I’ve Been Dipped!

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I did not really understand the ceremony or grasp the full significance of what water baptism meant as I was baptized by sprinkling in the Episcopalian Religion at eight years old. Fast forward almost 40 years later and as a person that did not always walk with the Lord and now had much to be thankful for because of His Amazing Grace that saved a wretch like me, Baptism had become a great desire for me.

I did religion most of my life; one denomination after another, spending the majority of my adult life practicing Catholicism. My husband was a cradle Catholic and we married and baptized our children Catholic as well. When all the rituals became too much for us we left religion and the Catholic Church in 2006.
We desired something more and found that in a relationship with Jesus Christ. We chose to live and raise our children by a Biblical Worldview and no longer wanted to be defined by a religious denomination. As I read my Bible and walked closer with the Lord my desire only deepened to be Baptized as the Bible describes.

The Greek word Baptizmo – where we get Baptized Or Baptism from means “to dip.” So for me, I believe that immersion baptism is the type of Baptism the Bible is referencing. For me being baptized the “Real Way” meant being fully dipped, dunked, taking the full plunge.

After desiring this for the last nine years, I got the opportunity this past summer.
I also love that God arranged for it to all go down not in Texas, but across the world in Jerusalem, Israel in the famous Jordan River.

It was an amazing and very emotional experience. I also have it on DVD to watch over and over again! (They capture all the baptisms like those roller coaster ride pictures at amusement parks)

Every time I hear this song It resonates with me. Every time I can’t help but cry. I just can’t contain my emotions.

I encourage you all if you have not done so already to take the full plunge. Get Dipped!
Dip in deep and begin to experience something about the amazing “Living” Water! I am so glad I did! Now I am changed… Now I am stronger….~ XXOO Michelle Bollom

“Something In The Water” by Carrie Underwood

He said, “I’ve been where you’ve been before.
Down every hallway’s a slamming door.
No way out, no one to come and save me.
Wasting a life that the Good Lord gave me.

Then somebody said what I’m saying to you,
Opened my eyes and told me the truth.”
They said, “Just a little faith, it’ll all get better.”
So I followed that preacher man down to the river and now I’m changed
And now I’m stronger

There must’ve been something in the water
Oh, there must’ve been something in the water

Well, I heard what he said and I went on my way
Didn’t think about it for a couple of days
Then it hit me like a lightning late one night
I was all out of hope and all out of fight

Couldn’t fight back the tears so I fell on my knees
Saying, “God, if you’re there come and rescue me.”
Felt love pouring down from above
Got washed in the water, washed in the blood and now I’m changed
And now I’m stronger

There must be something in the water
Oh, there must be something in the water

And now I’m singing along to amazing grace
Can’t nobody wipe this smile off my face
Got joy in my heart, angels on my side
Thank God almighty, I saw the light
Gonna look ahead, no turning back
Live every day, give it all that I have
Trust in someone bigger than me
Ever since the day that I believed I am changed
And now I’m stronger

There must be something in the water (amazing grace)
Oh, there must be something in the water (how sweet the sound)
Oh, there must be something in the water (that saved a wretch)
Oh, there must be something in the water (like me)
Oh, yeah

I am changed (I once was lost)
Stronger (but now I’m found)
(was blind but now I see)

http://youtu.be/mH9kYn4L8TI

Forever His

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Tear-stained cheeks
And worn-out knees.
White-knuckled hands
And a heart that seeks.

A silent cry that speaks volumes
And a whimper that surrenders.
A shout that brings silence
And His promise she remembers.

A promise to forever keep as His, her…

Tear-stained cheeks
And worn-out knees.
White-knuckled hands
And a heart that seeks.

~ S. Gable 2014

Lionzbride

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I began ministering with my band in a Christian rehab in 1994 when it lost its funding and closed. Our contact got a job at a prison and asked if we’d like to come out and “Jam for The Lamb!”
The rest is history.

Lionzbride Ministry incorporated in 1999 with the State of Texas and is a tax exempt non-profit ministry also recognized by the IRS.

We minister in men’s and women’s prisons and over the years have been involved with inmate choirs, bands, drama teams, prayer teams… We’ve put on plays and musicals for units with inmate actors.

Currently we minister at a hospital prison once a month in the pods to critically ill male and female inmates, as well as, to female inmates, some who are pregnant and getting ready to give up their baby.

