Dealing with hard times · death · God's Will

When You’re Waiting On God

What are little boys made of?
What are little boys made of?
Snips and snails
And puppy-dogs’ tails,
That’s what little boys are made of.

For one of our little grandsons, that poem is so accurate. He loves any kind of animal, and will warm up to whatever dog or cat is around, no matter its hesitant nature towards children. He has a way with them, and a heart that melts to love and care for this furry friend. His brother is far more resistant and quite leery about animals, perhaps knowing how quickly one can turn on an unsuspecting child.

Last year, their parents did the loving thing and purchased a puppy for their animal-loving son and his twin brother. Beasley was welcomed into their home as a wiggling, barking, ever-moving Labradoodle. His teeth were never satisfied with the likes of store-bought teethers. He would nip and snip at the boys when they were running through the yard. Our animal lover thought this was hilarious; his brother was traumatized by it. All kinds of dog-training methods were used, but over time the puppy continued to howl and bite, and the frightened grandson, became more and more upset.

Continue reading “When You’re Waiting On God”
Biblical Womanhood · fellowship with God · God's Will · Prayer

A Heart for Prayer

This is a continuation of the review of the book, A Woman After God’s Own Heart, but Elizabeth George

Whenever spring arrives, you will find me taking bags full of items that are being sent out to donate.  They are things that are no longer of use to me.  They are weighing me down.  The truth is, however, that those bags typically sit in my garage for a long time before they finally get hauled away.  I know they need to go. I know it will feel good to get rid of them.  I know it’s the best thing, but I keep putting it off, until finally I’ve had enough and the task finally gets done! It feels so good to unclutter my home! I always wonder why I didn’t do it sooner!

While that is so freeing to me, the act of taking my load of sin, burdens and requests to the Lord is even better! We often carry that load around with us and the burden of it all is weighty and deadening to our spiritual growth.

Most Christians delay praying.  We put it off and resist it! We make excuses as to why we don’t pray.  Satan doesn’t want us to have that fellowship with the Lord, and we listen to his lies until we finally are at a breaking point and we pour out our heart to God.  The result is better than we could ever imagine. 

In her book, A Woman After God’s Own Heart, Elizabeth George shares seven blessings of having a fervent prayer life.  When I read these, I wondered why we put it off, why we don’t pray more.  Look at to these incredible blessings ~

  1. A deeper relationship with God. How can we have a relationship with the God who saved us if we don’t communicate with Him?  Just as you and I long for fellowship with our husband or friends, God longs to enjoy fellowship and communion with Him.  That happens when we pray. It’s not out of obligation, but because of a relationship. I Peter 5:7
    As a camel kneels before his master to have him remove his burden, so kneel and let the Master take your  burden.
  2. Greater purity. As we talk with God, the Spirit of God will reveal sin in our lives.  That leads us to confessing that sin and getting it right with Him.  Elizabeth shared about being convicted of gossip. She began to make it a real matter of prayer that God would help her defeat this sin.  “I faced my sin regularly in prayer. Sin led to confession, which let to purging.”  
  3. Confidence in Making decisions. – As we face decisions that need to be made, giving them to the Lord and making it a true matter of prayer will give us wisdom about what to do.  God will neve lead us to do something that is contrary to His word.  So as we pray about the decision, He will direct us in His truth.  We need to pray about everything.  Elizabeth lives by this mantra ~
    No decision without prayer.
    NO DECISION?  None.  “Should I go here?” 
    Should I say yes to this invitation?” 
    As we are directed by the Lord in prayer, we can have confidence regarding those choices. When God has led us to say Yes to giving the devotion at a baby shower, we won’t dread it or be afraid, because we remember that He led us to make that decision, and He will fulfill all the good pleasure of His will!
  4. Improved Relationships. Making specific prayer for those people closest to us will strengthen our relationships with them.  How does this happen?
    1. You can’t think about yourself and others at the same time.  
    2. You can’t hate the person you are praying for.  Jesus instructed us to pray for our enemies.  Matt 5:44 and God changes our hearts as we do so.
    3. You cannot neglect the person you are praying for. As we pray, we find ourselves involved in those people’s lives.
  5. Contentment. As we give to the Lord our wants, realizing that He will keep His promises to provide our needs, we will learn that “If He didn’t meet it, we didn’t need it. Paul said he was initiated into the secret place of contentment.  This secret place is the place of prayer.  If you’re praying about something and want it so badly, take it to your time of prayer. 
  6. God-confidence. As you face your own inadequacies, prayer will give you confidence in what He can do through you.  You will learn to trust Him. 
  7. The ministry of prayer. No matter if you have physical strength to go and do other ministries, you can always have a ministry of prayer. You don’t need to go anywhere, you don’t need anything except a heart to bring burdens to our God Who promises to hear us when we call out to Him. So pray for others! Pray about your own burdens! You be the one who reaches out to pray with a friend over the phone, or in your home. Be the intercessor for others because of your heart to pray.

Are you a praying woman? Or are you carrying around the load and weight of your burdens rather than taking them to the Lord? You’ll be so free if you’ll spend time sharing your heart with God. You’ll also wonder why you didn’t do this sooner. God wants fellowship with you. Call out to Him. Draw near. He will draw near to you.

