Category Archives: Christmas

November 25, 2019 morning

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Good morning, DearHeart.

God loves impossible situations. Over and over God’s word shares the insanely bizarre pickles of His followers, yet God doesn’t leave. He stills them. They panic, He stills them more … He stills you and me out of our panic until we can hear Him.

This time of year my guys hunt very early and late in the evening. One of my favorite parts of them hunting is listening to their stories of what animals and birds they see and hear from their deer stands. As we wake each morning, there is an entire creation coming alive … stirring in the woods, venturing out … tentative … stretching … sniffing the air, then sniffing the earth beneath their feet.

They get still and God pulls them into His care.

In the intimacy of the new sunrise , a settling of hearts and emotions pulls us to His stillness. He reminds us He is near. He reminds us Who He is, and who we are in His presence:

“Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell me, if you know so much. Who determined its dimensions and stretched out the surveying line? What supports its foundations, and who laid its cornerstone as the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?”

‭‭Job‬ ‭38:4-7‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Picture that.

When we think our chaos will consume us, a new sunrise offers an invitation for our eyes to open to the deeper invitation of one day’s gift, one day at a time, with the Giver of all good gifts.

When He speaks, stars spew from His lips … you can trust that all around you … around your broken places … the shadows are trembling in the light of His presence on this new day. God’s got a plan.

Wake up.

Your shadows are trembling.

Your eyes rise with confidence.

Go.

November 26, 2019 language

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Good morning, DearHeart.

There is something so sacred, so deeply holy about the way Of God toward His people. He speaks to the very innermost part of our heart- in our heart’s unique language.

“When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Now go out where it is deeper, and let down your nets to catch some fish.” “Master,” Simon replied, “we worked hard all last night and didn’t catch a thing. But if you say so, I’ll let the nets down again.” And this time their nets were so full of fish they began to tear! A shout for help brought their partners in the other boat, and soon both boats were filled with fish and on the verge of sinking.” Luke‬ ‭5:4-7‬ ‭NLT‬‬

When God spoke to the wise men, He spoke to them through the stars. When He spoke to a young shepherd, He used the language through sheep. When He spoke to these seasoned fishermen, He used the language of fish. God loves our tribes. It is not by accident that He has individually set us in our place, so He can meet us right where we are. He can speak to us in our own language that our hearts can understand most clearly. This place in which you find yourself today is the place where holiness breaks into your familiar world and speaks to the language of your heart. The mundane is not so mundane after all. In case you are wondering … you are right where you belong. Do not take that lightly.

Wake up.

Notice God’s intentions.

Go.

November 21, 2019 brothers

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Good morning, DearHeart.

Have you been told, and do you really know that you are a work in progress? Sometimes, I think we approach God with small thoughts of ourselves. We are maybe ashamed, or heavy, or guilt laden for … being human, … making human error, … thinking human thoughts.

I grew up with brothers, have mostly male cousins (I’m the only girl grand on Dad’s side of the family), and I raised boys to men. I’m really, really partial to the brother stories in God’s Word. One of my favorite is when Andrew meets Jesus and knows he will follow Christ forever, but first he went back and got his brother, Simon:

“Andrew went to find his brother, Simon, and told him, “We have found the Messiah” (which means “Christ” ). Then Andrew brought Simon to meet Jesus. Looking intently at Simon, Jesus said, “Your name is Simon, son of John—but you will be called Cephas” (which means “Peter” ).” John 1:41-42 NLT

Jesus laid eyes on the Peter, a young rowdy fisherman. Not an ordinary glance, not just any eyes, He looked at Peter with God-eyes … the eyes of a Maker who knew what He created him for before He placed him in his mother’s womb. He saw Peter’s future … “upon this rock I will build my church”. Jesus also knew how messy the process would be for Peter to go from here to there. Because Christ knew the end of Peter’s story,

knew his legacy,

knew his impact to the Kingdom,

Jesus set a Covenant in place with him, and

told him who he really was.

Jesus changes everything.

He tells us who we are … “I know this is who you’ve been, who you think you are, but this is who I see you to be. No matter your failures or accomplishments … they pale in comparison to who God Almighty says you are.

You are His.

You are fully known to Him.

He sees you becoming.

He is with you, holding you, fighting for you.

What a freeing place to start.

Wake up.

See yourself through His eyes.

Go.

November 20, 2019 Chex

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Good morning, DearHeart.

I am a homebody. Deluxe. Home is my place of peace.

I’ve always been compelled to bring a certain level of comfort to our home … a place where our sons and their families come as a place of refuge and peace … an escape, like my mom & dad created for us – a home that Steve, and Russ, and I, and our kids still run to.

My guys were in and out this past weekend. Luke came through and smelled Aunt Norma Lee’s recipe for ‘trash’ (Chex mix) baking in the oven and said, ‘It smells like fall in here – I love this time of year!’ I totally agree. Deer season begins next weekend and there are certain sounds and smells and traditions that invite them in. It is intentional.

I want my home to be a safe haven for my family, for Dale to gladly anticipate coming home each day. I want my home to be

-relaxing; a refuge from this busy life;

-warm and loving, so that my man and my family feel my love before they even see me;

-a place of tranquility and peace, a place that is conducive to learning of God’s unconditional love for them.

-a place free of clutter so our minds can likewise be free of clutter. (I’m working on this one, lol).

-to be inviting and welcoming. I want to share God’s love with those coming into our house by how our home feels; not stuffy and perfect, but rather comfortable and loving. Creating a place we call ‘home’ provides a foundation for reaching, caring for, and loving on others.

“By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.”

‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭24:3-4‬ ‭ESV‬‬

‭‭Wake up. ‬‬

‭‭Create warmth. ‬‬

‭‭Precious and pleasant. ‬‬

‭‭Go. ‬‬

November 18, 2019 transforming

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Good morning, DearHeart.

When we were in Alaska in 2015, I picked up rocks from this beach in Homer. Those rocks are on my window sill at my kitchen sink. They make me think of that year … my year of so many losses, and of my total dependence on God. He held me steady when my life had grown so heavy, I couldn’t stand on my own.

He held me up.

He holds me now.

His constant presence has transformed me in so many ways over the years, but even more so through the trials. Like those smooth rocks that had been transformed on that pebbled beach, under a painted sky where the waves at the shore swayed

back and forth,

steady like a heartbeat,

soothing and smoothing.

The rocks remind me of how the saving love of Jesus covers heartbreaking inadequacy, and the messiness of human brokenness. Those rocks sing the song of redemption. They represent the intensity of His life-saving power through the journey. Christ showed me who I was through His eyes, and that He was all I needed. Can you see yourself through the eyes of the God who made you? Are you willing to to take the journey that leads to being transformed by His presence?

“Take a good look at God’s wonders – they’ll take your breath away.” Psalm 66:5 Msg

Wake up.

Allow transform.

Go.

November 15, 2019 men

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Dale and Rush. Aren’t they the cutest?!

Good morning, DearHeart.

“Through wisdom is a house builded; And by understanding it is established; And by knowledge are the chambers filled With all precious and pleasant riches.”

Proverbs 24:3-4 ASV

The ways of God are a mystery which defies my understanding. As I look back over the journey of my life, it is humbling for me to realize His hand has led me to where I am today.

Every generation comes with its own distinctions. Every child is unique. Throw in varied and never before experienced situations, and understanding is imperative. We need to not only grasp each situation and the emotions of our family members, we need to interpret them correctly and with empathy. Often this will require more of us than we possess. “I will pursue your commands, for you expand my understanding” (Psalm 119:32, NLT).

Families stretch us and grow our brains and our hearts through each unique journey. Always learning. And, every day is a new journey!

“Intelligent people are always ready to learn. Their ears are open for knowledge” (Proverbs 18:15, NLT).

Wake up.

Be ready to learn.

Embrace the journey.

Go.

November 14, 2019 held together

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Good morning, DearHeart.

You ever had one of those seasons when everything feels like it is falling apart? I’ve been there, too. I had a season like that that began a year ago. Sometimes it’s big life events that slap you around; other times is the mundane –

lost your keys,

baby pooped like an explosion,

can’t catch up on the laundry,

forgot to buy dog food …

Daily disasters add up and can be stressful. They can catch you totally off guard and rock your core.

Satan uses the big deals and the mundane to try to make you believe that you are not enough.

Satan is a liar.

God’s Word tells us…

“for through Him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see— such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through Him and for Him. He existed before anything else, and He holds all creation together.”

Colossians 1:16-17 NLT

Since I am visible and am on earth, those words – “all things” were created by Him—include me. And if I truly believe this then I have to be believe the last part as well – in Him all things hold together.

You know those days we thought we were losing it? We were falling apart?

He was holding those days together.

He was holding us together.

Circumstances may be painful. They may not be the road we would have wanted. But He is right there with us. He has never lost sight of us. I may not have understood it all but He knew completely.

In Him all things hold together.

In Him, I am held together.

And so are you.

Wake up.

Be held together.

Go.

November 13, 2019 increments

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Good morning, DearHeart.

We are all wounded, aren’t we? Sometimes, we earthlings have trouble with forgiveness. We think of it as a all or nothing venture, the way God forgives us – completely, and done.

Over.

Gone.

Totally free.

And, thank you, Father, for that miracle! For Your total forgiveness.

To me, due to our human wiring, forgiveness is a process, not a singular act to be completed in one sitting. The act of forgiveness has many layers that are revealed through time. The important part is simply that we begin the process. We open our hurt heart to a willingness to forgive. Once there is an opening, the rest will come. It may be in small and slow increments. The finishing of the process is a life work. It is alright. We have the Healer, so we have the patience to see it through to the end. Peace begins when we choose to engage our heart in the process.

“Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.”

Colossians 3:12-15 NLT

Wake up.

Forgive.

Begin and continue.

Go.

November 12, 2019 grace and gratitude

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God morning, DearHeart. “Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and incomprehensible things you do not know.” ‭‭Jeremiah‬ ‭33:3‬ ‭HCSB‬‬

Your Creator, the One who knows the hairs on your head, He has primed your heart and my heart to hear from Him.

Bow low in expectation.

Bend with eager anticipation.

His words will fill you as you take the posture of gratitude. Your mind stills to calm as you control your heart and mind to hear Him. He knows your road’s rough places. He hears the smooth places in the voice of your praise.

Sweet times of prayer are the inventor of new holy places – prayer is the very breath of our spiritual life. Will you choose to allow the space? Gratitude grows when you allow a fresh line for His great and mighty wisdom to soulfully call into you. Allow His wisdom to fall … yes, my Lord, come.

Wake up.

Feel His breath pour in.

Oh, the grace that gratitude brings! Mmm

Go

November 11, 2019 Luke

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Happy Birthday, Luke Lewis!

“The LORD your God is with you; his power gives you victory. The LORD will take delight in you, and in his love he will give you new life. He will sing and be joyful over you,”

‭‭Zephaniah‬ ‭3:17‬ ‭GNB‬‬

Amazing soul. Love you, son.