Saturday, December 29, 2012

Joseph, A Story of Hope

 I have favorite stories in the Bible; true events meant to whisper the message of God’s love into our lives. One of my favorites is Joseph’s story. I never tire of the intrigue; it would make a great blockbuster movie. What is it about this best loved, spoiled son of Jacob the keeps me coming back to its pages? His life is filled with hope. No matter what happens, God is with Him. No matter what befalls him, the Lord brings him into favor with the one in charge. Every seeming blunder is a building block to purpose—God’s purpose. 

After many terrible events, Joseph, because of interpreting Pharoah’s dream is placed in power and holds the key to Egypt’s granary. A severe famine has struck Egypt and surrounding countries and Jacob (Joseph’s father) sends his sons to buy grain from Egypt before they die of hunger. Jacob doesn’t allow Benjamin, his younger son of Rachel to go, after all he has already lost one son—Benjamin’s older brother, Joseph. 

Joseph’s brothers set out for Egypt and through a turn of events are in the presence of their long lost brother whom they sold into slavery. Of course, they don’t recognize him in his Egyptian garb. Joseph sends them back with strict instructions to bring Benjamin—to prove they were not spies. Joseph shakes things up a little with his probing questions and mistrustful words.  The brothers still don’t know it is Joseph they are bowing down to; but Joseph’s dream from many years ago is coming true right before his eyes.  

Joseph holds Simeon as ransom while the others agree to bring Benjamin along on their next trip. The odds of being spies as Joseph charged are stacked against the sons of Jacob when Joseph has the grain money hidden in each of their grain sacks, discovered at their first stop to lodge for the night. 

When it comes time to return to Egypt for more grain, they know they must bring Benjamin. Jacob isn’t happy about it but they know they won’t get any more grain, or their big brother, Simeon back without Benjamin’s presence. Big brother, Judah vows to protect Benjamin no matter what happens. And, even says that he will be a surety for his brother’s safety.  

Then it struck me; Jesus comes from the line of Judah. Judah promised safety and protection to his brother, Benjamin, putting his own life on the line. Jesus promises to be our surety. He offered Himself as our substitution; His life for ours. This is one more layer of hope in the story of Joseph. 

I knew I loved this story! As I look ahead to the new year, because of Joseph, I can be sure of a couple of things: Jesus is watching out for me and all things that happen in my life will be for God’s bigger purpose. 

What glimpses of hope have you received through God’s love letter? What story do you love?

Looking forward to spending time with you in 2013,

Read Joseph's story in Genesis 37- 45


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Come, Let Us Adore Him

December can either be a dread or a delight, depending on how my lens is focused. The dread comes when I overextend, baking to rival Martha Stewart, decorations to outdo House Beautiful and date nights with Mr. Clean. No one will remember my clean floor. A cookie is a cookie is a cookie. And, whether I choose all white lights or twinkly multis, the tree will be festive no matter what I decide.

Delight happens when I focus more on the reason for the season—taking time to ponder. As I spend time reading the Angel’s pronouncements, Joseph’s dream and the Bethlehem journey, my delight grows. What was like to have lived then? How would I have reacted to the angel’s visit? Each character in the account we read, met the Savior in a special way.

Imagine, meeting the Savior of the world in the flesh—though He has always been, since the beginning, He was came to the world in the flesh as a baby. In the midst of the crazy days of December, we can enjoy the journey and delight in the story. When we do, our joy will show—joy to the world. The Lord has come.

I look forward to our family being all together. It doesn’t happen often; our children all live out of state. So to have time together is a special gift and a delight.

