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thread for middle age to older Christian women.

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  • robinlbe
    robinlbe Member Posts: 73
    edited April 2010
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    We, too, are tithers and always have been.  My parents taught me to tithe since I started receiving my very first allowance as a small child (a dime a week).  I faithfully put my penny in a tithing envelope each Sunday.  I grew up tithing and so did my husband.  When we married, we knew we would continue to tithe, support missionaries as well as other ministries.  Sometimes, I must admit when things are tight, it's real easy to look at the $ and think, "oh, if only....".  But then, I remember that we have what we have only because God allowed us to have it in the first place.  It was His to begin with, because I am His. 

    Once I remember having a discussion with my mom about this, and I remember saying, "but I'm the one who worked so hard for all of this money." And her retort was, "and who gave you the ability and the health to be able to do it?"

    There have been many weeks, months, years when it has been paycheck to paycheck...but I will brag on God and say, that like you, we've never had debt except for our mortgage, or if we had other things financed, it was a used car, or a house project, or making medical payments.  No credit card debt, though.  We live within our means.  We sacrifice - no new cars, we economize when we go on vacations, no cable TV (in fact, only one OLD tv in the house at all!!), same furniture in our house since we've lived here (24 years)......AND we've never been late on a payment.

    We've been faithful to God, and He has been faithful to us.  I don't see our tithing as an insurance plan, of course.  Things do happen.  We get sick.  Duh- I got breast cancer.  Cars break down.  Major repairs need to happen to the house.  BUT, God works things out somehow.  Either the tax refund comes at "just the right time", or the "three pay month" comes at just the right time, or we just happened to have just a tiny bit left over we were hoping to save.

    It does get discouraging at times, because it feels we never get ahead - but on the other hand, our needs are met. and some of our wants are met, too :)   No, I'll never have a nice, new car, but we do have a nice 2005 Sienna van, and because we waited, we got a used one and God even let us have a sunroof!!!  I feel so blessed Smile.  My kids all play musical instruments, and we've always been able to get good deals.  I don't think that's coincidence either.  And my kids all play at church, too....giving back to Him.

    To give you perspective, I just went back to work part-time in 2004.  If I weren't working, our kids would be eligible for reduced lunch at school, and we'd be eligible for all types of gov't programs.  Even though my husband has a college degree.....sigh.  Before this job, I gave flute and piano lessons out of my home in order to help out.....God literally dropped my current job in my lap.

    The phrase "God helps those who helps themselves" is actually a statement written by Ben Franklin.  I do believe that God wants us to be good stewards of what He gives us, and the Bible does say that He will bless those who give generously, and He also says to test Him in that area. 

    Well, now I'M the one who's preached the sermon....sorry, ladies..

    This is a subject very near and dear to my heart for a number of reasons....I'm passionate about it, and I feel it's important.  I think that if we are set apart for God, then if I set apart what is God's first, then He will help me appropriate (I don't think I spelled that right...sorry) what I need to do with the rest of my earnings -that He allowed me to receive - Budgeting, too, is a major key and factor.  We're not strict budgeters, but we know what we can and can not spend money on, and know what our limits are (and believe me, our limits are tight!!! )

    Blessings....robin

  • patoo
    patoo Member Posts: 5,243
    edited April 2010
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    Oh Robin, thanks for sharing that.  Tears to my eyes.  I wish I could say I've been as good a steward.  I have not.  I chose the path as a single parent (by choice through adoption) to give my boys 2 nice vacations each year, a new car every 3 years (leases), our own home, etc.  So I do have a lot of debt but the Lord has been faithful and I've been able to handle it.  I've been chipping away at it for 18 months though.  I look back at all the waste but, again, God was in that as well.  Through it all I've given much to others as well because I knew it was only a gift to me from Him who supplies all. 

    Thanks Robin, your testimony made me  feel the need now to be even more conscientious of what the Lord has entrusted me with.

    Barb, see what you started.  God can use us all.  He has used you to speak to me.

    Night my Sisters-in-Christ. 

  • barbe1958
    barbe1958 Member Posts: 7,605
    edited April 2010
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    Thank you ladies, that was very powerful words for thought.

  • kmccraw423
    kmccraw423 Member Posts: 885
    edited April 2010
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    What lovely testamonies.  You help me see the positive side of happenstances that I usually take to mean He's punishing me.  But after reading Robin and Patoo I see a much more positive side by believing these are not punishment at all - this is the Lord presenting lessons to be learned.  So you ladies are not preaching, you are here to help me in my journey toward returning to Heavenly Father.  We are all His tools!

  • barbe1958
    barbe1958 Member Posts: 7,605
    edited April 2010
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    I never thought of Him as punishing me, I just figured I didn't learn the lesson and had to re-do the "test"...

