Thursday, August 25, 2011


The world shouts at you from all angles! "You're not smart enough, tall enough, skinny enough, strong enough, beautiful enough, rich enough." The list goes on and on and on....The advertisements and magazine covers are filled with image boosting suggestions.  So how DO you measure up? Do you find yourself questioning your value and self worth?  Do you find yourself in 'competition' with others trying to do what they do, be who they are, look like they look, or have what they have?

I found myself pondering some of these questions about myself as my family and I went on a cruise vacation recently. There I sat poolside watching as people frolicked about the ship's deck in their various styles of bathing attire. I found my eye settling on one particularly attractive young woman who did not appear to possess a single flaw in her outward appearance. She was petite with perfect proportions and had flawless skin.  Not a dimple of cellulite nor a wrinkle or pimple to be seen. Her skin seemed as silk. Her thick dark hair framed her attractive face with almond-shaped eyes and puckering lips just beautifully. No freckles, no veins, no sunburn. And her swimsuit seemed as though it were tailor-made for her. A "Wow" moment!

Then my mind wandered reluctantly to my aging frame. Yes, time is slowly leaving its mark in one way or another.  I started to feel depressed, to feel sad for the youth I had squandered and the beauty I had taken for granted.  Then I truly heard a still, small voice amongst the swimmers' hoopla whispering to me....  "Your body tells a story. You have truly lived and experienced life while learning along the way. Your history shows in lessons learned in many ways. After all, I measure your worth from your inward beauty and how that beauty manifests itself to others for My glory."  Another "Wow" moment!

We've all heard that beauty is fading and fleeting. Physical, outward beauty, that is. And, the statement is so very true. We are on the fast track when it comes to aging as our time here is so very short. So how do we evaluate beauty?  Our pop culture has defined beauty as being young and thin with flawless skin. Fashion models have become role models and extreme dieting and exercise has taken the place of overall health and fitness.

Matthew 6:19-22
Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

It really comes down to whether or not we are focused on the outward self vs. the inward self and two things: fruit or fear.  Are you bearing good fruit for Him, acknowledging Him as Lord of your life and surrendering to His perfect will for you or are you seeking approval and acceptance from a world with a warped view of what you should look like, who you should be and how you should spend your time?  It's about measuring your worth in terms of:

  • my figure in Inches v. my moral Integrity;
  • the amount of Creases I possess v. the godly Character I am cultivating;
  • the number of Wrinkles I can count v. my daily Walk with Christ;
  • how much time I need to spend upon Toning v. the amount of Time spent with MY Creator, my reason for existence;
  • how Smooth my skin appears v. the Sacrifices I am making daily for His glory;
  • how Firm my thighs are and how Flat my stomach is v. how much has my Faith increased this month; and
  • the spider Veins from carrying children or experiencing injury v. the Victory that I have in Christ that will last through all eternity.

You could make a list such as the above for any scenario whether it be time, money, social status, possessions or career.

So those creeping crows' feet around my eyes tell a story about emotions--happiness, sadness, stress--with smiles, laughter, frowns, grimaces, and winks in times of joy and sorrow.  Those slowly appearing sun spots  and wrinkles remind me of the idol I spent too much of my teenage years worshiping--the sun--and how overindulgence (sometimes in the pursuit of outward beauty) has its consequences. Those tiny, broken veins and new figure remind me of the joy I experienced in conceiving and carrying my children, and bringing them into this world. Truly the most precious gifts ever received. The scars on my knee remind of God's deliverance in an accident where the car could have just as easily run me over but instead hit my bike and sent me flying through the air to a soft landing with a few scrapes and one tiny broken bone. My slowly greying hair is a reflection of wisdom from a life lived and a crown of glory in living for Him. You get the picture. Outwardly, my body tells a story and it is His story as He has been with me every step of the way.  The outward story is a reflection of the work that He is doing inwardly in me to make me His in every way.

 Romans 8:10  
If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness.

Romans 8:23
And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body.