May your days be merry, bringing joy and delight to you and your family,


Friday, December 14, 2012

Violence Reveals a Darkened Heart - School Shooting in Newtown, CT

Our country is in shock from an act of violence in an elementary school in Newtown, CT. We don’t even have all of the information yet, but it is enough to sicken us to know that children became a bullet’s target. What a senseless act of aggression on those who cannot defend themselves. This shooting was a result of anger; the news reports say the young man had an argument with the school office staff this morning. Without any confirmation of motive the only response I have is to pray for the victims, and families in Newtown who were violated. Their world was rocked to the core as a result of darkened heart.
For anyone that thinks that humanity is getting better, I beg to differ. The heart of mankind in history is dark and full of violence, greed, anger, jealousy, and other roots that dig deep. A darkened heart is filled with skewed thoughts that lead to ugly deeds. Violence is older than Cain and Abel. The weapons may change but the heart is the same. And until we stop making excuses for the heart of mankind, we will cast blame where it doesn’t belong.
The only hope for dark hearts of stone is Jesus Christ who replaces a heart of stone with a heart of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26). A heart of flesh is filled with both love of God and love of mankind, giving thoughts to help, to build up and to share love and kindness. Jesus is the one who transforms us into new creations (2 Corinthians 5:17) and give us the desire to live rightly and love freely. We then begin to see the world through His eyes and desire to make our actions count, to make a positive difference. Only He can remove the anger, greed, jealousy and other roots that spring forth in the darkness. The Light of the World (John 8:12) came to cast out darkness and draw people into His light.
Instead of hate, Jesus sows love. Instead of strife, He brings peace. And in the midst of our darkness, He illumines us with the light of truth. We then see ourselves as He sees us—weak, sinful and needing a Savior. He forgives the dark heart. He redeems the sinful soul and offers a new way of living life and hope for each day.
My heart goes out to the families in Newtown, CT. Please know that I am praying for you. In the midst of this senseless day, may God send His comfort through those around you. Because of this angry outburst, lives will be affected forever. God have mercy on us all.

Share your thoughts with the people of Newtown....


Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Pondering the Nativity

I unpacked my nativity scene to display for Christmas; what appeared to be an idyllic scene as I placed the painted figures in the humble dwelling must have been a great inconvenience for Mary and Joseph. The stillness and serene faces hide the fact that Mary and Joseph traveled for about eighty miles to Bethlehem because of the decree for a census. Joseph had searched high a low for an inn to provide Mary a place to give birth. The bustling Bethlehem overflowed with travelers and the ‘No Vacancy’ signs ruled that night. Instead they took shelter, if you can call it that, in a stable.

The sanitized crèche seen on Christmas cards hides the evidence of barnyard smells and prickly hay. Joseph probably cleared a spot and put fresh hay down for Mary. He scooted the cow and the lambs out of the way and borrowed a feeding trough to lay the newborn baby. It wasn’t what they had planned for their birthing location, but by divine direction shepherds who had been in the starlit field found the infant, Jesus lying in a manger just as the angels had said.

I wonder what the young family was thinking about as they were jostled and tossed about, unable to find a resting place. Did they get stressed? Were they cranky? Did Mary and Joseph have words with each other in the heat of the situation?

We often forget that these were real people and trying situations. Instead of seeing them through human eyes, we set them up as some super saints who dressed up for a role and played it to perfection. But, the smelly stable was an obstacle; one that I would have felt cranky about.

So, as I ponder the holy family and all they endured, I am encouraged because of their faith and strength in the midst of some not so perfect circumstances. They knew that their son, Jesus was God’s son and they were coming to grips with angel’s proclamations. Yet mingled with the amazing truth they needed to face some uncomfortable realities. Scripture says that Mary pondered all the things that were said. She heard the shepherds tell about the angels in the field. By God’s grace, Mary and Joseph fulfilled God’s plan even when things didn’t look anything like they imagined.

 In any situation we encounter, we are the ones chosen to roll with the punches and give grace to those around us. God is at work in you and in me to bring about His purposes in us and through us. We may need to endure some smelly surroundings sometimes, but we can trust just like Mary and Joseph did on the night of Jesus’ birth. God is at work and is bringing some amazing things to pass in our generation. It may not be what we imagine but we can trust Him to work it out as we live life and face its less than perfect circumstances.

The coming of Jesus the Messiah was expected, but no one imagined Him being born among the smelly stable animals. For this reason, some overlooked Him. This nativity lesson to me is to expect the unexpected. Don’t miss what God is doing around you because it doesn’t look like what you have planned.