We recently put on a Day with Dad at a men’s maximum security prison. It was incredible! This was the first one at this unit. You can see all the pictures on our Facebook or through our website. We will be hosting another 1st time Day with Dad at another men’s max in 6/15.

We also recently began ministering in administrative segregation as well as to a new federally mandated step down program also to segregated inmates. This is like a prison inside a prison and not everyone is comfortable ministering to these individuals.

We hold regular church services to include worship and The Word.

I’m currently teaching a marriage and parenting class at a men’s max unit which is the first at this unit also. Soon there will be a marriage type retreat.

We bless the unit each Christmas with soap, shampoo, toothpaste, deodorant, and a candy bar. Children color the brown paper bags like a Christmas card. This is a huge blessing to them.

May God Bless you with His joy and Thanksgiving! He alone is worthy of all praise! ~Constance Carter

If you have questions, would like to get involved or want to contribute financially to any of these upcoming events, please contact Constance of Lionzbride Ministry at her website or facebook page.

http://www.lionzbride.com

https://m.facebook.com/profile.php?id=272809422730116&ref=bookmark

“Thank You”

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Before we dive into that turkey or ham or whatever else may tickle our fancy- let us all take a moment to think of all the things we are Thankful for. Just stop and take a deep breath and remember to enjoy all the little moments of today. No need to stress over the meal or shopping deals.

Let us remember to say Thank You for all the amazing people and things we are so richly blessed with.

Thank Him for the big & small-
Thank Him for it ALL!

Restored Ministries wants to Thank all of our followers and fans! We appreciate you ALL!

Have a Blessed Thanksgiving!

A little turkey day music to get you in a Thankful mood! ~ XXOO Michelle Bollom

Thank you for the summer
And thank you for the rain
And thank you for the pleasure
Thank you for the pain
Thank you for the flowers
That bloom in early may
And thank you for the winter
That washes fall away
I want to say thank you
Thank you for it all
Thank you for the deserts
Thank you for the trees
Thank you for the failures
And for the victories
Thank you for the pruning
That gives me room to grow
Thank you for the seasons
Where I learn to reap and sow
So come, let us worship
Let us release a joyful sound
Let us enter his presence
Let us all bow down

http://youtu.be/zhRTTNBAmqs

Are You Thirsty?

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Marlee, one of our family members who happens to be a cat will follow any of the upright walking members into the bathrooms, kitchen, and laundry room. It will be any room that has a sink with the potential of a quick sip of running water. She will be found there waiting for fresh running water. Forget her fresh bowl of water that is daily poured sitting next to her food bowl. It has to be fresh running water and sought after by her meows, pacing, jumping and pitiful pleas of “Pleazzzz, turn on the faucet!”.
These days God is just speaking to me through any and all sorts of crazy things. Sometimes they are random and weird. I am beginning to believe He knows how my mind works and meets me where I will pay attention and may actually pause and listen.

So He asks me the question, “Are you thirsty for running water?”.

Are you willing to follow Me around and ask me for every opportunity to receive fresh water that runs from and through Me.
Are you thirsty enough to plea for streams of living water?

So I look up in the Bible what He says about the matter.

Thank goodness for Google!!
Search

living fresh running water Bible
Go……..

First verse

John 7:38
New Living Translation
“Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.'”

Second one
Oh my!!! You can look up that one on your own!!! Leviticus 15:13
That’s another study within itself. Thank goodness for the New Covenant.

Third One and many more….

John 7:38 – He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.

Revelation 21:6 – And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.

John 4:14 – But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

John 4:13-15 – Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: (Read More…)

Isaiah 44:3 – For I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour my spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring:

Proverbs 5:15-20 – Drink waters out of thine own cistern, and running waters out of thine own well. (Read More…)

Revelation 22:17 – And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

Revelation 7:16-17 – They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. (Read More…)

Acts 2:38 – Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

John 7:37 – In the last day, that great [day] of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.

Jeremiah 2:13 – For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, [and] hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water.

Exodus 17:1-7 – And all the congregation of the children of Israel journeyed from the wilderness of Sin, after their journeys, according to the commandment of the LORD, and pitched in Rephidim: and [there was] no water for the people to drink. (Read More…)

Revelation 22:1 – And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.