1 Corinthians 15:42-44
So also is the resurrection of the dead. The body is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption

Should you take care of your fleshly body? Absolutely!  As it is the temple of His Holy Spirit, we are instructed to guard it watching what we put in and do with this temporary tabernacle of God.  But, how far do we go?  What is your personal definition of beauty?  What is God's definition of beauty? Beauty, too, can become an idol.

1 Peter 3:3-4
Your adornment must not be merely external—braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. 

This skin I'm wearing now is only temporary. My spirit, in Christ, will last for all time. I take true comfort in that fact. I do eagerly await my spiritual body that will be incorruptible and accompany me through eternity and free me from these fleshly chains.  However, until the return of Jesus Christ our King, I will find joy in the reassurance that He loves and sees beauty in the person I'm becoming while abiding in Him. The inward person. I will find approval and acceptance in the arms of a loving God whose unconditional love abounds despite my physical, emotional and spiritual flaws.  He is making me truly, eternally beautiful through His wisdom and guidance using life's experiences along the way.  A pure beauty.  An eternal beauty.  He is telling a story through me.  What more could I possibly ask for....?!

Thursday, July 7, 2011


I'm on my way to a gathering of moms who are having a rare night away from their families to relax and encourage one another. I'm hosting the gathering at another mom's home. I'm late. I am very, very tired and a bit cranky. (And, I can admit I do have a tendency to say 'yes' more than 'no' when it comes to service and volunteering. I've been known to be a 'Martha'. So much for relaxing.)

While driving along, I can sense myself starting to inwardly hyperventilate as I mull over the calendar before me in my mind. 'Why do I let myself get into these predicaments?!" I shout to myself.  After all, I am a planner by nature and consider myself to be a fairly organized individual overall. I organize and plan menus and meals, schooling schedules and lesson plans, extracurricular activities, family outings and vacations, chore charts, church activities, birthday parties and so on.  And, most events go off without a hitch as planned. Yet here I sit feeling somewhat out of control and overwhelmed by the events on my plate. I'm wondering how I am going to make it through the next month without becoming stressed out!

I plead for assistance from His Spirit as I know I CANNOT make it through this evening relying on my own strength. Resentment is seeping in. Fatigue is creeping in. I will be a grump and a grumbler.  Crying out to Him in repentance for my inability to adjust, for the poor attitude of my heart, for my whining and complaining, I asked for His strength to sustain me in my weakness, His Spirit to set me heart in a place that glorifies Him......

Did He hear? Yes.  Did He answer? Yes!  It was if He gave me a beautiful scoop of delicious ice cream for dessert to finish of the evening (and it was the kind that didn't stick to my hips)!  As I drove home, I thanked Him for pulling me through yet another anxious situation. In His love and grace, He accommodated me. He answered all my prayers: a heart of love, physical stamina and spiritual strength in mind and spirit. And, it got me thinking....

'Busy' truly seems to be the 'buzz' word of the 21st century. You ask someone you haven't seen in a while "So, how are you?" And, they always reply "Good. Busy!" Modern technology has seemingly made life 'easier' and allowed us to cram more items on our 'to do' lists each day. Supposedly, all this busyness will make us more accomplished, productive, and successful.

Hmmm.....  I think I beginning to catch on fully to this deception! I am determined to go counter culture, go back in time in a sense, and rebel against this popular trend and be relaxed, stress free, meditative, 'unbusy'. I want to be....'in the world but not of the world!'  That doesn't just include the latest fashion craze, religious slant or trendy food.  As a Christian who is professing to be not only a believer but also a follower of 'The Way',  I should be living a way of life that looks very different from that of being 'busy.'  Let's take a look in His Word:

Cease striving (be still)  and know that I am God.  Psalm 46:10

Rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him; Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way,
Because of the man who carries out wicked schemes. 
Psalm 37:7

And others are the ones on whom seed was sown among the thorns; these are the ones who have heard the word,  but the worries of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it becomes unfruitfulMark 4:18-20

