Friday, May 30, 2014

your crown is ready

"Blessed are those who persevere under trial, because when they have stood the test, they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him." James 1:12

First day of school, last day of school... there isn't much difference.  Everyone is happy, smiling and even a bit giddy.  The anticipation of what is to come puts most in a jolly mood.  It's usually what happens between the first and the last day we face our greatest challenges and breaking points. It's also the time we grow in faithfulness, persevering in doing what is right.

As for today, let's give thanks.  We have made it!  Another year is wrapped up.  Through all the disappointments, tests, mistakes, we have persevered and survived.  Lessons have been learned, memories made, and you have made a difference... perhaps even one for an eternity.  As the students leave today, know they take a part of you with them.  May you enJOY the sweetness of this day, as you hear the Voice of our Father whisper in your ear, "Well down, good and faithful servant, well done."

have a joy-filled day!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

who needs a break?

"Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight." 1Peter 3:3-5

Sanity... most teachers will tell you a break is a necessity during school to keep theirs, especially in these final days.  So, imagine my surprise when a teacher voluntarily gave up her break.  Was she delusional or feverish? No.  She was merely considerate.

In the library a teacher was hosting a special year-end program.  It also happened to be Ms. Pine's regular library time. But when she saw the crowd, Ms. Pine quietly returned to her room with her students.  I never saw her at the door. In the madness, we had  forgotten to address the issue with her until we got her email.  But it was not the email one would expect.  She wasn't fussing or complaining
about no break -- but explaining she came, saw and left because she didn't want to disturb the program.

We gladly found and offered her another break.  Her consideration for others, over self, surely brought a smile to God's face.  Genuine, lasting beauty... and of great worth in God's sight.  Beauty available to us all.  Let's put up the jewels, and put out a hand of kindness instead.

have a gentle-filled day!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

DO bug me

"Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear." Isaiah 65:24

Testing, collecting materials, finalizing grades, closing records, collecting lost items, cleaning rooms, finishing projects, practicing for graduation, ending old commitments, preparing for new beginnings... it's the end of the school year.  And i'm sure you can add to this daunting list.

Before you scream and do flips during the last days of school, remember Someone is waiting for you to bug Him. God is  perfectly equipped to handle days just like this.

Whatever is going on in your life, your home, your room God is already there and aware of every minute detail.  We can tell it and take it all to God... the ugly, the bad, the hard, the embarrassing, the stinky, the irritating, the ridiculous.  

How thankful i am for our God, who is swarming and battling for us even before we speak.  

Thank You, Father, for expecting and allowing me to bug You.  As Your child, You go before, with and behind us in love.  Thank You.

have a telling-filled day!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

fill in the blank

"... Mary sat at the Lord's feet listening to what He said.  But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made...

'_____, ______,' the LORD answered, 'you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. ______ has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.'" Luke 10: 39-41

Crunch time is here, and i am running on "exhaust" fumes.  I bet you are too!  Looking at the blanks above, where would your name go?  I'm leaning towards the first ones, but, i'm striving to slid down to the latter blank.

Let us take the time needed to rest in Him.  It's His greatest desire and our greatest need.

have a rest-filled day!

Monday, May 26, 2014

a Mighty Word ~ freedom

"It is for freedom that Christ has set us free."  Galatians 5:1

Freedom... it has a price.

Thank You, Jesus, for paying the price of my sins, so i can spend eternity with You.

Thank you, soldiers - past and present - for my freedom at home.

have a joy-filled day!

Friday, May 23, 2014

tell me more, tell me more

"And our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son, Jesus Christ. We write this to make our joy complete." 1 John 1:3-4

My daughter's speedy wedding, triggered questions from many.  Like, why the rush?

In the Army, Chas has been stationed in Wiesbaden, Germany for the past two years.  With her college graduation on the horizon, they were ready for a full commitment to the other.  For Anna to join him in Germany,  she had to get “Army approved and sponsored” before his last year officially began…  he had fourteen months left.  Thus the race to the altar before the deadline!  And to their delight, she received approval this week to join him by the end of June.  Just in the nick of time.

It wasn’t the wedding I dreamed about for my only daughter… but it ended up being the right one for them. After watching tons of “Say Yes to the Dress” and hours of pinning wedding-rehearsal tidbits, she scratched it all. She was more than willing to give it all up for him/them.  Must be true love.  : )  Their marriage is more about the relationship, not the event.

