontrollable fear again.  I thought to myself, "What if these houses are wrong?  What if the Lord really doesn’t approve of some of the subtle little deceitful things I have had to do in order to finance them?  He won’t bless them as rentals if lies and deceit are a part of the purchase, like my hubby kept insisting!"  The devil had convinced me my husband was jealous of my new found success, and not that the Lord was warning me.  The fear persisted and wouldn’t go away.

     A couple days before closing time, when I could no longer take the fear, once again I turned to God for help.  Reluctantly, with all my pride and intellect fighting not to reach out to Him, I got on my knees and turned to Jesus in total release, "Lord, if these houses are wrong in any way and don’t glorify You, I beg You to stop them now, before I get into something that is not from You and won’t have Your blessing.  Even though every part of me cries out not to, I’m begging You to somehow stop them if they are wrong for me, or I am wrong in how I am going about this.  In Jesus’s name I pray, amen!" 

     AND HE DID!  The next day, within minutes of each other, the calls came in.  Hours before the closing on the Ellicott house, I got a call that the lender turned it down, not even for a good reason.  "A mistake was made in Denver.  They turned your loan down!  We’re going to resubmit it with your approval.  I know it will pass this time!  It was an error by some college kid," the broker went on and on and on.  I hung up stunned. 

     Minutes later, a call on the second house, "The underwriters have refused your loan.  We’ll be sending you a letter of explanation!" was all I was told on the second call.

     The excuses were irrelevant.  Both houses had been stopped cold for no apparent reason, and I knew in my heart that no matter what else I tried, they would not go through!  It was over!

     I collapsed on my livingroom floor in shock.  I couldn’t believe it.  Both purchases were failing, within minutes of each other, after working so hard, for so long.  The phone rang again as I lay there in disbelief.

     It was my husband making his usual daily call.  He wasn’t the least bit surprised when I told him about the calls.  He had given the houses totally to God since he received his own warning.  He hurt for me, but he also said he knew it was coming.

     Sometimes, more often than I want to admit, I am pig-headed and proud.  I didn’t give up there.  I continued to fight until the end of the month when both my contracts expired.  It still hurts deeply to think about it.  Satan got a grip on my mind and convinced me that, "I’m intelligent and successful!"  He also convinced me that God did not want me to succeed.  Humility had disappeared, and vanity had taken over.

     When it finally became obvious that maybe, just maybe, real estate investing was not my forte, and my savings started running out, and also in the same month my mate’s overtime got cut, I decided it was time to look for another career.  Feeling totally humbled, I again turned to God in prayer, "Please forgive me and help me find another job Lord!  I need to do my share.  I’ve always worked and brought in some income, but I don’t know what to do.  I can’t go back to daycare, and I have been out of the work world for so long that I’m not sure what I am qualified to do Father!  Please, please help me find a job, in Jesus’s name I pray, amen."

                         

                        Love in Christ,   Claire  xoxo

 

P.S.  A little update.  I did find a job soon after, in retail sales.  Not a glamorous career, but a start.  Also, CSOC was never built.  The space program was cut by the next administration.  That means the house on the east side in Ellicott, would have immediately dropped in value.

     Within a year or so after this venture, there was a huge lay off at TRW in Colorado Springs where my husband worked, and our family had to relocate back to New England where he secured a new position with AT&T, and where real estate sales were booming.  I went to school and got my sales and broker licenses, and for the next five years, until the market collapsed in the early 1990’s, I successfully sold houses for Century 21.  (This next part I mention humbly.)  Thanks to the Lord, I even got in the top sales club ($1,000,000 Club) when I closed on just over a million dollars in sales in one year at Century 21.

     Only the Lord knows what is ahead in our lives.  We do not!  God is good all the time!

                                      ————–

Proverbs 11:2, "When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom."  (NIV)

Proverbs 11:2, "When pride comes, then comes shame; But with the humble is wisdom."  (NKJV)

Proverbs 3:5+6, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight."  (NIV) 

 

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The Career

Dear Readers,

     A couple weeks ago I blogged, "The Whispering Voice."  I hope you enjoyed reading it.  With all humility this next story (a two-part blog) was another time in my life that I ignored the warnings from the Holy Spirit…

 

      THE CAREER,   Journal Entry May 5, 1986

 

     About six months ago I quit daycare after doing it for seven years.  I felt it was time for a career change.  I was burnt out from babysitting and excited about going into real estate investment, which I had been studying about for a year or so.  I just refinanced my home so the savings account could carry us for awhile.  My husband was working lots of overtime, so it seemed like as good a time as any.  Through lots of prayers, I was convinced this was what the Lord wanted for me.  I was really excited and certain I had His blessing to progress on my new career venture.

