Posts Tagged With: rest

To the Rescue

Genesis 29:31-31:55

“O LORD, please rescue me” Genesis 32:11

Boy, I don’t know about you right now, but I can really relate to that statement! It makes me think of the song “Need You Now” by Plumb.

Sometimes we just need Him don’t we? We need to just have a moment alone with the King of kings and the LORD of lords, the Creator of the Universe. Sometimes we need to know that He is the God of angel armies. We need to know that He is faithful.

He IS faithful.

We need to know that He fights for us and not against us.

We need to know that He is for us.

God IS for us.

God is for YOU.

The night before Jacob was due to meet his brother (and the army of 400 men with him), he fought with “a man” who turned out to be God. At the end of the night the man blessed Jacob and renamed him Israel which means, “God fights”. Now in the scripture it explains that the reason Jacob was renamed Israel was because he had fought with God and with men and had won. However, every time I saw those words today I read, “God fights for you“.

God fights for YOU. And if God is for you then WHO could be against you??? I mean honestly? Who? He’s GOD. He is the Creator of EVERYTHING seen and unseen. Would He have been so foolish as to have created something that COULD conquer Him? It may be a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the Almighty God. (Hebrews 10:31) But it is a WONDERFUL thing to fall into the arms of the Almighty God! And through the blood of Jesus YOU have been given that right to flee to the breast of the One who conquered death and fought for you against the forces of evil.

Categories: 365 Life, Genesis, Season 3, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment



P.S. I will be revisiting the girls at Teen Challenge today So when you get a minute, or two, or ten, please say a prayer for us! We at Tamar Ministries are so blessed to be a part of the Teen Challenge ministry. Click here to visit their FaceBook page… hopefully! Technology has not been my friend today!

Categories: 365 Life, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Take a Break

Acts 21:37-25:12


TRUST in the LORD with all your heart and lean not in your own understanding!

“What shall I do LORD?” Acts 22:10

Is that not the question of the century or what! What’s shall I do Lord? For many of us true rest and stillness is a very difficult concept to master. For me, it is because I love feeling productive. I love the feeling of having accomplished something, or better yet many things. It makes me feel useful, valuable… important. If I’m not DOING something i feel less valuable.
Did I seriously just say that? Just looking at that sentence make me shake my head! How! How in the world can my physical activity affect my value? I mean, if a car isn’t driving me somewhere does that decrease it’s a value or ability to do so later? No. Actually, most cars are worth more if they haven’t been driven extensively and essentially worn out. Or my children. If they’re sitting and watching TV or sleeping rather than cleaning does that make them less valuable to me? What about my coffee maker? It’s job is to make coffee when I want it. I did does just that. So during those times when it’s not making coffee does it lose its value? Nope. So where in the world do we get the idea that if we’re talking a break of any length that we lose our value? Or that we’re not useful? If my coffee maker is not being used at the moment does that mean it has ceased to be a useful tool for my kitchen? If my car isn’t being driven at the moment has its ceast from being a useful way for me to get to the grocery store? Oh! Or what if it even ran out of gas which is totally happened! Has it ceased to be useful to me? By no means! Was it the car’s fault it ran out of gas, or mine?
Why do we feel so guilty about running out of gas physically or spiritually or emotionally? Why is it so hard to allow ourselves to be humans in need of a break? Why do we refuse to rest? Why do neglect to fill up our gas tanks or our water reservoir and then get angry when they run out and we’re forced to stop our movement and take a break and pray?
Prayer is our fuel and time in the word is our living water. The Lord is my strength, an ever present help in times of trouble.

Categories: 365 Life, Acts, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Tags: , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Lunch Buddies

Hee hee hee!!! I am so excited that I get to blog today! I feels like forever that I’ve been able to come on here and talk to you all!!! I have been SOOO busy getting this next Bible Study up and running and ready. There has been so much going on here behind the scenes and I am seriously on pins and needles waiting to unveil it to you! You’re gonna LOVE it! It seriously is all I can do to contain my glee in this moment, deep breath… It won’t be too much longer, I hope.

I can give you this little peek behind the curtain, the new book/Bible Study cover and title:

Waiting front cover only

Ahhhh… there’s nothing like waiting on a Bible Study about waiting right? You know you love me!

Yup, the writing is finished, the proof copy has been sent to the editor, the front cover is done, it’s so close I can almost taste it! I love being able to see the finish line don’t you!

