Monday, December 22, 2014

The clouds are glowing pink and orange, reflecting the morning light of the sun. This is one of the things I treasure in my early morning quiet times.
Clouds – they are nothing but tiny droplets of water that gather together in a group of misty fluff. If there were only one drop reflecting the sun's light I would never see it, but when so many pull together it is a glorious sight to behold.
Do I reflect God's light in my daily life? Do I let His light and Love shine through me, like a droplet of water?
Do we, as Christians, join together in a chorus, a group, a cloud, as witnesses shouting our praises and reflecting the Love of God in the world?
We are on this earth for a just a moment in the span of all time; like the clouds, we are wisps that are quickly gone but during our time here, let's pull together. Let's gather as one and reflect His love in truly glorious and beautiful ways.
Join the angels saying Glory to God in the highest heaven and peace on earth!


Thank you for sunrises. Thank you for clouds and gentle rains. Let these simple things of nature remind me of the lesson you gave me this morning. As we prepare to celebrate Christmas, open our hearts to received and reflect your love in more glorious ways than we can imagine.  Open our ears to hear the angel voices so we can join in on their praises. I pray in Jesus holy name. Amen.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

We are getting our Christmas decorations out, slowly but surely.  The tree is up but we haven’t even strung the lights yet.  I have not set the Nativity up yet but our visiting elf has arrived, much to the kids delight.
I have been wondering about different practices and beliefs we hold.  Where do they come from and what do they really mean to me and my family?  When I get the decorating all done, does it point to different beliefs, do some clash with others or do they really come together in a picture of harmony?  Do my snowmen and reindeer draw away from the Christ child in the manger?  Does the lighted tree with all of its sparkly ornaments turn our attention away from God or remind us of God and his precious gift of love?
Even as I ponder these external things I am aware that I need to search my heart more.  Do I have discord and strife wrestling in my heart or is my heart covered with God love, bound together with him in perfect harmony?
My handbells concerts begin today and continue through the next couple of weeks.  I pray the chords and music will serve to remind me of this verse and of this call.  Let the music of the bells, and the music of my soul be clothed in love, binding us all together in God’s perfect harmony.


You know the strife and struggles in this world and the hearts of each of us.  I ask you to cover us in your love today.  Fill us and restore us in you.  Bind us together in love during this season of celebrating your love for us.  I pray for peace and harmony on this day.  Amen.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Many people ask how I can get up every morning and do a quiet time.  They tell me they could never do that.
I remember when I began my quiet times my kids still took naps so I could do it in the afternoon – that was great.  Once naps stopped happening I had to find a time when I could fit my quiet time in and it fit the easiest in the early morning.  I could never have done this on my own; it is through the strength and encouragement of the Lord that I continue this discipline.
Several months ago I began receiving nudges to start jogging.  I never liked running and so I ignored the first several nudges.  The Lord is persistent though so nudges continued and opportunities opened up; the path simply unfolded before me and the nudges continued.  When I started I knew I would never succeed.  I told my friends and the Lord that I could not do this.  I have received guidance and encouragement on every level and slowly but surely I have pressed on. There are still days when I have to talk myself through it; remembering this is a practice in discipline if nothing else.
I cannot help but to see the parallels in the physical training and the spiritual training I have been doing.  They each take a call.  Each one takes a response and they also require perseverance and drive.  I tell you all, these things do not come from me.  They come from the Lord. As I prepare to jog my first 5K in a couple of weeks I give thanks and praise to the Lord and I continue on in my training. 


You inspire me, you strengthen me, and you encourage me.  Thank you for pushing me beyond what I thought I could do in so many ways.  You gave all for me; I give all I can back to you.  May my life glorify your holy name.  Amen. 

Thursday, October 23, 2014

At face value these words seem odd.  Why would we boast in our weaknesses?
Maybe it is just me (I don’t think so) but I am always striving to do better, to be better.  My goal is always to live as Christ lived.  I am humbly reminded that I am not, nor can I ever be, perfect.  God did not create humans to be perfect; he created us with free will.  Even in Genesis he acknowledges the imperfection in
As I prayed over this verse it became clear to me once more that because of my weaknesses I need God.  Because of my weakness and sin, I make regular communion time with the Divine.  I am brought to my knees in his presence to receive forgiveness and grace.
He tells us that his grace is sufficient for us.  I am able to see his strength and power because I am weak and powerless without him.  I can boast because it is only through his grace that I am made strong.  I will stumble and fall.
The blessing is that he is ready to pour his amazing grace on me whenever I come for forgiveness.  I am weak but he is strong.  Yes, Jesus loves me!


