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A Year in the Spiritual Life... Discover Your Purpose

A Year in the Spiritual Life... Discover Your Purpose: June 2012


The Value of Distraction- Part Four of Prioritize Your Life Series

I cannot tell you how many times I have set down at my desk to write and something distracts me. It may be an e-mail, a Tweet, a text, or a Facebook post. Since I work at home, it could also be one of my children needing something, my Mother-in-Law wanting to talk, or my dog needing to go out. 

Distractions happen. 

These are the small things, and like the old adage, I try not to sweat the small things. What about the big things? 

What about a lost job, or a failed friendship? What about a sick child or a church split? These can be HUGE distractions. 

These things need to be addressed and even handled. These distractions (read test and trials) may make your priorities take a back seat FOR A MOMENT, but the reward of going through them may be greater than you think when they first rear their ugly head. 

James says this: “My brothers and sisters think of the various tests you encounter as occasions for joy. After all, you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance. Let this endurance complete its work so that you may be fully mature, complete, and lacking in nothing.”(CEB Version) 

Priorities are Standards 

Priorities are standards. They are the things we hold in high regard. Our focus however can shift. Focus should be fluid. 

Think of driving a car. 

Your priorities in a car are: 

1. Arrive at your destination 
2. Drive Safely 
3. Obey Traffic Laws 

Your hands and feet are fully engaged in the tasks of steering and accelerating/braking. Your eyes however are roaming, fluidly, back and forth. They send signals to your brain that tell your hands and feet what to do. They see the car that is pulling out of McD’s drive-thru and they see the red light up ahead. They notice the baby in the back is gearing up for a raging fit and they see the toddler peeling the tint off the car window. 

Now, you could see those things as a distraction to your first priority, “arrive at your destination” or you could see these things as an opportunity to practice your skills as a driver and “drive safely”. 

The Value of Distraction

Sometimes distractions are worth it. Sometimes they are the thing that teaches us new things. Sometimes distractions are the way God reaches us when we need a little nudge of correction or redirection. 

Your priority remains the same. It will always be there. Sometimes it is not about where you are going, as much as how you get there. 

Enjoy the ride. 

How do you handle distractions?

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"X" Marks the Spot - Part Three in the Prioritize Your Life Series

Let’s go treasure hunting! 

Really, that is what life is all about right? Looking for those things that few have but we all want: the “jewels” of life. 

A great relationship, a good career, and a memorable life are just a few of the “jewels” we chase. 

What if I told you that obtaining these things are possible? What if I said, it all depends on you?  

"Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." Matthew 6:19-21 

A Focus on Priorities 

Earlier this week we talked about how to develop priorities. Now we need to talk about applying our priorities. 

For me, my optimum list looks like this: (Yours may be different) 

· God 
· Myself 
· My husband 
· My kids 
· My friends 
· My career 
· My ministry 
· My finances 

These are the “jewels” in my treasure. 


Now What? 

Once your list of priorities done, there is that moment (at least for me) of “now what”? What is the next step? 

The next step is action statements followed by…you guessed it…ACTION! 

Action statements are like words of affirmation. These are little notes to yourself that allow you to hone your focus to surgical precision. 

Here is an example of a few of my Action Statements. (hint: all statements should prompt you to “do” something) 

Friends: I AM supportive, caring, and wise. I speak into my friends lives with love and honesty. I pray for my friends. I rejoice with them, I cry with them, and I hold a banner of love and safety over them. No matter the circumstances I (sometimes gently and sometimes with great passion) always point them back to Jesus. 

My Career as a Writer: I am a writer. I write every day. I write about Jesus, and I write about life. I write for myself and I write for others. I guest post on other blogs, I read constantly to hone my skills. I seek relationships that allow me to grow as a writer. First I seek mentors. Secondly, I seek to mentor. I give away my gift. I am a generous writer. I write to illuminate the solutions to life’s issues, not stir up strife or cause discord. I write as a career and as a ministry. 

These are just examples. Do you see how to write your Action Statement? It needs to be in first person present tense. Did I lose you? Ok then, just remember to write it with statements of action “I do” rather than “I will do”. 

