OPEN

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My word for 2018 is OPEN. I want to be open to God. To whatever He has for me. Whatever He wants me to do and be.

I want to be open to my husband. Open arms, open heart, not holding back.

I want to be open to my family and friends. Available for what they need.

I want to be open to people I meet along the way. Strangers. I want to let them see me. See the light in me.

Open my heart Lord. To love and care.

Open my eyes to see those around me.

To see into their hearts. To look into their eyes.

Open my ears not just to hear but to listen intently.

Open my soul to let your light shine. To be transparent.

Open my wallet that I will be generous.

Open my hands so that I’m willing to give where you want me to give.

Please Father, help me do my part. Help me be willing to hear and obey. To trust you whatever you ask of me.

Please fill me with your Holy Spirit.

“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16

 

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Filed under Listening to God, personal

A Beautiful and Inspiring Love Story

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I’m a huge fan of Robin Lee Hatcher!  Her new book launches on Monday and I had the privilege to read it early. Please don’t miss it!

I was hooked from the first chapter of You’re Gonna Love Me. I couldn’t put it down. An enjoyable romance yet I also learned truth about overcoming fear with faith. I loved the characters and the story. #YoureGonnaLoveMe #RobinLeeHatcher

Purchase HERE

 

 

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Filed under Book Reviews, Faith, fear, forgiveness

One Last Tear

countryside-1850111_no-more-tears1280My mom passed away one year ago today. This is what I wrote in response. I love you Mom! I will see you again one day.

 

via One Last Tear

 

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Filed under death, personal

Beauty Rises From the Ashes

I knew this incredible young woman when she was a teenager. I was aware she was suffering and seeking help but I never knew the full extent of her suffering. What a joy to see her come to a place of healing. Please read this e-book she wrote sharing some of the steps in her journey to find peace.

Also check out Emily’s blog.

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Filed under depression, Grace, inspirational, Listening to God, spiritual growth, suffering, women

Will I Choose Silence?

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Do you ever feel inadequate? Maybe you don’t use your gifts because you think they aren’t good enough.

I often feel inadequate as a voice speaking out. I look back on previous devotions and see I need my own advice! It’s frustrating. Part of me thinks I need to be more “spiritual” or “victorious” to share a message with others. But, I suspect readers relate more to my struggles than to my victories. No one has it all together and shouldn’t give the impression they do. However, this struggle doesn’t go away.

Recently, I was doing my daily  SOAP  reading and this verse stood out:

“For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” Esther 4:14

Queen Esther had the opportunity to speak up for her people and possibly save them from destruction, but she was afraid. There was a good chance she would die if she approached the king without being summoned. Her uncle Mordecai gave her the advice in verse 14, telling her if she kept silent, God would bring deliverance from another place.

The truth of that verse hit me. “If you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise…from another place.” I realized I can stay silent, but if I do, God will use someone else to share His message. I’m the one who misses out if I don’t share. God will find a messenger. He will accomplish His purposes on earth. For Him to ask me is a privilege: not a right. If I deny that privilege, I lose it. I want Him to use others but I don’t want to miss out on that opportunity! If I keep silent and don’t share through writing, I’ll miss the blessing of experiencing God working through me. I’ll miss the encouragement that comes from others. I don’t want to treat lightly the grace He is giving me by offering opportunities to share His truth. I can’t take that for granted. Opportunities come from Him. I’m not entitled to the privilege of sharing through writing.

Yes, I need to seek Him, live for Him, and know the truth of His Word: otherwise, what I have to share will grow thin. Living for myself doesn’t produce fruit. But, the fact that I stumble and fall and struggle with my flesh doesn’t disqualify me from the race. I’m humbled and awed that He would still give me opportunities and still use me to encourage others. I don’t deserve that privilege. It’s all grace.

What are your gifts?

How is God using you?

If you struggle at times with feeling unworthy to use those gifts, remember if you stay silent, if you put your gifts aside, God will send someone else, use someone else and you will be left without the blessing that comes from serving Him. He wants to use all His children. He wants all believers to operate in the body as one.

We are all important and together we fulfill His purpose on earth.

I don’t want to miss out on experiencing Him working through me.

Father, thank you for the grace you give me every moment, every day. It’s amazing grace that I can even come to you in prayer. Thank you for the opportunities you give me to serve, to share, to write, and to give. Help me to take each one. Open my eyes to see when and where to speak and what to say. Open my ears to hear your call. Please work through me and let your will be done not mine. May all glory always go to you.

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Filed under Bible Study, Obedience, personal, SOAP

God’s Beautiful Creation

God’s beautiful creation astounds me.

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Filed under beauty, Butterflies, creation

Love Everyone?

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Anyone who says they hate in the name of Jesus is deceived.

Jesus said, “Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.” James 6:27-28

Does that mean love the white supremacist? Yes. Does that mean love ISIS members? Yes. Love Donald Trump? Yes. Love Hilary Clinton? Yes. Love Democrats? Yes. Love Republicans? Yes. Love all races? Yes. Love those you disagree with? Yes. A follower of Jesus is called to love ALL in His name.

That doesn’t mean we agree with all. It doesn’t mean we believe the same way. It doesn’t even mean we never stand up for what we believe or that we never fight evil.

Having hate in our hearts is something else.

Hate destroys the one it abides in.

Jesus goes on to say in Luke 6:35-36, “But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.”

We all were enemies of God but He loved us anyway and sent Jesus to die for us. He shows us mercy every day. We are to pray for those who are caught up in hate and evil. We are to pray for our leaders. Having hate in our hearts won’t change anyone except to change us into bitter, angry people.

We can’t do it in our own strength but Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to help us. With His power in us, we can love all, even our enemies.

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Filed under anger, Christianity, love, relationships