God Will Not Send Anyone To Hell / Spiritual Rape

Now I’m getting on shaky ground, right?  I mean, to read my posts about healthy cooking, how to use cast iron, funny things my husband has done….. that’s good stuff right there.  But now I bring up God.  And Hell.   Careful Preacher’s Wife, this could get uncomfortable!

heaven-and-hellFirst, let’s discuss that guy (or girl) in high school.  You know, the one who never looked you square in the eyes, followed you around (at a distance of course) and showed up everywhere you were?  Let’s name him/her Creeper.  You knew Creeper had a crush on you.  Creeper would stare at you from across the room.  Creeper would eventually get up the nerve to talk to you or even ask you out.  You weren’t interested so you said “No.”  Then Creeper would call you.  Or these days, text you.  Creeper might even write you notes.  The words “I’m not interested”  really meant nothing.  Creeper stalked you on social media.  You wanted Creeper to leave you alone.  You finally say “Get away from me!” slightly worried you’ll hurt Creepers feelings but enough is enough, right?  Geesh!  Leave me alone!

Now let’s shift gears here.  Let’s shift to thinking about God.  Keep reading – it all comes together in just a minute.  From the beginning, God has been pursuing you.  God has a desire for you to turn to Him – when things are good and when the road is rocky….  Heck, when the road turns into a cliff and you’re barely hanging on!  He desires you.  Matthew 11:28 says “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”  He wants to hear from you – even though he’s omniscient (all knowing, having complete understanding).  If you have kids, think about it this way.  Don’t you know when your child is hurting?  Don’t you know when they are upset about something or someone?  I don’t know about you, but I love it when my child comes to me and confides in me.  Whether she asks for advice or not, I love it when she opens up to me and shares with me even though I already know what is bothering her.  I love putting my arms around her and comforting her.  God is the same way – He loves it when we come to Him.  His greatest desire is for us to want to be with Him.  He wants to give us rest.

Free choiceAlright, now let’s combine our two areas of discussion here.  Creepers and God.  And no, I’m not suggesting that God is a Creeper for goodness sakes!  Stick with me here folks!  God desires us.  He wants us.  But if you spend your whole life treating him like a Creeper telling Him “I’m not interested” then guess what?  He respects your free will.  He won’t force anything on you.  Even Heaven.  If you spend your life avoiding God, why in the world would He force you to go to Heaven where you will spend eternity with Him?  He will brokenheartedly allow you to choose to spend eternity away from Him in Hell.  He doesn’t send you there.  He wants you to choose Him.  But if He forces Himself on you, it’s no longer free will.  It’s spiritual rape.

Deuteronomy 31:8 says “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”  He’s with you.  So no matter how far you’ve run from Him or how much you’ve done to push him away, He’s there.  Quietly waiting for you to turn to Him.  Doesn’t matter who you’ve slept with, how much you had to drink last night, how high you may be right now reading this.  He loves you.  Doesn’t matter if you go to church every Sunday, serve in soup kitchens or give loads of money to charity.  He loves you.  You can’t get away from His love.  But He will not force it on you.  You have to choose it.

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Tammy Lanham Tammy Lanham is the wife of That Preacher Tommy Lanham, Momma to That cute little artist, Appolonya and that adorable engineer, Dylan.  She homeschools them both.  She is also the owner of Tammy Lanham Images.  In her free time, she….. wait – she has no free time…  nevermind.

Thanks for reading!

 

 

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How Michael Jackson and Tommy Lanham Ruined My Evening

I love my husband.

He came home as we were preparing to go the ball park tonight and watch my son play a Rookie Ball game.  It’s like t-ball but they hit the ball that is pitched from a pitching machine.  In this case, a round wheel that whirls and spits the ball out.  Gorgeous night for a game.  I came through the house gathering the last of the supplies – ball, hat, glove, batting gloves, cleats, the ball player, you know… the essentials.

As I gather the ball player, I noticed he and his sister are staring intently at a video my husband has pulled up on the laptop.  It’s the Michael Jackson Thriller video.  At the very moment this image popped up……

Michael Jackson

………. my children did this…..

scream scream2

Appolonya ran into the corner screaming “Why??  Why?????  Why would you show us that??”  I went to console her and she lashed out at ME asking “Why would you let Daddy show us that, Mommy?”  Yeah, like it’s MY fault…  In the meantime, Dylan is balled up in the fetal position on the floor squeezing his eyes shut and holding his hands over his ears while he’s screaming at the top of his lungs “Dad, make it STOP!”  Might I add that Dad is still sitting at the laptop trying his best to not bust out laughing.  I’m shooting darts at him in my mind but he doesn’t feel them.

mad

Yep – nice, calm, peaceful night before a ball game.  After the game, dear ol’ Dad had to go counsel a family and left Mommy at home to get the children in bed.  After we got home and got our baths, Dylan wouldn’t get more than 5 feet from me.  He sat in the floor in the bathroom while I helped Appolonya blow dry her hair.  When I tucked her in, he sat at the foot of her bed asking if that man was ever going to come back.  Then I tucked Dylan in.  Oh goodness…..  Poor kid.  He finally decided it would be okay to fall asleep if he slept with every single light in his room on.

