Friday Matters-September 6, 2019
Everyday Sick Day
A few times a year I take a “sick day” and I stay in my pajamas all day. I feel alone. I have issues and even though I KNOW better I don’t feel better. I put my head under my covers and wondered how long I could stay in bed. I talk to God. He reminds me of Hebrews 4:15 telling me He understands everything I’ve been through because He went through it too AND He doesn’t condemn me for our feelings.
Sometimes when we feel closed in we think God is disappointed or mad at us. But He’s not. He loves you and me and He cares about what we care about no matter how distressed we may be. He hears our hearts and He knows what we’re thinking even before we speak. Give it all to God. Tell Him your heart and receive the peace He has for you no matter what or where you’re at…everyday.
Thursday Matters-September 5, 2019
Everyday Close Your Mouth
There’s no way I can have any victory in my life when I don’t surrender everything to God…like my mouth. Defeat comes when I open my mouth and express all my thoughts and feelings without checking in with God first. I need Him to help me sort out and filter my thoughts and emotions so that when I do speak Psalm 19:14 rings true, “that the words of my mouth and the thoughts of my heart are pleasing to God and everyone else around me.” When I wait on God for His wisdom, on how and when I should speak (especially in a difficult situation), that’s when I really do experience victory in most any situation.
God love us. He’s on our side. Wait and think, pray before you speak especially if it’s something you’re emotional about. Words can tear down or build up. Most people remember the bad and it takes 10 good things to erase the negative. Let’s speak words that bless and not burn…everyday.
Wednesday Matters-September 4, 2019
Everyday Unity in Marriage
I was absent one summer, for an extended period of time, and even though I’m not a “flower person” I cried when I came home and saw this large bouquet greeting me on the kitchen table. It was special and apparently so for our teenage son Joey. He seemed to be continually asking me, “Mom, aren’t those flowers from Dad beautiful?” “Yes. Yes they are Joey.” And yes, the best thing we can do for our kids is to love our spouse.
If our children see a crack in the foundation, they often find a way to slip through. Of course we have disagreements and we have had our share of fights but it is how and where we choose to handle conflict, especially with our spouse. It’s important for our children to see unity, not division and so we often have to “agree to disagree” while privately we try and work things out. Jesus tells us that, “A house divided against itself cannot stand. When you’re marriage stands strong so does your family…everyday.
Tuesday Matters-September 3, 2019
Everyday Flowers from Husband
I still remember the “just because I care” flowers from my husband sent a few years ago. I had called my husband at his office to lament about some unresolved drama that I had so Dan told me to come to his office. I did. But… then out of nowhere a “stress arrow” hit my husband and he began speaking from his book of Lamentations. He began talking about our finances, his work load, and health stuff. It was unusual for me but I sat SILENTLY and prayed while tears ran down my cheeks.
I left the office with a hug and knew that this is life and it would be okay. An hour later a beautiful bouquet of flowers arrived and a card from my husband saying; “I love you.” At the same moment a dear friend called and said, “I was praying for you and thought you might need to talk.” That’s JUST like God, supplying what we need when we need it…everyday.
Monday Matters-September 2, 2019
Everyday Loving Christians
Ya know that song that goes; “They will know we are Christians by our love.” . We all know people who profess to be Christians, attend church, they know the rules. However we know an authentic Christian by way they live their lives, by the fruit they bear. God’s not asking us to trust someone who doesn’t take responsibility for their part in a big mess but He does command us to LOVE “that someone.”
In Mark 21:21 God says that we have the ability to move mountains by putting our faith in Him. Usually we talk ABOUT our mountains but God tells us to talk TO our mountains. Here’s the application to talk to your mountain as an authentic Christian by following Mark 11:25; “Whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive them and let it drop, and your Father will also forgive your failings and let them drop. Real Christians really love by really forgiving…everyday.
