IMPORTANT: Compliance with GDPR Regulation

Dear Friend,

I know you have been bombarded lately with these notices but everyone, including me, is trying to be compliant with the new EU rules on privacy. Bottom line, you will need to give me permission if you’d like to continue receiving my blog, newsletters, giveaway offers, emails, and all correspondence from me.

If you are subscribed to my blog, Matters of the Heart, via Networked Blogs or any other venue, please contact Networked Blogs or your subscription venue and notify them that you wish to continue receiving my emails. Unless you do so, you will be removed from my mailing list. You may have already received a notice from Networked Blogs or your RSS feed regarding updating your subscription. If so, please respond if you wish to continue receiving my blog posts. Again, if you do not respond, you will be removed from my mailing list. 

If you subscribed to my monthly Author Newsletter through MailChimp, you should have received a notice whereby you submitted your approval to remain subscribed to MailChimp.  

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) goes into effect May 25 and requires me to obtain your explicit consent to send you my emails, newsletters, announcements, giveaway offers, and any other information. I apologize for the inconvenience, and I trust you understand my need to do this in order to continue to minister to you. 

Even if you are in the United States or non-EU countries, I need you to opt-in since I have no way of knowing where an email address originates. Sadly, if I don’t hear from you, your email address will be deleted and you will no longer receive my newsletters or other information. 

To recap: To continue receiving my blog posts, you will need to notify Networked Blogs, your RSS feed or other subscription venue  by May 24th. To continue receiving my monthly Author Newsletter, you will need to respond to the request from MailChimp to stay subscribed. If you do not do so, your name will be removed from my mailing lists. 

You will notice that I have added my PRIVACY POLICY on each page of my website. 

Thank you very much for your kind cooperation. I deeply appreciate it. If you have any questions, please let me know.

Many Blessings,

MaryAnn Diorio

ENDURING TO THE END

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines 
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

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NOTE TO MY READERS:  This will be my last blog post for the time being. I am seeking God as to what direction to take in the future and will notify you if I resume writing this blog. Thank you for your prayers.

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In Matthew 24: 13, Jesus said this: “…the one who endures to the end will be saved.” What did Jesus mean by these words? How should we apply them to our lives today?

The word “endure” comes from the Latin word “indurare” which means “to harden.” What Jesus was saying here is that the one who hardens himself against difficulties and stands firm in the midst of them, that one will be saved.

This verse is part of what is called Christ’s Olivet Discourse, the famous sermon He gave on the Mount of Olives in which He explained to His disciples details about the end times.  Jesus was warning that persecution would arise and many so-called professing Christians would turn away from the faith, thereby revealing the true condition of their hearts. 

So, what does it mean to endure to the end? Here are some considerations:


1–To endure to the end means to stand firmly for the Bible in the face of false teaching. 
Apostasy is alive and well in our country and throughout the world. Many denominations that were once bulwarks of Christianity have now turned traitor to the Bible and its inerrancy and have subscribed to false doctrines straight from the pit of hell.

2–To endure to the end means to stand firmly for Christ in the face of a brazenly sinful society.  What was once considered shameful is now brazenly practiced openly as our world falls ever more deeply into depravity. He who endures to the end will remain pure in a culture that reeks with sin.

3–To endure to the end means to stand firmly for Christ in the face of ridicule, hatred, and persecution. Day by day, we are witnessing increasing opposition to Christianity and Christians. Whether it be in our governmental system, our educational system, or our societal system, Christians are being marginalized at an alarming rate. Many have been persecuted to the point of death. 

In these last days, Satan is pulling out all the stops in his vicious attempt to get Christ-Followers to give up and quit. DON’T DO IT!  Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.

Let me encourage you with these words from Galatians 5: 1: “Stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.”  How do we stand firm? Ephesians 6: 10 tells us how: “Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.”

It is only by the Lord’s power that we will be able to endure to the end. Remain in Him. This is His promise to us in 1 Corinthians 1; 8: “He will also keep you firm to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Maranatha!  Come, Lord Jesus! Come soon!

Now, it’s YOUR turn: What struggles are you facing in your journey to endure to the end? Please leave your valued comments in the box below.

