A place to find Hope

Category: hard to be positive

How can We Survive in This Not So Friendly World?

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This is a busy day for me. Just got home from have a blood test done, and later today I am off to PT.

I thought the busyness of the holidays would go away, but I guess there is no rest for the wicked

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I promised you that I would be starting a new formatt today. What I will be doing, is sharing excerpts from my first book, Signs of Hope: Ways to Survive in an Unfriendly World.

Each post I will share another excerpt. Keep coming back to read the excerpts. Better yet….

Go to the top of this page and click on “Subscribe.” When you do all future post will go directly to your inbox.

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Preface

I waited patiently for the Lord;

he turned to me and heard my cry.

He lifted me out of the slimy pit,

out of the mud and mire;

he set my feet on a rock

and gave me a firm place to stand.

Psalm 40:1–2

One of the most exciting things that can happen in your life is to have a close encounter with God. Moses had several. A burning bush started talking to him; he went to Mt. Sinai where God gave him the Ten Commandments. He raised his staff during a fierce battle to help fight off the enemy. Moses and the Israelites received manna directly from God.

Elijah had a close encounter with God when ravens brought him food while he was in the wilderness at God’s direction. Daniel met some lions that the bad guys thought would eat him. Instead God calmed the lions—and they became pets for Daniel. Everyone that met Jesus had a close encounter.

God showed His love through many close encounters in the Bible, and He can do it for you today. You may have already had a close encounter without realizing it ever happened. Did you ever turn a corner you hadn’t planned to turn and seen an old friend who would have missed otherwise? Have you ever happened on the scene of a horrible accident you would have been involved in had you been there just a second sooner? During a lightning storm, were you ever close to a strike that hit the ground? Have you ever felt alone and abandoned and cried out to God for help and then felt a real peace that you have never felt before?

You may have encountered some of these situations, or others. God is watching over you every day. He wants to protect you. He has a plan for you and me. If danger is near, He may choose to spare your life because He has a path He wants you to take to help others to know Him better.

I went through some tough times because I felt lost after I retired from teaching. I had no purpose. I tried being a salesman at several places, and even tried to run my own business as a salesman. I failed at all of them. I went into the lowest spot in my life and was ready to end my life. God saved me on March 31, 2001, after I cried out, “God I can’t take anymore of this!” I felt calmness in my heart and even the air around me seemed to cool. It was as if God were saying, “It is about time you came back to Me. I have been waiting for you to return. Let Me carry you the rest of the way.”

From that day on I kept praying to God to tell me why He had saved my life. It didn’t take Him long to point to a technical book I had been tinkering with for a few months. It was a book written for people who worked in the cash flow business that gave ideas on how to be a better salesman. Can you believe I was trying to write a book on that? Sure failure was lurking at my door—again!

I had failed at being a salesman, but God kept prompting me to look at the cash flow book very hard again. What was He trying to tell me?

Why did I keep getting the book-in-progress out? Then God finally woke me up. He wanted me to write about my own experiences with depression and share the love of God with others. As I looked at the manuscript I was working on, the titles fit perfectly into a book of encouraging others. I had been using phrases I had seen on bumper stickers to start each chapter.

            One sticker said, “Need Directions?” Another said, “My way is the highway.” Still another said, “Don’t believe everything you think.”

I had intended them to be chapter titles for teaching selling. As I looked at them, I saw what God wanted.

“Need directions?” was actually God telling us to read the Bible.

“My way is the highway” was God saying that we need to choose the right path that leads us to heaven.

“Don’t believe everything you think” was telling me that Satan can plant garbage in our minds to cause us to drift away from God.

The rest is history. I immediately dove into to writing this book. I was excited the day I started back in 2001, and I am still excited today. I started out writing a book about selling and ended up writing about getting eternal life for free. I had finally found something I could help give away free. No down payment. No monthly installments. No interest rates. Just accept the Lord into your heart and you have a free trip to heaven with its entire splendor.

As I worked on this preface, I searched my computer for the chapter titles I had used for the cash flow book to show how they had been transformed. I came across a statement on the very page I was looking at and saw something I had never seen before. I know I hadn’t typed it because it was in a different color ink. I never use any color but black in my work.

As I read it, I was sure God wanted me to read it. It said: “I love this! Let’s keep going! No catches. Just the peace in knowing that you are able to share God’s love and works to all those you have contact with, and even bless someone you don’t.”

That is exactly how it was typed. I didn’t correct any wording, or add any words to make it look more dramatic for you. It wasn’t sent to anyone but me. It was at the top of the page I was searching for. God may have placed it there way back when I first changed my direction, but I missed it then. But I found it, and it only confirms why I spent the last seven years toiling to get to the final outcome.

