Sunday, November 4, 2007

Rock the Sound

Last night had an impact on me in more ways than one. I managed to drive all the way to Bridgeport and back without incident, yet tripped over a curb and fell on the sidewalk. Thankfully I didn’t hit the sign, or break anything, just lost a few layers of skin and got a nice bruise on my knee, which was pretty embarassing as I limped into the arena. Given the recent tragedy on that road on Friday, and the storm Noel passing through we were grateful for a safe drive. But the main impact of the evening came in a safer setting….

Five of us went to Rock the Sound last night. It’s a concert that featured 5 different well- known Christian bands, five hours of music, and since its called ROCK the Sound, you can imagine the decibal level. Yes, I brought ear plugs. The seats were great, we were centered, looking right at the stage, the first row of seats above the floor. Of course, there were big screens, so you saw everything no matter where you were.

The first group, Storyside B, was ok. The second group was Grits, which was supposed to be a hip hop rap dance type genre, but I just didn’t get. It seems all they did was hype and noise, and I could hardly get anything out of any lyrics. They just were not my cup of tea. Not that my mind is closed to that style, last year I saw TobyMac, and loved it. Yes, I needed my earplugs. Next up was Skillet, which is VERY loud and rocky and has all the hype and head shaking of your typical rock band, with some lyrics that were about the Lord. One number was quieter and I realized they are pretty good, but most of the time the volume and the rest of the songs were more screaming than singing, and lots of theatrics. The kids loved it. I wore the earplugs.

Next was a powerful drama set to music, which had everyone in tears, followed by a genuine young man giving an altar call. The presence of God was all over that time. Many people responded, and I realized again that it takes all kinds of events to reach all kinds of people. Even though most of the music was not something I would listen to, it brought people there that needed to hear about God’s love for them, and gave them an opportunity to respond. So regardless of what I think about certain artists, God used the event.

Jars of Clay was fun, not too loud to enjoy. But the time that impacted me the most was when Jeremy Camp was on stage. I’ll admit to going just because he was there, his music helped me through a very difficult time in my life. Yes, he had the lights and the rock sound, but in every song, you clearly saw God. He has been through so much, and shared some of his testimony, his daily struggles, and what he is reading in the Word. He was so genuine and has a passion for the Lord. We were at a rock concert, and the focus was not the artist or the music, but the Lord. It was a time of worship. The Lord is all over that young man’s life, and God’s anointing is all over his music and his message. It made me want that in my own life.

This man has a gift. I found myself marveling over God’s presence in his life, and wishing for that same anointing in my own. Then it was as if God whispered to me, “You are not going to find that anointing in the classroom, but in My presence.” That was the message I went all the way to Bridgeport to hear. Yes, I will be finishing up my associates degree this summer, but the classes are not what will make me a better writer. It’s God’s presence, working in and through my everyday life, that will make a difference.

I don’t know about you, but when people look at my life, I don’t want them to say “Eh, it’s OK…”
I don’t want them to have to get through the hype and the noise to find Him. I want them to see His presence clearly in my life, and the difference He makes. I want my life to shine for Him. I know it doesn’t always, but He is faithful to send along little reminders to help me adjust my focus. Even in the middle of a rock concert…. 11/4/2007

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Dancing With the Stars

Though we don’t watch very much television around our house, I must admit to having a few favorite shows. These “regulars” have changed over time, as some have moved to a night that conflicted with hubby time or small group or Lit class. Frankly, there’s not much good on these days anyway. We’ve taken to watching “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman” DVDs from Netflix, which I suppose is what led to my interest in watching Jayne Seymour on “Dancing With the Stars” this season. Now, only four episodes in, it’s getting hard to tell which partner is the dancing professional and which is the “star”. It’s amazing to watch the passion and dedication these couples dance with every week.

This morning, as I read in Galatians, I came across a prescription for life as a Christian, one verse that could guide our entire lives.

