Monday, October 27, 2008

Cheer my Soul

Psalm 94:14, 17 – 19 (ESV)
For the LORD will not forsake his people; he will not abandon his heritage…
… If the LORD had not been my help, my soul would soon have lived in the land of silence.When I thought, "My foot slips," your steadfast love, O LORD, held me up.When the cares of my heart are many, your consolations cheer my soul.

One of the greatest truths we can teach our kids (and grand kids) is that God will not forsake His people. We are not alone in our challenges and battles. God’s presence in the lives of His followers is a constant source of comfort. Even when bad things happen, we can be reassured of His comfort and care. Instead of fretting we can look to the Lord as our help. Let’s live out this principle of trust in our own lives, so our kids will learn by our example. Circumstances may not cheer our soul, but as the psalmist said, “Your consolations cheer my soul.” In other words God’s comfort (which only He can give) brings joy and delight to our inner being.

Do our kids see a mom or grand mom who trusts God for help? Or do our kids see a woman who frets and worries and complains. Put your hope in God and His help and comfort in your life. This hope, this comfort is what separates us from those who do not believe. May the world see an inner peace and joy in our lives because we can say with the psalmist, “When I thought, ‘My foot slips,’ your steadfast love, O LORD, held me up. When the cares of my heart are many, your consolations cheer my soul.” My friend in Christ, God is with you and will never leave you. Look to Him.

Monday, October 20, 2008

He Cares

This past week I had the privilege of going to Amarillo, Texas to speak at a fundraiser for an adoption agency called Special Delivery. My friend Jennifer (whose words of wisdom you will find in several of my books) serves on the board and asked me to give the keynote address. It was truly an honor to celebrate the blessing of life not only for the new born baby, but also the adoptive families and the birthmother. Special Delivery Adoption Agency lovingly cares for both the birth mom and the adoptive families to ensure a smooth and joyful transition. I was blessed to meet the founder, Cindy, whose loving heart sincerely shines the love of Christ. Please visit to learn more about the blessings of adoption through this agency.

The lesson God has been teaching me this week is the fact that God dearly cares for His people. He cares about our worries, our hurts and our challenges. In Amarillo I was reminded He cares for the adoptive family, for the new born child and for the birthmother. Sunday morning back in Dallas the sermon was based on I Peter 5:6 – 8, “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”

Now I’ve mentioned this passage before in earlier blogs, but this weekend my eyes were opened to a new focus. Here are the lessons I learned:
1. God sincerely and lovingly cares for me. It is a beautiful and humble act to fall into His loving arms, giving my cares to Him.
2. Satan wants me to forget that God cares for me. Satan wants to devour me with anxiety.

You see, this past week I have been feeling rather anxious over a number of obligations in my life. I was carrying all the anxiety myself, even waking up at night consumed with worry. I Peter 5 reminded me once again to give my worries to God and trust His care for me. My friend will you do the same? What are you worried about right now? Remember God cares for you. Let’s encourage one another to turn our cares over to our loving God moment by moment, day by day.

Monday, October 13, 2008

God Weavings

It’s 6:30 in the morning and Curt and I are headed back to Dallas from Austin. It was a great trip to get away from the cares of our busy lives for just a little while. We visited a wonderful church just outside of Austin called Pedernales Bible Church. The preacher referred to God weavings several time in his sermon. A God weaving is when God puts together a situation which only He could have orchestrated. Some call it a coincidence, but as we recognize God’s work in our lives we see that God weaves these moments together.

I experienced a unique God weaving this weekend. Curt and I decided to go to a fun music festival in the precious little riverside town of Gruene, Texas. We walked through shop after shop “just looking” and enjoying the adventure. I observed a dear couple walking through some of the shops – both were blind. My thoughts raced back to trip I took this past March to Nashville where I sat next to a wonderful blind man named Brian who played the piano for a rather famous band. Brian and I had the opportunity to visit for an extended amount of time as our flight sat on the tarmac for 5 (yes five) hours to be de-iced. When the flight was over, I helped Brian through the airport to find his ride. I had made a new friend that day in Nashville.

Now here in little Gruene, Texas I’m thinking of my old friend when I grab a flier to see what bands are playing at the festival. You guessed it – Brian’s band from Nashville is playing Saturday night at the Gruene Hall. I said to Curt, ‘Wouldn’t it be amazing if I happened to see my friend from the plane here?” We both agreed it probably wouldn’t happen especially since we weren’t able to stay until the 9:00 concert.

Curt and I had a delightful day, but then it came time to hop in our car and return to our place in Austin. Just then I looked ahead of us and sure enough there was a blind man being led across the street. It was Brian! I ran up to him and asked him if he remembered a flight in March in which he sat for 5 hours with a “positive lady” named Karol. Who can forget a 5 hour wait on the tarmac? Brian was just as excited to greet me as I was to greet him. We caught up a little then parted and went our merry ways. It was a God weaving to be sure!

The Bible reminds us that the Lord orders our steps. He ordered our steps that day. In the midst of hundreds of people in a little town in Texas we met up with Brian. I don’t know the reason why. Maybe so I could encourage him, maybe so I could pray for him, maybe just as a reminder that God is at work in our lives.

Do you recognize the God weavings in your life? Some call it God-moments or God-incidence. These are opportunities to thank God for His work in our lives. Encourage your kids to recognize God’s work in their lives. Make the most of every opportunity to thank God for His beautiful weaving. These weavings form a divine tapestry that we may only understand one day when we are at home with Him

Monday, October 6, 2008

The Texas State Fair

This weekend my daughter Joy and her boyfriend Adam came home from college, so while they were here we decided to visit the state fair. I love the fair! We ate corny dogs, Belgium waffles and roasted corn. We looked at exhibits, listened to several bands and watched the fireworks. Adam even won a stuffed animal on the midway (a stuffed dog that looks like a mastiff - love it).
I must admit, the thing I enjoy most about the fair is watching the people. It’s a broad cross section of humanity all mixed together in one place, offering a rich picture of our diverse culture. Yes, the fair is all about the people and learning to appreciate the beautiful variety of God’s creation. As we adventure through life, we must always remember to continually love and appreciate the variety of people God has placed in our lives.
It’s easy to love people who think, act and look just like we do, but it takes a genuine love to open our hearts to those who do not necessarily fit in our nice little circle. The sincere love of God looks beyond outward appearances. It is abounding and gracious. I don’t know about you, but I want to have that type of love toward others.

The Bible reminds us, “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins." (I John 4:7-10)

Let’s ask God to shed His love abroad in our hearts as we pour it forth to the people around us. May we seek to continually love, not only when people treat us nicely or act just like us, but when it is difficult to love. Our love shouldn’t look like a roller coaster; up one minute when circumstances or people are nice, and down the next when people don’t act like we want them to. Thankfully, God can give us a love like His which is constant and unchanging. Open your eyes to the people God wants to love through you today.