Do you have a prayer journal? I have offered a pdf for my favorite prayer journal in past. I’m still happy to send it for free to anyone who emails me here at Refreshherblog@gmail.com.

You can find the previous chapter of the review of A woman After God’s Own Heart here.

Biblical Womanhood · Christian growth · God's Will · spiritual growth

How Do We Have a Hot Heart for God?

I am going through one of my favorite books…again.  A Woman After God’s Own Heart, by Elizabeth George.  When I was a young mom, I began reading this book every other year because I found it so helpful for growth in every area of my life!
Now I have the blessing of going through it with a woman who is in the same stage of life as when I began studying these truths that Elizabeth carefully penned.  These principles are life-changing.  For that reason, I thought it would be helpful for me to share highlights from the chapters as I review them. I won’t give all the details, but will share the important truths from each chapter. I pray that you’ll find them as helpful as I have over these years.

Discipline – nothing great happens without it, and that includes spiritual growth.  We don’t grow by our grit, but by the steady commitment to being a woman who stays in God’s Word.  It cannot be a casual approach that studies when we have time, or only when there is a crisis.  But how do we have the discipline to be a woman after God’s heart?

We must choose God at every opportunity.

In Luke 10 we read the beloved story of Jesus visiting Mary and Martha. Mary chose to stop all activity and listen to the Lord. She ceased all other activity so she could do just that. 

Perhaps we need to ask – 

  1. What activity in my life is keeping me moving, anxious and unable to listen to the voice of the Lord in His Word?
  2. How do I find myself “interrupting Him” as Martha did?  

It’s hard to hear and heed God’s Word without the discipline to sit still and listen. We must make the choice to choose the one thing that is needed. Then after we’ve given it to the Lord, He takes over.  He does the Psalm 32:8 thing ~

I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye.”

Each day, commit yourself afresh and anew to the Lord. Give Him your time, your possessions and your home – even if they are few, yourself – even as weak as you are, and ESPECIALLY because of your weakness!! Give him your husband and each child. Name each one. If you are not praying for your husband, who is? If you are not praying for your child, who will?

Andrew Murray said, God is ready to assume full responsibility for the life wholly yielded to Him.

Elizabeth says to “cultivate a hot heart for God.” Cultivate is to “Foster the growth of,” “To improve by labor.”To have a hot heart for God is to go against the culture of this world where we are only encouraged to “have it your way!”  But we have to do the work necessary to have that heart that is burning for Christ! 

I’m always intrigued to read obituaries in the paper.  When I see that a Christian has died, I always wonder how they are described by their family.  “She loved the beach” “She loved to bake cakes for others.” “She was the best grandmother.” I pray I can be remembered as a woman who had a hot heart for the Lord!

How do you want to be remembered? If it’s your desire to be a woman who follows God and has a heart for Him, then you must make a daily decision to choose God’s ways, make a commitment of yourself to the Lord daily, and then a cultivate a heart of spiritual fervency.

What you’re doing with your life today is contributing to how you will be remembered. Make today count.

Family life · God's Will · Home making

Maytag, Messes and Meals

I have never built a home, yet I am a home builder. That doesn’t make sense? It’s true! As a matter of fact, if you live in a home with at least one other person, you are a home-builder, too.

Every wise woman builds her house,

but the foolish plucks it down with her hands.

Proverbs 14:1

That verse reminds us that we are either building up or tearing down.

Recently I have had a couple of conversations about what is expected as far as the condition of our homes. Women have wondered,

Does it really matter that my home is a mess?”
“How clean and orderly does a home really need to be?


The first place we run to for answers to these questions and for our building instructions is the Giver of the home…our loving God!

Titus 2 tells us…

3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;

4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home,


Wise home-building ALL starts with the condition of our heart. The verse above said, The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness. That simply means our behavior should mirror sacred character. You and I as home-builders should reflect the character of our God. That means…

  • We must spend time with the Lord in His Word so we will know Him. We must spend more time with Him than we do the world’s influence!
  • We must spend time in prayer so we will have the same heart for our home that He has for it! As we pray for those in our home, God can give us insight and wisdom about their needs that we would never understand otherwise.
  • We must have a heart of praise to the Giver of the home. Yes, praise Him for the laundry, the spilled milk and yet another meal we have to prepare. Let’s put it this way,

    We should praise God for Maytag, messes and meals!

    They all are from the Lord and He only gives good gifts!

It’s then that we build under God’s influence and guidance and we truly have a right heart for the home He has given us. Otherwise we will be confused by all the ideas the world shouts in our ears.

So my fellow home builders, make sure your heart is in the right place. Have a heart for your home. If you’re struggling with that, tell the Lord. Ask Him to give you His heart for this ministry. He will. His Word reminds us…

Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain. Psalm 127:1

You won’t be building and working with empty results! You’re going to see progress and blessing – yes, even with your Maytag, messes and meals!

If you could ask an older woman for help in one area of your home, where would it be?

Refresh your heart about your home-building!