Sunday, November 30, 2008


Have you ever watched a ski film? You know, the ones with the skier gliding down the snow-covered mountains which are etched against a cobalt blue sky.

Have you ever thought about how the skier gets to the TOP of the mountain? Often he or she is delivered to a base camp, spends at least one night in less than ideal conditions. Then the real work begins - climbing with skis and packs on the back - a long laborious climb to reach the top. Once he reaches the pinnacle, however, it all seems worth it - he has reached his goal. He is ready to soar.

In our lives, we are still climbing . . . daily. Now is the work - often the most difficult and sometimes the most tedious part - striving daily to reach our utmost for His Highest. Soon . . . very soon, we will reach the top - God Himself. In the meantime, let’s not forget why we are climbing. Let’s not grow weary but ask God for all we need to get where we are going. God Himself has promised His help - let’s avail ourselves of all He wants to give us every day so we can reach Him - victoriously!

Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few. Matthew 7:13-14

Heavenly Father, please give me the strength and courage to keep climbing. Help me to keep my eyes on You, my ultimate goal. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Saturday, November 29, 2008


The headlines in the newspaper blared out “DISASTER”. And it was - to the Columbia and its crew of seven astronauts. Their families lost a son
. . . a husband . . . a daughter . . . a wife. As a nation, we mourned the losses and wished we could do something to help lessen the pain.

And, near us, every day in our own family . . . in our own neighborhood . . . in our fellowship . . . there are personal “disasters” taking place. A husband loses his job, a daughter is diagnosed with leukemia, a wife dies unexpectedly, a beloved pet is killed. The list of “disasters” is endless. For those near us, however, there are things we CAN do - a phone call to express our love, a card declaring we care, a home-cooked meal, provision of a listening ear, time spent at a bedside.

God, our Father, is an expert at comforting those in need. If we open our hearts, He will show us clearly in each situation how we can make a difference in the world around us, sharing His comfort.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.
II Corinthians 1:3-4

Heavenly Father, please express Your love through me to a world which so needs
Your comfort. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Friday, November 28, 2008


We’ve all done it - speaking up when we should have been quiet.

Someone we know is faced with a decision to make. In our opinion, it seems like the wrong decision will be made. So we start to speak up . . . expressing our opinion . . . our LOUD opinion which gets louder by the minute. We barrage our friend with words to try to convince a right decision (according to our views). Days go by. We continue to speak up, never allowing a quiet moment for the other person (or ourselves).

Is it possible that our abundance of words could be blotting out God’s voice? Could it be that we are hindering our friend’s ability to hear a bigger Voice than our own? Can we trust our friend to honestly seek the Lord and to hear His voice for themselves?

Can we trust God to get through to our friend?

The next time a friend is faced with a decision, let’s step back, take a calming breath, then prayerfully proceed - maybe by just being silent.

Better is a handful of quietness than two hands full of toil and a striving after wind.
Ecclesiastes 4:6

And the effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust for ever. Isaiah 32:17

Heavenly Father, please help me to hold my tongue instead of spouting off with my opinion. Help me to come to You first. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Thursday, November 27, 2008


Have you ever been accused of being a “Pollyanna” when a difficult situation presented itself and you looked on the bright side of things?

For those of you who don’t know who Pollyanna is - she is a fictional character in a book by the same name. As a child, she was taught by her parents to play the Glad Game. Many difficulties came into Pollyanna’s life but for each one of them, she looked behind the difficulty to see God’s hand at work - something to be glad about and for which to be thankful.

So, the next time someone accuses you of being a Pollyanna, take it as an extreme compliment. Just smile and go on your way with thankfulness ringing in your heart.

Or if you don’t know how to play the Glad Game, ask God to open your eyes to His hand behind any difficulties. There is much to glad about.

Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, O righteous and shout for joy, all you upright in heart.
Psalm 32:11

Heavenly Father, I thank you....

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Babies, we are told by researchers, aren’t born with a sense of trust. They must learn it. Newborn babies have a startle reflex - becoming startled at a touch or a noise, not trusting in the world surrounding them. Notice too how, when a baby is hungry, he or she will cry until the need is met, not trusting that food will automatically be provided. As babies mature and are cared for by loving parents, they begin to trust in their parents’ provision of food, warmth and protection, meeting their needs in a timely fashion.

