"Break a Leg!" they said... 

It has to do with doing well in the entertainment industry...I don't believe it. Hmmmph!

September arrived as I wound my way up through the mountains from California, through the color-splashed mountains of Oregon, right up into the cool air of Washington. This was going to be an awesome vacation! First stop at son, Sam's, house to see my first grandchild, Chase. He looks just like his daddy! Cutie patootie! Had a wonderful time there. The next part of the trip meant a stop over with my baby sister in Anacortes, then up to see my older sister in Sedro-Woolley, and then finally over to see my oldest son, who just moved to Wennatchee, WA from OK. Doesn't that sound like fun?! Yup...except...while visiting in Anacortes, my sister's dog ran into my leg, breaking it. That was Sept 7th...by Sept 10th I was in the hospital having surgery, (with a great orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Stacia Smith). Afterwards, I started Physical Therapy at the Skagit Northwest Orthopedics Physical Therapy in Anacortes with Brett and Josh...awesome P.T.'s! With all of their great work the leg is starting to look almost normal and I hope to be walking on it in a few weeks. (I'll be waiting to see if it means something awesome is going to happen with my projects!...I'll let you know.)

So, the project I am working with now (besides the film) is a Big Band project. Twelve very fun songs that I can hardly wait to see finished. We are set up in Franklin, TN with House of Big, Kent Hooper and Phillip Keveren as our arrangers/engineers/studio. The session players are the very hip/awesome musicians from the Chris McDonald session players. (Go listen online! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IiFsVVEc26I ) Thanks to Ned Lott, who gave the recommendation, Alistair Tober, is our chosen Crooner (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAsbCjR4x5Y ) We are ready to go...waiting for the investors. This is going to be a GREAT project!!

Enjoying this extended Autumn with my sister...we don't have this cool weather in California...and it is GREAT! 

Stay in touch! --Brenda

Things are moving forward 

It looks like this is going to be a great year! In March I met with Ned Lott, (Chronicles of Narnia, etc.), our Casting/Voiceover Director for the film. We met in Thousand Oaks, CA, which meant that I got to travel down that awesome stretch of highway with the ocean at my side, sunlit waves, and the pelicans singing their melody. (more about that story in another post.) When I landed at the studio, it was locked. Hmmm. Then someone drives up and parks...I couldn't see who it was because the sun was in my eyes. Out steps...Mikal Blue! Extraordinarily gifted in, oh, so many areas, and a really nice guy! (Google him and check out his new stuff). Then Ned shows up...and the fun begins! He patiently sat and listened to me caterwholering the songs for the film. Yup, all of them. He truly is a prince of a guy. Great, great, day! :-)

My next trip is coming up soon...actually towards the end of this month. I'm heading to Oregon to meet up with Lars (Larry Kenton) our orchestral arranger/conductor. I ALWAYS have fun with Lars! Such a talented man! Lars is conducting Les Mis at the Cottage Grove theater...and I get the best seat in the house. :-) We might be joined by Julian Soule...another amazing, brilliant, composer...and oh, so much more, and if not, then we'll head to Seattle to meet him there. Do you know how blessed I feel? Oh yeah.

Today David Crowder started following me on Twitter...ok...THAT'S just too cool. :-)

See? Really great things coming my way.


You can have no faith, little faith, failing faith, OR GREAT Faith. And how do you get GREAT faith? By reading the Word of God. By absorbing what it is saying to you. By being obedient to what it says. By interacting daily with the God of the Universe. And by BELIEVING that God IS ABLE to perform everything He promises.

We are obedient because first….we, unreservedly, love him! Secondly, because IT GROWS OUR FAITH. Obedience is when we acknowledge His Lordship in our life and we WALK in this light. When God begins this incredible relationship with us (which, by the way, he is waiting to do), we find our faith growing, our understanding taking root. We come to a realization of what it is that he has been trying to do the entire time for us, that is, reveal Himself to us and plunge us into an intimate relationship with Himself.

We are obedient to gain faith. We are obedient because we want to be like Him. We are not obedient to gain Heaven. We gain Heaven by acknowledging the fact that Jesus, innocent of all sin, went to that stupid cross and died to pay the horrendous debt against us. By grace, you are saved. Our arrogant attitude that we could possibly save ourselves is dashed to the ground in that one miraculous moment when we understand that there is no good within ourselves to ever merit Heaven…to ever merit standing in the Presence of God in all of His purity. We are sinners. But praise be to God who sent His Son to stand in our place, receive our punishment, and to secure our place….that place where we are with Him….for eternity.

