Christian Life · Entertainment · Social media

A Healthy Balance of Entertainment

Image result for my fitness pal

For the last 50 days or so, I have been putting my meals into My Fitness Pal – an online calorie counter. I type in the foods I’m eating at each meal, and it tells me how many calories and nutrients are in each food.  If I go over the “allotted” carbs, sugars or sodium, for example, it will tell me what number I was supposed to stay under.  It keeps me from eating that extra snack I might be hungry for or the dessert that is tempting me. It’s really a good thing because it keeps me eating what is good, and it keeps it in healthy portions.  

In another part of my appetites, I enjoy a good fictional book. I love a funny Andy Griffith Episode.  I have several You Tube Channels that I watch.  I have Instagram and Facebook accounts.  At times these “outlets” can overwhelm me…

if I let them.

If I don’t keep a check on them.

My heart’s inclination would be to “munch away” on Insta-stories,” or be lured by the fancies of my entertainment.  It’s up to me to reign it in so that I may fill my heart with more that is edifying and will push me closer to the Lord.

The Spirit of God guides my entertainment like My Fitness Pal guides my food.  You see, if I allow the worldly to outweigh that which would edify, my emotions will be flighty. My temperament is unpredictable.  My decisions are based on feelings instead of Truth.  Oh, how I need God’s Spirit to lead me to His Word so that I will be spiritually healthy! When I tip the scale and absorb more of the world’s philosophy than God’s thoughts, I’m asking for trouble.  I pray for the Lord to

Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation;
on thee do I wait all the day.
Psalm 25:5

When I listen to the guidance of My Fitness Pal, I smile when I look at the scales.  On a much higher plane, when I listen to God’s Spirit tugging at my heart to binge less on the world, I smile when I see the results of godly thinking and actions replacing my fleshly ones.  I don’t always win this battle, but it’s one I want to keep fighting!

Do you find yourself devouring more of the world’s thinking than you do spiritual nourishment?  Ask the Lord to help you have a healthy balance; it’s a prayer He will answer!

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Christian Life · fellowship with God · forgiveness

The Danger of Drifting

Rafts aren’t the only thing that can drift – so can a boat. I came across this article in People Magazine . You won’t believe the terror two teenage boys experienced when their boat drifted. Read on:
On Sunday morning, April 24, Troy Driscoll, 15, and his best friend, Josh Long, 17, both high school students from North Charleston, S.C., paddled out from Sullivans Island near their home for a day of fishing in a 15-ft. boat. Had they listened to the radio, they would have heard that bad weather was approaching.
Josh Long – We wanted to put the boat between the beach and a sand bar, but we weren’t out 20 minutes when the riptide pulled us out. We tried to put the anchor down, but it wouldn’t catch. We just drifted farther and farther away. Hours went by. We tried to wave people down, but nobody saw us. The last thing I saw was the towers on shore that lead cargo ships in. By dark we couldn’t see a thing. The next morning there was no land in sight. All we could do was pray.
By 10 p.m., when the boys—who left Josh’s cell phone in his truck at a dock and had no radio or emergency equipment—hadn’t returned, their frantic parents called the Coast Guard.

Eddie Long, Josh’s father – It was the hardest night of my life, walking that beach, knowing that my son and Troy were out there somewhere. It was cold, and the waves picked up.
Josh – We were soaking wet, clinging to each other, trying to keep warm. We’d doze off, but the waves kept crashing into the boat, washing over us, so we couldn’t ever get to sleep.

Troy Driscoll – During the day it got so hot, we took a couple of dips to cool off. But then the sharks came around, and we didn’t go in the water anymore.
Josh – Far from shore, the water turns clear, like blue Gatorade. Troy begged me, “Please, let me drink just a little.” I said, “If you drink it, you’ll die.” Then one day it began to drizzle. I had my mouth wide open to catch drops, but it didn’t rain hard enough. I started licking the water from the deck.
Troy – Josh woke up screaming that we were at the store and had to buy some Mountain Dew. I was like, “Bro, we’re out in the middle of the water, and there’s no Mountain Dew.” I was so hungry I ate a jellyfish and waited overnight to see if it would kill me. It didn’t. They’re slimy, gushy things, but I ate about 100 of them.
Josh – Troy was so hungry he wanted to cut off a finger and eat it. At one point, he said, “Please, help me get out of here or kill me.” I said, “I can’t do that.”
The Coast Guard searched the ocean using boats, helicopters, airplanes and the help of recreational boaters. But at sunset on Tuesday, April 26, after 2½ days had passed with no sign of the boys, the rescue mission became a recovery operation.
Eddie Long – They told us that in a week to 10 days, the bodies would become gaseous and rise to the surface. I went out on the bridge with binoculars, but I didn’t go out on a boat. If there was a body, I didn’t want to remember my son that way. By Saturday, April 30, seven days after they set out, the boys were drifting seven miles off Cape Fear and 111 miles from where they had launched.