We, too, as believers who walk daily with Jesus, learn to develop a sense of trust in a kind and loving God as we get to know Him better each day. We see that He offers all of Himself to us, His children. He nourishes us, protects us and is thoroughly trustworthy in all of His care of us. We can trust Him for an eternity.

Trust in him at all times, O people, pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.
Psalm 62:8

Trust in the Lord and do good . . . . Psalm 37:3

Heavenly Father, I thank You that You are totally trustworthy for all I need. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Note: Please notice the father and child in the image.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


When you wake up in the morning, what do you find yourself thinking about?

- Your impossibly long to-do list for the day?
- The irritation of the neighbor’s barking dog?
- An out of control co-worker?
- Your child’s recurring ear infection and mounting doctor’s bills?
- The need for new tires on the car?

When you fall into bed at night, where are your thoughts?

- Still on that frustrating meeting you attended?
- Brooding over a friend’s neglect?
- Upset over the world situation as seen on evening news?
- Concerned for a special project to be completed the next day?

What does it say in Scripture about where our thoughts should be in the morning and evening?

Psalm 92:2 says: It is good to proclaim Your unfailing love in the morning, Your faithfulness in the evening . . . You thrill me, Lord, with all You have done for me! I sing for joy because of what You have done.

Heavenly Father, beginning today, please fill my mornings with proclamations of Your unfailing love and my evenings with songs of Your faithfulness to me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Monday, November 24, 2008


We all know someone who has a problem fulfilling the promises and commitments he or she makes. When a person doesn’t fulfill a promise once, we can assume he or she forgot. If it happens again and again, however, we soon realize that the person is basically untrustworthy and can’t be relied upon.

How glad we can be for a God who, when He promises us something, faithfully fulfills every promise down to the last detail. We can rely on Him who has been faithful in the past and will be faithful to His promises through all eternity.

Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, and make holiness perfect in the fear of God. II Corinthians 7:1

Heavenly Father, I thank You that You are faithful, steadfast and always keep your promises to me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Have you ever kicked yourself for not being able to see a danger area in your life more clearly? Perhaps you took a job which was filled with pitfalls and snares which you couldn’t see at first. Or your child, unseen by you, was having to endure bullying. Or a situation in your home was endured because you couldn’t see the solution.

Often, as is God’s way, He eventually lifts our blindness - we can suddenly see a job for what it is. We can see our child’s torment. We see home situations for what they truly are. And we act as God directs to correct the situation.

Then we begin to kick ourselves asking: “Why didn’t I see this sooner?” We begin to blame ourselves endlessly. But if we will listen to God, He may show us why - that we are human. Maybe we just couldn’t see.

Now we see things imperfectly as in a poor mirror but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely just as God knows me now. I Corinthians 13:13.

Think about the two men on the Emmaus Road after Jesus’ crucifixion. Those men were walking with Jesus and they couldn’t see who He was at that moment . . . until their eyes were open. Then they SAW!

“But they didn’t know who He was because God kept them from recognizing Him.”
Luke 24:16

May we have open eyes and open hearts to see when God reveals Himself to us.

Heavenly Father - thank You for bringing clarity to my eyes and heart in Your timing. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Saturday, November 22, 2008


The other day I was in a facility that had a nursery for young children. If the child couldn’t be still and quiet enough so they wouldn’t disturb the adults during the meeting they would be taken to the nursery. Although not a punishment, the nursery was there for the good of the child and for the good of the adults.

Before entering the meeting, I could hear one mother say, “If you can’t be quiet and behave, you’ll have to go to the nursery.”

I could hear God saying the same thing - If we can’t obey what He has given us to be and do at this stage in our lives with Him, then we, too, must go to the nursery.

I don’t know about you, but I prefer to grow and mature in being a follower of Jesus. I don’t want to stunt my growth because I am hard headed, hard hearted and rebellious. I want to have a soft heart toward my Father. I want to have the mind of Christ - filled with all of the wisdom and knowledge of God which I can now hold. I want the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, my Counselor, who wisely instructs and guides me daily.

