Matthew 25:34-36 Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.

About 10 years ago, my husband was building my dream barn. Yes, you read that correctly…my dream barn. We planned every detail over about a year’s period of time. When we broke ground on that barn, I was extremely excited. When we were close to completing the barn that I had already filled with critters, my husband saw an ad for some stall doors. He decided to go look at the doors, and that decision turned out to be one that would improve our meal time from that day forward. Let me explain. The man that was selling the stall doors also had a huge mahogany board that was 38 inches wide, 12 feet long, and 3 inches thick. He asked Jeff if he wanted to buy that board. Jeff at first said no. We were nearing completion of the barn, and had been paying for it as we went. We didn’t need that board, and we didn’t really need to spend any extra money on a board. They talked for a while, and the man explained that he wanted the board to be made into a table. He said someone had previously tried to buy it, but the person wanted to cut it up to make violins. He didn’t want it to be cut up into tiny pieces. He wanted it to be made into a huge table. When he learned that we have a big family, he reduced the price of the board to $700. Jeff couldn’t pass it up. He made a call that very night to a woodworker and scheduled an appointment. In my minds eye, I knew exactly what I wanted, and a few months later we had a 10 foot long solid mahogany table with ten hand crafter chairs. It was rustic, beautiful, and it completed our home.

Most days, that table sits empty as we only have three of us living at home now, my husband, myself, and our youngest. But thank God, it doesn’t stay empty for too long at a time. Today, it will be completely full as we enjoy Christmas dinner with our family. We completely fill up the table and all ten chairs when our kids, their spouses, our grandson, and our parents come over. We frequently even overflow to the kitchen island. That table is the heart of our home. It is where friends and family gather, and it is where many major decisions have been made. We discuss world events, our daily hurdles and blessings, and important conversations have taken place at that table. Exciting announcements have been proclaimed while sitting at that table. We have laughed and shed tears while gathered there. And that table is where I sit with my coffee in hand first thing every morning to read my Bible and write a devotional. Yes, my friends, that old slab of mahogany turned out to be a true blessing. With that solid old table, we will be able to continue to invite many to come to the table at our home.

There’s another table that we have all been invited to, and that one is much more special that our well loved kitchen table. We have all been invited to dine with the King of all glory. But while we await that glorious day, we have the blessed opportunity to share our table. As children of the King, we are given the ability to show the love of Christ each and every day. We can do this by feeding the hungry, loving the unlovable, and inviting others to come to the table. We can seize those opportunities to really share and show the love of Christ, share the gospel, and invite others to come to the table of the King. Whether your table is big or small, wooden or glass, take every opportunity to invite others to come to the table. Open your heart and your home when possible, and use every chance you get to share Christ so that everyone comes to the table of our Lord and Savior! Won’t you come to the table of the King and celebrate His birthday today at His house! Get prettied up and get to church this morning!

Merry Christmas!


Isaiah 51:6 Look up to the skies above, and gaze down on the earth below. For the skies will disappear like smoke, and the earth will wear out like a piece of clothing. The people of the earth will die like flies, but my salvation lasts forever. My righteous rule will never end!

I’m enjoying a few days of PTO this week. It turned cold here in south Mississippi. It’s deer season, and that means that it is time to get out into the woods and enjoy the beauty of God’s creation. That also means it’s time to finally slow down a bit, and this girl needs a slow down period! This is a pretty busy time of the year for everyone, and if we aren’t careful, we may start feeling worn out.

Yesterday, as I was finishing up some last minute details for my job on my laptop, I noticed that several of the letters are worn off. I can barely make out the letters E,S, and C. I’ve only had this laptop a little over a year, but during that time, I have put it to great use. This particular laptop is used for my job only, and in just over a year, I’ve really started wearing it out. Why is that? I suppose it is because I used that laptop eight hours a day five days a week. I use it to chart my patient visits, to handle emails, to communicate with colleagues, and for virtual meetings. I use it all day every day. So, one could easily tell just by looking at the keyboard that I spend a lot of time on that silly laptop.

A large part of my time is spent working for my employer, and that is definitely important. God blessed me with the brains, talent, and compassion to be a nurse practitioner. And He charged me with doing the best job that I can. Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people. Colossians 3:23. But in reality, does a worn out laptop reveal that I’m a good nurse practitioner? Nope! This is evidenced in my performance. My skills are revealed in my timely completion of charts, meeting metrics, but most importantly, in how well I care for my patients.

I began pondering on old worn out things and exactly what that indicates. We all have that favorite shirt. It has been laundered more often than others because we love it, and therefore it’s probably worn out from repetitive use. What about that favorite pair of comfy shoes? Yes, they are wearing out quickly. But what about our Bibles, friend? Are they worn out?

I have several Bibles, but the one I use most often is made of some kind of synthetic leather like material. The cover is stiff and not very pliable. It hardly looks worn out at all. However, when I open the cover, I see that the binding is pulling away from the cover. The pages will soon begin to turn loose. As I fan the pages, I see lots of notes in the margins, underlined scripture, and asterisks. I see a well worn Bible, but I still must ask myself, does this worn out Bible reveal that I’m a good Christian? Nope! Unfortunately, I can know scripture back and forth, take notes in my Bible all day long, but if I never put foot to pavement, it does not benefit me or anyone else.

God gave us His Word, the instruction manual for life, the Holy Bible. He desires for us to read and study His Word, but reading and studying is not enough. Even Atheists know what the Bible says. We have to wear it out, friends. We can not merely study the Word. We must wear it on our minds and in our hearts. We must live it out. We must share it with others. We must have a personal relationship with Christ. It is our faith in Christ that makes us Christians.

