All Done Trying

My son and grand-children were visiting last week. One morning as I was putting away dishes and Brandon was working on a project at the kitchen table, grandson Charlie was caught up in a mad frenzy trying to snag something off the top of the fridge.

With the height of a six-year old, he just couldn’t quite master the challenge. I watched amused, as he jumped as high as he could, threw a towel, and swished a broom – trying to capture his prize. Finally in exasperation he said . . .

Daddy can you tell me how to figure this out?

The response to Charlie . . .

Well, you can go get that stool . . . or you can just ask your daddy for help.

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DROP THE DISHES!   You see, I’m always looking for spiritual lessons in the middle of practical living. And this one shouted so loudly, it caught me off guard.

How many times do I work myself into a frenzy trying to . . . figure, reason, explain, justify, solve, fix, worry it through, and make things right? Trying as hard as I can – never lands me anywhere except in a tizzy of exhaustion and discouragement. I eventually come around, but why does it continue to take me so long to ask my Daddy for help?

There are some “things on top of my fridge” right now; some things I’m desperately trying to figure out and fix. I’ve jumped as high as I can, thrown the towel, and swished the broom. My Father in all His compassion, has allowed me to try to do it myself. He’s watched in love (for He knows my heart), as I’ve taken hold of my inner resources trying to resolve the situations that are keeping me agitated.

 And still . . .

He allows me to either go get the stool or ask Him for help. That’s His way, you see. He never forces me to take what is available to me, His child. He allows ME to make the choice, and when I choose HIM, He rushes to help!

Well I’m done with trying. I’ve decided to skip that “get the stool” step, and go straight to my Father, Who alone is the Answer to the agitations I’m experiencing. And now as I make that choice, I’m experiencing His Peace.  I don’t know how He’ll answer – but I know He will!

 . . .But I am with you; that is all you need. My power shows up best in weak people.

(God’s words to Paul & to us – 2 Corinthians 12:9 TLB)


Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” (Isaiah 30:21)

I went to bed last night with this verse on my lips and in my head. Truth is, I’ve considered this promise from God many times during the past weeks. There’s a particular decision I’m poised to make, but I’m not hearing the GO AHEAD from my Father. Last night in that semi-conscious place between wake and sleep, I realized something significant. Each time I rolled over, I said . . .

I’m turning to the right, and I’m peaceful. I’m turning to the left, and I’m peaceful.

Now I don’t know how many times I shifted and turned during the night. I also don’t know if I spoke the words aloud, but they certainly shouted loud inside my heart.

But God had more . .

Later in the morning I got His message loud and clear!

You haven’t heard my voice yet because it is not yet time to make the decision. When that time comes you’ll clearly hear . . . This is the way; walk in it.

I smiled with a burden lifted. My part is to be still and peaceful. When the time comes to move, He’ll speak and I WILL hear His voice.


I love reading words spoken by Jesus. For me, it’s a worship experience, imagining being there in His earthly presence and hearing Him speak. I often think about watching His expressions and body language as He interacted with those around Him. Oh, how I would have loved standing close to the physical Jesus and hearing The Voice that certainly spoke with such gentle authority.

Matthew 8 records an encounter between Jesus and an officer in the Roman army. Jesus had been on the mountain teaching. As He came down, crowds began to follow Him. Probably anyone in the crowd that day was surprised as the centurion (who was also Gentile) approached Jesus. While others surely considered him unworthy, Jesus responded with compassion.

Have YOU ever felt unworthy to approach Jesus? Unworthy because of incompetence, faithlessness, or sin? I have. And I’m humbly thankful to know that the compassion of Jesus is not reserved for a select few, but for everyone – even me. The HOPE He gives is based on His Worthiness, not ours.

Try to capture the scene unfolding as you read the following passage.

Now when Jesus entered Capernaum, a centurion came to Him, pleading with Him, saying, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, dreadfully tormented.” And Jesus said to him, “I will come and heal him.” The centurion answered and said, “Lord, I am not worthy that you should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to this one, ‘Go’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” When Jesus heard it, He marveled, and said to those who followed, “Assuredly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel!”

(Matthew 8:5-10 NKJV)

When Jesus heard it, He marveled. Some other translations say, He was amazed.

I long to have the kind of faith that amazes God.

In fact, I’m becoming more and more caught up in that longing. I trust Him, and I want Him to know it! Even though I have a particular answer in mind, I want Him to marvel when I faithfully trust His response – even before I know what it is.

And, I’m noticing that the longing to please Him is - gradually - surpassing the longing to have my prayer answered my way . . .

Wow, how did He do that!?

For we are the sweet fragrance of Christ which ascends to God . . . (2 Corinthians 2:15 AMP)

Together In Faith,




Is Life More Than You Can Handle?

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Have YOU ever said . . . Well I KNOW God won’t give me more than I can handle.

If you have, I’m pretty sure it’s because you think that line is in the Bible.

But guess what . . . It’s not!

Truth is, God WILL give you more than you can handle - and all because He wants you to stop the handling, and let Him take over.

The thought of God not giving us any more than we can manage actually comes from a verse about temptation.

 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. (1Corinthians 10:13)

Reading this verse in context will help you understand that it’s referring to falling into sin like Israel did. It’s about temptation not overtaking us because God will always provide a way of escape.

So what about these times when we experience the crushing weight of stress and pressure – when we feel we can’t take ONE MORE THING or we’ll explode?

Well, check out Paul’s later writing.

We do not want you to be uninformed … about the troubles we experienced …We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God…He has delivered us…and He will deliver us again. On Him we have set our hope that He will continue to deliver us. (2 Corinthians 1:8-10)

Are you going through things far beyond your ability to endure?

