“Will the mother stand who has eight or more children? The oldest mom…” Our pastor, along with thousands of others around the US, addressed the moms in the congregation. Not a big deal? Maybe not to you….

Thursday before Mother’s Day I attended a program where one of our first-grade grandchildren would be participating. As the little ones–so gorgeously dressed–took turns at the microphone with their tribute to their mother (“I love my mom because…. she gives me cookies; … she reads to me… she plays games with me…), my heart broke for the little ones who were making up things to say. Don’t tell me out of a group of 30 or so kids, all had their moms–I won’t believe you. I couldn’t help wondering how many were living in homes where a step-mom resided, who really didn’t like this child of another woman. For a moment I went back to a time in another century when I was responsible for my children enduring a Mother’s Day program without their mother, because I was too backslidden to be a mom. Gasp only if you have never wandered from the path of righteousness–and oh, by the way, don’t doubt for a second but that I would give my life had I never sinned, for I would–but I did. But where I am today is at the foot of the Cross, with its “Grace, grace, marvelous grace.”

As the program continued, I wondered how many were being raised by Grandma… or in a foster home… or had lost their mom to illness and death.

I couldn’t help but reflect on the moms who were sitting there thinking of a baby lost in the womb. One mom in our church has lost ten–can you even imagine the grief? I can’t. Having lost one, I can’t even begin to sympathize. How does one stand up when the pastor calls a number? What if you’ve lost three, as a good friend has, but hasn’t had a baby yet? Does that make her not a mom?

I even thought of all the women who were sitting in the audience who have had abortions; sure, there are some who go on about their lives and never give the baby a thought–but how many do you know personally? Have they ever told you that it hasn’t hurt them? I’ll believe it when they sit before me.

For now, it’s over. Another year before we have to agonize over whether to stand and count the three that we had that we lost in a custody battle, or the three that we raised afterward. Don’t get me wrong: it’s great to honor moms. But somehow the ones who should be honored may be the ones who raised their children to be loving, hard-working adults, when there was no father in the home; the ones who raised their child to remember a picture of a soldier who gave his life that our country could be free; the ones who celebrate a Mother’s Day because they’ve given up having a career that would have given them financial freedom, instead of a one-income home where food is sometimes pancakes for supper, but everyone is happy and grateful for each other–those and more need to be honored. Not how many times you’ve gotten pregnant, nor how long you’ve lived on this earth.

No, next year won’t change. It will be the same categories in all the same churches, the restaurants will be full, and many moms will not receive a card. But maybe each of us could do something special for at least one mom we know who will be alone with her children, doing her best. That would make two people have a wonderful Mother’s Day: You and Her.

Father, You have called out the best in Mothers, and given us guidelines to have life, and have it abundantly. Forgive us when we stray, when we are impatient, unloving, and place ourselves before those we love. Help us to remember that in serving others, we serve You. Bring this all to our minds next year, so that we can learn from the lessons of yesterdays. Thank You for grace, Lord. We love You.


Do you ever get mixed up on the days? Perhaps you think it’s Wednesday, and it’s Thursday… or you date something with the month that just passed, and you’re suddenly feeling, “Where is time going!”?? It’s not just a senior-moment thing, it’s an every age, busy thing! We cram so much into our days that we’re living 36-hours in twenty-four.

All that to say it seems as though I just wrote, but here it is, almost two weeks! Two weeks, and I have to ask myself, what have I done for my Lord in the past two weeks besides go to church? Has anyone been impacted in a positive way for Christ? How about a negative way? Possibly–although I hate to admit it. Life is going by at the speed of light, and each second that ticks away on the clock behind me is one second I’m closer to eternity. How about you? Does it effect you like that?

I get up and mean to make the day count, but work interferes. Have you found that it stops you from doing a lot of things you’d like to do? But we’re locked into it, and nothing except time or catastrophe will end the work life of most people. And the family–when work is over, you have to spend time with the family, right? That’s a chunk of time. You start cutting the “pie” clock into slices, and see that there isn’t much left when all the priorities are cut. And again we have to ask, what was done for Christ?

Unless you’re in full-time ministry, there’s little time to make an impact on someone’s life. We’ve lived for eleven years in this house; except for taking Christmas cookies one time to the next door neighbors, that’s the extent of our knowledge of them. They never pull out of their driveways for church, so that probably means they are unbelievers, or at the least, back-slidden. I’ll probably have to answer for that in Heaven, and I doubt “busy-ness” will be an excuse.

What’s the remedy? I don’t know. We all are caught up in our job, whether it’s 40 or 60 hours a week (mine is 60), trying to run a home, interact with the family–whether they are still at home or living nearby with grandchildren–and do the errands that all that entails. Is there an answer? Are we in such a fast-paced world that time has gotten completely away from us? Perhaps. But there is an urgency in the air now, one that says we can’t keep on with such an ungodly society, with such withdrawl from those we don’t know that we are not even a testimony to those around us. Why would my neighbors think I care about them, when I don’t even make time for them?