Things of this world are temporal. Our stuff will get worn out. It’ll fade away. However, salvation is eternal. God’s love for us will never wear out. We may grow weary and worn, but Christ refreshes, rejuvenates, and renews our worn out bodies and minds daily if we rely fully on Him.


Hebrews 13:20-21 Now may the God of peace— who brought up from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great Shepherd of the sheep, and ratified an eternal covenant with his blood– may he equip you with all you need for doing his will. May he produce in you, through the power of Jesus Christ, every good thing that is pleasing to him. All glory to him forever and ever! Amen.

My blog has remained quiet for the past few weeks. There hasn’t been a peep out of me. Oh, I’ve wanted to sit down and pour out my heart sharing my deepest thoughts, but I’ve been otherwise engaged. I’ve been hard at work completing another project.

I’m not really a procrastinator by nature, but I have procrastinated on this project. It is something I have wanted to complete for quite a while, but I knew that it was going to take an exorbitant about of time. Spare time, my friends, is something I seem to have very little of. So….I procrastinated. BUT when I finally made myself start on the project, there was no stopping. That’s how I roll. If I start on something, I can’t stop until the task at hand is completed.

What was this time consuming project? I’m happy to announce that I have completed my fourth book. Over the past year or so, I’ve written daily devotionals. The words were God inspired, and I give Him all the glory. Each day before I wrote, I prayed, “Give me a word, Lord,” and He graciously did. A topical word would come to mind, I would research the word, dig into scripture, and from that, a devotional poured out. After completing 365 days, I knew that a devotional book was the next step. I felt this within the core of my being. I knew that it was what i was supposed to do next, but your girl was busy! God put it on my heart, and although I procrastinated and made a lot of excuses, my heart could NOT rest. For you see, if God puts something on your heart, it is going to stay on your heart until you give in and follow through. There will be no rest. The Holy Spirit will continue to tug at your heart strings, and the urgency will remain in your heart and on your mind.

So, I finally pulled out the laptop and began. Over the past few weeks, I’ve spent every waking minute, outside of my job and home chores, copying, pasting, editing, printing, re-editing, and finally, submitting my manuscript for “Calm in the Chaos, More Inspirations from the Funny Farm”. I grew weary. There were moments of frustration. I almost gave up. I thought that maybe I couldn’t complete a 365 day devotional book, but then I remembered that the devil is a liar! God placed this task on my heart, and therefore, I knew I had to finish.

Why am I sharing this? Because I think that possibly we can all relate. You may not be trying to write a book for the glory of God, but I am certain that there is a project that God has placed on your heart. There is a recurring idea and urge to do something. Our human nature allows the busyness of life consume us. Life frequently gets in the way of our time with Jesus. Yet, Jesus ia always more important. The heart tug we feel may be a desire to spend more time in His Word. It may be a need to start journaling. Perhaps, you feel a calling to do mission work. Maybe, there is a strong inclination to share the gospel. Whatever the desire is that God has placed on heart, must not procrastinate. Maybe, just maybe, you keep getting an overwhelming feeling that you need to merely walk next door and tell your neighbor about Jesus. Those urges and feelings are heart whispers from the Holy Spirit, and they can not be satisfied or quenched until we act.

What task has been on your heart lately? The good Lord is calling. You may not feel equipped, but have no fear. God doesn’t call the equipped. He equips the called. He equipped this old gal from Mississippi, and it is only through Him that I can accomplish any of the things I accomplish. If He is calling you, all you must do is answer the call. He will handle the details!


John 15:12-15 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.

I read this quote from Ann Landers, “Love is friendship that has caught fire. It is quiet understanding, mutual confidence, sharing and forgiving. It is loyalty through good and bad times. It settles for less than perfection and makes allowances for human weaknesses.” Y’all remember Ann, don’t you? Her birth name was Esther Pauline “Eppie” Lederer, but she was best know by her pen name Ann Landers. She was an American advice columnist whose column ran for more than 47 years and had a reported readership of 90 million people. She gave some pretty good advice over the years, and still everywhere we look, we can find some kind of advice and someone willing to share their advice with us. It may not be good advice, but it’s out there…free for the taking. But this little quote about love has been repeated over and again. It has been read as part of marriage vows. It has been etched in the minds of many, and we have to admit, that it’s a pretty catchy phrase, “love is friendship that has caught fire.”

Love is a word of action. It’s one of the most difficult terms in the world to truly define, and it’s much easier to show love than to define the terminology. If I were asked to define the word love, I would simply have to say, “Jesus”. He is the epidemy of the word love. I don’t know if Ann meant to describe a relationship with Jesus when she wrote this statement, but I think she did a pretty good job here. Consider the words for a moment. “It is a quiet understanding.” We will never understand Jesus fully, but it is in our quiet times with Him that we gain truth and knowledge and understanding of our Lord and Savior. We must dedicate a quiet time each day to devote to Christ, and during that time, He will teach us, grow us, and show us things that we need to know, ways we need to change, and the will that He has for each of us. When we retreat to our quiet place and invite the Lord into that place, we connect with Him on that personal level, and this is where miracles begin to happen.