Our commitment to God needs to be the same... a relationship, not just an event.  Spending time with Him daily fills our life with the richest of blessings, and quenches our desire for everlasting joy and peace.  Events come and go leaving voids.  A relationship is ongoing filling voids.  Which do you prefer?

have a ful-filling day!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

a Mighty Word ~ rest

"My soul finds rest in God alone..." Psalm 62:1

The end of the school year is always hectic, but the past few weeks have been unusually busy... mostly good, but busy.  REST -- it's what i need and want most.  And i know exactly where to find it.

Thank You, Father, for being The Place i can always turn for refreshment, restoration and renewal.  You are my resting Place.

have a rest-filled day!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

must you shout? YES!

"Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth.  Worship the LORD with gladness;
come before Him with joyful songs; Know that the LORD is God.
It is He who made us, and we are His; we are His people, the sheep of His pasture.
Psalm 100:1-3

"My lips will Shout for joy when I sing praise to You -- I whom You have delivered." Psalm 71:23

For weeks my lips were sealed with a sweet secret. It took all the strength i could muster to keep my excitement from bubbling out.  Five weeks ago a special young man proposed to my daughter and the very next day they married!  The first news we shared immediately, but the latter we postponed until after her college graduation. Holding back when you want to shout is a difficult thing to do.

The telling of some good news requires waiting for the right time.  But the Good News of what Jesus has done in our life does not.  May the joy of His mercy and grace be forever on the tip of our tongue and heart.  A missed chance to shout of His Love is a missed chance to share Him with another... and that someone might be in need of His saving grace and peace.

have a sharing-filled day!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

a Mighty Word ~ together

"Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up." Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

Who do you count on?
There is strength in numbers.
There is strength in friends.

have a friend-filled day!

Monday, May 19, 2014

who really matters?

"Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”   Matthew 19:14


We are important to God, no matter how short or tall,
He love us all the same, each one and all.

Father, help me not to hinder the path to You with thorns and rocks but to clear it in love for all i meet.  Let my words by kind, my actions sincere and heart pure. I want Your Love to guide me always.  As i matter to You, may others matter to me.

have a kind-filled day!

Friday, May 16, 2014

let me see your feet

"How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!'" Isaiah 52:7

What makes feet beautiful?

It's not sparkly nail polish, a pedicure, corn removal or plastic surgery, but feet marred with knots, scratches, bunions, cuts, and bruises -- our trials and disappontments in life.  Experiencing God's goodness and faithfulness in our life is meant to be shared. The Good News is dazzling and life changing.

Take off your socks and shoes... bare your feet and soul to others.  Let your true beauty show for all to see, as we glorify our awesome God!

have a truth-filled day!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

a Mighty Word ~ faith

"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see."   Hebrews 11:1

By faith Noah built an ark...
By faith Abraham went to a place he did not know...
By faith Isaac blessed Jacob, the younger...
By faith Moses' parents hid him for three months after he was born...
By faith Rahab welcomed the spies...
By faith the walls of Jericho fell...

God has something better planned for you and me.
Because life is not fair, we need to stay faithful.
How will your faith statement read?

By faith (your name)......

have a faith-filled day!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

you are a masterpiece

"I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well." Psalm 139:14

True masterpieces hung in the kindergarteners' hallway. I stood in awe soaking up the warm, rich colors of the paintings.  After a few minutes i realized children did not create all the paintings.  On the far left, genuine Georgia O'Keeffe prints lined the wall.

On the right side of the original artwork, hung students' imitations of the same work. Despite their amateurism, each of the student's work reflected the same beauty of the original.  The paintings weren't perfect duplicates, but the likeness was evident, and it was good.

We are all God's masterpieces.  He alone created each and every one of us.  Similar at a glance, but uniquely different and destined for a specific purpose. Designed in His likeness, by Him, for Him, you are a picture of beauty.  We aren't an exact copy of Him, but the likeness is evident, and it is good.

And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

Lord, i keep praying You show up in all i do and say -- more and more.  

have a reflecting-filled day!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

a Mighty Word ~ convinced

"For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:38-39


or what can separate us from the love of God?

No one... No thing.  PERIOD.

Thank You, Father!!

have a peace-filled day!

Monday, May 12, 2014

flying solo... never

"Where can I go from Your Spirit? Where can I flee from Your Presence? If I go up to the heavens, You are there, if I make my bed in the depths, You are there." Psalm 139:7-8

As God reminded me this week, it’s not IF the storms come, but WHEN the storms comes – HE IS STILL WITH US. We will never fly alone in our trials or circumstances. It's not about us talking or being with Him, but Him being with us.  This is especially important to remember when we are exhausted and don’t have the energy, desire or ability to seek Him.  In His infinite wisdom and unending grace, God is always with and caring for His children.   

