Monday, October 24, 2011


I have been blessed over the years to have many precious friends.  Each brings something special to my life.  I have friends that have lasted through the ages...we have a shared history.  We have shared the highs and lows together.  I have friends that I've only known for a short time, but have become so dear to me that I can't imagine my life without them.  Friends add so much joy to life.  They adorn our lives, giving it rich color and they add sparkle to dreary days.

Many friends come and go as our lives and circumstances change, distance separates or they were meant only for a season. 

Yet friends are only human.  Their capacity to love and give and care is limited.  Their ability to share your burdens can be compromised by their own problems, time constaints or simply friend fatigue.  

But there is one friend who will NEVER leave you or forsake you....JESUS.  His love is limitless!  His shoulders are broad and He invites us to give Him all of our troubles.

Yes, no one cares for me like JESUS.

As the song writer penned "What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear.  What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer."

When friends grow weary of our tears and our burdens are too heavy to carry any longer, He is there.  All of our burdens He will bear. 

He will walk with me through the darkness, my candle He will be. 

He thinks about me constantly.  He never forgets me.  He is never too busy.  His door is always open.  In fact, He yearns to spend time with me.  He wants me to pour my heart out to Him, even if I've already told him 100 times already.  He never grows weary of my coming.

Take my hand, Jesus.  Walk with me today.  Whisper your love to me.  Calm my fears.  Wipe away all the tears.  Plant YOUR joy in my heart.  Fill me with your peace.  Chase away all the fearful thoughts.  Reassure me you are in control and all is well.  Walk with me Jesus and hold my hand.  Never let me go.  Til my time on earth is done and my heart beats its last, then open the gates to Heaven and walk me through the door where I will FINALLY be home with You for all eternity.

Saturday, October 8, 2011


"So I will praise you as long as I live; at Your name, I will lift up my hands.  You satisfy me AS WITH RICH FOOD; my mouth will praise you with joyful lips." Psalm 63: 4,5.

I call this my TRUFFLES verse.  I can't think of any richer food than truffles and the psalmist declares in this verse that is how God satisfies me "as with [truffles]".  Now how sweet is that?!! (No pun intended)

Yes, God satisfies me with so many truffles, sweet little things that are just blessings many would never notice.

Let me share just a few from the last few days.

Thursday I was getting ready to leave for Bible study and I reached for my white jacket.  It was not in my closet nor was it in the coat closet.  Puzzled, but no time for searching, I got in the car with a quick glance over my shoulder to be sure it was not in the backseat and headed off to church.  Bible study.  A lunch meeting.  Then waiting to meet with our women's director while I casually chatted with a friend.  I had not mentioned the missing jacket to anyone.  As we are standing there talking, in walks a gentleman who works in the kitchen.  Guess what he was carrying?  You guessed it!  My white jacket, neatly hung on a hangar!!  He had come to ask my friend who works at the church if she knew who it belonged to.  She had no clue.  But I was astounded to see MY jacket in HIS hands!!  He had no idea it was mine!  So totally a God thing!!  And how sweet of God (one of those "truffles",don't you see) to have it hand delivered to me even on a hangar!!

Today I had planned to attend a writing retreat.  I have had it on my calendar for months.  But today I was SO tired, had so much that needed to be done at home, so many other things I could be doing that I almost talked myself out of going.  Yet I sensed that I was supposed to go.  I knew no one who was going, which also made it a little less appealing.  Still, I decided I needed to go. 

I headed off to Bartlett with my Mapquest map in hand.  Somehow though it did not jive with the road signs and I took several wrong turns before finally locating the church.  Oddly, we were meeting at an outdoor sanctuary for opening worship.  I couldn't quite feature that and was not overly excited at the prospect.  (Like I said, I was tired).  But oh did God have a treat (aka "truffle") waiting for me.

Out from the parking lot of this church was a gravel path that led to a wooded area at the rear of their property.  As you walked through the gate, you walked into an open area surrounded by trees... a perfect sanctuary in the woods!  At the front was a large wooden cross.  To the side was a stone fire pit which was burning to chase away the chill and to the right of that was a stone pulpit.  The area was even equipped with a sound system and lights for use at night! 

As we sat in that little piece of Heaven, tucked away beyond a concrete parking lot, the musicians played worship songs and we sang praises to Him.  A gentle breeze blew through the trees as a shower of golden leaves fluttered about, drifting ever so quietly to the ground.  Such a peaceful place.  Such a respite from a busy, hectic week.  I knew I was where I was supposed to be.  Praise God I had not turned a deaf ear and chosen to stay home to do laundry. 

After the  music, a young woman came to speak on Psalm 103.  I love the book of Psalms so she definitely had a captive audience with me.  She was a great communicator and God blessed again as she spoke, reminding me that I am a beloved daughter of the King and He desires to give me the desires of my heart.  Another truffle for the day.

Inside we made our way to tables to begin the "learning" part of the day.  A woman approached my table and said "Don't I know you?"  Her face did look very familiar and we soon realized that she had been in one of the Bible studies I had led a while back.  She joined me at my table and we had a great time together, both sharing our love for writing and later, sharing our joys over being grandmothers.  What a sweet time we had!!  I was so thankful that God had brought her across my path again.  I have a feeling that we will be keeping in touch in the future, and I look forward to getting to know this sweet sister in Christ even more.

Later in the day, we switched tables.  Here I met an older woman who teaches at the University of Memphis.  She had spent most of her life writing professionally in line with her career, but now is enjoying writing children's books.  Her latest project is writing about tea parties for little girls.  Are you ready for this?  My oldest granddaughter LOVES tea parties and I'm hoping my youngest will, too, in another year or so.  She told me all about her plans for this delightful series of books which will be designed for little girls to teach them in a fun way about manners, social graces and being feminine.  How sweet of the Lord to introduce me to this dear lady.  She has taken my information with a promise to email me as soon as they go to print. 

Yes, I truly believe that God is in the little things.  The seemingly insignificant things of life.  But nothing is insignificant when lovingly handed to us by our great and gracious God.  I am so thankful for the way He touches my life, handing me truffles on an ordinary Saturday morning for no other reason than the fact that He loves me so!!

Have you had any truffles today?

Friday, September 30, 2011


In his most recent book, Maximum Faith, George Barna reports that 4 out of 5 self-identified Christian adults (81%) say they have made a personal commitment of faith to Jesus Christ which is important in their life. 

Yet less than one out of those same five (15%) claim to be invested in spiritual development.  And only
about the same number (22%) say they are dependent upon God.

So where does that leave the Christian community? 

Where does that leave YOU?

Are you one of the four......

or the one out of five?

I hope this will get you to thinking. 

My mother used to say "If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything."  If America is not standing upon the promises of God...if we are not deeply rooted in our faith, then we will ultimately FALL. 

Saturday, September 10, 2011


The following is taken from MOMENTS WITH YOU by Dennis Rainey.  I thought it powerful enough to want to share it with you today.  I hope it will stir you to ask "WHAT DO I BELIEVE?"

Near Beliefs

Continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them. 2 TIMOTHY 3:14

I'm afraid too many of us Christians don't know what we really believe. Like a cork in the ocean, driven and tossed by the waves, we bounce from opinion to opinion, influenced more by the last book we read than by a lifetime of biblical study. We've become activity junkies, seldom stopping long enough to decide what really matters to us, too busy to determine what's really worth living for,let alone worth dying for.