Love for Jesus gives a mutual confidence. When we accept Jesus as our Savior, we become His, and no one can snatch us out of the hands of God. (John 10:28) Jesus has confidence in the fact that we are His, and we have confidence knowing that He is our Savior! We are promised eternity with Him, and the thought of that should give us confidence to walk through this life with our heads held high. We are loved by a God who sent His Son to die for our sins so that we can have everlasting life with Him. If that isn’t love, I don’t know what is! And we can have confidence that we have an eternal home in heaven. And because of this confidence, we can “come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.” (Hebrews 4:16)

Love is about sharing and forgiving. Peeps, I am very thankful that we can share everything with our Lord. Prayer is a wonderful gift from God. He gave us a means to have open communication with Him way before the idea of a smart phone was every created. We can enter His presence any time, day or night, 24/7, and we can share everything in our lives with Him. He desires this kind of relationship. He wants us to share our hearts and to be the Lord of our hearts. And that forgiveness part, y’all, isn’t that the best? There are so many times that we goof up, mess up, fall down, and get off of track, but our loving Father is always there to pick us back up. He forgives the little sins and the great big sins, and then He wipes the slate clean. And He even gave us with the Holy Spirit to convict us and guide us, and show us when we are getting off track. He’s such a good, good God!

Love is about loyalty through good times and bad times. I venture to say that loyalty is a quality that is sorely lacking in this world, but not when it comes to Christ. He is there with us through all of the joys in life…the new births, the weddings, the new job, the newly constructed house. He celebrates with us, and all of the angels rejoice when we accept Christ as our Savior. Oh yes, He is loyal through the good times. But what about those bad times? Where is He then? Oh, my friend, He’s still there. He is there with us through the losses, the deaths, the break ups, and all of life’s battles. Those are the times He is standing there with His arms open just waiting to give us a hug, asking us to cling to Him, and lean on Him with all that we are. It is in those times that we feel His strength and presence when peace envelopes our souls that we can not even venture to explain.

“Love settles for less than perfection and makes allowances for human weakness.” Praise Jesus that He settles for less than perfection and makes allowances for human weakness. Jesus is the only perfect man that walked this earth. We strive for perfection, we try to walk like Him, but we are mere humans. We are not perfect, but guess what? He loves us totally and completely flaws and all. He knows we aren’t perfect, and he allows for our weaknesses. God even designed the greatest means of redemption. We are made right through Christ! “We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are. For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, in his grace, freely makes us right in his sight. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins.” (Romans 3:22-24) And 2 Corinthians 12:9 assures us, “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” His power is made perfect in our weakness! Praise God!

Can’t you see how much Jesus loves us? The thought of it overwhelms me. His love for us is definitely like a friendship that has caught fire, but the question we need to ask ourselves this morning is, “is our love for Jesus like a friendship that has caught fire?” Has our love for Him been ignited? Are we clinging to Him, sharing with Him, humbly asking forgiveness, and striving for perfection in Christ? My friends, this relationship, the relationship between Christ and us, is the absolute most important relationship in our lives. Why do we put it on the back burner and let it simmer? We need to ignite a fire within each one of us and really get to know our Lord! Ignite the fire within you today!



Isaiah 41:13 For I hold you by your right hand—I, the Lord your God. And I say to you, “Don’t be afraid. I am here to help you.”

Isaiah 46:4 I will be your God throughout your lifetime—until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you.

Isaiah 41:10 Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.

If you read through the book of Isaiah, you will find some very good words of wisdom in this book and many great reassurances. I praise God for His Word. I am so thankful that He provided His Holy Word to give us guidance, strength, and peace. We have God that is bigger than all our troubles and problems, and His Word reveals that to us over and over again.

We all have problems. We may not admit them, but if we are living and breathing, we probably have some sort of problem or concern. The problem with our problems is that we try work them out on our own. I’m a very visual person. I love to take pictures. I take pictures of anything and everything, and when I’m working things out in my mind, I do so with pictures or images. Sometimes we have to picture things in order to get a clear image of the situation at hand.

When we picture all our problems in our mind, we see all the different problems in the picture. We may see financial problems, relationship issues, concerns about our children, health troubles, job stressors, and the list goes on. We see all of these troubles in the picture, and then we see ourselves sitting in the middle of the picture surrounded by all of these problems. The problem with this is that we are seeing it all wrong! When we look at a picture of all those problems, we shouldn’t see ourselves sitting in the midst of the trouble, but rather we should see GOD in the picture with our problems. We have to take ourselves out everything, and we need to give everything to God.

Some might say, if God is handling all of my problems, why do I have so many? Well, my friend, sometimes we bring those problems on ourselves. We aren’t perfect. We goof up every now and then even when we are trying to live a good and righteous life. God can and will handle any and all problems that we are enduring, but we have to trust Him through the process. Psalm 119:71-72 tells us, “My suffering was good for me, for it taught me to pay attention to your decrees. Your instructions are more valuable to me than millions in gold and silver.” What? Did he say that suffering is good for me? Yea, buddy! When we go through the struggles in life, we learn from the difficulties and we learn to lean on our Lord and Savior. We are going to have problems in this life. Life is a problem solving adventure. We may not choose the problem, but we get to choose how the problem affects us. The problem will either develop us or defeat us. We get to make the choice.

No matter what type of difficulty you are going through, you can rest assured that God will use the problem for your benefit. Sometimes He uses the situation to direct you. Maybe He needs to get you to start moving in a certain direction, and He uses a problem to ignite you and get you going. Maybe, just maybe, God has placed something on your heart that He wants you to do, but you won’t budge. Maybe He uses a problem to get you moving in the direction in which He desires for you to go.

