Spring is Here!

Spring is a time of rebirth. The snow is slowly melting and the temperature rises. The sun is a bit warmer and the daffodils are pushing their way through the earth. We can shed our winter coats and boots in favor of less cumbersome jackets and our favorite flats or sneakers. We are shaking off the cold and embracing the warmth of the coming season. The earth becomes green again and the trees begin to grow leaves and buds. New life is all around us!

“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness
and streams in the wasteland.”

-Isaiah 43:19 (NIV)

This new life is brought forth by the rain and sun in perfect harmony, much like our lives are full of joys and trials, but never more than we can bear. James 1:2-4 (NIV) says  “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” A soft rain nourishes the plants and lets their stalks grow strong. Not all rains are soft and gentle; sometimes the rains are hard.  A hard rain may seem to dash the young buds in the garden, but when the rain subsides and the sun reappears, the flowers will bloom brighter than ever. Much like these flowers, God never gives more than we can bear. He rewards the testing of our faith with perseverance, when in full effect leaves us complete and lacking in nothing. What a wonderful springtime for us!

What a marvelous sign that Easter falls in the Springtime. Jesus broke the cold bonds of death to be resurrected and offer a spring of eternal life to all.  He was tested, but triumphed over even the finality of death so that we could live in Him. With Jesus we are relieved of a cold spiritual winter, and can always rejoice in a warm and green spring, no matter the weather around us. Like the beautiful blossoms in the spring garden, the joy of Christ blooms in our hearts.

This Easter we are reminded of John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (NIV)

Each year as we see the rebirth and growth of flowers and trees around us, God is calling us to be reborn and grow, too. He wants us to continue to grow in the real life Jesus died to give us. We need to shed the old life without Christ and experience a new life with Him.

 

Enjoy your journey.

Seasons of Love

Valentine’s Day is upon us and we are implored daily to buy flowers, candy, and jewelry to declare our love for our beloved ones. Children give each other paper valentines with pictures of hearts and cute sentiments. Teenagers are giddy with excitement over first dates and first loves. Love is in the air!

What is love? It’s one of those things we just know when we see it. The American Heritage Dictionary defines love as a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person. Do you remember your first love, the exhilaration you felt just being near him or her, the whispered secrets, and the pledges of devotion? The innocence of first love is not something we forget. However, as life goes on, that childlike innocence about love fades away and is replaced by the grown-up version.

“When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me.”
–1 Corinthians 13:11 NIV

The adult version of love is different from that singularly focused love of our youth. Our love has expanded. We may have a spouse to love, children to love, and we love our parents and siblings with a greater understanding of the challenges of raising a family. We have a better understanding of the different opportunities we have to share our love with others.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”
–1 Corinthians 13:4-8 NIV

There is another kind of love that is the highest form of love we can offer one another. It is agape love, the love that God has for us. Agape is a never-ending flow of unselfish love that is always true to the description in the verse above. God loves us so much that He gave His son to pay for our sins and He continues to love us wherever we are.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
–John 3:16 NIV

“So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.”
–1 John 4:16 ESV

This Valentine’s season, remember, no matter where you are in love, let God stir your heart. He’s always there to keep you moving on the journey. Keep your heart open so you can work with Him and allow Him to work through you. When we love God first, we can love others unconditionally as God loves us.

Enjoy your day!
Gayle

**If you sincerely feel your heart wanting a more intimate relationship with God, pray this prayer:

Dear Lord Jesus,
I do believe You are the son of God and You died on the cross to pay the penalty for my sin. Please come into my life, forgive my sin, and make me a member of Your family. I now turn from going my own way. I want You to be the center of my life. Thank You for Your gift of eternal life and Your Holy Spirit, who has now come to live in me. I ask this in Your name. Amen.

A Fresh Start

It’s hard to believe that just two weeks ago we celebrated Christmas. The cookies, the presents, the eggnog! A few days later we had New Year’s Eve and more celebrations. Then it was New Year’s Day and the declarations of change for the coming year. Now we’re a few days into 2013 and diligently following our resolutions.

