A Good Day

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
~ 2 Corinthians 12:9 ~

I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.
~ Philippians 4:13 ~

Hello friends. (smile) Today is a good day to let the grace of God sustain us through anything.

Today is a good day to rejoice that we made it to Friday.

Today is a good day to remember I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.

Today is a good day to walk by faith that ______________(fill in the blank)

Blessings as we have a good day by faith. Praise The Lord. (smile)

Keep The Faith

At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.”
~ Albert Schweitzer ~

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
~ 2 Corinthians 12:9 ~

Hello friends. (smile) TGIF!

Blessings as we keep the faith that the grace of God will sustain us today.

Blessings as we keep the faith that we’re loved.

Blessings as we keep the faith that we’re fearfully and wonderfully made.

Blessings as we keep the faith that we truly are blessed and highly favored.

Blessings as we keep the faith, to enjoy our day, because His grace is sufficient. (smile)

Roll With It Wednesday

The hardest arithmetic to master is that which enables us to count our blessings.
~ Eric Hoffer ~

I can do all things through Christ which strengthen me.
~ Philippians 4:13 ~

Hello friends. (smile) My message is short today.

Roll with it and say I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.

Roll with it because it is, what it is.

Roll with it and keep the faith.

Roll with it and remember the blessings God provides.

Have a blessed day!

Count It All Joy When…

This post was originally published on 19 October 2014 and updated on 13 November 2018.

Appreciate the Unexpected. ~ Anonymous ~

And we know that all things together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
~ Romans 8:28 ~

My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
~ James 1:2-3 ~

Hello friends. (smile) It’s a beautiful thing when The Lord gives understanding, to us, through His Word. It’s a beautiful thing to understand the power of specific prayers and to count it all joy.

I’ll be the first to admit, once upon a time, I struggled in my Christian walk. I struggled in my faith. I struggled in developing a personal relationship with God, through His son, Jesus.

Let’s just say, I struggled until I got tired of going around the same mountain and surrendered. Praise The Lord, I’ve come a long way.

I’ve learn to appreciate and count it all joy as I keep moving forward, by faith, as God puts more patience in my life.

Count it all joy, when we pray and God answers.

Count it all joy, when we have wisdom to understand life is sowing and reaping. Life is realizing we can’t give what we don’t have. It comes from with. Life is sharing and helping one another.

It’s a beautiful thing to share “once upon a time” testimonies. It’s truly tough when we don’t know what we don’t know.

Count it all joy, when things in life can feel surreal.
Count it all joy, when somethings are forgotten and somethings linger, just enough to dwell on day in and day out.

Count it all joy, when trials and tribulations (things and stuff) help us grow and builds patience.

Count it all joy, when X, Y and Z moments challenge us.

Count it all joy, when we take responsibility for wrong choices.

Count it all joy, when God removes anything or anyone keeping us stuck.

Count it all joy, when we realize the past can’t keep us prisoners or stop our future blessings.

Count it all joy, when we understand nothing nor anyone is perfect, except Jesus.

Count it all joy, when it is, what it is. Let it go.

Count it all joy, when we know who we are and what we bring to the table.

Count it all joy, when the joy of the Lord is our strength.

Count it all joy, when we know, if God is for us, who can be against us.

Count it all joy that God loves us even when we stumble.

Count it all joy, that there will always be naysayers.

Once upon a time, we were naysayers. Let’s bless them and live our life thanking God that we’re not where we use to be.

Enjoy your day, my friends, as we count it all joy!

Abundant blessings, my friends, because the just shall live by faith. Praise The Lord.

As always, I welcome your thoughts. (smile)

©Ann V Friend, afriendofjesus2013Blog, Aug 2013 to present.

Patience and Silence

Patience and silence are two powerful energies. Patience makes you mentally strong. Silence makes you emotionally strong.
~ Author Unknown ~

And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
~ Romans 5:3-5 ~

Hello friends. (smile) Sometimes, life throws challenges, tests or fill in the blank____________.

Sometimes, we can forget about the retesting of a previous victory. (shock face) Sometimes, we participate in nonsense.

I had to reset for a few days because I failed a retesting twice. Ugh. Two different days and it was still a no go on both tests.

Praise The Lord for His mercy and grace. (smile) Praise The Lord when we don’t beat ourself up for losing our cool and failing the test.

Remember Romans 8:28. All things.

I’m learning that patience and silence builds spiritual strength and produces spiritual fruit to endure things and stuff during Y moments. I’m understanding that life does go on even when I fail the test. (smile)

I believe patience has the most retesting. So I’m walking through retesting by faith. Do it by faith.

There are some things designed to help us grow. Walk through with patience and silence. Remember, everyone has an opinion. We don’t have to participate in every idle comment.

Patience and silence becomes easier when we choose to let stuff go!

Patience and silence becomes easier, when you know who you are.

Patience and silence disarms our button when being pushed.

Patience and silence can bring a smile when we know God is always in charge. Praise The Lord.