Sometimes He uses a problem to correct you. Maybe you are going down a path of destruction, and God uses a problem to teach you a lesson. Ouch! We don’t like the sounds of that one, but there is truth there. Just as a parent disciplines a child who is doing wrong, God is going to discipline His kids. He’s going to get our attention, and a lesson will be learned. Just as we love our children too much to allow them to do things that will harm them, God loves us too much to ignore us when we are doing wrong.

Maybe God is using the problem to inspect you. Did you ever think of that? I’ve read this little saying on social media. “You are holding a cup of hot coffee, and someone bumps you and causes the hot coffee to spill everywhere. Why did you spill the coffee? Because there was coffee in the cup. Had there been tea in the cup, you would have spilled tea. The point is whatever is in the cup will be spilled out. Therefore, when life comes along and shakes you, whatever is inside of you will spill out.” So…what spills out when you are struggling through a difficult situation? Do people around you see fear, anger, bitterness, or do they see love and grace as the marks of a true child of God? What does God see when He inspects you?

Maybe God is using your problem to protect you. Perhaps He has closed the door on a job, a new place to live, or a dream that you had, and it seems like the end of the world. We have to remember that God knows what is coming down the road, and sometimes He closes doors so that other doors can be opened. We can’t see as God sees. He is all knowing, and He knows just what we need when we need it. He may remove a person, a thing, or even a job from our lives in order to provide needed protection.

Our problems weigh us down. We try to carry the burden all alone. Oh, if we could only see the big picture. All those problems that we picture are not too big for God. We may or may not have invited the problem in, but regardless, God is going to use the situation for our good and His glory every time. Stop picturing yourself surrounded by all of the problems of the day. Begin picturing our perfect Lord and Savior…sitting right there in the middle of it all…working it all out. He’s working on each one of us. He’s directing us, correcting us, inspecting us, and protecting us, and ultimately, y’all, He is perfecting us. Just picture it!



John 3:3 “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.”

I Peter 1:3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation.

2 Corinthians 5:17 This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!

It’s that time of the year again. One of my favorite seasons has arrived. You may think I’m speaking of fall, but I’m not. It is technically fall, but it was 97 degrees here yesterday! It’s true I love fall, but I really love one of the farming seasons that begins during this time of year. We call it calving season. The cows are springing, bagging up, and dropping calves almost daily. We drive around the fields to locate the brand new babies and check on the soon to be mamas. We equate our calf seeking adventures to an Easter egg hunt at times. Our mama cows are pretty good at hiding their babies, and checking on the newly born calves can be a challenge. We purchased a new Hereford bull a couple of years ago, and I have to tell you something, that boy is producing some beautiful calves.

The actual process of calving, for the most part, is not a lot of work for the farmer. The mama does the work, and we get to enjoy the benefits. It is a beautiful experience to see new birth. The mama delivers the calf, and she immediately, gently cleans the baby up. She recognizes it as her own, and she will do whatever is necessary to protect the newborn calf. Although most deliveries are easy, from time to time, a mama cow will have difficulty. The calf may be a bit to big for her to deliver, and occasionally, the calf will have to physically be pulled out. I’ve not had to be a part of pulling a calf before. My husband, sons, and father-in-law always assume this role. I have had to pull a baby goat before, and that was super tough. I can only imagine how difficult it is to physically pull a calf out. What a way to arrive in this world…being tugged and pulled, resisting the change, not wanting to make the effort for the birthing process, resisting rather than arriving in a peaceful and gentle way.

Why would the baby want to leave the warm comfort of his or her mother’s womb and enter a strange, new, big unknown place anyway? Who could blame the calf for wanting to stay put? I was considering that idea this morning, and began to think about humans and our need for rebirth. We create this warm, comfortable womb for ourselves. We have developed habits and attitudes, and we become fairly comfortable with the way things are. The world around us says live however you want. If you are happy then it is okay. We have adapted way too much to the worldly culture. A part within us may want to follow Christ, but we resist the need to change. We are too comfortable living our lives, and our hearts have to be tugged and pulled by the Holy Spirit because we refuse to make the effort on our own. But y’all, in order for us to receive the gift of salvation, we must be reborn.

Fortunately for us, being reborn is so much easier than the pulling a resistant calf. No one is going to tie our legs together and pull us out of the womb. So why are we kicking and screaming and fighting the rebirthing process? The kingdom of God requires that we leave our comfort zone. We have to completely die to ourselves and begin living for Christ. That sounds strange. How do we die to ourselves? We have to come to the end of ourselves. We have to recognize that we can’t do anything without our heavenly Father. We must become new creations and children of the King. We must give our hearts completely to the Lord.

In the mission field, I have had people tell me many times that they were waiting for a certain age to arrive, and then at that point, they would come to Christ and be saved. This was one of the answers I received frequently while ministering in the Dominican Republic. The people seemed to have a mind set that you had to reach a certain age, eliminate all of the sin in life, and become a better person, or perhaps they thought that they had to give up their comfortable way of living for self. When I questioned why they needed to wait for a certain age (usually around 40) the answer was frequently something to the effect of “I’m not good enough yet. I’ll be a better person by such and such age.” People, it doesn’t work that way. We can never be good enough. We have to recognize the fact that we are all born sinners, but because of Christ, we can all be sinners saved by grace. All we have to do is admit that we are sinners, believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sins and was resurrected, and confess that Jesus is the Lord of our lives and commit our lives to Him. When we do that, the Father immediately, gently reaches down and cleans us up, and He recognizes us as one of His own. He will provide all the protection that we need. A wonderful thing happens at this point. The Holy Spirit of our living God takes up residence within us. That heart of stone we were carrying around that felt like an empty void is now beating for the Lord and full of life. That void we failed to fill despite our many efforts is now completely full. We didn’t do anything to earn this rebirth. We couldn’t possibly ever be good enough to deserve salvation. But God! Oh but God! He loves us so much that He desires a close and personal relationship with us, and He made a way.