As a result we live our lives based upon "near beliefs." Near beliefs have just enough truth in them to sound strangely familiar to convictions, yet they're too weak to inspire us or our actions. Too anemic to influence us to make a decision that demands a sacrifice.

Near beliefs wimp out when a teenager is pushing you out of his or her life. Near beliefs won't keep a marriage together when romance fades. Near beliefs almost always fall silent on such issues as same-sex marriages and homosexuals adopting children. Near beliefs don't inspire the courage to change a behavior or to press on against disapproval or opposition from "the herd."

Near beliefs are to blame for a new brand of Christianity that is epidemic in our homes and churches—a faith that has little flavor, little light and little influence. When near beliefs are our only source of motivation, tough stands are never taken, feathers are never ruffled, and absolutes are held very loosely.

Without core convictions to help us navigate, we stand uneasily on shifting sand, and we lack the solid footing with which to stage a life of principle and character.

Today is a call to biblical conviction. A call to spending time studying the Word. A clarion call to challenge you to determine: What do I believe?

What is needed today is a battalion of believers who follow Christ and stand for Him and His truth.


If you were on trial for being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?


Ask God for the courage to stand for that which you know to be true.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


I decided earlier in the summer that I wanted to read some novels this summer just for pleasure.  Not to learn anything or to study anything....just for sheer pleasure and enjoyment.  My good friend loaned me some of her Francine Rivers books and I have devoured them! 

The first Francine Rivers book I ever read was years ago....Redeeming Love.  If you have never read it, I can't recommend it enough!! I have never met anyone who read this book who did not make this comment,
"I could not put it down!"  However, after reading it and wanting more, I was given another Rivers book.  Sadly, I could not get into it.  But, with the encouragement of my friend, I decided to delve into these newer Rivers books and give them a try.  I am SO glad I did.

These books are all Christian books, with a Christian theme and scripture peppered throughout.  Although I was NOT studying, I was tremendously blessed and impacted by all three that I have read.  The last one, The Scarlet Thread, demonstrated the awesome truth that God is sovereign and His plan ....His kingdom plan....runs through all of history and right through each of our lives.  Jeremiah 29:11, my daughter's favorite verse, says "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for good and not evil, plans to prosper you and to give you a hope and a future". 

I don't know about you, but some days it's just hard to SEE God's plan in the things that happen in our lives and the lives of those we love and care about.  But, we KNOW that His word is true.  We KNOW that He is totally good even in the midst of everything bad. 

This week in looking for a scripture to share with a friend, I ran across the following passage.  It is just a reminder of WHO our God is, how mighty, how awesome and how completely IN CONTROL and SOVEREIGN He is.  Maybe you need reminding as much as I did. 

He protects His flock like a shepherd;

He gathers the lambs in His arms

and carries [them] in the fold of His [garment].

He gently leads those that are nursing.

12 Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand

or marked off the heavens with the span [of his hand]?

Who has gathered the dust of the earth in a measure

or weighed the mountains in a balance

and the hills in scales?

13 Who has directed the Spirit of the LORD,

or who gave Him His counsel?

14 Who did He consult with?

Who gave Him understanding

and taught Him the paths of justice?

Who taught Him knowledge

and showed Him the way of understanding?

15 Look, the nations are like a drop in a bucket;

they are considered as a speck of dust on the scales;

He lifts up the islands like fine dust.

16 Lebanon is not enough for fuel,

or its animals enough for a burnt offering.

17 All the nations are as nothing before Him;

they are considered by Him

as nothingness and emptiness.

18 Who will you compare God with?

What likeness will you compare Him to?

19 To an idol?—[something that] a smelter casts,

and a metalworker plates with gold

and makes silver welds [for it]?

20 To one who shapes a pedestal,

choosing wood that does not rot?

He looks for a skilled craftsman

to set up an idol that will not fall over.

21 Do you not know?

Have you not heard?

Has it not been declared to you

from the beginning?

Have you not considered

the foundations of the earth?

22 God is enthroned above the circle of the earth;

its inhabitants are like grasshoppers.

He stretches out the heavens like thin cloth

and spreads them out like a tent to live in.

23 He reduces princes to nothing

and makes the judges of the earth to be irrational.

24 They are barely planted, barely sown,

their stem hardly takes root in the ground

when He blows on them and they wither,

and a whirlwind carries them away like stubble.

25 "Who will you compare Me to,

or who is My equal?" asks the Holy One.

26 Look up and see:

who created  these?

He brings out the starry host by number;

He calls all of them by name.

Because of His great power and strength,

not one of them is missing.

27 Jacob, why do you say,

and Israel, why do you assert:

"My way is hidden from the LORD,

and my claim is ignored by my God"?

28 Do you not know?

Have you not heard?

Yahweh is the everlasting God,

the Creator of the whole earth.

He never grows faint or weary;

there is no limit to His understanding.

29 He gives strength to the weary

and strengthens the powerless.

30 Youths may faint and grow weary,

and young men stumble and fall,

31 but those who trust in the LORD

will renew their strength;

they will soar on wings like eagles;

they will run and not grow weary;

they will walk and not faint.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


Have you ever struggled with being accepted?  Ever felt like you were not quite good enough in someone else's eyes? 

I have.  I have struggled with that most of my life.

Growing up I always felt like I was on the outside looking in around my peers.  I had a terrible inferiority complex.  At home, I lived in the shadow of a "perfect" cousin who always did everything right.  She was so talented, so smart, so pretty.  In high school, I remember our home ec teacher remarking to me just a few weeks into the semester (having had the perfect cousin prior to me) "Well YOU certainly aren't ________, are you?" 

As a Christian, I have felt like I have failed way more than succeeded.  BUT....the good news is that in God's eyes, if we have put our faith and trust in Christ, we are ACCEPTED IN THE BELOVED!!!  Ephesians 1: 5,6. 

We are not accepted based upon our performance.  That is hard for us to grasp sometimes because we live in such a performance-based society.  Our acceptance is based on the finished work of Christ.  We are accepted "in Him".  We are not accepted by what we have done, but rather what He has already done in our behalf on the cross.

When we can really get that through our heads, it will change the way we live.  No matter what I DO I will never be good enough.  I will never measure up to Christ's standards.  But I don't have to because my acceptance is not based on my measuring up. 

My desire to measure up, to be obedient, to follow Jesus is not to "perform".  It is to bring glory to put HIM on display!!  There is NO good thing in me....except Him!  But, if I live according to His Word, it puts HIM on display and draws others to Him.  It is not about me, it's all about Him!! 

William R. Newell in his classic "Romans, Verse by Verse" put it this way:

"[Man] has been accepted in Christ, who is his standing!  He is not on probation.  As to his life past, it does not exist before God; he died at the cross and Christ is his life.  To believe and to consent to be loved while unworthy is the great secret.  To 'hope to be better' (hence acceptable) is to fail to see yourself in Christ only.  To be disappointed with yourself is to have believed in YOURSELF [not Christ's finished work].  To be proud is to be blind!  For we have no standing before God IN OURSELVES." 

"Until the Christian is absolutely and scripturally sure of his standing, he is not going to do much standing."  Miles Stanford, Green Letters.

