Tag Archives: A thursday for your thoughts

I'm impatient.  So I got you to come on over here even though I really haven't written anything new.  I spent four hours (I'm lying.  It was much longer than that) working on here last night.  Noticing yesterday how bright and cheery the classrooms are at Rylie's school geared me up.  Each room is painted in some nice rich hue.  Almost made me want to learn.  And paint........ not really. So since I don't want to paint I decided to spiffy up this site. For some reason my other theme has given me some trouble.  You may have noticed the site has been slow-running.  I'm hoping this will be better.  Below I've reposted a renewed invitation for you to come on over and write something.  I'd like you to be my guest.  It's the least you could do since I spent all this time sprucing the place up.

Thursday Thoughts Wanted

Guest writers, I've Missed You.

It's been a few weeks since we've had someone share "A Thursday for Your Thoughts"; that's the bad news.  The good news is, there are still nine Thursdays left in 2013.  That means nine on-line opportunities to encourage someone(s)

Here's your opportunity to tell your story

or share your super-easy five ingredient/five-star meatloaf.

We'd love to hear your testimony

or your thoughts on life.

Tell us how you got your toddler potty-trained, your first grader to keep his room clean

or how you keep your pre-teen drama-free

Suggestions and  solutions welcome, but not required.

-Sometimes knowing there other parents out there who are clueless, but trying-

frustrated, but sticking to it-helps us know we're not alone.

  Or maybe you've been there and done that; a sage with wisdom-please share!

We'd love to hear from you youngsters too.  Tell us how to twitter I mean tweet, or tell us what the perfect parent looks like to you.

Pictures wanted;  we love pictures.

No minimum/ maximum word count or  writing experience required.

Just write.

Send your contribution or questions to kristiburden@gmail.com

Here are a few previous contributions to

 "A Thursday for Your Thoughts":

A poem by Alison Howell- http://godsgirlies.com/?p=4149

On loss by Cindy Huff- http://godsgirlies.com/?p=2374

Waiting for God's plan by Jane Crain-http://godsgirlies.com/?p=2608

Beauty tips by Mikala DeVillier-http://godsgirlies.com/?cat=316

Or read them all by clicking on "A Thursday for Your Thoughts" under the categories heading to the right.

Can't wait to hear from you.

Written by Jordan Stoker

The Lord was good to me.

I did not get perfect parents.  They did not get a perfect daughter (anyone?) I always knewJordan and Mom.2 they wanted God's very best for me, though. I heard that and I visibly saw it.

One way was my mom started leading a Mom's prayer group (called Moms In Touch International) when I was in high school.  Every Monday morning my mom plus 3 or 4 of my friends' moms would gather at our dining room table.  My mom called it Moms In Touch.  I called it super inconvenient (I mean, was I expected to get my own jeans from the dryer??) and somewhat embarrassing ("Jordan's mom is like super religious").

Without fail, those moms met.  Sometimes just 2 of them, because of illness or other unexpectancies.  I never knew what they prayed specifically about.  Honestly, I never really cared to ask.

I just noticed, and I never forgot the image of those moms praying together.

Fast forward through college, getting married, and moving to Nederland.  I was attending the Women's Bible Study at FBC Nederland and I heard an announcement about MITI (Moms In Touch International, which is now called Moms In Prayer), I was immediately attracted to it.  I had my own school age kids now, and I wanted to be a part.

I was so nervous (even though Nita Hughes, who was the facilitator, was and still is one of the gentlest spirits I know) but I felt a connection right away with the other moms.  I went a few times and the next year my kids started public school one in 2nd and one in Kindergarten.

Three or four of us met, and I cried through the whole prayer time.  It hit me square on that these were the same verses and similar prayers that were prayed over me by my own mom.  God's mercy nearly knocked me out.  I realized wholeheartedly that the prayers of my mom's prayer group had been heard. All the poor choices, ugly situations, people I had associated with came pouring into my mind.

Jordan and Mom.1

He was showing me that I had been spared; perhaps by a debilitating car crash, disease, teen pregnancy, or possibly even death.  Maybe, but most importantly I believe I had been spared of a life apart from Him.