     First, I sought after decent transportation.  The old car had died and I needed to be able to run around and search for houses looking respectable, plus a newer car helps the image of a real estate investor.  The Lord quickly provided me with a good deal.  My 1984 Nissan Sentra four door sedan was purchased $1,000 under blue book and looked liked it was off the showroom floor.  Thirty-five MPG didn’t hurt either.

     I started house hunting for some great deals.  I searched the papers every day, called on many, went and viewed a bunch as well.  But, no luck.  Occasionally, I would pray when I didn’t know where else to turn.  Often times, while driving around looking, I would sit on top of a hill, parked in my car, and ask the Lord, "Where, where should I buy?  You tell me Lord!"  And then I would get the strong indication He was answering, "Here, east on the prairie!  I will show you where."  So I continued to search for houses, especially on the east side of Colorado Springs. 

     After a couple months I found two fantastic deals within a couple days of each other.  Both houses needed to be refinanced and both were 15 to 20 thousand dollars under appraisal.  One was in the Springs, and one was east on the prairie in Ellicott, a rapid growth area because of the proposed building of C.S.O.C. (Consolidated Space Operations Center).  I was certain the Ellicott house especially, was directly from God.  I moved forward on purchasing both houses.  I found a real estate attorney, and two good lending institutions, etc.  I did all the running around that is required of buying new homes, getting all the family information required, and so on and so on.  I was totally enjoying my new career and feeling very successful.  After seven years at home doing daycare, it felt great to be out in the world.  I was surrounded by professional people, getting invited out to lunch, taking regular trips to Denver, running contracts and other paperwork to title companies, and being very business oriented.  It felt wonderful to be using my intellect for a change.

     I was doing well.  Forty thousand dollars equity in two rental houses was considered excellent purchases.  All the necessary papers had been filled out on both houses, and I was praying for the Lord to put it all together and take control of both deals.  All of it was progressing beautifully.  I was feeling more successful than ever before in my life.  My husband was so proud of me that he was bragging to everyone how smart and attractive his new career wife was.  I really felt like the Lord was blessing my new venture.  I had complete control, and in a couple short years, at this rate of success, I would be sitting pretty financially.

     Then one morning, like a bomb dropped, the Holy Spirit came overpoweringly on me!  He filled my whole being so strongly that I couldn’t hear any other sounds around me.  I was alone at home, and crying uncontrollably.  I heard His voice loud and clear, "THIS IS DISHONEST.  MANY OF THE PAPERS YOU SIGNED ARE FULL OF LIES.  IT’S WRONG.  IT’S NOT WHAT I WANT!  IT’S OF THE WORLD!"

     It was so overwhelming that I couldn’t manage my tears or my fears.  I called my mate at work almost hysterical, "I’ve got to stop the purchase of these two houses!  The Lord keeps telling me they are not totally honest.  I’m going about them wrong.  It’s dishonest!  I have to get out of them, but I don’t know how at this point!"

     I was really upset.  My husband wasn’t sure how to react.  He, like me, could only see financial success in our future.  We’ve both always wanted and believed that real estate was an excellent way to achieve financial security.

      Needless to say, after a few days, I calmed down and continued to progress nicely towards the closing of both houses.  I stupidly chose to ignore this strong warning from the Lord over my feeling of success and power in the investment world.  It’s easy to do when you are surrounded with worldly, well educated, professional people.  My attorney, brokers, and lenders had assured me that all the techniques I was using were being capitalized on by everyone these days, "It’s OK, everyone does it after all!"  I was guaranteed.  A couple more weeks passed and as I progressed towards two closings, I ran around doing last minute errands.

      But again, out of nowhere, an overpowering warning came from the Holy Spirit.  Only this time it came on my hubby while he was at work, not on me.  He called me, "Hon, I want out of these two deals!  The Lord keeps telling me too, "GET OUT!  THEY ARE DISHONEST!"               End of part one.

 

                              Love in Christ,  Claire  xoxo 

 

 

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The Healings

Dear Readers,

     The Lord laid this message heavily on my heart this past Labor Day on my morning walk and prayer time.  And, He brought three specific past healings to my mind over and over that I believe, He wanted me to write about.  This was verified to me the next day when I attended "Tasc Force" (Woman’s prayer group) and unexpectedly, many women gave testimony to healings they have experienced.  This was confirmation to me to enter my holiday story for this week’s blog…

 

     THE HEALINGS  –  Journal Entry September 3, 2012

 

     The Lord is alive and well and active today, September 2012.  We have the same Holy Spirit that Jesus was filled with when He walked the earth over 2000 years ago.  He still performs miracles, including healing, for all kinds of needs.  It doesn’t matter what your religious affiliation is.  What really matters is that we continue to ask Him for healing.