Today if you have spent your life trying to measure up to someone else's standards or your own, if you have felt "less than" more often than not, if you have found yourself performing to gain God's approval, STOP!!
Today embrace the glorious fact that you are ALREADY  ACCEPTED IN THE BELOVED!!!  Go forth, therefore, and live in the light of the glorious fact that it is CHRIST + NOTHING. Stop "performing" to measure up, but rather be obedient in your walk and put HIM on display!!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Do you know any dysfunctional families?  Are you part of a dysfunctional family?

I used to think they were in the minority, now I'm beginning to wonder if there are truly ANY functional families at all.  It seems everyone I talk to has some kind of issue going on within their family that tears at the heart.  This got me to thinking "What does the Bible say about dysfunctional families?"  So I began to think back through some of the major families we know in the Bible.  Turns out dysfunction in families has been around since the beginning.  Take a look.

Adam and Eve – had Cain and Abel. Cain was rebellious, failing to handle the sacrifice as God had commanded. As a result, God favored Abel’s offering over Cain’s. This caused jealousy between the brothers. Cain killed Abel. (Genesis 4: 5-10)

Noah – Noah had 3 sons: Ham, Shem and Japheth. Ham “uncovered his father’s nakedness” (which some translate to mean he sodomized him) after the flood.(Genesis 9:20-24)

Lot – After God sends Abram out of the land of UR and into the land where HE wants him to go, he and Lot cannot get along. There is always bickering over the land and the wells, etc. So Abram tells Lot to choose which way he wants to go. Lot picks the side he thinks is the most lush and green and ends up in Sodom, a land filled with homosexuality and wickedness. God comes to destroy Sodom, but allows Lot and his wife and 2 daughters to escape. His wife is killed so it is only he and the 2 girls on the outskirts of town, trying to stay alive. The girls get their father drunk and both sleep with him and get pregnant by him. (Genesis 19: 1-36)

Abraham and Sara – Sara offers her handmaiden as a surrogate to  because she is childless. Then gets mad because he does what she asks and he fathers a child by Hagar. Ishmael and Isaac were never close as brothers, but an enmity was between them from the beginning. (Genesis 16; 21: 1-21)

Jacob and Esau – Isaac and Rebekah have 2 sons, Jacob and Esau.  Isaac favored Esau because he was a hunter and a "man's man".  Rebekah favored Jacob and a "homebody".  Jacob cheats Esau out of his birthright with the help and encouragement of his mother. He has to run away from home to escape Esau’s rage. He goes to work for Uncle Laban but Uncle Laban tricks him into marrying the wrong daughter, then makes him work 7 more years for his beloved Rachel. He has 12 sons by the 2 women but he favors Rachel’s children, Joseph and Benjamin. (Genesis 25: 26-34; 27: 1-43; 29-30)

Joseph – Because of his father’s partiality towards him, his other brothers are so jealous they seek to kill him. One of them has pity on him and convinces the others to put him in a well instead, planning to come back and rescue him later. They deceive their father into thinking an animal killed him after they sell him to some traveling gypsies. (Genesis 37)

David – Out of all the sons of Jesse, God picks David to be the next king and to be the line through which Jesus will come. Though scripture does not elaborate on it, I’m sure there was probably quite a lot of jealousy over that fact among the brothers. Then he becomes king, is highly favored of God being called a man after God’s own heart. He has numerous wives but he looks upon the wife of another, sleeps with her and then has her husband killed in battle. He has a son who rapes his sister and another son who plots the overthrow of his father’s throne. (I Samuel 16: 1-13; II Sam 11: 1-27; 13: 1-14; 15-18)

Solomon – One of David’s sons, Solomon, was born to the woman he committed adultery with, Bathsheba. Solomon was considered the wisest man who ever lived yet had took hundreds of women to be "wives" and they turned him away from being obedient to the Lord.  (I Kings 10: 23, 24; 11: 1-4)
These are just a few of the more familiar families of the Bible, but I think it gives a clear picture that families are made up of sinful people. There are no perfect families because there are no perfect people. God Himself was a perfect parent but He only had ONE perfect child, and it wasn't me or you! It was JESUS.

So do we give up our quest for a godly home and a godly family? Absolutely not!! We continue to seek, on a personal level, to be all that God wants each of us to be, to be in relationship with Him, obedient to Him and committed to Him. We teach our children and grandchildren God's Word, we model before them to the best of our ability how to follow Christ and pray for them to commit their lives to Him.

In reality, no family will be truly "functional" til we get to Heaven and sin is eradicated. But, until then, we must contine to "seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness", love each other, forgive each other and pray for each other without ceasing.

Monday, July 25, 2011


From Max Lucado's latest book MAX ON LIFE:

"Prayer reminds you WHO is in charge. You don't take your requests to somone with less authority.  You take them to someone who outranks you in the solutions department.  Prayer decreases you and increases God.

Prayer gives permission to God to complete the request according to His will.  Hopefully, you don't pray just to let God know what's going on.  He's way ahead of you on that one.  You are praying to transfer 'my will be done' to 'God's will be done'.  Since he is in charge, he knows the best solution.  Prayer exercises your willpower and gives God authority to work in your life.

Prayer relieves the stress of perceived inactivity.  Now that God has been given the task, you don't have to worry about it any longer.  God has his people on  it.  With less stress comes more strength.  Prayer transfers the burden to God and lightens your load.

People struggle with life when they don't have answers.  The darkest valleys are blackened by the shadows of question marks.  So what do you do?  Think harder?  Try harder?  Hold longer conversations with yourself?  Why not pray to the One with all the answers and let Him take over?

Prayer pushes us through life's slumps, propels us over the humps, and pulls us out of the dumps.  Prayer is the OOMPH we need to get the answers we seek."

Sunday, July 24, 2011


How many times have you said the following:

"When I lose 10#, 20#, 30 #, etc, THEN I'll............"

"When we have enough money, THEN we'll............."

"When this relationship is healed, THEN I'll be happy"

"When this problem is resolved, THEN I'll be happy"

"When I get this promotion, THEN I'll be happy."

"When I am healed of this sickness, THEN I'll be happy".

"When we have a baby, THEN I'll be happy."

"When our children are grown and on their own, THEN we'll..........."

"When I retire, THEN I'll .................".

I don't know about you, but I find that I am always waiting on the PERFECT set of circumstances, waiting for everything in my life to fall into place.  But as the years continue to creep up on me, I am beginning to realize there is NEVER going to be a day when EVERYTHING is perfect in my least not in THIS life. 

In the meantime, I am wasting time and failing to enjoy what I DO have to enjoy.

Over the last several years God has been trying to hammer a verse into my head, "THIS is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in IT."  Psalm 118: 24.  You see I am a worrier and the "what if's" can drive me crazy and, if I let them, steal my joy.  God has been trying to teach me that "sufficient unto today is the evil thereof "(Matt. 6:34).  TODAY is the only day I have and when I bring tomorrow's troubles into TODAY, I rob myself of all that God had for me TODAY. 

But today, I heard a comment on K-Love about wasting time waiting on things to be PERFECT and it hit me that I have been doing that all my life.  Again, Psalm 118:24 came to my mind.  But this time, instead of the emphasis being on TODAY, it was on REJOICE and BE GLAD IN IT. 

It was if the Lord were saying to me, "Pat, things are not ever going to be perfect and you are wasting precious time waiting for them to be.  In the meantime you are missing the blessings you DO have waiting on what you DON'T have." 