Thank you for your love and grace.  I will never be strong without your strength in me.  Without you I cannot truly live.  Help me embrace my weakness so that I can fully embrace your strength and power.  Amen.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

There are a few kids’ songs about the wise man who built his house on the rock and the foolish man who built his house on the sand.  This morning I had one of those songs running through my head when I woke up.
Floods are so damaging; they destroy many homes each year.  Water seeps into every tiny space; even places we cannot see or never knew about.  We only discover that damage when the smell of mold penetrates the air around us.
Sin is like that too.  If we stand on a shifting foundation in our faith, the sin seeps through our hearts and souls like water in sand.  There is no stability and we are destroyed as easily as a sand castle in a big wave.
We need the strong foundation of Jesus.  We need deep rooted faith to hold us firm during the storms and floods of life.  Dig deep in your faith.  Stand firm on the Rock of our salvation.  He will uphold us; always and in all ways.


Storms are inevitable but rarely enjoyable.  As we experience them, let us feel your protection against the railing elements.  Open our ears and hearts to hear and act upon your words so our faith is built on solid rock.  You are the Rock and our salvation; I praise you and thank you this morning.  Amen.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Do I listen or do I simply hear?
My friends tease me a bit because I do not hear well on the phone.  If they want to talk with me it needs to be in person so I don’t misunderstand or just miss what they say.
We live in a world of noise and distractions.  We are barraged with sound at every turn and when there is quiet, we make our own sound because we don’t know quietness.
It takes intent to really listen.  It takes quiet and focus to move beyond the noise of our world.  When we take time to really listen, it is amazing what we can hear.
Samuel was just a boy serving under the priest Eli when he heard his call.  Like us, he didn’t understand what or who he was hearing until Eli told him.  Then, when the Lord called again Samuel was ready, he was listening.
The Lord calls to us as well.  Have you heard his voice calling and misunderstood it or missed it altogether?  I pray you will take time to sit and listen with intent.  I pray you hear his voice calling you into love and action.


Please forgive me for hearing and ignoring or not even hearing because of distraction or selfishness.  Open my ears and my heart to hear your voice, to hear your call and to be a willing servant like Samuel.  Help me truly say “speak, for your servant is listening.”  Amen.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Do I have what it takes to be a true follower, a true disciple of Jesus?
The twelve apostles dropped everything and followed him.  Whatever their livelihood was, whatever their lives held, they stopped it; they dropped it and followed Jesus.  I am willing to do the same?
I am receiving messages like this one form numerous sources.  It seems like everywhere I turn, everything I hear when I am listening says “Come and follow me.”  “Take up your cross and follow me.”
I am reading an old story about living like Jesus.  The characters in the story have agreed to live as Jesus would for one year regardless of cost.  They ask themselves “what would Jesus do?”
As I take this all in, I let it ruminate in my soul.  I know God is working and I know this is a time for me to wait in the Lord, so I wait, rest, and prepare.  Until then, I ask you to consider in your own life: “What would Jesus do?”


I do not know the plans you have for me but I know you will reveal them to me when the time is right.  Help me be ready; help me let go of my worldly desires and hold more tightly to your Spirit.  Help me grow into your true disciple.  Amen.

Friday, September 5, 2014

I do not run.
I remember years ago when I was a kid, my older sister was on the track team.  I went out with her a few times to jog or run and did not enjoy it one tiny bit.
I am training for a 5k run/walk.  I have had several nudges over the last couple of years to try jogging and have successfully pushed them away.  When this 5k came up there was another big nudge.  The person organizing it posted a training schedule if we wanted to jog or run.  My younger sister signed up to do the 5k as well and when I asked if she had any desire to jog any of it, she said she wanted to jog the whole thing.  Okay.
Yesterday I did day two of my training to jog a 5k.  I am taking this on as spiritual work.  It takes discipline and training to do a run.  It takes the proper equipment and tools to do it well.  This is no different than my spiritual life.  That takes discipline, training, and proper tools as well.
I pray I will keep my eyes on him, and true life, and health as I continue this training and discipline.  I do not want to focus on what I see in the mirror but what I feel in my heart.  I do not want accolades; I want to draw closer to God.