            God’s timing is amazing.

I had my own special close encounter with God, and He has been my refuge ever since.

This book hopefully leads you to have a close encounter with God. You may have chosen this book because it deals with the hurts in your life as well as other “afflictions” we all face. They can be crippling, and even deadly. I lived with depression, self-doubt, anxiety, hopelessness and fear of failure for many years until I turned back to God and found help through a doctor who determined I also had a chemical imbalance. Now through a close encounter with God and the right medication I am able to cope and have a productive life.

My original working title, Close Encounters of the Heavenly Kind, comes from a favorite movie of mine, Close Encounters of the Third Kind. It is about a man who has visions in his head and can’t understand what is happening. So he goes on a search to find out. That is what people with the many closed walls around them are going through. They are sad, and they can’t cope. They do not know why they are that way. They, too, are searching for answers.

As the book progressed, I wanted a more “hopeful” title for it. And since it is based on sayings and signs I’ve seen and the fact I wanted the book to provide the same hope for others as I have found, I was easily persuaded that the title Signs of Hope: Ways to Survive in an Unfriendly World might be a better fit. You will still find several allusions to “close encounters” throughout the book and I wanted you to know the how and why I use that term so often.

The bumper sticker idea came from my hobby of collecting them for many years. I looked at them again years later, and realized they had some meaning, and I started writing about everyday connections to them.

That is my story (so far) and I am stickin’ to it! I hope that through this book, you will also begin searching for some meaning to become stronger, and choose a path that leads you to a closer relationship with God.

Let the adventure begin.

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I shared the preface to start with to give you a feel of what is ahead from you as you travel with me through the book.

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Have you had those kind of days when you are not sure what is coming at you? You certainly are not alone.

Lean on God for help like I did. He brought me out of the muck and more, and today I am very excited for what life might have in store for me.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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Woke Cancel Culture, and Critical Race Theory Are Spreading Fast

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Had a progress test today at physical therapy. I improved in all areas except one and that was almost the same. That’s the good news. The bad news is I am not sure how much longer I can use the PT. You have to be referred, and I haven’t been referred in a while.

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I’m making a huge prediction here right now. This is way off the subject, but I am picking Oregon State University football to win tomorrow against Stanford. If they lose you can pick on me.

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I looked up several phrases that I didn’t understand. Now you will know as well.

  1. Woke cancel culture—Kicked out of Social Media.
  2. Critical race therory—against black people.

Neither one of those are on my bucket list to do. Very discriminating.

Why are these phrases even around? They are used so much, the Webster’s dictionary added them as new words.

Well, I did research on this as well.:

The origin of both of those phrases come from the far left. That explains a lot to me. I certainly am not far left, but I can see why they make up these fake phrases to try to plow down our rights.

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How are you feeling about your rights today? Do you think they are slipping away?

To me, there is only one way to stay sane in this invironment. Only go by what it tells you in the Bible. There is nothing but truth in it. It speaks to all the left’s retoric.

Do not be overcome with their fake news, and scare tactics. Only go with what God is telling you and you will stand strong.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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Christians are Being Perecuted for Sticking With Their Beliefs

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I can’t help but cry a river for you right now. I am so sad of the way our country is going. The southern border is wide open. The pandemic is worse than ever. Our military is getting trashed by the far left. (I say that, because I am a veteran.)

It is very hard to postive in our world these days. Even the churches are being attacked.

Our Pastor shared with us that, so called, Americans are trying to close down the churches. They want them to pay outlandish taxes. They want to stop having prayer in schools. They want any reference to God taken down from billboards, etc.

What do they fear? Is being a Christain a sin? Of course not. We are children of God, and He is in charge.

We never have to feel ashamned in what we believe. We never have to agree to let people disrupted our Christain values.

We, as Chrisians, need to be strong, and stand up to the attacks. We need to put on the armor of God and be like Christian soldiers.

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How is your life going? Do you feel persecuted for what you believe? Stand bold and strong in your beliefs. That is what is right in God’s eyes. He will reward you for doing that.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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With the Way the World is, Why Are We Here?

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Americans are still trapped in Afghanistan. Thousands are coming across our southern border. The pandemic is more powerful than ever.

With all of this happening, why are we here anyway?

It is true that our faith is being challenged more each day. It is hard to be a positive Christian. What good are we?

We all have a purpose designed by God.

It doesn’t matter what you do, God wants you doing it.

