Friday, April 29, 2011

Life & Death

This morning, my friend Amy went home to be with the Lord. While I am sad for her family & close friends, I am rejoicing that she is no longer in pain & is with Jesus. Watching her life since I met her several years ago, I have been encouraged by her. Amy dealt with a lot of physical pain from colitis & then cancer. But I never heard her complain. She would tell us when she was having bad days, but she never whined like I've been known to do. And she encouraged me more times than I can count!

Even when the cancer diagnosis came, she exhibited dignity & grace that only God could give. Amy let everyone know that God had given her peace about dying & was only concerned for those she was leaving behind. She truly knew that Heaven was far better than earth.

As I read her facebook page, I'm noticing 2 different types of responses. The first is one of sadness, shock & disbelief. There are those who just don't understand how one could be at peace over death or see it as a sign of the "end". Then, there are the reactions of those who know Jesus! They are sad that Amy has left us, but totally rejoicing that her suffering has ended & she is in a far better place.

I'm so thankful that I know my Savior lives & knows that when I die, this is not the "end!" I couldn't imagine having to live life without knowing that when I die, I will be with Jesus. (John 3:16 - "For God so loved the world that He gave His one & only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.") (John 11:25-26 - "Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives in me will never die. Do you believe this?"")

Do you know where you will go when you die?

We are all sinners. We are all unrighteous. Romans 3:10 says - "There is no one righteous, not even one."

Because we are sinners, we are unworthy to be with God. Romans 3:23 says "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." God is perfect & therefore can have no part of sin.

Because of sin, we are doomed to death (separation from God). Romans 5:12 says "Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned."

BUT Jesus, the son of God, paid the debt for our sin & has given us eternal life. Because the debt is paid, our sin is forgiven, washed away! He paid the ransom for our sin & cleanses us from unrighteousness. Romans 6:23 - "For the wages of sin is death, BUT the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus Our Lord."  Romans 5:8 - "But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

This gift is free! All we have to do is confess to God that we are sinners in need of a Savior & that we believe Jesus is our Savior! Romans 10:10-11, 13 says "For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says, "Anyone who trust in Him will never be put to shame." for "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."

So it's that simple. All you have to do is accept what Jesus has done for you! John 1:12 says "Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His Name, He gave the right to become children of God." And once you are a child of God, you don't have to fear death! Because death is just an ending to this life on earth & the beginning of life forever with Jesus in Heaven!

Dear Jesus, I pray that You will comfort Amy's family & friends. I ask that You would speak to those who read this & comfort them. But more importantly, if they don't know You, that You would draw them to You. That they would see the truth of Your Word & trust in You as their Savior. Thank you for coming to earth to die for me (& all of us). I don't deserve such love & mercy but I'm so thankful You came to give me life! And so thankful that I don't have to fear death but actually look forward to being with You! In Jesus' name, Amen!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

"Lost" Friends

No, I didn't lose any friends. Instead, this post is about friends I made because of the tv show "Lost".

When Hubby & I started watching Lost, he started listening to podcasts about Lost. One of the podcasts was "The Weekly Lost Podcast" by Cliff & Stephanie Ravenscraft. They would record live at gspn.tv & we started listening & chatting. Eventually we even met up with them near Cincy. At one of the meetups, we met Anne from Germany.

Anne is one of the sweetest young ladies I've ever met. We've met her in person twice. Even though I'm old enough to almost be her mom, I count her as a dear friend. I've been able to encourage her & pray for her as she walks through the toughest struggle of her young life as she fights Anorexia. You can read of her struggles in her blog, Intercontinental Life, were she is very transparent about her fight! I truly love this young lady & know she will triumph over this! I'm so thankful for "Lost" because without it, I would never have met Anne & had the privilege of being her friend & being blessed by her. Even in the midst of her struggles, she prays for me & encourages me!

My other online friend I met after listening to another podcast by Stephanie Ravenscraft called "The Fulltime Mom". Her name is Ann also. I've never met Ann in person, but hope to someday. Ann & I are so much alike. I'm so thankful that God brought us together! We have been able to pray for each other, encourage each other & be sounding boards for each other. I think because we do live away from each other, we can talk frankly about things going on in our lives & give each other godly guidance. She is a dear friend, even though we have never met.