1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

John 4:1-10 – When therefore the Lord knew how the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John, (Read More…)

Psalms 42:1-2 – (To the chief Musician, Maschil, for the sons of Korah.) As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. (Read More…)

Psalms 23:5 – Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

1 Kings 3:1-28 – And Solomon made affinity with Pharaoh king of Egypt, and took Pharaoh’s daughter, and brought her into the city of David, until he had made an end of building his own house, and the house of the LORD, and the wall of Jerusalem round about. (Read More…)

I am guessing this water theme is significant to God and has meaning to those who are thirsty.

Are you thirsty?
(Not the kind that our teens talk about!!! Where you need a person to complete you and are looking;
looking everywhere and anyone will do.)
But kind of????
Are we looking ?
Looking for that Someone who will complete us and make us whole again. Jesus will cleanse us and purify our hearts daily with fresh running water that flows from the Throne of God. (Rev 22:1)

We just have to follow Him around everywhere with running and sought after meows, pacing, jumping and pitiful pleas of “Pleazzzz, turn on the faucet!”.
Maybe not the meows, but rather the requests of something new and fresh every day.

Ask Him to turn the faucet on today and get ready to jump up and receive.

Faucet On,
Kelley Allison
John 4:14

Unwanted Houseguests

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Tis’ the season. OK, I’ll be brave enough to just say it. Yes, it’s that time of year when you get UNWANTED HOUSEGUESTS. It happened to me. They showed up unexpectedly a few weeks ago. That’s early by anyone’s standards of coming for the holidays. But I kicked them out! Yup! It felt GOOOOOOD! Let me tell you how and what happened:
A couple of weeks ago, my husband and I were in the house alone, but then, just as quickly, we weren’t. All of a sudden, this uninvited couple showed up at the door. They were sly and managed to slide in really quickly before we could get the door shut on them. I don’t think either my husband or myself intended or ever implied that they were welcome. They certainly didn’t call before and ask if they could come, we surely would have said a resounding no, but yet, there they sat on my couch, grinning.
Just like pushy in-laws sometimes do, they weren’t content to just BE at my house. They wanted more. They intended to move in and get comfortable, to stay awhile. As for us, we were too shocked at their boldness to tell them “No!” Not wanting to “put us out”, they pushed on in and insisted we just continue what we were already doing. My husband and I had been talking. He was catching me up on his week and I, him on some issues that were going on with one of our kids. I sat dumbfounded as they interrupted us and happily chimed in, helping twist the parenting issue into something bigger and much more ominous. One involving ultimatums and the angry words “always” and “never”. I was mad and confused as I sat on my side listening to them and thinking “Who do they think they are? What just happened here? How long are they staying? Can I boot them out now?!” I’ll bet by now you are wondering who they are- these unwanted houseguests of mine? Well, you will probably recognize them by the names Offense and Hurt Feelings.
Offense grew bolder and came to sit by my husband on the couch. The more they talked, the more they agreed and the stronger the bond between them grew. Hurt Feelings patted my shoulder, gave me a tissue and offered to listen to my side because I was, obviously, the injured party. Soon, my husband and I weren’t the cohesive unit, they were. He and Offense. Then, me and Hurt Feelings. The sympathy from them felt good…and the distance between me and my husband felt…right somehow. Neither my husband, nor I could understand what had just happened to drive the wedge so quickly, but our houseguests just smiled and immediately started making themselves more at home. They asked which room was theirs and began unpacking their junk.
BUT, THEN….
I was with some friends a few days later and heard Graham Cooke speak. He talked about refusing to accept someone as an enemy. A man had approached him with offense and enmity in his heart. Graham’s response to the man was shockingly Jesus-like. “No. Sorry. I’m not in the market for enemies. You can’t be my enemy unless I receive you as one.” What? Are you serious? We get to say that??? Yes! We do! We can!
I don’t know about you, but I seem to spend so much time on reacting to whatever the devil throws my way, via people I come in contact with. I feel like the little silver ball in a pinball machine some days. What should my response be to this person because they’ve said this? How do I get along with them when they are doing that? The list goes on. I am an introvert, by nature. When I take a verbal “hit” from someone, I get really quiet. I tend to spend a lot of time rehearsing and rehashing things in my head that are always better left alone. Thankfully, when I submit myself and my problems to Jesus, he helps me stop that cycle and find my voice. And, unlike what happened with my husband and our unwanted houseguests, the presence of Jesus’ voice in my home and in my conversation always brings peace. Jesus has given me the choice to just refuse to buy into or go along with whatever lie, scheme, plan or whomever the devil tries to send to hurt me. Jesus’ power is always greater. I can respond from the goodness of God and the constant presence of Emmanuel, God with us. Deep, cleansing breath here.
One of the questions I tried to mull over after hearing this new approach was: “How do I respond to this ugly situation with the sheer goodness of God?” So the first night, I concentrated on God’s goodness and how I could show that to my husband. Suddenly, it was easier to serve my husband in love without complaining and being hypocritical. I was determined as I tried to think of ways that I could go the extra mile to show him that I did not, would not, receive him as my enemy. It was easy with God’s help -kind of fun, even, when it started messing with his head. OK – I never said I was perfect…LOL.
As I put my foot down and stopped feeding Offense, he grew hungry and became angry and threatened to cause a scene. Yawn. Hurt Feelings got her feelings hurt (of course) at being ignored and threatened to leave. Excellent. Buh-Bye! I prayed for more help and Jesus provided Peace and Love Never Fails as my armed guard escorts to watch my unwanted guests pack their things and leave our house. As they left, they made one last grab at Peace, but Love Never Fails quickly overwhelmed them.
This season, you will have many opportunities to let these two thugs into your house. Be careful, they might show up using different aliases, such as “You Always” and “You Never”, but know them for what they are: Offense and Hurt Feelings. You have the choice. You don’t have to let them come in. If they’ve already wormed their way into your house, respond to them with the overwhelming goodness of God.
Please understand that I’m not saying don’t answer the doorbell when it rings this season. I’m just saying, look through the peephole first, say a prayer for wisdom, and then decide. OK, stop that! I saw you smiling! Yes, you! If it’s your in-laws, yes, you have to let them in! Really!

