PRAYER WORKS

person placing hands on bible

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Three prayers, three answers, by the three-in-one God.

First, when I was about three or four years old, I lived on the south side of Des Moines with my four siblings. They didn’t, but I contracted polio. My cousin lived down the street and she had to stay in an iron lung in the hospital.

Due to lack of finances, our family of seven lived in two buses on a vacant lot. One day, I was weak and couldn’t walk. My dad carried me. My mom took me to the doctor. I took medicine, and since it was summer, I slept outside on an army cot. My mom knew just what to do. She walked down the street, got my grandmother, Pearl Smith, and they together knelt by my bed under a star-lit sky and prayed to God for my healing. Soon I could walk and eventually entered kindergarten. Thank the Lord for healing.

Second, around 1998, after our children were grown and we had moved to Arizona, I was facing serious back surgery, a complicated thoracic procedure involving collapsing a lung at Barrow Neurological Institute and operating through my side rather than back.

Roland, my dear husband came home from church one Sunday prior to my surgery and told me about the message. Sometimes God uses unusual ways provide healing: mud on the eyes, etc. Roland believed God wanted him to wrap the two of us together under his blue and white prayer shawl and ask God for healing. I was so moved by this otherwise practical man’s suggestion; we had never done this before or since. Wrapped in the loving arms of my husband and our heavenly Father, Roland prayed for my up-coming surgery.

Yes, God answered. Recovery went well. Under the tent of God’s love, we thanked Him.

Third: as recent at 2017, my doctor read the results of an ultrasound on my leg and told me that I had a complete blockage. Further, if my let got red, hot, or changed I needed to go to the ER immediately. Yes, I could lose my leg.

Every day I prayed. Then, I called my church, Scottsdale Bible, and asked the pastor and elders to pray for me. I was so scared. They set up an appointment and about thirty of them gathered around me and prayed. I followed up with a visit to a specialist who ran another test and assured me that my leg was fine. Either the first test was wrong, or God answered prayer. I like to believe the latter.

Praise God for his healing touch…all three times!

Jesus, He cast out the spirits with his word, and healed all that were sick…Himself took our infirmities and bare our sicknesses (Matt. 8:16, 17).

Question: When did you last receive God’s healing, physical or otherwise? How did you feel about your miracle?

Posted in family, God, Healing, Judeo-Christian, Life Chages, Memories, Prayer, Scottsdale Bible Church, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Profanity Insanity

Do you have a pet word or phrase when you hit your thumb with the hammer? My sister-in-law, Gloria, used to say, “Oh, fudge.” I admit that I usually say, “Darn it!”

Today, a large number of people, even minors, use the “F” word, which I detest. There are so many good words to use, why pollute the air with profanity? To me, when a person chooses to use vulgarities, they show their lack of intelligence…lack of common curtesy…lack of consideration for others.

black corded microphone

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Yes, many people, even other than Christians, do not appreciate foul “F-word” utterings. Use a cuss jar and charge yourself a dollar for every offence, or put a rubber band around your wrist to snap when you offend, if necessary. Just don’t continue bad behavior even if the majority around you will cuss up a storm.

I’m for clear air. Let’s start with cleaning up potty  mouths that spew out a word that belongs in the dictionary but not in conversation.

Unless you’re on a diet, maybe “fudge” is a good “F-word” choice. What would you advise for clean speech? Try Psalm 19:14, “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.

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THANK YOU, GOD

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Des Moines, Iowa. The church where Effie got saved at age 13.

THANKSGIVING is a time for “giving thanks,” so that’s what I’ll do. Actually, I’m sharing with you my Personal Letter #100 that I wrote to God on March 13, 2018. It reads in part:

Dear GOD,

 

“Besides physical life, you have given me an abundant life through Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Thank you for forgiveness of my sin. My life is eternal, based on the promises of your Word (John 10:28). I shall never perish…I’ll just move to my new (forever) home in heaven. Thank you, Lord!

