Thursday, 5 July 2018

Poor Cesar's gone 😢

Our lovely corgi dog Cesar passed away on Thurs 21st June 2018. After being part of our family for 12 years we really do miss him. In this blog I just wish to share a few photos and little points about him.

He was some pup....the biggest and strongest of the litter, lively, sparky, playful, and strong-willed. He was never afraid to stand up for himself or fight his corner if needed. Right from the moment he joined the pack of our family he was adored by us all. He was so intelligent and could nearly talk to us. 😂 

He understood our names. Adrian: master and tease who walks and feeds me. Isaac: second in command for walking and playing with me. Rhonda: she doesn't let me into every room (afraid I'll leave too many hairs) but I sneak in anyway when she's not about. Jemima: she's the big softy in the pack, I can get a few extra treats from her but don't do everything she says.

Cesar used to lie up the garden like a king (or should I say emperor). It was his territory and he hated the window cleaner or oil delivery man to enter it! He even chased the magpies from it but amazingly would allow small birds to feed from his dish. He had his bush that he loved to lie under sometimes when it was hot. But he, also, loved to roll in the snow. He was hardy. After all, corgis were bred for life on the cold Welsh mountains.

He was a great watch. He barked when anyone came to the door. He knew the sound of Adrian, Isaac and Jemima's cars but alerted us to anyone else outside. The sound of the doorbell or door knocker drove him crazy. Of course, Adrian coming home from work was a drama time for him! He'd hear the car and run to meet him. I'd say, 'Adrian? Tell him to hurry up' and he'd bark. Then, the doorbell got him barking so excitedly. When the door opened and his master entered, he would be so delighted but would come back to me for praise.

Cesar just loved his walks. Rattle the chain, say 'walk', and he was excited and ready to go. Once out there, he was a big dog in a small dog's body 😂 He loved to meet, sniff and play with other dogs but was unafraid of any dog he did not like. The woods nearby and Peatlands park were favourite haunts. No matter how wet or dark it was, he just liked a walk before he settled for the night. But see Sundays...he expected his walk after dinner!

He had some little quirky things he did that gave us a laugh. Throw him a piece of sausage and he would do a 'food ritual' of rolling on it before he ate it. 😏 He was a male chauvinist. One time we had to keep a stray female corgi overnight. Cesar would not allow her to sleep in his dog house. He left her sleep outside. lol

He celebrated the 60th year of the Queens reign. After all, his very distant relatives were owned by Her Majesty. lol.

Last year poor Cesar got very sick. Isaac took him to the vet and he was diagnosed with pancreatitis. Since then he was on a strict diet of rice and chicken. (It's well we had Moypark nearby for cheap deals on chicken). He got lots of extra TLC and privileges in his old age. Sleeping inside was just expected! Ask him 'In or Out?' and he would run to his little bed inside. He has had ups and downs in his health this past year but kept going until in the end his liver failed. Unfortunately, we had to put him down.

Cesar is gone but not forgotten. We have many treasured memories of him. The problem is that now I've no dog to cover up talking to myself with. So, if you hear me talking to Cesar you'll know I really am cracked. lol

Friday, 20 April 2018

Love Mum, Love Baby

"It has never been a more dangerous time for the unborn child on the island of Ireland." 
These are the words of Lord David Alton a pro-life advocate. Now I am not on some sort of crusade but I am entitled to my view, and I tend to agree with him. A yes vote in the referendum in the Republic of Ireland on 25th May to repeal the eighth amendment would take away the rights of the unborn child. The law in Northern Ireland only allows termination of pregnancies for the purpose of preserving the life of the mother. There are those who wish this to be changed and brought into line with the rest of the UK. If the Assembly at Stormont does not get up and running soon, Westminster will probably change the law. Hence the truth in Lord Alton's statement.

It never ceases to amaze me how people can refer to the unborn child as 'just a clump of cells' and say 'just get rid of it.' It seems like it's not a baby when it is not wanted but it is a baby when it is wanted.

May I suggest that you take time to educate yourself about the details of what really happens in the abortion processes. Look at some of the explicit images of what it means for the unborn child to have to suffer an abortion. Then, tell me if you can honestly say that it is morally right. Don't take life for granted. Abortion does not necessarily bring health, happiness and the ability to conceive when you wish.