To be reborn, we don’t have to clean our act up first. If we accept Christ as our Savior, He will do the cleaning up. The Holy Spirit will gently guide you in the right direction. He’ll nudge you here and there and let you know when sin appears, and He will strengthen you so that you can overcome the sin struggles. A new baby calf is one of the cutest things on the farm. When he first stands, his long little legs wobble as he tries to walk over to mama to nurse. Baby steps. Unsteady. Off balance. He struggles a bit, but soon he is latching on to mama and filling his belly with the milk of life. As young Christians, we are going to struggle. We also must take baby steps. We will feel unsteady, off balance, and unsure, and I’m not going to tell you that it won’t be a struggle. That enemy that controlled the old sin life will try to battle with us. He won’t give up easily, but there is no reason to fret. Our Savior has already defeated the enemy, and now we belong to God. We begin praying and speaking to the Lord. We latch on to His word, and soon, we too are filled with the milk of life, and we receive that much needed spiritual nourishment that only our Savior can provide.

Just as that baby calf grows into a healthy strong bull, a reborn person too will grow healthy and strong in spirit. It won’t happen over night. We can’t be reborn one day and know all we need to know about Christ the next. In fact, we will never know all that we need to know, but we can rest assured that we are no longer walking in the dark. We are no longer that old shell of a person. We are now new in Christ, and we are walking with Him. We grow by reading His Word, going to church, joining Bible studies, surrounding ourselves with Christian friends that help us stay on the path as we begin our walk, and we praise God and pray and pray and pray. God never said it would be easy. If you’ve read the Bible you already know that it won’t be easy. Actually, it’s going to be pretty hard. There will be struggles. I guarantee that there will be struggles. But one thing that I know for certain is that it will most definitely be worth it! Consider the hardest day of work that you ever put in during your lifetime. You thought that you couldn’t make it until quitting time, but you did. You got off work and went to the place you feel most at ease…home. Right now, Peeps, we are going through some of the hardest days of our lives. We may feel like we aren’t going to make it, but we will. And when our time here is finished, we get to go the best place ever…our heavenly home! It’s not going to be easy, but just remember that it will be worth it!



We’re studying Psalm 119 on Wednesday nights, and last night the topic was “What I love about the Word.” It brought to mind this devotional I wrote a couple of years ago.

John 3:16-17 (NLT) For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.

Romans 8:38-39 (NLT) And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Jesus loves me; this I know! For the Bible tells me so. Little ones to Him belong; they are weak, but He is strong. Jesus loves me, loves me still! Tho’ I’m very weak and ill. That I might from sin be free, bled and died upon the tree. Jesus loves me; He who died. Heaven’s gate to open wide. He will wash away my sin; let His little child come in. Jesus loves me; He will stay! Close beside me all way. Thou hast bled and died for me; I will henceforth live for Thee. Chorus: Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes, Jesus loves me! The Bible tells me so. I bet that almost everyone reading this knows this song by heart. We sang it from our very earliest days of childhood. It was written by the author named Anna Bartlett Warner (August 31, 1827 – January 22, 1915.) What I didn’t know was that it wasn’t originally written as a song. It was written as a poem in a novel. The main character in this book recites it to comfort a dying child about how much Jesus loves him. WE can have that same comfort! Jesus loves me, and He loves you too.

Isn’t it a wonderful feeling to know that no matter what we are enduring, Jesus loves us and He is still with us? Today, I want to talk about love, and I’m going to need you to get a piece of paper in hand as we begin to play a little game that I just made up this morning. I’m calling my game “Three Little Things.” The first step in the game is to ask the one you love to tell you three things that he or she loves about you. It can be your spouse, best friend, mother, father, or anyone that you love. Ask them to be honest. Next, write down three things that you love about that person. After you complete that list, I want you to write down three things that you love about yourself. Then write three things that you love about Christ. Finally write down three things that show you that Christ loves you.

As soon as my husband woke up this morning, I handed him a piece of paper that read, “Three Things Jeff Loves About KK.” He’s a good sport, y’all. He had barely opened his eyes, when I asked him to do this. I love this man, and I know that he loves me, but when you put someone on the spot to actually put pen to paper, you can’t be sure what you are going to get. His answers amazed me. His three answers were “1. Devoted to her family and friends. 2. Gives of her time regardless of cost. 3. God fearing and relentless to bring souls to Christ.” I don’t know about all that. When I look at myself, I don’t see myself the same way. Oh, I’m devoted to my family and friends. There is no doubt about that, but do I give of my time regardless of cost? Maybe, but sometimes, to be honest, I don’t do it out of the goodness of my heart. Sometimes, I do what I have to do because I have to do it. LOL. And I am God fearing, but am I relentless to bring souls to Christ? Oh goodness, I feel like I come up short all of the time.