All these things were specifically prayed for week after week, and I am a living testimony that "..the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective" (James 5:16).  I am so glad I didn't get what I deserved (and still deserve).

I am so thankful for my prayerful mom.

Jordan's Mom

I am not a praying expert.  

I'm just a mom with a desire to have God's very best for her children, just like my mom.


I think you can relate.

I want you to know that there is a small group of us that meets every week to pray specific prayers for our children and their schools.  I want you to know that we do not meet on Monday mornings while our kids get ready for school (yikes! I guess Monday mornings were different way back then). We would like you to join us. We meet for an hour or less.  We strictly pray.  It's confidential, and we take that very seriously.

We meet at FBC Nederland in the Education Building.

Room 108

Sundays @ 6:00

Wednesdays @7:00

We recognize it is a privilege to pray with moms, especially when it's about our most treasured "possessions."

I truly believe there should be many Mom in Prayer groups in our area.  If it doesn't work out for you to come to ours, start your own.

You can do it, and you and your family will be blessed.

(www.momsinprayer.org is a great resource, but I am sure there are others)

I want to end by doing a little exercise together -  insert your child or children's' names in the blanks below............

May the God of hope fill ___________ with all joy and peace as he/she trusts in You, so that ____________ may overflow with hope by the power of Your Holy Spirit.

(Romans 15:13)

May_________be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. May he/she put on the armor of God so that he/she can take his/her stand against the devil's schemes.

(Ephesians 6:10-11)

Now, go back and insert the children of someone else.

That's the heart of Moms in Prayer.

Be blessed,


About Jordan: Jordan is the mom of four fabulous kids and she's a coach's wife.  One of the things that amazes me about the Stoker family is their devotion to being at church; even every Sunday during busy football season.  She has a warm smile the size of Texas even though she's from Iowa.  She's one of the first people I text when I have a prayer need.  When she says she's going to pray for me, I believe it! She's a beauty; from her gorgeous long locks to her compassionate heart. I love this lady like a sister.

Please consider writing something for our "A Thursday for Your Thoughts" segment.  On second thought, don't consider it.  Just do it.  Knowing how you've overcome a struggle or hearing how God has blessed your family is such a joy for our readers. Have a good recipe?  Share it.  Is there a must-read book you'd like to tell us about? We've had nine year old writers and writers from the Pacific Northwest; everybody's qualified to share. All you have to do is send me your writing on email.  Pictures are great, but not necessary. Others will be blessed and you will be too. I'll be checking my email.
















Written by Gaye Fowler


                  This month I celebrate the birth of Ethel Nunley Parker who was born in 1903, in a small rural town in Texas.  Ethel was the eldest of four children.


Ethel was 8 years old, when her family moved to Bakersfield, California to work in the oil fields.   This is where Ethel received her first exposure to church.  Her grandmother, Lucy, was a foot-washing - Hard-Shell Baptist.  She took Ethel to Sunday School and church.



Times were hard in California and things were not going well with her parents.  In 1914, when Ethel was 11 years old, Ethel’s father decided to return to Texas.  Ethel’s mother refused to go with him.  They divorced.  It was decided that they would split the four children.  Ethel and her brother, J.T., came back to Texas with their dad.  Obie, and Tommy stayed in California with their mother.  Less than two months after Ethel left California, her brother Obie died.


Ethel’s father, Alpine, remarried in 1916. He married Allie Hall in Benjamin, Texas.  To this union, were added two sisters and a brother for Ethel.  They were a very close family.

Allie was a Christian woman. She taught children in Sunday School in the small Baptist Church where they lived.  She never made Ethel go to church, but through the way she lived, Ethel was greatly influenced. The rest of Ethel’s life she considered Allie to be her mother.

Ethel’s father was a very good and caring man, but was not a Christian. For years he would take Allie to church, but he would stay in the car.  One night while sitting in the car, the Holy Spirit touched his heart.  He immediately left his car and ran down the aisle of the church and gave his heart to Jesus.

Not long after Ethel’s father was saved, Ethel, an adult by now, gave her life to Jesus also.    

1922, Ethel married Omar Parker.  They had two children, Nadene and Joe.