How about you? Are you striving for the maturity God longs to give, as His dear children?

You have been Christians a long time now, and you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things a beginner must learn about the Scriptures. You are like babies who drink only milk and cannot eat solid food. And a person who is living on milk isn’t very far along in the Christian life and doesn’t know much about doing what is right. Solid food is for those who are mature, who have trained themselves to recognize the difference between right and wrong and then do what is right. Hebrews 5:12 & 13

Heavenly Father, please train me so I am at the stage of growth where You want me to be at this season in my life - to Your glory. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Friday, November 21, 2008


Have you every found yourself drawing back from people, trying to protect yourself from being inconvenienced . . . again? You receive a call to babysit a neighbor’s child on top of an already overly busy day - you want to run and hide. Your elderly parent calls upon you once again to run out to the store for an item she forgot to pick up - you want to scream in frustration. Your boss needs something done NOW on top of all of the other things he wants done NOW. What do you do?

First, let’s pray and ask God to protect us from the snare of too many requests from too many people.

Second, let’s ask God to give us wisdom, for those requests which do come our way, to know when and how He wants us to serve and when to be still.

There is a fine line between those things we are to do and those we are to leave alone. The dividing line is obedience to God. As we listen to His wisdom, we won’t need to try to protect ourselves from doing too much. God, Himself, will protect us as we walk in obedience Him.

The Lord your God who goes before you will Himself fight for you. Deuteronomy 1:30

Heavenly Father, please protect me from the evil one’s snare of busyness. Please give me Your wisdom in each situation I encounter through my day. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Every day throughout the winter months, our neighbors provided their sheep with bales of hay for food. Because of the snow cover, there was no fresh grass upon which to graze that year. Hay, baled from the previous summer, was the next best thing.

As springtime arrived, the snow melted and fresh green shoots - luscious and delicious for sheep - appeared in the pasture. Because the farmer continued to provide bales of hay, the sheep paid no attention to the freshness of green growing grass all around them. Out of habit they continued to eat the next best thing - hay, missing the real thing - green grass.

Are we like those sheep - some habits so ingrained that we never see the new, the fresh and the different which God may have for us?

As Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. Romans 6:4

Heavenly Father, please open my eyes to see what else You have for me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


When I was in grade school, I thought I’d like to learn to play tennis. Because my family and I lived in sunny southern California, that meant it would be possible to play year round . What I hadn’t realized was that learning to play tennis meant long hours of practice and that included chasing the balls around the court non-stop. I hated it and chose to play volleyball instead.

Recently I found myself enjoying a good tennis match on television. Having had a hint of what skill and endurance is needed in the players, I appreciated all of the hours of practice which have gone into being able to play in any tournament.

One particular day as I watched a game, the players seemed to fade into the background. All I could see was the crowd gathered to watch. I was clearly reminded that in our lives we, too, are being observed by a crowd - in our case, a great cloud of unseen witnesses.

What do they see in our lives, I wonder?

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus . . . . Hebrews 12:1-2

Heavenly Father, I know that we are a school for the angels. Please create in me the attributes which, when seen by unseen witnesses, will bring glory to Your holy Name. In Jesus. Amen.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


We’ve all experienced it! Thank you notes which should be written.

For our birthday, our wedding or at Christmas, we receive gifts given by family and friends. Then, if we are listening to what our mothers taught us, we know that we need to sit down and write a thank you within the week. Do we get busy or do we procrastinate, letting that thank you slip farther and farther back in time until we forget we even received the gift in the first place?

Do we treat God the same way? Daily He gives us gifts. Do we thank Him throughout the day or do we allow days, weeks and years to roll by, taking for granted His good gifts which have our very own name on them?

May we become more sensitive to the gifts He gives daily . . . and may we thank Him the minute we receive and recognize that special something just for us which came directly from His hand.

It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to Thy name, O Most High.
Psalm 92:1

Heavenly Father, thank You for Yourself most of all. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Monday, November 17, 2008


Have you ever felt the Lord admonishing you to take better care of your health? You knew He was nudging you to get more sleep, to eat properly and to decrease the hurry and stress in your life. In obedience to Him, you made a good beginning. You disciplined yourself to get to bed on time in order to get a full eight hours of sleep each night. You changed some of your eating habits and even began to walk every day.

