Walking the Path with Jesus – Guest Post

Path

My husband and I went on a 7-mile hike yesterday. It was one of those where you walk to a point, then turn around and walk back. I much prefer loop trails!!

As we were walking back toward the car, I was very aware of my surroundings. I noticed many things that I had not noticed on the walk out – a fence, a crazy looking tree, and a number of hills! I thought a few times – “Are we on the right path?”

Jason said to me at one point, as we approached an intersection in the trail – “Are you sure this is the right way, it doesn’t look like the way we came?” I was sure, but I looked on my “Map my Walk” app, which shows where you are, and we were on the right path.

Whatever path we are on, we are going to come across obstacles and unfamiliar territory; we might become disoriented and confused; even feel like we are lost. On that path, we may see alternate routes that try to sway our minds into believing that they might be better. When we doubt the path we are on, we are in danger of turning another direction, and become completely lost.

When the road ahead seems uncertain, what is your response? Do you turn down the next available alternative to the path on which you are traveling? Do you trust in the way ahead? Do you take out an “app” to check where you are? We have an “app” called the Bible! It’s the Word of God that we can go to – and it shows us Jesus, who said:

 “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6 ESV

When we look to Him as our guide we can:

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 ESV

When we are unsure of the way ahead, and it does not seem clear ~ we can come to the Father and:

“Your own ears will hear him. Right behind you a voice will say, “This is the way you should go,” whether to the right or to the left.” Isaiah 30:21 NLT


I would like to thank Sarah Travis for guesting posting on the blog today. It is a joy to have her share her writing. Be sure to show your appreciation to her.

Know Him – Guest Post

bible-by-candlelight1Once again, it is Friend Friday and today Melinda Laird is sharing with us. I ask that you show her appreciation today in the comment section.


“I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.  I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you  may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints,”   Ephesians 1: 17-18 (NIV)

Know God or know about God?  Believe God or believe in God?   It is amazing how one word can make a difference in the question. The one word can make a difference in the relationship that God has called us to with Him.  In Ephesians, Paul is asking that God give us the Spirit of wisdom and revelation.  He is not asking this so that we may become more knowledgeable about God; he is asking this so that we may know God better and that we may be enlightened to what He has called us to, His glorious inheritance.

When we say that we know  about someone we are describing a general knowledge about that person.  they are a teacher at my child’s school, or they are the person I see at the grocery store,,,,,,it’s that casual relationship, we say hi, we smile.

The relationship that we know is the relationship we interact with everyday.  My daughter, I know her!  I know how she is going to respond to my questions, I know how she is going to wake up and how she goes to sleep and I know how she will respond to dinner plans, how she responds to my text,,,you get the picture.  I could say the same for my husband.  These are two people that I know,  I have a daily relationship with them.  There is very little that we do not know with each other. It is a daily walking, talking and interacting relationship.  We spend time together, always pleasant? Nope!  That’s part of knowing each other, spending time with together.

That’s the kind of relationship that Paul is calling us to have with  our Lord.  The relationship that is daily walking, talking and interacting with our Father.  This intimate relationship  brings us to a knowledge of Him that grows and fills us.  God loves us and gives the Spirit of wisdom and revelation.  As we receive and accept the gifts we are enlightened to His truth and wonderful glory.

Our faith is strengthened and expanded.  We discover that the more we know God, the more we trust Him in situations we have not experienced before and circumstances which have intimidated us in the past.  Our faith soars and our confidence in Him becomes steadfast and immovable.”                    ~ Loved by God, T.D. Jakes

Do more than know about Him, get to know HIM and ask God to enlighten your understanding.

Wrapped in His Arms,

Melinda


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Melinda Laird is a registered nurse and has been in nursing leadership for many years. She enjoys life in Oklahoma with her husband, Mike who she shares a passion for ministry. You can share in their ministry at blisscollective.org.   Melinda is writing her first book to share her story of growing into a deeper relationship with Christ through a deep trust with Him.They have a daughter who keeps them busy participating in her activities while in the fun “tween/teen” years. 