What about YOU?  Have you been waiting on something in YOUR life to become perfect?  Are you wishing things could be like they used to be?  Are you waiting on circumstances to change?  Are you grieving for a lost love?  Are you yearning for something God has not allowed you to have? 

It is true that God tells us to wait on Him, to trust Him and to seek Him for what we desire.  But, while you are waiting on those prayers to be answered or those needs to be met, what are you doing with what you DO have?  What are you going to do with TODAY?

I urge you to realize that PERFECT is not going to come til we reach Heaven.  Oh the circumstance that you are praying over may very well work out just the way you want it in God's time.  But...there will be another circumstance that is imperfect waiting in the wings to take its place.  

So today, will you join me in thanking God for all the blessings you DO have?  Will you choose to REJOICE and BE GLAD in THIS day? 

Helen Steiner Rice put it beautifully:

Yesterday's dead,

Tomorrow's unborn,

So there's nothing to fear

And nothing to mourn,

For all that is past

And all that has been

Can never return

To be lived once again...

And what lies ahead

Or the things that will be

Are still in GOD'S HANDS

So it is not up to ME

To live in the future

That is God's great unknown

For the past and present

God claims for His own..

So all I need do

Is to live for TODAY

And trust God to show me

THE TRUTH and the WAY..

For it's only the memory

Of things that have been

And expecting tomorrow

To bring trouble again

That fills my today

Which God wants to bless

With uncertain fears

And borrowed distress...

For all I need live for

Is this one little minute,

For life's HERE and NOW

And eternity's in it.

---Helen Steiner Rice

Sunday, July 10, 2011


Do you ever pray and feel like God must be sleeping?  You pray and you pray, you ask and you ask to no avail.  It seems as if Heaven is closed and God must be napping. 

Psalm 11 : 4 says "His eyes behold, his eyelids try the children of men."  In other words, He IS looking, He IS seeing, but it appears that His eyelids are closed from our vantage point.

We must remember that God never slumbers or sleeps.  Even Jesus, who in his humanity DID sleep, never OVERslept!!  He woke just in time to still the storm.  He was never late nor did He ever run out of time.

So in our lives, though it may seem that the doors of Heaven are shut and that His eyes are closed, the reality is that He may be testing us.  Will we give up?  Will we stop praying?

I have been in God's waiting room.  On one of my first occasions to be in that waiting room, it seemed that His answer would never come.  Then He gave me Isaiah 30:18 and it changed my perspective on waiting:

"Therefore will the Lord wait, that [object of the exercise] He may be gracious unto you and therefore [ultimate goal] HE WILL BE EXALTED".  Again we are reminded IT IS NOT ABOUT US!!! 

If you have labored long in prayer over a problem, a relationship, a lost loved one and it seems God is sleeping, be assured He is not.  He is waiting til the appointed time to move and to act on your behalf so that ultimately HE will be glorified in it.  In the process, the waiting is hard, but our faith is strengthened, and one day we will finally see it all unfold according to His plan.  The rest of Isaiah 30: 18 says "Blessed are all they who wait for Him".  So don't despair and don't give up.  "Be silent before the Lord and wait expectantly for Him." Psalm 37: 7

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


I've been reading a book that a friend from Sunday School has referred to numerous times in our class, PRACTICING HIS PRESENCE by Brother Lawrence and Frank Laubach.  Brother Lawrence (Nicholas Herman) of France died in 1691.  Frank Lauback went home to be with the Lord in 1970.  Both men wrote about practicing the presence of the Lord on a moment by moment basis.

Brother Lawrence was born into poverty in French Lorraine in 1611.  He became a Christian at the age of 18, became a soldier and then a footman.  At the age of 55, he entered a religious community called the Carmelites and became what was known as a "lay brother", from whence came his name "Brother Lawrence".  During those years he served mostly in the hospital kitchen.  But within that community and later beyond, became known for his experience of practicing the presence of God.  We are privileged to learn a little more of how he came to do this through some letters that he wrote and that were later published. 

Frank Laubach was born in the U.S. in 1884, almost 200 years after the death of Brother Lawrence.  Forty five years later he would be serving as a missionary in the Phillipines.  It was not til he was 45 that Frank began "practicing the presence of Christ" and 45 years later, he went home to be with the Lord. He was one of the most well known and well travelled men on earth at that time.  Countless honors were bestowed upon him during his lifetime including Man of the Year to which he commented "The Lord will not wish to count my trophies but my scars."  He wrote over 50 books, several of which were best sellers.  He was perhaps the greatest educator of his time.  His accomplishments are virutally endless.  But what stands out most are the letters he wrote to his father regarding his experience of "practicing the presence of Christ."

January 20, 1930 he wrote :

"Although I have been a minister and a missionary for fifteen years, I have  not lived the entire day of every day, minute by minute to follow the will of God.  Two years ago a profound dissatisfaction led me to begin trying to line up my actions with the will of God about every fifteen minutes or every half hour.  But this year I have started out to live ALL my waking moments in conscious listening to the inner voice, asking without ceasing ,"What, Father, do you desire said?  What, Father do you desire THIS MINUTE?"  It is clear that is exactly what Jesus was doing all day every day [while he walked on this earth]."

Now as you are reading this maybe you are thinking "That is absurd!  No one can think about God every minute of every day." that really impossible?

I have found myself throughout my life talking to God throughout my day, about big things and little things.  In fact, we really have an ongoing conversation.  So, to me, that does not really sound SO far-fetched.  However, I can say that I have not attained the level to which either of these saints did....every minute of every day.  Yet it is something to press toward.

Does He not say "Pray without ceasing"?

Does He not say "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding, in ALL of your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths." 

Does He not say "Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added unto you." 

If we are acknowledging Him in every thing we do, if we are seeking Him above all else, will that not lead to praying without ceasing and therefore be "practicing the presence"? 

Here are just a few instances of how that can play out as I have experienced it just today....

As soon as you open your eyes, acknowledge Him.  Ask for His guidance throughout the day, ask for His help with whatever problems you may be facing today.  Thank Him you were able to sleep through the night.

As my granddaughter and I pulled weeds this morning, we talked of Adam and Eve, and how it was all their fault that we have weeds.  Now maybe you are wondering how that is "practicing the presence"?  I think it is because it gave me the opportunity to bring Him into our conversation.  To which she replied "Yes, Mimi, that was sin and Jesus died for our sins."  Oh yes, I was practicing the presence as inwardly I praised Him that this child knows that already at the tender age of 5!!

Later, still pulling weeds, I asked her what her favorite song was.  She replied "One, Two, Three".  I was puzzled.  I said "I don't think I know that song". So she began to sing
One, Two Three...Jesus loves me
One, Two Jesus loves you.

Three and four,  He loves you more
Than you've ever been loved before

Five, Six, Seven I'm going to Heaven
Eight and Nine soon to be mine

Nine and ten
Let's sing it again.

Now if that wouldn't bring any grandmother into His presence, I don't know what would.  Oh yes, I was praising Him big time that that song was her favorite!!! 

Still later upon hearing of my son-in-love's grandmother's health crisis, I uttered a prayer for comfort and healing, direction for the doctors and comfort for the family.  Others were on my mind as I drove away, many who are needing His healing touch today.

A few minutes later I was standing in Lowe's looking at a variety of plants in all different shapes and colors, marvelling at His handiwork and asking Him to help me make the wisest choices. 