Friday Matters-August 30, 2019
Everyday God Shouts IN PAIN
Emotional pain is harder than physical pain? Can I get an “Amen?!” I mean I get physical pain from my recovery with scoliosis back surgery and having mono and flu where I never thought I’d leave the bathroom floor. However broken relationships, the loss of a loved one, and the failure of a plan or dream, well … that kind of pain is so much harder for me.
But it helps to remember God uses pain to get our attention. C.S. Lewis wrote, “God whispers to us in our pleasure, but He shouts to us in our pain.” Pain is God’s megaphone. We rarely change when we see the light. We change when we feel the heat. But why does it get so hot? I hear ya. The answer is God’s love turns-up, it warms when it all seems so cold and hopeless. He’s always aware and He always cares. Proverbs 20:30, “Sometimes it takes a painful experience to make us change our ways.” Yes, God loves you, everyday.
Thursday Matters-August 29, 2019
Everyday Keep On Going
Often our prayers are ones where we cry about all that is wrong and we list what needs fixing. Just so you know, it’s more than OK to do this. God cares about our pain and all that happens to us. But sometimes we stop praying and give up on God because He didn’t answer the prayer like we thought – our sick friend got sicker and the marriage we prayed would stay together ended in divorce. That’s hard.
I’m sorry if that’s been the outcome for you in a prayer, but please remember this; GOD WILL NEVER GIVE UP ON YOU. Nothing you do or don’t will cause Him to withdraw His love and nothing is too small or too big for Him to take care of. He loves us personally. There is something redeemable in your mess and pain right now and if you can manage to get up and serve someone else who’s having a hard time, you’ll find hope. We all need a cup of it…everyday.
Wednesday Matters-August 28, 2019
Everyday His Thoughts
Well what in the world are you up to God. I. Can’t. Even. We can’t know the mind of God. Isaiah 55:8 says; “His thoughts are nothing like our thoughts.” But we can know the heart of God. We can TRUST and hope in His promises. I know it should be obvious to us that His ways are past finding out. He wouldn't be a very big God if we could fully comprehend Him with our finite minds. Walter Wangerin wrote, "We chirp theories because we can't stand the silence." I guess that’s how it is when we try to fully understand the purposes of suffering. It’s better to admit, "We don't understand, but we believe that God loves us and, that 'our Redeemer Lives'."
Someone has suggested that in the margins beside many of our life's experiences is simply written: "to be explained later." Success for each day is not waiting for an answer to our whys but walking in the hope that He is making a way and there’s a purpose for it all…everyday.
Tuesday Matters-August 27, 2019
Everyday Change Me
Oh that place when you know if change is gonna happen it first has to happen with you. So you cry out to God, “Change me!” I found myself at night in a dark living room asking God to forgive me, to change me to be more like Him. I wanted to ask Him to fix the other person who was hurting me but I knew the real solution was my heart needed to change. God knew I felt, “It’s not fair.”
You and I often don’t often understand why a particular heartache is happening but it isn’t always for us to understand. The question for us is, “Can God be trusted?” The answer is, “He can.” His grace and comfort meets us right where we’re at. Humble yourself and swallow your pain then look at 1 Peter 5; “Humble yourselves under God and He will lift you up. Cast all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” I’m in. Are you? Let’s do this this life well with His grace…everyday.
Monday Matters-August 26, 2019
Everyday Key to Success
“A key to success is playing the hand you were dealt like it was the hand you wanted.” I had to really think if there was truth to that. Yes, I may not have wanted what was dealt but “here it is” so what am I gonna do with it? My choices; scream, cry, complain and hide or I make the best of the situation and find the lesson, and blessing in it. We can let experiences change us for the better or ruin us. Character more often is developed in crisis when we stop focusing on the hurt and search for the good where success may be hidden. During my recovery of scoliosis back surgery, 15 years ago, I was miserable yet I don’t regret what I went through. God taught me things I couldn’t have learned another way. In brokenness we can find beauty and success…everyday.