A Strong Tower

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We can’t put our trust in people, we can’t put our trust in our circumstances, there has to be something stronger, more stable, constant & perfect.

His name is Jesus & He is mighty to save. To redeem, restore & heal.

HE is a safe place. This world is not but He is.

Bad things happen in this world- it’s fallen, we are fallen, no one is immune. But God is faithful loving & kind. Do we really trust & know this when we see so much bad happening or even when we remember this day so many years ago?

Can we praise Him amidst our many storms & sorrows in this life? Can we be real with Him & let Him know how hurt, disappointed & sad we are at people and circumstances?

He allowed this day 18 years ago to happen. And it makes me shake my head, wide eyed, wanting to step away from Him because that was so bad & yet He allowed it? But the gospel & God’s goodness and grace go against our human sinful nature & eyes that only see bad.

We can choose to walk with Him when He allows bad things to happen or we can choose to distance ourselves from the only one who truly knows us & can heal us from the pain of this world.

We are not safe in this world, we are safer because of Him but this safety doesn’t always reveal itself as protection from trauma & death. This safety reveals itself as a Heavenly Father who knows, loves & wants His children to turn & follow Him. To grow “better from hard things & not bitter” (Lisa harper).

We can not know why, His ways are higher; we can shake our heads & question Him, & ultimately run to Him as the only strong tower worthy of our trust.

He is good, y’all.

He is faithful.

This place is not a believers home.

He is hope, healing & freedom. Here or in heaven.

He is sovereign & can work all things together for good, for a greater purpose.

We have to know His truths as this world, people & circumstance beat us down or cause us to question His love for His people.

Know there is more to come, HE is to come. No matter what’s next HE is there & He loves us.

Look at the bad & recite, memorize, meditate on these truths. Know His Word, get into it. Read Job (talk about brutal circumstances!).

Know Him, love Him, run to Him.

In Jesus name amen.

Frizzy Hair and the Refining Process

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God allows various trials in our lives, various fires. It’s the refining process, with the heat molding us, shaping us and smoothing us out, just as a curling iron does to our hair. Our refining by the fire has the opportunity to bring growth, more knowledge of Him, more desperation for Him while transforming our hearts to be more like Him.

Eyes on Him, we will be refined for His glory.

This would be an easy/fun activity to show to your children, too!

(Ps! Sorry for my sweet little distractions 😂 I tried to re-record and it just didn’t happen 🤷🏻‍♀️)

Don’t. Be. Afraid.

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His desk is the one closest to the door of the classroom. I noticed it right away at the teacher meet and greet. The scenario of a gunman entering the room filled my thoughts as I visualized where the shots would most likely be fired first.

A lump welled up in my throat and a shot anxiety passed through my body. I took a deep breath and reigned myself in, for the most part.

————–

I know these thoughts are irrational but it’s a fear I see played out in my head as my children happily choose or are assigned their seat at the beginning of a school year.

I’ve not thought about it much since school has started but in light of the recent rumor of a school shooting the lump and anxiety are back.

I think of how my parents never had to think of things like this, how schools were just open…so different than the way things are today.

So what are we to do?

I know my children’s school is safe but I also know evil is lurking everywhere. We could all just stay home all the time in a bubble, Amazon everything and stay safe, right?

But what good is it to live in fear???

Do not be afraid. The Bible tells us over and over and over.

Jesus is with my children in their classroom. Jesus is in their school. Worrying will only cause me grief and no quality of life so I must pray and trust. And when I worry I pray and trust some more.

Be anxious for nothing. But in everything with prayer and supplication make your requests known to God. Philippians 4:6

I must take every fearful thought captive to my Jesus. I trust that He is good and just. He is righteous and can save. I know that this world is not our home.

And the peace of God which surpasses all will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7

The minute the fear creeps in I must replace it with truth. His word tell me His peace will guard my heart and mind– goodness, how I need this peace!!