You know my heart.  Help me keep focused on you and my strength in you.  Keep my goal true; healthier body, mind, and spirit.  Through you and in you, I receive true life.  Amen.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Jesus taught us how to pray.  He prayed throughout his life and ministry.  He prayed with people and for people.  He prayed in crowds and by himself.
Paul reminds us to pray.  In his first letter to the Thessalonians he says “pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances...”  He rephrases what Jesus told them in this parable; pray always and don’t lose heart.
I like to think I have a strong faith but when I look at my hope in prayer, I question myself.  I have seen the power of prayer; I have heard and read countless stories about the power of prayer.  Why do I come into prayer with only a part of me then?
James also tells us that we do not receive because we do not ask, or we ask for selfish gain.  Then there is the story in the gospel of Mark about a man asking Jesus to heal his child and he cries “help my unbelief!”
I need to delve in to prayer in a different and deeper way.  I continue to strive to pray without ceasing, to pray with hope and to seek the glory of the Lord rather than my own.  Another facet of this life-long journey...


Help my unbelief!  I do not like to think I have unbelief but you know my heart better than I do, and you know there is self-doubt in my prayers.  Let these words of Jesus stay deep within me so that I hold on to them when I pray.  Keep all of these scriptures close to me, Thank you God!  Amen.

Monday, September 1, 2014

What do the hills really represent in this passage?
I always like looking to the “hills” from my home.  To me the mountains in the distance are a reminder of God’s strength and a place of peace and renewal.
When I think about climbing those mountains though I see the question rising, who will help me?  Climbing mountains can be arduous and challenging.  It can be dangerous, life-risking work.  The question becomes more insistent then; from where will my help come?
If the hills represent challenges or trials to overcome, it is comforting to know there is help.  Not just help from a knowing and kind person either.  My help comes from the Lord!  Whatever hill, whatever challenge I have to climb He can overcome it – he created it!  He knows it inside and out, every detail of its being.
I can think of no better guide than the Lord.  Whatever I face, whatever I go through, he is my help.  Thanks be to God!


Thank you for these verses of promise and comfort.  Thank you for the beauty of this world.  As I climb mountains, go through valleys, or sit on plateaus with you, help me see the beauty in the moments of peace and in the times of struggle.  I thank you for your promise to be with me, to help me, and to never let go.  I am ready, Lord.  Amen.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

There is a saying “that which doesn't kill us makes us stronger.”  However, I don’t think that is quite what James was saying in this passage.
I struggle with finding joy in my trials, let me tell you.  I lament, I grumble, I pout, and I whine.  The list of my poor behavior when being tested goes on but I need to keep up some kind of appearance, right?
Home school has always been a challenge; some days easier than others.  This year I have two kids to teach and it has been interesting, to say the least.  I am reminded, daily, that I do not understand boys very well.  I know my five year old boy is typical in that he cannot seem to sit still for more than a nanosecond and his attention span...  I do my best to teach while on the move but there are some things and sometimes we need to sit.  This is just one example, on the surface, of the trials I need to consider a joy, and I have it easy!
Seriously, I tuck these verses away in my heart knowing I will need them a lot.  Face trials with joy because they make us and our faith stronger.  I pray it be so.


How many times have I come asking forgiveness for my shortsightedness?  I cannot count them!  Your Word is my strength and I hold onto it for dear life.  Guide my thoughts, my actions, and my words so that, rather than laments, I spread joy to the world.  To your glory I pray.  Amen.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

I am such an “inside-the-box” person, just like the disciples were in this story.
So often I cannot imagine how to accomplish what is being asked of me by God.  Even as I write I ask why?  What real good could come from my continued writings, what am I really supposed to do?
The disciples clearly hear Jesus say “you give them something to eat.”  What?  How could we do that?  That makes no sense to us, we couldn't possibly...  Jesus gathers the meager stock of food they have and asks God to bless it.  With God’s blessing, a miracle takes place.
How often do I miss out because I do not allow God to work through me?  Do others miss out because of it?
As I put soup and canned fruit in my car, as I write my pondering on scripture, as I teach my kids, I ask for God’s blessings on these.  Now I need to listen and follow his lead, a miracle just might occur...