I am pro-life but I recognize that, sadly, there are a minority of times when a pregnancy has to be terminated in order to save the life of the mother. In such cases the mother needs love, care and support as she grieves the death of her child.

I came across this quotation on Facebook and I thought I would share it with you in this blog: 
"Being pro-life doesn't mean only campaigning until the referendum. It means fighting for the the pro-life movement until we have adequate resources for women in crisis pregnancies, until we have easily accessible adoption agencies, until we have more funded care for children with life limiting conditions and their families. Being pro-life doesn't stop on May 25th. It stops when we have a country where women don't feel so oppressed that they think abortion is the only option. That is what being pro-life means." (Caoimhe Lynch, NUIG student)
It is lovely to see that there are many young people who are not afraid to stand up for the life of unborn children. I think Caoimhe aptly sums up alternatives to abortion. Those in crisis pregnancies do need love, respect and even practical support but they do have other alternatives to abortion. Also, sometimes they need the support of someone they can trust who is not judgmental but who will encourage them to carry the pregnancy through.

Remember there are some strong women who choose adoption for their child rather than abortion. I am the mother of two beautiful adopted children, Isaac and Jemima. They are now young adults but if they had been aborted, the world would have missed out by never having their wonderful contributions to life....and Adrian and I would have missed out on so much love and joy. So, I can wholeheartedly say that adoption is a better option than abortion.

Yes, we need adequate resources and  practical support for women in crisis pregnancies. Yes, we do need sensitivity and funded care for those with life limiting conditions and their families.

The above photo was taken at a pro-life event which the Both Lives Matter organization held here in Dungannon on Tuesday 17th April, 2018. It was poorly attended but I am not passing judgement on anyone's reasons for not attending. It was an informative evening through which they emphasized that the lives of both mother and baby are precious and matter.

Something more: While I am unashamedly pro-life, I do recognize that there are those who are suffering from guilt and the consequences of abortion. Mothers particularly need loving care and support after the trauma of abortion but do not forget fathers are affected too by abortion. Loving counselling needs to be readily available for all those affected.

When I think of anti-abortion examples, there are two people who immediately spring to mind: Andrea Bocelli the Italian singer whose mother refused to abort him and Gianna Jessen who survived an failed saline abortion. She is an American pro-life and disabilities activist. Listen to their stories online.

The Bible tells us that love does not rejoice in iniquity but love rejoices in truth (1 Cor 13v6). I do not rejoice in the iniquity of murdering unborn children. I do rejoice in the truth that when mothers go through with their pregnancies, their children can be a great blessing as they live out their true potential in life.

Say NO to abortion. May this whole island of Ireland continue to be a safe place for the unborn child!

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Patrick turn the stone!

When I was a little girl I was taught concerning the weather that if March comes in like a lion it goes out like a lamb and if it comes in like a lamb it goes out like a lion. Add to that the legend that St. Patrick turns the stone.....and I'm kinda thinking that it is time for some nice warmer weather!

The Beast from the East meeting Storm Emma at the beginning of March was not really a romantic time but it caused some of the worst weather conditions in years. Bitterly cold winds and heavy snow and blizzards resulted in chaos and collisions on the roads, deaths, and school closures. Ah yes, children enjoyed playing in it, building snowmen, igloos and whatever. But it was a horrific experience for all those stranded for hours on the road or for those sleeping out in it. As I listened to the wind outside I was just so glad to be inside out of it all. Minus temperatures and icy paths are just not my scene!

However, now that St.Patrick's Day has past, spring has officially started and the time is to change at the weekend, I look forward to warmer days and brighter evenings. Bring on spring and favourite time of year. I really do hope the lion has finished roaring and the lamb is coming LOL.

