Tag Archives: life

December 7

Today’s prayer:

Be merciful unto me, O Lord: for I cry unto thee daily. Rejoice the soul of thy servant: for unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul. For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.
Psalms 86:3‭-‬5 KJV

Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your faithfulness. Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for life, love, and truth. Lord Jesus, You know the cries of my heart. You know the joys and sorrows of this life. You understand all the inner workings of all that is happening, far better than I. Lord Jesus, I trust You. I wait upon You with open hands. Take what You will and give what is best. Let my life be a service unto You and please place in me Your Word. Lord, please let our lives bring glory to Your name. Lord, I lift up those in need. That the widow, the fatherless, the weak, the sick, hurting, the lost, and the forgotten will be touched by Your Word, Your love, Your truth. Lord, please break in pieces the lies, deception, and abuse. Let those who fear You, purify their ways and live devotedly to You alone. Please begin with me and my family. Please help us to be Your servants, looking for nothing more than service to You each day. Thank You for Your faithfulness. Thank You for Your love. Thank You for Your truth. In Your precious name I humbly ask these things. Amen.

October 23

Today’s prayer:

When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.” Mark 8:34‭-‬38 NKJV

Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for truth. Lord, I never want to be ashamed of You, nor do I want You to be ashamed of me. Lord, I want to live as losing this life and gaining eternal life with You in heaven. Lord Jesus, it is not easy to understand how to handle each circumstance, but I thank You for showing me the way. Thank You for always being faithful and walking with me through it all. Thank You for shining Your light of truth into my life. Lord, not my will be done, but Thine. Teach me what Your plans are for today and help me not grow too eager to look into tomorrow, for each day has enough trouble of it’s own. Thank You for always being my safety and refuge in times of trouble. Lord, please help me to trust You with everything today. Thank You for Your unending love. Amen.

Answers

It’s been several days.

I’ve been seeking the Lord for direction and guidance for our family.

My prayer: “Lord let us know what Your will is.”

The answer came yesterday.

But it didn’t look like what I expected.

It wasn’t a comfortable circumstance.

Yet, our direction was clear.

As I went to bed, I thanked God for His direction, although was still a little emotionally prickled by the form.

I hadn’t realized it until this morning.

Without really thinking about the words my emotions were asking God, “Why did the answer have to come that way?”

With my first thoughts this morning He answered.

You wanted direction and I gave it.

I chose that tool to make it very clear to you and your husband.

And my response had been to be focused on my own discomfort, rather than praising God for answering.

I had to wonder.

Would my husband and I have accepted His guidance if He’d used a different circumstance?

I can say, my perspective changed in that moment.

I began to praise God for His direction and guidance.

My heart thanked Him for His Sovereignty.

I looked at my life and began to see a long series of circumstances which were uncomfortable, some very painful, and I could look back at how God’s hand of direction was in each.

Although I didn’t enjoy walking through those things, I am praising God for them.

He has used trials, pain, and all manner of life’s struggles to direct, guide, and hone me.

As difficult as those things were, I am praising God for them.

As uncomfortable as some things are, I’m praising God for them.

I don’t want to live without Him, and He said to take up my cross and follow Him.

He wasn’t walking to a picnic when He carried His cross.

I shouldn’t expect one either.

Following Christ, carrying His cross, brings so much reward.

His path broke the chains of sin and death forever!

Then He rose, and He walked a little longer with mankind on the Earth.

And now He is preparing a place for all who believe in His name, what He did, and who He is, God’s Son.

Part of that preparation is a wedding feast, the marriage of the Lamb.

Yes, I want to carry my cross and follow Him.

For the days of struggle, trials, and pain are few compared to the joy which eternity holds.

I praise God for His path for me.

And I’ll take a wedding feast over a picnic any day!

Psalm 16:11 NKJV — You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Daily living

Each day I try to follow a pattern.

Prayer begins before my toes touch the floor.

Praise and thanksgiving for all God has done which my sleepy mind can grasp.

Then, as I listen to my husband getting ready for work, or on days when he gets to sleep in (rare indeed), my heart begins to lift him up.

