Perhaps this is the moment for which you have been created.
Hello Dear One,
There’s an old story about a pilot who came over the intercom and said, “Good news ladies and gentlemen: We’ve got a very strong tailwind and are making excellent time. The bad news is that our navigation equipment has gone down, so we have no idea where we are.”
Some people move through life pursuing their purpose. There is no doubt which way they are headed. Others are on the road to destruction. They become obsessed with work, electronics, or sports. Others pursue money and/or fame. Some are addicted to their favorite sitcom to the exclusion of all else. Drugs and alcohol and all of the above can be numbing behaviors. Sometimes we are so sure we are headed in the right direction only to discover that we are on the fast track to nowhere. How far do we have to travel before we stop and ask for direction?
Here is the great news! Romans 12:2 states that “we are to be transformed by the renewal of the mind.” You have two choices. You can adhere to what the culture determines valuable or be transformed by God and embrace the value He planted in you to begin with. You were created with a plan and a purpose. Stop for a moment and ask yourself, “Am I pursuing what the culture values or am I pursuing God? What is my final destination? Am I on the right path? Or lost? Prayer will connect you to the navigation tower. Will you stop and ask for direction?
Cast all your anxiety on him because He cares for you. ` 1 Peter 5:7
Hello Dear One,
A question for you: What do you need to let go?
Some things were not meant for you to carry. They are just too heavy. What do you need to release to God right now? Write it on the balloons.
Now see the balloon as soaring into the heavens. When you let go, something magical happens. You give God room to work. Breathe. Count to 10. Let the worry and anxiety go. Do it as often as necessary till peace finds a home in hour heart. I’ll be praying for you. Linda
"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself” (Luke 10:27).
Hello weary one,
Yes, we have been busy, so busy being the Good Samaritan, with our jobs, endless house work, caring for children and/or aging parents, that we might have missed an important part of the above scripture: “Care for your neighbor as yourself.”
Jesus demonstrated the need for self-care. When He was tired from a day of healing the sick, He went to the mountain by himself. When He was thirsty, He stopped by a well for a drink. When He needed companionship, He visited friends in Bethany. He told Martha to stop her fussing in the kitchen and come sit down with Him. You, and me too, need to get comfortable making our needs a priority. We can’t give tender care to others while we ourselves are overwhelmed.
Years ago, I used to sing beautiful lyrics to an old crooner’s ballad, “She may be weary, women do get weary, wearing the same shabby dress, so when she’s weary, try a little tenderness.” Friend, give yourself what you most need right now. Some tenderness. Sit with pen in hand and write what you most long for. Do you need a day away? Can you manage a relaxing bubble bath? Or a walk on the beach with a buddy?
Sometimes, our most pressing need is for spiritual refreshment. Jesus understands how you feel. He knows that life can be difficult and sometimes downright unmanageable. He said, “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life.” Same verse, different translation: “Come to me if you are heavy laden and I will give you rest” (Matt. 11:28) Christ’s simple answer to our complex burdens, “Come.” Linda
“I want you to be concerned about your next-door neighbor. Do you know your next-door neighbor?”
Jesus gave us one great commandment, "you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself” (Luke 10:27).
God expects us to not only care for our neighbor, but to see as neighbor anyone who is in need. Mother Teresa has been called “The Saint of the Gutters” during her lifetime because of her charitable work with the poor. Pope Frances said. "She bowed down before those who were spent, left to die on the side of the road, seeing in them their God-given dignity. She made her voice heard before the powers of this world, so that they might recognize their guilt for the crime of poverty they created."
So, this week, I ask you to ponder, “Who is my neighbor and what is their need?” Do they need my time, attention, or financial assistance? Will you be the Good Samaritan for someone this week?