Whew! And it’s not even Thanksgiving yet! ~Debbie Bouckley

Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them. -Psalm 119:165

Heavenly wisdom centers on purity, peace, gentleness, deference, mercy, and other good fruits untainted by hypocrisy. The seed that flowers into righteousness will always be planted in peace by those who embrace peace. -James 3:17-18

You may think that the situation is hopeless, but God gives us more grace when we turn away from our own interests. That’s why Scripture says,God opposes the proud, but He pours out grace on the humble. So submit yourselves to the one true God and fight against the devil and his schemes.If you do, he will run away in failure. Come close to the one true God, and He will draw close to you. -James 4:6-8

But the Eternal’s goodness is not exclusive—it is offered freely to all. His mercy extends to all His creation. -Psalm 145:9

My children, you have come from God and have conquered these spirits because the One who lives within you is greater than the one in this world.- 1 John 4:4

The Thankful Challenge

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This time of year Facebook gets filled with people doing the Thankful Challenge. Each day for November people will post something they are Thankful for.

I have never done this challenge myself because I have made this practice a lifestyle change for me the last several years.
(oh how I wish my diet and exercise were as consistent!)

I read the book “1000 Gifts” by Ann Voskamp a few years back. I also saw a quote or post about what if we were only given today what we were Thankful for yesterday. I was out with my kiddos on a walk ( I recall this moment so vividly in my memories) I asked my twins to name 10 things they were Thankful for. It seemed so easy but instead it was hard. We could name a few but getting to 10 proved more challenging. At first we thought they had to be really big things but then we started listing … Thank You God for nice weather, and for time together, and for our health, and for this walk, and for good shoes, and sunshine, and birds…. We kept listing on and on things big and small we were Thankful for. So that year for Christmas I bought us all spiral notebooks and new pens. We started listing our Daily 10 Thankful’s into our journals. When we are away from home we do it in the car or wherever we are. We go around listing our Thankful’s. I am not quite sure how or when it happened but our family atmosphere shifted. Our hearts began to expand and we could recognize all the wonderful things big and small that we are so blessed with each day. I have filled almost 4 journals now. I keep listing them each day. I challenge you to get yourself, your children, your friends and love ones, a journal. Start your own practice of Thankfulness. It will enlarge your heart and transform your life. ~ XXOO Michelle Bollom

Giving thanks always for all things to God and the Father, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; ~ Ephesians 5:20 WBT

O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever! ~ Psalm 118:1 AMP

And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.~ Colossians 3:15 NLT

Come In

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After a recent bout with food poisoning and being the sickest I can ever remember, this song really resonated with me. This version of the song is just 2 minutes and 10 seconds long. The song is “Come In” by Heather Clark – You can search for an upbeat longer version too that is good, but the simple short and sweet version here is my favorite.