So, don’t beat yourself up.  God understands, covers and stays by us always.  Thanks be to our Savior!  We may put Him off, but HE NEVER PUTS US OFF  -- He is with us ALWAYS.

Find rest and peace in Him.  What we don’t understand, we need to believe and trust He is still in control -- and with us.

have a peace-filled day!

Friday, May 9, 2014

why we love moms

The LORD says...
"As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you..." Isaiah 66:13

The top ten reasons I love my Mom...

The students' lists were different, but alike --  I love my Mom because she:

reads to me, helps me talk, make me laugh, tells me jokes, plays with me, taught me how to write, worries about my safety, sings about how much she loves me, takes me to the park, cooks cookies.

As different as their moms were, their lists were too.  The lists varied in specific reasons of why they loved their mom. But they were alike in the fact they loved their moms from her doing and giving... and not from materialist stuff.

Comfort is a crucial need in our life. As a mother comforts her child, He comforts us. God uses a mother's love to describe His own feeling.  Caring deeply for another, we sacrifice self for their welfare.

Comfort... it is what mother's do best.  It is what God considers an essential element to our peace -- with Him and others.

Thank you, to the many mothers who spread, share and give comfort to others daily.  Whether a mother-by-blood or a mother-by-heart, you are a blessing. And God is smiling at you, His good and faithful servant... His shining witness to comfort.

For all the comfort you provide to others, Happy Mother's Day!

have a blessing-filled day!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

a Mighty Word ~ chosen

"... from the beginning God chose you, (your name), to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth." 2 Thessalonians 2:13

If for no other reason, this is reason enough to be joyous today.
Thank You, Father!

have a joy-filled day!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

it's not who you think

"I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you." Psalm 32:8

Was it her birthday? Was it the day she was elected as the first woman to the Supreme Court?  I had no idea, why students had drawn pictures of Sandra Day O'Connor, but there she was in the hallway.  Or, so i thought.

The writing  underneath the pictures provided the answer... and it wasn't what i expected.  The pictures were not of Sandra Day O'Connor, but George Washington. 

Mistakes... they are easy to make,  especially when the evidence points us in another direction.  Not everything we see, hear or experience is as it appears.  Sometimes we need to probe deeper for better clarification and wiser decisions.  And all the time we need God's guidance.

Father, when left on my own, i draw wrong conclusions and take off down the wrong path.  I need to seek direction from You in all areas of my life.  Peace of mind is possible when i mind You first.

have a seeking-filled day!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

a Mighty Word ~ living

"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching." Hebrews 10:23-25

God, i need to stop wishing my days away...
and enJOY doing and living in the moment. 
Celebrating You every moment is what life is truly all about. 

have a living-filled day!

Monday, May 5, 2014

i need to show you something...

"My child, don’t lose sight of common sense and discernment. Hang on to them, for they will refresh your soul. They are like jewels on a necklace." Proverbs 3:21-22

"Mrs. Williams, i need to show you something."
Max then pointed to a reading test on the computer and said, "I did not take this test."

I examined the test on the computer screen, verifying it was on his record. But he still insisted he did not take the test.  Usually i ask more questions, but there was a very interesting fact staring at me. The test score was 100.  Instead of accepting the perfect score, he wanted the erroneous test and perfect score removed.  Wow... he had to be telling the truth.

Honesty and integrity.  In a world full of greed, i witnessed the strength and boldness of a 10-year-old to do right.  Max thought he showed me an error -- instead he showed me an act of righteousness.

Thank You, Father, for sweet glimmers of hope in a harsh world.  Help us all to hang on to what is true and right.

have a good-filled day!

Friday, May 2, 2014

web of faith

"'For 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.'" Jeremiah 29:11

Up close, the student's art work appeared to be a creepy spider web...

But backing up, the picture changed radically.   Distance revealed a view of beauty, not fear. 

In the midst of our hardships, fear or hurt can overtake our soul, mind and heart.  But with some time and distance, we can view our situation differently.  God has a wonderful way of bringing beauty out of all circumstances... in His perfect time. 

Father, we ask for strength in trusting You when the webs of life cover us with doubt, lies and terror.  Help us to remember Your Truth --  in this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

have a rest-filled day!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

a Mighty Word ~ together

"God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect." Hebrews 11:40

With God, we will reach beyond the shining stars.  We will be the shining stars, reflecting His glory.  Thank You, Father!

have a shining-filled day!