Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Sometimes the right words are...

Today Renee Swope of Proverbs 31 has a devotional titled, Just the Right Words, and in it she shares a bit of my story. How words spoken from a friend encouraged me and I truly believe changed the course of my life. As I've thought about this upcoming devotion, I've spent a lot of time thinking about words...especially the right ones.

Initially as I think about the right words, my mind focuses on encouraging ones, the ones that are a joy to share, the ones I like to receive and that bless me.

As I thought, I realized the right words are not always the fun ones...honestly sometimes the right words are the hard ones. The ones where I admit I'm wrong, the ones that say, "I'm sorry," and the ones that confess my sin.

These aren't the only hard words because sometimes the right words my friends and loved ones need to hear are the ones that keep them accountable, the ones that speak the truth and maybe even hurt a bit. Just because these words are hard, that doesn't mean they are not right.

Perhaps someone you know needs just the right words today, can I challenge you to speak them. Friend share these words - whether they are the fun ones to say or the hard ones to speak, if God puts them on your heart, you can trust they are the right ones. And when they are the right ones God will use them to make a difference, maybe even a difference that changes or saves a life!

And friend if you are the one in need of just the right words today I want to encourage you to go to God's Word - He always has just the right ones!!

"Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path." Psalm 119:105

My question for the day, what right words have you heard today, which ones have you shared??

Sunday, February 5, 2012

"Are you ready..."

I typed the above line and in my mind could hear Hank Williams Jr. singing, "for some football, for a Super Bowl party!" In case you didn't know the big game is today, but chances are you do and have maybe even been getting ready for a party this afternoon.

I've put some food together and even our little Jesse man is ready for his first ever Super Bowl! He's even sporting colors of one of the teams!

But last night the title of this post was on my mind for another reason. I'd just received a call that loved ones were involved in a car accident after they'd left the hospital visiting loved ones who were sick. Thankfully it's just the vehicle that's a loss and not someone's life. I thanked God for answering specific prayers we'd prayed earlier for safety. He is good!

Though I was grateful and at peace my mind was still at work as I reflected on yet another day that didn't go as planned. It began with a loved one on life support, 6 of the 7 people in my house getting sick, a friend's mom having major surgery for a brain tumor, my dad tipping over his skid loader (my grandpa lost his life doing the same thing) and then the accident yesterday. Honestly it has been quite a week and as I thought about it all I said, "Wow, could have been much worse."

I am beyond thankful that it is not, but I know this is not a perfect world and someday the news won't be what I want to hear. As I thought about this, the opening three words to this post came to mind...I could hear God whispering, "Are you ready? And the ones you love, are they ready?"

Honestly thoughts of dying are not ones I prone to ponder, but this post keeps begging me to write it, so I will.

Personally when I ask myself this, I'm not ready when I look at things from an earthly perspective - my kids are young, they need me, their mom to raise them up; my husband and I have many years in front of us; I have dreams and desires I long to see unfold, but I know that's not what God is asking.

He's asking if I've accepted His Son, Jesus, as my Lord and Savior and yes, yes I have. Romans 10:9 says, "If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved." That I have done and that I believe, so I know when my time comes I will be saved. I am ready.

Friend how about you? Are you ready? Remember being ready isn't accomplished by going to church, being a good person or growing up in a christian home. Matthew 7:21-23 says, "Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!" God doesn't desire rituals or religion, He wants a relationship. Friend being ready is about knowing HIM!

Perhaps today, maybe even right now He is standing at the door of your heart and knocking. If you hear HIS voice and open the door, He will come in. (Rev. 3:20) Friend I encourage you to do that now! Make yourself past week is proof that we don't know what tomorrow will bring.

The Giants and the Patriots have spent two weeks preparing for this game and some of them will say they've spent their life working towards this goal, they are ready!! But when the whistle blows and the game ends, win or lose life will go on. Those athletes are preparing for a game, but today I pray you will apply this question to thoughts about your eternal home!

If you have any thoughts or questions or are in need of prayer, leave me a comment or send an email to! It would be an honor to hear from you! Praying for you now!!