Prayer for his heart and mind. Covering his day and his seasons. Lifting up his physical body and asking for strength and ability.

Since we were newly married I’ve prayed for him to be like Joseph.

“And his master saw that the LORD was with him and that the LORD made all he did to prosper in his hand.” Genesis 39:3 NKJV

Lately, I’ve added to my prayers for him that God would bring about in him the traits of a Patriarch. A man who leads his whole family (wife, children, grandchildren) in the ways of the LORD.

Men like Job and Abraham.

Often my physical needs require attention by this time, but my prayers continue as I take care of my needs.

Each of our children, including our son-in-law are in my prayers.

Daily, I lift each one before the Lord and ask Him to bless them with a relationship with Him which will bud and blossom into traits of the people of God.

Often, the Lord brings specific scripture to mind and I pray that over the individual.

Then the Lord brings dear people to my heart and I begin to pray for them, however I feel God is calling me to.

After all this, I often begin my day.

Depending on what is on my calendar as well as what time it is, I make plans for my next steps.

One of my regular daily living habits is to ask God what I’m wearing.

This might sound strange, but getting dressed used to cost me so much time.

I’d try things on and then change my mind. My emotions getting more and more anxious.

Years ago when I was running very late for getting to the Academy I stood in front of my closest with a feeling of desperation.

Ask Me.

Things couldn’t go worse so I figured “why not?”. I took a deep breath and asked. “God, what do You want me to wear today?”

I was stunned at the instant response.

It didn’t take me even five minutes to get dressed and I was ready for my day.

I’ve never gone back to the old way.

Each day I ask the Lord what I’m wearing and every day it’s a joy.

The conversation I begin when first awake goes on throughout the day.

Whether I’m at the doctor’s office or teaching our children or blogging, I am speaking with the Lord or listening for His voice or singing a praise song to Him.

Most of the time my words are internal.

However, my family has gotten used to me and when I forget and actually speak aloud to Jesus they normally just smile.

Daily living with Jesus means I often have to surrender my own ideas about life.

At times it’s my schedule.

Other days it’s my physical abilities.

Many times it’s my concerns over the future.

Yet, it’s a daily life of living for Jesus.

I’m certain the disciples didn’t know the schedule for each week.

They simply lived with Jesus and did the task at hand.

Although our culture is time and schedule oriented, I feel called to surrender those things into the hands of Jesus.

Yes, it’s important I show up for appointments on time, pay bills, and stick to the curriculum so we complete all the requirements.

No, I’m not a machine and I’m not in control. If life brings something unexpected my first duty is to follow Jesus and handle each circumstance as He requests.

Sometimes that means an extra five minutes listening to a stranger.

Other times it means speaking with a family member or dealing with a heart issue.

Sometimes it means asking for help and admitting my limitations.

Daily life has changed for us so many times and in so many ways.

Yet, the one thing which has carried me through each transition is my daily walk with Jesus.

Dear Reader, I’ll be honest. This transparency into my every day is out of obedience. In no way do I feel my walk with Jesus to be the only way to walk nor am I the person who “has it all together”. If anything it’s far from that.

I understand each person’s walk is unique and therefore none look exactly alike. But I am certain we can encourage one another in sharing how Jesus walks with us as individuals.

I pray my transparency will bless and encourage you.

And I’d love to hear from you. What does your day with Jesus look like?

A life of miracles

As an infant, crawling around beneath my father on the carpet, I found and swallowed an almond whole.

The Korean War had left my dad with forty percent loss of hearing, so he didn’t realize he’d dropped the almond nor that I’d swallowed it.

The doctor didn’t know either.

All he did know was that I was obviously in a lot of pain and running a high fever, with apparently no reason.

But God worked a miracle.

The only reason I know anything about the circumstance is the almond ended up in my diaper.

Mom made sure I knew how God had worked in my infant-hood to heal and protect me.

At the age of four, I had to undergo surgery.

My adenoids were causing me hearing loss.

It was definitely God who walked me through the frightening moment of being taken from my parents to prep me for surgery.