On Fridays I go to the school to have lunch with the kids. Today, as I was walking up to the school I was wondering if Anna would, for the third week in a row, forget that I was coming and bringing her forgotten lunch and get another one before I got there ending up with three lunches for the two of us. And it just made me think of all the times when we forget that our heavenly Father is bringing something into our lives. He’s coming with something big and exciting and we forget so we work on and worry about that very same thing only to see Him coming around the corner with His version of what we’ve been working on… and it’s SO MUCH BETTER than what we did that our version pales in comparison and we just want to hide it behind our backs.

Every time I have walked into the cafeteria carrying a lunch for my daughter that I know she will love and actually eat, and see her walking to the table with a tray filled with food that I know that she will not eat, God has tapped me on the shoulder and said, “you know you do that too right?” Siiiigh…

Why do we worry and sweat over things that He’s got under control? So often we think, “Oh! This and such doesn’t feel like it’s going anywhere God must need me to do something about it. Maybe He needs my help…” No. He doesn’t need your help. He needs your TRUST. He needs for you to believe in Him to do what needs to be done that you can’t do. He needs for us to be still, silent, quiet, peaceful, calm, motionless, carefree, and know that HE is God, that He has it all under control and that when it is time for us to DO something He WILL let us know it.

Once upon a time… OK, all the time, I was worrying over my sins, I was worrying over whether or not I was doing the right thing and God stopped me and said, “I am a good Father, if you’re doing something wrong, I will tell you.”

Oh! He IS a good Father! And He DOES tell us when we’re doing something wrong or when we’re doing something right! We just have to be still enough to be able to hear Him!

Oh how I love being on this phase of writing! There’s nothing like being at the end of a season and looking back over the whole thing and seeing how it all unfolded right before your eyes but couldn’t see it until now. My season of “waiting” is over, I know it, I can feel it down to my bones. God is opening my eyes to so many things right now and it’s amazing. Time is rushing by like a freight train and the rush of wind as it passes is taking my breath away. All I can do right now is laugh. Laugh at God’s sense of humor and irony. Laugh at how perfectly it has all fit together. Laugh at how wonderful He really truly is, and know that I’ve only BARELY scratched the surface.

God’s got my back. I don’t have to worry or fear the future, because I know the One who holds it in the palm of His eternally merciful hand and He loves me enough to die for me. I am so blessed to know this God whose word always proves true. This God who proves His faithfulness to His people in so many abundant ways. This God who fills the earth with so many colors of His love that there is no way to count them all! Yes! This is MY God. This is MY Father who brings me the best lunch I could imagine, so I don’t need to worry about getting my own lunch because I know that His will be so much better in every way!

God bless you my friends! I have missed you!!!!

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This morning I woke up exhausted, too many late nights preparing for Christmas. I wrestled with myself for several minutes whether or not I should go back to bed after my husband left, the kids were still sleeping… I went back and forth, Bible study, sleep, Bible study, sleep… I weighed the consequences and possible outcomes of each and still couldn’t convince myself which direction I should go, nourish the temple or feed the soul? I sat down and opened up Streams in the Desert, one of the many devotionals I read, and it was all about a dream someone had about Jesus never coming. And then I thought of the “Footprints” poem on the wall behind me, it’s a dream as well! And then it dawned on me, you know it’s pretty hard to receive a dream like those, if you never sleep! And I know from personal experience that I dream the best when I sleep the hardest… when I’m exhausted. In Psalms 1:2-3 it says “His delight is in the law of the LORD, and on His law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whole leaf doesn’t wither. Whatever he does prospers.”

Now, I feel the need to point out that because Jesus DID come, the “law” that this verse refers to is Jesus. In Matthew 5:17-20 Jesus Himself tells us that He didn’t come to wipe out the past laws of God, but rather to complete them. The laws from the past were guidelines for healthy living, everything from food safety to relationships. None of these things have passed away since Jesus came. On the contrary, they’ve only been intensified. The Law (before Christ came) was like the pencil sketch outline on a canvas being prepared for a masterpiece. Jesus is the paint that came along and filled in all those temporarily gray pencil-lines with bold vibrant color and LIFE! The pencil lines are still there under the watercolor hues that now lie over them, but they certainly aren’t the picture. They’re not the part that you admire when you look at (or meditate on) the picture. Your eye naturally focuses on the colors that fill the lines. While the Law is still here it’s still active and applicable in our world and our lives, it’s not what saves us, it’s not what fills us it’s the color and life of Jesus that saves and fills and completes our world. Jesus IS the Law, in every sense of the word. He came to color in what no one else could. All we could do was add more gray shading, details to a formerly perfectly white canvas. The more rules humanity added to the Law, the more we added bleak gray to our world, and then Jesus came, with His paints and brushes and turned our upside-down thinking right=side-up. He is the Law on which we are to meditate. He is the bulls-eye that all of history points forward to, and all the future looks to. He is the focal point of all humanity.

