February 2012

 By Gail Morris  



Gail Morris has been writing extensively since 1997. She completed a master’s degree in nursing at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and practiced in medicine for more than 20 years. Morris has published medical articles in peer-reviewed journals and now writes for various online publications and freelances for Internet marketers.


Hula hoops have changed dramatically since they were first released in the United States in 1958. The originals started a fad that saw manufacturers sell more 100 million hoops in two years. According to Spinning Hoop, the sport has evolved, and is now a variety of competitions around the world, including a world championship. The sport does not require you to purchase lots of equipment; you can do it almost anywhere — and you can make a hula hoop at home for less than $5.




John Parnell, also known as Hoop Guy, teaches and performs using hula hoops. He stresses the holistic nature of hooping, noting that many people find it helps lift their mood. In a 2009 interview in Britain’s “Telegraph” newspaper, Parnell said, “Not many people appreciate that the brain works better when given physical and spatial skills challenges as well as ordinary mental stimulation.”


Core Strength


Core muscles help to support the body in the standing position, protect the abdominal organs, and shield the back. The body motion required to keep a hula hoop moving helps to improve the tone and strength of the core muscles. Mayo Clinic physician Edward Laskowski described the movements required to hoop: Holding the hoop against the back and slightly above the waist, put one foot ahead of the other and push the hoop around the waist. By shifting weight back and forth from one foot to the other, the hoop will continue to move, working muscles throughout the core.


Weight Loss


Hula hoop exercises are a solid addition to any weight-loss program. To burn calories, the body must increase oxygen use and burn fat. The heart rate must reach between 65-85% of a maximum rate to get into the fat burning zone, Ron Klint writes for Hooping, adding that the motion and exertion will ultimately result in weight loss and toned inches. The more time you spend hooping, the more oxygen you will use, and the more fat you will burn. Thus, the hula hoop you choose for exercise should be of a size and weight that will allow you to work for the longest period of time possible. A smaller and lighter hoop will require more energy and yield a better aerobic workout, while a heavier hoop will allow the user to work for longer periods of time, and reach the fat-burning zone.


Deb’s note~ I made my own hula hoops for around $7.00 each…..(see picture above). I am really really enjoying hooping! It’s not hard…..it’s relaxing in fact….just put on some nice music and you are off and hooping!

In His Grip~

Have I mentioned how much I love Pinterest? No? Not yet? Well…….I do! I posted a couple blog entries last week about some of my favorite Pinterest pins……and promised more……here is one I had fun with today! LOVE PINTEREST!


The *Tea Bags* below are simply sugar cookies dipped in melted chocolate. I embellished them with the pink string and a faux tag from my papercraft supply…….see my new dishes? I was the blessed recipient of Mom Wells’ Desert Rose dishes after she moved into the retirement home…..love showing these off! Now…..off to set some tea time dates…..



Joyfully In His Grip~

A poem for my SPECIAL Valentine:


Our Romance~


Twas the night before Sunday

When all through the bar

Oregonians were dancing

Some near, some far


When what to my wandering eyes should appear

A handsome young Oregonian

Buying a beer


Our love story started

Right there, right then

Joy Unexplainable

Least not by pen


If I had your attention

For a lifetime or so

I could tell you about the man

I’ve come to know


He is the best husband

Now the best dad

I am living the life

I wish all could have


Years later

We stroll hand in hand

Thanking the Lord

For His Perfect Plan



Together…In HIs Grip


Hey Ladies!


Just a quick note to say hello to all of you and let you know I’ve been praying for each of you! thanks again for another really wonderful night at your house last Friday :) I always come away from my time with you girls refreshed and renewed! Thank you thank you!


As promised…..here is Pastor JD Farag’s weekly prophecy update :) You will hear a few things that sound familiar as we touched on some of the Syria news on Friday night….pay close attention to his take on it…..God has blessed him with some keen insight concerning the prophecies that are lining up and being fulfilled right now in the Middle East….enjoy!



Here is another resource link to more studies much like the one we went through on Friday night in regards to the Jewish Wedding Traditions and the similarities to the Rapture of the Church….this is a wonderful site! Be sure to click through all of the categories on the left side menu when you get to the home page….I am sure you will find something that piques your interests!