“If we are living now by the Holy Spirit, let us follow the Holy Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives.” Galatians 5:25

How simple is that? The complicated thing is remembering to do that! How often do we pause to consider asking for His leading in the every day, ordinary moments in our lives? Of course, we ask for His guidance in the “big” things, job decisions, relationship problems, and other major life issues, or at least I hope we do… But how often do we think to follow His leading cleaning the house, arranging our priorities for the day, or even going to Wal-Mart?

Take a minute to read that verse again, in light of “Dancing With the Stars”. We are partnered with the expert dancing professional, who can help us orchestrate the choreography of our lives. We need to spend hours of practice time, learning the moves of the Christian walk from His word, and following the lead of the Holy Spirit around the dance floor called everyday life. We need to be sensitive to His voice, to the music of His purpose, and learn to flow with His rhythm. We need to listen to the still small voice guiding our path, checking our words, charting our course.

On the television show, the couples are beginning to flow as one, you can hardly tell the trained professional from the dance student. As Christians, our lives should look more and more like Jesus every day.

“But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit. So don’t get tired of doing what is good. Don’t’ get discouraged and give up, for we will reap a harvest of blessing at the appropriate time.” Gal. 6:8-9

I don’t know what the prize is on “Dancing With the Stars”, but I know it pales in comparison to the eternity we will have in heaven. And as we learn the moves here on earth, will have the satisfaction of a life well lived, danced in step with the Master’s timing, and shining for His glory.

Following His leading,

Cheryl 10/17/07

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Finding Nemo?

Just Keep Swimming….

Have you ever noticed how easy it is to get off track as a Christian? You were heading along in the right direction, when you suddenly hit a bump that sends you off on a tangent instead of your original path. Like this morning, while typing this, I discovered the internet is down and started trying to figure it out. Getting sidetracked is not a new problem, Paul was talking to the Galatians about the same thing, almost 2000 years ago.

“I am shocked that you are turning away so soon from God, who in His love and mercy called you to share the eternal life He gives through Christ. You are already following a different way that pretends to be the Good News but is not the Good News at all. You are being fooled by those who twist and change the truth concerning Christ.” Gal. 1:6,7

How can we be following Jesus and get off track? By taking our eyes off Him, fussing over the circumstances around us, and getting distracted dealing with problems instead of drawing closer to Him. Then, when we look up, it seems we are headed in the same general direction, and don’t realize we are off course. In Paul’s time, the Galatians were getting caught up in religiously trying to please God through perfectly obeying the law. Somewhere along the line they had started trying to earn their way into God’s favor.

“Have you lost your senses? After starting your Christian lives in the Spirit, why are you now trying to become perfect by your own human effort?” Gal. 3:3

It’s easy to get caught up in the works of the kingdom, the requirements of the law, and doing and saying all the right things. Yet sometimes in all of that, we get tangled up in religion, and lose sight of the relationship He wants to have with us. We get so distracted trying to please Him by keeping the law, yet He is calling us to keep Him company and sit at His feet. We are so easily distracted, feeling like we should earn our way, but He is our way! As we spend time with Him, He’ll do the work in us and through us.

One of my favorite characters in the movie “Finding Nemo” was a lovable little fish named Dory. She was always forgetting things, even from a minute ago, and freaking out when she didn’t remember how she got there or who she was with. Amazingly enough, she did remember and kept repeating one very important thing. She knew the address they needed to find Nemo, “22 Wallaby Lane, Sydney”. Her other famous line was “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming..” Dory and Nemo’s father traveled through many obstacles, sharks, jellyfish, sea turtles and fishing nets to rescue Nemo. Through it all, Dory kept reciting the address, and saying to herself, “just keep swimming”.