Now go live those statements. Following the examples above it would look like this for me: when I hang with friends, I pray with them, support them, and love them. When I am at my desk, I don’t spend hours goofing off on games and Facebook. I actually write! 

Do the work! 

This is the map to your treasure, now you have to dig in and discover your best life now. Priorities are just one step on the treasure map but without them, you will never find the X that marks the spot for your treasure! 

Have you made your priorities list yet? Are there any differences that surprised you when you got done? 

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Priorities Perfected Part Two in the Prioritize Your Life Series

Today this post goes up later than usual. 

You know why? 

Because today I went to a funeral of a man so loved and honored that it took from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. to say goodbye. 

People had wonderful things to say about him. He was honored by neighbors, community leaders, and everyday men and woman. Pastors were begging for the honor of conducting the service, because this man was so amazing in life. 

His name was Luther L. Davis and he was someone I barely knew, yet his life and testimony reached hundreds of people. 

As person after person got up to share stories of Brother Davis’ faithfulness, his love, his service to God and his service to the people God called him to love, tears streamed down my face. 

At one point my pastor, who had conducted the bulk of the service, asked me “You didn't know Brother “D” very well did you?” 

My answer was this: “No, but you did, you loved him, and because of that, I loved him and wanted to honor him for what he meant to you.” 

What a life. He impacted people so profoundly that by acquaintance he was influential. 

Brother Luther Lloyd Davis 89 years old. 

The most poignant and awe inspiring thing said today was by my pastor as he eulogized Brother Davis. 

In 1958 Brother Davis changed my life forever, and I wasn't born until 1961. That year Brother Davis made a profession of faith and he never looked back. He served, he gave, he loved. He will be missed.” 

Think about that. 

What a legacy. 

As I talked to people after the service people said over and over in one way or another that Brother Davis was a good man, a Godly man, and a man worth knowing. He impacted and imprinted people for Jesus wherever he went. 

What kind of legacy will you leave behind?

In Michael Hyatt's book, Creating Your Personal Life Plan, he asks “What will they say when I am dead?” Michael goes on to explore this idea in the context of relationships and how that impacts his priorities. 

(If you have not read this book, I hope you go to and subscribe so you can download it for free. It is a wonderful book. ) 

Michael says “This is an incredibly powerful question. To answer it, you have to “fast forward” to the end of your life and look back. This exercise forces you to think about the things that matter most.” 

Obviously, Brother Davis did things right somewhere along the way. To be honored in such a heartfelt way and to leave such a reach legacy of love and service behind means he had his priorities in order. 

He chose God first, his wife, then his church (he had no children of his own) then his community. He walked out these priorities every day by his acts of love and service. 

Colossians 3:23 “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men” 

This was the key to this man’s legacy. He lived out loud for God and loved people all along the way. 

As a man with the “keys” to the church in his 50-something years of service at my church, Brother Davis was a fixture. As a way to honor him, and to remind us to strive to be better servants, the pastor gave us each a single key. 

It unlocked no doors. 

No one walked away as a winner of a new truck. 

The key just reminds us that in order to leave a legacy like Luther L. Davis, we have to serve God first. 

Love God, Love people, and serve others. What a perfect example of priorities perfected! 

Was there ever a Brother Davis in your life?

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Like Your Life More - Part One in the Prioritize Your Life Series

Priorities matter. 

But how do you organize your priorities in a way that makes your life make sense? 

Like you, I have gone round and round on this question in different stages of my life, always thinking that this time I have “it” right. 

Priorities are a matter of balance and counterbalance. We must be resolute in our priorities, but we need to allow room for growth and change. 

How do we develop priorities? 

Priorities are more than goals. Priorities are the manifestation of your Point of View combined with your actions. 

Personal core values are things you truly believe (consciously or subconsciously) that create your unique point of view. Everyone has a point of view, and as Christians we should have a personal point of view that is biblical in origin. 

When our beliefs and our actions (you know, the things that you actually do, not necessarily the things you intended to do) combine we begin placing value on different aspects of our lives and with or without intention we develop priorities. 

Priorities answer this question: What is important to you? 