When guards are set up, they keep bad things out, right? So this peace from God will come when I Philippians 4:6, when I PRAY. And when I “be anxious for nothing”. Agh I can’t do that one without praying. My own strength can only do so much at getting rid of anxiety, I need Christ and His words to truly combat it.

Such a war we live in– in the world but also in our minds and hearts. But we are not alone- we have the Spirit of God to help us, to guide us and to equip us.

No matter what.

To the schools who hold our precious babies for 35 hours a week, please be vigilant. In prayer and protection. To the moms, dads, grandparents and teachers – pray like crazy. But trust like crazy too. We must teach our children to pray as well, and to not be afraid. Why? Because God is with them (us), He loves them (us), and He is good.

“I will not be afraid because the Lord is with me. People can’t do anything to me.”

‭‭Psalms‬ ‭118:6‬

Dear Lord-

Just no. No. Please, Lord. You see all and know all. Please stop this evil. I beg of you. Please help us to pray and give you every ounce of anxiety and fear. Help us to not. Be. Afraid. Help us to teach our children who you are so they won’t fear. Guard our hearts and our minds please. Stop any evil plans, let it all be a hoax and just an opportunity to turn to You, children in hand and walk with Your peace surpassing all. Help us to trust You and know You are good even in the bad and You do not change. In Jesus saving name, amen.

Alright, people. Let’s pray and trust and go about our day with the strength and peace of the Lord. May our children see the difference in us today and be transformed as well.

When We Don’t Know Why, God is in the Why

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In less than a year, our community has lost two precious women I had the privilege of knowing. They both loved the Lord and lived for Him, teaching others His Word and shining brightly for Him. They leave behind husbands and children…and it all seems so unfair.

I find myself asking God a lot of questions– “Why?” “Why someone who loves You and follows You?” “Women who teach Your Word?” “Why someone so young?” “Why, Lord?” “Why these women, these moms still raising children?”

I know we are supposed to ask “What now?” rather than “Why?” But for today, I cannot stop the why. And that’s ok because God is in the why. It’s in our questions and our desperation that we seek Him and if we seek Him we will find Him.

I feel that when I doubt God’s plan or His ways I am disregarding all the truths I know to be true about Him, but as long as I find myself back at His truth’s, its’ OK to ask questions, right? Surely His grace still overflows when our hearts are breaking in the unfairness of life and the why’s that may never be answered.

As I wrestle with why, these truths stand out to me the most:

  • God is good even when life isn’t
  • He is always there with His people and to help His people
  • He can redeem hard situations
  • To these women, to live was Christ and to die was gain
  • Even in death and tragedy, others can be saved (hello, Jesus!- the cross!) or brought closer to Him
  • This place is not our home
  • We will be reunited again one day

We just don’t want these people gone from us, do we? We want them here to continue to do God’s work, don’t we?

Then I’m reminded that our work on earth is never done; even when we die, what’s done for Christ will last and these ladies certainly did a lot for Christ. A lot of eternal work. The impact they had on their families, friends, church, and community will live on forever.

“Only one life, ’twill soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last.” C.T. Studd

God is always working for those who love him as I know these women and their families do. We must hold on to that truth and fill it in our minds when we wrestle with the “whys” of this world.

“God causes all things to work together for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28

To my town as we mourn…let’s turn to Jesus and seek His face as I’m sure these women, if still with us, would be so honored and happy if we would all do just that. And please pray- when the only thing you can do is pray, you pray.

In Jesus Mighty name, AMEN.

Verses to cling to from God’s Word, the Book both of these women stood on:

  • “My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts. My ways are far beyond anything we could imagine.” Isaiah 55:8-9
  • “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” Proverbs 3:5
  • “O Israel, hope in the Lord; for with the Lord there is lovingkindness, and with Him is abundant redemption.” Psalms 130:7
  • “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalms 34:18
  • “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10

There are a million more I could post, but I encourage us all to get into His Word for ourselves and let the truths of who He is comfort and guide us.