That one, all consuming, astounding understanding, seals us to His heart, recreates our purpose, humbles us to our knees, and fills us with the most delicious desire to be all that we can be in order to shed light on the fact that Jesus saves. Jesus saves….and we all need that saving grace. He changes us. He turns our stony hearts to lumps of softened clay, easily molded by His hand. And in that softening and surrender we find the Power of God displayed. No more do we try to earn our way to heaven...we simply throw ourselves to the ground at His feet, tearful of what we now know to be true. Not I, but Christ. Worthy is the Lamb…the LAMB that was slain…to receive power and riches, and wisdom and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing. And by FAITH, we lay hold of this incredible truth. THAT is why we need faith.

God is not the God of  maybe...He is the God of Absolute...trust that.

Weird and Wondrous... 

This is hard to believe....but it is true.

In January I read a book that greatly inspired me. It was a book by prolific Author Lonnie Melashenko, titled In The Presence of Angels. As I read the book I felt strongly compelled to write my own book on angel guardianship. So I did. I tracked down Lonnie and thanked him for his inspiration and shared my book with him. He read it and agreed to write my Foreword. He wrote that Foreword before he knew my last name...or where I lived...even though he NEVER wrote Forewords or made recommendations for anyone. (Reported in the Foreword). When I told him where I had just moved to, he was very surprised to find out that it was in the same town where several of his family lived. In fact, his brother was going to get married and he was headed to this town for the wedding. WOW....so that's cool! We made plans to meet.

Here comes the weird. I was late to church, but as I was running (literally) out of the house, I felt very impressed to grab the new book, He Shall Send Angels, and throw it into my car. (Yup, even I thought that was weird)...but!!!....When I got to church I sat out in the foyer and a lady walked by whom I had been acquainted with for over 30 years. She had been at my very first Bible study when I was a young lady. We both had lived on the West Coast at the time. She knew my father well. I felt very strongly that I needed to stop her and talk...even though she was on her way into the church for the service. Within a few short sentences, she said, "You know I'm getting married next weekend?" AND I INSTANTLY KNEW! My mouth dropped open and I said, "Are you marrying a Melashenko?" "Yes, I am! How did you know?" The story spilled like a ton of water out of my very astonished mouth. Then her mouth dropped open. "What?!!" We planned to talk after the service. I ran out to the car and got the book and set it beside me, more excited for what was coming after the service than what was being said at the service. I just kept smiling and praising God...so tickled!

After the service she brought her fiancee...Lonnie's brother...out to meet me. We were all in astonishment! Lonnie's brother was thrilled with the book and asked for one for a wedding gift. He smiled so big when he saw his brother's picture in it. So I was invited to the wedding...that I was already invited to...to meet my benefactor, whose brother was marrying, my friend. Weird! And most certainly Wondrous!! :-)

There is no hope for you...Really? 

Broken? Hopeless? Guilty? Rotten to the core? Is there hope? Is there help? Listen to what and where our hope comes from...

He shall pray to God, and God will be favorable to him and he shall see his face with Joy: for God will render unto man His Righteousness. God delivers his soul from going into the pit, and his life shall see the light. Job 30:26-28

God says to man, Behold the fear of the Lord THAT is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding. Job 28:28

The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, O Lord, endures forever; forsake not the works of Your own hands. Psalm 138:8

Walk in the Spirit...Galatians 5:16

Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling and to present you faultless before the Presence of His Glory with exceeding JOY; to the only wise God, OUR SAVIOUR, be glory and majesty, dominion and power both now and ever. Amen. Jude 1:24,25

...we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God, which raises the dead; who delivers us from so great a death, and DOES deliver us, in Whom we trust will yet deliver us...II Corinthians 1:9

Now He which establishes us, with you, in Christ, and has anointed us, is God; Who has also sealed us, and given us the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts. vs.21,22

...thanks be to God which gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as you know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord. I Corinthians 15:57, 58

There IS hope. God is not resting in our abilities, righteousness, or perseverance. He is waiting for us to humble ourselves before Him; to trust in HIS abilities, HIS Righteousness, HIS staying power. He invites us to come to Him...and He will never cast anyone away. He invites us to come under His Wing; to dwell in His Presence. The only thing that solves the problems of a questioning heart, is the cry of that heart to God and the certainty that He has heard. We trust that God will yet deliver us. God has heard.

Count Your Blessings 

I love this song, sung by Bing Crosby and Rosemary Clooney in White Christmas. It's an admonition for all of us...keeping a thankful heart. This isn't too hard to do when everything is going well...it seems to slip effortlessly from our lips in the good times "Oh, thank you God!!" But what about in the times when everything seems to be going wrong? Can we still Count Our Blessings? It behooves us to do so. It somehow alters the atmosphere...makes the old devil, flee. He hates our praises. We CAN count our blessings....if you are breathing, it is a blessing (hope), or if the sky above you explodes into a masterpiece of color, it is a blessing (joy), or perhaps an unexpected smile comes your way, (tenderness), have you ever been driving down a highway near a jubilant river, and come upon some deep pools that seem to be perfectly still?...yes, a blessing and a reminder that God will lead you by the still waters. God reveals Himself all around us...even in the bad times. So Count Your Blessings!

