Tag Archives: hope

My Heart Is Confident- Psalm 27

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A psalm of David.

1 The Lord is my light and my salvation—

    so why should I be afraid?

The Lord is my fortress, protecting me from danger,

    so why should I tremble?

2 When evil people come to devour me,

    when my enemies and foes attack me,

    they will stumble and fall.

3 Though a mighty army surrounds me,

    my heart will not be afraid.

Even if I am attacked,

    I will remain confident.

4 The one thing I ask of the Lord—

    the thing I seek most—

is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,

    delighting in the Lord’s perfections

and meditating in his Temple.

5 For he will conceal me there when troubles come;

    he will hide me in his sanctuary.

    He will place me out of reach on a high rock.

6 Then I will hold my head high

    above my enemies who surround me.

At his sanctuary I will offer sacrifices with shouts of joy,

    singing and praising the Lord with music.

7 Hear me as I pray, O Lord.

    Be merciful and answer me!

8 My heart has heard you say, “Come and talk with me.”

    And my heart responds, “Lord, I am coming.”

9 Do not turn your back on me.

    Do not reject your servant in anger.

    You have always been my helper.

Don’t leave me now; don’t abandon me,

    O God of my salvation!

10 Even if my father and mother abandon me,

 the Lord will hold me close.

11 Teach me how to live, O Lord.

    Lead me along the right path,

    for my enemies are waiting for me.

12 Do not let me fall into their hands.

    For they accuse me of things I’ve never done;

    with every breath they threaten me with violence.

13 Yet I am confident I will see the Lord’s goodness

    while I am here in the land of the living.

14 Wait patiently for the Lord.

    Be brave and courageous.

    Yes, wait patiently for the Lord.

A few months ago (shortly before Covid 19 became a thing), I wrote the following insights from Psalm 27 into my journal. Stumbling across my words this morning, I found my heart reassured and comforted with God’s truth from the psalmist David. I just love how God encourages my heart time and time again with Scripture. May these words bring confidence to your heart in this season.

Continue reading My Heart Is Confident- Psalm 27

Navigating Change

In less than 2 weeks, our family will drive away from this house and enter another season of change. You would think that I’m used to change by now. Truthfully, I feel like my life has been a roller coaster or ups and downs every since we moved to SC. But NO. I’m still not used to change. . .nor do I necessarily like it. . .nor is it easy!

I cried myself to sleep Sunday night. I woke up sobbing Monday morning. I cried driving through town on Monday afternoon. I’m just so emotional these days! A million crazy thoughts jumble up my mind and heart. “Are we crazy?” “Can we survive a cross-country move?” “Does God have good plans ahead?”

I struggle. I pour out my tears and heart to the Lord. . . just like I have so very often these past several years. I tell Him all of my fears, frustrations, and feelings. I’ve found He is the only one who truly understands and can bring peace to my chaotic thoughts and fearful heart.

Very gently and quietly, He reminds me of His goodness and grace. He begins to flood my memories with answered prayers, with enduring promises of Scripture, and kind whispers of grace. He holds me close and assures me that “Sometimes God allows change in our lives so we can have His presence like never before.” (Kristen Strong in her book Girl Meets Change) Continue reading Navigating Change

Good Words On Grief

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Grief is a friend that I am well acquainted with and have much respect for. When Grief suddenly enters your life, you embark on this wild and crazy journey! Grief will change you in unimaginable ways and can shake your faith to the core.

This week, one of my favorite authors, Christine Hoover, interviews Kathy Litton on her podcast By Faith. Kathy’s first husband was killed in a tragic car accident 15 years ago. In this interview, Kathy honestly shares her grief journey. Her words are full of wisdom, truth, insight, and encouragement.

I found myself agreeing with her statement, “Suffering sanctifies us and sets us apart from this world.” It is so easy to become enthralled with “the now”. . .but suffering and loss have a way of drawing our focus to Heaven and our future with Christ. Heaven does become sweeter.

I encourage you, friends, to listen to this podcast and continue to walk by faith in your own grief journey. Share this podcast with a friend who is grieving. Find hope that Christ is with us in our suffering. Rejoice in the promise of Heaven!

 

This I Know

It’s been 5 years today. FIVE crazy years! In some ways, I can’t believe it’s been that long. In other ways, it seems like an eternity. I still think of her daily because my heart loved her so much.

Five years ago today, February 21, 2013, my mom made the tragic choice to end her own life.

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Gail, Evan and Lauryn

Life changed immediately for me. I was suddenly thrust into a horrible situation that began to unravel me in ways I could never have imagined. All of a sudden, I found myself on the most insane roller coaster that has seemed never-ending.