Listed below are a few ways you have blessed me (to name them all would be humanly impossible). I am thankful for:

  • My birth parents, siblings, husband, children, and grandchildren
  • Extended family and friends
  • Relationships
  • Born in America
  • Taken and sent to church
  • Pastors and churches teaching Truth
  • Education (The ability to read…especially the Bible) College Degrees
  • Various Jobs: Age 13 – 74
  • Travel: National and International
  • Gifts: Natural and Spiritual: Writing, Speaking, and Teaching
  • Health (despite surgeries) – Ability to walk
  • Provision of food and shelter above anything I ever dreamed
  • Peace and joy, even in difficult, trying times
  • Songs in the night
  • Answers to prayer/ Protection from harm, close calls
  • The Five Senses: Hearing, Sight, Taste, Touch, and Smell
  • Memory/Good Memories
  • Music/Art/ Nature: birds chirping, mountain ranges, meadows, flowers, trees
  • Thank you for putting me in a family with Jonathan and Jesse. The loneliness has subsided, and I don’t feel abandoned.

Lord, the list could go on forever.

In sincere gratitude and love, your child,

Effie-Alean (Groves) Gross

a.k.a. My New Name (which I don’t know yet)”

For what are you thankful? Send me one word or a list. HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

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SISTERS IN SIN

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SISTERS IN SIN

I find it rather cute that Mynita and I go many places together and are called, “The Sisters.” We’ve been close forever. (Note:  Mynita took back her last name “Anderson,” and I’m blonde now. We’ve each lost 30 pounds!)

Mynita Rubel & Effie Gross (Jan. 2016)
Mynita Rubel & Effie Gross (Jan. 2016)  Mynita is two years, two months and two days older than me. I am the baby of the family.  We stay out of trouble (most of the time) by going to church, the gym, and on vacation together. Ours is a very special family relationship. Lasting and loving. 

 

 

 

        Contrastly, take the biblical Aholah and Aholibah found in Ezekiel 23:1-49. Bible scholars have assigned the two sisters to represent Israel and Judah, one nation by birth from Sarah, the same mother. I believe that interpretation to be true, even to their punishment for idolatry.

However, since the Bible is a record of human experience, it seems fair to make connections relevant for today. Here’s what the biblical parable says about the sisters. The word of the LORD came to Ezekiel saying: two sisters were whores (KJV term) in Egypt. In their youth, they gave away their virginity. Aholah (Samaria) being the elder, and Aholibah (Jerusalem) her sister. God claimed them as his own. They had children, both sons and daughters.

Aholah doted on her lovers, playing the harlot with the desirable Assyrians who were clothed in blue, riding horses. She never left the whoredom of her youth; therefore, God delivered her into the hand of her lovers, the Assyrians.

The men who had discovered her nakedness, took her sons and daughters. They killed Aholah with the sword, executing judgment upon her. For her sinful life, she became famous among women.

When her sister, Aholibah, saw this, she became even more corrupt than Aholah in her inordinate love and whoredoms. Aholibah doted on the desirable, young Assyrian captains and rulers in their gorgeous uniforms. She was defiled, increasing her sin, “for when she saw men portrayed upon the wall, the images of the Chaldeans portrayed with vermilion” girdles upon their loins, wearing dyed turbans on their heads, looking like princes.

After seeing paintings of them on the wall, she sent them messages. The Babylonians came and defiled her in their bed of love. Polluted with them, her mind was alienated from them. So, she discovered her nakedness and whoredom; yet, she increased her whoredoms and relished in former days of her youth when she played the harlot in Egypt.

“Therefore, O Aholibah, thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will raise up thy lovers against thee…thou shall be laughed to scorn” (cf. Ezekiel 23:22-33).

CONSIDER: Pornography and lust played a part in the downfall of the biblical sisters. Truly, there is nothing new under the sun, as King Solomon wrote. For Christians: Don’t defile yourself and cause God’s blessings to be withheld. For Truth seekers: God forgives sin. Jesus told the woman caught in adultery, go and sin no more. In either case: ask for forgiveness and strength to follow the Lord in his holiness. Resist the devil and he will flee.

Lastly, make no mistake, my sister and I have nothing in common with the biblical sisters named above. Though imperfect, we love the Lord with whole hearts, and we love each other.

Questions: Did someone’s name come to mind who could benefit from this blog post?

Will you share these words with him or her?

Can you praise God for deliverance from sin?

May I pray for you?

