Sunday, April 18, 2010

Day 30

I heard a sermon tonight taught by my friend, Jean Baptiste. Jean survived the Rwandan genocide of 1994, but many he loved did not. Jean knows what it is to face death and to suffer in ways I cannot begin to imagine. Tonight, he spoke with passion from deep within from Isaiah 6 about the holiness of God and how we are to worship Him for He is worthy. He reminded us that the Lord is on the throne in His Holy Temple. Being still before the King in the midst of this crazy, dark world fortifies our souls for what He has planned for us to do here for His glory. 

But the Lord is in His Holy Temple;
the Lord still rules from heaven.
He watches everyone closely, 
examining every person on earth...
the Righteous Lord loves justice.
The virtuous will see His face. (Psalm 11)

I pray that our times in the garden help us to see the Lord in all His glory. That we will not doubt His power and love. That we will rest secure in our knowledge of Him and that we will love justice as He does. May we shine for Him more and more as we cling to the One thing that matters.

Thank you for joining me for these 30 days! A few have asked if I am going to keep blogging. I will as the Lord leads. Look at this picture and hear the words of our brother David as He describes our sweet Savior...listen to how personal His walk was with His Lord...may we experience the same.

I love you Lord;
you are my strength.
The Lord is my rock, in whom I find protection.
He is my shield, the power that saves me, 
and my place of safety. (Psalm 18)

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Day 29

I'm a bit late getting this post on today. I had my 3 grandsons spend the night with me last night (3,2,1) and went to a baby shower this morning. So, I have young lives on my mind. Things have changed a lot in the baby accessory world since I had mine, but the hearts that love those babies still long for the same thing (no matter how old they are!). We want safety, protection, happiness, health, faith, purpose etc. for those we love. Those are great things to pray for, and we should keep making our requests known to our Abba. But, isn't it comforting to know, that no matter how it looks to us right now, God has ordained each day, has allowed each trial, and has created each heart for Himself...we can rest in that truth even when our own hearts are breaking. Life is full of thrills and throws all at the same time. It is never stagnant. What can become solid is the state of our souls at rest in Christ. Our solitude, our silence, our community and our service all come from a heart united with its Creator. I think this is what Peter was speaking to when God spoke through him saying:

By His diving power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life.
We have received all of this by coming to know Him,
the One who called us to Himself by means of His marvelous glory and excellence.
And because of His glory and excellence, He has given us great and precious promises.
These are the promises that enable you to share His diving nature
and escape the world's corruption caused by human desires. (1 Peter 1:3-4)

What more do we need? Be still.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Day 28

Wow, the 30 days are almost over! Not sure how many are still hanging in here with me, so if you are...welcome again. Jesus loves your presence in His. He delights in you! Isn't that amazing. He wants to honor you, build you up, encourage you, strengthen you and give you His full joy. What a Savior. Every day we live out the cross with Him. The gospel of grace isn't a one time decision, but it is a daily living in the power of that sacrifice. Thank You Jesus for the grace that sustains us everyday! We are hidden with Christ in God. What mind can conceive??? Oh, the depths of His grace. As you sit silently in His presence, let the reality of His grace soak deeply into your soul. There is nothing you can't do in Christ, no pain you can't endure, no disappointment you can't absorb and no injury you can't receive healing for, no sin too big for his forgiveness and restoration. His grace is all sufficient. Don't suffer alone, invite Him in. Let Him carry your sin and sorrow everyday, and let Him pour out His Spirit of power through you. To pray without ceasing means living in this present Reality. What an adventure!

Be joyful always; pray continually;
give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
Do not put out the Spirit's fire, do not treat prophecies with contempt. 
Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil. 
May God Himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through 
(not our work! His grace).
May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
The One who calls you is faithful and HE WILL DO IT.
(1 Thess. 5:16-24)
Have you questioned what God's will is for your life? There it is. He'll direct your path, you trust in THIS God. 

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Day 27

Lord Jesus, You prepare a table for me
in the presence of all that is against me! You give me everything I need.
Your goodness and Your amazing love follow me
Always! Everyday! Every moment!!!
And, as if that's not enough...
I will live with You now and FOREVER!