Yep  – he’s asleep with every light on.  ‘Cause that’s how we roll when Daddy terrifies his children.

Thanks Tommy – and thank you Michael Jackson for such a peaceful evening.  Tommy – next time, you’re on tucking in duty!

 

 

 

It was legal… I promise…

So here goes… I know a lot of you think I’m a little nuts.  Well, here’s proof that I’m a LOT nuts.  I’ve been learning more & more about how the couponing thing can really help your budget and the more serious you get about it, the more you can save.  I went last week and saved a LOT of money, walked out with an overflowing cart for $5.79.  This got me to wondering & researching and in my research, I came across The Krazy Coupon Lady’s website.  She’s been on TLC’s Extreme Couponing.  You think I’m crazy?  Check her out!

Anyway, I’ve been getting most of my coupons online, from friends or sometimes, out of the Sunday Newspaper.  When you combine your coupons with advertised sales, you can get things at a very, very low price.  The Ronzoni pasta is on sale at Kroger this week for .49 and I had several coupons for $1 off of 2 boxes (making them FREE) and ended up with almost 30 boxes of free pasta!  Coupons are all online for this one!  Anyway, I decided to start my search for more coupons.  The Sunday paper is expensive, here.  Almost $2 per week and one lady I found on youtube spends $50 a month buying multiple copies of the Sunday paper to get her coupons.  Well…..  you know I hate to spend money on stuff like that so………  here goes……  (I hope you don’t think bad of me)… I went dumpster diving for coupons!  I found a recycling drop off location near our home, took a step stool and gloves and dove in. 

Told you, I’m a little nuts.  Yes, it is legal – for those of you wondering!  As long as I don’t trespass on private property to get the trash, it’s public domain.  The recycling bin I went to was amazingly clean – nothing but paper products in it and no smells whatsoever.  When I opened up the door, the first thing I saw was a stack of coupon inserts from Sunday’s paper!  Now, THAT was motivation!  I climbed my little step stool and started digging.  I ended up getting 47 Sunday paper inserts (red plum and smart source) – that’s roughly the equivalent to 25 Sunday paper’s worth of coupons!  I found half a dozen of the Kroger coupon booklets of coupons they mail out and even found one JC penney $10 off a $10 purchase!!  Why in the world would somebody throw this money away!!

I asked my husband to take some pics or video and he said “No way, I want to look, too!”  I don’t know when I’ve ever found my husband more appealing to me!!  🙂  At that moment, I could kiss his feet!  I’m thinking most husbands wouldn’t even go and if they did, they would be hiding in the car or ducking to make sure no one saw them… not mine! 

So there it is – my crazy, outrageous act for the week!  Subscribe to this blog (to the right in the “Yep, sign me up!” box) and hear more crazy antics and follow my weight loss journey as well.  Have a fantastic week and try doing something outside of YOUR comfort zone this week!

The number…

GULP….. so here we go…

As most of you know, I’m on a journey – a journey to become sober.  Definition of sober:  showing no excessive or extreme qualities of fancy, emotion or prejudice.   I am Tammy Lanham and I am addicted to food.  I’ve been sober for 10 days. 

I use food as a drug.  I began my journey on Tuesday, 1/18/11 with a call to my life coach Brian Osher.  Brian has coached me in growing Tammy Lanham Images and he was the first one I thought of when I finally admitted I needed help.  What made me realize I needed help?  In a clothing store, as I tried on clothes, my 7 year old daughter sneered her nose & said in disgust “Mommy, your legs are fat.”  She never, ever says stuff like that so I knew it was sincere.  And a shattered Mommy fell into a thousand little pieces on the ground (figuratively).    

