Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Thy Will

I don't know about you but sometimes it's hard for me not to get caught up 
in the WHAT IF'S in and around my life. 

What if that medical diagnosis is cancer?
What if that relationship can't be repaired?
What if that marriage can't be saved?
What if they lose their house?
What if they can't get pregnant?
What if they prodigal child doesn't return?

But that is NOT what God calls us to do. 
He calls us to pray and trust and give all our worries and concerns to Him.
We are to place our lives, our worries, our circumstances in His hands. 
To remember that HE is preeminent over all our circumstances. 
He is God and I am His child, dependent on Him.

Colossians 3:15 says: 
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Fear is a Bully

Read this in my devotion (Fear Not by Max Lucado) today- such truth! 

Oversize and rude, fear is unwilling to share the heart with happiness. 
Happiness complies. 

Do you ever see the two together? 
Can one be happy and afraid at the same time? 
Clear thinking and afraid? 
Confident and afraid?
Merciful and afraid? 

Fear is the big bully in the high school hallway: brash, loud, and unproductive. 
For all the noise fear makes and room it takes, fear does little good.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

February Scripture Writing Plan: Peace

Happy almost February! 

I felt very strongly led to do a topical plan over PEACE this month-
given the lack of peace that we seem to have in our world lately.
I made the plan 31 days and plan to do that with
 all topical plans in the future so that they can be done any month-
not just the month I write them for.

Friday, January 27, 2017

In case you need a reminder this morning.....
"If God had a refrigerator, your picture would be on it. 
If He had a wallet, your photo would be in it. 
He sends you flowers every spring and a sunrise every morning... 
Face it, friend. He is crazy about you!...
You weren't an accident. You weren't mass produced. 
You aren't an assembly-line product. 
You were deliberately planned, specifically gifted, 
and lovingly positioned on the earth by the Master Craftsman!"
-Max Lucado

{If you have never read the book You are Special by Max Lucado, 
take 8 minutes and watch the video below. You ARE Special!}

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Bring it All To the Table

I don't know about you but I'm often guilty of NOT
taking my burdens and worries to the Lord- 
simply because I feel like in the scheme of things they
are truly minor or trivial or insignificant. 
That my little issues and worries are so silly 
in light of major health issues and losses those around me are facing. 

But that's NOT what the Lord says. 

Phillipains 4:6 says..

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, 
with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

I read this in Fear Not by Max Lucado yesterday morning and loved it. 

My favorite sentence: 

Jesus doesn't condemn legitimate concern for responsibilities 
but rather the continuous mind-set that dismisses God's presence.

God loves us so and He wants us to bring EVERY burden and concern and worry to Him in prayer.
Even those that seems silly or insignificant. 
Even those that may turn out to be selfish. 
ALL of them. 

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Prayer Request Printables

I'm a firm believer in the power of prayer. 
One of my favorite verses on prayer is Jame 5:16 
and I love it in The Message translation: 
Make this your common practice: Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you can live together whole and healed. The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with. 

I had a sweet reader ask recently if I'd make a prayer request printable 
to match the scripture writing plans and I was happy to do so!

I couldn't decide on just one format so I came up with four to share with her...and you! 

Monday, January 23, 2017

What I'm Reading Right Now

I love to read and I read a LOT. 
I love both fiction and non-fiction & am usually reading several books at once. 

Right now I'm reading a bunch of non-fiction books that are AWESOME!

In case you are looking for a new book to read, here's what I'm reading right now...

Sunday, January 22, 2017

God of Details

God is truly a God of details and for that I am so very thankful! 
This morning I woke with a super stinky headache & my sweet hubby has bronchitis
 & so we stayed home from church.

I happened to open Facebook on my iPad right about the time our church starts a
nd saw that for the first time our church service was on Facebook Live!
 I don't believe in coincidences- not only did I get to attend church in my pj's from home 
BUT they sang a song that I so needed to hear this morning! 
(Don't have a church to watch online? Check out mine- Central Baptist HERE
We would love for you to join us!)