  • patoo
    patoo Member Posts: 5,243
    edited April 2010
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    Barbe - LOL - Yes, I also have to re-do my tests! 

  • lvtwoqlt
    lvtwoqlt Member Posts: 765
    edited April 2010
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    About money issues, 8 yrs ago my hubby lost his job and had to pick up low paying jobs for 4 yrs. His cousin provided us with wild game (venison) for our table, we accepted food from the church food pantry a couple of times. We managed with my income as the primary income to keep paying our mortgage and 2nd mortgage sometimes late but no more than 2 months late, lost our 98 Taurus with only $2,000 left to pay (bank refused to work with us), let several credit cards go to judgments - we felt it more important to keep the house paid rather than credit cards. Fast forward to today, my husband is in a job making twice what he was making 8 yrs ago, I went through several temporary cars (older cheap cars that we locally financed and when we got them paid off about every 18 months, traded up to a newer cars), and now am in a 2002 Focus in great shape and paid off and husband in a 1998 Crown Vic that is paid off, judgments are nearly paid off, mortgage and 2nd mortgage are now paid every month on time.

    I am preparing for another 'test'. I am now facing a layoff from my job I have held for 17 yrs but God took care of us 8 yrs ago when we depended on my income and now my hubby's income is more than I made. I am trusting on God to provide for my family as he did then. when you lay all your problems including finances in His huge hands and don't go back to pick them back up, things will work out in His time.

    Sheila

  • patoo
    patoo Member Posts: 5,243
    edited April 2010
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    Ladies, you are all part of my rock.  God is the foundation but I'm thrilled by the testimonies.  Thanks Sheila.

  • cakeisgreat
    cakeisgreat Member Posts: 188
    edited April 2010
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    Sheila--that is amazing to see how God worked things out for you and will continue to work them out!  It reminds me that God loves us even when bad things happen...like losing jobs, or having a hard time paying mortgages, or dealing with debt...or breast cancer!  and it's not anything we did but just stuff He uses to show us how AWESOME He is to fix everything in His time!

    Thanks everyone for sharing!  Your testimonies warmed my heart tonight!

  • barbe1958
    barbe1958 Member Posts: 7,605
    edited April 2010
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    I love that JO!!

  • scoobydoo
    scoobydoo Member Posts: 20
    edited April 2010
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    Hi Ladies.

    I would love to join this wonderful thread. My name is Anita and I am 42 years old, married to a wonderful man for 16 years and have a lovely teenage daughter. 

    I love the Lord and just want to say that without Him I could not have made it through BC.  I have just finished rads and currently under PT for very mild LE. My husband is currently unemployed but we are trusting in the Lord for a job. My husband is doing all he can in terms of applying and interviews, but we know Who holds things in His hands.

    Anita 

  • badger
    badger Member Posts: 24,938
    edited April 2010
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    Good morning ladies and thanks, I am going out for a walk prior to tx #3 today and this gives me something positive to think on and pray about.  I don't believe that God causes bad things like job losses or cancer, I believe that He gives us the tools we need to cope with life and the choice (free will) to decide what to do.  Compost happens, grow something good with it! {{hugs}}

  • barbe1958
    barbe1958 Member Posts: 7,605
    edited April 2010
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    I just saw this in someone's tag line:

    Don't worry about tomorrow, God's already there.

    Beautiful!

  • arnie2two
    arnie2two Member Posts: 374
    edited April 2010
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    Barbe...so true..

    Matthew 6:34 states;  Therefore do not be anxious for tomorrow; for tomorrow will take care of itself.  Each day has enough trouble of its own.  (NAS)

    I love living in today!  I loved everyones' testimonies...this is a wonderful thread to come to...

      Welcome!!!  You've found a great group of sistahs here...

    ((((((((((((((((((((((((((HUGS))))))))))))))))))))))))  janet

  • lbmt
    lbmt Member Posts: 49
    edited April 2010
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      What wonderful testimonies.  it reminds me of this saying i seen last year.

    When we are down to nothing, God is up to something.

    we are currently looking for a home church. so i have been praying about our tithing and offering and where i should send it. 

    i can not tell you how wonderful it is to have christian sisters, and bc sisters once again.

    love to all  laurie

  • lvtwoqlt
    lvtwoqlt Member Posts: 765
    edited April 2010
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    Jo, I have that battle every day, leave problems there then want to go back and try to deal with it myself Laughing.

    Sheila

  • barbe1958
    barbe1958 Member Posts: 7,605
    edited April 2010
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    And you have to know that God is up there shaking his head and having a good chuckle at our expense....Innocent

    Another saying: If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.