Step 1: Self-Evaluation 

Now comes the hard part: taking a nice hard long look at where we are in our life. Grab a pen and paper. You will need it for this next part. Look at your life in these areas: 

· Faith 
· Personal Growth (Self) 
· Marriage 
· Children/Family 
· Friendships 
· Career 
· Finances 
· Ministry 
· Health 

Now List them in order of the most important for you AS THEY REALLY ARE, not how you want them to be. 

Now beside each one write one thing you want to change in that area of your life. If one of the above is not that important to you, take it off your list. If you think I missed something, add that to your list. 

Once you have done that, ask yourself this: What would it take to make those changes a reality in a year? In six months? In 90 days? In 30 days? Right Now? 

This honest assessment of our priorities allows us to rank the different parts of our lives as we truly live them, so we can see if and where changes need to be made. 

A Word of Caution 

Rearranging our lives in a total priorities makeover can be more harmful than good if we make drastic changes all at once. The key is to make incremental, purposeful and targeted changes over time. This will lead to a more consistent result of positive change. 

Step 2: The Revised List 

Okay, so now what? Now, you re-write the list. Write each one in order from MOST important to you to LEAST important. I can hear you now- “They are all important, I can’t do that! What if I hurt one of my priorities feelings?” 

Well, maybe not that last part, but you cringed a little when I said LEAST. 

The truth of the matter is that something is going to be the low man on the totem pole. The fact is that if it made your list, then it is IMPORTANT enough to make a priority in the first place. Don’t worry on list placement as much as priority goal setting. 

This list is what you want your priorities to be in the near future. 

Once you have it re-written, remember that question I said to ask? “What would make this change a reality?” 

Write your answer to that question for each category next to each newly ranked priority. 

This is the thing you focus on making true. 

Here is what part of my revised list looks like. 

Step 3: Implementation 

You have made a list; you have checked it twice, now the fun begins. (That was sarcasm, and if you did not read it with a sarcastic voice, do me a favor and read it again.) 

No, all kidding aside, this is not an easy process. Why? Because living according to priorities requires living with intention. Purposing in your heart to follow through on goals and standards is not a natural thing to do. 

Our very nature is to rebel from rules and regulations. This is part of the curse and the fall of man. We are human and that is the state of the world. 

As you work every day toward your goals, read over this revised list. It should take a few seconds. No more, no less. Keep the vision for your life before you. 

“Where there is no vision, the people perish” Proverbs 29:18a

(Hint: I put mine on a post it and stuck it to my bathroom mirror so I can see it every morning!) 

Now, as you make your way through your day check to see if your actions are lining up with your new priorities. Make notes to yourself (mental will do, but I love to write stuff down in my phone or in a journal to refer to later). 

If after a week you see that you have not really progressed the way you wanted, take that list out again and re-ask “What would make this change a reality?” Tweak as needed. 

This is a process. There is no quick and easy shortcut. You have to do the work. I realize that will not make me popular, but I do not write this so you will like me, but so you will like your LIFE more

So what is the hardest part of setting priorities for you?

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Friends Through Thick and Thin

Photo Credit: Creative Commons

Are your relationship ready to go through thick and thin or mediocre and thin? 

Think about that.

 Mediocre and thin. 

As we have explored friendship in the last few weeks, we have looked at ways to Be a Better Friend and what characteristics we look for in friends. What about the quality of the friendships you already have? 

Greater love hath no man than this that a man lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13  

What does laying aside and laying down our lives look like? What does it mean to give above and beyond ourselves to others? The Bible says to prefer others above ourselves. 

What Does A Quality Relationship Look Like?

There are three things a quality relationship will do. 

1. A quality relationship adds to us: it is not about the "take, take, take", but the give and bless. It gives emotionally, physically and spiritually. 

2. A quality relationship is not stressful. Save the drama for your mama! It should be easy to hang with your friends and being yourself should be natural. If you feel on eggshells all the time, something is wrong! 

3. A quality relationship is secure. There are moments in every relationship when people disagree. A quality relationship allows room for peaceful disagreement and swift resolution to problems. 

In The Message Ephesians 4:3 says this: “…but steadily, pouring yourselves out for each other in acts of love, alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences.” 

These kinds of people add value to our lives. They are not full of drama and angst, but are strong, secure and giving. 

We should be a good friend to others as well.