Not much encouragement here, is there? But if you are breathing, it’s not too late! We can start, and that start can begin NOW. I’m not sure how–just a note that takes 5 minutes to tell someone “thank you,” “I’m sorry,” or encourage them in some way.

God’s mercies are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22,23), and we have a fresh start–let’s use it today to make a difference!



This poor tree, with a tiny one in its shadow! What an analogy to the modern day Christian! The strong one doesn’t blend in with all the other trees in the background, but somehow–whether by intention or reaction–it became a loner from the group, with only one weak follower, and was outsted from the others! Not only is it by itself (except for that weak little one that it is shielding), but as you can see, all the other trees are dressed in gorgeous colors, while our poor Christian tree looks rather plain, having lost all its beauty! There isn’t much room for hope, is there? It is stuck where it is, and only time will renew its strength and the fruit of leaves!

Do you ever feel like that? I doubt you’re a teenager reading this, who is trying to walk with Christ in school, but you may have one, and they can probably relate very well; or possibly even a college student in a Philosophy class, as in the now-popular movie that has made a Christian into a hero rather than shown as a ridiculed moron! But adults can relate as well! How? Well, walk into a class at the church, where all the faces are unfamiliar, and you feel like you are standing on stage, with everyone looking at you! Walk into a Bible Study, where everyone seems to know each other, and you wait, as you look for a table where someone not only meets your eye, but smiles a welcome. Standing alone makes you feel everyone is looking at you, judging you! Sit in the waiting room with a dozen others, while the appointment time gets more and more behind: this happened recently and everyone was cursing loudly enough for the secretary to hear and understand their anger at losing time; I finally spoke up, “Now isn’t the time to say I only read Christian fiction, is it?” The room got quiet, the cursing stopped, but I felt like the tree!

Standing alone is what God means when He says that we are to be “set apart” from the world. We are to dress modestly in a world where the females dress to attract the most attention; keep our language clean in environments where the females as well as the males no longer have any embarrassment about using profanity. When I was growing up, no gentleman would curse in front of a woman . . .  we could go on and on. God’s idea of a living sacrifice is to give up the things that are not good for your spiritual walk, and put your hand in His. Are you willing to do that? Are you willing to stand alone? It takes courage. It takes strength. It takes the Holy Spirit standing alongside you!

This week, be alert to situations where you can stand alone and shine for Christ! Pray He gives you opportunity to not be ashamed of Him in public!

Father, thank You for giving us salvation! It was a gift that cost You everything, and we often treat it so lightly. Forgive us, Lord, and let us take our “lights” from under our baskets this week, so that the world can see that we glow for You! Amen


The beautiful yellow pillow was perfectly centered in front of the shams on the bed. The entire set had a gorgeous vintage look, and some bold accessories were going to make a lovely bedroom! As I, as seller, was packing the set for mailing to a buyer, I picked up the pillow to put it into plastic. Suddenly it toppled backward–one of those “wish I could undo it” moments, because it landed right on the butter dish, sitting on the dining room table! (Yes, I spent hours whipping myself that I had not moved the butter!)

I grabbed everything I could find in the next hour, trying to get the stain out; I “googled”; I prayed; I worked, used elbow grease, and every suggestion that anyone made! Finally, after it had had time to set for a day or so, it was about 98% perfect.

We’re so like that!! We go where we shouldn’t, or pass something we shouldn’t, and all of a sudden a worldly stain gets on us! Nothing the world can do will take it away–only by repentance, crying out to the Savior, will we be cleansed from anything unrighteous (1 John 1:9).

James tells us “for this is pure and undefiled religion in the sight of God and man: to visit the widows and orphans in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the sins of the world!” (James 1:27, loosely quoted). And Ezra, many years before, had said the “children of Israel who had returned from the captivity ate together with all who had separated themselves from the filth of the nations of the land in order to seek the Lord God of Israel.”

A holy life is the desire of God’s heart for believers who are living in the world! Have you prayed today that your hours would be filled with His will, and that His protection would keep your life from getting stained today? If you haven’t yet, it’s not too late!

I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And that which I can do, by the grace of God, I will do. Dwight L. Moody

Please forgive me as I take a break from the blog while finishing book 2, “RECEIVING LOVE NOTES FROM GOD: HEARTWARMING STORIES OF LOVE SENT FROM THE HEART OF GOD.” This is coming out in the fall of 2013. Meanwhile, if you have a question or comment, please let me know! You may send it to  Thank you!


Recently I’ve been part of a Bible Study which has centered on the children of Israel being led out of Egypt into the wilderness on their way to the “Promised Land.”¹  This study has been remarkable to all of us who have been attending, as we’ve all been able to identify the wildernesses we have been in, are in, or getting ready to go into!  Yet in every case, God has not only allowed the experience, but has, in most cases, led us into them.  It’s hard to wrap your mind around that!  And it hit me–Jesus began His ministry being LED by the Holy Spirit into the wilderness!  Think of it, God the Father allowing God the Holy Spirit to LEAD God the Son into a wilderness to test Him!  And we complain?