How is God at work around you today? How is it different than you imagined?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

With Thanksgiving

It's just two days before we celebrate Thanksgiving Day here in the United States. I am looking forward to spending time with family. Tomorrow I will begin my preparations to contribute to the family table. Here in New England we ere toward the traditional fixings. How about you? Do you have a favorite dish to share?

To give an update, my broken foot is recovering nicely. I am able to drive. I still have a few restrictions but the trend is positive and I am noting daily improvements. I am still not able to walk or do much for physical activity (weight bearing) but I have modified some of my strength training exercises so I can do something to ward off the results of my inactivity.

I am participating in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) so I am being steadfast in writing at least 1667 words a day--to meet the goal of 50,000 words by November 30th. It's been a good discipline and I hope to have the beginnings of a book by the time I finish. I say this because it somewhat explains my quietness here on my blog.  :)

Thank you for being faithful friends of The Stream's Edge. I count you as one of my many blessings. I wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving Day. We have much to be thankful for!

What are you thankful for today?

With a grateful heart,


Saturday, November 10, 2012

New Sheets - Thirty Days to Refine You...

I'd like to introduce you to a friend of mine; Cindy Sproles has a new book release and I've invited her to share a little about it with us. It's available on Amazon by clicking the link below.
Cindy, tell us about your new book and how it came about...

New Sheets is a thirty-day devotional/inspirational book. In the beginning the title was longer (if you can believe that). It was Thirty Years in Thirty Days to Refine You into the Woman You Can Be. The reason…well, it took thirty years for God to refine me into the woman I knew I could be. And by the way, I’m still being refined.
When I went through a divorce and moved back to my home, I came back with more than I left. I returned to Tennessee with two boys under the age of three and a broken heart. It took years to look through the rough times and find the good. But I came at it with the mindset, “God has a plan. I’m gonna learn.”
New Sheets were the flames of the fire I walked through. It was the defining and refining moments when God taught me.
I hope New Sheets will be one of those books women lay next to their bed and refer back to through their lives. If one woman can step over my broken rung because of the book, then it’s done its job.
Who says you can’t teach old dogs new tricks? I’m still learning.
I’m excited about New Sheets. It was a project I’d thought of years ago. Every time I picked up a pen to write it, I found I wasn’t “seasoned enough.” By that I mean, aged enough. (Oh boy, that sounds like a cheese). Let me try again…I hadn’t matured enough…to write it with authority and hindsight.
I came up with the idea for New Sheets in 1984. I’d gone through a divorce, moved back to Tennessee with two babies under the age of three to start over. The moving van unloaded the boy’s bedroom furniture, toys, my piano and my bed. There were seven boxes filled with clothes, 3 plates, 3 cups, 3 glasses…you get the jest. We had only what we could move in a 6 ft. section of a semi. I had no car, no money and no job. But we (the boys and I) had one another and once we got to Tennessee, we had my family.
I kept a journal for a while just to help me through the rough spots of divorce then one night I turned down the comforter to crawl into bed and realized, I was still sleeping with the man who’d divorced me…or at least sleeping with his memories on the same bed sheets I’d had while we were married. No wonder I cried every night and worse, I couldn’t sleep.
It was time for something new. A new start. I couldn’t afford a shopping spree. I could barely buy groceries, but I literally saved quarters in a mason jar until I had enough money to go to Wal-Mart and buy a set of sheets.
It’s scary at the ugly sheets in the bottom of the sale bin at Wal-Mart. Brown and pink paisley…but they were new. Crisp. Wrinkle-free. And when I put them on the bed it was like a new page in my life. They were cheap sheets, muslin. Kinda scratchy but to me, they were silk. So after that, every new turn in my life brought a new set of sheets. I’d throw out the worn ones and turn the corner with a set of new ones. To this day, I send new sheets to friends who’ve gone through major devastating life changes.
Each set of new sheets marked a time in my lift where God stoked the fire under me, hung me over the flame and refined me like silver. By the time I hit my 50’s I could look over the prior thirty years and say with confidence…”I’ve matured. Refined. Learned.” Hence the book.
New Sheets is for anyone willing to wade the flames of refinement. The fire is hot but finished product is a gem.