Friends, if that is not HOPE and if that does not breathe rest into your soul...what is and what does??? Only ONE thing is needed and He will never be taken from us. Praise You Abba!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Day 26

I'm going through a lot of transition in my personal and vocational life...this can lead to anxiety to say the least. My mind wants to fret about the future and worry about all the "what ifs" ahead. Life is changing all the time, isn't it? As I'm becoming more honest with who I am, how I strive outside of the Spirit and how drawn I am to my own selfish ambitions, I see my desperate need of the Good Shepherd's rod and staff to comfort and discipline me for His name's sake. I want to chart my own course and make sure all the safety nets are in place; but that is not walking by faith. I am grateful for David's example and words of comfort and truth as I pray with him...
You are my Shepherd, I have everything I need.
You make me lie down in green pastures,
You lead me beside quiet waters...YOU restore my soul.
You guide me in your paths of righteousness for Your name's sake.
Even tho I live in this sin sick broken world, I won't fear,
for You are with me.
Your rod and your staff comfort me.

Sweet Shepherd, I draw near to You this me to be in tune with Your still small Voice all day long as I trust You to lead me. I praise You from the depths of my heart! Thank You Abba.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Day 24

One of my favorite passages to dwell in is from John 17 as Jesus is praying for His followers the night of His betrayal. To think He knew what was about to happen and He denies Himself and prays for us. We truly were on His mind and in His heart from beginning to end. Meditating on this prayer gives my soul rest. Knowing that God in the flesh prays His will for me...praise You Father...let this seed take root and bear Your image as You prayed...

"I'm not asking You to take them out of the world,
but to keep them safe from the evil one.
They are not part of this world any more than I am.
Make them pure and holy by teaching them Your words of truth.
As you sent Me into the world, I am sending them into the world.
And I give myself entirely to You so they also might be
entirely yours." (John 17:15-19)

Listen to the ONE-ness of us with Jesus. He gave all of Himself to make us all His. No wonder He said we can't be in the middle. He didn't half-way die. Oh Lord, we need your grace to help us live in the reality of our new identity everyday. Thank You for Your patience. May we go into the world today clothed in You.
John 17:22 "I have given them the glory You gave me, so that they may be one, as we are---"

Monday, April 12, 2010

Day 23

Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. 
No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us,
and His love is brought
to full expression in us.
And God has given us His Spirit as proof that we live in Him and He in us.
(1 John 4:11-13)

One obvious symptom of a weary soul is inability to love others as God loves us...freely, generously, without judgment or envy...patiently, kindly, gently etc. When I neglect my time in the garden with my Shepherd, this stream of love dries up in me, and I know it. I can't love others as Jesus loves me unless and until I am completely surrendered to Him and satisfied in Him alone. Lord Jesus, may my love for others prove the life of your Spirit in me. I need You.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Day 22

I am home sick today on a day when I need to be at work for an important event I am planning. But, I can't even talk, so I can't go. My body needs rest, nourishment and to be alone; my voice needs to remain silent. Obviously, there are spiritual metaphors that work the same way, so I can't help but go there. How many times have I tried to keep pouring out, keep serving, keep going when my soul was sick and in need of rest? Did I infect others more than I helped them? 

How can you say the Lord does not see your troubles?
How can you say God refuses to hear your case?
Have you never heard or understood?
Don't you know that the Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth?
He never grows faint or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding.
He gives power to those who are tired and worn out;
He offers strength to the weak.
Even youths will become exhausted, and young men will give up.
But those who wait on the Lord will find new strength. 
They will fly high on wings like eagles. 
They will run and not grow weary. 
They will walk and not faint. 
Isaiah 40:27-31

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Day 21

They say it takes three weeks to make a new habit. We have hit the three week mark! How are you doing?Of course, this isn't about what we do on the outside, but what God's grace is doing on the inside. Going through the motions out of duty is simply hypocrisy and God hates it. Honestly giving our hearts to God, no matter what it looks like on the outside, is what counts. Listen to Jesus' clear mandate on this from Luke 11;

"Now you Pharisees cleanse the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside you 
are full of greed and wickedness. You fools!
Did not He who made the outside make the inside also?
But give as alms those things that are within, and behold, everything
is clean for you."
Only the washing of the Word can cleanse us from the inside so we honor God with all that we are. Our giving our 'alms' means we give up our greed and wicked, selfish hearts, out of love for our generous, holy Father. What's on the inside of your cup? 