“A man that hath friends must show himself friendly, and there is a friend that sticks closer than a brother” Proverbs 18:24

Life is not all about what you can get, but what you can give. If you want relationships that last, ones with real meaning and bolster you in times of trouble, then you need to be a good friend. 

Examine your relationships. Are they one-sided? Do some things need to change? What can you do to make them better? By examining our friendships we can build relationships that will last through the thick and the thin. 

No more mediocre relationships for me. What about you? 

Are you a good friend? 

Share your comments below.

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How to be a Better Friend in 3 Steps

"Conversations" by Jason Schukltz Photo Creative Commons

Conversations in my life often inspire me. 

I was telling a couple of my friends I need a tee-shirt that says “Disclaimer: This conversation may be used later on my blog”. 

They laughed. Somewhat nervously. 

Nothing is Sacred

Life is about more than just our ministries or work, but sometimes I find myself looking around with one thought in mind: “How can I glean something here for the blog?” Since this blog is my ministry, it can become pretty all consuming. In the first days of MySpace and Facebook, this was a problem for some people too. Perhaps it still is for a few people. There is no filter on what people share on the internet these days. Nothing is sacred or private anymore. 

Take me for instance. My life is filled with fodder for the blog. I have 2 teenage girls who constantly do strange and wacky stuff I could turn into writing gold if I did not care about how they felt. I have considered it once or twice, but so far have abstained. I mean really- they have done some really funny stuff- it would be so easy. 

Then there are the ups and downs with friends, the ins and outs of marriage, and my life as a daughter-in-law whose mother-in-law lives two rooms over. Yet, I cannot take advantage of these relationships by constantly looking for antidotes for a blog. 

I cannot take advantage. 

I do not want to be that person. The one people have to be careful what they say or how they say it because they don’t want it on the internet for the world to see. I want to be the mother and the wife. I need to be the friend that anyone can talk to and that people feel safe with. 

I need to be this way because my peer to peer relationships are more important than written words on a page. I never want to be labeled as a “User”. 

Our friends and family should always feel like they got more poured into them than was taken out. This is what I strive for every time I am with other people. I do not always live up to this standard, but I try nonetheless. 

Be a Better Friend

You may not be a writer, but the principle is the same. It is, after all, more blessed to give than receive. 

Here are three steps to becoming a better friend. 

Step 1) Give- your time, your attention, your love, your service, your goods, and yes, sometimes your money. Give (not loan) to others without the expectation of receiving anything in return. When we hold out our hands to give and someone is blessed by that gift, then our hands and our hearts are open to receive. This is just how it works. 

Step 2) Leave them better than you found them. Speak into their lives with love and purpose. Always point the way back to Jesus. Do not worry whether they hear it all the time, but always speak the truth in love. 

Step 3) Communicate honestly. Transparency is paramount. When you make a mistake, own up to it. They will respect you more if you admit to being flawed. It also helps if Jesus is shining brighter than you. (That way we can see more of Him through the cracks in your pot) 

With these three things in mind, your peer to peer relationships will be more fruitful and satisfying and if by chance you get a funny story to tell along the way, then all the better to blog with…right? I kid, I kid. 

What do you look for in a friend?

Found the Marbles I always love to find new blogs. You can look for one by clicking on this icon! Have fun! 

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What Do You Think About Priorities?

The Problem

Priorities can be tricky. Why? Well, because we aren't always honest about where our priorities and values are. 

Photo Credit: Creative Commons

It is pretty simple to say “I always put God first”, but reality may be different. In reality we may only acknowledge God at church or with our Christian friends. 

What about the value and time you spend on yourself? Is it wrong to make yourself a priority? 

Where does your spouse fit into your life? How would a functioning, healthy, stable and emotionally satisfying relationship fuel you? Are there steps you can take to send your marriage to the next level? 

What would your relationship with your kids look like if they were given the right leadership by you because your priorities are set in order? Do you have questions about where your kids fit in? Have you placed too high a priority on your kids? Is there such a thing? 

What about friends? Are they important? What should your peer to peer relationships look like? What if you really don't have any real friends, will that affect the other areas of your life? How do you choose friends? How do you make new friends? What if you are not a people person? These questions have answers. 

I want to begin a new series soon on priorities, but I need your help. I want you to help write it. That's right. I want you to help me write for you. 