For what does a man get in all his labor and in his striving with which he labors under the sun?  Because all his days his task is painful and grievous; even at night his mind does not rest. This too is vanity.  Ecclesiastes 2:22-23

Ah, ha! Satan deceives and distracts. He disguises himself and his temptations as good. ('You shall not surely die." he says to Eve in the Garden. We know how that story ended...) So, he whispers, "[insert your name here], do you want to feel and be more successful?  Do you want to win friends and influence people? Well," Satan implies, "the more you have on your 'to do' list, the more popular and accomplished you will be in today's world.  The more activities you have scheduled on your calendar, the more fulfilling your life will become giving you a sense of purpose. The more you volunteer and serve, the more favor you will find with God....?!"

In reality, Satan is a thief, a liar and a joy killer! He robs us of our precious gift of time as we run to and fro from home, to class, to event, to job, to activity. He tells us we will be living out our purpose as we cram our schedules full each day.  He kills the joy in everyday living by filling it with stress and pressure to perform instead of providing opportunities for love and relationships. He convinces us that it is the right thing to do and we must do it to experience the fullness of life. He implies that, in order to receive love and favor from the Almighty, we must earn it by serving, serving, and more serving rather than following God's lead and accepting His love and grace. Unfortunately, the devil's most important deception is influencing us to busy ourselves and be distracted from spending time in God's Word and at His feet on a daily basis! Let us stop, look to Him, and listen....

Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house.  And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word.  But Martha was distracted with all her preparations; and she came up to Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to do all the serving alone? Then tell her to help me.”  But the Lord answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things;  but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:38-42

Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.  Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.  For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”  Matthew 11:28-30

God does not measure us by tasks accomplished, events attended, items checked off our 'to do' lists, or acts of service. He loves us despite our weaknesses and failures. He desires that intimate relationship with us that spending time with Him on a regular basis will provide.  That means in both quantity as well as quality! He wants us to listen to His still small voice, seek His will and follow His lead no matter what the circumstance. Choices come to us each day; we should seek godly wisdom and council in making those choices. Ask God how to spend your time today, where to spend your money, what classes to enroll your children in, and where to best serve Him. His purpose for you is where you should be spending your time and your energy!

 Then He said, “Go out, and stand on the mountain before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake;  and after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.   So it was, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood in the entrance of the cave. Suddenly a voice came to him, and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”  1 Kings 19:11-13

Okay, slight detour...back to my drive home.  While mulling the evening's events over in my mind, I began to realize and remember all the little things that He had done for me that day to free up my calendar and give me more breathing room. Apparently, I was TOO BUSY being stressed on the way to my meeting to think of and remember the changes.  Things for which I hadn't prayed but crowded my schedule causing anxiety.  He moved appointments and dropped or postponed activities until a more convenient time. None of these changes were initiated by me. Suddenly, I felt a huge weight removed from my being. A weight that I had placed there myself. And yet, He saw fit, out of His mercy and goodness, to help me though I hadn't even asked....because He knows the end from the beginning.  He is a God of details. He is love! That fabulous scoop of ice cream He gifted me with earlier now had whipped cream and sprinkles on top!

God is truly good ALL the time!  Don't be deceived! Let go and give your schedule to God. Let Him have ALL of you. My prayer for you is that you let Him fill your cup each day in every way so that you find true fulfillment in Him as He accomplishes His purpose through and in YOU! And, maybe, just maybe, you'll get a cherry on top!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


When circumstances allow, I love to take walks around my little neighborhood to feel the sun on my face, the wind swirling around me, stretch my limbs and get my heart pumping a bit.  (It also serves to remind me of the endlessness and timelessness of our Creator.) The neighborhood overlooks a deep, wide canyon and maintains glorious views of the surrounding hills mountains.  These walks often refresh and strengthen my mind, body and spirit as I use them as exercise in a spiritual sense as well as  physically.