As Christians, we have many dangers and distractions. We know our destination, and perhaps we need the simple faith of little Dory, to keep heading to our Destiny, and just keep swimming. When the sharks attack, instead of hiding out and skipping church, devotions, small group or fellowship, we should be running to our “school” of Christian brothers and sisters to support us and pray us through. We should be banding together, encouraging each other through our journey, instead of scattering in separate directions.
We are placed in the body of Christ for a reason, to encourage one another and work as a team to rescue the lost and hurting around us. Somehow when we are getting stung right and left by the jellyfish of our circumstances, (like a no water, brown water, broken dishwasher, malfunction light, broken tooth, tv signal issues, no internet kind of month) it is easy to forget that we have a Rescuer and a Way of Escape.

In the midst of my crazy month, I cried out to the Lord, “What am I doing wrong?” He gave me something I needed to repent of, and things are slowly turning around. I don’t know if that had any connection to what was going on or not, sometimes it does, and sometimes things just happen even when we don’t have some wrong attitude lurking. But I am thankful the water is working and no longer mud puddle brown. After 2 weeks, the dishwasher is finally fixed. The malfunction light went off by itself, the dish tv problem seems to have cleared up, and somehow my tooth problem will work itself out. With no dental insurance, I need a crown, and I know the Lord has a crown for me! All these trials build His character in us, while He prepares the crown of glory we will someday wear. Until then, head in the right direction and just keep swimming….

In His school,

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Hit Me

Do you remember back in elementary school, when you were just walking down the hallway, minding your own business and suddenly people started hitting you on the way by and laughing? Little did you know, someone had taped a "Hit Me" on your back, so you stop and take it off and life goes back to normal.

Sometimes life is like that. You are going along, minding your own business, and all of a sudden it feels like you are getting hit from every angle. Your filling falls out, you lose water, the dishwasher breaks, your daughter gets rear-ended and catches a pan of chicken on fire, ALL IN THE SAME WEEK! You feel like you have a giant "Hit me" sign on your back and don’t know how to get it off. You probably could blame it on the devil, but things break and things go wrong, so I don’t choose to see the enemy behind everything that doesn’t go my way. I choose to see God at work, allowing these things to happen to remind me to look to Him.

James says "Dear brothers and sisters, whenever trouble comes your way, let it be an opportunity for joy. For when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed you will be strong in character and ready for anything." James 1:2-4

The victory comes, not in having perfect weeks, where nothing goes wrong, but keeping your eyes on the Lord and trusting Him to bring you through. It’s in having the right attitude in the midst of these little annoyances. Jesus said "In this world, you will have troubles, but fear not, I have overcome." In the grand scope of things, I don’t even think this type of week qualifies as trouble, when you think about the people worldwide who REALLY have troubles. I’m not even sure I could call them "light and momentary afflictions", because its all about stuff that doesn’t matter, just normal every day results of the laws of modern life, the fact that things break. How about "the trying of our faith produces patience"? I’m not sure these even qualify as a trial of faith. They are just annoyances, like the "Hit Me" sign. All these things are so LITTLE in the light of eternity, yet we get so flustered by them. These little problems are NOTHING, yet God can use them to build faith and endurance in us, so we will be "strong in character and ready for anything".

Thank God this week that instead of giving you a perfect life, He is giving you a life that will perfect you and prepare you for eternity. We are lumps of clay in the Master’s hands. Yield to His work in you….

With love and prayers,

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Rut or Routine?

Ahhh, routine…. It can be a beautiful thing. The kids are all back to school so this is the second full week of having my regular schedule back. I really love having the kids home during the summer, but the way people come and go around here makes the house like Grand Central Station, and the usual cooking and cleaning routines are tossed out the window on the way to the beach. So no matter how you try to clean, plan or organize during that season, due to the sheer volume of people circulating in and out at warp speed, things tend to get a little discombobulated.

You can see why I might look forward to the semi-organized patterns of fall! The towels get hung on the line, pies get baked, dinner gets cooked (when it doesn’t interfere with a soccer game), and the house is a lot cleaner. I have some quiet and some time to just relax! I can make plans to get together with friends, or work in the yard, or spend all afternoon reading a book. The Lord has been filling up my calendar with dates with my friends this month. It’s a wonderful thing.