Blessings as we learn to choose better while walking through testing with patience and silence. (smile)

God’s Amazing Grace

People don’t change until the pain of remaining the same becomes too great.
~ Unknown Author ~

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.
~ 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
~ Hebrews 11:1 ~

Hello friends. (smile) Everyday, we make choices. Everyday, something or someone plays a part toward our growth. Everyday, regardless of how we choose, we have God’s amazing grace. How about that. (smile)

God’s Word tells us “my grace is sufficient for thee.” When we stumble, we have God’s amazing grace. When we lose our cool, we have God’s amazing grace. When we, fill in the blank_______________, say it with me, we have God’s amazing grace. (smile)

When those silly thoughts creep in, tell em, “grace, I have God’s amazing grace.” Say it with authority!

Learning, to move on, from past mistakes, brings freedom, to live life with God’s amazing grace. Move on, by faith, until it comes naturally.

Let God’s amazing grace replace the woulda, coulda, shoulda we carry by remembering Romans 8:28 tells us, And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Blessings, my friends, as we live life to the fullest today with God’s amazing grace! (smile)

Tribute to COL Tomas DeLeon

When we feel a sense of belonging it is not because we are the same as everyone else, but because we have been accepted as we are.
~ Unknown Author ~

Hello friends. Sharing a beautiful article, about my friend, COL Tomas DeLeon.

Commentary: Making the final journey with a friend, mentor and Soldier.
Written by Lt Col Craig S Heathscott

October 08, 2014
MIAMI – The flight attendant’s voice cracked somewhat, which added to the impact of the words, “… we have the honor of carrying a fallen Soldier on today’s flight—Col. Tomas DeLeon… ”

It had been a simple request that immediately brought tears to the flight attendant and set in motion a chain of events that would ultimately highlight a near 14-month-journey. As the military escort for Col. DeLeon—Tomas— I just wanted the passengers to know they were in the presence of a fallen Soldier and, respectfully requested they remain seated while family exited first. What I got far exceeded my original request.

We worked together on the Joint Staff of the National Guard Bureau, but had known each other for several years. He was a great Soldier, friend and mentor, which made being appointed to escort him and his family to his final resting place in Gurabo, Puerto Rico, such an honor; one that I have never experienced before in 28 years of service. But, my final journey with Tomas began in June 2013, when he was diagnosed with a cancerous tumor on his brain. It would end on Sept. 17 in Gurabo, Puerto Rico.

Surgeons at Walter Reed National Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, successfully removed the tumor the same month it was discovered. Over the next several months, Tomas traveled to and from the hospital by himself, at his choice, on Metro most times for treatments while stopping by the Pentagon for coffee on an occasional visit. However, the tumor grew back and the visits became fewer. This Soldier fought the hard fight, but ultimately the enemy overtook him on September 5 at his home in Woodbridge, Virginia.

“ . . . was a 27-year Army Veteran, of the Army National Guard, so we ask that you honor him and remain seated once we land so that the military escorts, and the family can exit first,” the flight attendant said, seemingly relieved that he was able to complete the announcement without breaking down.

Sitting a few rows behind me, Ivette DeLeon smiled with obvious pride and winked at me as the passengers learned about her husband and that they were also in the presence of his wife, son (spouse and child), who serves as a staff sergeant in the Army Reserves, and daughter (spouse). By the time this announcement was complete, the only sound I heard was the lady beside me who was overwhelmed with emotion. It was a very special moment, but nobody on American Airlines flight 1155 could have imagined what lay ahead as we began the approach into Miami International Airport.

As we neared our gate, the silence quickly dissipated as seemingly everyone was excited about something outside the windows on the right side of the plane. Next thing I knew, water began rolling down the windows; literally, they looked like teardrops, which were becoming more noticeable from the inside of the plane. I truly didn’t know what was happening. As we continued to taxi I could see out my window the fire truck that was shooting a stream of water over the plane as a similar stream was being returned to it from the other side—a water cannon salute for my friend, mentor and fellow Soldier.

It was all happening so fast that I felt like I was living a dream as a half dozen more fire trucks were on display followed by 15 patrol cars from the Miami Dade County Police Department. As if this wasn’t impressive enough, I could see in front of the vehicles were a long line of firefighters and police officers standing at parade rest as a sign of respect. Even the ground crew was motionless in reverence to this fallen Soldier. There were no less than 100 people participating in this solemn event.

There couldn’t have been a dry eye on the plane, Soldiers included. The family and I were overwhelmed. Based on my previous experience with airline travel, I couldn’t help but wonder, better yet stress about, how many people would actually jump up to get their bags. I couldn’t have been more wrong, thankfully—no movement. I stood and waved the family forward and as they started to walk down the aisle the passengers broke out in applause. I was so moved by this last gesture that after the family moved past me at the front of the plane I turned toward the back of the plane, in my full dress uniform, and saluted the passengers who returned the gesture with another round of applause.

When the pilot came out of the cockpit to greet me, I learned he was a veteran himself. It was apparent that once he got the word from the flight attendant at the beginning of the flight about what was going on, he reached out to Miami to get everything organized quickly. I’m even told he flew faster in order to give the passengers more time to allow for this spectacle to ensure they wouldn’t miss connecting flights. He escorted Lt. Col. Stephen Holdeman and I to the tarmac so we could receive our Soldier.