I cannot see as you see.  Please forgive my unwillingness to participate fully.  Make clear to me the path you have set before me and, Lord, please bless that path and all who are a part of it.  Use me as you will, to your glory.  Amen.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Yesterday I hosted the home school co-op at my house.  We are studying the human body in science and the project was to investigate our fingerprints.
As I think about the kids that were standing around my table I could tie together siblings pretty easily even if I did not know the kids.  Most of them look enough like each other that it is apparent who belongs with whom.  Still, none of us are the same.
Just as our fingerprints indicate, we are each individually created and formed by the Creator, the One True God.  No one shares an exact match of fingerprint with anyone else.  Even identical twins do not share these prints.  Like there are no two snowflakes exactly alike (as far as we know) there are no two people that are exactly alike.
Go into the day celebrating your individuality.  Praise the Lord for he has fearfully and wonderfully made you; you are unique and special!


Thank you for the reminder of your care and love for each of us through these verses and through our fingerprints.  Help us use our unique gifts and personalities to serve you.  Unite us together with our Christian brothers and sisters so we work together to further your kingdom until you come.  Amen.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

The tree leaves rustle with a breeze this morning.  The birds are not so vocal in their songs.  The sun brings light to the sky, first a glow of pink and quickly turning it to a light blue.  A new day has begun.
In this quiet moment, I am awe struck at the splendor of God.  The world is full of his creation and his splendor is shown throughout it.  I go through my days with blinders on, stuck in the mundane tasks of normalcy.  This morning I see, for a moment, the beauty of the earth, the beauty of his people, and the holy splendor of God all around me.
As I prepare to go worship in church, I hold this feeling of deep worship in my soul.  I remember all that God has done for me, with me, and through me and I tremble before him.  I do not tremble in fear, I tremble in awe.
I join the voices of nature; I join the voices across nations and throughout the earth, in praise and worship to this, the Almighty, the One True God.  All glory, laud, and honor to you Redeemer King!


I am at a loss for words this morning.  You know my heart and I know the Spirit intercedes where my language falls short.  Thank you for this time with you.  Thank you for leading me beside still waters and restoring my soul.  I praise your holy name and still tremble at the foot of your throne.  You are an awesome God and I forever worship you.  Amen.

Friday, August 22, 2014

I do not like the word grudge.
The word sounds dark and heavy to me; kind of dirty, like mud.
I like to think of myself as a fairly forgiving person.  I tend to let things roll off of me without sticking too much and I am, most of the time, able to see value in people.  That is like forgiveness, right?
I forgive my kids and my spouse for the things they do and say that they do not even know hurt me or things they say in a moment of anger to hurt me.  Have I forgiven all of the people in my past that have hurt me?
Forgiving debts is something banks used to do and, in a way, still do.  After 7 years of bankruptcy, records are expunged, the debt is forgiven.  I know I have held things in my heart for much longer than 7 years and it is well beyond time to expunge them from my records.
I search my heart, I ask the Spirit to show me where any grudges hide in the depths of me.  I want to be free from them and release the debts forever.  Forgiveness is freedom for everyone.


Bring forth the things I need to forgive so they are clearly before me and no longer tucked away, weighing me down.  Work in me, and through me, to be a forgiving and gracious person; I want to be like you.  Help me forgive, expunge the records.  Thank you, Lord, for your forgiveness.  Amen.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

This nearly jumped off of the page as I read.
I immediately thought of my kids; not just my kids but their playmates as well.  They are all at an age where lies and deception become a real temptation.  They say what they think you want to hear so they can get what they want or avoid what they don’t want.
My daughter and I were talking about lying a few days ago and she asked why I never lie, or if I do.   My quick answer was that I learned the value of truth and the lies always cause damage even if you never get caught by another person.  My kids lie because they want and they know they will not receive what they ask for because of their desired purpose.  Am I different?
What do I ask for from God?  What is the true reason I ask?  This is something that requires soul searching on my part.  It is easy to say what I ask him for but do I deceive myself in the reason for asking?  Today I ask the Lord to reveal this truth to me.