Friday, April 9, 2010

Day 20

How sweet Your words taste to me;
they are sweeter than honey.
Your commandments give me understanding;
no wonder I hate every false way of life.
Your Word is a lamp to guide my feet,
and a light for my path.
I've promised it once, and I'll promise it again:
I will obey your righteous regulations. Psalm 119:103-106

It's amazing to me how 'off' I can feel; confused, frustrated, unsure, worried...really in a level of darkness, and then how quickly God's Word can lift me out of that pit as I humbly bow down and submit to His tender Voice. I waste so much time trying to 'figure things out' when what I really need is to have my path lit so I can walk in the right (righteous) way. Life is so much more about our state of mind (soul) and our responses to what we cannot control than it is about us making life work. I truly come to a place of rest when I surrender those thoughts through silence in God's presence. Allowing His Word to guide me. How sweet is that!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Day 19

"Your eye is a lamp that provides light for your body.
When your eye is good, your whole body is filled with light.
But when it is bad, your body is filled with darkness.
Make sure that the light you think you have is not actually darkness. 
If you are filled with light, with no dark corners, then your whole life will be radiant,
as though a floodlight were filling you with light." Luke 11:34-36

I don't want to comment on this teaching of Jesus as we come and learn from Him. I want you to sit still with it and listen for what He says to you. Meditate on it, don't rush. Chew it, digest it, and then post a short comment about what it is saying to you. Don't be afraid, I can't wait to hear!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Day 18

Do you ever stop and ask yourself a question like..."what would my life look like if________?" At dinner, Steve and I were talking with our engaged son and fiance about marriage. They told us that in the marriage book they are reading, the author says to never criticize your mate. Quite often I am lead by my Shepherd to Ephesians 4:29-30:

"Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who listen. And do not bring sorrow to God's Holy Spirit by the way you live. 
Remember, He has identified you as His own."

Can you imagine living in this identity? How would the power of this truth change the way I think? The way I speak? And the way I feel about those around me? What if criticism was not an option--- period? This is the deep work that takes place as we quiet ourselves in the Presence of God and allow His Spirit to transform our souls. God would not give us this instruction if He didn't intend to equip us to obey Him. Isn't that amazing? How would our marriages, our friendships, our workplaces, our churches, our families look different IF we lived out this verse in obedience to Christ? Are you brave enough, in silence, to ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you the ways is which you are grieving Him? Will you sit still and listen for the answer? Then, will you resolve to obey Him? Jesus said in so doing we will experience full joy, the very opposite of sorrow! dear Lord Jesus, help me to remember I am yours and You want me to experience Your joy and to not bring sorrow upon You. Help me Lord to live in a way that makes your spirit glad and my soul joyful.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


"Bend down, O Lord, and hear my prayer;
answer me, for I need Your help.
Protect me, for I am devoted to you.
Save me, for I serve You and trust You.
You are my God." Psalm 86

This grove reminds me of how the Lord bends down to hear us and help us. He is devoted to blessing us...all He asks is that we devote ourselves to Him and serve Him only. He is always in reach, and always hears. I need to be reminded every day or my own thoughts dominate with wrong thinking and unhealthy habits. I'm praying for you today, sweet sister, that You would call out to the One, the only One, who truly knows how to answer your cry for help. Trust Him and serve Him with me. 

Monday, April 5, 2010

Day 16

I don't know about you, but I know I 'feel' a lot more spiritual, joyful and loving at 7 in the morning than I do at 9 at night. Especially at the end of a long, hectic day. I am getting to the point where I can almost feel a craving in my soul for my daily bread, my manna from heaven, that is spent throughout the day. Just as my physical body and mind are tired at the end of the day, and need rest, so it is with my soul. I need to daily go back to my quiet moments in my garden with Jesus and allow Him to give me my daily bread, and fortify my spirit for the tests that lie ahead each day. I am realizing more and more how weak I really am, how unable I am to love others as Jesus loves. I want to be loved, fed, pampered and lazy! Dear Jesus, save me from Me!

This is what the Sovereign Lord,
the Holy One of Israel says:
"Only in returning to me 
and resting in me will you be saved.
In quietness and confidence is your strength..." (Isaiah 30:15)

Enough said. Amen.

Saturday, April 3, 2010


We are half-way through our challenge! How is it with your soul? Are you relating to Paul when He talks about how invaluable knowing Christ is? And, to be known by Him? It can be hard to take honest looks at ourselves and see the sin that lurks there...pride, envy, anxiety, greed etc., but the more we allow the Holy Spirit to reveal our true selves, the more our soil is 'weeded' out so the Good Seed can take root and bear much fruit. We are in this together. We are many branches held together by one Vine. When one of us is growing, we all prosper, when one of us is hurting, we all hurt. Pray for each other! Pray for me...I want to sincerely say with Paul:

"I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless
because of what Christ has done.
Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite
value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.
For His sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all garbage, 
so that I could gain Christ
and become one with Him." Phil. 3

Now there is a GREAT personal mission statement. Oh Lord, make it true!