Resolutions are made from evaluating our lives and recognizing where we’ve gone astray. We start a new year with a passion for life and health. We go to the gym regularly and eat more green vegetables and slow down on dessert. Somehow, though, by the end of the same year, that passion for healthy living has evaporated. Life has gotten too busy, fast food is too easy, and the grocery store’s produce section contains too much hassle. If nothing else, the hectic pace of the holidays makes any food we could scarf down appropriate and the flurry of visitors and decorating makes the gym inconvenient. So, here we are resolving again to make time for ourselves, eat healthy foods, exercise and turn back the scale.

Is your body a mirror of your spirit? Has the hectic nature of life caused you to neglect spiritual nourishment? Do you need to make a spiritual fresh start? The good news is a fresh start can come at any time of the year! The life of Jesus Christ gave us the hope for the best fresh start anyone could hope for, the gift of salvation. We are born anew upon accepting Jesus in our hearts. If you don’t yet know the best of fresh starts, pray to turn from sin and accept Jesus as your Savior today.

If you are a Christian, but need to make a fresh start, the Scriptures are a great place to begin. There is no better food for the soul than the Word. Resolve to make time to read your Bible and reflect. Improve your spiritual “diet” with regular helpings of Christian teachings and music. Don’t forget to exercise your prayer “muscles” by spending time with God. It’s also important to take time write, sing, worship, or enjoy any activity that brings you closer to Him. If we make healthy choices daily and make these resolutions a part of our routines, we won’t need radical declarations next year. We will already have a life built on health and well-being, inside and out. When life gets stressful or you’re tempted to choose poorly, speak the following Scriptures as a reminder that God has His hand in everything we do!

 

“Cast your burden upon the Lord, and He will support you; He will never allow the righteous to be shaken.” -Psalm 55:22

 

“Be gracious to me, God, for man tramples me; he fights and oppresses me all day long. My adversaries trample me all day, for many arrogantly fight against me. When I am afraid, I will trust in You. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” -Psalm 56:1-4

 

“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” -1 Corinthians 10:31

 

“I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me” -Philippians 4:13

 

“Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple.” -1 Corinthians 3:16-17

 

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” -Romans 12:2

Thankful!

“I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers.”

-Ephesians 1:16

 

Hello friends,

It seems like summer was just here and this week brings our Thanksgiving celebrations! Thanksgiving is a time for family and friends to come together and celebrate the Lord’s many blessings for us. This year, I am especially thankful that Michael and I have overcome health challenges and are strong and healthy. We are grateful for our family: our parents and siblings, sons, daughter, and daughters-in-law, our beautiful grandchildren, and friends all over the world.

The new version of the book went to press, and we pray that it will bring the powerful healing message of Jesus Christ to everyone who reads it. I am grateful for the many opportunities to talk with groups about the amazing things God can do in our lives when we stop  long enough to open our hearts to Him. I am also grateful for the things God has in store for me, whatever they may be.

This year, while you’re gathered with and offering a prayer of Thanksgiving for your family and friends, pray for those who aren’t as fortunate. Please pray for those who don’t know Christ. Offer a prayer for those people who are without friends and family, without food and shelter, and for those who live in places where God is not welcome. We Americans are blessed to have the freedom to worship God every day. Pray for our leaders that they may receive God’s wisdom to guide this nation. Pray for peace in the world.

May God be with you this Thanksgiving day,

Gayle

“Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever.”

-Psalm 107:1

“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.”

-Colossians 3:17

 

November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month!

Hello Friends!

 

November is Lung Cancer Awawreness Month. As you know, I am a survivor of lung and breast cancer and toured the country for Lung Cancer Alliance a few years ago. Please take time this month to say a prayer for those affected by lung cancer. Please pray for the doctors, caregivers, and patients, and that awareness of the disease is increased.

Thank you,

Gayle

 

Please also visit www.lungcanceralliance.org for excellent information on lung cancer statistics and educational materials. Lung Cancer Alliance is also a great resource for finding support groups and for help with connecting with smoking cessation efforts in your area.