Then something began to happen. A friend needed your listening ear . . . a neighbor needed your help . . . .a child needed extra attention...your elderly parents . . . your spouse . . . your child’s school . . . your place of fellowship. Before you knew it, you no longer were exercising, eating properly or getting the rest you needed. You became exhausted and run down. Instead of obeying the Lord’s directives to you about your health, you began to disobey Him by sacrificing your time and energy above and beyond His directions to you.

No, it is never wrong to serve those whom the Lord places in our lives. It is sin, however, to disobey Him. In this case, as in all instances, obedience to the Lord is better than sacrifice.

To obey is better than sacrifice . . . I Samuel 15:22

Heavenly Father, please help me not to get caught up in “doing good” so that I disobey You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Have you ever noticed that the most important jobs in the world often bring little or no financial remuneration?

For example, parents are on duty and on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Yet I don’t know of one parent, worldwide, who has ever received a paycheck for doing one of the most important jobs to maintain our civilization.

Or look at the high school class secretary who yearly helps plan her high school reunion and publishes a newsletter enabling classmates to keep in touch with one another and their hometown. Her paycheck is non-existent.

Another example is the lady who mops floors in hospital rooms who gets paid minimum wage, yet has the ear of the King as she prays for those with whom she comes in contact through her days.

As we know, the true work done in this world is usually done behind the scenes and is not usually recognized by the world. Yet, in the eyes of God, because He gave that particular work to that particular person, it is of eternal significance.

What is it that you do in your life which has tremendous value in the sight of God?

Lord, when did we see Thee hungry and feed Thee, or thirsty and give Thee to drink? And when did we see Thee a stranger and welcome Thee, or naked and clothe Thee? And the King will answer them, “Truly I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to Me." Matthew 25:37-40

Heavenly Father, I thank You for the work You give me to do day to day. Please help me to be faithful to the task. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Saturday, November 15, 2008


My son videotaped an event held by an amateur rocket launching club. Homemade rockets were blasted into the air to see how high and how far they could travel over the frozen November corn fields.

When my son arrived home and began to edit the footage, he slowed the rocket launches down. Instead of the sound of a blast, we could hear beautiful music within that sound. We were awestruck.

We humans, so used to our own perspective of light and sound, don’t even realize that there is an entire world out there which is beyond our comprehension, created by a God who loves to surprise us.

God truly is awesome! He proves that fact every day!

O Lord my God, Thou art very great! Psalm 104:1

Heavenly Father, there is a whole universe out there which I don’t even know about yet. Thank You!!! In Jesus’ name. Amen

Friday, November 14, 2008


What happens to a frog when the weather turns cool? His body temperature lowers and he slows down. Eventually, during the cold winter months, his body enters a state in which he is alive, yet to all appearances, he is dead. God magnificently made frogs so that their bodies could conform to this world’s temperature and thus, they survive.

Humans are a different matter altogether. God warns us in the Scriptures:

“Do not be conformed to this world."

Why? Because, when we conform ourselves to this world’s ways, bit by bit we drift away from a holy God who desires our holiness.

One unknown author, in fact, put it this way: “The penalty of sin is gradually getting used to it and not caring if it is sin."

Let us not become conformed to this world’s ways!

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

Heavenly Father, I thank You that You command us NOT to conform to this world. Please show me, in my life, what exactly that means. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


In today’s society, many try to emphasize healthy living. That can be good! As we become healthier, we feel we are more able to serve the Lord.

We need, however, to maintain a balance, being careful not to over-emphasize certain aspects of our quest for health. For example, we can all certainly go overboard in our search for the perfect diet and trying to stick to it. We can also become quite obsessive about our exercise regimes. If we don’t walk our mile that day or do those 100 push ups, we feel like a failure in God’s eyes, a real weakling. What will we do if we cannot keep up our health regimes? Will God no longer love us because we aren’t ‘strong’?