I’m Not Lazy. I Was Resting.

We have a special treat, Jill Tucker, is back with us on Friend Friday. I know that you will love what she has to share with you.


During the meeting I led recently I admitted I was tired most days lately and wasn’t sure why.  One of the well-meaning participants, who by the way wore a wonderful turquoise denim jacket and matching shoes, looked straight at me and said, “I used to think I was tired too but then I realized I’m just lazy.”
Hmm… was that for me?  Was I truly tired?  Was I just being lazy?
On my way home from the meeting I told God just how I was feeling. Of course.  I forget sometimes to tell him how thankful I am, but you can bet I tell him when I’m tired and frustrated and maybe lazy.
That’s when I realized that Nope, I’m Not Lazy. I Am Doing Too Much.  I committed to slow down in the writing/blogging/speaker areas of my life and just focus on my family for a little while.
This was the right decision, because He was about to rock my family’s world.  I could just feel it in my bones that God was about to answer a huge prayer. A prayer that kept the hubsy and me up many nights hoping, praying.  I was usually already up. I don’t require much sleep. He kept my husband up. You know what I’m saying.
And then BAM!  Miraculously, truly miraculously, the hubsy received word that she was allowed to come to live with us.
This gal.  Lilly.  My beautiful, talented, NICE NICE NICE step-daughter Lilly.  Oh God, give me a heart like Lilly’s.
So, here was another part of the miracle. She was coming SOON!  As in two weeks.  And I was still tired.  And we didn’t have much money.
I did something a little radical for me. I reached out far and wide to women from my church and friends and they came out of the holy woodwork with hands wide open to help us prepare for Lilly’s arrival–How Can I Help?
They donated clothing and all sorts of stuff for Lilly. AND for Bode so he wouldn’t feel left out.
They helped us paint. They donated furniture and clothing and money and decorations. Others sold us items for very little money.
They helped us decorate and pray and prepare.  Some of these women I didn’t even know. Matthew 7:7 is for real.  You can stand in that truth all day long, my friend.
So, after a few months of transition and laughter and settling, I am back in The Game. It’s good to be back.  It was also good to rest and completely focus on my family for a season.

In the Valley of Sheep

I’m delighted to have Jeanie Kelley back with us on Friend Friday. I know that you will love what she has to share with you.


In the first chapter of Limitless Life it discussed David and how humble he was. He depended on God. He leaned on him even in the midst of his running from Saul. I love how he had conquered his fear. He was not defined by his label.

Have I depended on God? You betcha’. Since all has transpired with Warren and this job situation I had put a label on me. Not capable. But after reading this chapter, I have discovered that I am more than capable. I am worthy, I am loved. God has never turned his back on me. I have washed the “not” away and say “I am capable.” Capable of the little things that I am doing. Those things are standing beside my husband and praying for him. Strengthening him to help him look for a job. We have not arrived yet, but I have not given up on God. God has not given up on me.

Have I arrived yet? No, I have not arrived as of yet, but I know it is coming. I am resting in Jesus’ arms and truly inspired by the little blessings that Jesus has provided. God knows what we need even when we do not ask for it.

Do I feel unnoticed and what I am doing is not important? There are times, I do feel unnoticed. Unnoticed by God and people around me. But I think that is where God needs to have me. He needs to work on me and my life. Am I doing stuff that is important? Yes I am doing a lot of important things. I am a wife and mom strengthened by God. I have learned that God is the only one who will take care of me.

How about you? Are you depending on God today and have taken the labels and thrown them away?

Keep Smiling! For an audience of One.

Forgive the Uglies

Today, I am so excited to have Jill Tucker guest posting on my blog. We met at the Proverbs 31 She Speaks Conference last July. We both had to travel to North Carolina to meet a fellow Hoosier. I am certain that you will enjoy her writing, please be sure to let her know how much you appreciate her sharing on the blog today.