Josh – Something about Saturday morning was different. When the sun came up, it was a beautiful color. I saw a rainbow off to the left, and there were dolphins playing all around the boat. Later that day two fishermen spotted something distant in the water.

Ben Degutis, 70 – At first, I didn’t know what it was. As we got closer, I could see people waving, and holy mackerel, it was two young guys in this tiny boat. One was yelling, “Thank God!”
Eddie Long – I was outside and heard a commotion. They gave me the phone, and Josh said, “I miss you, Daddy.”
Tony Driscoll, Troy’s dad – When I finally saw Troy, it was like him being born all over again. The joy in my heart was that huge.

During their ordeal Long lost 30 lbs. and Driscoll was hospitalized for three days for second-degree burns on his face and feet.
Driscoll – I’ll go out again fishing, for sure—in a boat with two motors.

Long – While we were out there we dreamed about the biggest sundae you could imagine—the ultimate sundae. Troy and I are going to meet at an ice cream place and have that sundae.
Boats aren’t the only thing that can drift – so can people. In my years as a believer and follower of the Lord Jesus Christ, I have seen many people do the very same thing in their spiritual lives that Troy and Josh did in their boat. Out of a love for God, believers get in their boat and go to church, serve the Lord, have their daily devotions, testify in prayer meeting, share the Gospel with an unbeliever, and attend Bible study. Everything is okay – they are safe near the shore with anchor firmly in place.
Then one day, ignoring the warnings they’ve heard, they begin to drift – they miss a service here and there. Then Bible study or prayer meeting seems like a huge interruption in their already busy week, so they stop attending. They begin to eat things they would never have thought of eating – slimy television shows that promote immorality, homosexuality, drinking, and many other unbiblical “jellyfish.” Things that are harmful look appealing and they begin to “drink” of its waters, all the while the sharks are circling their boat. Like the saltwater, bitterness may be a poison they drink. One sip of unforgiveness keeps them coming back for more. They have now drifted to Cape Fear!
Praise the Lord, though, the Holy Spirit sees them in their drifted state, and He sends believers who care to fish near enough to their drifted place to spot them. They don’t leave them there – they come to them with a warm coat (God’s love), nourishing food (the Word of God), and balm for their wounds (forgiveness of our God).  I John 1:9 is claimed and obeyed. Soon, they’re feeling better, feet planted solidly on the ground with the wisdom to keep anchor so they’ll drift no more.
Not everyone who drifts out in the ocean is rescued. It’s not that the Lord isn’t showing them the Light from the lighthouse, but because they are unwilling to admit that they are indeed drifting. If this post has offended you, let me say, dear Friend, it’s probably because you are drifting. “Great peace have they which love thy law, and nothing shall offend them.” Psalm 119:165


Drifting takes place a little at a time. If you can still detect the shoreline, row back home before you find yourself in dangerous waters. There’s a huge Sunday to enjoy with others who will rejoice at your tender heart and your safe return!

Isaiah 43:1,2 But now thus saith the LORD that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine.When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.

Because I care,
Christian Life · Motherhood · Prayer

How To Pray in the Busy Season of Life

When Susanna Wesley, the mother of ten children wanted to pray, she simply pulled her apron over her head.  Her family knew that when they saw her with her head covered they were not to disturb her.  I’d say she was serious about prayer!  She took whatever measures needed to find the time to talk to the Lord.

We’re all busy women, but in certain seasons, especially when children are home, it can be difficult to find the uninterrupted time to really pray.  I’d like to suggest a way for you to have this time with God if you’re in this busy season of life.  I’m going to share a few suggestions in the following video.  I trust it will challenge you to implement these ideas into your day.

