Heart Choices: 2013-03-03 -->

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A Good Friend and Mentor Died this Week

My friend and mentor Susie went home to be with the Lord this past week.  Although I will miss her, I know where she is and that provides such comfort.  I've been looking for photos of Susie to share with her husband David.  I rediscovered this post I'd written in 2010.  I decided to repost it today in honor of Susie.
Extravagant Grace
I'm joining with eLisa of Extravagant Grace today. We are continuing our series on becoming Titus 2 in 2010.

Here is the Scripture from Titus 2:3-5:

"Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God."

For this week our discussion is focused on the question:

"What does it mean to be reverent?" in becoming a Titus 2 woman.

I believe that being reverent means to show respect. The fear of the Lord is an awesome respect and reverence for God, who is sovereign and has dominion over all His creation.

However, it seems that in today's culture, there's not much of that. Even in day to day relations with people, many children aren't even taught respect for other people.

As a child, I was instructed by my mother to always greet my neighbors with "Hello Mrs. Smith" instead of "hi, how's it going?" or something like that. She believed it showed a sign of respect.

As an adult, I've been honored and privileged to have a mentor named Susie. She was the children's director in Bible Study Fellowship while I was a children's leader. We bonded so well and I just love her.

Susie began mentoring younger women in the ways of God. She uses the Christian Called to Obedience curriculum written by Howie and Dennie Dowell. I'd like to say I was her only student but of course, that's not true.

I was invited to a luncheon that included many of the women Susie has mentored over the years. It's amazing how many women have been impacted since Susie listened to God's call on her life and ...she obeyed.

Hmm ...message to self; trust and obey.

There were about 8 or 9 tables filled with women of all ages who had been mentored by Susie.

Dennie Dowell, the writer of Called to Obedience was present and shared words of wisdom from the Bible.

Susie mentored Jenni, who in turn has now mentored many young moms.
We were taught that fear of man's rejection shouldn't control us. When you are relying on God's eternal, unchanging love for you ...He will provide all you need.

God must be the source of your emotional and spiritual stability. What a great and important lesson for me to learn.

As far as reverencing husbands, I do believe it's important to respect your husband. Many women today seem to find it easy to belittle men. If you ever watch TV commercials, I'm amazed at how they stereotype men.

After reading a book called "Love and Respect" by Dr. Emmerson Eggerichs, I realized how much husbands desire respect. I now look for things I can respect about my husband and ...I tell him.

When you start paying attention, you might be amazed at how many good things you will find that you can respect about your husband. It may start with little things. But note his response. Most times he will be so pleased.
As women we want to be loved. And our husbands crave respect.
~ ~ ~

As I read through this post again, I couldn't help but notice the ripple effect.  One life touching another and in turn that life touching others.  Susie touched many lives, including mine.  I will be forever grateful.

Blessings and love,

Sumstad Family Gathering

Several members of the Sumstad family gathered together at The Farm at South Mountain in Phoenix, Arizona.  As I sat under an umbrella on the patio of The Farm Kitchen eating lunch, I couldn't help but consider that it was a farm in Norway that united each one of us.  Sumstad, Sor-Trondelag, Norway was the birth place of my paternal grandfather.  This was the place where he was born and raised before leaving with his younger brother Konrad for a new life in the United States.  I am a descendant of this family.

Bill and Sharon Sumstad were visiting Reidar in Arizona.  I'd never met Bill or Sharon so this was a great opportunity to get to know them.  My Aunt Ruth (my father's sister) and her husband Bob decided to travel from southern California so they could join us. Barbara Finney, another cousin who winters in Arizona from Wisconsin was able to attend too.

I was given a packet of information on our family history dating back to the late 1700's!  We poured over documents and shared stories.

We laughed and had a great time.  We each had visited Norway at separate times over the years and so we shared our stories.  We tried to piece together what this Sumstad family was all about.

How thrilled I was that the Sumstad family was a family of faith. Faith in Jesus.  How often that faith begins with one person and spreads to others.  Not all members of our families continued in that faith for themselves but there are many.  And for that I'm grateful.

My own grandfather came to America through Ellis Island.  He settled in Brooklyn, New York where he met my grandmother.  He began teaching the Bible in his native tongue to other Norwegians who had moved to this land.

Brothers Reidar and Bill had a sense of humor that I enjoyed.  We share the same great grandfather.  Or was it our great great grandfather?  I must admit that I'm new to understanding ancestry.

Here are a few photos I took during our afternoon at The Farm.

Bill Sumstad and his wife Sharon from the Seattle area

My father's sister Ruth and her husband Bob from southern California

This is not the end of our Sumstad family gatherings.  Bill and Sharon have planned a reunion for this August in Seattle.  I love that the family of Ingebright Tomasen Sumstad have decided to take the time to get to know one another.  As we said our goodbyes, I knew that we would gather again in the future.

Blessings and love,


Spring is in the Air

Spring is in the air.  Don't forget that I live in Phoenix.  Yes, it's March but it's a beautiful time of year out here.  Baseball spring training is happening across the valley of the sun.  It was such fun to attend a baseball game with my aunt and uncle who were visiting from California.  The LA Angels were playing against the Chicago Cubs.  Sorry Aunt Ruth and Uncle Bob but the Cubs won 4-2.

My pastor is retiring.  It's sad as I will miss him.  He has been such a source of encouragement to me over the years.  But we got to hear the possible new pastor preach his first sermon.  There was a vote and I'm waiting with anticipation.  I really liked him and voted ...yes.

My dad celebrated his 84th birthday last week on February 28th.  He had a fun time with a family dinner.  I only wish I could have been there too.  The next day he was surprised by a birthday party given by friends he's known since childhood.  Tootsie and Louie are long time friends from Brooklyn, NY.  They all ended up in Florida and my dad stays in touch.  They had balloons and cake and ...lots of  fun reminiscing!

I had to share a partial photo of Mary.  She and Lizzie are twins and are in the Mini Mustang class.  But they are the cutest.  Check out her zebra coat and back pack; too cute.  It was cold last week after all.

I love to take photos of the children reading.  They are so funny as they read out loud.  Sometimes they make believe they are Mrs. Rosetti or Miss Debbie and we have to stifle our laughter.

I continue to count my every day blessings ...

#712 Spring weather in Phoenix
#713 Spending time with my aunt and uncle from California
#714 A wonderful church family
#715 Great Bible preaching
#716 Continued progress on my book
#717 Getting to know Lori, a substitute teacher who worked with me last week
#718 Heidi is feeling better :)
#719 Fun at a spring training baseball game
#720 All the children cooperated during our school's critical incident drill
#721 That my dad is doing well health wise (praise God for that)
#722 My dad got to celebrate another birthday and enjoy his great grandchild

I'm linking up with Ann of A Holy Experience for Multitudes on Mondays.

Blessings and love,

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