It’s funny to think how routine is welcome in some areas, and starts to feel like a rut in others. While I may appreciate the routine at home, in other areas I find things feeling a little stale. Maybe that’s why I went back to school, to dust off my brain, learn some new things, improve my writing, meet new people. In my marriage, we are breaking out of the same old routine and trying to really connect and spend quality time. In my spiritual life, I know I want more than I am currently walking in. In so many areas of my life, it’s a time to get out of the ruts where I find myself trudging along. Time to get up where I can see the grass growing and smell the roses, to experience the journey and enjoy it.

Jesus came so we could have "life, more abundantly" and He wants us to live it and love it! Somehow we get into our comfortable safe routines, looking just at the steps in front of our feet, and miss the wonderful scenery along the way. We forget that life can be an adventure because we are so busy with our "to-do" list we ignore the "just for fun" list. He wants us to enjoy our everyday lives, like Joyce Meyer would say.

Take stock of where you are, and what needs changing in your life. God wants faithfulness and consistency in our lives, but it doesn’t have to be boring! Stop going through life on cruise control or automatic pilot. Stop and smell the roses. Keep looking up and begin to see all He has in store for you. Be open to the new paths He may lead you down, following Him every step of the way.
May you find joy in the journey.

With love,

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Gifts and hats

“A spiritual gift is given to each of us as a means of helping the entire church. 1 COR 12:7

This morning’s blog came to me in stages. This morning , a verse in 1 Corinthians 1 caught my attention. An hour later, as I was talking with Scott about an issue at work I have been struggling with, he gave me some advice that I have given to someone else recently. That triggered the memory of what Mama Toni shared at Women’s Bible Study about spiritual gifts in 1 Corinthians 12, which in turn sent me searching for a passage I remembered reading in Romans last week. The way this blog came together reminded me of the verse that talks about God’s word being taught “line upon line, precept upon precept”. The pieces were falling into place and I felt like God was really speaking to me.

“I don’t remember baptizing anyone else. For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the Good News- and not with clever speeches and high sounding ideas, for fear that the cross of Christ would lose its power. 1 Cor. 1:16b-17

Paul was dealing with divisions in the church, people boasting they were following Paul or Peter or Appollos, or Christ alone. It was creating cliques and turmoil in the church. So he was writing to address this problem, saying he had only baptized a few people. Then, what hit me, was his statement of purpose. “For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the Good News-“ His major goal was not baptizing, but preaching. Yes, he did baptize a few when needed, but his primary mission was preaching the Gospel. He could have been all side-tracked with baptisms, because I am sure many people would have loved to claim they were baptized by such a man of God as Paul, but that was not his calling. Romans 1 “This letter is from Paul, Jesus Christ’s slave, chosen by God to be an apostle and sent out to preach His Good News.” Like the apostles that didn’t get sidetracked by matters of distribution of aid to the widows, he knew his primary mission. Paul was called to be an apostle (watching over the churches) and preaching the Good News. He was determined to stay on track with what God was calling him to do.

“God has given each of us the ability to do certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak when you have faith that God is speaking through you. If your gift is that of serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, do a good job of teaching. If your gift is to encourage others, do it! If you have money, share it generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.”
Romans 12:6-8

God has given us each different talents and abilities, which combined with our temperament, our personality, and our past experiences, make us a one of a kind gift to the body. Joyce Meyer always says not to focus all our energy into improving our skill level in our weak areas, but to concentrate on what we are gifted at and do that well. If you are not gifted with an aptitude for math, God is not going to call you to be church treasurer. But you may have a gift for music, and He might call you to use that. If you were all obsessed with taking math courses because you’re not good at that, you might not have the time to practice your musical talents. This passage tell us to find what God has gifted us to do, and do it to the best of our ability. Our love and joy in doing what God has created us to do will shine through, and like the passage says, it will “help the entire church”. People doing what God has gifted them with and given them a heart for will be happy servants of the Lord. If you are trying to do something you have no gift for, you are often stressed and struggling.