TWEETABLE:  “Enduring to the End” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio (CLICK TO TWEET).

NEW YOU-TUBE SERIES:  Check out my new You-Tube series, YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!, based on my popular book by the same title.  


God designed you for greatness in Him. Discover the authority and power you have as a Christ-Follower! Get your copy of YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!

BUY NOW!

  
 
 
 
 
 
 ____________________________________________________________________

The Italian Chronicles Trilogy is now available in its entirety. Will Maria Landro Tonetta allow God to turn the horrific sorrows of her life into great joy? Read this page-turning series to find out! Makes a great gift for any occasion!

 Book 1: The Madonna of Pisano    Book 2: A Sicilian Farewell    Book 3: Return to Bella Terra

_____________________________________________________________________

If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

“Sex and Soul Ties”

“Don’t Let Satan Play Your Pipes”

“How to Recognize a Controlling Spirit”

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

___________________________________________

Copyright 2018 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies. 

ARE DEMONS DESTROYING YOUR DESTINY?

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines 
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

“Matters of the Heart” is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to examine your heart and how to program your heart for success.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog via Facebook, click here. If you are not on Facebook or would prefer to subscribe via a different venue, please check the sidebar to the right for subscription options. Thank you!

____________________________________________________

We don’t hear much about demonic activity today, yet it is definitely going on, and at alarming rates. Perhaps you are a victim of it.

What is demonic activity? Simply put, demonic activity is the disruptive attempt of demonic spirits to divide and destroy you and everything that pertains to you. 

Let’s take a look at some facts about demons:

1–Demons do exist. Contrary to much current teaching, demons are real. Scripture provides abundant evidence of their existence in passages such as Ezekiel 28:18, Matthew 25: 41, and Revelation 12: 4.

Demons are a category of evil spirits who do Satan’s bidding in the earth. They are his evil “lackeys” who carry out his dirty work in the earth. It is generally believed that demons are the fallen angels who followed Satan when he rebelled against God and who, as a result, fell from Heaven with Satan. Some scholars, however, believe that demons may be the product of the union of fallen angels with the daughters of men, as recounted in Genesis 6: 4.

Satan (aka, the Devil) now has his headquarters in the Second Heaven, which is immediately above our firmament and under the Third Heaven where God and His angels dwell.  From the Second Heaven, Satan and the fallen angels give orders to demons to wreak havoc in the earth and upon individuals, particularly those who follow Jesus Christ. 

2–Demons have an agenda. That agenda is to carry out Satan’s instructions to destroy you, particularly if you are a follower of Jesus Christ. They do this in a variety of ways, but primarily through the tactic of “divide and conquer.” Their primary modus operandi is deception.

3–Demons have names. They are named according to their nature. For example, a spirit of anger is an evil spirit that tempts people to anger. A spirit of lust is an evil spirit that tempts people to lust. A lying spirit is an evil spirit that tempts people to lie. 

4–Demons seek to inhabit physical bodies, whether human or animal. Because demons are spirits without bodies, they continually seek either to inhabit a physical body or to attach themselves to one in order to express themselves in the earth. For example, an evil spirit of murder is powerless unless it has a body through which to murder.

4–Demons are the lowest in rank and power in Satan’s kingdom. They do not strategize. That function falls to Satan and his higher-ranking evil spirits who reside in the Second Heaven. Demons simply carry out on earth the orders that are given them by Satan and the fallen angels. 

5–Demons do not die. Because they are disembodied spirits, the same demons that were around thousands of years ago are still around today, tempting people to commit the same kinds of sins.

6–Demons operate through deception. Their goal is to keep their activity undercover so that people will fall into their traps. They present as good that which is evil. 

7–Demons attack in a variety of ways. Here are a few of them:

  • Sickness
  • Mental Illness
  • Twisted Communication
  • Spreading False Doctrine
  • Discouragement

8–Demons enter a life in a variety of ways. Here are some of them:

  • Through rebellion against God-ordained authority;
  • Through an anti-Biblical worldview (e.g., secular humanism, globalism, Mother Earth philosophies)
  • Through participation in New Age practices (e.g., yoga, martial arts, Eastern mysticism and meditation, goddess-worship); through the occult (séances and other Satanic rituals), and witchcraft (e.g., Wicca, the New Paganism, horoscopes, Ouija boards);
  • Through disobedience of the Word of God;
  • Through neglect in prayer, worship, and the study of God’s Word.

