Monthly Archives: January 2016



Father God is
Always good;
Intentionally blessing
The world
He loves.


One of the most tried and true weapons that Satan uses against us is this question:  “Did God really say…”
He started way back in the Garden of Eden; it worked, so why look for something else?


There are numerous variations on this:
“He didn’t really mean…”
“That’s too good to be true.”
“That was for Bible times; God doesn’t do that today.”
“God doesn’t talk to you.”


Some are more subtle:
Self doubt


The truth is, God talks to us all the time.  He wants to say things to us more than we want to listen.  He speaks through Scripture, prophetic words, dreams, vision, “coincidences” and inward impressions.


How do we attract the word of the Lord?
Be good stewards of what He has already spoken.

The only one who can protect and keep words that God has given to you is…you.  That’s your job.


I used to have a pastor who taught that we should not hold onto words that were given years ago.  They are “old wine.”  That actually is not in line with Scripture.  Abraham had to hold to God’s promise of a son for twenty-five years.  I would say that is a while.


I have decided that part of my Lenten discipline this year will be to write out words that God has given me so that I can be more faithful.


My challenge to you is this:

Write down at least one Bible verse that has been important in your life.



Now, write down at least one personal word God has given you, through a vision, dream, prophetic word, impression, coincident…


What seem to be the barriers to receiving these words and appropriating them?  Ask God to help you lay down anything that gets in your way.


Put these two words where you can read them often.  Choose one thing you can do to respond to each one.


May the words you have heard from God be more real; may they come to fruition.


Jesus, the Hope for all who are broken:
In depression or sorrow;
Alone and afraid;
He is the way to a brighter tomorrow;
His love for you is ever displayed.


Jesus, the Answer for all on the Earth:
Who labor, study or play;
Who guard and defend;
He is the Author of life in every way;
Healer, Redeemer, Shepherd and Friend.


Jesus, the Prince of Peace to every soul:
Whether resting or in strife
Or seeking His Face;
He alone is the Way, the Truth and the Life;
Thanks be to Jesus, Fountain of Grace.


Principles and figures,
Details and facts;
When it comes to information,
Very little lacks,
But what does my heart know?


Passages and verses,
Known line by line;
I have memorized Scripture well,
Treasured in my mind,
But what does my heart know?


The love of my Father,
His strength and grace?
His ever atentive presence
His warm embrace?
Does my heart know these things?


Jesus’ saving power,
The Prince of Peace,
Who is pleased to call me, “sister,”
Joy that does not cease;
Does my heart know these things?


Academic knowledge
Talents and skill
Are gifts from God to help us live,
But they don’t fulfill;
My heart must know the Lord.


To know his perfect ways,
His love for me;
The one in whom I live and move;
This is what feeds me;
My heart must know the Lord.


In the beauty of a sunrise;
In the sound of the mighty sea
Are magnificent expressions
Of God’s love for you and me.


In the joy of happy laughter;
And affection from family
Come expressions of God’s great love
That revives and sets us free.


When he meets with us in stillness
Or joins us in glorious praise,
His loving presence enfolds us
As we submit to his ways.


Near or far, away or at home,
In days past, now or times to be,
God’s profound expressions of love
Are spoken to you and me



I have been pondering a question that seems to have no answer:
What do we think and do when things have not gone as we expected or hoped they would?


When I was in my teens and twenties, I could not have predicted that my life would go the way it has:
I certainly had no idea that there would be tragedies and loss.
I thought maybe the course of my life would include marriage and children, but it didn’t.
I have accomplished things I never thought possible.
There have been victories and blessings I didn’t know to ask for.


Jesus’ disciples experienced this in following Him, especially when He was crucified.  They were sure that this was wrong…or that they had been wrong to follow Him.
I don’t know that His resurrection was any easier for them to wrap their minds around.  They were completely undone and disoriented.  Everything they thought would happen didn’t; things they didn’t expect or want did.
The result:  They were brought to Pentecost and transformed into world-changing apostles.


So what to do when life doesn’t go the way we expected…or even wanted?
I don’t know, except to trust the One who does.



You have put a new song of praise in our mouths.
We will sing to you all our lives, as long as we have breath.
We will praise you when we gather
We will sing a new song to you from the ends of the earth, from the mountaintops and the depths of the sea.


In some of the litergical traditions, January 1 is the Feast of the Holy Name, which remembers Jesus’ presentation in the temple (Luke 2:22-39.)
I am intrigued by words, especially names.  Even when we don’t know their meanings, what we are called greatly affects us:  How we feel about ourselves, whether we like the name we have been given; the images and characteristics a particular name brings to mind.
Then, there are the nicknames that get assigned to us.  They can be as powerful as our given ones.
The Bible is full of stories about names and their importance.  When Jacob told the angel that he would not let him go until the angel blessed him, his name was changed from “Supplanter” or “Swindler” to “One who wrestled with God.”  (Jacob to Israel.)


God says a lot about his own name.  He says we are to honor it and not take it in vain.
Jesus has the Name that is above all names.


Of all the plays on words in Scripture, my absolute favorite is this:  The Holy Spirit impregnates Miriam (Mary in Greek) which means, “rebellious, disobedient, bitter or strong” and we get Yeshua (Jesus) “God Saves.”  Emmanuel, “God With Us.”  How wonderful is that!


One application that comes to mind is this:  God is not put off or undone by human rebellion or disobedience; instead, He knows exactly what to do about it.  I’m so grateful for this: “While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”  (Romans 5)

God came into our desperate situation and saved us.  He delivered us from the hand of our enemy.  He knew how helpless we were and rescued us.


He still does that today.  Sometimes, I think my name should mean, “helpless Babe.”  Apart from God, I can do nothing.  I can’t figure things out, see what’s coming or understand deeper meanings, unless God reveals all of that.  Even if I have half a clue, I can’t prosper apart from God.  I am utterly in need of Him.

God has many names (or descriptions)
Lord, Savior, Redeemer, Healer, Provider, Protector, Shield, Creator, Comforter, Helper, Teacher…
What is your favorite name for God?


Here I am, Lord,
And empty vessel.
Every dream
Has been laid down.
I have come to ask
For your filling;
Where I feel lost,
May I be found.


Fill my heart;
Enfold my soul
In your loving presence,
Till I feel whole.


I don’t know, Lord,
What I should ask for;
All I know
Is loving you.
I need your presence
Oh living word
To give me life
And strength anew.


Fill my heart;
Enfold my soul
In your loving presence,
Till I feel whole.