Home again, checking email and Facebook, I was stirred and brought into His presence once more by the numerous needs that were voiced from both sources. 

You see it is not as hard as one would think.  Yet I am not to the level of intimacy that Brother Lawrence or Frank achieved....but I hope to be one day.  But I do know that He  is always there, waiting to speak to us, waiting for us to come to Him with every detail of our life.  He desires for us to acknowledge His presence, every moment of every day.

How about you?  Have you entered His presence today?  It's not too late.........

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


"Whatsoever you do, in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ." Colossians 3:17


Whatever is a pretty inclusive word.  Whatever you DO....whatever you SAY, do ALL in the name of the Lord Jesus. 

If we do or say something "in the name of the Lord Jesus" it means that we represent Him by what we do or say.  What we do or say directly reflects upon Him.  Ouch!!

So what falls under "whatever"?  Let's just think of a few:

How you drive.  When you get behind the wheel, do you drive the way Jesus would?  WHATEVER includes your driving.

How you speak to the telemarketer who calls you right when you're in the middle of something.  As Jesus' representative, how do you handle His calls?  WHATEVER includes your words.

How you treat the customer service representative that continues to argue with you.  WHATEVER means what you say as well as HOW you say it.  How do your words when you are stressed or angry reflect upon the Lord?

How you perform on the job.  Do you cut corners?  Do you respect your clients? Do you do your work with the utmost integrity?  Do you give a full 8 hours for 8 hours of pay?  How do you treat your co-workers? How do you treat your subordinates?   WHATEVER means you represent Him to every person you come in contact with on your job....those above you, those below you, those you work with and those you work for.  Do ALL in the name of the Lord Jesus. 

How you treat your family.  Do those who live in your house see Jesus in you?  Do your words represent Him?  WHATEVER also means WHEREVER ,including home where we often let down our guard and treat our family differently than we would treat a guest. 

Your daily household chores.  Whether you are doing laundry, mopping the floor, cleaning the bathroom, preparing a meal, cutting the lawn, or washing the car....WHATEVER you do at home, do it ALL in the name of the Lord Jesus. 

WOW!!  When you think  that passage through, it is easy to see that most of us probably fall short in a lot of areas.  But, now that you know....WHATEVER you do home, at work, at play, at school, on the way or in ALL in the name of (representing) Jesus Christ.  When you do, it will reflect WHO you belong to and it will draw others to Him. 

Monday, June 27, 2011


We make appointments for many things....doctors, dentists, hair cuts, attorneys, massage, manicures, ,etc.  Sometimes things happen, though and we forget our appointment or we just skip it because we have something better to do.  Sometimes we are late; sometimes we are early. 

But there is one appointment you are destined to keep.  It is a 100% odds that you WILL make it.  That appointment is with death.  Yes, that's right, the odds are one out of one.  No one escapes this appointment.

You can try as you will, but the day WILL come when the Lord will call you home. 

Hebrews 9:27 says "it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment". 

Most of us do not spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about dying.  At least not until something puts it in our the death of a loved one, the terminal diagnosis of a friend or the sudden death of a close friend.  Then we are once again reminded that it is real, it is coming to each of us one day and none of us knows when.  But...God knows. 

He knows your appointment.  It may be nearer than you think.  Or, you may have a lot more years to live.  None of us know.  Life changes in the blink of an eye.

The important thing is not to obscess about WHEN it is coming, the important thing is to be ready WHENEVER that day comes. 

How to you get ready for death? 

Romans 6:23 tells us that "the wages of sin is death".  Every single one of us has sin debt.  Romans 3:10 says "There is NONE righteous, no not one."  So no matter how good you think you are, no matter how many good things you have done in your life.  There will NEVER be enough good deeds to outweigh your bad deeds, not enough good things to measure up to God's standard.  So if we have a sin debt and we cannot pay it, then someone must or we will be expected to pay the price for our sin.  Aaaahhh...but, there IS someone who has already paid your debt...JESUS!!  He paid your debt and mine.  He paid a debt He did not owe, because I owed a debt I could not pay!!  And all He wants is for us to receive the free gift He has so graciously bought for us...our cancelled receiving what He did on the cross for us.  If we do that, if we place our trust in Him and receive the free gift of salvation, He will be waiting for us at our appointment with death and He will tenderly welcome us Home to be with Him forever more....!

Do you have the peace and assurance today that if you appointment should be today, you'd be ready?  You can be.  Just accept that free gift so freely offered and receive Him  today.  I'd love to share with you how you can do that. 

Saturday, June 25, 2011


There is an old hymn, beloved of my mother, entitled "I'LL MEET YOU IN THE MORNING".  This song sings of a sweet reunion with loved ones who have passed on to Heaven.

Yet I love to think of it in context of how God longs to meet with me every morning.  He is waiting for me as soon as my eyes open, eager to talk with me and share His love with me. 

In Bob Sorge's book, THE SECRETS OF THE SECRET PLACE, he writes of meeting with God in that secret place :

"One of the best kept secrets of our faith is the blessedness and joy of cultivating a secret life with God. Imagine the sheer delight of it even now.  You're tucked away in  a quiet nook, the door is shut; you're curled up in a comfortable position; the living word of God is laid open before you; Jesus Himself stands at your side; the Holy Spirit is gently washing your heart; your love is awakened as you meditate upon the gracious words of His mouth; your spirit is ignited and your mind is renewed; you talk to Him and He talks to you in the language of intimate friendship."

Oh and how sweet is that meeting when we take the time to do it.  It is my favorite time of the day. 

How it must sadden the heart of the Father when his children do not make time to talk to Him.  I know how much I delight in talking to MY children!  Hearing their voice on the phone is always a joy to me.  Spending time with them is precious.  If it is so with me, is it not so also with our Heavenly Father?  Absolutely!!  He yearns for us to spend time with Him.  He waits on us to show up.  Yet day after day many of His children refuse to take the time.  They give Him a cursory nod at the dinner table with a rehearsed blessing or only run to Him when they are in trouble.  But oh the blessings you are missing if you are not meeting with Him daily.

One of my favorite old hymns is IN THE GARDEN....

I come to the garden alone
While the dew is still on the roses
And the voice I hear
Falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses.
And, He walks with me
And He talks with me
And tells me I am His own.
And the joy we share
As we tarry there
None other will
Ever know.

That song is special to me because I love meeting with Him in my garden.

In JESUS CALLING today, I read,

"Open your hand and your heart to receive this day as a precious gift from Me.  I begin each day with a sunrise, announcing My radiant Presence.  By the time you rise from your bed, I have already prepared the way before you.  I eagerly await that first conscious thought.  I rejoice when you glance My way."

As I sat in the quiet solitude of my garden this morning, His presence was so real.  He tells me in Zephaniah 3: 17 that He "rejoices over me with singing,"  Can you fathom that?  The God of the universe rejoices over ME with singing?!!!  I can.  He did it this morning.  He sent the birds to sing sweet melodies as I sat in His presence.  Not only that, but as the gentle breeze blew He reminded me that His Holy Spirit breathes on me moment by moment of every day.  His love washes over me.  As I looked around at the beauty of His creation, the intricate design of His handiwork, I am also reminded of who He is, the Master Designer, Creator, Holy God.  What a privilege to bow in His presence and worship Him in the beauty of His holiness....right in the middle of His garden.