As we have studied, it is easy to look back upon our own wilderness experiences of past times and identify the cause:  wrong choices which caused us to get off a narrow road we were on and follow a  small path that ended up in a wilderness; one of our “weights that doth so easily beset us” that caused us to need to go into a wilderness and be tested there, and many other reasons!  As we go through our own wilderness, are we seeing it as a time for grumbling and complaining–as the Israelites–or are we seeing it as a necessary test that God has to put us through in order to see that He has been working on our lives to produce in us someone who resembles Christ?  Doesn’t Christian mean “little Christs”?  We tend to criticize the Israelites: God had just put them between a rock and a hard place: the Red Sea on one side, and the army of Pharoh on the other, then miraculously opened the sea to let them pass through–yet very quickly they are screaming because they need water! Why didn’t they say, “WOW! God just opened the sea to let us walk over, why not ask Him in humility for water to drink?”  But no, they threw a tantrum.  He (in spite of their attitude) supplied sweet water from a rock.  A month later they are screaming for food!  What happened to the sea and the rock experience?  

A dear friend is in a wilderness–and has been for some time–and questioned every facet of it with “Why?”  But now, as the time is passing, she is learning to be content in her circumstances!  Not because they’ve become comfortable–they have not–but because she has grown in faith to look back at the faithfulness of God and see that He has her in this wilderness in order to bring her to a new level of faith.  Now that that is happening, I expect her to be coming out of that wilderness because God’s will is being accomplished!

Another dear friend has been tested by God for several years: yet I have seen an enormous change in the past year.  I have seen someone who was being faithful with big things suddenly lose those, and led to a wilderness.  In that journey, they were brought to the bottom.  Then God opened something “small.”  Instead of being arrogant and turning the small thing down, they took on the “small” and have been faithful with it.  Now it looks as though God is starting to work on the “vessel” He has been honing, and holding the potential for bigger things in His hand, with His arm outstretched!

What about you?  Are you in a wilderness during this time in your life, and kicking and screaming, or are you looking back at the years when God has faithfully brought you through other agonizing times?  If He was faithful in those, will He not be faithful in this?  Or are you in this wilderness because something in your life has to be removed so that God can be given the glory for you having a new life in Him?  James tells us that even if we are unfaithful, it will not result in God, also, becoming unfaithful, but on the contrary, He will still remain steadfast!

Search your heart and see if you can identify why you may be in a wilderness, then give it to God–completely!  Then, be content and full of expectation that He who has been faithful in the past still has you in the palm of His hand, and will work all things out for good!  He is holy, and calls us to be holy!

Father, God, how we love you!  And admittedly we don’t love the wildernesses in our lives, but as we look back, we can see You at work in our lives, refining the dross so that we can be presented to You as a glorious vessel!  Reveal those areas in our lives where we need change, and give us the courage to lay aside any weights that are causing us not to run our race with endurance!  We give You honor, glory and praise! Amen

¹Priscilla Shirer, “One In a Million” Lifeway, 2010

Sixteen year ol…

Sixteen year olds are pretty special people!  My granddaughter is required to read the life of Henry David Thoreau this summer, and expressed her distaste for his lifestyle of living in the woods, alone with nature; she added, “I couldn’t do that–I need people around me!”  I thought of the years I desired to live a ‘hermit’s’ life but the truth is, I can’t go a day–or more than two at the most–without talking to some of my children!  And those that I can’t talk with often are always carried in my heart, thinking of them and longing to hear their voice.

Isn’t that the way it should be with our God?  We should be in such close relationship with Him that if we miss talking to Him, reading His love letters to us (His Word), or communing in some way with Him during a day, we feel a big void in our lives!  Yet He is there, being faithful, even when we get so busy that we don’t stop for that moment!  Are you His child?  If so, He probably dropped you a note today: was it through the voice of a loved friend, a smile from someone, a blessing you didn’t expect?  I had a call from a beloved cousin–which happens very rarely–who is a pastor and whose opinions I value highly.  God allowed us to chat and encourage one another for a short time, but what a blessing!  We both took something special with us as we hung up, knowing the struggles and dreams we each hold dear were important to the other!  That was a touch of God.  Look around–try to see yourself with the eyes of God, and think back over your day: was there a blessing in it that was unexpected?  That was a Love Note from God!  You can’t think of something?  You awoke this morning, you breathed, and you’re alive.  God isn’t finished with you yet, so draw near to Him and experience His times of refreshing!

Dear Father, I pray for those who may come to this blog; may they leave the world behind for a moment and find rest in You!  I pray for them, that their eyes would be open to everything You have created for us to enjoy, and for the blessings You pour out on us.  Let Your grace amaze them, Lord! In Christ, Amen

Romans 8:5:  But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for the us.

Hello World!

Welcome to! Thank you so much for taking time to visit!  This blog is to encourage, edify, and strengthen believers in their daily walk with Christ–which is not an easy walk!  Let me know how you’re doing, and how I can help point you to the Savior who gives “peace that passes understanding!”