Day 14

My heart is confident in You, O God; 
no wonder I can sing your praises with all my heart!
Wake up, lyre and harp!
I will thank You, Lord, among all the people.
For Your unfailing love is higher than the heavens.
Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.
Be exalted, O God, above the highest heavens.
May your glory shine over all the earth
Psalm 108

My husband took this beautiful photo this week. God's glory does shine over all the earth! It's hard to see sometimes when we get caught in the daily-ness of life and troubles. That's why sitting still before the beauty of the Lord is SO crucial. It brings confidence to our fearful hearts and peace to our troubled minds. It gives us the space to sing His praises and reflect on His unfailing love.
Even if you just have a few moments, stop, and let the truth of His Word rain down on your soul. Focus your heart and mind on the truth of Who it is that loves you so much. He also loves those you love even more than you do! May you rest in His presence today. Nothing is too much for His faithfulness to reach. Praise God, sing your praises today!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Day 13

Because of Your unfailing love, 
I can enter Your house (presence).
I will worship at Your temple with deepest awe.
Lead me in the right path for me to follow.

I'm so longing for what David believed and felt about His Shepherd. The personal, deep trust and awe He had for His Lord. He was a man after God's own heart, not because He lived perfectly, but honestly. In repentance, humility and compassion. This is what made him godly. Listen to His resolve and rest:

Let all who take refuge in You rejoice; let them sing joyful praises forever.
Spread Your protection over them,
that all who love Your name may be filled with joy.
For You bless the godly, O Lord;
You surround them with your shield of love. (Psalm 5)

As you sit in silence today breathe this picture deep into your soul. Take joy in the fact of His unfailing love. Trust Him to lead You. Meditate on the beautiful reality of God's own love being your shield.  Lord, may we all rest in Your powerful name today, knowing that you bless us as we humble ourselves before You. We praise You that Your love surrounds us and shields us. May this love cast out all our fears today as we choose to trust You. Holy Spirit, give us the self control to follow You closely today.

Day 12

At Hume Lake, I confessed to the whole room that I am ‘naturally’ not friendly. The Word explained clearly to me today why that is true! Listen to Proberbs 18
Unfriendly people care only about themselves;
they lash out at common sense.
Fools have no interest in understanding;
they only want to air their own opinions.
Ouch. There is that sharp sword! Naturally, I am a selfish, opinionated fool! It continues…
The mouths of fools are their ruin;
they trap themselves with their lips. (v.7)
But then, as usual, there is HOPE…
The name of the Lord is a strong fortress;
the godly run to Him and are safe. (v.10)

I remain in front of the mirror (James 1:22) long enough to see myself in truth; agreeing with God (confessing) that I need Him; resolving to run to Him when I am tempted to be selfish with my words or time, and then rest in the promise that as long as I keep running to Him, I am safe from my own self destruction. I know that sounds dramatic, but it is true! Only God’s transforming power can rescue me from only caring about myself. Praise God He is able! My hope is that as I review my day this evening, I will see God’s grace at work in me. How about you? 

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Day 11

I’m learning that as I consistently pour out my heart to the Lord (without telling Him how to fix it), my anxiety lessens. I am realizing that He truly does know what I need before I even ask. So, as I exchange my fears for His rest by being still, peace is becoming more consistently experienced in my soul (which means my mind, heart, emotions etc.) even though ‘stressful’ circumstances have not changed. This morning, as I was resting in the Presence of the Lord, I was drawn to Psalm 37. Listen carefully to the hope and security of these words:

“Trust in the Lord and do good. Then you will live safely
in the land and prosper.
Take delight in the Lord,
And He will give you your heart’s esires.
commit everything you do to the Lord.
Trust in Him, and He will help you.
He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn,
and the justice of your cause l will shine like the noonday sun.
Be still in the presence of the Lord,
and wait patiently for Him to act.”

I would encourage you to read it a few times, aloud even. What is your responsibility, and what is His? Remain here. This is transforming IF you apply it in obedience. God is FOR you! Rest in His goodness to you. Wait for Him to give you the desires of your heart.