Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, And you perish in the way, When His wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him. Psalms 2:12 NKJV
Dear Lord Jesus, Thank You for Your patience. You are long-suffering and full of mercy. Your ways are good and Your paths are perfect. Lord Jesus, thank You for Your sacrifice and for Your love. Lord, today I look to You and I humbly request that You place Your hand upon my life and the lives of my loved ones. Lord, please purify our hearts and minds that we might serve You without hindrance. Lord, please purify Your people, let hearts be drawn to You and that they might put away anything which would stand in the way of serving You fully. Lord Jesus, please heal our land. Let the hearts of the people be drawn to You, to find salvation and to learn to walk with integrity. Lord, please let Your name be known throughout the world, for You are the God who sees us. Thank You for Your love. I love You, Jesus. Amen.
Honestly, at one point in our lives I didn’t think I’d ever be able to say that: father and son.
When I found out, many years ago, I was pregnant I assumed we were having another girl.
We already had three daughters.
It just seemed to be logical to assume we were having a fourth.
I was wrong and more than a little surprised when the ultrasound showed a son.
Children are a blessing and each is a unique treasure.
I’m certain we would be just as happy if God had given us another daughter, but it’s been fun to have a son.
(Although he doesn’t always like being the youngest of three sisters. It can be kind of like having four Moms.)
He loves each of his sisters.
He has the distinction of being the only boy, so sometimes he gets Dad all to himself.
It’s been fun to watch.
My husband and our son doing things together, being “guys”.
When they came home Sunday evening from six days of camping and hunting I was glad.
They were super tired, but had enjoyed the time.
My phone alerted me to a text this morning and it contained the picture at the top of this post.
Father and son, 2020.
Little moments and memories like these are so valuable.
I hadn’t realized what precious gems they were until our oldest girl married and moved.
Now that we are down to only two at home, I find so much joy in capturing these treasures.
And I am reminded…
God feels the same way about me.
Jeremiah 31:3 NKJV — The LORD has appeared of old to me, saying: “Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.
And He is a part of these lovely memories with my family.
After all He gave me each and every one of them!
It is another proof of His incredible love for me.
I can praise Him during these moments and I can cherish the love He gives me for them and through them.
With each day, through each circumstance, I can walk in the love of Jesus.
I can abide in His presence.
I can show this same love to those around me, especially to my children and my husband.
And I can treasure these moments.
Praise the Lord!
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You so much for my family. Thank You for my husband. Thank You for each of our children. Thank You for our son-in-laws and grandchildren. Thank You for so many others we love, family and friends. Lord Jesus, please continue to help me see how blessed I am. Please continue to show me how to cherish the moments. Lord Jesus, You are so good, so faithful, so true. Help those who have yet to know You to find the truth. Let them know how loved they truly are. Thank You. Amen.
Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew, Bethesda, having five porches. In these lay a great multitude of sick people, blind, lame, paralyzed, waiting for the moving of the water. For an angel went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the water; then whoever stepped in first, after the stirring of the water, was made well of whatever disease he had. Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?” John 5:2-6 NKJV
The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; but while I am coming, another steps down before me.” John 5:7 NKJV
He didn’t understand Who he was speaking to.
He couldn’t see past his need.
He wasn’t expecting to be healed because he had no one to help him into the water.
What came next must have been outside his ability to guess.
Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” John 5:8 NKJV
And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked. And that day was the Sabbath. John 5:9 NKJV
Can one picture the depth of surprise and elation of this man who had been sick for 38 years?
He didn’t even know Who healed him. (John 5:13)
In Mark we find another man who was seeking healing, but didn’t find it, not a first.
Then one of the crowd answered and said, “Teacher, I brought You my son, who has a mute spirit. And wherever it seizes him, it throws him down; he foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I spoke to Your disciples, that they should cast it out, but they could not.” Mark 9:17-18 NKJV
It doesn’t take much imagination to feel the disappointment and sorrow of this man.
But the story doesn’t end there.
So He asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, “From childhood. And often he has thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” Mark 9:21-24 NKJV
The honesty and humility of this man, this father, is answered.
When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it: “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!” Then the spirit cried out, convulsed him greatly, and came out of him. And he became as one dead, so that many said, “He is dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose. Mark 9:25-27 NKJV
Two men, both received healing from Jesus, but neither of them were expecting what occurred.