Cindy Sproles is the co-founder and executive editor of Christian Devotions Ministries and  She is a popular speaker at women’s retreats and conferences and teaches at writers conferences across the nation. Cindy is the co-writer of the successful He Said, She Said devotions and is the co-host of the nationally syndicated BlogTalk Radio show, Christian Devotions Speak UP! She is a contributor to and is the director of Writers ADVANCE! Boot Camp Writers Conference. Cindy is the author of two devotional/inspirational books, one with her co-writer Eddie Jones and the most recent, a solo book, New Sheets: Thirty Days to Refine You into the Woman You Can Be. You may visit Cindy at or contact her for speaking engagements at 

Monday, October 29, 2012

Storm Preparations

We are glued to the weather reports today, watching and preparing for the arrival of Hurricane Sandy, a.k.a. Frankenstorm. We are not strangers to storm preparations. A year ago we lost power during a freak snow storm, Alfred. We also were affected by Hurricane Irene. So, we do what we can, prepare what we can and then ride it out, one day at a time.

Preparations are so important. We’ve taken heed of the warnings; we put away lawn chairs, set aside water, turned up the refrigerator and freezer, charged batteries for flashlights, and have some easy to heat meals made and MREs to get us through.

These physical preparations point us to the just as important spiritual preparations—heeding the warnings from those who know the impact of what’s coming…

There is a day when Jesus will return; Scripture says that every knee will bow. All our lives we get nudges to take spiritual things seriously. We hear of God’s love and what He did for us through Jesus’ death and resurrection. He created us and loves us enough to repair the brokenness in our lives—the broken relationship with Him. We are all separated from God because of sin but, by grace He grants us a lifetime to find Him faithful to forgive and accept His gift of eternal life through His Son. I’m praying that you heed the warnings—see the need to prepare your heart to receive Him.

For all have sinned and fall short of God’s glory and holiness…  Romans 3:23

There is none righteous. Psalm 143:28, Romans 3:10

The wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father, but through Me.”  John 14:6

There is salvation is no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved.  Acts 4:12

By grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is a gift from God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast.  Ephesians 2:8-9

As many as received Him, to them He gave the right to come children of God, even to those who believe in His name.  John 1:12
Jesus says, “Behold I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come into him, and will dine with him, and he with Me.”  Revelation 3:20

God said, “This is My Son, My chosen One; listen to Him”   Luke 9:35

This life on earth isn’t all there is. There is an eternity waiting for us—we just need to choose the destination, and the One we will follow. 
Have you made your spiritual preparations….

Praying for you,

PS, Visit my guest blog on Tuesday: Visit Vonda Skelton's website 

Monday, October 22, 2012

Here I Am, Send Me

As the Father has sent me, I AM sending you ~ John 20:21(NIV)

This passage in John’s gospel finds the disciples huddled behind locked doors after the crucifixion of Christ. They are fearful of their lives, hiding because of their association with Jesus. Suddenly Jesus is there with them, showing His scarred hands and feet, renewing their faith in the One Sent from God.
When I think of being sent, I think of missionaries, but according to Hans Franzen, Director of Intervarsity Christian Fellowship here in Connecticut, who brought forth this message during our mission week:


Jesus sent the disciples—twelve ordinary men into the world with the message of hope and life. They impacted the world, birthing the gospel into every culture they encountered. We also are given the message of hope and then sent into the world to make a difference—to be salt and light and to point others to Jesus.
When we encounter the Risen Christ in our most dark and fearful places, He gives us the bold confidence to carry His message; whether it’s into vocational ministry or ministry to your vocation, we are an arrow sent from God’s bow that brings Truth to a needy world.
During this time of recuperation (I see the orthopedic doctor this week) I have wondered whether God slowed me down for a reason. As I meditate on this passage, I’m more mindful that He is indeed sending me….somewhere.
Will you go?