Ethel had always wanted to play the piano. So she took in laundry in order to pay for piano lessons for Nadene.  It wasn’t long before Nadene was the church pianist and Ethel’s sister, Wanda was leading the singing.

Ethel and Omar moved to Brownwood and became members of the First Baptist Church in Early, Texas where Nadene and her husband were members.   Ethel continued to serve the Lord the rest of her life.  She taught children in Sunday School, Bible Drill, and even went with the youth on a ski trip.

Ethel used every opportunity to witness about her Savior.  She and Omar had a café.  She witnessed there.  She witnessed to nurses and doctors when she was in the hospital.  She witnessed to the sick and the needy as she cared for them.

 When Ethel was 90 years old and coming to the end of her life, she was still teaching adults how to read and write, using her Bible.

Before she died September 25, 1993, she asked her nephew, Mike, to do her service.  She told him not to talk about her life, but to preach a good sermon.  “There will be those there that never set foot in church”, she told him

.Ethel was never famous, but was well-known in her community and church where she lived and served her Lord and Savior.

This month, September 1993, I stop to remember her death and to celebrate her life.

On her death-bed she said “My mother didn’t choose me”. No one knew how much she had suffered for nearly 80 years believing she was unloved and unwanted by her mother.  After all she was the only daughter that her mother ever had.

“Why didn’t she choose me to stay?” she had asked herself many times.

She only saw her natural mother twice after the family was separated.  Both times were after Ethel’s daughter Nadene had children.  There had been no contact all those years.

Ethel may not have been chosen by her mother, but God chose her and made her a vessel for His service.


When my father and my mother forsake me,

 then the Lord will take me up.

Teach me thy way,

 O Lord, and lead me in a straight path. 

 Psalm 27: 10, 11a

God has chosen all of us.  If we will give him our life, he will use us as a vessel in His service.

I have chosen thee and not cast thee away. 

 Isaiah 41:9

Ethel’s admitted weakness was that she struggled in learning to lean on God.  She kept this poem on her refrigerator door that said:

"Good morning God!  You are ushering in another day, Untouched and freshly new.

Well here I come to ask you, God if You will re-new me too.

Forgive the many errors that I made yesterday,

And let me try again dear God, to walk close in thy way.

But Father, I am well aware; I can't make it on my own,

So take my hand and hold it tight for I cannot walk alone."

She had scribbled these words on the back of an old Sunday School poster.  The edges were ragged and worn, yellowed from age, and her writing had slowly faded through the years.  It was still on her refrigerator when she died.


Ethel’s sister, Wanda, best described her in this poem that she wrote about Ethel.

She's Mom – Mother- Meme, She's Grandmother and Sister too

Mother-in-law and Teacher, This list names just a few.


We've looked to her for courage,  For strength to carry on,

She's helped to guide us in the right, When everything seemed wrong.


There's never been a night too dark, Or the hour 'just too late',

Whenever she was needed, She did not hesitate.

We could continue on and on,  And never really say

All the extra special things,  She did day after day.


In flashing lights or headlines bold,  We may never see her name,

But in love it’s written on our hearts,  And she's famous, just the same.


Like little children taught to read, Old folks cared for, too.

She's diapered, cooked, cleaned and fed, And spanked quite a few.


On Sunday morn, year after year, With Bible open wide,

She taught about God's wondrous love, His Son and how He died.


There's so much more that we could say, But now let’s lift our voice and sing,

A tribute to this one we love, Let’s make the heavens ring.


There's no way to tell her, How much her love has meant.

I know God had a reason, For she was 'Heaven sent'.



She opened up her home, her heart, And everyone could see,

That "as she had done it unto the Least of these, She had done it unto me".


Ethel Nunley Parker was my grandmother


and Kristi’s great grandmother.



Five Generations

My mother (Nadene), me (Gaye), Grandmother (Ethel)

Her Grandmother Lucy, and her natural mother, Elizabeth


Gaye Fowler is a rising author, committed Christian and she's my mom!  She's an awesome "Ma" to thirteen grandkids.   She makes brownies like nobody's business.  A cancer survivor, she believes in the power of prayer. She enjoys genealogy and spending time with her grandkids.   Look for her first book coming soon, "Jardi's Journey".