Is there one suggestion that was shared that you could implement?

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Christian Life · Encouragement · eternal · trials

Change Your View

wp-1516731367120-1058527903.jpgBecause my husband had a birthday this week, we took a couple of days to go on a trip to Hot Springs, Virginia to celebrate!  Oh, the blessing this change of view has given our busy lives! We loved the gorgeous setting of the Homestead Resort, sitting in sun-filled lobbies, window seats, and also the love seat in our own room.  The change of view has been a blessing.

There are times that our spiritual eyes need a change of view, too.  Discouragements come to all of us.  It’s part of living in a sinful world with sinful words, responses and actions.  Sometimes those all belong to our own heart; sometimes they come from others.  I’m never surprised at my own wrong actions/reactions, but though I shouldn’t be surprised when it comes from others (because others are sinners, just like me), it does come as a blow.

Have you been there?

Someone does or says something that you just weren’t expectitng and it’s a hard pill to swallow.  But as a believer of the Lord Jesus Christ, we are reminded that we don’t wrestle with flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers, against rulers of the darkness of this world.  My enemy is deeper than the person from whom the blow came. Ephesians 6 reminds of this truth. It’s no surprise to me that after having recently hearing my husband preach on these verses, and after having taught this passage afterwards in my Adult Bible Fellowship, that soon after the battle became very apparent.  Then, oh, the wrestling in my own heart through the night!  The “Why?”  “How could they” thoughts pierced my sleep, leaving me to toss and turn in the darkness of the room and also in my mind.

But when morning came, I went to that very passage in Ephesians 6 and repeated the armor that I wear –

  • The Belt of Truth – What Truth would I meditate on today?
  • The Breastplate of Righteousness – How would I respond towards this that would show a righteous heart?
  • Feet shod with the preparation of the Gospel of Peace – Would I be ready today to share the Gospel, or will I dwell on the war around me instead?
  • The Shield of Faith – What promises of God’s Word could I claim today?
  • The Helmet of Salvation – Will I remember all I am in Christ because I’m His child?  How will this change the way I respond?
  • The Sword of the Spirit – What verses will I meditate on to remind myself (and my enemy, Satan) of the victory Christ has won for me? 

Choosing to meditate on that passage gave me a whole different view!  It was like the sunshine that was pouring into the library in which I was blessed to sit! It refreshed me in the battle because I was dressed properly to fight it!

If discouragement is your view today, do yourself the blessing of changing your view to all that is yours if you are a child of God.  It will give you an eternal perspective that will equip you to live in victory today!

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Christian Life · Prayer

How To Have a Strong Prayer Life When It Seems So Hard

I won’t lie – pastors get down – really down when the attendance falls off on the night a Prayer Meeting is scheduled.  It happens often.  You announce you’re going to gather just to pray, and the crowd thins as though the fire alarm had just gone off.  My husband will get in the car and I know what question is coming my way…

Why won’t people gather to pray?”

I’ve been thinking about that and I’d like to address that question with three answers.  How about watching this video and tell me if you agree?

What keeps you from praying?  What makes it difficult to be consistent and fervent? Do you agree with the reasons I stated in the video?  Is your prayer life all it could be, or do you need to make some changes?

The download of my prayer journal is still available to anyone who will contact me via the email on my contact page.

Let’s stay on our knees, friends.  God answers the prayer of the righteous! Proverbs 15:29

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Christian Life · trials · waiting

Dealing With the Dark, Void Situations

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I love the sunshine so much that the minute I wake up in the morning, the curtains in my bedroom get thrown wide open!  I want the those sunbeams to stream in! Even on a cloudy day, just the light from the outside is a welcomed change from the darkness within my room.

But what do we do when there’s darkness in our hearts, via a relationship or a circumstance that we cannot change?  It could be as trivial as frustrations, like when I was attempting to write this post and spent a good deal of time editing and rewriting. It was scheduled and ready for posting, but when I went to preview my writing, it was GONE!  What?  After a good couple of hours, it’s nowhere to be found?

I could not change this.  So after stopping and giving this darkness (trouble) this to the Lord, I realized that there must be a reason for this “mistake.”  Maybe it was just that I take time again to call on His Name. Doing so brought light (truth) to my heart – it was, indeed, like throwing open my bedroom curtains.