I'm so thankful that God used "Lost" to give me 2 of my dearest friends. It amazes me that God uses some of strangest things to bring about some of the best friendships in life. Anne & Ann, I love you both dearly! I thank God for you every day!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Update on life with traveling hubby!

Hubby has been traveling for 2 1/2 years now. I'm very thankful he has a job at all, but a traveling job when you have a family is very hard. And now it seems harder since he had an assignment here in town for 3 months. We were so blessed to have him home every night for those 3 months.

We know this is the way it has to be for right now as God led him to this job & no other job has been provided for him. So, we must deal with what we've been given. I know that God will give us the strength to get through this. I just keep praying for another job or something better.

Right now, it seems like this is an almost impossible thing to bear. My fibromyalgia has been flaring more this month. Allergies have got my kids feeling miserable. All 3 have coughs. Breathing treatments are happening every 4 hrs. All this rain & storms are not helping any. And on top of all this, my attitude isn't helping. During the week, I'm just waiting for Friday night to come. I'm trying really hard to live in the moment, but I'm struggling.

I feel guilty because I'm struggling. I'm not dying. I don't have any major sickness. My kids are relatively healthy & these allergies will pass. My hubby is still alive & comes home every weekend. I may have pain, but I know it won't cause permanent damage to my body. My life is relatively drama free. My family is fairly normal. I have lots of friends both locally & online. Then why am I struggling so???

I'm not really sure. I think it is a combination of hormones(too many emotions!), the weather (too little sunshine!),  fibromyalgia (too much pain!) & separation (too little hubby!). I also think it is weakness. Why? I think Satan knows my weakness(all above) & uses that to put discontent, doubt & discouragement in my mind. I'm thinking I need to spend more time in prayer & Bible study with my Savior! I also covet your prayers for me, my kids & for hubby.

Just wanted to share my struggles right now. We are struggling here at home while hubby travels, but it will get easier & it will get better. The kids are doing okay. They miss daddy a lot, but they soldier through. Hopefully we will soon get to travel with hubby. Our schedule is tight right now, but I am working to free up our schedule so we can go when the opportunity arises. I know that being transparent, I'm helping myself & maybe helping someone else who is struggling. It's so easy to hide & keep all the feelings inside, but it does nothing but cause depression & pain! Which leads to more struggling!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Beeker Family Easter

Here's a video of some of the pictures I took on Easter at my Aunt Pat's. Hope you all enjoy!
video

Friday, April 22, 2011

I Know A Man

Just wanted to share a poem I wrote in 1986 for Word of Life Teens Involved creative writing. Can't believe that was 25 years ago. Enjoy!

I Know A Man

I know a man
who cares for me,
He lives in Heaven
and can calm the sea.

I know a man
who cares for you,
He can live inside
your heart, that is true

I know a man
that I want you to meet,
I'll tell you all about Him
if you come to sit at my feet.

This man was born
in a lowly stable,
Born to die
and make Heaven more than a fable.

He prayed to God
and preached the Word.
Miracles He performed
to bring glory to the Lord.

He did no wrong
or evil, ever,
But still they blamed Him
for wrong deeds, they were so clever.

Then one day
they crucified Him,
They hung Him on a cross
and left Him to die on that limb.

This man suffered pain
and His blood was shed,
For our sins
He died and bled.

Then they took Him down
and placed Him in a tomb,
Soldiers guarded Him
so no one would steal Him in the gloom.

Three days He was there
with soldiers at the door,
Mary went to see Him
and knelt upon the floor.

But then a miracle took place,
an angel of God rolled back the rock,
And this man came out
and began to gather His flock.

For forty days
He preached again,
He trained His men
to preach against sin.

Now He is in Heaven
a place for you and me He went to prepare,
So that one great day
we could meet Him there.

You can meet Him too
in only you believe.
All there is to do
is to ask and receive.

He lives in my heart
oh, I'm so glad,
When you reject Him
it makes Him so sad.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Struggling

As I sit here typing, the sky is calm for the moment. But my body is not. Every muscle is screaming. My muscles are tight with knots in them. My joints feel like they need to be popped. I'm at the same time exhausted & keyed up. I have a tinge of a headache that threatens to become a migraine. I'm also having numb/tingling sensations in my cheeks, arms & feet. On top of this, my emotions threaten to spill out everywhere. I've been moody & edgy all day.

