Saturday, July 31, 2021

Will Not Slumber or Sleep


In my devotions recently I reread Psalm 121.  What a beautiful Psalm of assurance for the day to day struggles and for the major struggles.  Let the words of this Psalm wash over your spirit today, as I share it for this week's blog post.  Forgive me as I insert some word of commentary in parenthesis, as we go along.

"I will lift up my eyes to the hills-where does my help come from?  My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of Heaven and earth.  He will NOT let your foot slip-He who watches over you will neither slumber or sleep.  (He guards my footsteps.  He guards and keeps me and is never off guard or sleepy.)  The Lord watches over you (is your keeper)-The Lord is your shade at your right hand (is your spiritual refreshment through His presence); the sun will not harm you by day nor the moon by night (protects day and night).  The Lord will keep you (guard you) from all harm (evil)-He will watch over your life (preserve your body and soul); the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forever more."  

You and I often struggle with fear and anxiety, but the truth of the matter is that the Lord never takes His eyes off of us.  Even in the midst of life's toughest trials and struggles He is there protecting us.  He never promises us a life free from trials.  In fact, He says they will come.  He does promise to be with us in the middle of the trials, however, and to somehow in His mysterious ways use even trials for our ultimate good.  Our powerful, all-knowing, and loving God never loses sight of us or sleeps.  Therefore we can live with confident faith.  

Saturday, July 24, 2021

Fifty Years Ago and It's Blessings

As we talked about last week, God places us in different situations and circumstances for a certain period of time to accomplish His will.  It was in God's plan that Bob and I were married to Gloria and Wayne respectively before we married each other.  Our caring for our first spouses made us the people we are today and the people we can be for each other and our families today.  As I said before, I talked about this in my blog post last week which you can read by clicking on the link below; if you did not get chance to read it last week:

Fifty years ago on July 30, 1971, I became a blushing bride for the first time.  I married my first love that day.  I really only had one boyfriend before that time, and that dating relationship only lasted a few months.  Wayne and I had a good marriage, and it resulted in three sons and nine grandchildren two of whom were born after Wayne's death.  I have a picture above of grandchildren that are a result of that marriage.  (This picture ironically was taken on Bob's and my wedding day.)

The last years of that marriage were difficult because of Wayne's neurological disease, and I lost him to death in early 2011.  Those were difficult years, but once again, I praise God for the awesome things that came from that experience including my book, Dear Caregiver Reflections for Family Caregivers.  Later Bob, my new husband of two years, read my book while he was caring for his wife, and that is partly why we are together today. 

Praise God for strength and blessing in both the difficult moments and joyful moments.  He is a good and faithful God.

Saturday, July 17, 2021

Chosen For Such a Time As This

Have you ever wondered why you are at the place and position you are in your life?  The answer is that God has sovereignly placed you where you are today.  You also had choices along the way to follow or disobey God's leading.  God's plan will be accomplished with or without us, but it is amazing to watch God use insignificant weak, fearful human beings in awesome ways when they trust in His strength and guidance. 

In my church we are currently studying the book of Easter in the Old Testament of the Bible.  God used Esther in this way.  She was really a nobody who was elevated to queen.  God later used her to save His Old Testament people, the Jews, from annihilation.  When she was afraid to approach the king to accomplish this, her cousin, Mordecai said to her, "For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise form another place."  Mordecai goes on to say, "And who knows but that you have come to royal position for a time such as this."   

As I look back on my life I am amazed how God has placed me in various roles and situations for a certain time for His purposes.  I was very unqualified to be my first husband's caregiver for four and a half years.  It was painful to see him decline step by step and eventually die.  Yet God gave me the strength to do this, and I drew closer to Him in the process.  I was His chosen instrument for that time.  It was difficult navigating the role of widow for over eight years as well, but God also gave me strength, comfort, and joy during that time as well.  My love for Him further grew by leaps and bounds during that time.