No one is immune to demonic attack. But Jesus said this in John 10: 10: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it more abundantly.” The key to resisting demonic activity is Jesus Christ. When you are in Christ, you have all the authority and power you need to drive out demons from your life. 

Remember this verse in 1 John 4: 4: “Greater is He Who is in you than he who is in the world.” HALLELUJAH!

Now, it’s YOUR turn: How do you deal with demonic attacks? Please leave your valued comment in the box below.

TWEETABLE:  “Are Demons Destroying Your Destiny? by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio (CLICK TO TWEET).

For additional resources on understanding demonic activity, you may wish to check out the following books:

101 Questions & Answers on Demon Powers by Dr. Lester Sumrall

Identifying the Hierarchy of Satan by Joy A. Schneider

Dealing with Hindering Spirits by Perry Stone

To be sure you don’t miss any of my future blog posts, you may wish to subscribe at http://www.networkedblogs.com/blog/maryanndiorioblog or through the feed of your choice.

NEW YOU-TUBE SERIES:  Check out my new You-Tube series, YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!, based on my popular book by the same title.  


God designed you for greatness in Him. Discover the authority and power you have as a Christ-Follower! Get your copy of YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!

BUY NOW!

  
 
 
 
 
 
 ____________________________________________________________________

The Italian Chronicles Trilogy is now available in its entirety. Will Maria Landro Tonetta allow God to turn the horrific sorrows of her life into great joy? Read this page-turning series to find out! Makes a great gift for any occasion!

 Book 1: The Madonna of Pisano    Book 2: A Sicilian Farewell    Book 3: Return to Bella Terra

_____________________________________________________________________

If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

“Sex and Soul Ties”

“Don’t Let Satan Play Your Pipes”

“How to Recognize a Controlling Spirit”

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

Matters of the Heart is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to discover what is in your heart and how to program your heart for success.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog via Facebook, click here. If you are not on Facebook or if you prefer to subscribe via another venue, you may do so by using any one of the other subscription options listed under the Networked Blog section in the sidebar on my website: www.maryanndiorio.com/blog. Thank you!

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

___________________________________________

Copyright 2018 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies. 

 

HOLDING ON TO HOPE

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines 
the course of your life.” ~ Proverbs 4:23

“Matters of the Heart” is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to examine your heart and how to program your heart for success.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog via Facebook, click here. If you are not on Facebook or would prefer to subscribe via a different venue, please check the sidebar to the right for subscription options. Thank you!

____________________________________________________

A young Christian friend of mine in her early twenties confided to me her great concern about the future.

“As a Christian, I know I shouldn’t be anxious,” she said, “and I feel so guilty that I am. But with all the horrible things going on in the world, I wonder if I’ll get to live a normal life. Will there even be a world by the time I’m ready to be married?”

My friend is not alone in her concern. Across our nation and throughout the world, people of all ages, including Christians, are doubtful and uncertain about the future. Perhaps you yourself are one of them.

If so, you too may be feeling guilty about your lack of confidence in the future. You know that Christ commands you not to worry about tomorrow, but you have difficulty obeying that command. What can you do?

Before we consider why we as Christians can face the future with confidence, let’s look at some factors that may be playing a major role in robbing us of this very hope.

Factor #1: WORLD EVENTS. Wherever we turn, the media bombards us with reports of disaster, destruction, and death. Wars and rumors of wars so overwhelm us that we find ourselves growing increasingly fearful and cynical about what lies ahead. In an age of sophisticated communication systems, we see close up the sin and suffering of an entire world. Such instant and constant bad news, magnified to global proportions, only fuels our sense of uneasiness and dread.

Despair, not hope, dominates the news. When the media, instead of God’s Word, becomes our primary source of mental and spiritual food, we build our lives on a foundation of fear.