Embracing my neighbor,
Joy in th
God knows the secrets of our hearts. Psalm 44:21
Hello Dear One,
I know many of my friends are addicted to Facebook. Sometimes I am also. Such smiling faces. Glowing reports of kids performing perfectly. Winning trophies. Getting scholastic awards. And celebrating anniversaries as if their relationship was the model for romance paperbacks. Once in the while, someone will post a prayer request for a sick relative or friend. I get it. No one wants the world to know that their heart is breaking. That their marriage is in trouble or their kids are on drugs. No one wants to post about their financial woes. But here is a warning: don’t let these posts persuade you that somehow their life is perfect. We all put on a brave front. Truth is: we are all living in the middle of a mess.
Jesus warned us that “in this world you will have tribulation” (John 16:13). I am not recommending that you share your pain on Facebook. I am suggesting you confess your pain to Jesus and one or two trusted sister-friends. Finding a safe place of authenticity where you can be real is your true path to hope and healing. Only then will you find the peace you so desperately need to experience.
You are so loved just as you are.
with liberty and justice for all.
I love the worship refrain by Chris Tomlin: Light of the World, you stepped down into darkness, open my eyes let me see. Beauty that made my heart adore you. . .
Jesus commanded that You and I are to be that “light of the world” (Matt. 5:14). To help others see beauty and worship God. However, as we stand and pledge allegiance to one nation under God, with liberty and justice for all, I am afraid we are no longer that nation. We have become a people who profess patriotism as an excuse to differentiate and discriminate one from another. Our nation is divided by partisan politics, prejudice, racism, and sexism. One nation under a Holy God? Aren’t we all created in the image of God?
Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859), the great French statesman of the 19thcentury and author of Democracy in America, traveled these United States in search of the qualities that defined America’s greatness as a democracy. Tocqueville wrote: “America is great because she is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, she will cease to be great.”
Jesus gave us one great commandment, "you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself” (Luke 10:27). Love is what will make America great again and America good again. Love will make America the beautiful again. Love for all regardless. . .
Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
Hello Dear one,
Sometimes amid the hustle and bustle of our days, we dismiss our need for soul renewal. But oh, when the realization hits, when our resources are depleted, when our hope diminishes and gloom sets deep, quiet becomes our refuge. And in the stillness, we knock on God’s door seeking beauty. As Plato wrote: “The power of the good has taken refuge in the Beautiful.
Are you seeking the Beautiful? The quiet renewal in God’s creation. Are you taking full advantage of living in His paradise created with you in mind? God knows that you and I need a break from noise, the endless buzzing of technology, the idle senseless chatter. The wise seek to meet Him in His glorious garden. In the tranquility of a park or beside quiet waters, we admire His creation and pronounce “it good and very good.” And through our eyes, we quench the thirsting of our souls. Goodness and kindness emerge, energy and enthusiasm are renewed, and hope springs from our once dry and parched wells. Take time, my friend, to seek beauty.
Joy in the Morning
"Nevertheless I am continually with You; You hold me by my right hand." Psalm 73:23
Hello, my dearly loved friend,
My, adopted in my heart, grandson Mark was here for two days. He is growing so fast, going to be in the 7th grade this coming school year. It seems like yesterday I would hold his hand to keep him safe when crossing the street, or to keep him from getting lost in a crowd. Often, I grabbed his little hand to keep him from stumbling when he was coming down the stairs. Grandmas do that when they love their sweet precious little ones.
The Psalmist said, “My steps had nearly slipped” (72:2). Lately, Jim and I have had lots of bumps in the road and that is when I get out my cd player and start to sing old gospel. Loud! It’s both a plea and an affirmation. Lately I’ve been singing: Many things about tomorrow, I don’t seem to understand, But I know who holds tomorrow, and I know who holds my hand.
Do you remember that chorus? Another song I belt out is, Leaning on the Everlasting Arms. I’m sure some of you are facing trials, and if you and I are not vigilant, it’s easy to slip in our faith and become discouraged and lose hope.
Dear ones, don’t fret. God is very near and longs to hold your hand. Whatever reminds you of His Presence, be it meditating on His Word, walking in nature, prayer, just do it until you feel His everlasting arms embracing you. Jesus said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." So he stretched it out and it was completely restored” (Matt. 12:13). Stretch forth your hand in faith, dear one. Hope, healing, and restoration are on their way.
Reaching for His hand, now and always, Linda