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Thank YOU!

Thank you for the gift of your time today. My prayer is each time you stop to visit you are blessed with truth, and encouraged to keep going ~ one foot in front of the other, chin up ~ simply because you've been reminded you are on the road to VICTORY!

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Singing in the Middle...Ruth Snell

Sing and make music in your heart to the LORD, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.  
Ephesians 5:19-20


This is my favorite picture of my friend, Ruth Snell.  I think it captures her child-like JOY, which bubbles up and out of her from a deep trusting relationship she shares with Jesus!

We've known each other for a few years now.  Father crossed our paths in leadership with Community Bible Study right here in our little town.  However, serving together was just the beginning of a sister friendship we now share.  

Our friendship has been forged and bonded in prayer and sharing our testimonies of God's faithfulness in our lives all the way back then until now.  Raw vulnerability - that's what we share - walking hand in hand to Jesus!

Ruth has kindly given me the privilege to share her story.  This is God's powerful story of grace and faithfulness; teaching His daughter to sing praises in the middle...in the dark.

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Ruth Taylor was born and raised in Canton, IL, near a corn field.  She recalls of God, "I remember sensing and knowing God's love as a child."

" You were my friend before I knew You."

It was in her college years at Eastern Illinois University, Ruth was confronted with the idea of a personal relationship with Jesus.  She was participating in a Bible study on campus.  Ruth describes her experience as "feeling the rub" between her heart and her head.  There was a friction between God's love, of which she felt secure, and what God would ask of her, if she were to commit to follow Him.

"You looked from afar and called my name.
You knew and lovingly have drawn me 
to Your side to walk this way."

Later, married to John Snell, they moved their family of five to Stone Mountain, Georgia.  Ruth is the loving and devoted mother of three; Ellen, Andy and Michael.  Ellen and Michael await their family in Heaven.

It happened in this season of life, John and Ruth received the hard truth; two of their three precious children, Ellen and Michael, were diagnosed with  a neuro-muscular disease, Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA)

"Oh, how I'm grateful for Your presence;
how I'm grateful You have called."

As life continued in the Snell family with a 'new normal', the needs of Ellen and Michael became overwhelming as Ruth and John became increasingly responsible for every aspect of their children's daily living.  The couple wisely made an agreement to take turns getting up in the night, giving each a full night's sleep every other night.  

Ruth recalls grumbling and complaining as she was called out of sleep on her nights to care for her children.  They were long hours on duty, sleepless nights; however, complaining came to an end as Ruth read the book, The Power of Praise and Worship by Terry Law.  Terry's real life story of learning to praise God in his difficulty challenged Ruth to turn grumbling into praise.

"Oh, how I'm grateful You have called me
 to Your side to walk this way."

In Ruth's own words from October 13, 2014:
 "I was convicted of my grumbling and complaining.  I asked God to help me practice this truth on my night to get up with the children.  When one of the kids would call, I'd immediately choose an attribute of God to praise.  He has so many; it wasn't difficult to think of just one: Love, Forgiveness, Strength, Hope, Joy, Peace, All Powerful, All Knowing, Wonderful Counselor.  I chose with my will to turn my focus from my circumstances to my wonderful Savior and praise Him.  This choice totally and forever changed my experience of this difficult place.  I look at this memory now as a sweet time where God met me in the middle (of the difficult place) with His presence.  It did not change my circumstances.  It changed me because I experienced God's presence."

"You knew my need and saw me struggling,
You knew my sorrow and my pain.
You knew and lovingly have drawn me to Your side to walk this way."

All praise to God, for He is good and His love endures forever.
Currently, Ruth enjoys being a Nana to Isabel and Caleb, fruit of her son, Andy and his wife Kristin.  Ruth has entered a new season of hearing God's call, and He is daily equipping her to be the Assistant Teaching Director for the women's evening Community Bible Study (CBS) class in Lilburn, GA.

Click here for more information on this Gwinnett Women's Evening CBS class 

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The words enclosed above from Ruth's Song are a gift to Ruth from the Lord during her study of Deborah in the book of Judges through Community Bible Study.

Ruth's Song~
You were my friend before I knew You, 
Looked from afar and called my name.
You knew and lovingly have drawn me, to Your side to walk this way.

Oh, how I'm grateful for Your presence!
Oh, how I'm grateful You have called!
Oh, how I'm grateful You have drawn me, to Your side to walk this way.

You knew my need and saw me struggling,
You knew my sorrow and my pain.
You knew and lovingly have drawn me to Your side to walk this way.

Oh, how I'm grateful for Your presence!
Oh, how I'm grateful You have called!
Oh, how I'm grateful You have drawn me, to Your side to walk this way.

I praise Your name for You are worthy.
I praise Your name for You are good.
I praise Your name for You have drawn me to Your side to walk this way.
To Your side to walk this way.


Blessings of GREAT JOY on your amazing adventure journey with Jesus!
Lisa