Healing often does not come the way one would like nor in the time frame which is desired.
Healing is often not seen as the hand of God, but instead as the working of proper medical treatment or change in lifestyle.
And sometimes healing is something which occurs in the heart instead of the body.
But healing is an everyday occurance.
From the small cut on one’s knee to the restoration of healthy mental attitude, God is in the business of healing.
Where He wants healing to occur for all of mankind is in the relationship between Himself and every single one of us.
Sin leads to death of all sorts, including physical death, and Jesus came to save us from that.
Healing may not always happen when and how and where we would like, but as long as we accept His healing, His payment for our sin, then our souls will be healed.
Truly, healing of the soul is the best place to be made whole.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for both of these stories which remind us that You are in the business of healing. Lord, please help us to realize the importance of allowing You to restore our soul, how much more valuable that is to any other healing. Lord, often we over look the times You have healed and focus on the times we couldn’t see Your healing. Lord, please help us to realize You alone see what is best and we can not. Help us to have faith that You are doing a work of healing even if we do not perceive it. Thank You for Your faithfulness in all things. Thank You for Your salvation which brings us life eternal. Thank You for the way You are continually working to restore our hearts and minds to a right relationship with You. Lord, thank You for loving us so completely. It is in Your name I pray, Jesus. Amen.
The days have swiftly gone, like dried leaves in a strong wind.
How blessed it has been.
God has truly done marvelous things in these three years.
When our Sis married, we gained a son.
Our other children gained a brother.
We all were granted a huge blessing.
For truly, he loves all of us and most importantly, he loves Jesus.
Through this wonderful new family, God has granted such encouragement to us.
Tim has supported Sis as she’s continued to follow her education, because he knows she feels called by God to do it.
And God has blessed them in that.
Both of them have supported us as we walked this road of struggle, first with injuries to Anne and Bell, then with my illness.
Along with that, they opened their home to us.
I spent a major part of last summer living with them while we tried to figure out what to do about my inability to live in our house.
Often Jase or Anne was there as well.
When it was clear God was moving us, Sis packed, and Tim hauled things in his trailer.
They helped unload and unpack when we got in this house.
There are so many little things they have done to bless and encourage us.
Of course the best occurrence in these three years has been our grandchildren.
Both the birth of our first granddaughter, over a year ago, and the expected birth of our first grandson next month.
Near Tim’s birthday, this spring, I asked him how he felt about his birthday.
I can’t recall the exact phrase, but it was something like:
“Really blessed. I had no idea God was going to bless me so much. I have a beautiful wife and I’m the father of two children, although our next is still in the womb. Yeah, I’m really blessed.”
My husband and I agree.
God has truly blessed them and us.
So much has happened in three years.
What an incredible God we serve!
Happy Anniversary, Tim and Sis.
We love you!
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for family. Thank You for creating the entire social and human relations with the first family, Adam and Eve. Lord, none of us deserve Your blessings, but we are so grateful for it. Our hearts are full of wonder at Your works. As we walk into another day, please continue to lead us. We want our families to be a reflection of You to those around us. Thank You so much for these three years. Thank You for our daughter and son-in-law and their children. Thank You for Your love, mercy, and grace poured out upon us. We praise Your holy name, Jesus. Amen.
Many years ago, I learned it’s best if our family doesn’t take long breaks from school.
So, when Jase finished his American History book last week, I knew.
Highschool level World History was next.
I’ll be honest.
My heart had concerns and I took them to the Lord.
I asked the Lord a long list of questions and He answered each one.
So we began on Monday.
Jase did catch that this was not only more difficult, it requires a lot more work.
I was impressed, though.
He didn’t complain.
Easy, it’s not.
Yet, he has jumped in and I’m so thankful.
Change doesn’t come easy for him.
The older I get the more I realize, it’s not easy for me either.
Yet, it’s a blessing.
To grow, stretch, learn, and surrender is so valuable.
Allowing Jesus lordship over every single bit of my life.
Which means I go where He guides.
I live as He directs.
I honor His changes in myself and my life with praise and thanksgiving.
His ways are best.
Including a new challenge.