Factor #2: PERSONAL PROBLEMS. Not only do world events trouble us, but personal trials also sap our hope. After nearly 25 years of climbing the corporate ladder of success, Jerry, a family friend, lost his job. At age 50, with two children in college, Jerry discovered that his ladder was leaning against the wrong wall. Shattered and defeated, he struggled with bouts of severe depression. After renewing his hope in Christ, however, Jerry found another job.

Perhaps you too, like Jerry, have lost your job or are facing financial challenges. Maybe health problems or poor family relationships are eroding your confidence. Whatever the case, personal problems can definitely rob you of hope for a better future.  

Factor #3: YOUR THOUGHT LIFE. We become what we think about. What we think about is the direct result of what we put into our minds. If we consume a steady mental diet of worry over our personal problems, it’s no wonder that we lose confidence in the future. The Bible tells us that as a man thinks in his heart, so is he (Proverbs 23:7 KJV).

If you continually sow thoughts of hopelessness into your heart, you will reap a crop of despair. If, on the other hand, you sow thoughts of hope, you will eventually reap a harvest of hope. What kind of thoughts are you sowing?

Factor #4: LOSS OF FOCUS ON JESUS CHRIST. Fear and anxiety about the future result when we take our eyes off Jesus, the One Who holds the future. Consider the Apostle Peter. When he stepped out of the boat onto the water, his eyes were focused on Jesus. The instant Peter took his eyes off Jesus and put them on his surroundings, he became filled with fear and began to sink.

This is exactly what we do when we focus on what’s happening around us rather than on the Word of God. When we allow our attitude about the future to be controlled by our circumstances instead of God’s Word, we exalt our circumstances above God. Putting circumstances above God is nothing short of idolatry.  

Idolatry is placing greater trust in something other than God, whether that “something” be money, self, or world events. To be anxious about the future is to place more trust in the negative situations around us than in God’s promise to take care of us. Are you placing more trust in the world’s word or in God’s Word?

Factor #5: LACK OF SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINE.   Unless we feed continually on the Scriptures, we cannot develop a strong sense of confidence in the future. The Bible states, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee” (Isaiah 26:3 KJV). When our minds are anchored in God, we will experience peace in the midst of every storm, knowing that God’s plans for us are “for good and not for evil, to give [us] a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11 TLB).           

Factor #6: YOUR COMFORT ZONE. Strange as it may seem, many of us Christians actually want to hold on to our fear about the future. Like a security blanket, it has become so much a part of our daily lives that we think we can’t function without it. After all, how can we call ourselves responsible if we don’t worry about the future?   There is a big difference between worrying about the future and being responsible in preparing for it. To worry about the future is to focus on our own strength as we face the future. To be responsible in preparing for the future is to rely on God’s strength.

A classic example of this dichotomy is the biblical account of the two sisters, Mary and Martha (Luke 10: 38-42 KJV). Martha was the worrier, the burden-bearer, the one who put the cares of this world above the care of her soul. Jesus said of her that she was “troubled about many things” (Luke 10:41 KJV).

Mary, on the other hand, had different priorities. She realized that the most important thing she could do was to sit at the feet of Jesus and listen to Him. Mary knew that if she filled her heart with God’s Word, she could make it through anything. Unlike Martha who relied on her own strength to face the challenges of life, Mary depended on God’s strength. Jesus said of Mary that she “hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her” (Luke 10:42 KJV).

Now that we’ve looked at some hope-stealers, let’s consider some reasons why we as Christians can be not only confident as we face the future, but joyful as well.

God has everything under control. He is the Lord and there is none else (Isaiah 45:18 KJV). As the Creator of the universe and everything in it, God knows the beginning and the end. Nothing can happen to us without His permission. No matter what life may bring, we can rest secure in the knowledge that God knows our needs and that He will meet them.

God is faithful. He does exactly what He says He will do: “For I am the Lord: I will speak, and the word that I shall speak shall come to pass” (Ezekiel 12:25 KJV). When God promises that the word He speaks shall come to pass, He means it. It doesn’t matter what the situation looks like.