Many unexpected God moments came during those years.  After my first husband's death I started a blog to encourage caregivers.  I also wrote my book, Dear Caregiver Reflections for Family Caregivers for the same reason.  During those years I had three interviews for various publications.  In a million years I would not have guessed this would happen in my life and that God would use me this way.  Ephesians 3:20 says, "Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to to His power that is at work within us."  God had placed me in a certain time and place for a time such as that.  He delights to use insignificant weak human beings, so He can better show His power and strength.

A little over two years ago I remarried.  (If you have not already read it, you can read my post of last week about that by clicking on the link here: ) The story of how that came about is also a remarkable story of God's sovereign working in my life.  Being married especially in a second marriage has put me in an entirely different place again from my life as a single widow.  But who knows but that I have not come to this position "for such a time as this?"  I am absolutely convinced that I am where God wants me to be now in my life.

God's timing in my second marriage also was perfect.  I had to have been married to Wayne first and Bob had to have been married to Gloria first.  That part of our lives with the wonderful moments and the heartbreaking moments of watching our loved ones decline and die made us the people we are today.  Also the children and grandchildren which came from those first marriages were part of God's perfect timing.  We made the right choices then, but after the tragedies of the last years we made the right choices now.  God lead us to those choices in His perfect timing.

Life on this earth is never a life of ease for a child of God.  There may even be adverse or difficult  consequences in living for Him in the place where He has placed us.  Yet in His strength we can find courage for the tasks He has given us, and we can find joy in being used by Him.     

Where are you in your life, dear reader?  God had placed you in the place you are now for "such an time as this."  Will you follow His lead and be used of Him?  Will you rest in His strength and guidance, and will you praise Him along the way through the difficult and wonderful moments?


Saturday, July 10, 2021

Second Year Anniversary

There is a verse in the Bible which speaks of beauty coming from ashes.  Those who read my blog posts know that I have found that to be true in my life and in my walk of faith.  I was my first husband's caregiver for a few years.  I eventually lost him to death.  Yet God used that difficult time in my life in awesome ways.  

Two years ago on July 13, 2019,  I remarried. God places us where we belong in our life in His perfect timing.  Next week in my blog post I will discuss that very thing.  I have also learned that marriage or any other endeavor in life is about service to others and God.  Marriage is not about perfection in the other person, but accepting each other as we are and building each other up.  Sometimes we have to work hard at that, and it does not come easily.  Further marriage is about two people finding purpose and fulfillment in the Lord and not expecting one's mate to meet our every need.  Only God can do that.   Godly marriage involves serving the Lord and finding joyful companionship, love, and even romance together.   

So as I publish this blog post this week, I am reminded once again of the verse from Isaiah 6I:3 which speaks of beauty coming from ashes.  I will end with some thoughts that I read at the end of a fictional novel I just read.  This novel featured two mature people who already had grandchildren and who also found second love.  The main character basically said that in spite of all the heartaches which she had experienced that she would not wish on anyone, "out of the ashes of heartache came something new."  She said out of all that came something wonderful, namely a second chance at love.  I will enclose a couple pictures of Bob and I at our wedding two years ago.


Saturday, July 3, 2021


July 4th is Independence Day in the United States.  It is the birthday of our country, and it represents freedom.  I am thankful for the freedom of speech and worship that I have as a United States citizen.  What is even more important, however, is my freedom in Christ that I experience as His child.

Freedom in Christ includes freedom from the penalty and power of our sins.

Freedom in Christ includes freedom from fear in spite of adverse circumstances.

Freedom in Christ is freedom from self and selfish willful ways when we are trusting in the Lord.

Freedom in Christ involves joyful service to others.

Freedom in Christ involves knowing the truth of God's Word which sets one free.

Freedom in Christ means serving the Lord.

Freedom in Christ means I can come to Him anytime with my needs.

Freedom in Christ means the ability to live in a joyful relationship with the Lord.   

Psalm 18:19 says,  "He brought me out into a spacious place; He rescued me because He delighted in me."   What a wonderful freedom we find in the Lord!  Praise Him name for that!