As the ground crew started to remove Col. DeLeon from the plane, we rendered and held our salute to honor this fallen Soldier until he was on the transport. Again, another solemn moment as we were surrounded by the large contingent of police and firefighters rendering the same honors. The casket was placed on a special transport carrier decorated with the American flag on one side and symbols representing each of the military services adorned the other. Sadly enough, this is a common practice at airports as many Soldiers have been escorted to their final resting place in this manner.

The transport took the lead across the airport grounds followed by the 15 Miami Dade County patrol cars with lights flashing. I was afforded the opportunity to ride in the middle of the pack, and it was inspiring to watch this parade across Miami International as it almost didn’t seem real. We were passing by larger-than-life planes; some of these aircraft had to yield to our procession. I would learn from the officer I rode with that most of this team had volunteered to participate in the celebration. The call came out a couple hours earlier that a fallen Soldier was being received at the airport, and everyone started calling in that they would be there, she said.

I experienced America and the ‘American Spirit’ on American Airlines flight 1155; and while Col. Tomas DeLeon would have been embarrassed, humbled at this spectacle on his behalf, he would have would been grateful that his family was treated with such respect. He would have been proud to be an American having served his country as a Soldier. I’m sure my friend would join me in giving one final salute to American Airlines and the fine Americans who witnessed and participated in this display of patriotism honoring a Soldier/veteran. We salute you.

What a beautiful article.

Sometimes, in day-to-day things and stuff, we forget to be grateful for family and friends, who truly bless our life, with memories, from those, both on earth and in heaven.

Everyday, we are blessed with memories that provide a smile, a heartfelt laugh, or whatever that someone did for us when we truly needed it.

God is pretty awesome in the way He can bring the most cherished memory to touch our heart as we remember those no longer with us and those who show up when we need friends the most.

When I read the article about Tomas, my eyes watered a little and I thanked God for the honor and privilege to have known such a great Soldier, friend and co-worker.

I thanked Him for old and new friends, who in one way or another, leave me with some great memories and those who help keep me grounded in times that I need friends the most.

Blessings and thank you friends!

Love and Forgiveness

Just because you’ve made mistakes doesn’t mean your mistakes get to make you. Take notice of your inner critic, forgive yourself and move on.
~ Unknown Author ~

And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.
~ Jeremiah 31:34~

And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing. Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.
~ 1 Corinthians 13:3-8 (NKJV) ~

Hello friends. (smile) Love and forgiveness is needed to keep us from being stuck. Remember, things and stuff will be different for each of us. In life, we will make mistakes. In life, we will stumble. In life, we get hurt. Love and forgiveness heals.

Love ourself enough to forgive because God does. He does not withhold His love or remind us of our mistakes.

The past, to include challenges from yesterday should be forgiven.

The past does not define who we are today, unless we allow it.

Here’s the thing, sometimes, we make poor choices. Repent and forgive ourself. Those who love us will help us move forward because love never fails.

Love and forgiveness, with pure motives, is a beautiful thing to give and receive.

Love and forgiveness will trump angst.

Love and forgiveness helps us make better choices.

Love and forgiveness will renew the mind.

Love and forgiveness strengthens relationships.

Love and forgiveness frees us to live and enjoy life.

I have a few awesome friends that I am praying, by faith, are able to forgive and move forward with life because God and I care for them.

Love and forgiveness is a beautiful thing when we know that someone cares.

Blessings, my friends, as you enjoy your day! (smile)

My Entry for the IWSG Anthology

IMG_0340.JPG (2).JPG

Hello friends and welcome to our Co-hosts for October:

Kristin Smith – http://swordsandstilettos.blogspot.com/
Elsie http://mockturtlemusings.com/
Suzanne Furness http://suzannefurness.blogspot.com/
Fundy Blue http://selkiegrey4.blogspot.com/

We all need encouragement in life. My post entry is to encourage anyone, out there, with a passion to write, to start writing. Just do it. The more you write, the better you get. Do it for yourself.

Writing can be a work of art. Writing can be an individual’s masterpiece. I’m an old school kinda girl, who believes that writing can be as unique and different as God created each of us to be. There is something beautiful about being free enough to write in your own style.

Writing takes patience. Writing takes confidence. Writing takes faith to believe in what we bring to the table as a writer. Writing can start by putting thoughts on a page. Writing can be our statement to the world as only we can tell it. Writing can be fact or fiction.

Its our choice. I choose to write about my spiritual journey and maturity in my Christian walk. I choose to share my unique personality in my own self expression. I encourage this same blessing to you.

Choosing to be an unique individual with your own voice is a beautiful thing. Choosing to be fearless in your unique expression is a beautiful thing to behold. Choosing your own writing preference is your choice.

I admire successful and published authors. They validate my faith that writing and completing a book is possible.

Start and have faith in your writing ability builds courage to keep writing until that book is finished.

Keep the faith to finish your book and find the right publisher!

So write and keep writing until you reach the end. Remember to laugh and have fun along the journey!

Category: Writing
Author Ann V. Friend
Blog website: http://afriendofjesus2013.com/
I give IWSG permission to use my post in their IWSG anthology book.