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Autumn Rest

Autumn leaves

Litter lawns



Flying leaves

Trees bared as their

Outfits lie in a heap.


Pages rustle

Like leaves in the wind

Settle restlessly

At a new chapter


Heart flutters

Tachycardic beats

Unable to find rhythm

Till as an infant upon his mama's chest 

          Finds rest

My heart finds rest in You.

copyright 2012 Jeanne Doyon

Saturday, October 06, 2012

Prep Work

Prep work

As much as I love stir-fry and appreciate its healthiness, I dislike the prep work—all the chopping. Green pepper, red pepper, yellow pepper, onion, broccoli, celery…it takes forever. But, without the prep work there’s nothing to stir.
There’s a need for prep work in us too. It’s nothing new—Moses spent forty years in the desert. Jesus went forty days in the wilderness. Joseph spent time in prison. Paul was prepared in Tarsus. And, the Israelites wandered for forty years. It’s just that we don’t like the idea of a wilderness, of being set aside. Finding ourselves alone shakes us up a little—maybe a lot. But, anytime we face ourselves in solitude, we discover Christ in a fresh way. The wilderness experience gives us time to reassess our focus and draws us nearer to His heart and purpose.
The wilderness, or time on the shelf if you will, is often the prep work for His next step. It can be lonely or uncomfortable, but it’s never unfruitful. It has a way of burning away the dross so our hearts burn pure again.
Since breaking my foot on September 22nd, I am facing some prep work. I assume it has something to do with how I move forward with writing and speaking. I left my job to pursue ministry “full-time” but not sure what it’ll look like. Instead of being home, ripping into fall cleaning, I am resting as my foot heals. I think God knows I’d fill my time with other projects—too busy to be still and listen. I don’t know. But, for whatever reason, He’s decided to slow me down—for some prep work. Now, to be honest, my feet may not be moving but my mind sure is.
So, my prayer has been to slow down my whirling thoughts so I can hear His whispers. I am confident. He will accomplish in me what He intends and prepare me for the work that’s coming next. Through the prep work, He’s getting ready to stir something new in me.

How about you? Share a time when you felt set aside…what prep work did He do in you?

Waiting to be stirred,

PS: It’s not lost on me that my six-week recovery time is about 40 days. I love God’s sense of humor!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Complicated Communication

I consider myself a communicator. I write. I speak. I teach. I have dozens of journals and love to fill a blank notebook page. Yet, communicating with one another has gotten more complicated...

Take my phone…please! My Tracfone has been less reliable; more dropped calls, and I need to stand in a corner of the living room to hold a conversation because if I go to another area of the house, I lose the signal (yes, we live in the woods). John found a great cell phone plan for us. So, I ordered a new phone and signed up for a plan which I hope will be plenty for my simple needs.

My new phone arrived; I ported my old number to avoid changing, learning a new phone number and getting someone else’s history. I learned this lesson after my husband’s new phone number brought with it not only bill collector calls to the previous subscriber, but also the other guy’s name showing up on caller ID every time my husband placed a call.

After over two hours on the phone with customer service this weekend, my new phone finally works. My head throbbed from trying to follow the maze of directions to figure out how to find the dialer button, setting up my voicemail and, I inadvertently put the phone on silent while scrolling through the techie-jungle. There’s no such thing as just making a phone call. It’s an all-afternoon event to charge my phone, find my address book, navigate a microscopic keyboard to send a text message and press send. So, I have come to a realization—communication has gotten VERY complicated!

This awareness makes me thankful that I can communicate with the God of the Universe without a data plan; He doesn’t have voicemail. His line is never busy. His ringtone is Truth spoken to a listening heart. He communicates to me and through me in the most uncomplicated fashion—called relationship. Even with the ringer off, He hears me and I can hear him because of His uncomplicated connection called prayer. All this means I have the unlimited, wireless access plan to the Creator of the Universe. How cool and uncomplicated is that! He is accessible anytime, any day, and anywhere. It makes me remember a time when I told my children, God’s phone number:

Jeremiah 33:3 “Call to Me and I will answer you. I will tell you marvelous and wondrous things that you could never figure out on your own.”  (The Message)

Who ‘ya gonna call?