Paul knew it was good for him to concentrate on God was calling him to do. There were other people there to baptize, to organize the helps ministry, and to pastor the church. He did his job of overseeing and preaching the Gospel, and didn’t get sidetracked on daisy trails. He preached “not with clever speeches and high sounding ideas, for fear that the cross of Christ would lose its power” . If we get caught up in side trails, the gift Christ has given us loses it’s power, because we are too worn out to do it well. The body is made up of many parts, and we need to let each one do their own part. Sometimes I think we feel we have to wear a lot of hats in the church, but maybe by wearing the hats we are not called to, just so a ministry position doesn’t go unstaffed hurts us all. Maybe we are keeping someone else who is gifted from stepping into that position. Or maybe, that ministry needs to be changed or laid aside for a season, or even discontinued. Seasons come and go, even in a church, and the sweaters you needed in the winter are overkill to layer on in the summer. We don’t feel guilty for packing away the winter clothes every summer, yet why do we feel bad about packing away a program that is not needed at the current time in the church? Sometimes when the need for a ministry passes, or the grace has lifted from your involvement in it, it’s time to make changes. For us, there was a season that Scott and I were youth leaders. We enjoyed doing it, it filled a need in the church, yet there came a time that we realized it was time to hand the ministry over to someone who had the gift and the vision for it. We didn’t feel bad about it, because we knew God was saying it was time to pass the baton.

I wear a lot of hats. My heart has been crying out for change, but maybe I have been too busy balancing my hats to see what treasures God has in store for me. I think what God is saying to me is to listen to what He is saying, and pass off the hats that He is not calling me to wear right now. It’s time for fall cleaning, time to look at each hat, and ask God if this is something I am supposed to be doing in this season of my life. Then, when I have passed on the hats I am not supposed to have, He may pass a new one my way, and I won’t be too stressed or worn out to enjoy it.

Find what you love to do, and God will help you find a way to use your gifts to be a blessing to those around you. Go buy yourself a new hat to remind you of the joy He wants you to have in serving Him!

With love and prayers, and many thanks for all your encouragement!

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Barking at Thunder

Last week I awoke to the sound of thunder rumbling in the distance. Most of the household was asleep, and as I tried to drift back to dreamland myself, my plans were interrupted. Scottie, our Scottish Terrier, heard the thunder and began his usual routine of running back and forth throughout the house, barking ferociously or fearfully, I’m not sure which, at every rumble. Yelling at him doesn’t help, as soon as you stop staring at him, he goes right back to barking. Locking him in his cage doesn’t send the message that he should be still and quiet, he just whines and barks from there. But that is precisely where I put him, hoping to keep him from running up and down the hallway, waking the entire household at four AM. Instead, it woke up Bekah, who either out of aggravation or sympathy, let him out of the cage and sat on the couch with the scared doggy until the storm passed.

The thing that Scottie doesn’t realize, is the fact that thunder can’t hurt him. It’s just a big scary noise. He wastes all that energy, gets worked up in a frazzle, over something that is totally harmless. He is ignorant of the lightning, which could hurt him, if he ran recklessly around outside in it. But he is safely inside the house, secure and protected, yet he continues to run frantically around barking, not knowing he is safe.

I started to think about how often I act like a little dog barking at thunder. How easily I get stressed over the things that really can’t hurt me, and run around frantically barking at the people around me. What about those things in our lives that seem scary or uncomfortable, how do we react to those? Do we run back and forth, not accomplishing anything, talking fearfully and worrying? Sometimes I wonder if God is tempted to put us in our little cage just to get our attention and say "Be still and know that I am God." Yet I think He is more like the one who releases us from the cage, curls up on the couch with us, and comforts our worried hearts.