  • robinlbe
    robinlbe Member Posts: 73
    edited April 2010
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    That's great, Jo...thanks for sharing that...and no, you're NOT the only one who leaves something with the Lord, then goes back and grabs it.....Hey, ladies, this is not BC related, but would you pray for my oldest son?  He's about to turn 19 and in the final weeks of his freshman yr of college.  He's at a Christian college- in fact, it's my husband's and my alma mater.  (my mom went there for one year, too!).  He turned down a full-ride (several, actually) to attend there.  We ended up paying some, but that was okay, because we felt it was worth the sacrifice.  Well, he has made up his mind that he is NOT going back in the fall :( Even though he has reapplied to one of the turned-down-full-ride colleges, he hasn't exactly put everything into motion.  At this point, he has no classes planned for the fall.  He is involved in the Chorale (travelled to California with them in November!!) and the orchestra, even though he's not a music major....he enjoys both so much.  If he goes to the state college, he will give up his music.  We are against this move.

    His reasons are that the programs at the state college are better (but this has not been verified...this is just what he thinks).  I know that kids have to sometimes make their own mistakes, but this is such a big one.  And he is struggling with his relationship with the Lord anyway.  He really needs to be surrounded by growing, vibrant Christians and caring, loving, dedicated professors whose 1st concern is the kids' spiritual lives.

    Again, I know this is totally unrelated to BC, but this has just really added to my stress levels...AND I'm in the midst of finding out what my job placement will be for next fall.  I found out four weeks before school started that my tchg position had been elminated....I was called today asking if I'd consider going full-time to teach 5th grade music (which I would have LOVED!!!!!!).  But this is not the time for me to go to full-time work yet.  I am still homeschooling my other two children, and THEY are much more important than other children or the $.  Someone who hasnt' always treated me kindly ended up with that position  :(  So now, I'm waiting on finding out where I will end up in the fall.....I work 2 days + 40 minutes (goofy, I know!).....

    Thanks so much, my dear Christian sisters....I already feel so close to you already....I am so blessed by each one of you and am grateful for this thread.  Please know you are continually in my thoughts and prayers....

    blessings...robin

  • arnie2two
    arnie2two Member Posts: 374
    edited April 2010
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    Hey robin... I totally understand...  I rely on HIm  and remind Him of His promise to me....

    Proverbs 22:6  "Train up a chld in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it.  (NSV)

    Bless your heart,  ((((((((((hugs))))))))) janet

  • robinlbe
    robinlbe Member Posts: 73
    edited April 2010
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    That's one of the Bible verses I am claiming for our son.....Train up a child....and in fact, that is on a plaque in his room.  It's been there since he was a little guy....amazing he let it stay there, huh?!?!?  

    Thanks for agreeing with me in prayer and for your encouragement....

    you all are THE best....

    blessings..robin

  • badger
    badger Member Posts: 24,938
    edited April 2010
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    Good morning all and Robin I'm sending up a special prayer for you and your family! 

    I was raised in a good Christian household but went a little wild when I went to college.  Took a few years but I came back to rights.  My mom told me how worried she had been, she had her whole prayer circle praying for me all that time. 

    It's a good thing to ask for help!  There's a bunch of people praying me through breast cancer (mom activated the prayer chain lol), and this group I know will pray for you and your son, to help your family through these growing pains.  {{hugs}}

  • arnie2two
    arnie2two Member Posts: 374
    edited April 2010
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    (((((((((((((((((((groundhog))))))))))))))

    (((((((((((robin)))))))))))))  I remember moving out on my own and "doing my own thing"...  My sweet mother, (gone to be with the LORD 20 years ago April 7th) would just love me.  We worked at the same hospital and she knew what parties, etc. I was going to.  She just loved me and was such an awesome example just by the way she lived.  I remember coming back to her to tell her I had started attending a new church and was back on track.  She replied, "Honey, I never doubted it, I claimed the promise, Prov. 22:6)  My mom none the less spent many times on her knees for me and I am soooooo looking forward to seeing her again!!!! 

    JO...Too funny!!!!  See, we might disagree on some biblical "principles" but we share the same spirit!  Love you sistah!

    Hugs to all my christian sistahs...may you have a blessed day...

    janet

  • kmccraw423
    kmccraw423 Member Posts: 885
    edited April 2010
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    Groundhog ... I am forever place my woes at God's door only to run back and pick them up again.  In my heart of hearts, He's not fixing it soon enough or the way I wanted it fixed!  I got a lot of nerve!  Now I think I know what's best - as Barbe said, the Big Guy is probably on Heaven's floor laughing.  I think I need to remember to keep my eyes on the prize!