Why? Because I have fibromyalgia. My body is over stimulated. Normal activity can sometimes cause extreme pain. Other times it doesn't bother me. My body is a human barometer. I can feel the weather changing. We are under a tornado watch as I type this. We have a front stalled over us & I can feel it. My body is anticipating it. It is tight & on edge. When the front actually arrives, I will get a little relief.

I try not to dwell on my fibromyalgia. It's just a fact of life for me. I've been diagnosed for 14 yrs now, but I think I've had it all my life. I don't remember ever NOT hurting. You just have to push through it. Sometimes you take it easier. Sometimes you rest more. BUT you never give in to the pain. Because if you do, you end up in bed & down for a long time. The months I gave in to it (14 yrs ago) were the darkest days of my life.

But today I'm really struggling. So I'm writing to let you all know so you can pray for me. Sometimes when I hurt, I become short tempered. Today I've yelled at my kids. They are now upstairs playing quietly. They are so very good for me when I'm really hurting bad. But I feel horrible for not being able to do things with them.  Sometimes, like today, I can't stand to be touched. It's so hard to not hug them, so I do & try not to jump out of my own skin as I do it. Hubby traveling makes it harder. He's not here to give me a break or to rub my tight muscles. I know it's hard on him too to know I'm hurting & he's not here.

One of the worst things about having fibromyalgia is how fast an episode hits you. One minute I'm doing great. The next I'm hurting more than words can express. When I'm hurting, it's hard to concentrate. I tend to get very quiet. It takes all my energy to concentrate on what others are saying which is why I tend to become reclusive on those days. This of course leads to a downward spiral if I'm not careful.  So I try to get active on Facebook or Twitter when I'm having a bad day so I concentrate on what others are doing & not just myself. I have lots of friends who have fibromyalgia. When I'm hurting, I know they are too. So I pray for them a lot! It gets my mind off me & onto them.

If you'd pass me in the store or on the street, you would never know the war that goes on within my body. Most days I hide it pretty well. Today, not so much. I know I was limping & moving slow at Bible study today. The girls also said it showed in my eyes. When you can see physical symptoms, you know I'm doing bad. I don't hide my pain to be deceptive. I hide it because I figure most people have their own problems & don't need to hear about my pain.

So, this is a rare glimpse inside of me! A small peek at what it's like to live with fibromyalgia. It's painful, but I'm thankful for this journey. Because of it, I've been able to reach out to others living in pain. I've become more compassionate to others who hurt. I've felt God's presence in such a real, comforting way. For when you are hurting & there's nothing a doctor can do, you turn to God. He may not have taken my physical pain away, but He's given me peace & comfort. I'm not alone in my struggle. God is right here with me. He gives me the strength to make it through these rough days. Without Him, I would have given up years ago!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

More Spring Fun!


We went to my parents' house tonight. and the kids had a lot of fun! Jessica had so much fun driving Papaw's lawn tractor!

David decided he wanted a turn at driving the tractor too! I think Papaw is going to have help mowing this summer!

Jamie didn't drive the tractor but I did get a couple pictures of her outside.

On the left is one of Dad's Rhubarb plants. On the right is one of mom's plants. We think it's a pussy willow but we aren't certain.


Here are some of mom's flowers. I can't believe her tulips are blooming. already.

I love her daffodils too!

The hyacinths smelled so good!
More Daffodils!



  I also took some pictures of mom's cats. As you can see, Jessica loves them!








On the left is her big tom cat. He was napping. On the right is one of the momma cats.








 These 2 loved posing for me!












 The calico on the left & gray one one the right are 2 of my favorites.






The 2 below were hoping dad would feed them.



 I'll leave you with pics of the beautiful sunset God blessed us with tonight!


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Spring has Sprung!


Spring is here! It is beautiful out & some of my flowers are blooming. My lilacs are full of buds! Just thought I'd share some of the pics I've taken over last few days with my iphone (so they aren't the best quality!). Enjoy!!