"And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from His love. Death can’t, and life can’t. The angels can’t and the demons can’t. Our fears for today, our worries about tomorrow, and even the powers of hell can’t keep God’s love away. Whether we are high above the sky or in the deepest ocean, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:38-39 NLT

The next time the thunder rumbles in your life, when something has you scared or stressed, stop and think about this. Nothing can separate you from God’s love. NOTHING. Absolutely nothing. And if we have His love, is there anything, big or small, that He can’t help us through? Snuggle in close to Him and get the comfort and strength you need. He’s waiting for you.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

On letting go...

How are you with change? With saying goodbye, or leaving what’s familiar? Somehow, that is not something that comes easy to most of us. I think as a Mom, the hardest thing in your life is "letting go". That first day of kindergarten, the day they get the driver’s license, the year they move off to college. Yet these are the milestones that are expected, and you see them coming.
But how are you with the unexpected ones? A friend moves away, a relationship changes, someone dies, you lose a job, a person that was once a part of your life isn’t there anymore, you fill in the blank…. How do you deal with that?

When my daughter left for 5 months in Costa Rica, I could tell that people were praying for us. Somewhere on the way to New York City, as I was driving along praying, God did something in my heart. There was a peace there I couldn’t explain, and I was able to bring her to the airport and wave goodbye without crying. If you know me, that is amazing. I cry at Hallmark commercials. Yet, I could put her on the plane, knowing that God is with her, and trust she will have a wonderful experience there.

There have been other times in my life, change has come, and I haven’t even noticed the airport signs. Maybe I refused to look, had my fingers in my ears, so I wouldn’t hear the sound of the planes. I was too busy trying to keep things "life as usual" to realize the change was needed, that it was time to say goodbye and graciously let go… I’ve even tried running after the plane, saying "Wait, take me with you!" But sometimes we need to let the people in our lives go. They may never be in our lives in quite the same way, just like Rebekah is not part of our daily routine right now. But the people that are important to us, they will wander in and out of our lives, just in a different way. And we need to be OK with that. It would be pretty silly if I were still sitting at the airport, missing my daughter and waiting for her to come home, wouldn’t it? Yet I know I’ve been guilty of that in other areas of my life. OK, self, wake up and smell the coffee…

People change, circumstances change. But I know there is one constant in my life, and that is God. He doesn’t change, and He’ll always be there for me. With His help, I can learn to walk more graciously through the changes in my life, instead of being dragged, kicking and screaming all the way, into a new season. I know if I’m looking at Him, instead of what I’m going through, I’ll be able to see things in a new perspective, and He’ll begin to show me the plan He has in all of it. Because I know the plans He has for me are plans for good, for peace, for a hope and a future. When I begin to trust that He knows what He’s doing with my life, and in the lives of the ones I love, then I can relax and enjoy the ride. Even if it’s taking someone I love to the airport.
Let go and Let God. You’ll be amazed at what He can do.

(this blog was written last year, and my daughter is now back home, finishing her last semester of college… that's her in Costa Rica, in the picture above. I decided to post it after reading this blog by Kathy, who gave me my first ever blogger comment, go check out her page: )

Friday, August 3, 2007

Free Friday tunes

It's a Friday night, and it's as hot as blue blazes. (Anyone know where that saying came from?) I'm sitting in front of the fan, eating fresh fruit salad (thanks to Bekah!), while checking my mail and my myspace, (what a multi-tasker!) when I found a great new site. On my couch, with a wireless laptop. Gotta love it.

Anyway, while reading bulletins on myspace, and being a Chris Rice fan, (his web site is he had a myspace bulletin posted about a free download of his new song, "So much for my sad song"

so of course I followed the link to I downloaded Chris' new song , as well as two other groups I had never heard of, and found myself pleasantly surprised. So I did sign up to download my 3 free songs every Friday, to broaden my horizons and try out some new tunes. Don't want to get stuck in a rut! Now I just need a lesson from the kids about how to move them to my Ipod.