During my brain tumor journey the song and phrase that I clung to like no other was: 
God is Able. 
He reminded me of this truth over and over and over again during those scary months.

When I clicked on Facebook live this am, what song was just starting? 
God is Able! 
Thankful for a God who loves me so that He provides exactly 
what I need, exactly when I need it!

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Beautiful Things

This morning I listened to the song Beautiful Things by Gungor and loved the lyrics (posted below) so much that I decided to find out where the inspiration for the song came from. 
It's such a beautiful song that reminds us that regardless of our daily circumstances we need to remember that one day all of the angst & suffering 
we have now will be made NEW!
 God is present even in our difficulties!

I read an article where Gungor said: 
"My wife Lisa and I wrote the song together based on experiences at our local church. We were seeing our friends going through suffering and pain. This song is an expression of hope that God will make beautiful things out of the dust in our lives, and God will somehow use us, use our obedience and love, our feeble human effort, and build Himself a kingdom. I see that God is using suffering to bring us closer to Him."

The verses used as inspiration were Isaiah 2:4 and Revelation 21:4-5

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

You make me new, You are making me new
You make me new, You are making me new

Sweet Blessings on FB

Even though it's been suggested many times I never started
a Facebook page for Sweet Blessings 
(for fear that I wouldn't have time to keep up with it & that there really wouldn't be enough folks interested) 
instead just linking to my personal Facebook page- until NOW!

Lately I have been overwhelmed with friend requests 
& never seem to be able to keep up with them. 
Currently I have 593 pending requests. 

So I decided that it was time to give folks a place to easily find the scripture plans and 
blog posts on FB- plus a great place for me to share awesome 
blog posts, books, videos, etc that I find on a daily basis. 

So if you'd like to follow along, you can find Sweet Blessings on Facebook HERE

Happy Weekend friends!

Courage Scripture Writing Plan CORRECTION

So I don't know about you but I am FAR
 from perfect and make mistakes all the time. 
I mess up.
Big and oh so often.

If you are doing the Courage Scripture Writing Plan this month than you are 
going to notice on the 22nd that I made a mistake.

The verses for the 22nd are the same verses for 1st. 
This wasn't intentional- just an oversight on my part.
(Truth: I was hurrying to post the Courage plan 
and didn't have my sweet proofreading friend check it. Haste makes waste!)
I apologize and will replace the linked version with a corrected plan soon.

For the 22nd you can...
write 2 Corinthians 12: 9-10 in a different translation 
or pick a favorite set of verses to write!

Thank you for understanding and grace! 

Friday, January 20, 2017

Fear is a Liar

I am crazy fearful. 
I worry about everything. 

It’s something I’ve always struggled with but it seems the older I get, the more fearful I have become. I think it’s because I’ve lived more life and seen so much brokenness and 
sadness and witnessed so many horrible things happen. 
 I know so many precious friends who have lost children, so many who have battled illnesses and addictions, watched so many families explode, seen first-hand so many heartaches and losses 
and conflict that it’s hard NOT to worry because I know how awful life can be. 

I so often stay awake at night 
(thankful to have concealer to cover the massive bags under my eyes- at least partially) 
worrying about everything from a snarky comment that someone left me on social media (Do I respond? If so what do I say? Maybe I should just stop all social media?), to did I pour enough love into my sweet girl while she was growing up (Oh how I pray I did), to a friend who is struggling with a burden so heavy I’m not sure how she is carrying it (& wondering what I can do to help her), to the health of myself and 
those I love (& pondering what I can do to keep them healthy & happy for a long, long time), 
to a million other things- both big and small, real and imagined. 

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Parenting Is Hard

Parenting is hard & beautiful. 

Recently the amazing and fabulous 
Ann Voskamp posted the following on Facebook

I loved it so and shared with several friends that I know are 
walking through some difficult & painful times with their children 
who they love so very much.  

I loved Ann's post because it's a reminder that
we are not alone and holy work IS hard work!

I created a printable of this quote for my friends who 
might need to print it out and keep it is a daily reminder.