Now I know very well that St.Patrick cannot turn the stone or change the weather BUT I know the God who controls the weather. Read Job chapters 37+38 in the Bible for a very descriptive portrayal of God's Almighty power controlling all things, including the weather. The little children's chorus goes:
God controls the wind and clouds and rain and sun.
He controls them, for He made them every one.
He sends the weather from above, and it tells us of His love.
God controls the wind and clouds and rain and sun.
I do not understand all the science behind how God sends various weather conditions or do I question His reasons for why He sends them, but perhaps it would be beneficial to stop and think about some lessons we could learn from the weather, eg

  1. The snow speaks to us of purity. God is pure and He wants us to be pure like Him. 
  2. God lovingly provides for us. He sends the rain and sunshine to help plants, fruit and vegetables to grow. Otherwise we would starve.
  3. The waves roaring reminds us that Jesus is coming back again to earth (Luke 21v15-17).
  4. Is God trying to speak to us and get us to listen to Him by causing adverse weather conditions.
Then, another thought comes to mind....Is there some stone in our own lives that we need to turn to bring up that side of us that pleases God? Now, good works will never save our souls but they do provide evidence to those around us that we have been truly saved. St. Patrick cannot turn the stone to change the weather but we can decide whether or not we wish to turn to follow God and experience the delights of doing His will. May we turn the stones in our lives for better and not for worse!

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

They are all wrong

As I walk into town I often go through Church Lane. It's a short alley way from the car park at the back of Viscount restaurant up to the Market Square in Dungannon. It may be a steep climb for some people but it's a shortcut for me. I cannot help but notice the writing on the wall there. The words 'They are all wrong' are painted on the wall there. When I pass by them, they spark a train of thought, of which I'll share a little bit now.

The words have been there for several years now. I do not know who wrote them or what they are referring to. Are they just the words of some song or are they a cry for help? Does the word 'They' refer to a specific group of people, eg politicians, town planners, religious leaders, or some rights activists?? Does the word 'All' really mean that everyone is wrong or does it mean that just some people have got it all wrong about some matter? (Mind you if it was about the mess the planners made of the Market Square a few years back I would tend to agree but thankfully they have rectified it a bit now). But what if it is a heart rending cry from someone who feels completely misunderstood by everyone around them?

Then my thoughts turn to the fact that we are all wrong by nature (Psalm 14v1-3; Romans 3v10-12). We have all been born in sin and therefore we all do wrong. Yes, we have ALL sinned and fall short of God's standard (Romans 3v23; 5v12). Criminal, self-righteous, good-living, immoral, religious,
atheist, whoever and whatever you are, we have all sinned.

But my thoughts do not stay there for they must turn to Christ the Only One who is not wrong. "In Him is no sin." (1 John 3v5). He was tempted as we are but He is without sin (Hebrews 4v15). He is Holy and undefiled (Hebrews 7v26). He is the Sinless Saviour. He was made sin for us to reconcile us to God (2 Corinthians 5v20+21). Read about His sufferings when He died to save us (Isaiah 53v3-7).

The Lord Jesus is my Sinless Saviour. As a little girl I realized that I was born a sinner and that was why I did wrong. I could not take away my own sin, no matter how good I tried to be but I looked to Christ the Sinless Saviour and repented of my sin. What a wonderful Saviour He has been to me ever since! Do you know Him as your Saviour?

Yes, it's amazing what a few words painted on a wall can make me think about!

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

You are so loved

At this time of the year when people's thoughts are directed to LOVE, perhaps it is an appropriate time for me to say that I believe that marriage is to between a man and a woman as God ordained and that I am pro-life. (Those of you who know me already know that anyway!) But I am writing this blog to remind you that God so loves us and we are to act with love towards others.

God SO LOVED us that He GAVE...
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3v16 KJV).
Stop and meditate on the unfathomable love of God. Then, think about how we can emulate that love in our lives. Love gives sacrificially. True love bears good fruit. Yes, we are so loved but God expects Christians to love one another as Christ has loved us (1 John 4v11).

OK, that's all very good but what has it to do with the above picture? Well, I just cannot help but think of the little defenseless baby in it's mother's womb being so loved by God. What right has anyone to kill it? And yet, millions have been murdered. Then, I must go on to say that it is not only Pro-lifers and those who are anti same sex marriage that God loves. We have ALL been born sinners and we ALL deserve eternal death and WHOEVER believes on Christ can have their sins forgiven and have eternal life.

So, how should we treat those who disagree with us and even vehemently oppose us when we stand up for the life of the unborn children and for marriage as God ordained it between a man and a woman? Read 1 Corinthians 13. There is no room there for being abusive, disrespectful, arrogant or hateful towards those who support SSM and abortion. Remember, love never fails and our love ought to point them to Christ. That does not mean that we cannot stand strong for the truth. Never forget that the vilest of sinners (and there are many others besides homosexuals and abortionists) can be cleansed from their sins by the blood of Christ.

