3 weeks ago
“Nooooo, go away, you can’t come in!” I implored my sister, Colette.
“How come? What’s the huge secret?” she asked.
“It is a secret and don’t you dare open my door!”
“Well, fine, I’ve got my own secrets too.” She replied walking across to her room, loudly closing the door.
“Hey you two, I need a little help out here.” Mom called from the kitchen.
I quickly stuffed the doll bed I was making into a drawer. I had used an oatmeal box cut in half lengthwise. Carefully lining it with left over material, I made a little mattress stuffed with cotton. I planned to use my best hanky for a little blanket. This was Christmas for my sister and Nancy, her favorite 8 inch tall Ginny doll.
Dad was an electrician. The TV was on the blink and had been sitting in the basement for months waiting for him to fix it. I personally thought he didn’t care much for TV. Well, the good thing was it gave us more time to be creative. This was good, because money was scarce.
I hurried to the kitchen to help mom. By now we were used to the orange crate cupboards. The house was new but we bought it before it was finished. My Dad worked on it evenings and weekends. We had orange crates, painted and with cute curtains instead of doors, for four years before he had the time and money to make real cabinets.
“Girls, would you like to put some of your allowance towards your dad’s gift? He’d love to get a Jacob’s chuck for his drill.” Mom mentioned to us.
Lately that was all Dad talked about. Looking back I realized it cost hardly anything but was something we girls could help buy and feel proud to present our dad on Christmas.
“Mom, do you still want to get that Electrolux vacuum, the hose on the old one cracked clear through yesterday, more dust went out than in.” I said, thinking how all she’d hinted about for months was that vacuum.
“Oh, I sure hope so.” She said with a twinkle in her eyes.
The doorbell rang, it was Mr Stopple from Stopple Feed and Seed bringing a huge box of delicious apples that Grandpa sent us for Christmas.
Grandpa always seemed pleased, as pleased as his stoic German self could emote, to get home canned goodies and baked goods from us each year. We had a big garden out back, though we lived in the city. Even Inky, the cat had a job to keep the birds off the raspberry bushes. Then we canned and freezer packed produce in the summer heat for weeks. I guess the watermelon pickles, green beans and beets were a gift of love to Grandpa.
In just a few more days it would be Christmas. Dad pulled us aside and swore us to secrecy. He showed us a little Electolux savings bank – it looked just like the vacuum mom wanted. He planned to wrap it…..
Christmas Eve came, Grandpa was there with us. He passed out little envelopes. Colette and I got five dollars each and that was a big deal back in the 1950s. Dad wouldn’t let us see what his contained. Mom showed us later that she got a fifty dollar check. Somehow after Christmas mom took my sis and me shopping. We got a pair of shoes, underwear, a sweater and a new dress! Wonder where her fifty dollars went?
It wasn’t until years later that we found out Grandpa gave Dad a check which covered the mortgage on our modest home for the year. I wonder how many hours of “lawyering” he had to do to earn that. He knew that the folks were paying off doctor bills from my sister’s polio and 9 months in the hospital.
It was Christmas Day! I grabbed the box Colette handed me.
“Colette! When did you do this?” Inside was a bracelet she had made. She used her favorite little heart she’d won at the fair. She made that, just for me and gave me the heart!
Dad gave mom the bank. She looked pretty disappointed when he told her she could save for her Electrolux.
Then he said, ”Ah, Ma, I have one more thing.” From the other room we heard a vacuum turn on.
You just wouldn’t believe the smile on mom’s face as she threw her arms around Dad hugging him close.
(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with proper credits.
Have you ever awakened with your heart pounding, looking around in a panic or with heavy feelings that things are not right? Have you ever been really upset and then so relieved to figure out that you were asleep and now you are awake and what you were dreaming about is not real. Maybe it is time to go to the bathroom, whew.
I was having nightmares and the Lord took me through a process. I was reminded of how Jesus faced temptation by the enemy and how he deals with it. He always used the Word of the Lord to make the enemy stop. “It is written….”
Jesus said to him, “It is written again, ‘You shall not tempt the LORD your God.’”
Matthew 4:6-8 (in Context) Matthew 4 (Whole Chapter) NKJV
Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.’”
I used the above idea out loud in prayer before quoting some scriptures before bedtime. NKJV
and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. NKJV
[ The Humbled and Exalted Christ ] Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus. NKJV
I prayed that the mind of Christ was in me, whether awake or asleep, and that He was guarding my mind and basically told the enemy he had no right to be there – some other scriptures I quoted were:
[ Free from Indwelling Sin ] There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. NKJV
2 Timothy 1:7
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind
Lastly, I prayed the scripture below and reaffirmed that the mind of Christ was in me and the enemy had no place and I was trusting Jesus to do the rest. NKJV
[ Meditate on These Things ] Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. NKJV
I was dreaming about people I had wronged before coming to the Lord. I had asked forgiveness, or in some cases was no longer able to contact with the person. The enemy was beating me over the head with condemnation and I would wake up feeling totally condemned. After praying the above, if I had a dream I would wake up and pray for the salvation of those I had nightmares about. It all stopped really quickly.
Pray about this and see what the Lord opens up for you.
Lord Jesus, I pray that you would be with my sister/brother in a most mighty way. That you would give her/him peace and sweet dreams. We bind the enemy in the most mighty name of Jesus and by the blood shed for us at Calvary. Your mind is in us, while we are awake and asleep. Lord we love you. Please set us free from the torment of the enemy.
I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; For You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety. NKJV
(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with proper credits.