Discovering Who We Are

  “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created He Him; male and female created he them.” Genesis [1:27] Before I had a initial revelation of who I was, there was some days that I would look in the mirror and see some real ugliness.  I had a hard time comprehending being made in the image and likeness of God.  Why did I see ugliness when God said I was made fearfully and wonderfully? And that’s when it occurred to me. I was not looking through eyes of faith.  I had to invite God …

Complete Your Grace Assignment

Pearl #5: Complete Your Grace Assignment Yesterday’s blog issued the challenge to pray for a grace assignment.  But sometimes when God sends the assignment, our reaction is much like the look on this little guy’s face.   Our thoughts may be, “You want me to love her…you want me to extend grace to him…you’re asking me to let this one go?” In Luke [9:62] Jesus said, No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God. When we pray and ask for an assignment, we are effectively putting our …

Pray for a Grace Assignment

Pearl #4: Pray for a Grace Assignment Have you ever asked God for a job you can’t do on your own? Have you considered praying as you go into Walmart…or as you driving to your family reunion…or going to that committee meeting…on your way to work: “God give me a job I can’t do on my own. Give me an assignment that I can only complete in you and through you.” What would you be willing to do if you knew you could not fail because you and God were doing it together?  Would you ask Him for a supernatural …

Choose Not To Be Offended

  Pearl #3: Choose Not To Be Offended And then there will be those situations where context is not the problem.  The person before you has chosen to be rude, disrespectful, or right-down mean. But their behavior should not dictate how you respond.  If another person elicits a response from you that is not Christ-like, then you have demonstrated the person before you has more control over you than the Holy Spirit. Are you controlled by a 2-year-old…by a rude waitress….or by God Almighty? Proverbs [19:11] says, A man’s wisdom gives him patience; it is to his glory to overlook …

Put It All in Context

Pearl #2: Put It All in Context My husband gave me a bouquet of roses for Valentine’s Day.  One of them, as you can see in this picture, is dying and looking pretty bad.  I plucked that one out and tossed it.  I didn’t throw out all the other beautiful roses just because one in the bunch was ugly. I didn’t choose to condemn my whole bouquet because of one bad flower. But yet…do we sometimes do that in our relationships? Do we fixate on the ONE time our hubby got it wrong…instead of the 99 other times he got …

Turn Off the Search Button

Pearl #1: Turn Off the Search Button The magnifying class has become the universal symbol for searching.  Whether you are in Microsoft Word or any other computer program, you can click on the magnifying glass, enter a key word, and voila – the computer will find that one word in the midst of all the other words. Are you and I unconsciously looking for a reason to be offended and to, therefore, stop the flow of grace? Is there a person in your life that you have decided is difficult, unkind, troublesome, and so you have your magnifying glass out …

Pearls of Grace

Parable of the Unmerciful Servant: 10,000 talents vs.100 denari Matthew [18:21]-35 In this story, a king comes to a servant to settle up.  The servant owes him 10,000 talents.  The man can’t pay.  Under the law, the king has the right to sell the man’s wife and children as slaves to repay the debt.  That was the law.  But when the man fell to his knees and begged for more time, the king took pity.  He extended grace.  He did more than give more time — he cancelled the debt altogether. The same man, who had received this huge gift …

Finding Peace

Writing down my faith story changed my life. The application process for seminary required that my husband Dan and I to write down our faith stories. I struggled with that assignment, even though I had attended church all my life. Baptism. I recalled a few details of my baptism experience. I pictured myself as a scrawny, nine-year-old tomboy with a long, brown ponytail, dressed in my Camp Fire uniform, sitting in church with my best friend, Bibbie. Our mothers had lined us up on the second row at church for Camp Fire Recognition Day. At the end of the sermon, Bibbie …

Story Power

Would you like to read your great-great grandmother’s journal about her immigration to America? What about your father’s love letters to your mother from the trenches of the battlefield? Would you cherish the private diaries that your grandmother kept next to her bed, where she wrote down the intimate details of her life? I would! But often the people that we love the most do not know the stories that matter most to us. Recording history. If I don’t write down my family stories, my grandchildren may never know why we moved our family from Texas in 1980 in response to …

I Wish I Could Google God

If only I could “Google” God for answers to life’s problems. Then, I could just type a question and get a straight answer—the Truth. As a writer, I don’t always come up with the best questions to ask to achieve the right solutions. And at times, I don’t know what to pray when burdened by life challenges. So, I wish I could enter a word or phrase into my Internet search engine, trusting that God would provide the exact direction I needed. As I share in my family’s struggles with their painful issues, I don’t pretend to know how to …

WordPower

I noticed a small typo within a comment that I had posted on a friend’s blog. Instead of the word “power,” I had typed “poser.” A minor mistake? Not for a writer! And especially not in this case! My tiny error distorted the entire significance of this scripture: “But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us” (2 Cor. 4:7 NIV). One word shifted my focus and the potential attention of my readers. All I could see was my mistake. I lost sight of the message and …

Listening for God’s Voice

As I listen to the birds singing every morning, I wish I could distinguish one bird from another. I identify the honking geese as they fly over the lake. And I hear the woodpecker, as he raps for his meal. I can see the difference between a robin and a sparrow, but I can’t tell them apart by their songs. My husband Dan recognizes the voices of many birds. He knows the robin’s sweet song, and he is familiar with the squawking blue jay. He even points out the mimicking mockingbird. I’m learning a few tips from him. Recognition. I’ve …