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Be Astonished!

While attending a writer’s workshop last week, I read Psalm 143:5, “...I muse on the work of Your hands." I found the word muse interesting since my focus would be on writing all week. So I did a little digging, found a few more verses* and the Middle English origin of the word: BE ASTONISHED

I wondered. I whispered, Please, Lord, help me to be astonished this week. I tucked that prayer away and got caught up in the whirlwind of workshops, free writing, critique and teaching my workshops.
The last day, my drive to campus was clouded with tears, brought on by three simple words from the innkeeper. He chatted with me that morning after breakfast as I settled my bill...
“You had a good week?” He asked.

“I had a great week.”

“You did good!” He continued.

“You remind me of my dad.” I replied with a lump in my throat.

“You do know what’s going on here don’t you?” He prompted.

I must have looked puzzled and so he continued,“You need to hear that today. YOU DID GOOD.”

Suddenly, my dad's words became clear—out of the misty past. Tears welled up and my throat tightened. It’s as if my dad was giving me the encouragement I needed—and I felt a blessing from my Heavenly Father too.
I shared my story with the group as my tears flowed. Unexpected emotion rolled over me and I grappled with control. Words have a powerful affect—to build up or tear down, encourage or discourage, to give hope or cause to lose heart. Words can wound or heal. And, that morning, the Lord gave words I needed to hear—straight from the mouth of an innkeeper, yet echoed from my daddy’s heart. And, I stood astonished in the presence of God who knows my every breath and heart-need.

How has God astonished you lately? 


*In cross referencing the verse in Psalm 143:5 I also found: Psalm 105:2, Psalm 77:12 and Psalm 119:27

Monday, July 30, 2012

All Authority

     In my last blog I shared how the word “immediately” caught my attention while reading the Gospel of Mark. As I continue to read something else has caught my eye…

Jesus' Authority
     Mark 1:22 sets the stage for the areas that come under His command:
Demons – Mark 1:23-27, Mark 5:39-43
Sickness – Mark 1:30-32, 40-42, Mark 3:5
Evil – Mark 1:34, Mark 5:2-16
 Sin – Mark 2:1-13
The Sabbath – Mark 2:28
Nature – Mark 4:35-41
And, Death – Mark 5:39-43
     All authority has been given to Jesus Christ (Matthew 28:18) and throughout the gospel account He demonstrates His Lordship, even down to shushing the demons so they wouldn’t spill the beans about His identity. Yes, they recognized Him before others did.
     His identity hasn’t changed. He has authority over all things—even in my life. I see Him keeping the demonic and forces of evil at bay. I see His ability to heal and restore. I see Him forgiving sin and giving us the desire to live differently by His Spirit. I see the importance of His rest—practicing the Sabbath principle of ceasing from our works. I am amazed at His command of the storms, wind, rain and the ability to say, “be still” both in nature and in our hearts. And I rejoice - He has taken command of death, so that we can live eternally with Him because of what Jesus accomplished on the cross.
     How does this concept of Jesus’ authority challenge your thinking about things going on around you? What area do you need Him to take control?
     According to Mark 6:7 and Luke 9:1, what authority have we been given?
     Challenge us, Lord to see You as all powerful and having all authority,



Sunday, July 22, 2012

Immediately...Means Now

"Begin reading God’s Word and don’t stop until something leaps off the page and begins to settle into and challenge your thinking."

This idea is not new, but after reading some articles in my In Touch Magazine, Charles Stanley challenged me to take whatever time necessary to hear from God through His Word. So, I sat down with my Bible this afternoon and began to read the Gospel of Mark. Right away, the word ‘immediately’ repeated over and over, along with the words, ‘follow me’.

