“They’re splitting up.” A picture-perfect couple. The news sent shock waves.
Nobody—for one nanosecond—thought it would happen.
A romantic storybook flashed through my mind. A fairy-tale slide show portrayed on timelines, rolled through the news feed on social media.
Starry-eyed followers viewed a plethora of images labeled “in a relationship with” and “date night.” To keep the pot boiling, engagement pictures topped any Hallmark movie we’d ever seen.
A Picture-perfect Union
Enduring wedding pictures captured marital bliss—the tagline for each anniversary to come. Would this honeymoon never be over? The attractive couple knew what they wanted. A match made in heaven.
August 17, 2017 at 9:30 am | Uncategorized
Today I welcome a guest author and my sweet friend, Nan Jones. A kindred spirit, Nan often writes with a message of hope. Not just any kind of hope, expectant hope. Let her words reach deep into your heart.
By Nan Jones
Three years ago, life as I knew it fell apart.
Jeremiah understood the feeling. Most of Jerusalem lay in ruins, the temple set ablaze, the people carried captive into exile. God’s chosen people lost everything and found themselves in a hopeless situation. Life as they knew it fell apart.
Even the prophet Jeremiah struggled to hang onto hope.
But then he remembered something.
August 10, 2017 at 10:04 am | Uncategorized
Do you enjoy soul-stirring quotes?
Recently, I attended my third Proverb’s 31 Ministries speaker and writer conference, She Speaks. I met women with kindred spirits, heard inspirational talks, and held compelling conversations about ministry, writing, speaking, and Jesus.
But quotes I gleaned from the conference changed my life.
And since so much of the content blessed me, I highlight 21 of my favorite quotes in this post. l pray the Lord uses the words to speak to you.
Quotes from Chris Hodges
(Keynote message. Chris is the founding and senior pastor at Church of the Highlands. His son is married to the daughter of Lysa Terkeurst. Lysa is founder and president of Proverbs 31 Ministries.)
(1.) “Lower your expectations of people, raise your expectations of God.”
August 3, 2017 at 9:38 am | Uncategorized
I love all the ways God speaks to us through His Word, a message, a song, or perhaps in the movies.
Next week I’m sharing highlights from She Speaks, Proverbs 31 Ministries conference for writers and speakers. Because the ways God spoke to me resonated deep in my spirit. And words sure to touch your heart.
But today we go back to the movies.
Read part 1 here, Only in the Movies—and the Sovereignty of God (Part 1).
Part 2 By Dianne Barker
Are you grieving over sidetracked dreams? Has reality stolen your hope? Then read on to discover the rest of Joseph’s story and learn four ways to wait on God.
Recap: Joseph was seventeen when his jealous older brothers sold him to an Ishmaelite caravan headed to Egypt. And Potiphar, an officer of the king, bought Joseph to work in his house. Yet, noticing the Lord gave the young servant success in everything, he placed Joseph in charge of his household.
Just Like in the Movies
But Potiphar’s wife tried to seduce Joseph.
July 27, 2017 at 9:43 am | Uncategorized
Today’s post comes from a longtime friend, mentor, and author. Please welcome, Dianne Barker.
Have you ever felt as if you’ve been cast in an old James Bond movie, caught in a midnight car chase speeding toward infinite blackness?
You’re wondering…who wrote this plot and how did I get in it?
Only in the Movies
Joseph, one of my favorite Bible friends, found himself in a circumstance he didn’t see coming. His life wasn’t moving at breakneck speed—but by camel crawl. I wonder what he was thinking as the Ishmaelite caravan carried him away from home and family to a bleak unknown. Let’s review his story in Genesis 37-50.
July 20, 2017 at 10:00 am | Uncategorized
I tried to brace myself for the fall.
Oh, I remember the day well. An amusement park ride named Freefall. The wait in line gave us ample opportunity to watch and ponder the decision to follow through with the adventure.
A fear of heights gave way to assurance from college friends. I could do this. They would be with me.
Strapping in with other thrill-seekers and launching to soaring heights, the entire park visible from the top. I tried to brace myself for the fall, gripping the sidebar until my knuckles turned white.