Is it part of our human nature to be selfish?  I see it from the time we are small children and slowly as we grow we learn to move beyond our selfishness.  You know for me it is not always a forward motion.  Forgive me for not seeking, not asking, asking wrongly.  I know you are not done with me yet, I come to you ready to move forward again.  Amen.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

When I read this passage I picture a knight in shining armor.  I see heavy chain mail and heavy plated armor covering every part of the body to protect it from harm.
As I prayed and pondering this scripture today I thought Paul likely visualized a Roman soldier.  I imagine the armor they wore was still substantial and weighty but not to the degree of the medieval knights.
God’s armor is really not like either of these.  Truth does not weigh us down, it sets us free.  Righteousness lifts us up, it does not press heavily on our chests.  If I were to visualize the armor of God it would be weightless yet impenetrable.  It would shimmer and shine with an almost iridescent light, the light of God.  It does not sit on the outside of us either, it comes from within; it comes from the Holy Spirit, who resides within us.
We never know when an attack from the enemy will be.  It is unlikely we will hear the battle charge coming, he is much more subversive.  So, be ready.  Pray, study, learn and trust in the Lord.  Be strong in His power.


Let us not lean on our own “power” when fighting these battles, we are not strong enough.  Thank you for your Spirit and your power, thank you for giving us these things to fight the battle with.  You know when the battle comes, work within us so we are ready in that time.   In Christ, Amen.

Monday, August 18, 2014

I have had a love song running in my head over the last couple of days and this morning I woke up knowing I wanted to just tell God that I love him.
I love how creative you are God.  When I look around at creation so big and so small I am in awe.
I love the promise of change you bring.  You change the seasons, you change our hearts... and I am glad those changes come from you.
I love how merciful you are.  All through the Bible, all through time until whenever tomorrow ceases, your mercy abounds.  You are so merciful.
I love how giving you are.  You give each of us life.  You give us love.  You give us all we need and so much more that we could imagine to desire.  You are so giving.
I love that you are steadfast and solid.  Even as you bring change all around, you are unchanging.  When chaos seems to run rampant, you are firm.  In the midst of any storm, any fear, anything, I love your steadfast firmness.
I love that you love me.


It feels good to be loved.  I say I love you but do other people know that I love you?  I say I love you but do I show my love for you?  I pray that my love would be evident to everyone but mostly to you.  Help me show and share my love for you today.  Amen.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

What is your favorite drink?
I have to say my favorite thing to drink, over all, is coffee with cream.  I love the warm smooth feeling of it.  I like the way the cream and the slight bitterness of the coffee blend together just so.  There are other things I enjoy drinking, but coffee is my top choice.
As much as I enjoy my coffee I realize it cannot give me what my body truly needs, hydration.  I drink a lot of water too.  I tell my kids water is the life source to our bodies; without it we would not survive.  I try to drink a lot of water.  My body longs for it.
As much as I know I need water I realize it cannot give me what my soul truly needs, God.  As much as my body needs water my soul needs the renewing love and grace of the Lord even more.  The Lord is always here but I am not always fully aware of his refreshing presence.  I lift my heart and my hands in worship and praise to the living God, the God of true life today.  Come, join me and be filled with his living water, given for good of our souls.


My soul’s deepest desire is to be with you.  Help this yearning drive my words and actions as I continue my journey toward the day I bow at your holy throne in glory. Nourish my soul as you know its needs.  I pray this through Jesus, my friend and redeemer.  Amen.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Does this verse bring comfort or worry?
I know some people who do not want the government watching and knowing everything they do and I believe that makes sense.  The government is made up of people fallible and human creatures like you and me.  One thought is that if I am not doing anything I shouldn't, let them look.  This is how it is with my kids.
My kids are quickly getting beyond the age when they say, “Mom, don’t look at me...”  I know when I hear that I need to see what is going on.  Most of the time it just gets really quiet or I hear whispers and giggles, then I know I need to keep my attention focused in that direction because things are likely to go south quickly.
Jonah ran away from God.  The thing is we can’t really run away from God.  Scripture tells us God is everywhere; God sees all things and people.  Not only does he see our physical beings, he sees into our hearts.
I take comfort in this scripture and in this knowledge.  God is faithful and merciful and I thank him for that today.


Search my heart for hidden evil.  I hide it from myself but I know you see all.  I ask you to cleanse my heart and soul once again so I am, through the blood of Jesus Christ, pure and holy in your presence.  I pray for guidance and protection by your Spirit so that all I do and say is good in your sight.  Amen.