How are we to meditate on Jesus – The Law – in the night though? Easy! You go to bed meditating about Him and His word. I can not tell you how many times I have gone to bed with a question on my mind and a prayer on my lips only to wake with my body in a position of praise (hands above my head) and the answer written in my heart. While my mind and body were at rest, and out-of-the-way, my soul was free to commune with the Holy Spirit without interference from my busy activities or my mind immediately rejecting everything He says because it might not be logical or the “smart” thing to do. Many times I will have a cryptic or strange dream that when prayed over and interpreted will reveal the answer to my question. God speaks to us constantly, but the business of our lives and the clutter of our minds disturbs His messages. It’s like He projects His messages on the movie screen of the still water of our souls and the more we disturb it with our motion, the more the message gets muddled. The best way to receive a clear message from God is to be routinely still, not just in our body but in our soul. To rest in His arms like that weaned child, who KNOWS that they are loved and fed and provided for in every way by their heavenly Father so they need not throw rocks of worry in the water of their souls, because God’s got it ALL under control. Every minute detail, He knows them all. For “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28) “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'” (Jeremiah 29:11)

Rest well this day, and this night, my friend. May the waters of your soul be undisturbed by rocks of worry. Rather, may you stand on THE rock, the horn of our salvation, and drink deeply from His gently flowing streams of living water. May that water fill your soul with refreshment and quench your thirst for anything less than His perfect righteousness. Jesus is the Law colored in with His perfect love that casts out fear. May His love for you shine through your darkness and color your life with the vibrance that only a child of God can claim. The vibrant life that starts with the red blood shed at the cross and sweeps across the entire blue sky with the rainbow of His promise of love poured out for the whole world. He loves the world so much that He sent His only Son to be the Way to an eternal relationship with Him. Praise be to the Living and active God who loves us with such an abandon that He is willing to go the distance and die a tortured death to show us just how much He cares for us. Jesus loves you my friend, rest in that truth today, He is calling you, by name, to come and sit with Him in His lap. Quiet your soul and be still so that you may KNOW that He is God.

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He Cares

“By the seventh day God had finished the work He had been doing; so on the seventh day He rested from all His work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it He rested from all the work of creating that He had done.” Genesis 2:2-3

Out of the two hundred sixty-seven times the word “rest” is found in the New International Version of the Bible, this is the first. Firsts and lasts are important in the Bible, they usually tell us a lot in just one short verse. This instance is no different. It absolutely thrills me that this verse is the first time that the word “work” is mentioned AND the first time the word “rest” is mentioned, coincidence? DEFINITELY NOT!!! God’s “work” of creating was finished in seven days. Do I think they were literal twenty-four hour days? Yes. Why? Because He’s GOD, what other reason do I need??? When you really think about it, it probably could have only taken Him an instant to create the entire universe, again, He’s GOD. But instead He took His time, and enjoyed the work of His hands, continually stepping back from each stage of creation to admire His work and remark emphatically “It is good”. He enjoyed what He was doing. And yet, on the seventh day, He still stopped doing it. Why? To set an example for us. I mean, you don’t honestly think He rested because He was tired do you? Remember, He’s GOD. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve done something just because my kids were watching, said something because I knew my kids would “over-hear” me. I believe this instance to be the same. God was resting as an example for us to follow, because we being, well, not God, need rest. An entire day of it every week.

Life is a journey, a very long one for most of us. One in which many rest stops are required in order to complete the journey successfully. Many people have set out to accomplish something monumental, only to fall short of their goal due to lack of rest and/or support. Human shoulders were never created to carry burdens, especially large ones for long periods of time, and neither were human hearts.

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?

And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon [the richest king Israel ever had] in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of it’s own.” Matthew 6:25-34

Yahweh God, is our Father. Jesus the Messiah is our husband. The Holy Spirit is our comforter and helper. Together these three are one God, a God who cherishes us and calls us all by name. While our worries can not add a single hour to our life, they do subtract them! There are many studies that have shown how stress is very bad for our bodies. Stress, or worry, tears at our spirits. It makes them sick, sometimes to the point of becoming physically ill in a multitude of ways. Yet ALL of this can be avoided by simply resting.