I rejoice that I am so loved and that I will one day stand with that great multitude of redeemed sinners which no man can number before the throne of God (Revelation 7v 9-17). I believe that the millions of unborn babies will be there and that there will be many redeemed homosexuals and redeemed abortionists amongst that great crowd praising God. Praise God you are so loved and make sure you will stand among that great multitude of redeemed sinners, too!

Thursday, 4 January 2018

2017 Reflections

I read this little statement recently:
"You are one of a kind - designed to glorify God as only you can."
What a tremendously encouraging and challenging thought to take with us into 2018!

I want to hold my head high like the seagull in this photo as I enter this New Year and glorify God despite any hurt and discouragement or difficulties I may face.

But first I just want to reflect a little on 2017 by simply adding photos of a few highlights of my summer.

I always enjoy teaching at Holiday Bible events for children but I particularly enjoyed it this past year as I presented the boys and girls with some very simple choices that they each must make in life.
Theme of Holiday Bible School 2017

Day at Amy and Andrew's wedding

My boy reached one quarter of a century

Just a few Photo Memories of my Holiday in Cornwall August 2017

Port Isaac beach
Doc Martin's house
Happy group at Port Isaac with school in background


I absolutely loved those beautiful big flowers hanging in the Drake Centre, Plymouth. Just as they brightened up the shopping centre, so the beautiful memories of 2017 brighten up my ordinary life. Isn't it amazing that our minds are created to major on the lovely, good and beautiful things in life, rather than dwelling on the things we would prefer to forget? I look forward with anticipation to what God has for me in 2018.

I do not know what sort of year you have had but if you are a child of God, take this Bible verse with you into 2018. Remember you are designed to glorify God as only you can. He will instruct you and guide you as to how to fulfill that purpose. Trust Him!
"I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye." (Psalm 32v8)
Wishing you every blessing for 2018

Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Singing Christmas Carols

'Stop playing traditional Christmas carols in public. Santa songs are fine but not carols. They may cause offence. We want Happy Holidays but we don't want Christ to feature in them at all.' Ever heard people express sentiments like these? I have but I want to emphasize that I love some of the great old carols and delight to hear them in public. On Saturday in Rushmere shopping centre it was really lovely to hear an orchestra play some of the traditional Christmas carols and songs. One that particularly took my notice was 'The First Nowell.' Another night I had heard it being sung and those wonderful words "Born is the King of Israel" rang through the shopping centre.

I grew up with Christmas carol singing being part of Christmas. We learnt them in school and we sang them in church. I even went carol singing a few times too! Older people always did seem to appreciate the carols....whatever about our ability to sing lol. I remember an old family friend to whom we brought a Christmas present every year asking us to sing a verse of a carol as she received her gift. As I have matured a bit since then, 🤣 I have come to value Christmas carols even more and I do appreciate their beauty in a carol service.

May I suggest that you take time to listen to the words of carols and see just how filled with Biblical teaching about Christ that they really are. Here are just a few things sung about Christ:

Glory to the newborn King
Jesus our Immanuel
Begotten, not created
He is God and Lord of all
True God of True God
Word of the Father in flesh appearing
Offspring of a virgin's womb
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see
Hail the Incarnate  Deity
Born that man no more may die
Born to give us second birth 
He rules the world with grace and truth 
He made heaven and earth of nought and with His blood mankind hath bought
God and sinners reconciled
Cast out our sin and enter in, be born in us today 
Redeeming love
Redeeming grace 
Set at God's right hand on high

Need I go on? Is it any wonder that they are being objected to? This month on Facebook I am taking some carols and giving Bible references to show where carols are so Biblical. Please follow along these short little studies each day. They are not in depth studies and certainly not exhaustive on the subject. It has been a challenge and a blessing to myself to think of Bible verses for them. If you are blessed by them, please like and feel free to share them.

Search the Word Facebook Christmas Carols album

I also encourage you to share your favourite Christmas carols on Facebook in the 2 weeks leading up to Christmas. Why not fill Facebook with these beautiful songs about our Saviour?