• lane dirt road wooden fence

    Love Thy Neighbor As Thyself, Unless They Are (fill in the blank)

    “But when the Pharisees had heard that he had put the Sadducees to silence, they were gathered together. Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” (Matthew 22:34-40)   Was there anyone that Jesus didn’t love? Was there anyone that He was unwilling to associate with?…

  • I can do all things through Christ

    I Can Do All Things Through Christ Which Strengtheneth Me

    I was going to write an encouraging tidbit that inspired positive self-talk as we engage in trying new things and setting far-reaching goals, however; my daughter has managed to sum up my thoughts in a cute little story, so I’ll just hush up and let her do the inspiring:   Once upon a time there was a little girl named Claire. She didn’t know how to ride a bicycle. When her dad gave her a pink bicycle she was shocked! “Dad, I love the bicycle, but I don’t know how to ride it,” she wailed. “I’ll teach you,” he said. “If you say you can’t, then you can’t; if you say you can, then you can.” “I can do it!”…

  • Judge Not: A Hard Lesson Learned

    “Thou Shalt Not Judge” is a lesson I tend to learn over and over again.   The following experience happened to our family last year and still weighs on my mind: “Here’s my money, Mom,” my daughter said, smiling as she handed me two large bills, “I want to give it all.”“All of it?” I questioned, wondering if she wasn’t being too generous.It was a lot of money to give a homeless person on the street corner, but who was I to say how she could or could not spend her allowance money.My three kids and I were in a frenzy as our truck rolled to a stop at a red light, for there standing on the corner was a…

  • Freeing Ourselves of Barnacles The Miracle Of Forgiveness

    Freeing Ourselves Of Barnacles: The Miracle Of Forgiveness

    He was a sailor. He loved the ocean and the ships on which he sailed. And despite the rough and temperamental seas, he always managed to arrive home safely. He was my husband’s hardworking and adventurous grandfather, Benjamin O.Of all the threats to a ship, barnacles may be one of the most fascinating. In his life history, Grandpa recorded the following around 1924, “Had the ship’s barnacles scraped and bottom painted. I heard it cost $6,000 dollars.”     On her website, Dr. Jean Davidson shares a short and beautiful metaphor regarding barnacles. I hope you’ll take the time to read it. You can find it HERE. When I refuse to forgive or don’t offer complete forgiveness, my life becomes like a ship…

  • Open Doors

    The Day I Decided To Keep The Doors Open

    Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. (Rev 3:20)   Sometimes it’s difficult to keep the doors open.   “Make sure the doors remain closed.” It’s a thought that runs through my mind often, and one I share with my children on a regular basis, especially when we’re expecting guests in our home. Some messes are best hidden behind closed doors. At least, that’s what I used to think. I tend to keep the front rooms of the house clean and orderly, welcoming all to see them in their state of near perfection. But the clutter, the untidiness,…

  • Restoring His Sabbath Day

    Restoring His Day: Authentic Sabbath Worship

    Sunday. The Sabbath. A day of rest. One day in seven designed for us to renew ourselves physically, mentally, and spiritually from the toils of the previous week, and to prepare our selves for the week to come.   The Sabbath is a special gift to us from a loving from God. The Sabbath is HIS day, and he asks that we honor it.   “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. “Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: “But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy…

  • Treasure chests of words

    Treasure Chests of Words

    The scriptures are a treasure chest of words that we can turn to when in need of instruction, inspiration, or encouragement.   Jesus, the perfect communicator, provided us with:   WORDS OF INSTRUCTION PARABLES TO INSPIRE COUNSEL TO ENCOURAGE   What a blessing these words are for us!   I have my own treasure chests of words.   When someone emails me a special thank you or a thoughtful compliment, I stash it away in a special file folder in my email account. When I receive a written note in the mail, I add it to the growing collection of kind words carefully kept inside a ziploc bag. When someone says something meaningful to me in person, I hurry home…

  • Solving puzzles with light

    Solving The Puzzles Of Life With Light

    There is so much about life that is good. There is so much about life that is bad.   At times the good and bad get all mixed up and jumbled together in my mind that, like puzzle pieces, it’s difficult for me to make sense of it all.   How exactly am I supposed to feel about life with its mixture of good and bad? Happy? Sad? Mad?   This world we live in can be confusing to our emotions. Confusing. Overwhelming. Exhausting. Some days I long to pull the covers over my head and ignore it all, as in shut out the world, isolate myself, and focus on my own sense of happiness.     But I can’t.…

  • Eyes window to soul

    The Eyes Are The Window To The Soul

    Our eyes, the window to the soul, have the power to build or to destroy.   Recently a young man posted on social media that he is struggling with severe isolation. In addition to being neglected by friends and family, he feels invisible when out in public. He’ll walk through crowds of people and not one person will make eye contact with him, let alone offer a friendly greeting. His story is all too familiar. Perhaps you can relate.   It’s no secret that we live in a fast-paced world where oft times our only connection with others is through social media or our phone.   Sadly, we’ve grown comfortable with this type of connection. It’s fast, convenient, and non-committal.…

  • Authentic life

    31 Days To An Authentic Life

    Welcome to 31 Days to an Authentic Life!   Authenticity. We crave it. We long for relationships that are authentic–genuine, real, true– but are often unsure how to go about creating them.   How does one actually LIVE an authentic life on a day-to-day basis with the people in their lives? How can one create a close, abiding relationship with God? How can we connect with family members in powerful, lasting ways? How can we be strengthened through friendships? How might we connect with neighbors and strangers in convicting ways? How can we be true to ourselves?   These questions and more will be addressed in my posts this month. I hope you’ll join me in creating a more authentic…