One winter's day not too long ago, I decided to venture out for a few minutes to recharge my batteries (which often need recharging!). On this particularly bright day, I was struck as to how barren the trees were that lined my path.  Though it was getting close to the first day of spring, not a bud was sprouting on most of the limbs.  They appeared strangely stark (you know, that dullish brown twiggy look) against the clear brilliant blue of the sky.  It was almost as if they didn't realize what time of year was approaching and needed a jump start.

Then I saw it. In the distance, a flash of color caught my eye. I kept walking. I kept gazing through the dullness of the other branches looking for the source of the bright color.  Slowly it came into view.  It was a tree that was fully in bloom!  It had buds, it had blossoms, it had leaves!  The sunlight played off of the fuchsia colored blossoms making it look as though the tree were almost on fire!

It stood out in the crowd. This tree didn't blend in like the others. And, it was beautiful. It was spectacular. Somehow, out of the hard ground and with the scarcity of sunlight in winter, this tree found its inward beauty and displayed it for all to see. It dug its roots deep into the earth and found the nutrients it needed for that moment.  It stretched its limbs upward as far as it could gathering as much daylight as was available to fuel its wonderful colors. It took what it could find and used them gloriously. The other trees and bushes simply blended into the landscape in a monotone of color and shape.

It occurred to me that as I walk this journey through life, I should be as vibrant as the tree. I should stand out in the crowd. I should be different than all the others. Not because of the external but the internal. Not of the flesh but of the spirit. Not because of the world but because of Christ living in me and the power of His Spirit!

1 Corinthians 2:12
Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.

How we strive to be different in our society yet all end up being the same! Same clothes, same jewelry, same homes, same cars.  Same schools, same sports, same careers. We all 'want' what the other has already and continually strive to make it so. We busy ourselves with comparing ourselves with others.  We define our success in terms of the tangible, worldly standards even though they are temporary, fading, and change moment by moment.

Our loving God did not create us all the same; He created us with unique gifts, talents, and a purpose in the life to glorify Him.  Yet we squelch our uniqueness and Him in an attempt to 'fit in', to be 'accepted', to be 'popular', to be 'cool', to be 'rich' and define ourselves in comparison to others. And, we always seem to fall short of the mark, don't we? We use worldly standards rather than the divine with which there is no limit.  We prefer the comfort of measuring our 'success' in terms of what we have, what we wear and what we do rather than who we are and what we can do for others and for Him

Romans 12:2  And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

We should glow with His light and His glory from within. We should seize the opportunity to be unique in our purpose in order to fulfill the destiny He has laid out for us seeking it in all its fullness. We should dig our roots deep into His Word daily and bathe in His life-giving water.  We should stretch our limbs upward in praise, in prayer, and in meditation continually seeking to know Him more and to bask in His life-giving light. We should find strength and hope in our dependance upon Him as He is unwavering. We should shine knowing our completeness and peace comes only from knowing Him and following where He leads.

John 14:27
Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

James 2:5
Listen, my beloved brethren: Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?

And, people should notice. People will notice.  They may not always like the difference or understand the difference but they will notice.  You may not be popular because of the difference.  You may not become famous or wealthy or be 'in style' because of the difference. Others may make fun of you because of the difference, not include you in their social circle, or invite you to go on vacation with them.  Your modesty, manners and unselfishness may be considered unbelievable or old fashioned!

John 15:19
If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.

John 1:10
He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him.

And, alleluia! Your life will make sense.  You'll stop striving and start living. You will see things in a new light bringing new meaning for yourself and others.  Your success will be measured and stored for an eternal purpose. That purpose will mean more than anything in this world ever could.  You will dine with Him at His table. Oh, what a feast it will be!

And, someone will take notice of you, in the here and now.  Someone will notice the difference. You will stand out in the crowd.  That someone just might ask you why you are so different.  And, to Him, that someone makes all the difference!

I don't know about you, but I want to be just like that tree.....  Be radiant!

Psalm 20:4
May He grant you according to your heart’s desire,And fulfill all your purpose.