The Bridal Covenant


For those of you that may have missed my first post to all of you last week….you can find it here. There are several links to sites I use on a daily basis……for the serious prophecy student….it will keep you busy for weeks ;)


And finally…….don’t forget this weeks assignment! Ok……there is no grade for this assignment…..but alas…..let’s all try to bring ONE headline or news article to our Friday Night meeting and see how it squares up against the Bible….we are learning how to recognize the signs of the times we now live in……we are that generation ladies! TIP: keep in mind what we’ve already discussed about some of the major obvious signs….IE: Israel, Middle East, Global relations concerning countries, knowledge, weather, condition of mans hearts toward one another…toward God. Global Economy……to name a few…..


I can’t wait to see you all this Friday should the Lord allow! If not…I’ll see you all in the air!


Happily In His Grip~


131) Permission to slow down

131) musical gifts in other members of the family of faith

132) Ears to hear….Thank You, Thank You Lord for ears to hear.

133) Eyes to see…..Thank You Father for eyes to see things in the spirit…….this is truly new to me and I appreciate it so much.

134) Brothers and sisters who love You as much as I do.

135) The presence of the Lord

136) A wheelbarrow tire that is fixed and full of air

137) My friend Nancy’s warm smile

138) A wood source for our wood stove

139) the joy I experienced in serving my husband today

140) Joe, our gas man…..he is a believer and it is so wonderful to get gas from his station…..he oozes with the joy of the Lord

141) The revival I am reading about that is taking place around the world right now…..I know the Lord is bringing in the full number of the gentiles!

142) Fruit Smoothies

143) Rain clouds…….

144) My kid sister, Sherri :~}

145) The daffodil blades that have poked up through the soil in our flower beds

146) Azure Food Co-Op

147) Our Pastor and online shephard…Jon Courson

148) Spiritually hungry girls at the Harriett House….so thankful for those ladies….

149) Our grandson Jonas…..what a kid!

150) Good books

Thankfully in His Grip~


JOHN 6:64-71


64 “…there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who would betray Him.
65 And He said, “Therefore I have said to you that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted to him by My Father.”
66 From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more.
67 Then Jesus said to the twelve, “Do you also want to go away?”
68 But Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.
69 “Also we have come to believe and know that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
70 Jesus answered them, “Did I not choose you, the twelve, and one of you is a devil?”
71 He spoke of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, for it was he who would betray Him, being one of the twelve.


I was stunned to read in verse 66 that some of them walked away from Him! I have had need of His drawing me back over and over again but it caught me off guard to learn that those who walked with Him, saw His miracles and heard His words…..lived with Him…..experienced Him in the flesh would walk away.


Jesus didn’t plead with those who left. He didn’t say, “let me explain further.” He neither ran after them nor reasoned with them because He knew they could not understand unless the Father had drawn them.


Sometimes we spend hours talking and days dialoguing when we should be following the example of Jesus~ realizing that unless the Father is drawing, no one can come. I sense such a relaxed-ness in Jesus’ ministry. Not striving, not struggling, not straining to persuade, He simply shared the truth, knowing the Spirit would give application in the hearts of those the Father had drawn.


Dear Lord~ Thank you for showing me the truth in this passage today. I ask that you help me drink deeply of this truth and teach me to follow your example while I am sharing Your truths……help me hold those I love with a very loose grip when I share…knowing that the seed I sow will fall into soil that you have prepared……In Jesus Name Amen



Safely In His Grip

Yes!! I heart Pinterest!!!


After leaving facebook I figured I’d have a great deal of time on my hands so what did I do?? Trotted straight over to Pinterest……..hmmmm…….


Well…..I can’t say I am sorry! I’ve discovered so many great ideas and I want to share them here! It’s hard to pick my favorite….or even my top 10 so I will start with my current favorites tonight :)




I love to find different ways to tell my husband *I Love You*…..in the past I’ve sent cards in his lunch to work with him…..I’ve left messages on his bathroom mirror with a dry erase pen for him to wake up to…..now……drum roll please…..he has his own personal message board on the counter in the kitchen that I can write love notes to him any time of the day or night! It’s a simple 5×7 picture frame with some nice printed paper behind the glass…..and a dry erase pen works perfect to keep fresh messages flowing his way! He tells me he loves it…….I know he does because it’s the first thing he glances at when he comes home from work and the first thing he looks at in the morning when he wakes up. It’s a pleasure for me to know I am putting a spring in his step each day……now….if only I could learn to use a camera……I wonder if Pinterest could help me with that….???????