Friday, August 15, 2014

This morning I was stretching my muscles and thinking about how the Lord stretches our souls.
He does not push us or stretch us beyond our abilities in him but sometimes it feels like it.  When I stretch my leg muscles start out tight and there is a little pain to loosen them up for the day.  When God stretches us there may be a little pain to loosen and strengthen us as well.
Today I plan to do a trial run school day.  My son is just starting home school and we haven’t worked out a plan with each other yet.  I know I will stretch him in learning and it may feel a little bit painful at times, for both of us.  I do not wish to cause pain to my children but I know they need to learn and I am called to teach them.  I love them beyond words, they are my children.  Even when tears of frustration fall, even when voices of anger rise, even when tender hugs abound, they are my children and I love them.
We are God’s children, he loves us beyond words.  Take a moment to feel his loving arms holding you and loving you today.


Bless each of us as we begin another day.  Keep that tender knowledge in our hearts that you love us; we are your precious children.  Hold our hands and guide us, stretch us and grow us in your love and truth today and all days.  Amen.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

What am I doing, where am I going and why am I doing it the way I do it?  These are questions I have been asking myself a lot lately.
I know we each have things that threaten to bring us down whether they be physical maladies, mental struggles or spiritual battles; maybe some of each.  Occasionally I come to the Lord asking why?  Paul answers: We are what he has made us, created in Christ for good works.  Couldn't I do good works better without the brokenness in my life?  Ah, but the brokenness I experience is what keeps me coming back to the Lord.  If life were all peaches and cream, would I feel the need for mercy and guidance?  Would I feel the need to be saved, would I be grateful for all the blessings or would I take them for granted?
Today is a new day; maybe I will eat better, get better exercise and be more productive in my day.  Whatever I do I hold this verse in my heart.  I am what he created me to be, in Christ. I am called to do his work.  This is my way of life; this is the way to live.


I do not live for my salvation, I live because of it.  I do not work to earn your grace; I work in thanksgiving of your grace.  When I get down on myself remind me again that I am created in Christ, just as you designed me, to live the life you have given me.  I give my life to you, Lord God.  Amen.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

I meditated on this passage just a couple of months ago – why am I back here again?
I don’t know about you but occasionally the Lord leads me to a very familiar scripture over and over again.  Sometimes I gain new insight from it, sometimes it is a reminder to me; a checkpoint.
What have I done about this lately?  Even as I continue my journey of healthy living I wonder if I need to alter my perspective a bit.  I easily dismiss the idea that this physical body I reside in is the temple but when I read scripture I am admonished.  This slightly short, slightly saggy, physical body is a temple to the Lord.
We paint and repair our homes as they need it and as we are able, we also need to care for our temples; our bodies.  It would be remiss to allow a temple to fall into disrepair. 
So there it is:  I work on my body, I work on my spirit, and I work on my mind, all together, all separate.  In this work I will come to love the Lord with all that I am.


Thank you for the lesson to remind me that even though my body is not spirit, they are intertwined.  As I work on each one help me see the connectedness and the benefit in all.  Do not let me neglect any so that I continue to move toward complete love in you and through you.  Amen.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

I saw a quote the other day on the internet that said something like “I know God is not finished with me yet” and this scripture reference was listed with it.
Whenever I have read this in the past I always understood it corporately, not individually.  I decided to look at it on a more personal level today.
I was talking with a friend recently and we were lamenting that we seem to be fighting the same battles that we were fighting years ago.  Are we so dense that we cannot move beyond that struggle or is that our “cross” to carry?  I mentioned to her that he battle is the same but it manifests differently through time.  I have written before about how tired I get, fighting the same battle.  This verse renews my hope and reminds me that the journey is not over and there is always much to learn until that time.
Instead of grumbling about my battles, I look for the growth that has come because of them.  I rejoice that the Lord is with me in the midst of them.  I praise him for continuing to do good work in me and through me until he comes.


Forgive my short sightedness yet again.  Thank you for the new view on this scripture and on my earthly battles.  Thank you for the promise in these words of Paul’s that remind us you are still working in us and through us.  Thank you for your steadfast love and mercy through Christ.  Amen.

Monday, August 11, 2014

My mom taught me an old saying that goes something like “they cut off their nose to spite their face.”  Who, in their right mind, would do that?  They are only hurting themselves!
Yesterday our church said goodbye to our musician and began the process of saying goodbye to our pastor.  It is very apparent that our church is due for a shakeup of some magnitude.  We currently have no paid staff!  Where do we go from here, how do we begin again?  Do we keep on keeping on?
The leadership of the church has spent time in prayer; our deacons and our elders.  A few of the older generation reminded us all to pray to the Lord during this time of change.  I remind us to listen, to be still in his presence so we are able to hear his word for us.
Each of us would do well to learn this on a personal level as well.  I slide into auto-pilot mode pretty easily but the Lord seeks true relationship with us, not rote babble.
Seek him, listen and learn.  He will revive, restore and save each of us.  We will rejoice forever in his holy name!