Luke 4:43
but He said to them, “I must preach the kingdom of God to the other cities also, because for this purpose I have been sent.”

Acts 26:16
But rise and stand on your feet; for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to make you a minister and a witness both of the things which you have seen and of the things which I will yet reveal to you.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Yesterday, Today, and Forever

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever."  Hebrews 13:8

The woman on the barge was hot and tired. The sweat was beginning to bead up on her brow and upper lip. Her arms ached and her feet were sore, hot and starting to swell. She was working hard in the galley both cooking and cleaning.  Though somewhat strained, feeling thirsty and in need of rest, she was doing a good job and felt comfortable at her tasks.  Nonetheless, she sensed her mind, body and spirit crying out for repose from her labors.

The woman turned to her left and there stood a man, partially in shadow, who seemed familiar but she couldn’t place the familiarity. His face was not clearly in view. He placed his hand gently upon her shoulder and smiled. She felt a strong sense of his reassurance for a job well done and turned back to her work feeling the need to rest more urgently than before. Again, this time to her right, the woman felt a presence and again the same man was there beside her smiling at her. His face was clearer yet still remained unrecognizable. He motioned for her to come to him and beckoned that she stand beside him at the door of the galley facing the outside.  There they saw, through the open doorway, another large ship slowly departing from the dock and on its upper deck sat a dear friend. The tired woman called out to her, waved frantically at her friend trying to gain her attention, and smiled but her friend never turned to look;  her friend remained focused in the opposite direction that her ship was taking her.  With a heavy heart and her eyes brimmed with tears, the woman turned to the man to express her deep sense of loss and grief.

She gazed up at the man beside her suddenly feeling a tremendous sense of love and hope.  He took her hand. His hands were warm, his eyes were full of reassurance, and his smile was one of confidence.  The sadness suddenly washed from her!  In an instant, they were standing on the marble floor of a home with many rooms, windows, hallways and alcoves. She was barefoot; the stone felt smooth, cool and soothing under her hot, tired feet. Relaxation flooded her body. There was a gentle breeze blowing around them and the curtains, long and flowing, were dancing in the wind. The woman felt total peace and calm as her fatigue melted away.

The kind man led her to and through several rooms where others were relaxing, reading, having quiet conversation, or napping.  They then came to an oversized doorway that opened up onto a small patio and garden area, followed by a narrow road with a fence and gate on the other side. Beyond the gate there was a stony pathway that continued on for a short distance, leading into an expansive, lush green lawn. And, far off there was an extremely large fountain whose water flowed continuously and the color matched the clear brilliant blue of the sky.  Both the lawn and the sky seemed to go on forever. It was the most beautiful sight the woman had ever seen.

The man gently took her by the hand and said. “The path that lies before you is a rocky one. Would you like to put your shoes back on?” She decidedly said, “No, I think I can make it. It will be alright. With you, everything will be alright.” and He smiled at her and said “Yes, it will.” and slowly led her by the hand toward the garden path. The once tired, worn out worker felt strength, power and healing working their courses through her as she stepped out onto the path with Him.

To some of you, this story may sound familiar. Perhaps you are that woman. Maybe you recognize the symbolism of the Narrow Gate, the Living Water, the Holy Ground, and the Holy Spirit among others. I recognized it, too, when I woke up early one morning not long ago. God, through His faithfulness and love, gave me this dream as a gift during a time when I was intensely doubting myself and struggling with temptation. I was that woman.

In His infinite love and wisdom, my Redeemer was kind enough to send me a gentle reminder of many things:  1) That faith with works must come from a pure heart and a desire to serve Him in love relying  fully upon Him and His perfect will and not be done to please others; 2) He will equip us with what we need when we need it in order to accomplish His purpose 3) He is ever present, constantly watching and loves and cares for me deeply not wanting me to labor in vain and to find true rest in Him; 4) He grieves as I do over those who have turned away but has not given up on them and uses them as a reminder to us as to what it means to remain faithful; 5) He desires for me to rest in His house daily, wanting me to spend time with Him, away from the physical burdens of this world, both now and in the future; 6) His Spirit is always available to me but I must seek it earnestly; and 7) His living water and His gift of eternal life should be the focus of my daily walk enabling me to withstand the difficulties in which He, His Holy Presence, never, ever leaves my side.