Grief has to be one of the wildest journeys known to man. The ups-and-downs of the grief journey have taken me to the lowest valleys in my life yet also to the highest peaks in knowing God’s love and grace. I have been forced to “hang on for dear life” to the truths of Scripture or else be thrown off the coaster into the depths of despair and sorrow.

I still have a hard time believing it all happened. It seems crazy and bizarre that my mom would make this choice. It feels so uncomfortable and shameful. Never in a million years would I have dreamed this would be my story today.

But it IS my story. It is the story that God knew would be mine one day. It is the story that God sovereignly planned to draw my heart to His in unexplainable and unimaginable ways. My story that would shape my heart to become more like His. My story that is helping me make different choices today with my own children, my own mental health, and my personal need for true Biblical community. Continue reading This I Know

Joy in the Heaviness

This time of year gets hard for me.  For the past five years, when my birthday rolls around in mid-November, I can begin to feel the shift. I described it a few weeks ago to my husband as this- “There’s just this deep ache within my soul that feels heavy. I’m not depressed. I’m not anxious. Yet, I feel as if there is something sitting on my chest and it’s not going away.”

I’ve learned that this deep ache is GRIEF. With the holiday season there comes a longing. . .a longing for the way things used to be. A longing for what I had hoped always would be. Continue reading Joy in the Heaviness

Love and Grace for a Grieving Heart

Just this morning I saw a FB article written by a recently widowed acquaintance. She lost her husband to cancer within this last month and has suddenly found herself on the grief road. Her grief is very real and consuming. Her days feel foggy and all out-of-sorts. She is struggling with new feelings, thoughts, and heartbreaks.

I know from my own experience that grief can suck the wind from your lungs. Grief paralyzes you. Grief makes everything 10x’s harder to do. Grief robs you of sleep. Grief steals much joy and happiness from your everyday life. Grief is just.so.very.hard!

The Lord brought to my heart and mind a few ideas for ways to extend love and grace to a grieving heart. Perhaps you know someone right now who is walking along the grief road. It may be your spouse, your child, another relative, a church member, or friend who needs your love and encouragement to press on and keep walking on this incredible challenging journey! Continue reading Love and Grace for a Grieving Heart

A Fragile Clay Jar

Oh, how I wish I still had it sitting on my kitchen table! Of all the vases that have graced my table, this beautiful red and yellow vase was my absolute favorite! The porcelain vase was delightfully shaped, vibrantly colored, and filled with a gorgeous collection of silk flowers. I loved the vase mostly because it represented my sweet mom. Mom had carefully chosen the vase for me as a birthday gift then filled it with beautiful red silk roses, brown twigs, yellow tulips, and other greenery. She was thrilled to present it to me as a token of her love and care! Little did I know at the time this vase would be the last gift from my mom before she met Jesus. After Mom’s death, I cherished this vase dearly and was reminded of her love each time I passed the kitchen table.

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Continue reading A Fragile Clay Jar

He Remains Faithful

 

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2 Timothy 2:13 “If we are faithless, he remains faithful–for he cannot deny himself.

As I read this verse this morning, my heart jumped a bit inside my chest. My eyes welled up with grateful tears. And I silently whispered a prayer of thanks to my Lord.

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God is faithful. . .even when I’m not. His very nature is faithfulness. He promises to remain true to His Word. He never changes. He is always the same–yesterday, today, and forever.

Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of remembering. Remembering His faithfulness to me in my 38 years of life. He has never failed me. He has remained faithful to me when I have run from Him. When I have broken His commandments. When I have doubted His love. When I have looked to other things for fulfillment. When I have chosen to walk in my own goodness. Continue reading He Remains Faithful

My Place of Safety

Life is hard. Overwhelmingly difficult at times. I want to give up. I want to cry. I want to run away and find a safe place.

A place of calm. A place of rest. A place of security. A place of safety.

I have found myself constantly searching for my place of safety during these last several months. (Really it’s been the past several years!) It’s been a real struggle to find joy on many days. I’m exhausted. My heart is weary. My strength seems to be sapped so easily. I’ve been discouraged. I’ve questioned God’s ways. I can’t seem to understand why my life has been full of heartache and stress…heart attacks, ministry/job changes, death of loved ones, burns, anxiety, friendship changes, and parenting struggles to name a few. During the past few weeks, I’ve been asking the Lord to teach me new truths and reveal to my heart what He wants me to understand through this tough season of life. Continue reading My Place of Safety