Well, all of that to tell you that Lori Glori, International Recording Artist has written a new version (R&B) of the same sentiment....much livelier, I must say! :-) It was masterfully arranged, performed, and produced by Guy Niosi of Niosi Productions....and little ole me got to put my finger into the desert by adding a verse of lyrics. So much fun!! I hope you will find joy in the song.

Head over to Listen to the Music to hear the New Song...Count Your Blessings!

I Will Not Forget You 

"...I will not forget you." Isaiah 49:15

And though after my skin worms destroy this body, YET in my flesh shall I see God; Whom I shall see for myself and my eyes shall behold, and not another." Job 19:26, 27

God will never forget me - Even when the worst of storms shall come and death rots me away...STILL, God can undo this devastation, renew my flesh, and my heart, and I will stand before Him in newness of life. Just think of what He can do RIGHT NOW, in the midst of chaos, brokenness, or hopeless circumstances! There is nothing too hard for God. He loves you...He loves me. :-)

He has not despised nor abhorred the afflictions of the afflicted: neither has He hid his face from him, but when he cried unto Him, He heard! Ps 22:24 (He will not forget you.)

And now shall my head be lifted up above my enemies round about me; therefore will I offer in His tabernacle sacrifice's of JOY: I will SING, yes I will SING praises to the Lord. Ps. 27:6 (I will not forget Him.)

Whatever you ask the Father in My Name, He will give it to you...ask, and you will receive, that your JOY may be full...and you will ask in My Name, but I am not saying that I will pray for you to my Father...no, because the Father Himself LOVES YOU, because you have loved Me and have believed that I came out from God. John 16:23-27 (He will not forget you.)

Go listen to Song of Solomon as if God were singing the words to you. He will NOT forget you.

When Christmas is Difficult... 

I stole that title. DaySpring wrote a wonderful article about it. It resonated with me. There is a reason why we celebrate Christmas; Someone decided to enter this world to bring hope and a future. He grew up and then gave His life...for us. He REDEEMED us. His Name is Jesus. I have been going through some very hard things recently, but the wonderful thing about our Lord is that He invites us to cuddle up with Him...to listen. And in that listening we gain hope and encouragement.

Listen to what He says:

Don't be afraid. I have redeemed you. I called you by your name and you are Mine. I have loved you. Don't be afraid, I am with you. Don't remember the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold I will do a new thing. It will spring up now.. I will make a way in this wilderness, and rivers in the desert. I am the Lord, your Holy One, the Creator...your King. Don't be afraid. Haven't I told you that you are my witnesses? Listen, my servant, the one I have chosen; this is what I say, yes, the One who made you and formed you from the womb, the One who is going to help you says, Do not be afraid. (based on Isaiah 43 &44)

We all know this prayer: Our Father, which art in Heaven hallowed be Thy Name. Thy Kingdom come, Thy Will be done on earth AS IT IS IN HEAVEN. When we think about heaven we think of a glorious place where there is no pain, no loss, no brokenness. Every comfort given. God invites us to pray that His Will for this haven should be performed on earth as well. Hmmmm, nice thought, I think I will pray it. :-)

Head over to "Listen to the Music" and listen to the Christmas song.

A Place to Hide 

Where does one go when they are misunderstood, or plagued with a sense of smallness, meanness, or limitations? You can get away from others when you need a quiet place to heal, but where do you go to get away from yourself, from the sense of your failure, your weakness, your sins, and shortcomings?

​Where? To the Eternal God who is your refuge. Till in HIS IMMENSITY you forget your limitations.

​He invites you to come and fall into His arms. And when the relief of safety merges into joy of appreciation you will find strength to conquer.

"Behold, the Lord God will help me..." Isaiah 50:7

He brought me... 

"He brought me to the banqueting house, and His banner over me was love" Song of Solomon 2:4

​He brought me...
​He didn't ask me to meet Him there. He didn't ask me to meet Him half-way there. No. He came to get me and take me there. He brought me.

​to the banqueting house...
a place of joy. A place of provision. A place of delight. A place where others would see that I was with Him. His arm leading me.

And His banner over me...
​Not a flag flying over the top of me; but like the winner of a beauty pageant wears her banner across her heart...His banner lies across (over) my heart...

​was love...
​Obvious love. He is mine and I am His. He is proud to call me His. And I am proud to call Him mine. Love.

​Now go to the song - Song of Solomon on the Listen to the Music page, and hear with new ears...HIS voice speaking to you. :-)