When was the last time you got alone with the Father and talked with Him? 
When was the last time you sat at His feet and listened?
If you are not in the habit of doing so,
May I suggest to you that you begin today?
He is waiting for you and eagerly wants to talk with you.
Come just as you are for that is just how He loves you...just as you are.
If it seems awkward and you don't know what to do
Just start with 5 or 10 minutes.
JESUS CALLING is a great devotional to help you get started
It is short, sharing the Father's heart with a few
scriptures to get you started.
Whether in the garden, on the back porch, in a quiet nook, or
your favorite chair...just get alone with Him today.
You will be so glad you did!!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


"Before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.  I even I am the Lord; and beside me there is no savior....therefore you are my witnesses that I am God.  Yea, before the day was, I am he; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand....I am the Lord and there is none else, there is no God beside me....for I am God and there is none else; I am God and there is none like me."  Isaiah 43: 10, 13; 45: 5; 46: 9.

This past weekend I was on a long drive alone.  To keep myself awake I had a Mercy Me cd playing.  It was the Incredible Mr. Lovewell album and it has some cranking music on it!  I had listened to it there and most of the way home, when suddenly a line from one of the songs caught my attention.  The line said "you are the uncreated one."  Isn't it amazing how you can listen to a song over and over before you actually HEAR it?  

Anyway, that phrase "the uncreated one" has stuck in my mind.  God is so unique.  He is the only one who is uncreated.  Everything on earth, and for that matter above the earth and in the sea, the billions of stars and the entire universe was made....created by Him.  But, He, God was NOT created for He has always been.
Incredible thought!

He says He is the great "I AM"; not the I was or I will be.  Nope, He and He alone is the great I AM.   He has always been, He will always be.

Everything else had a beginning.

Genesis 1:1 says "In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the earth."  They had a beginning and He was their creator.  He spoke and they were.  For man and woman, He touched them.  They were the only created things that God actually put his hands on.  He formed them with His very hands and breathed His life, His ETERNAL life into them and "they became a living soul".  More importantly they became eternal souls, for from that moment on they were eternal beings.  Though our outer man perishes and decays after death, our soul lives for eternity.  WE had a beginning, but will have no end.  God had neither a beginning nor will He have an end.  That makes Him unique over every other created being.

He is immortal, we are mortal.

He is perfect, we are sinful.

He is holy, we are unholy.

He is righteous, we are unrighteous.

He is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent; we are none of those.

Yes, God is the one and only.  The creator  and sustainer of the universe.  The Master Designer.  Savior.  Redeemer.  Lover of our souls.  And amazingly HE loves us!!!  Can you grasp that?  God, the great I AM, the one and only God, loves YOU and ME?!!!  Think on that amazing fact today and be blessed!!

Thursday, June 9, 2011


I am a huge fan of K-love radio.  We wake up to it every morning and often hear some of the most uplifting, heart-warming stories to begin our day. 

Yesterday, I heard the morning commentator, Lisa, share a story about her little boy.  As often little boys will do, he had asked her to marry him.  Without trying to crush him, she explained that they would have to ask Daddy.  (Good way of passing the buck, don't you think? HA)  Then, still persistent, the little boy said, "Mommy, I will NEVER un-wuv you!"  Oh my goodness.  Is that not precious!?

I immediately thought of our sweet Heavenly Father who promises to never UN-WUV us!!  Never, ever, no way, no how!!!!!!!!!!!!  Paul puts it a little more eloquently:

"For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus." 

To be "un-loved" you have to first be loved.  It's like un-tying your shoes.  First they must be tied, then they can be un-tied.  SO to be un-loved, means you were loved and then, for whatever reason, the loving stopped.

Who has "un-loved" you?

A spouse?

A friend?

A parent?

A child?

A friend?

A fiance?

Not much else in this worlds hurts as badly as being "un-loved".  To have your love spurned or turned away, to feel the knife of rejection stab your heart is a terribly painful thing. 

But God promises us that HE is the one in all the world who will never ever let you down and never let you go.  His love is eternal, never ending.  And He proved it by giving up His only Son so that our sin debt could be paid and we could spend eternity, basking in His love. 

There is a song that says "O love that will not let me go".  That is the love of God.  Today be assured that no matter who on earth may "un-love" you; God never will.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


Our pastor has been preaching a series entitled "In the Blink of an Eye".  I hope it will end soon.  Not that it has not been good.  It has.  But that is part of the problem.  It has been TOO relevant!!

It seems ever since he began this series several weeks ago, one "example" after another has occurred that brought home the term "in the blink of an eye". 

The crux of this series has been that the in the "blink of an eye", three things happen:

Life Happens

Tragedy Occurs

You are Spiritually Changed

The beginning Sunday of this series, our pastor showed photos from the recent tornados in Missisippi and Alabama as well as photos from the earthquake/tsunami in Japan.  In the "blink of an eye" those areas were devastated, destroying homes and lives.  I have driven down the streets of Smithville, MS and I have talked with some of the survivors of this small town of 900.  I have heard their stories of how their lives totally changed "in the blink of an eye".  They will never be the same.

In the days following we have seen the death of a baby,  a tragic car accident that claimed the lives of several family members, the drowning of a young man celebrating his best friend's upcoming marriage, several instances of sudden illnesses that have threatened the lives of several of our members, more severe storms in Joplin, MO as well as international tragedies in war torn areas. 

Just a couple of months ago, I wrote a blog entitled WINDS OF CHANGE (4-3-11).  In it I wrote about a friend from church who came home to discover her precious husband of 31 years gone home to be with the Lord.  This week, exactly 2 months from the day of his funeral, my friend joined him, losing her battle with leukemia.  It was sudden and unexpected.  She was gone "in the blink of an eye".  Life happens.  Tragedy occurs.

I attended her funeral today.  Sad because two young men have lost their mother only months after losing their dad.  Sad because parents lost a child, something that is just not natural.  No parent should have to bury their child.  And two sisters lost a sibling and a friend and a hole is left in this family. sad as that all is, this was NOT a sad funeral.  Why?  Because she had been spiritually changed as a child.  She had put her faith and trust in the Lord Jesus, and today though we wept, we did not weep as those who have no hope.  The body we saw in that pink casket was merely the shell of the woman we knew.  In the "blink of an eye" she was changed, from mortality to immortality (I Cor. 15:54)  and she is now present with the Lord.(II Cor. 5:8)  And, those of us who have also been spiritually changed, will one day see her in Heaven.  That gives each of us cause to rejoice!!

Yes, life can happen in the "blink of an eye"...our world as we know it can turn upside down.  But when you know the Lord Jesus, you are held in His mighty right hand and nothing can pluck you out of it!!  (John 10:28)

Monday, June 6, 2011


"The words of the Lord are pure words."  Psalm 12: 6

PURE words.

Are YOUR words "pure"?

Words are powerful things.  They can build us up or tear us apart.  One word can make our day or one word can crush us.  Words spoken in anger to a child can leave wounds that last a lifetime.  Harsh words spoken to a tender soul can cause a person to withdraw within themselves, never to return.  One lie can send an innocent man to prison for life.  Kind words can heal a broken heart.

We speak thousands of words a day...some of us more than others.  But are our words PURE?

"The words of the Lord are pure words."

Never a word from His  mouth has been uttered that is:


Can we say the same about our own?

The Lord had a lot to say about our words.  The book of Proverbs provides a guide on how we should handle our words.  Do you see yourself in any of these verses?