Jase in highschool.
Yup, our youngest is entering the 9th grade.
When he finishes his science curriculum we are currently doing, he will begin Physical Science.
He’s working away on Prealgebra and of course will go into Algebra 1 when he’s finished.
It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it.
Just like following Jesus.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for change. It’s not what I look forward to, but I know You use it for good in our lives. Lord, please continue to change my heart and mind to be more like Yours. Please continue to use outside circumstances to hone my character. Lord, I humbly request that You help me to be an encouragement and support to others around me who are also experiencing change. Please let me words, prayers, and attitudes be a blessing to those around me. Thank You for loving me enough to encourage me to grow. Thank You for change. Amen.
I ran across this while searching for something else.
So many memories return with a look at our girls grown big before they were large.
How does it happen so fast?
You simply try to deal with life day in and day out while the miracle of childhood turns into the blessings of adulthood.
Those tiny fingers and messy heads and snuggly cuddly bodies have stretched out.
You look and see not a child.
And it’s a common phenomenon.
On Saturday we traveled to a wedding ceremony for a man who we used to know as a little boy.
He too stretched out and changed in the day-to-day growth of children.
But I haven’t forgotten the little boy that he once was.
My voice was absent as I hugged him, all polished and ready for this major life change.
But he looked down on this tiny lady who loves him and said, “I love you”.
I signed, “I love you” hugged him again and let him return to his duties.
What a joy!
To daily walk in this miracle of children growing into men and women.
Only God could come up with such a wonderful blessing as babies to child to adult.
What an incredible honor to have years of daily opportunities to instill character into the future generation.
Of course we can only do that through Jesus.
He’s the One who guides, leads, and directs us, we simply have the privilege of holding, comforting, caring, and training those littles He for so brief a time.
And He adds the blessings of loving other littles too.
Children of our friends or church family.
Neighborhood children or those I was blessed to work with.
So many opportunities to share Jesus with those who have yet to leave childhood behind.
As I cherish memories of my children’s childhood, I praise God for the day-to-day.
Praising Him for today and all those which have come before.
Psalm 35:28 KJV — And my tongue shall speak of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You so much for today! Thank You for all the days we have shared with our children and with others. Thank You for pouring into our lives. Please continue to guide, direct, and teach us as we purpose to do the same with our remaining two who still live with us. Lord, please shine Your truth into other parents, that they might use these precious years of childhood to raise amazing adults. Thank You for Your love of children. Thank You for Your love of each one of us. Thank You for all You are doing day-to-day in our lives. We love You, Jesus. Amen.
Mark 9:20 NKJV — Then they brought him to Him. And when he saw Him, immediately the spirit convulsed him, and he fell on the ground and wallowed, foaming at the mouth. So He asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, “From childhood. And often he has thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.”
Mark 9:23 NKJV — Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”
Mark 9:24 NKJV — Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”
How deeply this story resonates with my heart.
It was yesterday, while driving, a song brought it to mind and I determined to reread the account.
This father is desperate.
His son has been suffering for years.
He’s even been privy to the evil spirit trying to kill his son.
And when he brought him to the disciples, they couldn’t deliver his son.
I can picture how he’s feeling at this juncture.
Mark 9:18 NKJV — “And wherever it seizes him, it throws him down; he foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth, and becomes rigid. So I spoke to Your disciples, that they should cast it out, but they could not.”
Can you hear the agony of disappointment?
He needs a solution.
He needs the Savior.
And he is willing, but he’s also honest.
After everything he has suffered through his son’s suffering, he realizes he has unbelief.
And his actions are perfect.
He cries out to Jesus to help his unbelief.
Mark 9:25 NKJV — When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it: “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!” Then the spirit cried out, convulsed him greatly, and came out of him. And he became as one dead, so that many said, “He is dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose.
What an incredible answer to this father’s suffering!
Can you imagine the testimony both of them had for the rest of their lives?
I imagine it made quite an impact.
I know this story has impacted my life.
To hear Jesus’ response to this father’s honesty, brings me comfort when I’m the one struggling with unbelief in one form or another.
May the Lord always bring this beautiful story to mind whenever I’m battling unbelief.
Because no matter the outcome, I know Jesus will take me by the hand and lift me up.