By Date

Lenten Devotional

Monday, March 31, 2014

Matthew 25:20-21 ...21“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ It was indeed a hard two months between the two most difficult phone calls my sister ever made to me: “Mom’s cancer is back and she can’t fight it any more,” and “Mom’s not with us any more, but she’s gone on to glory peacefully.” Losing someone close to you is never easy whether it’s expected or not, and living far away makes it more difficult in some ways. The abundance of visits, cards, and gifts that she received during that time overwhelmed me and one of the most special came from my dad’s wife, Bonnie. It was a book titled Splashes of Joy, so my sister and she enjoyed an excerpt around midnight almost every night. Each time I drove to visit my mother or talked to her on the phone, not knowing whether it would be my last opportunity ...

Read the rest of entry »

Sunday, March 30, 2014

When I think of the ideal leader, my mind wanders to my maternal grandfather. Grampsie, as his five granddaughters affectionately called him, had endless patience. He adored all children and spent countless hours with us and our friends chaperoning activities such as going to the city swimming pool, sled riding in winter, teaching us about nature, ecology, sportsmanship, berries you can eat, berries that are poisonous, what leaves are poison ivy. Grampsie coached our softball and kickball teams. He was an umpire in his younger years and he taught by example how to celebrate winning and swallow losing. When his five granddaughters tussled over something, Grampsie reminded us of Luke 6:31 – Do to others as you would have them do to you. Grampsie solved a lot of conflicts with that Bible verse. Grampsie was a quiet leader with a warm smile. He had the ability to lead you down the right path without you realizing until later, sometimes years late ...

Read the rest of entry »

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Proverbs 3:5-6 5Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. The year 1983 was not a good year for me. For one reason or another I had been let go from three jobs, the last one being on December 7, 1983. I was upset, disappointed and a bit angry with God, because I didn’t deserve this. I was doing all I could, but it wasn’t working. Finally, in January I was sent to Agere (formerly Western Electric) for a job interview. I had always wanted to work there. During the interviews, they were asking people if they had filled out an application on a certain date at the bingo center, and I surmised the answer that they wanted was yes. Unfortunately, I hadn’t been there. Then I was informed that I was hired, and as the interviewer was leaving, he paused and asked the question, “Were you there?”  It would have been so easy to lie; I wanted and I needed ...

Read the rest of entry »

Friday, March 28, 2014

Jeremiah 29: 11 – 13 11“I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me and I will listen to you. 13You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” “HOPE” … such a little word that gives so much strength. Words spoken from my doctor that I can still “hear” more than a year later, “You have a large mass, it’s malignant and I fear that it’s spread.” I didn’t cry right then, I paused, looked at my doctor and asked, “What do we do now?” For me hope was there that day, and throughout my entire journey through cancer. I read past Jeremiah 29:11 to verses 12 and 13 and actively pursued Hope. I believed God was by my side always; I prayed continually; I looked for Him and I found Him….. so many times. Faced with pain and disappointment we can choose to focus on the suffering or we can choose to s ...

Read the rest of entry »

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Psalm 119:105 (RSV) Thy word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. We once vacationed on St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands, and soon after arriving at our Sapphire Beach resort, the lights suddenly went out. It was after dark and without delay a staff member led us to a candlelight buffet. While this experience was rather romantic, we soon learned that this delightful dinner surprise was actually part of a planned power outage. Just as we would have been lost without a guide leading us by his light to the buffet, there are numerous times in life when we might find ourselves spiritually lost without our Lord’s leading light. The hymn “Lead, Kindly Light” is a petition to our Lord to “Lead, kindly Light, amid th’ encircling gloom, Lead Thou me on... I loved to choose and see my path, but now lead Thou me on!” Dr. John Newman’s 1833 hymn serves as a spiritual beacon to illumine our way through life’s twists and turns, ups and downs, delight ...