A lost blog post is trivial, but what about darkness and emptiness in a relationship? There’s a void and distance there that you would love to fill, but you cannot change the other person’s heart.

What about the grief felt when dealing with the consequences of sin – yours or someone whose life touches yours?

Or the sorrow of death or sickness?

We have to go back to the beginning –

Gen 1:2, 3  And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.

When there was NOTHING but emptiness and darkness, with only a word, God changed it all into beauty and fullness.

Light, sun, moon, trees, flowers, sky, birds, fish, animals and man and woman were added to the emptiness and it was no longer void – it was FULL.

Who but God could do that?!

No one.

He longs to do the same with our dark and empty circumstances! It all starts when we know that we need His Son as our Savior.  He brings light from the darkness of sin and gives forgiveness and His presence for eternity.

His presence starts the moment we trust Him!  Now all those “dark” situations turn to me towards my God who longs to bring light and life to all these matters!  How?

  • Making me realize Who He is
    • Creator
    • Gracious
    • Kind
    • Loving
    • Able…
  • Making me fall on my knees before Him to ask that He will change this darkness and emptiness for His glory.
  • Making this dependence on Him a daily habit that transforms me into His likeness.

Yes, even losing a post on a blog post can be used to transform me into His image.  As I learn to call, to wait, to trust, to know He is sovereign, I can be more like Christ, if I allow Him to calm my troubled heart and look for Him to make beauty from my darkness.

What dark situation sleeps under your pillow and awakens you with a start?  What “empty” circumstance is causing you to need His light and abundance?  Thank God for that situation today, then call out to Him and wait for Him to transform it…and you!

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Christian Life · obedience

Seven Questions Before You Take Your Next Step

muck a.jpg

I’ll never forget the funny experience from a few years back.  I was in Nova Scotia to speak at a Ladies’ Retreat – at a special place in my heart with dear ladies I’ve grown to love  (Hello to my Canadian friends!).  It was early spring, and when I left Tennessee it was nice enough to wear white jeans for the journey.  I knew it would still be winter in Canada, so I packed appropriate clothing for my time there, however, my luggage didn’t arrive when I did!

The first difficulty I had to deal with was the “Muck” – the deep, wells of mud that needed to be traversed in order to go from my lodging to any other building on the campsite.  Remember, I was wearing WHITE JEANS.  One of the sweet ladies there loaned me a pair of red galoshes.  So, I tucked my pants into a pair of high socks, slipped my feet into that way-too-big pair of galoshes and headed out the door of my cabin in order to make my way over to the main building where the retreat would take place.  I’ve probably never taken such cautious steps as I did that day, attempting to keep my white pants white, and my feet under me, rather than over my head!

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It was slippery.

It was wet.

It was hilarious!

But I carefully and slowly planted each step into the tracks made by others before me, and somehow I managed to make it to my destination unspotted from the brownish/blackish slime!

That picture of careful footing is truly the attitude and heart I need to have every day, and especially when making decisions.  Ephesians 5:15 tells us to Walk circumspectly (wisely). Proverbs 4:26 reminds us to Ponder the path of our feet.  If you’re at a crossroads and seeking God’s will for choices, here are seven questions that are certainly not exhaustive, but a place where you might start searching to walk wisely, giving careful attention to where you’re putting your foot.

  1. Will this step be one of obedience or disobedience?
  2. Will this step help or hinder my testimony as a child of God?
  3. Will this step help or hinder others from knowing my God?
  4. Will this step push me closer to the Lord or farther away?
  5. Would I invite Jesus to join me in this step, or would I be ashamed?
  6. Could I ask a godly person to pray with me about this step?
  7. Would I turn away from this if it was revealed to me as a wrong choice?

We all want to make it to our destination unspotted from the muck of ungodly choices, and the best part is that the Lord has gone before us to guide our feet.  Don’t stress over the difficulty of the journey; God is there and will keep your steps on the right path as you place one foot in front of the other in obedience to His revealed will.  As a matter of fact, the best part is that this drawing close to God is truly part of the journey.

Are you carefully making wise, godly choices TODAY?

P.S. Don’t wear white jeans in Canada until June!  Lesson learned! Ha!

Walk wisely,

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