I think the second part of this little game is the easiest part for me. I can make a list a mile long telling you all the things I love about my husband. As a matter of fact, I had a little book printed for him for Valentine’s Day a few years ago that listed 100 things I love about Jeff. It is a little cartoon stick figure book. I spent a day writing down all of the things that I love about him. It’s hard to pick just three. I love the way that he loves me, our family, and God. He has so much energy. He is funny, creative, and caring. He has a true servant’s heart. This list could go on for days, y’all, so I’m going to get back to the game. The third part of the game is actually the hardest for me. What are three things I love about myself? Ugh! I look in the mirror and I see this old lady staring back at me. The hair is graying, and needs to be colored. The wrinkles are appearing faster every year. The twenty year old body is gone with the years, and nothing can bring it back. It’s a good thing that I never really loved my looks. I’ve never been a girl who was proud of her looks. What do I love about me? That’s tough. I love that although I am a sinner, I have been saved by grace. I love that I am a nurse practitioner, and that I get to do a job that I love. I love that I am a wife, mother, grandmother, farmer, author, and Christian. I love who I am on the inside…most of the time. The outside, well that shell of a being needs some work with that crazy hair that doesn’t seem to care how I think it should behave.

The next part of the game gets easy again. What are three things I love about Christ? Oh my! How can I keep that list to three things? He died for me! I’ve got some truly awesome loving people in my life, but none of them have had to die for my sins! Christ knew that I was a sinner, and He died for me. He knew all of the good, bad, and ugly within me, yet He still chose to die for me. I love that He is a forgiving Savior. He knew when He created this girl that I was going to be a handful. He knew I was going to mess up multiple times, and no matter how many times I mess up, He still forgives my sins. He is always there to pick me up. He is my friend, Savior, Creator, Holy Father, Lord of lords, King of kings, Waymaker, Miracle Worker, Promise Keeper, my God! What is there not to love about Christ!?! The list is infinite!

Now, I bring you to the final part of our game this morning. What are three things that show me that Christ loves me. Let’s first turn to John 3:16-17 which reads, “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.” God sent His Son, Christ, to die on the cross for each of us so that we may have eternal life. He didn’t send Him to judge us, but to SAVE us! Christ died an agonizing death on the cross, taking on your sins and my sins and all of the sins of the world so that we might have everlasting life! If that doesn’t get your heart beating, nothing will. He loves us so much that He gave us His Word. The Bible, the oldest book in the world, was penned by man, but breathed by God. He gave us a written instruction manual for life, and a book that shares the redemption story so that all sinners, all people, can come to know Christ as their Lord and Savior. Thirdly, nothing can separate us from the love of Christ. NOTHING! Romans 8:38-39 assures us of this. “And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

We’ve completed this little exercise to look at love from different perspectives. How do others see us, how do we see others, how do we see ourselves, how do we see Christ, and how much Christ loves u?. Dwell on love as you go through this day, but most importantly, dwell on Christ. If you have accepted Him as your Savior, the Holy Spirit of the living God is residing within you. He loves you, and that my friends is where it’s at! Jesus loves me this I know, and that’s all I really need to know. I am His. He is mine. I am loved and you are too!



Numbers 22:28-35 Then the Lord gave the donkey the ability to speak. “What have I done to you that deserves your beating me three times?” it asked Balaam. “You have made me look like a fool!” Balaam shouted. “If I had a sword with me, I would kill you!” “But I am the same donkey you have ridden all your life,” the donkey answered. “Have I ever done anything like this before?” “No,” Balaam admitted. Then the Lord opened Balaam’s eyes, and he saw the angel of the Lord standing in the roadway with a drawn sword in his hand. Balaam bowed his head and fell face down on the ground before him. “Why did you beat your donkey those three times?” the angel of the Lord demanded. “Look, I have come to block your way because you are stubbornly resisting me. Three times the donkey saw me and shied away; otherwise, I would certainly have killed you by now and spared the donkey.” Then Balaam confessed to the angel of the Lord, “I have sinned. I didn’t realize you were standing in the road to block my way. I will return home if you are against my going.” But the angel of the Lord told Balaam, “Go with these men, but say only what I tell you to say.” So Balaam went on with Balak’s officials.

I love the story of Balaam and his talking donkey. Everyone that knows me, knows that I love animals in a huge way. I talk to my animals all the time, and I think that some of them understand me. I know that my Bouvier des Flandres, Sophie, understands me. She is such a smart girl. My animals converse with me, but not with spoken words in English. They speak their animal barks, moos, and cock-a-doodle-dos. Sometimes, I know what they are trying to tell me, and I can almost hear what they are saying, but I’m no Dr. Dolittle. Life would be so much simpler down at the barn if the animals spoke English, and I know it would be a whole lot more interesting. Balaam had quite an interesting and eye opening experience with the only real life talking donkey.

The Moabites and Midianites were afraid. They knew about Israel’s victories, and they feared that they were going to be the next people over run by them. They wanted some supernatural help so they sought the assistance of Balaam. They knew who Balaam was, and they wanted him to come and curse the people of Israel. However, God told Balaam not to curse His people. Balak received word that Balaam said he could not come and curse the people, and he decided to sweeten the deal. He promised Balaam a lot of money. Balaam left on his donkey en route to deliver the cursing, but his donkey tried three times to stop him. First, the donkey went off of the road and into a field. Next, the donkey got too close to a wall and crushed the foot of Balaam against the wall. Finally, the donkey laid down on Balaam. At this point, Balaam became very angry and struck the donkey a third time. The funniest thing happened next. The donkey looked at Balaam and spoke. I could just hear the donkey saying, “Dude, what is wrong with you!”