The miracle for me was how quick it all seemed.

I remember the nurse taking me away and then I was waking up to my dad sitting next to me and hearing it was all over.

For my parents the miracle was in my condition.

No longer did I have chronic ear infections, and my hearing was perfect.

At age six I was rushed into emergency surgery.

Through my own foolishness, I’d been hit in the right eye by a stick from the ground.

It had broken off inside my eye.

The best eye surgeon the hospital could get worked to repair the damage.

Again, God showed up.

By a complete miracle my retina was unharmed.

Although, I’d lost part of my iris and had a tear in my cornea, there was minimal damage considering what had happened.

Weeks of antibiotics followed, due to the obvious danger of bacterial infection from the stick.

People all over were praying for me.

God answered.

I never had an infection, infact my eye sight in that eye was 20-45 for many years.

At age 17, I again under went emergency surgery.

My appendix was on the verge of bursting.

God was there.

The miracle this time was the fact that it didn’t burst and recovery was swift.

At the age of twenty-one, I went through my third emergency surgery.

While giving birth to our first daughter I’d torn my cervix.

It had gone unnoticed and five weeks later I tore it again.

After nearly passing out from loss of blood I was admitted to the prep room.

God stepped in with a miracle.

I didn’t die.

At the age of 34, I returned to the hospital for surgery.

I need a hysterectomy.

I’d been unwell for nine months.

My slender frame was down to 90 lbs.

My body was in such constant pain that I couldn’t sleep and eating was very minimal.

God preformed a miracle.

My first conscious thought was of relief and joy.

I was out of pain.

The recovery was long and slow, but I improved.

I’m 42 now.

It’s been almost a year since I was diagnosed with asthma.

It’s been more than a year since my family has had to learn how to adjust, because, “Mom is sick”.

It’s been about a month since we moved and it has definitely been a miracle.

And God hasn’t finished yet.

He’s healing me every day.

He’s walked me through so much.

My life is a testimony to the goodness of God.

His Mercy, faithfulness, and love are so evident.

I’ve told all this before and I’m sure I’ll tell it all again.

It’s a story worth telling:

A life full of miracles.

But mine is not the only one.

Every life is surrounded by God’s miraculous works.

Whether they are recognized or not.

Every breath is a miracle.

Each beautiful life is a miracle.

I’ve shared mine.

How will you share yours?

Down river

image

Life is a funny thing.

It can be all consuming,
each day full to overflowing.

Yet it steadily moves on.

Days flow into weeks which ripple into years.

Never are we in one day or one hour or one minute for a lifetime.

Often it is easy to focus on the moment, the emotions of the minute, 
the experience in the present.

However,
the choices in today,
roll down.

The future of next year, next month, next week is affected by the actions,  attitudes, and how one articulates the moment.

Looking back on the hours spent teaching our toddlers how to act, when to respond,  and what a consequence is (both good and bad), I’m thankful for the investment.

As they become teens and young adults those hours pay off in their lives as kindness, thoughtfulness, understanding, and teachability.

As we walk through the years of learning who they want to become, the hours of long talks, tears and jokes, activities, academics, and friends
it is time well spent.

Some day it will pay off “down stream” as they work and begin their own families.

Even in my life I can think back to times when my course seemed to give two differing channels and a decision was all that kept me from one channel instead of the other.

At times I look back and see the channel chosen was full of bumps and hard sharp rocks causing me difficulty.

Every time I have chosen a course based on Scripture, grounded in my walk with Jesus, I’ve never been alone.

Though it might not be the desired way,
it may not look to be the smoothest,
invariably
when viewed from
“down river”
it was the best
channel.

The Bible even talks about our actions today planting seeds which grow in our future.

“Do not be deceived,  God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.” Gal. 6:7

As the moments flow into years,
I pray
that God will continue His grace and mercy,
guidance and peace
as my life flows from one thing to the next.

I want to always be in the channel He has dug for me.

Because down river, when life as I know it is drawing to the end,
I want to be able to smile at the
river of my life,
knowing it was Jesus Christ
who was reflected in the water.