Linda's Cozy Mysteries

Growing Up Haunted, Hour-Long Special Radio Show

Friday, July 24, 2009

Change, it is a comin'

How do you feel about change? Is it good, bad or otherwise? Regardless of how we feel about change as individuals, it is a part of life.

Recently, I had a chance to discover this for myself. My mom was visiting earlier this summer, and I realized that she was changing. Not anything catastrophic, just little things. She's a little more forgetful than she used to be, a little more confused. At times, I felt that I was being the parent to her. Mom and I have had our moments of strife and disagreement, but we've always been close. Now I felt our relationship changing a little bit. I wasn't comfortable with this change at all. "Why do I have to act like the parent?" I thought. "She's the parent, not me!"

Role reversals are not comfortable, but then change is often challenging. This summer, I've realized that my life may not look like my mom's. Since I've been a little girl, when I've thought about the future, I always envisioned my life being like my mothers'. I'd get married around twenty-five, have kids in my early thirties, Purchase my dream house around forty, and then my children and grandchildren would flock to our home every year (or every other year) at Christmas. Life would revolve around church, kids, and maybe a few hobbies, like painting.

As I've become older, that dream has started to fade a little, crumble around the edges. Yes, I was married around 25, kids early 30s, but other things haven't worked out exactly as I planned. I finally realized that my life isn't necessarily destined to be a carbon copy of my parents. God may have something completely different in store.

Just last week, I was struggling with changes. Then I remembered 1 Corinthians 13:12 "Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known." As I turned the pages of my bible, I realized that I HAD been "looking thru a glass darkly". I was so focused on the difficulties of the here and now, that I was completely missing the big picture. So what if my husband and I don't buy a dream house just like my parents? So what if I'm not the amazing artist my mother is. God has a plan for me. His plan is not the same as my mother's or brother's or my friends. So if I see them achieve something that I have dreamed for myself or my children, I don't need to fret, or be jealous. The Lord is a good God. A righteous God. And He cares for us.

What a revelation! It may have been obvious to all of you out there, but I was just realizing, God has a whole plan for our lives.

It's like a beautiful tapestry, where the strands of pain and suffering are woven into the whole. The individual threads may look scrawny and ugly by themselves, but when they are woven into the tapestry they add a depth and beauty that wasn't previously there.

When I look at my current struggles, or my pain,I'm seeing a cloudy image, a confused reflection. At the end of my life, or maybe in heaven, I will see clearly that God had a plan all along.

Join me in praising God for His goodness to us, and that one day we WILL see Him face to face and understand His plan for us.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

The Wall of Dead Animals--by Linda Kozar

One weekend, on the way to Dannelle's parent's church in Victoria, Texas, four of us stopped for a bite at a BBQ place along the way. It looked like a perfectly normal place from the outside, but as soon as we stepped inside, I saw the Wall of Dead Animals!

Talk about an ice-breaker. Although the four of us, Karen Mayer Cunningham, Kate Young, Dannelle Woody and me (Linda Kozar) didn't need an ice breaker, especially with Karen and her jokes (hehe). Anyway, we were sort of whooper-jawed by the sight of so much extreme taxidermy in one room. And later, I got to thinking. . .

Why were we so taken back by the sight of all those dead stuffed animals when there are spiritually dead people who walk among us every day? This may come as a shock to you, but people who don't know the Lord are dead spiritually. We work with them, go to school--our kids are in sports together. They're in our neighborhood, even our church! YOU might even be one of them.

This week, I challenge you to look around at all the people around you who need to hear about Jesus and truly see them. Look beyond the pleasant facades and see the deep need, how they sorrow and struggle, the pain behind the smiles and the loneliness. . . People need Jesus desperately, but don't know Him or don't know anything about Him. Some have never set foot in a church.

Or, take a look at your own life. Have you lived a God-honoring life? Tried different ways to God, or even worshipped different Gods, but have been unfulfilled? You may have tried everything else life has to offer, drugs, alcohol, etc. or every weird and wacky religion out there except for Jesus. You stopped short when it came to Jesus. You tried everything else without blinking an eye. Why?

After you've looked around and seen the need--what next? You tell them. Tell them about Jesus. In a real way. Not a condescending or cliche' way. But real. Friend to friend. Love people like Jesus loves people. Love them enough to care what happens to them. Love them enough to risk rejection or persecution. Love them in spite of what they say. Love them enough to tell the absolute truth--that Jesus is Lord.

Acts 16:31 ". . .Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house."

Here's a simple sinner's prayer:

Dear Jesus, I need You. I know I'm a sinner. Please forgive me of all my sins against You. I don't want to live for my flesh, I want to live for You. I want to be one of Your saints and for You to write my name in Your Lamb's Book of life. Come into my heart right now Lord Jesus and fill my life with more and more of You. I get off the throne of my life and ask You to sit on that throne instead, where You rightfully belong. Amen.

I want to hear from you! When you lead someone to Christ, I want to do the Snoopy dance with you! So leave a comment please.

If any of you are interested in seeing the wall of dead animals for inspiration, the address is below (and those people cook up some killer BBQ too) Yummers.

Mikesea's BBQ
4225 Hwy. 59 and Blue Creek Road, El Campo, TX
Phone: (979)-543-8252 or 1-800-388-2552