Friday, June 30, 2023


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!

(There will be no new blog post next week.  Use this time to reread some of the older posts.)

Saturday, June 24, 2023

Wait on the Lord

I have a little plaque in our home that I recently bought at a local craft store in my town.  It says. "Pray. wait, trust."  I often look at this plaque and think about its sentiments when I am having my morning devotions.  I  don't know about you, but for me waiting on the Lord and trusting in His perfect timing and wisdom is sometimes very difficult.  Yet there is no better place we can be than in the care of the Lord.  It is a much safer place to reside than in depending on our own puny resources.  We can accomplish nothing depending on our own resources, but even in the deepest trials we can rest in the Lord.  I wrote about waiting on the Lord in one of my chapters from my book which I wrote in 2011, a few years after my first husband's death.  The following post is  is yet another chapter from my book, Dear Caregiver Reflections for Family Caregivers.

"About a year after my husband was diagnosed with his disease, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. Here are some of the thoughts and prayers that were running through my mind after my diagnosis of breast cancer on July 18, 2007: 

'I don't understand, Lord. You have been faithful to me in numerous times of difficulty in the past. This latest trial in my life seems a bit overwhelming, however, Lord. Was not dealing with the emotional stress of my husband's disabling neurological disease enough, Lord? Did I have to receive a diagnosis of breast cancer also?'

Of one thing I was certain, however. Even though I did not always understand His ways, I knew my Lord did not make mistakes. I could count on His promises in His Holy Word, His eternal love for me, and His infinite wisdom. I could count on these things even when feeling emotionally downcast.  I could count on the fact that God's compassion for me would never fail. He, in His faithfulness, would have new blessings for me every day. One other thing of which I was certain was that I had nothing or no one else I can cling to but the Lord. He alone was able to be my hope. I needed to wait on the Lord to work out His plan in my life. (Lamentations 3:20b-26) I also believed that somehow God would make a place of refreshment and joy out of the deep valleys of my life. He was indeed the only One but the capable One to help me proceed in His strength in facing life's huge hurdles (Psalm 84:6-7).

We have the certainty of the Lord's faithfulness and love even in the harshest of circumstances. In the Old Testament book of Lamentations, the author was lamenting or mourning the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. Hence, he was feeling very discouraged and depressed. Have you ever felt like the author of Lamentations?  When we begin to feel like the author of Lamentations felt, we are beginning to focus on ourselves instead of on the Lord. The truth of the matter is that there is always the certainty of the Lord's presence, even in the worse of circumstances.  It is not necessary for our cirucmstances to change to experience the Lord's joy and peace in our hearts and lives.  We just need to take the focus off of ourselves and our problems and focus on the Lord.

When we are feeling discouraged by a difficult set of circumstances in our lives, we must remember the Lord's love for us and the Lord's awesome promises in His Holy Word. The Lord's river of mercy and love never runs dry. People, material possessions, and our own resources will often fail us. The Lord, however, will never fail us! His love and faithfulness is with us moment by moment and day by day. How precious it is to awaken each morning knowing that the Lord will be walking beside us each day, as we face the daily stresses and challenges. Wait on the Lord, dear caregiver. Waiting on the Lord means we are resting our entire trust in the Lord for time and eternity. We can trust completely in the Lord's unfailing love! Praise His name!"

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Father's Day

Sunday is Father's Day in the United States, so I am taking a bit of a break from my regular format.  I am thankful today for my Dad who showed an immense amount of patience and perseverance in his life.  He patiently endured the struggles that most farmers endure.  He always put his trust in the Lord during those moments.  I also saw his patience, perseverance, and trust in the Lord during those years of major health problems.  I still have a postcard that he sent me while he was in the hospital.  He wrote this that day, "I feel a little blue, but there is One Almighty above who loves and cares."  My Dad always read Scripture and prayed at the table as well.  His example helped me to persevere during some very difficult moments in my life like caring for my first husband, fighting breast cancer, and losing my husband to death.  His past example helps me in current struggles in my life as well.  Above is a digital picture of him that I snapped and edited from a printed pictue of him that I had in my possession.