"There is one who speaks rashly, like a piercing sword; but the tongue of the wise brings healing." 12: 18

"Truthful lips endure forever, but a lying tongue, only a moment." 12: 19

"Lying lips are DETESTABLE to the Lord but faithful people are His DELIGHT." 12: 22

"Anxiety in a man's heart weighs it down, but a good word cheers it up." 12: 25

"The one who guards his mouth protects his life; the one who opens his lips invites his own ruin." 13: 3

"A gentle answer turns away wrath, but harsh words stir up anger." 15: 1

"The tongue that heals is a tree of life, but a devious tongue breaks the spirit." 15: 4

"The mind of the righteous person thinks before answering, but the mouth of the wicked blurts out evil things." 15:28

"The intelligent person restrains his words, and one who keeps a cool head is a man of understanding." 17: 27

"Even a fool is considered wise when he keeps silent, discerning when he seals his lips." 17: 28

"Life and death are in the power of the tongue" 18: 21

" A word spoken at the right time is like golden apples on a silver tray."" 25: 12

"Let another praise you and not your own mouth, a stranger and not your own lips." 27: 2

"[a wise woman] opens her mouth with wisdom and loving instruction is on her tongue." 31: 26

"The words of the Lord are PURE."

What about yours?

Sunday, June 5, 2011


My granddaughter has an incredible memory!  I am amazed at how keen it is even for a 5 year old.

Every Christmas I put up things around our house so that I can make room for our Christmas decorations.  In our hall bathroom, I have 3 little monkeys which sit on the back of the commode.  "See no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil".  I replaced them during the holidays with some beach Santas and then when Christmas was over, I put them back.  As soon as she saw them, she said quite distressed,

"Mimi!!  You did it wrong."

 I had no clue what she was talking about.  When I went to see, she was pointing to the monkeys.

 "This is NOT right, " she exclaimed.

I was still in the dark.  When I questioned her further, she explained that they were not in the right order.  Not that I had them in any particular order to start with, BUT...she remembered how they had been, and expected them to be put back the way they went!  Are you kidding me?  I have to make pictures of most things in the house BEFORE I remove them, so I can look at the pictures after Christmas to remember where it went.  Ah to have the memory of a child! 

Yes, I can definitely tell as I get older that my memory is diminishing.  My husband says it is because we have so much more to dig through to find what we are looking for in our minds.  Sounds good to me.  Still, I hate that I cannot retain things like I used to, especially what I read. 

I can read things today and think "Oh, I want to remember that.  That is SO good."  And then, it's gone.  Depressing for sure.

I was reading a devotional this morning about trusting God for BIG things.  I remember once reading a book in which it talked about praying BIG, HAIRY, AUDACIOUS prayers for our kids.  I began to look through my collection of books, hoping I'd remember WHICH book I'd read it in so I could read the rest of what went along with that.  As I began to peruse my collection, I saw books I did not remember reading, yet upon opening them, saw where I'd underlined things in them.  Yet I do not remember a thing about them!! 

Our memory regarding God is a lot like that, too.  He does things for us again and again, yet the next time we need Hiim, we doubt that He can do it.  We trust Him with one situation, but the very next situation which arises, finds us wavering in our faith that He will come through for us.  How quickly we forget His faithfulness to us. 

Psalm 143: 5 says "I remember the days of old; I meditate on all thy works.."  God puts a lot of value on remembering for when we remember what He has done, it increases our faith in what He can and will do in the future.  When we remember the feats of Elijah, we are reminded that the same God who answered Elijah's prayer will answer ours IF we trust God like Elijah did. 

"There is no reason why we should not ask for large things and without doubt we shall get large things if we ask in faith and have the courage to wait with patient perseverance upon Him, meantime doing those things whihc lie within our power to do. 

We cannot create the wind or set it in motion, but we can set our sails to catch it when it comes; we cannot make the electricity, but we can stretch the wire along which it is to run and do its work; we cannot in a word, control the Spirit, but we can so place ourselves before the Lord and so do those things He has bidden us to do, that we will come under the influence and power of His mighty breath."  Streams in the Desert

Of all the things we must retain in our memory, let us not forget the things God has done for us, His great faithfulness, His abiding love, His untold forgiveness and grace.  For it is in the remembering that we are strengthened for the journey still ahead. 

Saturday, June 4, 2011


"The Lord caused the sea to go back....all that night."  (Exodus 14:21).

God is always working in our lives, even in the dark....ESPECIALLY in the dark. 

It is difficult for us to see Him in the dark times of our lives.  Yet He is always there. 

For the children of Israel, it was not when they awoke to find that they could cross the Red Sea that God began to work, but rather He had been at work all night long...IN THE DARK.  Were they worried and fretting about what they were going to do? Probably.  Just like we do.  Yet all the time God was working.

And, notice it was ALL the night long that He was working, working til the light of morning came.  In our dark nights, God is working even though we cannot see Him.  He will continue to work til the light breaks through and the answers or solutions come.  We must just remember HE IS WORKING. 

Truly it is in those dark nights that we really come to know Him for it is then that we cling to Him, knowing that without Him we will never make it.  Isaiah 45: 3 says "And I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places that you may KNOW that I am the Lord who call you by name".  God has treasures and riches He wants to give to us, but He reserves those for the dark nights of the soul.   It is there that we really get to know Him like we've never known him before. 

The next time you find yourself in the dark, just remember that God is working and He will continue to work IN THE DARK til the light breaks through.  You are never in the dark alone. He is with you, He is protecting you and He will bring you out into the light in His time.  "...weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning." Psalm 30: 5b

"All that night" the Lord was working
Working in the tempest blast,
Working with the swelling current
Flooding, flowing, free and fast.

"All that night" God's children waited---
Hearts, perhaps in agony
With the enemy behind them,
And, in front, the cruel sea.

"All that night" seemed blacker darkness
Than they ever saw before,
Though the light of God's own presence
Near them was, and sheltered o'er.

"All that night" that weary vigil
Passed; the day at last did break
And they saw that God was working
"All that night" a path to make.

"All that night", O child of sorrow,
Canst thou not thy heartbreak stay?
Know thy God in darkest midnight
Works, as well as in the day.
---Streams in the Desert

Friday, June 3, 2011


It seems that the older I get, the slower I get and the less I get done.  It is VERY frustrating!!  My TO DO list is from here to Texas and no hope of ever getting it all done.  Not just the needful things, of which there are many, but also the "want to do's", the little projects that I have in mind and really would like to do as soon as I find the time. 

A few years ago when I began this blog, I fully intended to write it every day.  And, I did for a while.  Then it seemed that life just got busier and busier and I began to skip a day here and there.  Then it became weeks and often even months.  I enjoyed doing it and hoped that it was a blessing to others as well, yet the time to devote to it seem to elude me.

I joined our church's Christian Writer's Circle with great intentions and hopes of one day publishing something, a dream I've had since I was a little girl. But, it was not long until the reality hit me that that was one dream that would most likely never happen .  Still, I enjoyed writing the blog, so I continued. 

The intention of this blog has never been about me.  It has always been my hope that it would be a source of encouragement and blessing to someone, even just one person.  My passion in life is to point others to my Savior, Jesus Christ, to help them come to the realization that He loves them and to understand just how awesome it is to have a relationship with Him.  It is not about religion but relationship!!  And He is such a personal God.  He cares about every detail of our lives. 