As the sound of an electronic release bellowed behind us, the bottom fell out, dropping us with terrifying speed and force that took my breath.
Elated the ride came to an end, I unbuckled and resolved to keep my feet on the ground for the rest of the day.
Life’s Freefall Ride
When the bottom drops out of your world, are you prepared for the fall? You didn’t have a warning to strap in, brace yourself, and tightly grip something—anything. You didn’t even volunteer for the ride.
July 13, 2017 at 10:14 am | Uncategorized
In school, I sometimes struggled in math. I mastered basic arithmetic. And as an abstract thinker, I soared in Geometry. Yet theorems of Algebra threw me for a loop. I wondered if any of it applied in a practical way to life.
So for this article, let’s stick with the basics.
What’s the only way two of anything becomes one? We take one away. Right?
Two take away one equals one (2-1=1). In mathematics, it works with apples or dogs or numbers.
But Scripture sheds a bright light on the concept in marriage. “The two will become one. So they are no longer two, but one” Mark 10:8 NLV.
God’s teaching on marriage shows the answer always equals one. Unified for one purpose paints a picture of the bride of Christ, the church. Jesus taught His followers to be one as He and the Father are one. But how does this happen in marriage?
Marriage Math: 2 Become 1
July 6, 2017 at 10:03 am | Uncategorized
There’s power in story. Our story matters. It not only gives us a voice, but brings significance to our life meaning. Sharing it with others releases us from the world’s attempt to mute our voice.
Unmuting Our Voice
You see, telling our story sucker punches the devil smack dab in the gut. And that’s my favorite part. He works to stifle our voice…to keep us from narrating our storyline. Yet, God’s not only the author, but He’s also the narrator, the editor, and the publisher.
Does it mean each chapter glitters and sparkles? No. But God uses every life experience including the hurt, heartache, and moments of joy for His purpose and His glory.
Often, we try to edit and rewrite our narrative and submit it to God for approval. Or, hide our version of the manuscript in a safe place hoping life turns out to match our revisions.
June 29, 2017 at 10:54 am | Uncategorized
This is for you.
The teen girl who feels invisible. A mom surrounded by loneliness. The woman who wonders if anyone cares. The man struggling with meaning.
Those touched by hopelessness. Souls caught in the pit of despair. The lost who don’t believe they can be found.
To everyone who questions God’s existence or love.
Or, if you wonder. Is God there? Does He know? Does He see?
Little Red Riding Hood’s wolf in disguise possessed big eyes. “The better to see you with,” he said. But his eyes don’t compare to the Lord’s eyes which are vast, keen, and aware.
The God Who Sees
June 22, 2017 at 10:06 am | Uncategorized
“Aunt Karen, can we go to the buffet at Golden Corral today?”
My nephew, Parker, enjoys a buffet. So his restaurant choice for lunch after church often includes this style of dining.
Pick and Choose Buffet
We’re talking about a mouth-watering spread. The choices include meats, vegetables, side-dishes, breads, and desserts. And the food themes offer a taco bar, pasta bar, and every item you ever imagined on the salad bar.
But Parker’s food-pick is one among ten to fourteen family members who voice an opinion. We occasionally go to Pizza Hut’s buffet (not my personal favorite and limited choices). Yet, our family’s never gone to Golden Corral’s buffet for lunch on a Sunday. So, poor Parker, I hope his parents take him there on occasion.
Perhaps you enjoy a good buffet. Picking and choosing all the foods you love, leaving behind items you’d rather live without and your taste buds thank you for it.
Choices seem endless without judgement of what you pick or don’t. The unspoken motto; Come, enjoy, choose what you want, be merry and leave full.
Still, the world encourages the same slogan. After all, they try to convince us life’s one big buffet menu. Choose whatever you want, leave behind items you’d rather live without, your real friends will thank you for it.
Culture promotes the exact advertisement when it comes to God’s Holy Scripture. And sadly, some believers, church-folk, own stock in this marketing campaign. Listen, take to heart the parts you love—in agreement with—and ignore everything else.
4 Reasons the Bible’s Not a Buffet
June 15, 2017 at 9:46 am | Uncategorized