Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving?

Photo by Matt Searles (Flickr)
Depending on your circumstances, this may be a sad Thanksgiving for you.

Years ago, I suffered with chronic depression (resulting in multiple hospitalizations); therefore, I understand some of what you’re experiencing. Yet, I can’t know everything you’re going though because I’m not you.

But having come out of the darkness and hopelessness that depression brings, I want to share a few thoughts.

First, don’t believe the lie that no one cares, even though people often say all the wrong things and lose patience with your time table for overcoming depression. Believe me, they don’t mean to be insensitive. Even with my background, I regretfully fall short when dealing with the longevity of someone else’s depression.

However, I’d like to suggest something you’ve probably heard before, especially from your church friends. When you heard it, you probably felt (just as I used to) that they were minimizing your pain.

But given that friends and family aren’t able to provide what you need at this time (as much as they would like to), consider going to Someone Who is bigger than your depression.

Cry out to your heavenly Father – even if you’ve tried it before, more times than you can count. Tell Him about your sadness, disappointments and fears. Tell Him you’re scared that you’ll never get better and that you’ve already worn out everyone around you. And consider memorizing or meditating on this week's verse:

Hebrews 4:16 (NIV 1984)
Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. 

You can find relief in the fact that God is fully aware of your reality and will listen, for as long as you need Him to. You can’t wear Him out. Rather, He longs to tell you He loves you, even now.

Remain in His presence a long, long time. Ask for His help. Focusing on Him will help displace some of the darkness.

There is hope. You will survive depression; indeed, you will come out of it. I pray it begins now.

Would you like to discuss this further? If so leave a comment or email me (see About tab for my email address). If you are reading this from your smartphone or email, click on the title of this post and it will take you to the actual blog where you can leave a comment. Thanks!

I will send you the weekly verses, formatted to fit a standard index card. You must be subscribed to the blog, via email. Leave a comment to let me know what translation you prefer.

Also, please click on the tabs on the top of the page to receive tips on memorizing and/or meditating on the Word of God.


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Thank You, Father, For This Minute


Photo by deux-chi (Flickr)
By the time I’m finished writing this thank you letter, many more minutes will have passed. Each minute that ticks by reflects your patience, your sovereignty and your work in my life.

I will never know (unless you to choose to reveal to me when I meet you face-to-face) what tragedies you withheld for my sake in the minutes I’ve already lived. Likewise, I have no idea what the next minute will hold.

But right now, I want to thank you for every minute, including the minutes you still have planned for me that will allow me another chance to learn from my mistakes – a chance to start over. And possibly (with your help), do better the next minute by correcting and making right a poor choice, an unkind word or a sloppily done project.

Thank you, also, for each minute in which I wait for you to send another creative thought and opportunity my way. Another minute to live the life you have customized just for me.

And, Lord, I am tremendously thankful each time your mercy, love and wisdom got me through difficult and disappointing moments. Without you watching over me minute-by-minute, I’d be hopelessly lost. Hopelessly hopeless.

In other words, You are a powerful and sovereign God; yet remain a devoted Father, as well. In a word, You are more than wonderful

Thank you for all that You are to me, every minute of every day.

This is my Thanksgiving prayer. If you would like to form your own prayer of Thanksgiving, perhaps meditating (with the intent to memorize) this week’s verse will help. 1 Peter 5:7’s tender message reminds us of God’s constant involvement in our lives.

Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully. (1 Peter 5:7 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition).


Would you like to discuss this further? If so leave a comment or email me (see About tab for my email address). If you are reading this from your smartphone or email, click on the title of this post and it will take you to the actual blog where you can leave a comment. Thanks!

I will send you the weekly verses, formatted to fit a standard index card. You must be subscribed to the blog, via email. Leave a comment to let me know what translation you prefer.

Also, please click on the tabs on the top of the page to receive tips on memorizing and/or meditating on the Word of God.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Washing Dishes in Jesus’ Name

Photo by Edwc (Flickr)
“Bert, I don’t have time to clean the house. My column for The Wakulla News isn’t finished yet.”