God knows what we need before we ever need it. He had only created mankind the day before and yet the very next day, before they had even had a chance to work let alone get tired, He was instituting the first Sabbath day. Boy our God is good!!! He CARES for us. He cares about the little details in our lives, like the food we eat and the clothes we wear, so why wouldn’t He care about how we rest as well? First Peter chapter five verse seven tells us to “cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.” “And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will HIMSELF restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” (1 Peter 5:10)

In Matthew seven verse seven Jesus tells us that when we ask for things, God hears us and sends answers to our prayers. They’re not always the answers we like, but they are always, without fail, the answers we need. In verse nine through eleven He explains, “Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him!” God cares for you like a Father, He wants to provide for you all the things you need… including rest!

Right now you may feel like God has forgotten or forsaken you, but that is a bold-faced lie from the father of lies himself! God tells us through the prophet Isaiah: “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! I have engraved you on the palms of my hands;” (49:15) Your name has been engraved on the palms of His hands with the nails that pierced those beautiful strong hands at Calvary. Trust me my friend, He is incapable of forgetting or ignoring you because He cares for you too much. But perhaps, you’ve been ignoring Him. His pleadings for you to slow down and notice Him, sitting in your quiet time chair waiting for you to join Him.

Do you have a spot where you routinely meet with God? A place that is set aside for that very special purpose? If not I suggest you find one, it’s amazing what a difference it can make! How just visiting that sacred spot can calm your soul, only if it’s for a brief moment. You can “still and quiet your soul; like a weaned child with its mother,” (Psalm 131:2) there. When a child is nursing its mother is its source of nourishment and therefore when it is in its mother’s arms it will fuss until it receives the milk it desires. However, a weaned child in its mother’s arms is a completely different story. Once weaned from its mother’s milk the child no longer seeks its mother’s arms for nourishment, but for company, for love, affection and comfort. So it also should be for us in our Father’s arms. We should be routinely (daily and weekly) seeking shelter from life’s storms under the wings of the Father who cares for us enough to engrave our names on His palms.

Yes, a Father like that I can find rest in! And so can you, when you seek Him you will find Him. But don’t seek Him for what He can do for you or what He can give you. Seek Him because He loves you. Seek Him because He cares for you. Seek Him because you want to know Him more as the Father, husband and comforter that He is. Cast all your cares, burdens and anxieties on Him because He cares for you! He is love, get to know that love more intimately through prayer and study. When you seek Him with all your heart, you will find Him and He will knock your socks off! He has mine! He loves you so desperately; won’t you let Him tell you how much? Give yourself permission to take some time and rest in the LORD today.

I’m too tired to trust and too tired to pray,

said I, as my overtaxed strength gave way.

The one conscious thought that my mind possessed,

Is, oh, could I just drop it all and rest.

Will God forgive me, do you suppose,

If I go right to sleep as a baby goes,

Without questioning if I may,

Without even trying to trust and pray?

Will God forgive you? Think back, dear heart,

When language to you was an unknown art,

Did your mother deny you needed rest,

Or refuse to pillow your head on her breast?

Did she let you want when you could not ask?

Did she give her child an unequal task?

Or did she cradle you in her arms,

And then guard your slumber against alarms?

Oh, how quickly a mother’s love can see,

The unconscious yearnings of infancy.

When you’ve grown too tired to trust and pray,

When overworked nature has quite given way:

Then just drop it all, and give up to rest,

As you used to do on mother’s breast,

He knows all about it – the dear Lord knows,

So just go to sleep as a baby goes;

Without even asking if you may,

God knows when His child is too tired to pray.

 He judges not solely by uttered prayer,

He knows when the yearnings of love are there.

He knows you do pray, He knows you do trust,

And He knows, too, the limits of poor, weak dust.

Oh, the wonderful sympathy of Christ,

For His chosen ones in that midnight tryst,

When He told them, “Sleep and take your rest,”

While on Him the guilt of the whole world pressed –

You have trusted your life to Him to keep,

Then don’t be afraid to go right to sleep.

    – Ella Conrad Cowherd*


* Ella Conrad Cowherd. Streams in the Desert. (Grand Rapids Michigan: Zondervan, 1997), 476.