  • illinoislady
    illinoislady Member Posts: 34,532
    edited April 2010
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    For IBMP  I think the save is way, way down at the end of the page you were on to set your avatar picture.  I had a few problems with this until I scrolled almost to the end of the page.  Keep trying...it will work.

    Hi to all....have been running my head off and not getting on very much lately.  Some really beautiful stories/testimonies on here.

    I too feel that everything we go through has a specific purpose and that we all need to try and elevate our learning and experiences.  I simply term it for my own reference as growing my soul.  Whatever I can do that will glorify my soul also glories my Creator.  As to having everything go well....that's wonderful when it does, but we don't learn as much.  It is when things are a bit un-certain and the road has a few rocks in the path that we grow.  I was always learning these lessons, but did not have a lot of the understanding for it until the last few years.  Trust and faith....they are big things to me now and so much more then the miss-understood words of a few years back.

    Hope you all have a wonderful day. 

    Hugs, Jackie

  • coonie
    coonie Member Posts: 2,582
    edited April 2010
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    Jo!!!!!!! Bless your heart!!!

    I'm starting those prayers right now!!!!!

    ((((((((((((((((((((((((((((Jo))))))))))))))))))))))))

  • illinoislady
    illinoislady Member Posts: 34,532
    edited April 2010
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    Warm healing hugs and prayers Jo.

    Jackie

  • C130sunshine
    C130sunshine Member Posts: 47
    edited April 2010
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    Jo...I am so sorry you are having to go through this.  Yes, You defiantly have my payers.  Keep us informed. 

    {{{{{{{{BIG HUGS}}}}}}}}

  • robinlbe
    robinlbe Member Posts: 73
    edited April 2010
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    Jo, lifting you to the Father above.....

    (and thanks, everyone, for your words of encouragement and comfort about my son....today is his 19th birthday.  He's really a great kid, uh...young man - I guess ......he just is stubborn and has a mind of his own.  Which has always been a really good thing...he's never been easily swayed, or let other's opinions phase him, or let peer pressure get to him.....However, he now won't listen to reason, either.  AND he is wanting to totally understand the mind of God- which obviously none of us can do, if we could, we'd be God and would have no need of Him.....Benjamin is trying to analyze too many of God's actions - especially those in the Old Testament. He's struggling with the actions of God that he feels are cruel.  He has no problem with Jesus...and yet, he understands the Triune God.....sigh.  Anyway, he's been talking to one of the religion profs at his college, who is also in charge of their chapels.  Of course, there are no answers for Benjamin's questions....he is going to have to just go on faith and trust.  Sometimes he's too smart for his own good!!      And he STILL thinks this other -state college- is a better choice for him next year, although he's never really talked to anyone about their programs....it's just something he's "gotten in his head".....sigh.)

    This momma is spending time on her knees, as is MY momma :)

    And you know what?  Sometimes I honestly think it's harder for "church" kids to get their own faith sometimes.....my kids will be/are 4th generation Christians/church goers.  That's such a blessing, but it's also hard.

    I am so grateful to have this forum to share Christ, His love, our concerns, and His faithfulness...

    Even though I don't know all of you yet, you are all in my thoughts and prayers....blessings..robin

  • robinlbe
    robinlbe Member Posts: 73
    edited April 2010
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    I dont' know that we protected them too much is the problem....my daughter (age 17, but wiser than most 30 and 40 y.olds) and I talk about this frequently.  It's just that by growing up with it your whole life, you get so accustomed to hearing the Gospel,knowing the right way to act, going to church, etc......that yes, you do invite Jesus into your heart - SINCERELY - at a young age, and you do love the Lord.....however, it can be hard to own your own relationship.  To get to that point where it's YOUR relationship and not a branch of your parents'.  Do you know what I mean?  To know what YOU really believe.....

    My kids know the Bible inside/outside/upside down/backwards.....they asked Jesus into their hearts at an early age, but when several things happened in their lives (at about age 12) they began questioning.  We did our very best to help them understand that we couldn't understand, but we had to keep believing, trusting, having faith, etc.. 

    I, too, am glad we kept our kids in church and are STILL keeping them in church.  There's never a question as to where we are on Sunday mornings and Sunday nights.  As I heard a preacher once say, if you keep your kids in church, they'll make lousy sinners :)

  • robinlbe
    robinlbe Member Posts: 73
    edited April 2010
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    And actually, Jo, I was the same way.....I can't even remember when I became a Christian.....but I do know that I rededicated my life to the Lord when I was in college.....and I'm 50 now. 

    I know you have a LOT on your mind...I will be praying for extra peace and comfort during these days (as well as a healthy body!!!)....blessings to you and your family...robin