Contact me through www.EffieGross.com. I am praying for you, dear reader!

 

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GRANDMA’S HAIR

One of my favorite short stories is “Bernice Bobs Her Hair,” by F. Scott Fitzgerald and published by the Saturday Evening Post in 1920. My mother was 10 at that time, and I’m not sure if she ever got a flapper hairstyle.

I’ve always loved long hair. When a salon stylist once cut my hair really short, I went home and cried for days. So, every stylist since that time has been given a threat…before we come to a complete understanding of how to measure inches on a ruler. Don’t get me wrong, I really like short hair on others, just not on me!

As I wrote on my website: http://www.EffieGross.com, I will be publishing on this blog some of my writings, especially the poetry. Today, I’m sharing a poem about my godly grandmother, Pearl (McNabb) Smith.

Have you every had a bad haircut? Did you ever give one? Anyone know about a “bowl cut” for boys? or a G.I. cut? Share your experience with me, especially if you like Fitzgerald’s short stories.

GRANDMA’S HAIR

They say older women shouldn’t wear long hair.

They say older women shouldn’t show gray.

They say…

Who are “they” anyway?

They, obviously, never saw my grandma remove hair

pins from braids or a bun.

They never watched her glory cascade

past frail shoulders.

They never saw the free-flowing locks tossed

from side-to-side like a weeping willow

in a gentle breeze.

They never saw her reflection in the mirror,

or heard her easy style. “Well, hush my mouth,”

Grandma used to say, untangling many a problem

and smoothing static in her hair and in the air.

They never smelled the sweet scent emitted

from her scalp as I placed a kiss there.

No, they never knew any of that, or learned

to count as Grandma brushed her 100 strokes.

But I did.

Grandma’s hair wasn’t bobbed, dyed, permed, or moussed.

It was long, gray, straight, and beautiful.

What do “they” know?

                              ~~Effie-Alean

 


 

Posted in Childhood, Effie, family, Family History, Hair Styles, Life Chages, Poetry, recommended reading, Short Stories, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

ROYALTY NO LESS

Saylorville Church Tea 6-21-2017 9-50-19 AMCoffee or tea? That was a familiar question when flying on most airlines 50 years ago. Today’s options are numerous, and some come with a price. For years, I gave up coffee altogether and opted only for tea.

These days, I like both coffee and tea in various forms: hot, iced, flavored, or plenty of cream. The only special occasion for me to indulge is waking up in the morning, but a High Tea or Royal Tea is a different matter. They’re special because you don’t get a paper cup at Starbucks or the drive-thru at Dutch Brothers.

In 1989, I was involved with women’s ministries at Saylorville Baptist Church in Des Moines, Iowa. We invited Princess Diana and Queen Elizabeth II to attend our up-coming High Tea. Our special invitations were uniquely designed with lace and ribbons. This was one of the replies:

I am commanded by The Queen to write and thank you for your invitation to attend a High Tea at your Church.

Although Her Majesty is unable to accept, she thought it was very kind of you to invite her.

It was on official stationery from Balmoral Castle and signed by “Lady-in-Waiting.

I’ll be volunteering at the Maricopa Public Library with my granddaughter, Ashlee, for a Royal Tea. We will help children with selecting and fitting crowns for this special occasion. Everyone should feel like royalty no less.

Last week, Christians remembered the “Crown of Thorns” Messiah Jesus wore at a very different kind of party. Dying on the cross, He was in the company of two thieves. One repented and was promised to be with Jesus in Paradise. Faithful believers are promised various crowns: crown of life, crown of glory, crown of righteousness…incorruptible.

close up of gate of buckingham palace

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I don’t know if I’ll wear a crown at the Royal Tea next week, but when I get to heaven, I’ll wear a crown, because God promised. Like the 24 elders who cast their crowns at Jesus’ feet, that’s what I want to do.

Jesus is “Royalty No Less.” You see, He paid a high price…His sinless life. He is King Jesus!

Do you have a story about a special occasion involving coffee, tea, or crowns? Let me and the other readers know (or you may be in hot water). God bless you, friends.

Posted in Etiquette, God, Jewish, Manners, Messianic, Royalty, Uncategorized | Tagged | 2 Comments