Categories: The Crazy Mom Blog | Tags: , , , , , , ,


The LORD will guide you always; He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail. Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins and will raise up the age-old foundations; you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of streets with Dwellings. IF you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath and from doing as you please on My holy day, IF you call the Sabbath a delight and the LORD’S holy day honorable, and IF you honor it by  not going your own way, and not doing as you please or speaking idle words, THEN you will find your joy in the LORD, and I will cause you to ride on the heights of the land and to feast on the inheritance of your father Jacob. The mouth of the LORD has spoken. (Isaiah 58:11-14)

Lord, HOW do I keep my feet from breaking Your Sabbath? Honestly, I’ve never been taught. If I’ve heard sermons on it, I don’t remember them. But LORD, I know that this is important because you keep bringing it up! And I LOVE You for that!!! You truly are my heavenly husband who keeps harping at me “would you please sit down! You’re making ME tired!” You are just that wonderful! So Lord, how should I keep the Sabbath holy?

This is what the LORD says: Be careful not to carry a load on the Sabbath day or bring it through the gates of Jerusalem. Do not bring a load out of your houses or do any work on the Sabbath, but keep the Sabbath day holy, as I commanded your forefathers. Yet they did not listen or pay attention; they were stiff-necked and would not listen or respond to discipline. But IF you are careful to obey Me, declares the LORD, and bring no load through the gates of this city on the Sabbath, but keep the Sabbath day holy by not doing any work on it, THEN kings who sit on David’s throne will come through the gates of this city with their officials. They and their officials will come riding in chariots and on horses, accompanied by the men of Judah and those living in Jerusalem, and this city will be inhabited forever. People will come from the towns of Judah and the villages around Jerusalem, from the territory of Benjamin and the western foothills, from the hill country and the Negev, bringing burnt offerings, incense and thank offerings to the house of the LORD. BUT if you do not obey Me to keep the Sabbath day holy by not carrying any load as you come through the gates of Jerusalem on the Sabbath day, then I will kindle an unquenchable fire in the gates of Jerusalem that will consume her fortresses. (Jeremiah 17:21-27)

In Jeremiah 17:21 it says to “be careful not to carry a load on the Sabbath” the word “load” in Hebrew is mas’sa and according to Strongs is: a burden; specifically, tribute, or (abstractly) porterage; figuratively, an utterance, chiefly a doom, especially singing; mental, desire – burden, carry away, prophecy, x they set, song, tribute. So, if I’m reading this right then for one day every week we are to lay down our burdens, to stop carrying them around with us. We should set aside one whole specific day every week where we put aside the labor of our hands and come join You at the foot of the cross where we spend the whole day laying our physical and spiritual burdens down at Your feet asking for You to take them and bear them for us. I think You’re saying that we need to dedicate one whole day to resting in Your arms, and not JUST in the arms of the Lazy Boy in the living room in front of the TV. An entire day to rend our hearts, searching them with Your light to find any deceitfulness in them so that You may remove it from us! Lord, “blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in Him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out it’s roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; it’s leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” (Jeremiah 17:8) Lord, may I be that “man”! May I trust in You Yahweh, may my confidence be in You… my confidence IS in You. May I be like a tree planted by the water sending my roots straight to Your strengthening  streams of Living water – Your Word the Bible. Then I will not fear when trials come and will have no fear when hard times come – may I always bear much fruit for You and Your glory. Lord Jesus, I praise You and thank You that You love me so desperately that You’ve… strongly suggested… that I take an entire day every week to spend with You, our own date day! You ARE so incredibly sweet, I love You!!!


Categories: The Crazy Mom Blog | Tags: , ,

Comfort: Day 5 Spiritual Stay-cation

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-7

Last night my little baby girl Anna had an ear ache. The moment we pulled into the driveway from ballet pictures she started sobbing “my ear hurts”. And she didn’t stop whimpering about it until I put her to bed. Honestly, I figured it was the barometric pressure from the snow on it’s way and didn’t think too terribly much of her pain because I knew she was tired and really just needed to sleep. So I was encouraging her to push through her pain to get ready for bed. When she laid down her whimper turned more to tears and my heart was aching for her. I knew it hurt but there wasn’t really anything I could do for her. So I laid my hands on her little ears and prayed for her while I sang her favorite song “Jesus Loves Me”. I accidentally sang the first verse twice and by the time I got to the end of the second verse and was starting the third, she was in peaceful sleep. I lingered by her sleeping side, praying for her healing rest, staring into the still tear-stained face, that just moments ago was filled with pain and was now covered in peace. How blissful sleep can be.

