Saturday, February 27, 2021

The Next Chapter For You




This blog was started to encourage family caregivers.  I began this blog after caring for my first husband, Wayne, for four and a half years.  After many happy years together with my first husband, the last few years were difficult.  Wayne became more and more disabled due to a rare neurological disease called Multiple Systems Atrophy.  He was totally dependent on me in the end and passed on January 2, 2011.  Yet I loved him to the end.

One never forgets those whom we have loved.  There is a sense in which one always grieves their loss.  Yet through slow healing one can and must find new joy and purpose again in life.  If you are a widow, this can happen by remaining single.  A widow or widower often has time to pursue wonderful volunteer activities and services to others that she or he did not have time to do in their married life.  

It also may mean remarriage and finding love again.  Remarriage does not mean forgetting or not occasionally grieving one's first love.  How could we do that even if we tried?  Remarriage is just one way to move on to God's next chapter for us.  In the same way as one loves more than one child in one's family, so it is possible to love and marry again.  

Below is  a link you might find helpful explaining that concept.  I hope you find it a blessing as I did:


If you are a former caregiver who has lost the love of your life, take time to heal.   Yet work toward healing and joy again.  This may mean living as a single person the rest of your life.  It also could mean remarriage.  Second marriages have their own challenges, as does living as a single the rest of your life.  Yet be open to God's leading and next chapter for you.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

A Tribute to Caregivers

 "More than 65 million Americans volunteer to care for a disabled, chronically ill, or aging loved one.  They are known as 'caregivers.'"  There are also many more caregivers throughout the world.  Thank you for all that you do, dear caregiver.  Below is a link to a song which pays tribute and thanks to caregivers all over.  If you are a caregiver may you be blessed by this song.  

The song was written by Peter Rosenberger who cares for his wife Gracie.  Over 30 years ago when only seventeen years old Gracie was involved in a terrible car accident.  She suffered over 200 fractures and eventually both of her legs had to be amputated.  She still feels a significant amount of chronic pain, but her husband is her faithful caregiver.  Thank you, Peter, for all you do, and thank you all caregivers for all you do for your loved ones.  

Below the first link is yet another link to a Facebook news clip of a man's loving care for his wife in a nursing home,  I hope you will be inspired by that as well.  Thank you, Lord, for loving and faithful caregivers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SeUA0JBTBH8

https://www.facebook.com/KARK4/videos/10154028845894113


Saturday, February 13, 2021

Jesus, Our Divine Valentine

Valentine's Day is considered a day for lovers to express their love for each other with cards, and perhaps candy, flowers, or jewelry.  For some people, however, it can be a day of sadness because of past losses or current trials.

During those moments of sadness remember that the Lord loves you with an infinite love.  He in effect is your Divine Valentine.  He is sufficient.  He alone can give you all that you need.  People may fail you at times, but the Lord never will fail you.  

Below is a poem called Your Divine Valentine.  This poem became very special to me especially when I was a widow.  I still love this poem.  I especially love Jesus being referred as the Rose of Sharon in the Song of Solomon reference, because Sharon is my first name.  (Be sure to check out this verse and all the verses for that matter.)  Sharon is the name of a place and not the name of a person in the Bible, but I still love this verse.  I hope you find the poem and accompanying Bible references a blessing.    


Your Divine Valentine

A Valentine may play a love song for you, but God sings you the sweetest love song in the universe.  (Zephaniah 3:17)

A Valentine may give you flowers, but God sent you the most beautiful rose of all, Jesus.
(Song of Solomon 2:1)

A Valentine may bring you chocolate, but God provides you with something even sweeter, His Word.  (Psalm 119:103)

A Valentine may love you for a lifetime, but God loved you before you were born and will love you for all eternity,
(Jeremiah 31:3)

Saturday, February 6, 2021

Trusting and Waiting on Him




I usually use about four different devotional books in my morning devotions.  I am often amazed how they all fit together with a single message.  It is amazing how God speaks to us this way.  Today I am going to take some Scripture passages that I read the morning I penned this blog post, and just let them speak to you.  So sit back and let God's Word flow over you.  Also please excuse the paraphrasing that I also include.

In Psalm 13:1 the psalmist asks "How long, O LORD?"  Sometimes when going through overwhelming situations and circumstances it is difficult to wait on the Lord.  Yet waiting on the Lord and on His timing is necessary.  It builds up our faith in Him.  God's provision is always coming even though not always in the way we think it will come.  

When God's provision does come we will have reason to rejoice.  Psalm 13:5-6 says, "But I trust in Your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in Your salvation.  I will sing to the Lord for He has been good to me."  Another translation translates it this way, "I've thrown myself headlong into Your arms.  I'm celebrating Your rescue.  I am singing at the top of my lungs.  I am so full of answered prayers."

I Peter 5: 8-9 says, "Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that He may lift you up in due time.  Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.  Be self-controlled and alert.  Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.  Resist Him, standing firm in the faith,----And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.  To Him be the power for ever and ever.  Amen. "  Satan wants us to give into anxiety and fretting.  God want us to trust Him, His timing, and His working in our lives.