The lyrics to this spontaneous version are on the video link.

I was so sick and I was asking God, What do you want to be for me that you couldn’t be before this happened? (Something I am learning in my study of Brilliant Thinking by Graham Cooke)
I had asked over and over and not really got the answer. It started Sunday night and rolled on into Tuesday before I was getting any better. Tuesday this song shuffled and I put it on repeat as the words “Total Abandonment” kept resonating with me.

So I looked up the definition.

This is the definition of Abandonment-
The self-surrender to an outside influence.
Abandon; careless freedom or ease; surrender to one’s emotions.

Wow! God was getting my attention. As I laid so weak I could barely move with my head in a bucket for hours upon hours to the point of almost dehydration… I was powerless. I could not help but be surrendered to whatever was causing me so much sickness. I then started thinking about how many times we surrender to our emotions? How many times do we surrender to pressures or to outside influences that harm us instead of uplift us? How many times do we fuss and fume when mishaps or disappointments come our way? I know for me, far too many. Our Total Abandonment, like the definition says; self-surrender, but instead of to outside influences, we always need to make sure it is to the Inside Influence. Total Abandonment to The Holy Spirit.

Thankfully we simply just have to “Come In” to His presence. When we do Come In, we experience rest, refreshment, restoration, resolution, peace and healing. Maybe even some great life lessons too if we are open to them.

When we can find the God lessons in ALL of life’s moments, the good and the not so good, we start to live the upgraded restored life that God intended for us. We need to abandon all the hectic stressful stuff and choose to be fully abandoned to Christ. There we find true freedom, not careless freedom. There we find His perfect rest.

Won’t you Come In? Come In to His Presence… Come In to meet the King… Come In with Total Abandonment. He is waiting. XXOO~Michelle Bollom

The Dream

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The dream,
Though seemingly lifeless,
Still has a pulse.
The desire,
Though hidden in the shadows,
Remains.
The strength
Though shaken,
Still stands.
The confidence,
Though bruised,
Waits to reappear.
The dream,
Though oppressed,
Still lives,
For the never-ending need for purpose
Is the driving force of its survival.

~ S. Gable 2014

Grace

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I don’t mince words, but I do believe in a grace-filled delivery. That’s because the Lord has shown such extreme grace to me.
While I am so very blessed to have such a sweet family; life has not always been so abundant. As a teenager and young adult, I was clueless about God, specifically His plan for sexuality and relationships. As a result, I became sexually active as a young teen and suffered the baggage that goes along with that lifestyle.
At 20 years old, I experienced an unplanned pregnancy, followed by a rushed marriage and painful divorce. As a single mom at 22 years of age, I finally realized something: God is a loving, forgiving God, and His commandments and standards are for my protection – and yours.
Now married to the love of my life and with an imperfect but precious family, I am devoted to helping others see the beauty in biblical instructions and realities. This includes God’s plan for sexuality and family as well the daily challenges and thrills of living a life of faith.
My passion for speaking began in 2001 while serving alongside my husband in student ministry. In 2009, I authored a parent book, Choosing to Wait, followed by a companion book for teens, Why Wait?, and soon began availing my materials and presentations to local churches and organizations. Since that time . . .
I have facilitated over 100 presentations, and in many cases, served as the keynote speaker.
I have spoken at churches of varying denominations such as Baptist, Lutheran, Methodist, and community churches. I have also spoken in a variety of school settings, including private and public schools, and made presentations at community gatherings such as PTA meetings and pregnancy help centers.
I have appeared as a guest multiple times on the 700 Clubtelevision show and also on Pure Passion TV. I have been featured on numerous radio shows, including Houston’s KSBJ radio station, and my articles have appeared in periodicals such as Focus On the Family’s Thriving Magazine.
All that said, I love Jesus, love people, and welcome opportunities to serve others with the gifts and passions God has given me.
~ Blessings to you, Laura Gallier

Laura Gallier is a seasoned speaker and author known for her insightful presentations and resources on the topic of sex-related values and romantic relationships. She also addresses broader issues surrounding the faith-filled life and is passionate about providing down-to-earth explanations for some of the most frequently misunderstood notions about God and the Christian life.
Laura recently ventured beyond the world of non-fiction and released a riveting new novel, The Delusion. Plans are underway to bring the thrilling story to the big screen!
Watch the Delusion teaser here:

You can purchase books or Connect with Laura @ http://www.lauragallier.com/