God, as usual, has a different view of things. Yes, He stresses in Scripture that our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and we are to care for it. He also says what truly does please Him:

His delight is not in the strength of the horse, nor His pleasure in the legs of a man; but the Lord takes pleasure in those who fear Him, in those who hope in His steadfast love. Psalm 147:10-11

Heavenly Father, I thank You that Your acceptance of me doesn’t rely on any ‘strength’ of my own. I thank You that, even at my weakest moment, Your love shines down on me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Our lives are full of details, aren’t they? At home there is daily upkeep, cooking, cleaning, laundry and a full calendar. Working outside the home brings a myriad of details, too - remembering computer programs, passwords, where objects belong, reports and files. There is an avalanche of details to remember, sort through and act upon.

Why, we ask ourselves, are details so important in the heavenly scheme of things? Apparently God Himself thinks they are important. He sent His own Son into a world where details were important - the world of being a carpenter. Jesus had many details to consider, too - the exact measurement of this or that, precise cutting, proper sanding, pleasing his customers and even sweeping up after a day’s work.

In Scripture we read:

For when Moses was getting ready to build the Tabernacle, God gave him this warning: ‘Be sure that you make everything according to the design I have shown you here on the mountain.’ Hebrews 8:5

Since details were important to God in the past, He certainly is giving us details in our present day lives which we are expected to faithfully oversee and care for, too. Can you think of any in your life?

Heavenly Father, please open my eyes to the details in my life which need attention. Please help me to be faithful in each one You have given me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Here it is - NOVEMBER! We will spend all winter planning and plotting our gardens, dreaming of what it will be like. Springtime will find us, at long last, digging in the dirt, planting, re-arranging and weeding. Then when summer is upon us, will you notice an air of neglect about your garden? Will your plants get leggy, in need of some pruning? Will there be weeds growing here and there?

What about our lives - those things we longed for, dreamed about and waited so long for - how does your garden grow? That husband or wife you longed for, finally a part of your life. That child you asked the Lord for and finally arrived. That friend . . . that job . . . . Have you left those gardens, untended, full of weeds withering from neglect?

God, from the beginning of time, gave us each gardens to tend. Let’s honor what He has given us by tending them conscientiously - our nearest and dearest relationships, our homes, our jobs, our communities and our places of worship.

You put us in charge of everything you made, giving us authority over all things.
Psalm 8:6

Heavenly Father, please give me eyes to see the gardens You have given me to tend. Please give me wisdom in the care of them. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Monday, November 10, 2008


The training of an ox for farm work is begun at an early age. When still young, a yoke is fitted to the ox’s shoulders and he begins service to his master. As the ox grows, a larger yoke is made and fitted perfectly to his changing stature and his ability to pull increasingly heavy loads.

Our heavenly Father desires to have us in His service, to be co-laborers with Him. He expects us to do what we are able to do. The yoke of service which He places on our shoulders is fitted perfectly to our capabilities. As we are co-workers with Him, He shares the load and gives rest to our souls.

Is your yoke in place? Can God consider you to be a co-laborer with Him in the fields He chooses? I hope so!

Come to Me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me; for I am gentle and lowly in heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. Matthew 11:28

Heavenly Father, thank You for each responsibility You have placed upon my shoulders. I know that each is measured and fitted perfectly according to my capability in You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Sunday, November 9, 2008


Oh, how often we look at someone else’s life and begin to criticize. We begin an internal dialogue with ourselves about how weak . . . bumbling . . . disorganized, inept, or rough . . . the other person is. Suddenly we catch ourselves . . . knowing that prayer is needed, not criticism.

A quick prayer is said. There - we’ve fulfilled our religious obligation. Soon we revert to our original critical ways.

Don’t we realize that the Lord desires to set that person free in the weak areas? God’s desire is to set us free, too - to pray with a pure, loving heart. And, indeed, that truly sets us both free. And that’s Good News!

Whereas the aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and sincere faith. I Timothy 1:5

Heavenly Father, please help me turn my back on criticism toward others and replace it with love from a heart made pure by You. In Jesus’ name. Amen

Saturday, November 8, 2008


Do you know about Letterboxing? I just recently was introduced to it. Here is how it works: Go on-line to the Letterboxing site, find an area in your part of the world where you would like to search for a hidden treasure. Print off the directions which will aid you in your search. Get ready and go.