In recent weeks, I've been approached by several people who have asked me "Why are you not writing your blog any more?"  Surprised, I came to realize that maybe more people were reading than I knew.   So it is with great joy that I attempt to begin again. 

I hope that you will be blessed!

Sunday, April 3, 2011


It is often said of Memphis weather, "If you don't like the weather, just stick around because by tomorrow it will be totally different!"  How true. 

As I sit her at my computer writing, the winds outside are gusting 30-40 mph.  Windows are groaning and walls are creaking.  Tomorrow storms are predicted to blow through and then it will most likely be silent. 

Change is like that.  It blows into our world, often wreaking havoc and leaves things turned upside down in the aftermath.

A friend of mine came home last Thursday to find her husband had suddenly and unexpectedly gone home to be with the Lord.  In one moment she went from being married, to being a widow, from having a mate and best friend of 31 years to being all alone.  Her world has been turned upside down.

We saw the destruction that just a few moments in time brought to Japan a few weeks ago.  One moment people were at their desks, going about their jobs, the next their whole world was shaken, literally.  Then as if to add insult to the injury, the tsunami swept across the countryside, leaving massive destruction in its path.  Not just in terms of buildings, but in terms of lives.  Suddenly entire families were missing.  Children were left at school, waiting for the parents that would never return.  One minute life was normal.   The next they were orphans.  One minute they had a home.  The next they were homeless.  The winds of change.........

All of us have experienced the wind of change....

From being employed to unemployed....

From being a friend to being a foe....

From being happy to being sad....

From being healthy to being very ill or even at death's door....

From being number one seed in a big tournament to being out of the game....

Not all change is bad, however.  There are many changes that affect us in a positive way. 

From being unemployed to gainfully employed....

From being childless to being pregnant....

From being alone to having someone special in your life...

From being under your parents' roof to being on  your own....

From being a nobody to being famous....

From barely making it to being successful....

From being lost and on your way to Hell, to being saved and on your way to Heaven!!!!

From being a little known team to being in the championship game!!

Yes, the winds of change blow through all of our lives.. sometimes for the good and sometimes not.  But through it all one thing remains the same .....JESUS.  He never changes.  He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow.

I leave you today with this thought... a little poem I copied in my Bible years ago:

"Change and decay all around I see
O thou Who changes not,
Abide with me."

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Don't you just love the way God takes care of us?  Even in the little bitty, everyday things....things like a shoebox?

Yesterday, because my daughter had something to do early, she dropped my 4 year old granddaughter off at my house so I could take her to preschool an hour later.  When she arrived, the first thing my daughter asked me was "Do you have an empty shoebox?"  I did and told her I'd get one from the attic.  My granddaughter needed to take one that day for a preschool project. 

Simple request.  But between the question and her leaving, we covered the instructions about things in the backpack, lunch and seeing the granddaughter's newly painted fingernails.  Thoughts of the shoe box went right out the door with my daughter.

We got ready, I dropped off my granddaughter at preschool and then I went on about my day.  Gym and then shopping at Target, where I spent close to an hour or more.   I "just happened" to buy a pair of shoes while there.  They were not on my list, but needed them and when I saw them, decided I'd go ahead and get them. 

It was after noon when I checked out and as the cashier drew the brown shoebox across the scanner, a light went off in my head.  "SHOEBOX!! SHOEBOX! Oh No, I forgot the shoebox!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"  Panic struck, knowing that when the teacher had called for the students to get their shoeboxes, my granddaughter would quickly have realized that Mimi had forgotten hers.  I knew the result of that devastating realization to one who wants everything to be PERFECT!!!!  It would have meant a total meltdown.  And it was all Mimi's fault!!!:(

I left Target trying to decide what to do next.  Call the school?  Just apologize and hope the teachers brought extras for those who forgot?  As I was driving down the road, it hit me.  Well, Dummy, you HAVE a shoebox in the car.  Take it to her.  Maybe....just maybe they haven't done the project yet.  "Please God...don't let them have done the project yet."

I sped toward the school, and as I entered I wondered who I would get to go check for me as I knew I could not go in the classroom.  And, lo and behold who should be checking in at the desk but her beloved teacher from last year!!  I explained my dilemma and she asked if I wanted her to take the shoebox inside.  "NO!  If she has already missed it, that will just upset her more. " So she peaked inside and reported "I see a lot of shoeboxes....but, let me check with the teacher and see if they've used them yet."  She disappeared and returned with a big smile.  "They haven't done the project yet.  Give me your box and I'll give it to her." 

Whew!! I was SO relieved and SO grateful to God who cares about the little things in our days.  No this was not an earthshattering thing.  It was not life or death (except to a 4 year old).  But He understood my plight and He intervened out of His great mercy and grace.  He understood the desire of a grandmother's heart not to cause distress to her granddaughter.  He loved His children so much, He graciously met our need. 

God cares about everything in our lives...the BIG and the small.  The important and the not-so-important.  He is not interested just in the tsunamis that shatter a nation like Japan, but He is also interested in the tsunamis that wreck our personal worlds.  He is also interested in the minute, mundane things that can sometimes shake our world too.  God is in the details of our lives.  And I, for one, am so glad He is!!

Monday, March 28, 2011


Within every human heart, there is a longing....a deep-seated desire....a need to be loved.  God made us to be relational beings.  And, He desires relationship with us.  He gave us free will....we are not robots with no choice in the matter.  We can CHOOSE to love Him or reject Him, won't change the way He feels about us.  Just consider this...

God's love is:



Never ending...





He never lets us down and never lets us go....NO MATTER WHAT!

He will never abandon you.

He will never forsake you.

He will never reject you.

He does not look at the color of your skin, the kind of car you drive or where you live.  He is not impressed by your bank account, your dress size or the initials that come after your name.  He does not care whether you can spell correctly, operate a computer or know how to operate an iphone.  He is not interested in how many friends you have or don't have; how many jobs you've lost or how many times you've failed your ACT test.  None of that is important to Him.

His love is patient, kind, never rude, never self-seeking and never boastful.  His love never behaves improperly, never envies, is never evil at its core.  His love bears all things, believes all things and endures all things. 

If you are seeking this kind of love from any other source than from Him, you are going to be disappointed.  No human can love like this.  So no matter how wonderful your spouse is, how precious your children are, how devoted and loving your parents are, how fabulous your best friend is....eventually each one of those will disappoint you, let you down, hurt your feelings or fail you in some way.  Not necessarily intentionally.  In fact more than likely definitely NOT intentionally.  But they each have a sin nature so you might say it is the nature of the beast.   And, that is not all.  You, my friend, will also fail at love too.  YOU will disappoint, fail, let down, hurt feelings and fail to measure up in some way on someone's love scale. 

But God is different.  His love is different.  Because He IS love.  It is His very nature.  He can be nothing less than love.

So today, I urge you to just think how blessed you are to be loved by Him.  Yes you.  No matter who you are, where you are, or what your resume says about you.   Know this:  GOD LOVES YOU!  No strings attached.  Nothing you have to do to earn it. 

God doesn't say "I'll love you IF...."

God doesn't say "I won't love you unless...."

GOD JUST LOVES!!  And He loves YOU!!! 

Take a moment and really absorb that thought.  Bask in it.  Revel in it.  Let it soak into your inner most being.  Meditate on that thought for the rest of the day.