Honestly, there are very few things I do immediately. So, seeing the repetition I knew this was something I wanted to explore.  I underlined as I read and began a list of things mentioned:

The heavens opened immediately after Jesus was baptized, and God’s voice was heard

The Spirit immediately impelled Jesus to enter the wilderness

Simon and Andrew immediately left their nets and followed Jesus

Jesus called James and John and they immediately followed Him

Jesus entered Capernaum, immediately entered the synagogue and began to teach on the Sabbath

Immediately news about Jesus went out everywhere into the surrounding districts

Immediately after leaving the synagogue they went to Simon’s house

The disciples immediately told Jesus about Simon’s mother in law who was sick

A leper is immediately cleansed of leprosy

…And, this is just the first chapter.

I wonder what God is asking me to do immediately. And, I wonder whether I am as focused on my mission to be obedient and follow wherever He leads. As I continued to read, a prayer formed in my mind:

 Lord, help me be intentional and immediate when You ask me to follow You. And help me to notice the way You are calling me each day in my journey.

I want to be purposeful in my relationship with God and how I pass it along. How about you? And, how has His Word prompted you to dig deeper?


Sunday, July 15, 2012

El Roi - The God Who Sees Me

God sees me.
He sees my heart; He knows my frame.
He knows I am weak, tired and all but brain-drained. He knows my struggles.
                 He knows the reason for my emptiness.
He sees when I fall.  
                 He knows what I need.
                                         He knows me.

He knew David, though he looked like a grubby shepherd boy—God saw Him as the man he would become—a king.

He knew Peter, a man who was impulsive and put his mouth in gear before his brain woke up—God saw him as a leader and great orator who would deliver powerful words to the hearts of those who needed a wake-up call. God also knew that Peter would deny him, yet offered him grace one morning while having breakfast when He asked the question, “Peter, Do you love me?”

He knew Judas, though his heart was darkened and plotted to betray Jesus, the Son of God dipped the morsel of bread and shared it with him during the Passover meal—an expression of honor.

God called Gideon to be a warrior even though he was only a youth. He saw a heart who would contend for what was right.

He sees you. He knows your heart. He sees your potential. He sees the person you are becoming as you trust Him on the journey. He sees you as redeemed, washed whiter than snow, delivered from the snares the enemy sets. He sees you eternally. Complete in Him.

God knows and understands what my heart desperately needs; I am so glad, because I often have trouble explaining it to Him.

Trust that He knows...


Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Freedom Isn't Free

It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery… Galatians 5:1

The saying, Freedom isn’t free, is certainly something to ponder. I am more in tune with freedom’s cost now that I have a son in the military. I pray he never has to pay the ultimate sacrifice and I am thankful for his willingness to serve.
We can take our liberty for granted. We’re so used to the ability to do whatever we want to do, say what we want to say, and enjoy the historic freedoms that our country is built upon. Yet, freedom is erosive—for the price of security we willingly give up our liberty little bits at a time. But how far are we willing to go?  Once freedoms are gone it is impossible to get them back. We may want to think carefully before surrendering them.
Though we may lose freedom here in our country—there is a freedom that has been bought and paid for, one we cannot lose and can never be taken away—the freedom Jesus Christ purchased on the cross of Calvary. We are freed from sin’s hold and death’s grip when we accept His sacrifice on our behalf. Our soul, once dead and disconnected from God is given new life—eternal life because of His victory over the grave.

The cost of freedom makes it valuable—not taken for granted—not surrendered without a fight. Jesus paid the ultimate sacrifice for every person to free them from the penalty of the vice grip of sin. With His words from the cross, “It is finished” He accomplished the work and invites us to receive Him as Savior. Will you receive Him?
Loved. Chosen. Forgiven. Set free.

Receive His free gift,

Day #4 - 31 Day Blog Challenge

The Good News
We have forgiveness in Christ
And eternal life with God
If you would like to know more about what Jesus did for you and
Discover freedom in Him as your Savior:

For all have sinned and fall short of God’s glory… Romans 3:23

Wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life… Romans 6:23

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us..and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness… 1 John 1:9

For by grace you have been saved though faith; not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not a result of works that no one should boast… Ephesians 2:8-9

As many as received Him..He gave the right to become children of God… John 1:12

God so loved the world, He gave His Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life… John 3:16

…the Son shall make you free, you shall be free indeed. John 8:36

Friday, June 01, 2012


Snakes....I hate them!