If you are fortunate, you will find the treasure you search for and you will be so excited.

Usually the treasure you seek is in a weather-proof container with a log book within where you can briefly sign your name and date, proving that you were there. As an added bonus, within the container are treasures for which you can trade. You place an object which belongs to you within the capsule and you may take something as a trade.

This scenario reminds me of our search for God - the true treasure. How do we find this treasure? By seeking Him earnestly. What does God promise if we search for Him?

“If you look for me in earnest, you will find Me when you seek Me. I will be found by you, says the Lord.” Jeremiah 29:13

When we find Him who is the treasure, we also are privileged to make an exchange. I give Him my life, He gives me His life.

Of course,we must continue to seek Him daily no matter if we have once found Him or not. He keeps moving forward. We must continue moving forward with Him.

Heavenly Father, please place within me the desire to earnestly seek You every day of my life. In Jesus’ name. Amen

Friday, November 7, 2008


Have you ever found yourself trying to carry a suitcase which is too heavy? It is so large and cumbersome that you KNOW that it can’t be carried any distance at all before you stumble and everything will come crashing down around you.

Recently I had such a dream - trudging along a dirt road, carrying a heavy suitcase filled with life’s burdens and responsibilities.

Maybe you, too, are trying to carry such a burden - facing chemotherapy, the loss of a loved one(s), a new project at work, papers due for class . . . all of the responsibilities of life on this earth. It seems overwhelming sometimes.

The good news, however, is that there is help from the Mightiest Source of all - God Himself.

First, we can rest assured in the fact that He never, ever expects us to carry that suitcase ourselves.

Second, He Himself offers to carry that suitcase . . . if we only ask for His help and then let Him.

Third, there are many people along the way who will gladly help us, too. Even if they cannot physically walk beside us to help carry the load, they certainly can call upon the Father on our behalf for His help.

Yes, we can leave that entire suitcase at the cross, in our heavenly Father's capable hands.

Let’s recognize the availability of God’s help, let’s call upon Him. Then let’s walk with heads held high as we walk with our Maker. We may even enjoy the view along the way!

May we say with the Psalmist: I am overcome with joy because of Your unfailing love, for You have seen my troubles, and You care about the anguish of my soul. Psalm 31:7

Heavenly Father, please help me this week. The burden is big. I thank You! In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Thursday, November 6, 2008


Some friends were facing a difficult stretch of time ahead. The husband was to have life-saving surgery. His wife and three children would be at his bedside until he was up and about.

Our hearts cried out to God for His help to them. As we prayed, one thought kept returning to me again and again - God had thoroughly prepared them!

Through all of the previous years of seemingly less serious illnesses and injuries in their family, God had been training and teaching them for the role each would now play out for their dear one.

God has prepared us, too, if there is ever a need. We can rest, knowing that. We are ready. . . by His grace.

Blessed be the Lord, my rock, who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle. Psalm 144:1

Heavenly Father, I thank You that nothing can touch me for which You haven’t prepared me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


Our friend’s mother died, leaving a house full of craft supplies. Before their household auction was to take place, my friend grabbed an old, stained pillowcase and stuffed some old sheets into it. She thought we could use them to weave some rugs.

One day after a visit, our friend handed us the pillowcase. It was so old and that we were afraid it would spill its contents in our car so we threw it in the trunk.

Eventually we knew it was time to do something with what was in the pillowcase . . . . To our astonishment, as we peered inside, we noticed something pure and snowy-white all crumpled up. I reached my hand in and gingerly pulled out one . . . then two beautiful, lace-edged old fashioned nightgowns. A lovely square collar with delicate tucks at each wrist were reminiscent of the 1800s.

When we saw our friend again, we gently handed her the treasures - this time neatly folded in a clean box.

We, too, are like that old, stained pillowcase. Inside of us is the greatest treasure of all - God’s Spirit.

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, to show that the transcendent power belongs to God and not to us. II Corinthians 4:7

Heavenly Father, please open my eyes to see how You treasure me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


As parents, we certainly know how imperfect our love can be toward our children. Sometimes we are just plain tired out and become easily irritated at their noise, their squabbling with a sibling or their ‘childish’ behavior (how else can a child act?)