When my younger daughter was an infant, she was diagnosed with an incurable illness. Upon hearing the doctor’s report, my husband and I were assailed by fear. But we chose to resist the attack by focusing on God’s Word that said our daughter was healed by the stripes of Jesus (I Peter 2:24 KJV).  

For several months, we clung to that verse with every fiber of our being because our daughter’s very life depended on it. Eventually, her symptoms completely disappeared, much to the amazement of her doctors. Today she is a healthy 35-year-old young woman wholeheartedly serving Jesus Christ.

God is love. Everything He does is motivated by love. As our Father, He is intimately involved in the lives of His children. He Himself says that He has numbered the very hairs of our heads (Matthew 10:30 KJV). Because God is love, we can trust that He will take care of us.

God is the God of hope. There can be no hope without God, for all hope is rooted in Him. By its very nature, hope looks to the future. As Christians, our hope is in Jesus Christ and in His promise of eternal life.

When my elder daughter was in college, she purchased a Christian lapel button that read “Just visiting.” That’s the attitude we should take about our stay on this earth. This is not our final destination. We know that a far better life awaits us beyond this one. When we focus on that future life, we can keep the problems of this earthly life in proper perspective, confident in the knowledge that “all things work together for good to them that love God” (Romans 8:28 KJV).

Hope is the anchor of the soul (Hebrews 6:19 KJV). Without it, we cannot fight the good fight of faith. In order to remain confident as we face the future, we must hold on to the hope that is set before us, namely Jesus Christ and the salvation He has provided. The battle has already been won. Therefore, we can rejoice as we face the future, knowing that for the children of God, the best is yet to be!

Now, it’s YOUR turn: Have you been finding it difficult to hold on to hope? If so, what are you doing about the challenges? Please leave your valued comment in the box below.

TWEETABLE:  “Holding On to Hope” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio (CLICK TO TWEET).

To be sure you don’t miss any of my future blog posts, you may wish to subscribe at http://www.networkedblogs.com/blog/maryanndiorioblog  or through the feed of your choice.

NEW YOU-TUBE SERIES:  Check out my new You-Tube series, YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!, based on my popular book by the same title.  


God designed you for greatness in Him. Discover the authority and power you have as a Christ-Follower! Get your copy of YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!

BUY NOW!

  
 
 
 
 ____________________________________________________________________

The Italian Chronicles Trilogy is now available in its entirety. Will Maria Landro Tonetta allow God to turn the horrific sorrows of her life into great joy? Read this page-turning series to find out! Makes a great gift for any occasion!

 Book 1: The Madonna of Pisano    Book 2: A Sicilian Farewell    Book 3: Return to Bella Terra

_____________________________________________________________________

If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

“15 Signs That We Are in the End Times-Part 1” 

“15 Signs That We Are in the End Times-Part 2”

#15 Signs That We Are in the End Times-Part 

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

Matters of the Heart is a weekly blog that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart, the issues we all face but sometimes don’t want to talk about. The heart is the programming center of our lives. What is programmed into our heart will affect every area of our lives. Learn how to discover what is in your heart and how to program your heart for success.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog via Facebook, click here. If you are not on Facebook or if you prefer to subscribe via another venue, you may do so by using any one of the other subscription options listed under the Networked Blog section in the sidebar on my website: www.maryanndiorio.com/blog. Thank you!

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

___________________________________________

Copyright 2018 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies. 

 

 

 

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YOUR INPUT REQUESTED

Dear Friends,

Because I want to be a good steward of time, I am considering making some changes to my blog and, possibly, discontinuing it altogether due to seeming lack of reader interest. I would appreciate your input. Please answer the following questions and return your replies by copying and pasting them into an email sent to drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com.  Please type the words “Blog Survey” in the subject line. Thank you!

1–Do you read each weekly blog post of Matters of the Heart?  YES, NO, or SOMETIMES?
If not, how often do you read the blog?  OFTEN, RARELY, or NEVER?

2–Do you find the topics relevant to your life?  YES, NO, or SOMETIMES?

3–Do you share the posts with others? YES, NO, or SOMETIMES?

Thank you very much for your kind help!

Dr. MaryAnn Diorio