If so, God is bringing you to the place of relying on Him, and not yourself.

All through the Bible you can read how God took His people through situations that were humanly impossible to overcome. And God’s power always showed up! And we can be assured of the same.

Years ago, reading from The Message paraphrase, I etched the words of Jesus from Matthew 5:3 into my heart. It has brought me much comfort and security during those times when I think I can’t handle ONE MORE THING.

You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and His rule.

Take heart my friend. When life’s too much, God is more than enough!


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I’ve dealt with bouts of physical pain throughout the years. Jaws, neck, and knees with their respective surgeries have each given me practice and NEW FOCUS into dealing with pain.

During each of those seasons I discovered that “pressing into the pain” actually became the catalyst to jumpstart relief. It may work differently for others, but as I sunk into the agony and allowed myself to experience it at its worst, I soon realized there was nowhere to go except UP! It’s as if I allowed myself to rebound off the bottom and hold on to the hope that freedom from pain would eventually be realized.

I’ve transferred this practice to my seasons of WAITING.

For most people waiting is difficult, and depending upon its duration, it can be sheer agony. We live in a fast paced world that values quick decision making and speedy resolution to problems. In short . . .

We don’t know how to wait, and we simply don’t see the value of it.

But God does!

He uses waiting to slow us down, humble us, and teach us how to depend upon Him.

So what’s my WAITING M.O.?

I sink into the pain of it, all the while talking to God and describing every ounce of my angst. I welcome His quick answer, but lean into what I know He’s trying to teach me during the process of waiting on Him.

As my friend Pam commented yesterday…

The very process of waiting means there’s an outcome, a light at the end of the tunnel!

And Friend when you belong to God, that “light of an outcome” is His promise for you.

Can you trust Him enough to value the waiting time? Can you simply rebound off the angst of the unknown, allowing Him to lift you into His certainty of your future in Him?

Let’s do it together, just like the psalmist . . .

 I wait patiently for the LORD, my soul expectantly waits, and in His word do I hope. (Psalm 130:5 Amplified Bible)

And AMEN to that!







During my times of suffering it brings me great encouragement to know that God understands and cares. Jesus Who was fully God, was also fully human. And as a human He suffered.

I know that’s true because of His outpouring on the night before His crucifixion. In His weak human nature which He willingly took on for our sake, His soul was in anguish. When His hour of betrayal was at hand, He cried out to the Father . . .

My soul is swallowed up in sorrow – to the point of death. (Mark 14:34 HCSB)

At that moment He was weak, fearful, and longing for the company of those closest to Him. He was not ashamed to express the suffering He felt openly, to those He loved.

What comfort this brings to me during those moments when I can’t seem to pull myself up by my spiritual bootstraps. And when I feel less than cheerful about bearing up under the weight of adversity, I know He gets it.

So when I hurt, I fall into the hurt. And then, I move straightforward into rest of the prayer of my Lord . . .

Nevertheless, not what I will, but what You will. (Mark 14:36 HCSB)

For the glory of His name, may we patiently endure seasons of suffering. May we remember He understands, for He’s been there. May we not discount the fact that He is allowing this particular heartache, and will see us through. 

Finally, may we never yield to despair but joyfully align ourselves with His perfect will.

Rejoice always. Pray continually. Give thanks in every situation because this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 CEB)

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Have you ever had the kind of hurt that burrows way down to the deepest part of your soul, and then just sits there? It’s a silent type of suffering - one that hurts more perhaps, than the ones known to others. It’s silent because you just don’t feel you can share it. If you did, you’d be exposing yourself. Then your issue would become more a topic of gossip fodder perhaps, than one leading to prayerful outreach from others.

I believe that silent suffering is the suffering closest to God’s heart. For it’s during those deep moments of anguish that the soul is poised to tap into His mercy and grace.

When nobody cares, He does.

When there’s nowhere to turn, He’s there.

When no one else knows, He’s over every detail.

This morning as I read through The Beatitudes in Matthew 5, I was struck with that place of silent suffering. And I realized that Jesus gets it. He gets every morsel of the angst, sadness, remorse, confusion, and unsettling emotions of the suffering place, however it looks in your life. My epiphany came at the moment I realized that at the beginning of every low place . . . is the blessed place!

Blessed are the poor in spirit.

Blessed are those who mourn.

Blessed are those who are persecuted for doing right.

Blessed are you when people insult you because you follow Me.

Friend, take a moment and realize that Jesus is with you in the middle of your suffering. Draw near to Him, allowing His comfort to touch your heart and ease your pain.

He know. He cares. He blesses . . . as you turn to Him.

“The LORD is near the brokenhearted; He saves those crushed in spirit.” - (Psalm 34:18 HCSB)




I’ve thought a lot about joy lately, how to share it and how to keep it stirred up inside of me. Thinking about bringing joy to God has encouraged me to behave in ways I know would please Him. I love a challenge, and especially one that makes me a better person.

I also love TEAMWORK. That’s why I’m tossing this challenge right back to YOU. Below you’ll find the steps for joining in. I hope you’ll embrace this little summons to joy, allowing it to attack some negative thinking (at least for a day, maybe longer).

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Several years ago the truth I discovered in Psalm 91:1 transformed my thinking and changed my life.

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall remain stable and fixed under the shadow of the Almighty. (Psalm91:1 Amplified)

Stable and fixed is certainly the cry of my heart. And it’s not just about me. Being more peaceful on the inside helps me be a better wife, mother, grandmother, and friend. And . . . being cool, calm, and collected even helps me accomplish more for the Lord.

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