     God reminded me again and again this day, of three specific healings He wanted me to write about.  I will write them in order of how they happened.  Forgive me if this story seems redundant to some of my faithful readers, but these are the ones the Lord wanted me to tell.  I will write them according to date starting from my own healing, to a friend’s healing, to my grandchild’s healing…

 

     First Healing, "The Miracle Corn,"  -January 1986  (Blog # 71-12-14-2011)

     After learning just how real Jesus Christ is today, I decided to test my new found faith.  So, I asked my Father in heaven to heal me.  I had a planter’s wart the size of a half dollar that was quite painful, on the bottom of my left foot.  I had it for years.  While lying in bed one night, I held my foot and prayed, "I command this corn to be healed and leave the bottom of my foot in the name of Jesus Christ.  Spirit of inheritance I also command you to leave and never return in Jesus’s name, amen."  (My dad also suffered from these.)  I went to bed that night and forgot about it.

     A couple weeks later, I remembered to check the ball of my foot, and I noticed the corn seemed smaller, about quarter sized.  "I wonder if this really works?" I thought to myself.  I laid hands on it again and repeated my prayer, "Continue to heal and go away corn in the name of Jesus!"  This time I also thanked God for giving me this authority.  Another week or two went by before I rechecked, and again I noticed the corn was smaller, now about nickel sized.  "Look, my corn is shrinking!"  I shouted to my family, "It’s working!  It really works!"  It took a month or so of constant praying and I also often felt a burning sensation, but it completely disappeared and only left a scar.  It has never returned and I haven’t gotten any other warts.

                           ———————-

 

     Second Healing, "John and Father DiOrio" – Summer of 1998

 

     Back in New England we had a priest who was giving the last rights and praying for dieing people all the time.  The problem is, many of them didn’t die, but recovered.  Soon, word spread and droves of people of all different denominations, started coming to him for healing prayer.  This humble man would just speak a word and people would get healed in Jesus’s name.  (Website-Utube-Father DiOrio)

     A dear friend of ours, named John decided to go to one of his healing services and just observe, so he sat way up in the balcony.  As Father D. walked amongst the people he stopped and looked up into the rafters and said, "Someone in the balcony is being healed of a deaf ear!"  John was amazed because he had a deaf ear since childhood, when he was accidentally hit in the head.  Sitting there he wondered if it was for him, but he still didn’t hear anything.  But, when John awoke the next morning, while sleeping on his good ear, he heard birds singing outside.  Now in his senior years, his hearing had been miraculously restored in his deaf ear.  John Harty spent the rest of his life changing his farm land into a shrine for Jesus.  (Website- Search John Harty, Barre, Mass.)

                ———————————–

 

     Third Healing, "Group Prayer" –  November and December 2011

 

     Most recently my granddaughter Melanie was healed of a total loss of hearing, when she whacked her head on the gym wall at school during a sports game.  When all the doctors gave her no hope of it returning, C.J. and I had hands laid on us by a large group of people at our church.  I cried so hard, I couldn’t pray.  But, they all did, and within several weeks her hearing was restored.  It was holiday time and my teen grandchild told the Lord in prayer, that all she wanted for Christmas was her hearing back.  You see, Melly’s true love is her music (piano), not her sports.  Since her miracle, she has turned her focus away from all contact sports, and towards music appreciation.

              ———————————- 

 

     I’m not sure how God wants me to finish this blog except to say, that He still heals today inspite of our intellects.  He heals when He wants to, not when we want Him to.  Maybe we should have more faith and trust in His Will, not ours.  Maybe, He just wants us to keep on asking Him for healing.

     All I know is that my mind wouldn’t rest until I wrote this all down.  I have done what I was told to do.  My blog is for planting the seed, but it’s up to Him to make it grow.

 

                             Love in Christ,  Claire  xoxo

 

     Acts 9:32-35, "As Peter traveled about the country, he went to visit the saints in Lydda.  There he found a man named Aeneas, a paralytic who had been bedridden for eight years.  "Aeneas," Peter said to him, "Jesus Christ heals you.  Get up and take care of your mat."  Immediately Aeneas got up.  All those who lived in Lydda and Sharon saw him and turned to the Lord."  (NIV)

     Acts 9:32-35, "Now it came to pass, as Peter went through all parts of the country, that he also came down to the saints who dwelt in Lyd’da.  There he found a certain man named Aeneas, who had been bedridden eight years and was paralyzed.  And Peter said to him, "Aeneas, Jesus the Christ heals you.  Arise and make your bed."  Then he arose immediately.  So all who dwelt at Lyd’da and Sharon saw him and turned to the Lord." (NKJV) 

 

 

 

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