I love this story because it is so unlike God, and it reminds us that God is in total control and that he has a sense of humor. He wants to communicate with us, and if we aren’t listening to His voice, He may just open the mouth of a donkey. God is so creative. God uses a variety of means to speak to us, and we must be willing to hear from Him. When God asks us to do something, He wants us to obey. Balaam started off on the right track. God told him not to go to curse the people of Israel, and he stayed put, but then the deal was sweetened. The enemy works this way. If he can’t win you over one way, he will come back to you again and again with a sweeter deal each time and try to break your resolve. Don’t fall for it. Continue to obey God, and don’t listen to the enemy.

Another thing to consider about this story, is that when we are walking (or riding a donkey) outside of the will of God, many times He will put up some roadblocks. He may have to put up more than one, but God is going to get our attention one way or another. If we are going the wrong way, God will stand in the road to oppose us. He loves us. He doesn’t want us going down a road of destruction or a road that leads away from Him. He will do whatever is necessary to make us turn around. I can recount many memories of times when things didn’t go as planned. I’ve often shared the story of when I wasn’t accepted into the acute care nurse practitioner program after completing my bachelor’s in nursing. I was so upset. I had a 4.0 GPA, several years of experience in critical care, and a sparkling resume. There was no reason that I should not have been accepted. I was angry, I was hurt. I even cried like a baby. I eventually dried my tears, and I applied for the family nurse practitioner track, and I was accepted immediately. It wasn’t until a long while later that I realized that God changed my path. That was more than 25 years ago, and had I completed the acute care program, I would have had to move away from my family and friends. There were no acute care nurse practitioner jobs available in my area back then. And the “all knowing” me didn’t want to do family practice because critical care was all that I really knew up until that point. Little did I know that my God already knew just what and where I needed to be. I absolutely love being a family nurse practitioner. I feel like it is a calling from God. I interact with entire families on a daily basis, and I get to share Christ…on the job! I’m so thankful He put that roadblock in my path. His plans are always so much better than mine!

Lastly, let us consider Balaam’s actions. The donkey was trying to protect Balaam. He saw the angel of the Lord standing in the road blocking the way, but Balaam could not see the angel. The donkey tried three times to avoid running into the angel, and three times Balaam beat his good old donkey. God placed a roadblock right in front of him, and he couldn’t see it, and instead of trying to figure out why his donkey was acting out of sorts, he did as we do many times and became angry and struck the source of his irritation. God tries to get our attention, and when we don’t listen, He tries again and again, and before we know it, we are beating the donkey, the wrong donkey, who is an innocent victim. We begin to lash out at others, and we blame other people in our lives for our bad circumstances rather than looking inward to try to determine why things are as they are.

If God is calling you in a certain direction, run to Him. Don’t compromise on that calling. If you’ve got a burr in your saddle, maybe you should try to remove the burr by finding out the source of the irritation. Is God putting it there to protect you and put you back on the right track? Don’t strike others and blame them when things are going wrong because something in your own life needs to be corrected. Instead, sit down and have a talk with God. Open His word. I bet He is just waiting to hear from you right now! God desires a relationship with each of us, and if we are straying from Him, He may not open the mouth of a donkey to get our attention, but I guarantee you that He will get our attention because He loves us that much!



John 3:16 For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.

John 10:10 The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.

John 10:28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one can snatch them away from me.

Our pastor, Brother Shane, asked me if I would speak for about 5 minutes on why I am grateful for my salvation during our Sunday morning service yesterday. Well, folks, that presented a bit of a challenge for this wordy girl. After all, how can I possibly explain how grateful I am for salvation in just 5 short minutes? I put a lot of thought into it, and I narrowed it down to a few of my favorite reasons. This list is definitely not all inclusive, and neither is it in order of favoriten to least favorite, but I definitely want to share a few favorites. I shared this with my church family, and today, I want to share it with you.

I accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as my Savior at the age of 13. There was no magical change in the outward me, but over the years (we won’t talk about how many), Christ has slowly but surely change this old wretched soul. Here are a few of the most important changes and blessings that I can claim because of my salvation and for each and every one, I am eternally grateful.

(I used an acrostic for the word G.R.A.T.E.F.U.L.)

GRACE – Grace is the unmerited gift of divine favor that I receive from God through salvation. Unmerited favor, y’all! It is through grace that God works effective change in our hearts and lives.

RELATIONSHIP – Because of my salvation, I have a direct relationship with Christ. I am the daughter of the King! I have a Father that I can cry out to in the middle of the night, and He will always be there. And don’t forget about the other relationships…I have brothers and sisters in Christ and some are of those relationships are closer that that of my blood relatives.

ARMOR – Ephesians 6 explains the armor of God. Salvation gives us armor. With salvation, we can put on the full armor of God and take a stand against the devil’s schemes. I don’t know about you, but I need that protection, and I gladly wear it!

TRUTH – With salvation, I can stand on truth. God has given us His word to guide and direct us. He has kept every promise. He has never lied. I am so grateful for God’s truth.

EVERLASTING JOY – We are going to have good days, and we are going to have bad days. There will be happiness and sadness. But even on the terrible, awful, horrible days, with salvation, there is everlasting joy. Happiness is fleeting, but joy in Jesus is everlasting.

FAITH – Our God is faithful to His children, and He daily teaches me to have faith in Him. I am learning daily to lean fully on Him. Faith is trust in action, and I fully trust in Him.