It wasn’t even thirty minutes later that she started crying in her sleep. That’s when reality really started to sink in for me. She hadn’t been crying from fatigue and a little pain, she had been crying from real pain! My tough mom heart broke into a million pieces when it hit the floor. No longer aching for her it was crying out with her! I was desperate! How could I make her pain stop? I prayed with more sincerity “LORD! What can I do for her??? She’s really hurting!” His reply? “Nothing, she has to go through this.”

Her sleepy cries of pain eased momentarily and I scrambled to get ready for bed myself. I put pillows and a blanket on the couch and turned down all the lights in the living room so that when her cries rose again I could be there for her. While I couldn’t make the pain go away completely, I could hold her in her sleep, comfort her just by knowing I was enduring the pain with her. Making SURE she didn’t feel alone in her pain.

At about a quarter to nine, just as the make-shift bed on the couch was prepared, her tortured cries of pain started up again. (And I’m not exaggerating when I say tortured either, because that’s what it was, torture, for both of us.) I scurried into her room, where my own tear-filled eyes found her covers already askew from her flailing. My poor precious baby!!!!! I snatched her from her lonely bed and clung to her ever lengthening frame. Her toes, once upon a time only come to my breasts, now hanging down past my knees, swung gently back and forth as I carried her limp and exhausted body to our place of mutual rest and suffering for the night.

As we lay down belly to belly together, she snuggled her head into the familiar comfort of my chest, still sobbing, but maybe not quite as loudly as before. Sean came up behind me and just stood watching the two of us for a moment before he went out on his run. Huh, I didn’t think of it at the time, but he was possibly more tortured about all this than I was. I moved so quickly to comfort her myself that he never got a chance to even blink let alone move to help! There’s nothing like wanting to help someone and you can’t. You feel useless. (I’m sorry Beloved!) Seeing that everything was being done that could be, he turned around and went for his nightly run. A few minutes after he left Anna began writhing in pain, unconsciously kicking me and wailing. I held her tightly, letting her know “Mommy’s here” and softly praying over her head, and eventually the pain ebbed from her body, her muscles relaxed and she was at peace once again. After that her cries and writhing started lessening each time – Thank You God!

Around eleven Daddy came back into the living room. He gently touched my outside arm to wake me up and asked “Want me to take over?” His turn to help had finally arrived. He pulled back the blanket and gently lifted her from on top of me into his loving gentle arms. “She’s hot” he said, “I know” I answered. He situated himself in his recliner for the night as I headed off to our own luxuriously large bed all alone, well, with the cat.

As I snuggled myself down under the comforter I prayed for them both, that they would rest well and realized that this is precisely what Paul was talking about in 2 Corinthians 1:3-7. The God of all comfort. There are trials and pains that we just have to go through in life, for one reason or another. Things that God is using to ever so lovingly mold and shape us into the creation He wants us to be. And during those times He is desperate to comfort us, in any way that He can without ruining the purpose of the suffering. He hears our tortured cries and He starts preparing things to comfort us immediately. He moves into action immediately, He does not wait. He doesn’t even wait for us to ask Him for comfort, because many times we’re asleep to the fact that we even need it. Jesus lays His loving hand on our heads and prays for us and our complete healing. Not just the easing of the pain, but HEALING. And when we cry out, He lifts us up out of our lonely bed of suffering and moves us to a bigger bed prepared for mutual suffering. A place where He can hold us, soothe us, and pray over us all night long through our moaning, tears and fitful sleep of agony. And right at the eleventh hour, the Father comes along and tells Jesus it’s His turn now. And so the Father comes and lifts us from Jesus’ arms into His own and carries us to His throne (you gotta believe He’s got the BEST recliner in ALL of history!) where we lay with our ear pressed to His chest for the rest of the night until we wake up feeling strangely better and He asks us, “Are you ready to go back to your own bed now?” and we walk painlessly back to where we started the night. Healed and happier having slept through the whole thing… sort of.

I looked up the verse “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted”, and looked up the Greek for the word “comforted” and I am so pleased with what I found! Parakaleo is the Greek word translated as “comforted” here and it’s Strong’s definition is (a) I send for, summon, invite, (b) I beseech, entreat, beg, (c) I exhort, admonish, (d) I comfort, encourage, console. Now I don’t know about you, but when I read that definition the thing that strikes me more than anything is the personal nature of the word. I send… I beseech… I exhort… I comfort, the person speaking the “parakaleo” is the one who is personally doing the action. They’re not talking about someone else performing the action for them, THEY are the one doing it. In Matthew 5:4 where we find this verse, it isn’t just anybody saying these words, it’s Jesus Himself. Jesus was telling His disciples, and us, that when we are comforted, HE is the one doing the comforting. He is the one who sent them your way. He is the one comforting you through that other person, being His hands and feet. He is the one holding you through that dark night. He is the one wiping all your tears away from your face and making it all better.