The education problems we are having today with the teaching of racism, etc, what good can a teacher do? I am a retired teacher, and I know that if you are a teacher you are very importnat in God’s eyes. He wants you there to nuture, and show compassion for those children. They are with you more than they are with their parents. You could have great influence with them. Thank God He placed you there.

How about a hair dresser. They are at the prime spot, becasue so many clients come and unload on the haidresser while they are getting cut their hair done. You can talk to them to console them and give them hope. Thank God he Placed you there.

How about parents, and grandparents? They are vital to the proper growing up of the children as well. Raise the child in a way that pleases God.

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Never wonder why you are here. No matter what you do, use it to give others hope. Use it to show you care, and that you are loving and compassionate. This is a perfect way to get through to the people who are depressed, and wavering.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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We Struggle to Have Hope During Our Storms

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I am having a problem writing this blog, because of my growing pessimistic view is getting larger.

I told my wife about my difficulties and she looked at me and said, “You have to have hope!”

That snapped me out of it, and I am ready to give out hope:

Helping those around you spreads hope.

Often things we worry about never happen.

Prayer helps you through any storms you may have.

Everyone needs to be loved.

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I went grocery shopping today, and I was amazed of how many people refuse to wear masks. I saw a couple, and the wife had a mask on, but her husband did not.

He looked like he wanted someone to challenge him. I just felt he had that right, but he was endangering others around him and himself.

Over 90% of the new cases of COVID have not had the vaccine. That is staggering. People who refuse to get the vaccine are dying by the thousands.

The hope we need to find here is that people will see the huge amount of unvaccinated people dying and go ahead and get their shots.

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Have you had some down time in your life lately? Do you fear getting out because of the virus?

Cling to the robe of God, and He will walk you through any storm you are having. He will be with you 24/7. He is the poster child for hope.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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Idolatry is Causing Many to Turn Away From God

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In our world of sadness and chaos we wonder what we need to do to survive in this not so friendly world. I heard a powerful message at church yesterday about idolatry.

When we think of it, many of the dictators of this world live off of idolatry.

Think about the Taliban in Afghanistan. They have only one thing on their minds, and that is people worship them or they die.

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The Bible has a story about a city that turned to idols instead of God. God punished them by destroying the whole city. There was nothing left there but dried bones.

The people who lived through this cried for help, and God said they need to repent to receive His grace.

Here is a definition of idolatry:

It takes place when we exchange God’s self revelations and replace them with our own ideas of who we think God is or should be.

The essence of idolatry is thinking thoughts about God that is unworthy of Him.

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Have our bones dried up because we worship idols like, cell phones, TV, our new car, or boat?

Take inventory of your live and see if you have placed something in front of God that you idolize.

Some thoughts:

God can be trusted.

God’s promises are sure.

God loves you just the way you are.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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In a Hopeless World We Find Hope in God

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So much sadness in our country right now. Thirteen young soldiers died on Thursday, and it could have been avoided.

It grieves as much as losing on of my own family, since I m a veteran.

What hope do we have when all of this is going on?

First a definition of the word hope;

“The anticipation of a future that is better than the present.”

Hope is my main thrusted on this site. I try to share hope in every one of my posts.

Cutting to the chase…

It is God’s past faithfulness that motivates hope for the future.

Reminder… Without God it is hopeless. I couldn’t survive without Him.

Remember that God walks us through the darkness in our lives. He hears our soft cries for help.

Laminations 3: 24 says… “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I have hope in him.”

There is another verse in Laminations that describes God:

Steadfastness

He has mercies

He is faithful

His love never ceases.

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If you are feeling hopelessness creeping into your life, cling to God’s robe and seek His protection. He listens to you.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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It is Hard to be Positive in This Not so Friendly World

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More updates from Afghanistan.

Horrible reports are coming in. The most aggreges one is that a woman who was cooking for the Taliban was burned alive because she didn’t cook the way they wanted her to.

Many more horrible stories coming in I will not share, because of the graphic scenes it may cause.


I try to think on as many positives things as I can. I think we need to lighten up the dark side a little.

I had to miss two weeks of church while on vacation, last week. It was very hard to do that. I need to keep hearing about the good things God is doing for us.

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Here are some good things God does for us.

  1. He loves us unconditionally.
  2. He protects us from the dark side.
  3. His Son died so that we may have eternal life.
  4. When storms come, He is there holding our hand and helping us through them.

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Have you had some storms come into your life? has it been a rough road for you?

FEAR NOT! The shortest verse in the Bible comes from Jesus Himself. He is there with us 24/7.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit from this site, please let them know.

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