As a spouse, we also know how imperfect our love can be toward our mate. The attributes which so endeared them to us during courtship often, in later years, become far from endearing. In addition, we find ourselves becoming someone we never intended to be - sometimes with nagging words attached.

Or, as a friend, we know how imperfect our love can be - not only toward our friends but in their attitudes and actions toward us.

Face it, love expressed or received on this planet is far from perfect. We are hurt by others and, in turn, we hurt them.

Two words in Scripture pop up again and again, especially in the Psalms - UNFAILING LOVE. That is the love which God offers us - a perfect, never ending love . . . a love which never becomes irritated, never unkind. That kind of love is always sensitive to our needs . . . and our heart-felt wants. That kind of love fulfills our every longing. That love never fails.

Have you experienced God's UNFAILING LOVE? God offers it freely, abundantly, magnificently to us - if we open our hearts to Him.

Your unfailing love, O Lord, is as vast as the heavens; Your faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds. Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, Your justice like the ocean depths. You care for people and animals alike, O Lord. How precious is your unfailing love, O God! All humanity finds shelter in the shadow of Your wings. Psalm 36:5-7

Thank You, heavenly Father, that You love me! Consistently and eternally. In Jesus’ precious name. Amen

Monday, November 3, 2008


One day recently my plan was to make a quick stop at our village post office, loop around to pick up a few items from the grocery store and then head for home.

I pulled into a parking space on the street in front of the post office and quickly ran in to get my mail. Preparing to pull away from the curb, a huge garbage truck pulled up alongside my van and stopped. I was going nowhere. My entire plan was called to a halt.

All of a sudden I could hear yelling. The only recognizable words were, “Help, help!”

As I turned my head toward the commotion, I noticed a little boy and his bicycle underneath a SUV. The boy’s mother was frantically trying to get to him.

Quickly I sprinted into the post office, shakily yelling for them to dial 911, giving needed details. My part in the adventure was minor. Yet I could clearly see that even though I had made a plan for myself, the Lord had directed my steps to be where He wanted me to be at the exact moment of need.

The moral of the story? The next time in our lives a huge garbage truck (or anything else God sends) stops us in our tracks, let’s look around and see what He may have us do. Maybe the purpose is for us is to ‘be’ - still, holy as He is holy, thankful . . . . Whatever the reason, it is of eternal importance.

We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps. Proverbs 16:9

Master Time Keeper, thank You for placing stops along my path. Please help me to see what You have for me at each one. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Are you ambitious? At work, do you strive to earn that promotion . . . stepping on anyone who gets in your way? In your neighborhood, do you work diligently on your yard . . . to show up your neighbor’s laziness? At church, do you give of your time . . . so others will admire your dedication?

As you can see, there is a very selfish, dangerous aspect to ambition. Yes, we are to strive to do well at our jobs . . . to please God, not to step on others. Yes, we are to work diligently . . . to honor God, not to show up other’s faults. Yes, we are to give of ourselves, in obedience to God, not for others to admire us. Our ambition, according to Scripture, is to be pleasing to God. May we walk carefully in this area.

Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own affairs and to work with your hands . . . .
I Thessalonians 4:11

Heavenly Father, I commit any ambition I may have into Your hands. Please purify my motives and my actions so that I may be pleasing to You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Saturday, November 1, 2008


Over the past few years, how many gifts have you sent for weddings, the arrival of new babies, birthdays and graduations? Did you receive a thank you note from each person you remembered? When the receiver of your gift didn’t acknowledge your thoughtfulness, how did you feel?

God, our heavenly Father, sends us gifts each day of our lives. We awake . . . our hearts are still beating . . . we are able to get out of bed . . . there is food to eat . . . . Do we acknowledge His thoughtfulness to us? Do we thank Him? May we meet His gifts with thankful hearts.

I will give to the Lord the thanks due to His righteousness and I will sing praise to the name of the Lord Most High. Psalm 7:17

Heavenly Father, please forgive me for taking Your love for granted so often. I thank You for all that You share with me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.