Another beautiful passage I read the morning I penned this post was Philippians 4:19.  It says, "And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.  My God-my Savior, Lord, and friend will meet all your needs.  He will supply all your needs (not necessarily all your wants, because we do not always know what is best for us.)  Knowing that God provides all our needs should give us a sense of security and make us stand in awe of His faithfulness.  His supply of our needs is limitless, because it comes from the glorious riches in Christ Jesus!  

Let's rejoice today in His provision in His perfect timing.  Let's wait with patience and trust in Him when life becomes difficult.  Let's thank Him for His goodness.    



Saturday, January 30, 2021

Never Stop Praying



Like reading God's Word, prayer is so essential to managing life's difficulties.  In fact, the Bible tells us to pray without ceasing.  What does that mean?  It is important to have special times of prayer every day, but praying without ceasing means living in a spirit of prayer all day long while engaging in our daily activities.  It means we are aware of the Lord's presence throughout the day, and it is an undercurrent which is influencing all our thoughts and actions.  Prayer is sensing and breathing the Holy Spirit's presence and breathing His life in all that we do.  

Below is a link to an article online about prayer.  I posted this same link about a year ago as well.  I thought is was appropriate to post this link again after the blog post last week about the Psalms and reading God's Word  The article dives into the subject of praying without ceasing.  Although a bit long the article is well worth reading.

Here is a quote from that article to wet your appetite for reading it:  "If prayer is merely an activity to do, then 'pray without ceasing' will sound oppressive.  But if prayer is communion with God-communion with this Father, Son, and Spirit-then we will hear the command differently; 'Enjoy God without ceasing.  Gain strength from God without ceasing.  And find that He is ever near, always faithful'"



https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/dont-ever-stop-praying?fbclid=IwAR0Iym_907EwgtcM5PfzAI381d2A3tgbRcDXnzgvhUI3-0GrGAai58-rqiU

Saturday, January 23, 2021

The Beauty of the Psalms




We are already in the last full week of January in the year 2021.  If you have not yet made reading the book of Psalms part of your devotions, I would suggest you do that very thing.  I have read the book of Psalms several times the last years-usually following a schedule of taking a whole year to read through them..

The book of Psalms begins with a exhortation to meditate on and love God's Word.  It tells us that happy and blessed is the person who does this.  The last few Psalms and many of the Psalms in between are filled with praise for the Lord.  In between Psalm one and the last Psalm, Psalm 150, is every imaginable circumstance and situation we might experience in our walk through life.  These could include trials, difficult losses, sickness, betrayals, and confusion, but also hope, joys, purpose, peace, and God's precious promises.  The Psalms depict a whole spectrum of life experiences both difficult and joyful.  They also depict God's faithfulness through every step we take in this world.

The Psalms are meant to be prayed, recited, and even sung.  Although it is an Old Testament book of the Bible, no other book of the Bible can compare to it as a basis for daily prayer.  The New Testament explains and expands on the knowledge we have of our wonderful redemption in Jesus.  Yet the book of Psalms has a unique way of processing every possible situation we may face by the truth of God.  Having said this, some of the situations the Psalmists talk about, lament, or pray about have a historical setting.  Hence, it may be best to have a study Bible explaining the historical context, or use a good devotional on the Psalms alongside your personal reading of the Psalms.  

When we walk by faith, depend on God through difficult and joyful experiences, and use His Word as our guide; we end up praising Him.  Psalm 150:6 says, "Let everything that has breath praise the Lord."  This is because we see how God has blessed us in good times and has helped us grow in our character and in  becoming the people He wants us to be in difficult times.  So in good times or difficult times, God deserves to be praised.  He knows what He is doing in allowing the things He allows,  and He is always faithful in what He does.

The Psalms and all of God's Word helps us to see this.  It reminds us of God's love, faithfulness, and wisdom.  Meditating on God's Word is our Anchor in time of need, and is the secret to a sweet relationship with Him.  It is like spiritual living water that nourishes and never dries up.

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Things Too Wonderful for me


Psalm 131 is a beautiful Psalm in the Bible which speaks of humbly trusting in the Lord.  So often we try to figure out and manage life and it's struggles on our own.  We employ and seek out our own devices and solutions to try to solve life's problems and trials.  If we do pray to God for answers, we sometimes ask God to solve our problems and heartaches the way we think is best.

Instead, in Psalm 131 the psalmist says, "I do not concern myself with great matters or things too wonderful for me."  We can't understand God's ways.  We can not fully understand what He has in mind in the issues and trials of life, but He is so much wiser than us.  We can rest in His wisdom.  The psalmist goes on to say, "But I have stilled and quieted my soul."

The psalmist has stilled and quieted his soul "like a weaned child with His mother."  He is content to just be in and enjoy the presence of the Lord.  An unweaned child wants something from the mother.  The child wants the mother's milk.  The weaned child only wants and desires to be in the presence and company of his mom.  He is not looking for what the mother can give him, but he just finds solace and comfort and joy in who the mom is as a person.

So it is with God.  We can find joy in His presence alone and in who He is as our loving and faithful God.  Psalm 131 tell us, "We can find "hope in the Lord both now and forevermore."