Read the rest of entry »

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Proverbs 21:1 (NASB) The king’s heart is like channels of water in the hand of the Lord; He turns it wherever He wishes. (The Message) Good leadership is a channel of water controlled by God; he directs it to whatever ends he chooses. Our God longs to work on our internal character, molding us and transforming us into the likeness of Jesus, so that we can experience greater joy and peace and so we become of greater use in God’s kingdom. But we must give the Holy Spirit permission to do God’s transforming work. Read Proverbs 21:1 and put yourself in the place of the “the king” by substituting your name. Ask yourself the following questions: What would it look like if I lived as if my heart is like a river (channel of water) in the hand of the One who created all rivers (and me) and designed their paths? How might I change my plans for today? Are there: Motives that I must examine and honestly evaluate?  Activities I will avoid? Actions I w ...

Read the rest of entry »

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Psalm 145:9: The Lord is good to all, and his compassion is over all that he has made. Before I started quilting, I was invited by a friend to an overnight quilting retreat ... I had never made a whole quilt by myself, so with her help and the guidance of the quilt teachers, a quilt was made! Years later, I became a member of The Asbury Quilters, and many lessons and mistakes and quilts later, I call myself a quilter. Over the years, as Kirk and Sara Brown installed each new sanctuary banner, I began to ask myself if I might be able to quilt a church banner. I began taking photos of banners I loved, sketching ideas, but never sewing a stitch. I shyly shared my dream with Kirk one night and he asked me a simple question, “What’s stopping you?” It was a great question... and the answer was: me. So I started to sew, to pray, to sew some more, and somehow, I knew the Lord would lead me, guide my stitches. Many of my quilts and banners start off ...

Read the rest of entry »

Monday, March 24, 2014

Philippians 4:9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me or seen in me, put it into practice and the God of peace will be with you. “Where he leads me I will follow - I’ll go with him all the way.” These words define my life in Christ Jesus. My heart is open to serve him, wherever he chooses to lead me. Answering his call satisfies the soul and humbles the spirit. My greatest joy over the years has been teaching God’s word to young and old alike.  My friend Alma and I had been leading a Bible study at Phoebe Home for a few years. One day we were approached by a member of their staff. She inquired if we would be interested in organizing a Bible study for the residents of Phoebe Terrace. This facility had just been recently built and was located across the street. Our response was that we would pray about it, and give her our answer within a week. We were well aware God speaks to his people through prayer and scripture. With that ...

Read the rest of entry »

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Proverbs 19:21 Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails. Years ago, at a time when I was allowing others’ expectations to define who I was, I adopted Neibuhr’s Serenity Prayer as my mantra. I intentionally sought copies of the prayer and posted them everywhere. A short time later, I acquired a book of reflections and scripture  related to the prayer’s insightful words. It wasn’t until I read the book in its entirety that I gained a better understanding of its message. The following passages were fundamental: “You may not be able to change the world you live in or the circumstances of your life. But you can change your destiny by placing yourself, your thoughts, your opinions, your actions in God’s hands.”   “Surrendering to God’s will means that you are choosing to walk in harmony with the purposes for which you were created. By what other means could you hope to achieve your highest potential, feel ...

Read the rest of entry »

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Colossians 3:13 (NIV) Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. History records the names of Christians who suffered unfair and extremely hurtful treatment at the hands of others and yet chose to respond with the same forgiveness Jesus modeled on the cross:  Corrie ten Boom was deprived of personal dignity as well as the basic physical necessities of life by her guards in a Nazi concentration camp. She watched as her beloved sister died due to the harsh conditions there. But after being liberated, Corrie, empowered by the Holy Spirit, extended forgiveness both publicly and privately to those same guards.   Rachel Saint and Elisabeth Elliot were shocked by the murders of five young missionaries including Rachel’s younger brother, Nate, and Elisabeth’s husband, Jim. Yet several years later the women made the dangerous decision to live among the Waodani ...

Read the rest of entry »

Search Minimize