Then, on Friday, 1/21/11, I had my first fall off the wagon experience… yep, just 4 days into my journey, I messed up.  What a role model I am, huh?  I took my husband out to eat at CiCi’s (a pizza buffet) restaurant for his birthday.  I felt miserable.  The very next day, I did it again – I ate way too much for dinner and wanted to puke.  I honestly believe I would be bulimic if I didn’t despise throwing up so much.   That feeling after you eat too much is just awful – not just the physical misery but the emotional disappointment you feel in yourself. 

With much thought and prayer, I felt like I needed to get additional help.  If I was going to use AA terms like “sober” and “falling off the wagon” then I needed to find some positive AA –type solutions.  I read online about sponsors in AA:

“A sponsor is someone who has been where we want to go in our twelve step program and knows how we can best get there. Their primary responsibility is to help us work the 12 steps by applying the principles of the program to our lives. They lead us by example as we see how the program works in their lives through sharing their personal experiences and stories of where they were and where they are now. We start to learn how to become sober by listening and doing the footwork that our sponsor shows us on a daily basis. In time we make these new changes a habit which helps us to remain sober one day at a time.”

If alcoholics have sponsors for their addictions, I can have one for mine, right?  So I thought about my amazing cousin Terri Newcomb.  I honestly think we were sisters separated at birth.  We have children about the same age, similar personalities and outlooks on life and even our parenting styles are similar.  She has fought a weight battle for 6 years and is staying thin and healthy.  When I read “they lead by example” on the sponsorship definition, I thought of Terri.  She is an extremely caring woman who will not hesitate to kick my rear end into gear if I need it.  I knew she would be the person to ask.  And I was right.  This past weekend, I almost had a melt down while grocery shopping for a big family meal I was preparing on Sunday.  I wanted to prepare Ding Dong cake for dessert – but I didn’t think I could handle having the Ding Dongs in my house.  I was literally shaking.  Terri walked me right through that temptation and I walked out of the store with Jell-O and peaches instead. 

And then I found another role model of sorts – Tom Hailey.  Tom has recently been through the weight loss factory and came out at the end of the line looking and feeling amazing.  He posted photographs of his scale periodically.  I thought “Oh my gosh – that’s crazy.  I could never do that.”  Then my friend Shaina Nailleaux  posted her weight yesterday on her blog…  so I guess the peer pressure got to me!  Hehe….  Or I’m delirious but here I am posting my weight…

I began this year on January 1st at two hundred four pounds.  I began this journey on January 18th at two hundred one point eight pounds.  Today, February 1, 2011, I weighed in at one hundred ninety six point four pounds.  I’ve got a long way to go – I’m not setting any long term goals.  My goal is to get through today.  Once today is over, I will move forward to tomorrow.  I know I am comfortable around one hundred fifty pounds.  Each day, I will make decisions that will affect tomorrow in a positive way and help move me closer to one hundred fifty pounds.  I will succeed.  Anybody want to join me?  I challenge you to join me on this journey.  Sign up to follow this blog.  All you have to do is put your email address in the blocks to the right and you will get an email when I post a new thought.  Friend me on Facebook and let’s do this together.  I have no idea what I’m doing – I’m just trying to do this one step at a time.  Let’s do it together!

Stupid wagon

Fell off the stupid wagon – and you know why?  Because I went out to eat with my husband last night for his birthday at CiCi’s (pizza buffet) and for some reason, didn’t know when to stop.  I’m so frustrated with myself!  I had been doing so good!!  Now to remember the stuff I’ve been reading everyday during my devotions & reading time.

“Faith offers hope where none existed.”  – Zig Ziglar

“Every problem is a stepping stone of growth, and every difficulty is an opportunity to trust God more completely, to follow Christ’s example of selfless service and to experience God’s presence.  Out faith-filled response to pain results in great gain.”

“Hard work always pays off.”  – Proverbs 14:23

“Refuse good advice and watch your plans fail; take good counsel and watch them succeed.”  Proverbs 15:22

I’ve been thinking…  if I’m going to treat this like a disease, I really need to research AA and some of the other additional help groups out there.  Don’t alcoholics have sponsors?  Someone they call if they’re about to make a bad decision?  Maybe I need a sponsor to call when I’m overcome with bad ideas & need some encouragement.  Maybe I should carry a card with me that has some of the above quotes and scriptures on it so I can pull it out and remind myself.  Maybe I should write down my daughter’s stinging words “Mommy, your legs are fat.”   That’ll surely remind me what I’m doing and WHY I’m doing it.  I am frustrated but I’m also encouraged.  I know I can do this – I’ve tried losing weight many times before but I’ve never once in my life tried to beat this disease.  There’s a difference and I’m finding out day by day what those differences are and how to overcome this mess I’ve gotten myself into.