Even though Bert’s response was sweet, I could tell he wasn’t happy. However, that line of reasoning made sense to me because the house didn’t look that bad, and what would people do without my insights? (Totally kidding with the last part of that sentence.)

Then a few days later, Sheila, one of my blog visitors, emailed me saying she was setting a goal to “respond in a cheerful voice consistently to my husband, even when I feel very tired.” Following suit, I decided to make it my goal to prioritize my husband above ministry, and do it cheerfully! Want to join me in resetting our priorities?

If we use Colossians 3:17 as our motivation, we could extend this concept to every relationship – even those at work, church and school. “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father(NASB).

This verse depicts the attitude I want to emulate: to do everything as one who is representing God Himself – with thanksgiving.

What if every word we spoke and every task we performed, we did so as if we were literally representing the ultimate Servant? I assure you, I would really have to depend on God’s presence within me to accomplish that – especially when you add the “giving thanks” part.

But could you imagine what that attitude could do for a marriage? For any relationship? Not to mention, giving a higher perspective to our tasks.

I truly believe we encounter amazing joy and peace as we pursue a higher level of service. Do you crave that kind of joy and peace? I sure do.

Each time we’re tempted to grumble when we have to clean the kitchen or scrub the toilet at home; or when we need to redo a work-related project for our boss – let’s make it our goal to do it all in Jesus’ name – with a thankful attitude.

Would you like to discuss this further? If so leave a comment or email me (see About tab for my email address). If you are reading this from your smartphone or email, click on the title of this post and it will take you to the actual blog where you can leave a comment. Thanks!

I will send you the weekly verses, formatted to fit a standard index card. You must be subscribed to the blog, via email. Leave a comment to let me know what translation you prefer.

Also, please click on the tabs on the top of the page to receive tips on memorizing and/or meditating on the Word of God.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Getting Older, With a Purpose

I need a younger look, Chuck. Someone thought I was five years older than I am.” I laughed when I said this, but I certainly wasn’t laughing on the inside.

The owner of True Blondes assured me he would fix the problem. A shorter haircut later, almost like a miracle, a younger looking me got up from the chair. At least, my husband, Bert, said I looked younger. (He wouldn’t lie, would he?)

Photo of the four sisters! 
I wish I could say I didn’t care how much my age is beginning to show. Having sisters who seem to be aging more gracefully doesn’t help. Although we’re about the same age, their chins, arms and midriffs look better than mine. Sigh.

If you read last week’s column, you’re probably wondering if someone else is writing this week’s. Don’t be confused. My ambivalence is due to my entering a new decade (a decade that has an older-sounding number).

Yet, I still want God to be my purpose for living. Don’t you? In fact, let’s ask God to use us every day for the rest of our lives. Let’s continue to declare His faithfulness, especially to this generation.

Psalm 71:17-18 (NASB) says, “O God, You have taught me from my youth, And I still declare Your wondrous deeds. And even when I am old and gray, O God, do not forsake me, Until I declare Your strength to this generation, Your power to all who are to come.”

I like this verse, a lot.

Therefore, even though I am beginning to resemble one who is old and gray (though, with True Blondes’ help, you’ll never see the gray part), I have purpose. So, from this – may I say mature – woman of God, get ready – you haven’t heard nothing yet.

O God, thank You for my life, all 60 years of it! I pray You will grant me (and everyone who reads this) more years so we can declare Your wondrous deeds, strength and power to this generation and to all who are to come. Amen!


Would you like to discuss this further? If so leave a comment or email me (see About tab for my email address). If you are reading this from your smartphone or email, click on the title of this post and it will take you to the actual blog where you can leave a comment. Thanks!

I will send you the weekly verses, formatted to fit a standard index card. You must be subscribed to the blog, via email. Leave a comment to let me know what translation you prefer.

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