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I am a mess, a weeping mess overwhelmed with the pain of this world. I scroll through the feeds & come across a beautiful video full of truth. The actor lays out his heart, his whole heart for the world to see. And I pray that he will know that Jesus is real. I read the news that a performer has died, his songs digging up memories from a time I like to keep buried. Tears form with fond memories too; his voice & my own little song that I wrote based off one of his.

A text comes through asking for prayer for a young one. One I only know through a story of all that has happened to her. Her story gets darker & my heart breaks wide open. I cannot contain the weeping. I'm out in my backyard office. What if the neighbors hear me? (It wouldn't be the first time.) What if the painter in my house sees? I weep & in my heart I beg Jesus to help me. My mind goes back to the paintings of Jesus I just saw in the video. His eyes heal. "Jesus, please come heal. Heal the actor's heart, the little one's body & soul, all the ones that broke my heart open in Chicago hiding behind their cardboard signs attempting to explain their lives. Heal my friends & their babies. Heal it all, all the pain that is overwhelming my heart. Please take it away. I don't want to cry anymore."

And all this, it's a drop in the bucket! My brain cannot even go to all the rest of the world. All I can cry is Jesus. My office doesn't have a tissue box, only the vintage table cloth, so I must venture into my house. Can I get by the painter without him seeing my snotty face?

And then Jesus comes softly. I notice the trashes need emptying, so I empty them. The pans from Monday's dinner still need to be cleaned. Baked-on butter & olive oil must be scoured from my glass baking pans. So I scour, and I hear Him whisper, "This you can fix. Keep scrubbing, they will come clean. You know I've already told you that in this world there will be trouble. Take heart, dear one, I HAVE OVERCOME the world. I know part of your heartache is that you know I could have stopped it all & that I can fix it all. You know I'm working through it all too. You do what's in front of you. Keep talking to me. Keep writing. Keep scrubbing. Keep knitting & crocheting. Keep trusting me. I love you & I love them. And never stop weeping for them."

So I write it all out & ponder if I am to share this. Fern, my tattered & torn squirrel sits at the feeder. I can feed her, so I do. And I exhale. I exhale knowing that God doesn't have to explain anything to me. Yet, He meets me every time, each day. He invites me into the pain so I pray. And maybe, somehow, it comforts somebody to know that I am weeping with them. And He gives me things I can do when I feel so very helpless. He meets me – comes to me – every single day. I am grateful.

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I have discovered a new love for copying scripture.  Well, I should say a love for a new technique as I have always loved writing out scripture in various journals.  The world of Pinterest has opened up a new creative gateway for me, and I love it!! I have pinned thousands (literally) of font and doodling and scripture verses and quote pins as inspiration.  I began by simply copying what I saw others do as I had no original ideas of my own, but quickly I found that my own ideas began forming onto the pages…thank You, Abba…every good and perfect gift is from Him.  I started with my favorite verses that I had already memorized or had been trying to memorize for years and found that those I have struggled with were finally sticking.  I could see my journal page in my head as I searched for the exact words.  Again, Thank You, God!

Why am I excited about something that is seemingly insignificant?  One may ask, why is it a big deal that you can come up with your own ideas for how to write out a word on a page or that you can finally memorize a verse containing only a few short phrases?  To me, it is very significant.  It is significant because I have asked God to show me how to be creative.  I have asked Him to help me memorize and recall things as this has been one of the most difficult things for me to do in my brain.  I have asked Him to help me for decades for various things.  And for decades He has come through and given me things that only He could; not only for these small seemingly insignificant things, but for the HUGE, very significant things.  It is the foundation of trusting Him.  He has told His people to remember all the things that God has done for them so their children will know that He is trustworthy.  I am now on the parenting side of this concept, and I see how crucial it is to show our children how God has loved and cared for us.  He has saved us with His very own blood and sacrifice.  He has CONQUERED death by walking out of that tomb.  And He is the Light that leads us through this dark world as He is preparing our eternal Home.  And frankly, this earthly place that I live and breathe in each day seems to get darker by the day.  I have prayed for years and lived out the be anxious for nothing verse, because I knew a time when the anxieties just about buried me.  I seek Him daily, thank Him daily, depend on Him daily, cuz I’m very much afraid of the dark both literally and figuratively.  It is not because I’m super spiritual or religious.  It’s because I’m desperate for Him and the safety that is only found in Him.  I’m scared and my heart hurts from the wounds this world gives.  When I turn to Him and thank Him for all of it, He lights up my life and I can take another step down the dark hallway of life.  And today while strolling through Pinterest, this verse was on my feed.  I knew it was my next verse to journal as I sit here in the darkness depending on my LORD that WILL BE my LIGHT.  IMG_8280

This is a new verse to me, and I love it, and I need it.

Isaiah 49:11

I will turn all my mountains into roads, and my highways will be raised up.

Often times mountains seem impassable, or frankly are!  Very recently a large mountain has come into our path, and when I read this truth this morning, God encouraged my heart.  He is not blocked by mountains.  He sees above and around them and will turn this into a road to lead us into His perfect will for our lives.  Not only am I encouraged, I am excited.

Thank You, Sweet Father God, for your truth and Your guidance.  I love living this life with You!  Be blessed and glorified in & by our lives. 

I just needed this today, & I LOVE that He knew that ahead of time and directed me to His word and truth.  Thank You, Abba.

Psalm 63:7-8

Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings.  My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me.

There is nothing particular happening right now in my life that causes me to identify with these verses.  I have certainly been in places in which “there are no grapes on the vine”, and I’m quite sure there are others who have as well if not this very moment.  Thus, I’m throwing this beautiful truth out there.  Be blessed and go on the heights with our Lord!

Habakkuk 3:17-19

Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior.  The Sovereign LORD is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights. 

Go out there and live His truth.

This verse has come to my attention three times already this morning, so I’m thinking it’s the one Father God wants me to post today.  🙂  It has proven true throughout my life, I love the promise and have lived its truth.  Thank You, Father God!

Romans 8:28

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

This does not say that everything that comes into our lives will be good, it says that He will work it for our good and ultimately His glory.  This promise has carried me through many very difficult times and I’m counting on it for times to come.  May you see His blessing all around you this day.

I am finally here with the fourth branch of the tree of Life.  In earlier posts I gave the first three branches: Be Grateful, Add Value, See God’s Abundance.  The fourth branch is to be a good finder.  This is perhaps, for me, one of the more difficult branches on which to perch.  It requires me to look for something good about everybody, especially those in which it is difficult to find good things.  We all have these people in our lives, and I’m quite sure I fit this description to some.  This can be as simple as noticing an article of clothing that looks good on the person.  One of my favorite stories is from a wife who was so frustrated with her husband.  She was trying to find something good about him to keep her attitude positive, so she told us that she liked his shirt that day.  I love that honesty.  Sometimes, on a given day, the best thing you can find about a person is the shirt on his/her back.  If this is put into practice on a regular basis, I will tell you that it does get easier.  I have learned to ask Jesus to show me how to be a good finder in everybody.  It’s super easy with those who are uplifting life-givers, but dare I say, it’s crucial to do this with those who are not.  In doing this, we are giving life to those who need it most.  This is not an encouragement to make things up, but to truly find something positive about each person God brings across your path.  In looking for a verse to go along with this concept, I came across Philippians 2:3-4.  Forgive me if I’ve taken this out of context, but I felt it applied.  If we do think of others more highly than ourselves, we may just be able to bless them with life-giving words.

Philippians 2:3-4

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.  Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interest of others.

 

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