I lift up my church; I lift up the hearts of your people, and this broken world.  Tune our hearts, minds, and souls clearly and solely to you.  In that revival, we rejoice in your love and your salvation.  Thank you and hallelujah!  Amen.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

This reminds me of Palm Sunday services in church.
We stand in our fellowship hall, each person holding a palm frond, waiting to process into the sanctuary.  When the time is right, we process and we sing praises and hosannas to the Lord.
One day we will stand in the true throne room, in the full presence of our Lord and our God.  We will join the great multitude from all nations, every tribe, and every tongue.  We will lift our hands and our voices in worship and in praise to the one who saved us.
I know many, myself included, who long for the day when this takes place but as I read and prayed over this passage I was reminded that we do not wait until that day to worship and praise his holy name.  We have been saved and he is worthy of our praise this moment; every moment until the new beginning and for eternity. Verse ten says “Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!”  Hallelujah and Amen!


I lift my heart and my hands in humble worship to you.  I lift my voice in praise to your holy name this day.  Hold my gaze Lord, I pray.  Keep my eyes focused on you, the one true God, today and forever.  Amen.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Growing up in Colorado, like I have, I know very little about the real workings of a lighthouse.
Lighthouses sit on the edge of land, tall and sturdy.  They are built to shine light all around them dispelling darkness and fog that are dangerous to the ships and boats coming in to land.  They are not built in the forest glades or in a gully; they are purposely set on high ground so they are easily seen.
If we are the light of the world, as Jesus says, should we not also be easily seen, set on high ground to shine light?  Are we not called to dispel darkness and fog in the world so all can come home in safety?
We cannot shine our own light though.  We are shining the light of God.  Just as the lighthouse keeper gives light to the beacon for the ships, God fills us with his light and we are able to shine out to the world.
Shine your light for all to see.  If you do not have light then seek the safety of God’s light and come home to him today.  Then you, too, will be filled with his light.


Thank you for filling me with your light.  Please use me on whatever shore, whatever hill... wherever you need me to shine and spread your light, dispelling darkness and fog until all come home to you.  Amen.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Two gates: one well maintained and a paved path leading to it and beyond it and another hidden in the ticket partially grown over and only a hint of a path.
Which gate would you use?
I used to tease my kids and their friends when they were just toddlers for taking the path of most resistance.  They were just learning to walk and it seemed like they would choose to walk through toys and over toys, risking a fall when they simply could walk around the toys with a free and clear path.  We are taught from early on not to make things harder than they need to be.  Here Jesus tells us something different.  He tells us to defy logic.  Take the hard path.
When I see obstruction and challenge and difficulty I am often troubled by it and wish for it to go away.  I want to lock this passage away in my heart so when I am stumbling along the difficult and narrow path I remember that this is the path leading to life, to God.  Will you join me on this ardent journey?


We do not walk this narrow, difficult road alone.  Even though there are obstacles and challenges so big, you are with us; you promise that you are always with us.  Help us find and choose the narrow path to life; to you.  Amen.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Most people don’t really breathe as well as they could.  We often just take in shallow breaths and manage with that.
Yesterday when I was out for my cardio walk I was seeing how far I could jog before I lost my breath.  I concentrated on taking in deep breaths.  Breathing in all the way to the bottom of my lungs and filling them with air as best I could to receive the most benefit of oxygen.  I jogged farther than I ever have before and I did not lose my breath.
How often are we like this spiritually as well?  We take in the bare minimum that we think we need and manage with that.  Sunday sermon or a daily verse and we go on without much more.  I am tired of getting by.  I am fed up with the bare minimum, settling for less.
Breathe deep!  Take in as much as you can for the most benefit that you can receive.  God wants us to live and live abundantly, not just sneak by.  I want to shout these words from a mountain top so all would hear – God wants us to live – live in Him and truly live!


How do I share your love and your Word with more people?  How do I testify to the changes you have made in my life so more people will seek, find, and live too?  I long for the day when I stand among a vast multitude of deeply living souls and we can all celebrate true life in you together.  Until then, please use these words as you will.  Amen.