Helpful Bible Verses

If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, try reading some of these verses three times a day (or more!). They’ve helped me and I continue to say them out loud everyday!

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.    Philippians 4:13 (NIV)

He sends His word and heals me and rescues me from the pit of destruction  Psalm 107:20 (NIV)

I will listen closely to God’s words. I will not let them out of my sight. I will keep them within my heart, for they are life to all who find them and health for the whole body  Proverbs 4:20-22 (NIV)

I pray that I may enjoy good health and that all may go well with me, even as my soul is getting along well. 3 John 2 (NIV)

The Lord forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. Psalm 103:3 (NIV)

I shall not die, but live, and shall recall the illustrious acts of the Lord. Psalm 118:17 (NIV)

I cry out to the Lord and He heals me. Psalm 30:2 (NIV)

The Lord has declared that He will restore me to health and restore my wounds. Jeremiah 30:17 (NIV)

The Lord is good. A strength and stronghold in the day of trouble. He knows (recognizes, and has knowledge of and understands) those who take refuge and trust in Him. Nahum 1:7 (AMP)

There is always hope! I have come to know Jesus as my healer. He is a free gift just waiting for you, too. All you have to do is believe in Him, and receive Him into your life.

Enjoy your day!

Gayle

How We’ve Been Making Lemonade…

Welcome to the new and updated www.gaylezinda.com! We have been busy since the last time many of us shared stories!  We’ve had our share of joys, but also have been making plenty of lemonade from life’s lemons.

After two years on the road promoting Pink Lemonade and lung cancer awareness, Adam, Michael, and I decided to take some time off.  Adam went to California to visit Katie, a wonderful woman he met on the tour. They married and now live in San Diego, CA, and have a son, Aiden, who will celebrate his first birthday on October 6th. He’s excited to see his Grammy! Adam co-owns Palomar Solar and Katie is a top sales representative for Cintas.

Michael and I were set for medical mission in Africa, but I stayed stateside to help a dear friend, Autis, during her battle with colon cancer.  We moved her into our home and I stayed back and cared for her while Michael went to Africa on the mission. Sadly, in January 2009 we lost our friend Autis.

We took more time to visit our family and friends in the Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky area. Our son Nick and daughter-in-law Lisa are the proud parents of Colin, Jaxon, and Dominic. Their dog, Emma, is still my girl! Colin loves football and school, while Jaxon and Dominic love visiting Grammy and Papaw. Nick is the owner of A Rizzo Group, doing deck cleaning and sealing, landscaping, and painting. Lisa continues to teach physical education classes in northern Kentucky.

My mom and dad, Bert & Bernie,  and siblings Connie, Jim, Wayne, and Jeff and their spouses and families live in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area, and we were thrilled to have the opportunity to visit with them.

John and Elisa moved to Madison, WI. John moved to work on his PhD while Elisa became mom to Thora. Phillip is working for General Mills in Minneapolis, MN. Claire was working as a special education teacher in Washington, DC. Her boyfriend, Andy, is a journalist and moved with Claire to live in Minneapolis with her brother Phillip. Claire is working on her masters in special education. Luke was working in Peoria, IL for Caterpillar and has recently been transferred to Milwaukee, WI. My father- and mother- in-law, Bill & Joyce,  live in Milwaukee and we visit often. Michael and his brother David, who lives in Fredonia, WI, love to get together to talk about fishing and boating and all things Wisconsin.

In November 2009, we made a trip to Scotland for a speaking engagement for  EMD Serono. We had a fabulous time and very much enjoyed meeting people from the 37 countries represented.

After my successful completion of treatment for lung cancer, Michael was set for a knee replacement. I was told I had breast cancer and successfully completed treatment. Michael had a knee replacement and due to complications had the knee removed and replaced again. He spent two and a half months in a wheelchair. His second replacement has been a success and he is now gardening, walking, and driving!

I am completely cured of lung and breast cancer by the grace of God! Life has thrown us some lemons, but we’ve made some sweet lemonade! I’ve been on the road for 5 months continuing to speak and write and look forward to seeing old friends and making new ones!