I pray for you to find time for Him, at His feet and in His Word, daily. I pray that you truly seek His will about your own life in all things. Let us make it and Him and priority and the focus of our lives continually seeking ever possible moment to grow closer to Him.  May we continue 'to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ....." He created each one of us with a specific purpose in Him; let us truly seek to fulfill His purpose in Him and for Him! He is there for you and will supply for your every need. Remember HE IS the same yesterday, today and forever!  That promise is one you can count on!

"Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain."
1 Cor 15:58

 For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; ‘he will lead them to springs of living water.’[a] ‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.’[b]   Revelation 7:17

"Then God spoke to Israel in the visions of the night, and said, “Jacob, Jacob!”And he said, “Here I am.”' 
Genesis 46:2

“Now a word was secretly brought to me,  And my ear received a whisper of it. In disquieting thoughts from the visions of the night, When deep sleep falls on men." 
Job 4:12 -13

"And it shall come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your old men shall dream dreams, Your young men shall see visions."  Joel 2:28

" God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged.  We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain,  where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf.  Hebrews 6:18-20

Sunday, March 13, 2011


Some trials last a day, some a week, some a month and some last more years than we care to count. The latter is the case with my son who, in his younger days, experienced a relentless struggle for and against sleep. In his youth, he was a child that was wired, since his birth, with a desire to stay awake and would do anything to make it so. His sleeplessness took many forms over the years from numerous unnecessary night feedings as he looked for comfort and companionship as a baby to his own method of self-soothing by moaning and singing while rocking on his hands and knees.

No matter how much we, as loving parents, tried to lull him into sleep, convincing him of our constant presence and protection, my darling child was never convinced that we meant what we said. No manner of logic would appeal to him. No matter how many opportunities we had to gain his trust, they come back void. And, still, even as he got older, we continued to struggle with my son's sleep issues as it affected his relationships, his schooling, and his view of the world around him.

As the years pass and we continued to pray, study and read about this issue, the words 'separation' and 'fear' have came to the forefront. Fear of the dark and fear of separation from others or being alone. Fear of the unexpected and unpredictable. My son didn't accept the reassurance that we were near and would come to his aide. He didn't fully trust the immeasurable love we have for him as our son. He didn't want to be alone, especially in the dark, feeling abandoned, uncertain of what will happen, and unable to control his environment.

Recently, God in His still small voice whispered in my ear saying 'And, just how much do you trust Me? How much do you trust me when you feel alone and as if no one cares? How much do you trust me in the dark , uncertain places of your life? How much do you trust Me when you realize how little control you have over your circumstance?" He reminded me of His Word, transcending through all time, from Isaiah 41:13 "For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do no fear; I will help you." and Psalm 9:10 "Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you".

I must confess that I am often afraid of the dark and lonely places in my life. Being an only child and having lost my parents, loneliness, at times, engulfs me. I find myself more fearful of being separated from my husband and children. In those moments, I know that I do not fully trust my Creator to provide His infinite love, provision, or protection as He promises. He gave His perfect Son, the Light of the world, to rescue me from the darkness yet, often I still hold on to the things of the past, the more comfortable places and old habits, to find solace, rather than choosing to walk in His light and focusing on a future with Him.

Christ came not only to rescue me from certain death but to redeem me from the snare of fear and lies with which Satan binds me. Paul reminds me of this release in Romans 8:15 stating " For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”

Satan desires to entrap me in doubting the Word of the Lord and His faithfulness. Christ wants to release me by transforming me into His image. Jesus was at peace in body, mind and in spirit throughout His earthly journey as He focused on the will of His Father. When the storm raged around the apostles and their boat, Jesus slept. When He was alone for forty days in the wilderness, Jesus never doubted that God was with Him. He gave thanks for the meager food presented to feed 5,000 never doubting that His Father would provide. Jesus kept his eye on the prize at all times.