Isn’t our God AWESOME!?! How can you not love a God like that?

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” Matthew 5:3-12

“He will swallow up death forever. The Sovereign LORD will wipe away the tears from all faces; He will remove the disgrace of His people from all the earth. The LORD has spoken. In that day they will say, ‘Surely this is our God; we trusted in Him, and He saved us. This is the LORD, we trusted in Him; let us rejoice and be glad in His salvation.” Isaiah 25: 8-9

“The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion – to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of His splendor.” Isaiah 61:1-3

“For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; He will lead them to springs of living water. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.” Revelation 7:17

“As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? My tears have been my food day and night, while men say to me all day long, ‘Where is your God?’ These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go with the multitude, leading the procession to the house of God, with shouts of joy and thansgiving among the festive throng. Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God. My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember You from the land of the Jordan, the heights of Hermon – from the Mount Mizar. Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me. By day the LORD directs His love, at night His song is with me – a prayer to the God of my life. I say to God my Rock, ‘Why have You forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?’ My bones suffer mortal agony as my foes taunt me, saying to me all day long, ‘Where is your God?’ Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God.” Psalm 42

“The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters, He restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.” Psalm 23

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Day 3 of my Spiritual Stay-cation

Well folks, the time “off” has been helping. I can honestly say that I am doing better today. Yesterday afternoon when I went to go pick up Gabe from Good News Club at school I stopped by the grocery store to pick up another two dozen eggs to replace the ones that went missing. And hey! I was in luck and they had the 18 packs that I really wanted the day before. SCORE! So I bought two, because ya know, with Christmas baking and all I would need more right?

Then when we got back home I had the kids start picking up their toys and cleaning the house while I worked on the dishes in the kitchen and got the counters almost completely cleared back off again. Hallelujah! I had some broken Christmas tree ornaments drying on one counter so I went to hang them up on the tree and I didn’t even cry when the whole tree fell over!!! I *almost* lost it, but I didn’t! YAY! That’s a sure sign that my stress levels are going down! Time with God alone really does help! Amazing!

Gabe and I decided that we should just have egg sandwiches for dinner so that we would have more time to clean the house up, that and we had lots of eggs now! Then Sean called, he had stopped on his way home and bought two dozen eggs! I about fell on the floor laughing (for real)! Now we had FIVE dozen eggs! Thank You Lord… I think. Looks like I’ll be making a LOT of divinity this year for Christmas. 🙂

Last night we decided to let the cat sleep on the end of the bed, big mistake! She scratched and scratched all night long until Sean finally kicked her out of our room, then Anna woke up at 4 AM! Why???? But you know what, it was OK, because I had taken several naps during the day while I was camped out on the couch writing so it didn’t bother me a bit and I was still able to get up at 5 bright and chipper and ready to praise the Lord. And I’ve been going strong ever since.

I have to admit that I haven’t really spent so much time in the word today as yesterday, but instead I’ve been working on getting a new blog site together. The original one at wasn’t able to provide a “subscribe” feature and this new one does! I’ve been praying about that since MAY! Hallelujah! So all day today I’ve been working on moving things over and getting settled into my new home here at

God has really been showing me a lot lately how He’s been setting all these things into place for me so that when His timing is right everything will line up and the promises He has made will come to fruition. In His timing and in His way. And I trust that. I don’t want anything that isn’t in His timing and His way, because then it’s at best still only second best. And I want His BEST for me and my family, I want His dream for us. I want His goal for us. I want His blessings and favor for us, no matter what they look like. I know that He loves me and I trust that any decision He makes will be made completely out of love for me. Period.