For Wendy and Kristie ♥️

To the Anderson and Stokes families…you all are loved and prayed for by so many people who grieve with you. Praying you see, feel and know that the Lord is near.

 

G O A L

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When I was about 11, I played on a basketball league. We were the Rockets and my dad was the coach. Unfortunately, I was no good ~ one time I was put in the game and the ball was thrown to me. It was my chance to contribute to the team, I finally had the opportunity to make a basket. I turned towards the goal, jumped up…but the ball never left my hands.

Oops.

“Walking!” The referee yelled.

My one chance and I blew it. I was so embarrassed at the time but now it’s a funny story I like to tell my children. How I had the chance to make a goal and just couldn’t let go of the ball. I let my fear and nervousness get the best of me.

As Christians our ultimate goal is Christ, Heaven, Him; and I’m so grateful for the grace in the walking of this Christian life (pun intended! Ha!). Grateful for do-overs and second chances!

However, if we turn to the goal, jump to shoot and don’t let go, we won’t make the goal Christ has for us. We must let go of the ball. Give it to Him. Whatever our “ball” may be, give it to Him.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us…” Hebrews‬ ‭12:1‬

Some days this daily letting go – surrendering – to make the goal is really hard and other days it’s might be easier.

Do your nerves get the best of you? Me too. Does what others think matter a little too much? Yup.

This little scenario from my childhood reminds me to get the ball, turn to the goal, let go and let God.

“I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which god has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:14

“So we make it our goal to please Him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it.” 2 Corinthians 5:9

W O R L D ~ Five Minute Friday

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God created the world and everything in it;

But how often we look to this world to fulfill us.

To fill this hole inside our souls

An aching to belong and to be known.

When we already are so known, so loved by our Creator.

How often we miss it because this world distracts.

It vies for our attention but leaves us in lack.

Of the goodness and grace of the Father above

Of forgiveness and kindness, gentleness and love.

This world is a world in which sin gets its way

It destroys and deceives and ruins our stay.

But hope has a name, it’s Jesus Christ

None can compare. None can compete.

With the healing, freedom and wholeness He brings

to His children, surrendered, fallen on our knees.

Giving it up to Him this place in our souls

Granting the Maker complete control

One with the world or one with God?

It’s one or the other- which way do we fall?

Q U E S T I O N ~ Five Minute Friday Writing Prompt and Blog Link Up

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“Question” is the writing prompt for today from the Five Minute Friday writing prompt. The following is what came to my mind and heart ♥️

“W I L L Y O U ?”

Will you follow Me today, my child? Will you?

Will you take My hand and let Me be your guide?

Will you let Me lead the way and open your heart to all I have to say?

Will you?

Will you rest in Me and My love for you? Will you look to Me to make you new?

Will you?

Will you shine like a star in the nighttime sky?

And spread My love as the day goes by?

Will you?

Will you know of the grace in each step you make?

Whether tethered to Me or making a mistake?

Will you?

Will you die to yourself so you can really live?

For in your place, My Son did I give.

Will you walk today in light of the cross? With eyes on Jesus, there is no loss.

A question for today, My dear child I love you so…

will you stay with Me or will you go?

On your own way, doing as you please?

With temporary pleasures this world tries to appease.

To temp you with things too small to make you whole,

to fill you with distractions that is the enemy’s goal.

Will you know that in Me you will truly be free?

I will open your eyes and you will really see.

Will you let Me reign in your life and soul?

Will you abide in Me so I can make you whole?

I will show you the way and help you live. This side of heaven My Holy Spirit I give.

Walk with Me, take My hand.

I will lead you to the promised land.

I’ll be with you every step of the way and always remember to take time to pray.

You have My Word to hear Me speak, get in it daily and you won’t be weak.

Worship Me and show others the way,

Will you follow Me today?