It was both an exhausting and heartbreaking journey for our sweet son and us. Yet, we were in the battle together; I, too, never left him nor forsook him. I did what I could to help him; however, his battle with fears of darkness and being alone was ultimately his alone to fight. He had to learn to trust, as do I, that God's word is true and pure. He had to believe with his entire being, as I must, that God keeps His promises, and continue to maintain his faith in things yet unseen. We both must truly die to ourselves daily and our own desire to be in control, fully surrendering to our heavenly Father. A tough battle for both of us, especially for a child, but one that will, in the long run, make us more like our Savior, Lord and King. No manner of self soothing will take His place. Nothing can fill the voids in our lives like His promise of unconditional love, care, and deliverance. His will is perfect.

In the words of Paul, '... in all these things, we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels or demons, neither the present or the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.' Romans 8:37-39

In this walk of faith and trust, let us pick up our shields of faith and arm ourselves with His sword of truth and become more than conquerors in His mighty name!

Thursday, March 10, 2011


WHO do you need today? WHAT do you need today? There is NOTHING He can't do! No problem too large for Him to handle, no need too small for Him to take care of, no cup too big for Him to fill. Have confidence in Him and have confidence, God-confidence, that you can do anything with Him according to His purpose for you!

Without Him, we are nothing. With Him, we are in need of nothing.
John 15:5 "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.

Have you tabernacled with Him today?
James 4:8 "Draw near to God and He will draw near to you."

Have you surrendered your desires for the treasures He has waiting for you?
Mark 10:21 "Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, 'One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.'

Have you asked Him for help lately or are you trying to do this thing on your own?
John 15:7 "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you."

Does it seem that what you are facing is just too difficult to bear?
2 Corinthians 4:17 "For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory...,"

1 Corinthians 10:13
"No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it."

James 1:12
"Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him."

Do you believe Him and His promises?
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Do you doubt His love for you?
John 14:23
Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.

1 Timothy 1:14
And the grace of our Lord was exceedingly abundant, with faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.

Whatever it is that is distancing you from Him, whatever it is that is weighing heavily upon your mind and heart, whatever you think you are incapable of doing.... Christ Jesus is the bridge. Give it all to Him. Leave it at His feet. He sees all things from the end to the beginning. He is your strength. He has the answers.

Matthew 14:27
But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.”

Joshua 1:9
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”

Will you put Him in the drivers' seat? You won't regret it!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


For today, let us place no limits on ourselves in being willing to step outside our comfort zones for the benefit of others.

For today, let us place no boundaries on our love for others whether they be our family, our friends, our neighbor, the poor, the selfish, or the hurting.

For today, let us free ourselves from having expectations of others and expect more from ourselves.

For today, let us truly ask ourselves what we would and should do if there is no tomorrow, embrace it, and live it.

For today, let us show a kindness or give a gift to someone who least expects or deserves it.

For today, let us live our lives for someone else rather than for ourselves.

For today, let us give more than we take, listen more than we talk, and share more than we borrow.

For today, let us use the gift of time toward things of long lasting purpose and legacy rather than on entertainment remembering that time is a most precious gift and, once used, we never ever get it back.

For today, let us give Him this day fully trusting Him to set our path and see what wonderful things He has in store for us rather than planning every moment and filling our lives with busyness.

For today, let us stop striving and stressing to be at the 'top' of the heap in things that are temporary and impersonal; let us start living with simplicity and emphasis on the lasting relationships in our lives.

For today, let us see this gift of life through God's eyes and humbly ask Him to give us His eternal perspective on all things and hope in the life to come.

James 4:13 - Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”; 14 whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. 15 Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.”

Proverbs 16:7 - When a man’s ways please the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.

Matthew 6:19 - “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.