Have you been wondering what my Spiritual Stay-cation has looked like? Day 1 looked like shopping with my friend Kelly, Day 2 looked like sitting on the couch the whole time Gabe was at school, Day 3 has looked like sitting on the computer all day, all three days have been cutting out absolutely all things that don’t entail feeding my family (which I have made as minimalistic as possible). I called off Bible study today and Monday night, and volunteering at the school too. I have made myself and my stress-level a priority, if something starts to frustrate me I stop it and walk away. I have turned the ringer off of my phone, it’s still on and I’m checking it periodically, but it’s amazing to me how the lack of those message tones has been so amazingly peaceful! I’ve come to realize that they’re like little voices saying “Pay attention to ME! I need your immediate attention!” No, they DON’T need my immediate attention, my family and my God need my immediate attention everyone else will just have to wait until I get around to answering your messages! God bless a silent phone! Basically I have set these seven days aside as a Sabbath rest week. My own little vacation with God on the mountain of Shalom peace. Lord, thank You for strongly suggesting that I do this, I can’t thank You enough for the rest I have been finding in letting these things go by the wayside for a time! I pray that next Monday come slowly! I am really enjoying this private time with You!!! I LOVE YOU LORD!!!!

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I, Daniel, was exhausted and lay ill for several days. Then I got up and went about the king’s business. I was appalled by the vision; it was beyond understanding. Daniel 8:21

Thank You Lord! Someone who understands!!! I too am EXHAUSTED. I have been quite successfully burning my life like a taper candle lit from both ends. I have been moving and working and living non-stop for as long as I can remember! As a mom there is no end in sight to the “To Do” list we keep in our heads, it just keeps growing and truly never ends! As mothers we give and give and give until there’s simply nothing left to give of ourselves and yet somehow we still find ways to keep giving. Lately we’ve been so busy I have had no time to cook, so we’ve been eating a lot of fast food lately. My husband has been commenting about how he’s missing homemade food. And I keep replying “Me too!” Too bad no one is willing to come to my house, cook a nice big dinner for us (so that it’s my house that smells yummy), will serve us at our table and clean everything up afterward! I don’t know that such angels exist, but LORD, if You’d like to send one my way about now I’d really appreciate it! And while You’re at it someone to clean my house from top to bottom and manage my family too… You know, Daniel took “several days” off from work because he was ill from the tremendous vision You had given him. Can I call in sick to life for a few days too?

Now, don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my life. I love the ups and downs of the rollercoaster I live on. But as the ups are way up there, the downs are way down there too! And ever so close together. I realized a few days ago that I don’t have a Sabbath day. I don’t have an official day where I truly do nothing all day. I’ve been living under the very Christian (as opposed to legalistic Jewish) philosophy of a break here and a break there equal a Sabbath rest and that’s OK too. But I’m living the reality that this philosophy doesn’t work! Period! Because you know what happens? You start out fine and you take your “break” every day – however long it may be. But then life creeps in, something happens and one day your break gets preempted by an emergency of some kind, say the cat throws up on your favorite rug or your child is sick. So you skip your break that day. And then a few days later something else happens during your break time. And then before you know it a month has gone by since you even thought about taking a break let alone actually took one! And you think to yourself, “Hmmmmm….. maybe that’s why I’ve been so tired lately.”

Are you like me? Are you able to relate at all to what I’m saying? Honestly, part of me wants you to say “Yes” just so I can have some company in my misery and yet the other part of me wants you to say “No” so that I can ask you what you’ve done to make that answer even possible! Cause right now, in this moment of absolute exhaustion, I could really use some helpful everyday tips!

Siiiiiigh….. I digress, and distress… it looks like this may be just the reason that one of the Ten Commandments is “Remember the Sabbath DAY by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or your maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but He rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” (Exodus 20:8-11)

God commands an entire day out of every week to be holy – or set aside – for REST. ZERO work allowed. PERIOD. In fact, I was just noticing that of all the Ten Commandments, keeping the Sabbath DAY holy uses more ink than any of the other nine commandments. The only commandment that even comes close is not making idols for yourselves. Which I find interesting because when you think about it, by expecting yourself to perform all seven days of the week instead of six, you’re expecting more from yourself than God even does! Even HE took an entire day off (Genesis 1:31-2:3), and it’s not like He actually needed it! HE’S GOD! So who do we think we are to not need that day of rest? God? HA! Yeah right! That, in a way, is declaring ourselves gods, which is idolatry! YIKES! Father, please forgive me! No wonder I’m exhausted! I’m trying to be God! Geez!

Ha, you know, in a really strange way, that takes a load off my shoulders to know that I’m not God. Huh! I had no idea that’s what I was doing! Sabbath day HERE I COME!!! Are you kidding me?!? Where have you been all my life? I’m jumpin’ into my jammies, throwing in a frozen pizza for dinner, serving it on paper plates, curling up on the couch with a good book and a blanket!!! I’ll see you tomorrow folks!

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