Today I also am thankful for my first husband, Wayne, who was the father to my sons and now lives in Heaven.  His Godly example to his sons and his gentle and loving nature were wonderful examples to all who knew him.  He was a hard worker, and loved his family very much.  He also persevered until his death though some very difficult health problems.  In many ways he reminded me of my Dad.

Finally, I am thankful for Bob who became my husband four years ago this coming July.  He is a loving and concerned father to his daughters and also grandpa to his grandchildren.  He is very concerned about their welfare.  He further loves me.  

Today, dear reader, thank God for the blessing of Godly men in your life.

Friday, June 9, 2023

Things Too Wonderful for Me

The book of Job in the Old Testament of the Bible has many profound insights.  This is especially true of the last chapter, Job 42.  There is much we can glean from this book and chapter. 

Job said to God in verse one of chapter 42, "I know that You can do all things; no plan of Yours is thwarted."  Accepting God's plan in all things is sometimes challenging when going through difficult circumstances.  I found this to be true in past difficult circumstances in my life and sometimes find that true in present circumstances.  God's plan is also being carried out, however, when He provides daily blessings in my life even in the stressful and sad moments.

Job did not know what God was doing in his life when he sent a whole series of very difficult trials.  Yet in the last chapter of the book of Job, Job came to the realization that it was not his place to question God.  He said in Job 42:3, "Surely I spoke of things I did not understand, things too wonderful for me."  God does not owe us explanations for what He allows in our lives.  All we need to know is that God knows what He is doing and that He is a God who is always good.

Later on in the last chapter in Job, Job came to realize that he had developed greater intimacy with God because of his trials.  Job said in Job 42:5, "My ears had heard of You, but now my eyes have seen you."  In effect, Job was saying this, "In the past I knew things in my head about You, but now my heart knows You in an intimate way that I never experienced before.  This came about because of the trials You allowed in my life."

The same experience that Job had of growing in intimacy with God through trials can be our experience as well,  We can trust God, because He always provides for us even in times of trial.  He is a God who is always there for us in both our joys and our sorrows.

(Also if you have not already done so, check out last week's blog post on joy in all circumstances.  You will find that by clicking on this link:  )

Saturday, June 3, 2023


Joy is possible in even very difficult circumstances.  This is because joy and difficulty-and even joy and sorrow-can coeist.  Joy is also possible in the challenges and heartaches of care-giving for a loved one who has a long-term illness, in great physical and emotional pain ourselves, or in a host of other trials.  This is because joy is not dependent on circumstances.

True joy is experienced as a result of living in the presence of the Lord and through deep communication with Him.  True joy and peace are experienced when we know God is with us in those difficult situations.  It is knowing that He is keeping us, protecting us, and strengthening us in those circumstances.  Joy and peace is knowing the Lord is in control.

Some years ago I was sent the following fromula for joy and strength:  Thankfulness= joy= strength.  If we can somehow thank God in all things, knowing and trusting that He is indeed in control and loves us deeply; we can experience joy.  Joy then turns into strength to face life's challenges (Nehemiah 8:10b)

Spend time in God's Word, dear reader.  Revel in and latch on to His promises in His Word.  Spend time in prayer.  Ask for His strength and joy.  Life's trials can be so overwhelmingly difficult and emotionally challenging.  However, even in those very difficult days, dear reader, you can find joy in the Lord.  He will see you through step by step.  Though you do not know what lies ahead, He will lead you.  He will give you strength and joy.

Ecclesiastes 3 tells us that there is a time for everything, and everything is beautiful in its time.  It does not always feel that way.  I know it has not and does not always feel that way to me, but through it all the Lord had been with me.  He is with you as well.  Rest in the joy of the Lord.  That is your strength.