UNITY – Salvation provides unity. Through salvation, we are united with Christ. He is the bridegroom, and the church is His bride. We are united and those ties that bind can not be separated. No one can snatch me out of His hand (John 10:28)

LIFE ABUNDANT & LIFE EVERLASTING – I may have saved the best for last. John 10:10 tells us that Christ came so that we may have life and that we may have it more abundantly. Salvation gives us not only life, it gives us abundant life. One of my favorite sayings is , “I’m drinking from my saucer because my cup is overflowing.” With the free gift of salvation comes many blessings, so many blessings that they literally cause my heart to overflow. And the most important gift of salvation is life eternal. When my days here are on earth are done, I’m going to my heavenly home. I can’t wait. Unfortunately, every one won’t be there. Only those who have accepted this precious free gift of salvation will pass through those pearly gates. I leave you with two questions. Will I see you there? And if so, why are you grateful for your salvation? Ponder on that today.



Ephesians 4:31-32 (NLT) Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.

Isaiah 43:18-19 (NLT) But forget all that— it is nothing compared to what I am going to do. For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.

Hebrews 13:8 (NLT) Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

I’m sitting here in a rocking chair on my front porch witnessing the early signs of fall. The birds are singing, and there is a very light hint of coolness in the air. Brown leaves are already beginning to gather around the yard. The fruit tree leaves are rapidly changing from brilliant deep greens to golden yellow as they prepare to let go. We live in the middle of eighty park like acres, so as you can imagine, we have a lot of trees. Of all those trees, I have my one favorite little tree. It is a Japanese Maple that I bought as a little seedling many moons ago. When my husband and I married, we dug up that little tree and planted it in our front yard. It was supposed to be one of those maples with the beautiful, dark maroon leaves, but surprise…it did not grow into the tree that I planned it to be. It grew into one that is so much better. In the very earliest days of spring, little green leaves begin to develop and grow. Before long, the little maple is covered with beautiful green leaves and those leaves provide a much needed shade for the front yard and bring comfort for our morning porch sitting sessions. It really is a beautiful tree with all of those lovely green leaves, the branches stand high, reaching for the sky, boldly and beautifully. Yes, that little tree looks like it’s got it all together, but it doesn’t really begin to shine until it prepares to let go of its leaves. That sounds crazy, I know, but it is the truth. Every year, right before Thanksgiving, those pretty green leaves begin to turn, and for a few short weeks, that maple tree becomes the most beautiful fixture in our yard. The leaves gradually change into splendid shades of gold and orange. I marvel at the beauty of it every single year. I delight at looking at that tree when I drive up after a long day or even if I’m just sitting on the porch rocking. The marvelous beauty of the fall colors only last a few weeks though, and eventually that little maple tree stands there with its branches held high as though it was raising its arms to the sky, bare, empty, and colorless.

If I saw that tree during the winter season, I would have never wanted to bring it home. I would have thought that it was a sad, boring little tree. I would not have realized that a total transformation had recently occurred, and could not imagine the transformation that was soon to come when the spring season returned. We could learn a lot from this little tree. It doesn’t stubbornly hold on to its dead leaves. It drops them to the ground letting go of the old season of life while it anxiously awaits for the new season. Consider that for a moment. We also go through seasons of change, and the seasons change us. We can not cling to the past. We have to get rid of all the bitterness, anger, and every form of malice, and learn to be kind and compassionate to one and be forgiving just as Paul told the Ephesians. As humans we often want to hold on to the things of the past. We sometimes want to live in the past because we feel like those were the best times of our lives. Others want to forget the past because it felt like the worse time of their lives. It is okay to remember the past, rejoice in those fond memories and learn from the mistakes, but we can’t set up house there. That season has passed, we grew during that season, but we have to let those leaves fall. We can’t cling to the old leaves. They have to fall to the ground so that we can make room for the new season that is just around the corner.

That Japanese Maple is like a picture of what Jesus does in our lives. We go through all kinds of seasons. We start off tiny, weak and small, and we have no clue how we will look as we grow and mature. As kids, we develop dreams of who and what we will become, and before we know it, we are all grown up, and things don’t look anything like we thought they would. We aren’t doing what we had planned to do while we were still in our youth, but as we look within ourselves, we realize that we are so much better than what we dreamed of. We have survived many seasons. Some of those seasons were hard. We endured loss of loved ones, break ups, loneliness, financial strain, sickness, and grief. We may have fallen down, but we did not give up. We grew stronger in those seasons. The seasons changed us. We have also been through some really great seasons that were beautiful, bright, and marvelous that brought so much richness to our lives and the lives around us. Those seasons passed, and we recognized the beautiful changes that occurred as we grew in love, happiness, and grace. Sometimes, the Lord sends a season so that we have to make a change. We can’t remain the same. We may get complacent and lazy, and Jesus may send a new season to make us let go and let Him take the lead in our lives. He knows that there is strength in our branches. He wants us to look up to Him, let go of things that are not of Him, and see things in a new light and perspective.

When we get bogged down in the hard, winter seasons of life, and it feels like we have lost all of our brilliant color, and there is nothing left but the dull, gray branches reaching upward, it is then that we might just find ourselves right where the Lord wants us to be as He prepares us for the best season yet. We can always rest in the word of God. Just look at these words from the book of Isaiah, “But forget all that— it is nothing compared to what I am going to do. For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.” Christ is preparing you. He is getting you ready for a great work. He may be pruning you now, and pruning hurts, but the pruning will bring forth new vines and much fruit. Let it go, and let God take the lead. This year feels like it has been one very long season of fall….one great fall after the other…but the Master Gardener is working everything out for our good and His glory. Hang on. Enjoy the fall. Marvel at the changes that are occurring within you as our Lord prepares you for the next great season!