I am working hard at getting healthier….eating healthier……getting fit. I am also a VERY visual person and charting successes has always been super helpful to keep me motivated and on track. I also hate…..and I mean HATE bathroom scales……until last Oct., I hadn’t stepped on one in nearly two years. I’ve heard they make you cry….I believe it. I found something on Pinterest that has changed all of that for me! Now….I can hardly wait until weigh day!! Two small globe vases, tied with pretty ribbon…..and the same number of glass decorator stones as the number of pounds I want to lose. Now each weigh day I get to transfer the number of pounds (stones) from the *to go* jar to the *pounds lost* jar! No…..really……check it out! :)



There’s more!! But not tonight……another day…..when my camera isn’t so fussy…..


If you haven’t joined Pinterest…….you should! It’s a lot of fun!!


Joyfully In His Grip~

Again today…..my awareness of my condition before the throne of God is glaring…..it seems as if I might have had enough of Him to immunize me into thinking *all might be well*…….


Ecclesiastes 1:8 ~ For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increases knowledge increases sorrow.



Have I become a true *good legalist*? Generally good….at least enough for folks to notice…….uugghhh…..sick….:(


I know for fact….that kind of religion doesn’t work…..I’ve been caught in it before…only to experience a decline in my walk with Him and my faith as well. It’s relationship WITH Him that I need and long for……


I am grateful today that He woke me up…..that He causes me to thirst…..to hunger for more of Him. But wait…..the closer I seem to get to the cross….the LIGHT……the more visible my stains become. My own wretchedness is glaring! The gap between where I am and God’s Holiness is widening! Not closing like I had thought……



I’ve broken His heart so many times….and while it saddens me to the point of brokeness….I am grateful for eyes that can now see the blackness of my own heart…..that understands a little more today…..my HUGE need of a Savior…..for being rescued by a Holy God.


This awareness keeps me coming to him….keeps me aware of my need for Him to continually rescue me….to change me…..from glory to glory…..


Gratefully In His Grip~

Can ancient prophecies about Israel be true? Is the Bible true or relevant today? I am certain that I couldn’t count how many times I’ve heard prophecy Scholars state that Israel is the Lord’s *Super Sign* as an indicator of how things will look and what will be happening just before He returns for His church…..the following video was a joy to watch and my heart about burst with love for the Lord after watching it…..enjoy!



In His Faithful Grip~


Acts 14:8a In Lystra there sat a man crippled in his feet…


Thoughts for Today:


We know from these opening words: “In Lystra there sat a man crippled in his feet…” that a healing is going to happen. Why? Because there are numerous scenes in the Bible similar to this one when a cripple is healed or a lame person walks. Have you ever wondered why the Lord uses this particular illustration so frequently? I believe it is because the Lord is telling us in the form of a story that life without Jesus is like going through life, “crippled in [your] feet.”


I was speaking with a young man recently who was having difficulty in his marriage. The more I listened the more I realized the problem wasn’t his wife, the pressure of finances, or his children — those were convenient excuses. The real problem was his ‘crippled’ thought process. As we talked further about what was wrong he asked me, “How can I fix myself? Should I get counseling?” I told him Christian counseling would help a lot, but the only real solution is Jesus. He thought about that for a moment, and said “I already am a Christian, I have already prayed about this, I have already given my marriage to Jesus, and still I’m in trouble. Maybe I need something else.”


Now be honest with yourself, have you ever felt that way before: “Jesus just isn’t working, maybe I need something else?” Too often we look to someone or something else to fix us, when we should be looking inside — to Christ in us — as Paul will say — “our hope of glory.” We know we are all born with sin and if sin is left unchecked in our lives it will cripple us. Sin not only affects the emotional areas of our lives but also infects every relationship we have (marriage included), and activity we become involved in (work, sports, ministry, etc). It’s important to recognize that just because you are a Christian doesn’t mean you don’t sin anymore; rather it means you are forgiven. The real difference is you don’t have to be controlled by sin any longer — we have a choice. So what are you choosing? If you are a Christian you are fortunate because Christ’s death rendered sin powerless over you — however this is where most Christian’s fail in their battle against sin, they ! don’t replace the sin with it’s opposite.


Questions to ponder~


Here’s a partial list of sin. Take a moment and replace the negative emotion with a positive one (I’ve done the first for you as an example):

* Envy — replaced with: doing the best I can with the abilities God gave me.

* Greed — replaced with: __________________________________.

* Malice — replaced with: _________________________________.

* Lust — replaced with: ___________________________________.

* Anger — replaced with: __________________________________.

* Pride — replaced with: __________________________________.

Modern psychology focuses on why we feel the way we do. The Bible answers this question simply and exhaustively — sin. Jesus is the answer, but the choice remains yours. The Lord has given us a road map through His Word (the Bible) and His example to peace, contentment, and a full life. What will your choice be?



Pocket Devotions~


In His Grip~

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