"What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost, until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, 'Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!'"

Luke 15:4-6

May 27, 2015


A lot of us have had rain, rain, and more rain here lately! We've had so much over the past month or so that the ground is absolutely saturated, so that anytime it rains now, it pools on top of the ground and just remains there. The past three weeks, I've had to mow with with standing water in our yard.

To make matters worse, we've had big, fat worms all over the yard and inside our garage. We have to watch where we step when walking through our garage, following a rain, because there assuredly will be 6-8 inch worms in our path.

Yet that isn't the worst of it. Our dog -- our sweet, cute, little Sammie -- seems to go on a worm hunt each time we take him outside to potty. When finding them, he then will put the side of his head down on top of the nasty worm, then will roll in the wet, soggy grass. We can stay right beside him, but there have been times when he's down rolling before we can stop him. For some odd reason, he seems to find joy in the nastiness; which I suppose is what dogs do.

This afternoon I wasn't feeling well. I came back from spending Memorial Day with family in Missouri feeling as if someone had poured pollen inside my throat. Then this morning, I woke up achy, coughing, with chest congestion, and a fever. I really didn't feel up to doing much all day. But duty calls, so I took Sammie out to take care of business. We were walking back to the house, and I apparently wasn't paying as close attention as I should have been. Before I knew it, Sammie was down on the ground, rolling in the soggy, wet mess; I'm sure on top of a stinky worm.

When we came inside, I knew he was stinky so I tried brushing him, then tried wiping him off with a wet cloth. It didn't get rid of the stinky odor! Much to my aggravation, I had to get up and give him a bath. That was the last thing I wanted to do! But Sammie was determined to sit in the chair with me, and I couldn't handle the smell. He evidently didn't smell himself and realize how bad he stank.

When we try to live for the Lord, yet hold onto the sin of the world, there will be a stench. We may think we're hiding it, and no one will ever know about our secret sin, but sin leaves a stench; not only to those who are living godly lives, but to God. Sometimes we may become so accustomed to our sin that we no longer notice it, therefore, think no one else will either.

On the other hand, those who are living lives pleasing to God are a sweet smelling aroma to Him.

2 Corinthians 2:15 (NLT) says, "Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by those who are perishing."

Sammie's fragrance didn't bother him, because he was doing what dogs do. But to me, it was disgusting.

When we are living our lives according to the Word of God, they will be a fragrance that smells like Jesus, rising up to God. Other believers will see Jesus in our lives and it will be a sweet fragrance to them. But to those who are perishing and refusing salvation, they will often become offended by the Christ-like fragrance, because it makes the stench of their sin smell stronger.

May we all choose to allow Jesus to be Lord of our lives. May our lives be a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. I cannot think of anything more refreshing and pleasing to God!


I've heard quite a few people say that "they can honestly say they have no regrets." I understand they admit they have made mistakes, but the mistakes they've made helped shape them into the wonderful person they are now. But it's also a way of saying they would be glad to make the same mistakes they made before.

It would be great if we could each live our lives with no mistakes to regret. But that never truly happens. There is a danger of letting our regrets overcome us, and get so consumed that we make one mistake after another, maybe the same kind of mistake; maybe others. It seems like the general public and news media love to push someone to that point, or beyond it.

But when people refuse to feel any remorse, they may give themselves permission to make the same mistake again and again. Regret and remorse are a good thing, designed to keep us on the right path. But as with most things, it should be in the right moderation.


Homemade Salsa

28 ounce can crushed tomatoes

10 cilantro leaves

1/2 teaspoon salt

7 jalapeno slices (use fresh or canned)

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

2 tablespoons chopped onion

Combine all ingredients in a food processor until blended to your likeness.


I have recently started using essential oils. With the recent rains... and rains.... and rains.... we now have lots of mosquitoes in our yard. We have also found a tick on our dog. My sister found a tick on her granddaughter, so we are thinking possibly all the rain and standing water is bringing out the bugs in hoards. My nephew was bitten by the Lone Star Tick, which has caused him to have horrible, life-changing allergies, and has changed what he can and cannot eat. A great-nephew, in Arkansas, got a tick-bite a couple weeks ago which caused him to become very sick so they treated him for Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Needless to say, our family is now very cautious regarding ticks!

I have found the following info regarding essential oils and insects, that I thought you may find useful and helpful.

*Cinnamon or citronella keeps mosquitoes at bay.

*Eucalyptus and rose geranium are good for ticks.

*Peppermint oil gets rid of ants.

Here is a recipe for Mosquito and Tick Repellent:

6 ounces Witch Hazel

2 ounces Castor Oil

5 drops Cinnamon Oil

15 drops Eucalyptus Oil

15 drops Citronella Oil

Combine and transfer into a spray bottle. Glass bottles work best when using essential oils. Spray on skin as needed. Note: If you are not sure how your skin reacts to essential oils, try spraying on a small area of skin first; but overall, essential oils are very safe.


Anyone can find the dirt in someone. Be the one that finds the gold. - unknown

"If you search for good, you will find favor; but if you search for evil, it will find you!"

Proverbs 11:27 (NLT)


We love you!

Loretta & Jon