I have friends who struggle with difficult people.  I struggle with difficult people.  Sometimes I’m the difficult person. I like to think of it as having a temporary case of the Uglies. That’s what Grandma Betty used to say. “She has a case of the Uglies.”
But some people. Oh my. Some people have a more permanent strain of the Uglies.
You know the kind.
They hold grudges. They won’t call you back because they feel slighted. They generally try to make you feel bad and give you the silent treatment and don’t want to make peace. They make assumptions about your actions.
The Uglies.  They make me feel anxious. Off-balance. Confused.
The hardest thing for me to do is to forgive someone who has a case of the Uglies. I tend to retreat and want to shut down emotionally and fantasize about firing back. Who am I kidding? I do fire back sometimes. Instead of forgiving. Instantly.
I need to work on that forgiveness piece. It takes a lot less energy and time. So here’s what I’m going to do next time I am infected by someone’s Uglies or have a case myself:
1. Sit down, write a note. Open the lines of communication.
2. Make the call that I need to make. If they don’t want to talk, that’s their problem.
3. Say I’m sorry when I need to.  If they don’t receive my apology, that’s their problem.
4. Do what I need to do to keep peace.  Which sometimes means Keep your mouth shut, Jill.
5. Tell them I love them no matter what (which is true, even when I’m upset).
Forgive them. It is the only thing for me to do that really makes sense, so that I can move on. Sometimes I need to forgive myself for being a schmuck. I am worth it. They are worth it. Forgive, love, move on.  Now their heart problem is between their maker and them.
Colossians 3:13 says “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.”
Sounds good to me.

Rome Needed More Lions – Guest Post

I’m delighted to have yet another incredible lady sharing on my blog with you. Her name is Kendra Burrows. We met through the She Speaks facebook group. Please welcome her to the blog.


My heart pounded, anger rising up in my chest, as I pulled over to drop my fourth grader off at the curb. Disbelief ignited a fire in me.

Rome Needed More Lions.

The bumper sticker was on an unattended car in the “no parking” zone at the elementary school drop-off. Of course, I thought, mentally confirming that someone with the need to flaunt such attitudes would flout the law as well.

Rome Needed More Lions.

The phrase wouldn’t leave me. I was shocked, but somehow not surprised. Continue reading

Trials – Guest Post

I have another wonderful lady sharing with you today, Jeanie Kelley. We served together on the Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies Prayer Warrior Team. It is a blessing to have her on the blog today.


 

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Trials come and trials go. How strong are we? I can say for myself that since September of 2012, I have walked through trials. I have been wondering and asking “Why God?” and “When God, will this transpire?”

In September of 2012 my husband lost his job of twelve years with Home Depot. So I walked into this trial not knowing what was going to happen. Were we going to lose everything we worked so hard for? How are we going to pay our bills? What about health insurance? When these things weigh on your mind, you do begin to worry about the future.

The future has been so unpredictable for us. On top of all of this, we are looking for a different car. I keep remembering that old saying, “When it rains, it pours!” For us, it was pouring bucket fulls.

I, like the rest of the world, am prone to worry. Worry does not solve the trial. I do believe worry just makes things worse. Health wise, worry and trials are just a bad thing. So how do you let go of worry? Out of all of this, I am remembering what Jesus has said in Matthew 6:25-34. Jesus said, “Do not worry.” What does this mean?

It means we, as God’s children, do not need to worry. We need to trust. Trust what Jesus has said, and to be our daily portion. We need to remember that worry is sin which the enemy loves to throw back in our faces. He can get us thinking, “how can I put this worry back up for God’s children to see?”
He can do it in subtle ways.

We have all had that scenario before. we have put something like job loss up on the altar and we tell God, “God, this is yours. You have control over it.” So simple and so easy. We take it down and play with it. The worry comes and we begin putting the “what if” questions out there. We need to rest in his promise.

How about you? How are you letting go of your trials and worries?