Also on the music topic, you can bet we will be ordering tickets to see Jeremy Camp and some other great Christian artists at Rock the Sound in Bridgeport CT in November. Tickets go on sale August 11th, and you sure get your money's worth out of that concert. Last year we saw Casting Crowns, TobyMac, Pillar, Stellar Kart, and one other group I can't remember right now. It was awesome! I thought I wouldn't go back this year, since it's a late night for us old homebody types, but I can't pass up Jeremy Camp! His music helped me hold on through some really hard times and it really ministered to me. his site is and the link for those concert tickets is

so, no, I am not getting paid to throw all these links in, just sharing some cool stuff I found while wandering around the internet tonight. it's an amazing thing, earlier in the week I was researching solar energy and shopping for board games, tonight I am downloading music and writing a blog and rambling on in a format that can reach people all over the world. It's pretty amazing. But still not as amazing and far reaching as God's love or His knowledge about every detail of our lives. Wow. So have a great weekend, keep cool, and remember that our AWESOME God is rejoicing over you with singing.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

When the Earth Quakes

“When the earth quakes and its people live in turmoil, I am the one who keeps its foundation firm.” Psalm 75:3

Not living in California, I don’t have any experience in an actual earthquake. But I do know that when you’re in one, you’re supposed to get into a doorway and hold on for dear life until the shaking stops. I think its because that is the strongest part of the structure at that point, not that you feel very safe there either, when everything you own is bouncing off the walls and crashing down around you. Then you clean up the mess and go back to life as usual, though I imagine at that point you have a lot less clutter and a thankfulness that you are alive.
In our lives as Christians, there are times when are lives are shaking and everything feels like it’s in turmoil, very much like an earthquake. We don’t always know why. We just know that it’s scary and confusing and you can’t always hear God clearly over the rumble and shake. But I think the scriptures give us a doorway to stand in….

Psalm 105:4 puts it like this…

“Search for the Lord and for his strength, and keep on searching.”

“When the earth quakes and its people live in turmoil, I am the one who keeps its foundation firm.”

No matter what we go through, the Lord is our firm foundation in our lives. We need to keep running to Him when everything around us is bouncing off the walls. He is our strength and place of safety. I think part of the problem is when we are in times of turmoil we run around in a panic saying “Why me?” and don’t always stop to ask God what the purpose is in what we are going through. People in California know to expect earthquakes, it’s a part of their lives. They build their houses to prepare for them, they know what to do if one comes. Trials are a part of our lives as Christians, yet we don’t expect them and aren’t always prepared when they come. Yet trials clear a lot of the “clutter” out of our lives, the things that aren’t really important, and should send us running to our place of safety, our source of strength.

“His faithful love endures forever” (Ps. 106:1)

It’s earthquake-proof. Keep holding on to Him.

With love and prayers,


First Blog- Finding God in the Whirlwind

If you've read the Old Testament, you may remember reading about Elijah's mighty victory over the prophets of Baal. Yet in the next chapter, we find him hiding in the cave . I don't know about you, but I have days where I have just HAD IT and feel like holing up in a cave for some peace and quiet myself! But God didn't leave him there, any more than He will let us hide out and feel sorry for ourselves. Let's pick up the story in the Bible, using the New Living Translation.

1 Kings 19:11-13

"Go out and stand before me on the mountain," the Lord told him. And as Elijah stood there, the Lord passed by and a mighty windstorm hit the mountain. It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind, there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake, there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And a voice said, "What are you doing here, Elijah?"

There are days that my life seems very much like the mighty windstorm (or whirlwind) in this passage, I have trouble hearing the still small voice of God amid the flurry of activities. From soccer practice to school plays to church commitments and duties of job, home and marriage, life often feels like a hurricane with brief moments of surreal silence in the midst of the storm. So in this crazy, everyday, harried world, how do I find God in the whirlwind? I can't just hide away in a cave, I need to be able to find God in the whirlwind, to be able to hold onto him when the earth quakes, I need to draw from His strength. When His refining fires are shaping my character, I need be able to hear His gentle whisper speaking to me to give me the encouragement I need.

Join me on my journey as I try to find quiet moments with God in this adventure known as everyday life. May we grow closer to the Lord and encourage each other along the way!