While working in my basement office, I heard a faint thud and caught movement out of the corner of my eye. There on the step, was a snake—lying still—stunned by the impact. It had fallen from the foundation onto the basement stairs. It wasn’t a big snake—it doesn’t matter; I hate snakes.  

They seem to appear out of nowhere, startling me out of my wits.

In a split second, I grabbed a pair of scissors, thinking I could either pick it up or worse, cut it in half—I wasn’t fussy. (Note to self: attempting to cut a stunned snake in half “unstuns” him). Both failed. It slithered away as I stood there with trembling scissors in my hand.

This was the second time in a week a snake had startled me in the work room. One caught in the phone wires and hung there writhing. The previous summer a parade of baby snakes slithered past my feet while I sat at the computer. 

It was such a problem, I devised a snake catching kit—nothing fancy, just my version of a Have-a-Heart-Attack-Trap—a small covered box and a pair of tweezers. I caught each baby and took them outside, letting them go in the woods. The only one I couldn’t rescue had landed deep in a spider’s web and wiggled crazily while mama spider prepared lunch.

I wonder if Eve felt this way when the serpent slithered into the Garden and began to sweet talk her into eating the fruit God had forbidden. 

This is Satan’s way. He nonchalantly falls in our path when we least expect it and begins to weave his story. He woos us into believing his lies and half-truths. He tempts us into trying the “apple” while assuring us the consequences are not what they appear.

A few snakes manage to slither into my life too—always when I least expect them. The only thing that will cut them down to size is the Word of God because lies are exposed only by the Truth. You can be sure I won’t use a Have-a-Heart-Trap either—only a Sword will do.

“Take the…Sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God…”      Ephesians 6:17
Wage war with His weapons,


Sunday, May 13, 2012

Battles Sources

Battles are a way of life. And, battles for the Christian are part of following Christ. We wage war with principalities and powers because our enemy is doing everything in his power to thwart God—not that he is going to be successful, but he is giving it his all. The enemy can’t win your soul but he can cause you to become discouraged with his schemes.
It’s good to understand that battles can come from different sources, so let’s take a look at some examples from Scripture.

Different Kinds of Battles

Battles can be…

From Fatigue 
            Exodus 17:7-16 - the enemy attacks when we’re weak and vulnerable.
            Elijah – runs from Jezebel in 1 Kings 19 - The enemy attacks after a great victory.

From Sin

            David - 2 Samuel 11&12, Psalm 51 - David silently battled after sinning with Bathsheba.
            Prodigal – Luke 15:11-32 - The Prodigal struggled until he “came to his senses.”
            Saul – Acts 8:1 – 9:22 

For a Larger Purpose

            Jesus – He suffered so that He could save people from sin
            Mary – Luke 2 - She bore the shame of her circumstances to raise the Messiah
            Esther – She was taken captive so she could save her people
            Joseph – Genesis 37:18-28, Genesis 45:4-8

For Our Character

            Israelites wander in the wilderness – Numbers 14:22-23
            Jacob – working for his uncle, Laban - Genesis 27-29
            Joseph – in prison, Genesis 37:2-11

From Doing God’s work/Doing the Right Thing

            Paul –Acts 23:11
            Daniel – Praying 3x day/lion’s den – Daniel 6
            Meschach, Shadrach, Abednego – Refuse to bow – Daniel 1-3
            Job – Job 1, 8
            Stephen - Acts 6:1-6, 8-15, 7: 1-60

Expected – 2 Chronicles 20:12-22
Unexpected – Exodus 17 

While investigating these Scriptures, identify some of your past or present battles. What is their source? In hindsight, can you see a purpose for them?
Stand Firm! Trust in your Victor, Jesus

* This is an excerpt from the Bible Study called, Battle Worn, Battle Weary: Finding Victory in Surrender