I don't think so. 

I want to know what you think and feel about priorities. How do you view priorities? What order should your priorities be in? 

Do you have questions about priorities? 

I want to address things that matter. I believe priorities matter. I want to give you information you need that helps you in a very real way. 

There will be two ways you can help. 

1. Leave a comment.
Below is a comment section. Don't see it? Try clicking on the title of this post and then scroll down or click on the highlighted word that says comment below. Once you have a comment box open, all you have to do is ask. Fire away. You can share your name, your website information, or be as anonymous as you want. Just remember to hit the “Publish” button when you are done. Easy, right? 

2. You can leave me an e-mail. This is a more private way to communicate and will allow you to safely ask the most intimate question. If you submit this way, I will only use your name if you state I can in your e-mail. I will not sell your e-mail or spam you with junk. 

This project will begin soon, but it won't be as good as it can be with out you. So what are you waiting for? What questions do you have about priorities? 

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How to Overcome the If-only's and What-if's

Photo Credit: Creative Commons

I have a problem. 

I want to write some sweet short story that will describe how I feel right now, or perhaps a scathing tirade on the sanctity of marriage and the heartbreak of divorce, but I cannot bring myself to do it. 


Because my heart is too busy breaking. 

My friend, Darla*, who in the last year has pulled farther and farther away from me, has left her husband, filed for divorce and let her life fall to shambles. Speaking to her husband the other day was painful and sad because I know what that marriage could have been, and now it lies on the edge of ruin. 

Of course, I have no control over her actions, especially since she and I have not been as close as we once were, but this makes me wonder, was I a good friend when we were close? Could I have helped more? 

This kind of thinking can go two ways. 

1. It can lead to a productive self-assessment of my heart and actions and lead me to make positive changes going forward in other relationships or 

2. It can lead to a guilt ridden pity party filled with if only’s. 

So I am going to choose the first option. 


Self-assessment is a critical part of personal growth. We cruise through life with blinders on if we never really examine ourselves. Self-assessment is crucial to figuring out ways in which we can improve our lives and it requires three things: honesty, a light (the Word), and a broom (A contrite heart). 


Call a spade a spade. I was not a good friend to Darla. I was extremely worldly and way too free with my behavior when I was with her. If I were to be honest I can say I was a bad influence at times. We were friends for about four years. For the first year we were good. The second year we began to take on each other’s offences (another post for another day) and instead of applying the word to our lives we began to revert back to pre-Christ attitudes about church, the people at church and all things spiritual. 

This attitude was prevalent for the next few years. Then, about a year ago, I began to walk back to God and she didn't. She told me almost a year ago she was considering leaving her husband. I told her she was going down a wrong path. I reminded her of the Word and I pointed her toward counseling and Jesus. She was not happy with my advice. We grew apart. Soon she wouldn't even return my phone calls. 

The Light 

Let’s shine some light on this. The word says In Proverbs “The godly give good advice to their friends; the wicked lead them astray.” I was not a good friend to Darla in the last few years of our relationship. Proverbs 27:5 also says “A truly good friend will openly correct you” In the end, I tried to be a better friend, and it was not welcomed. 

Later in the same chapter of Proverbs it says “Just as iron sharpens iron, a person sharpens the character of his friend.” 

This is the standard for my friendships now. I need to be iron in their lives and they need to be iron for me. We should hold each other up to the standard of the word and learn from one another how to better walk with Christ. 

A Broom 

It is time to sweep clean my old heart and repent. Father please forgive me for being a bad friend. Now is the time where I do not live in condemnation of the “would have should have could have” combos but in the grace that God gives all those that ask for forgiveness. 

This grace is a beautiful place full of peace and rest. Here God can gently speak love and mercy and I can learn that there is hope for me and hope for Darla too. 

Here I cut out the soul ties left behind by my friendship with Darla and I sweep them out. I will always be open to a returning relationship with her, but by the standards of Proverbs 27: iron sharpens iron. 

Here I ask for wisdom to build myself up, so that if Darla returns I can welcome her with the gentleness and love she deserves and through that love, win her back to Christ. 

Moving Forward 

I will not live in the if-only's and the what-if's for the rest of my life. Moving forward will not be easy. I am grieving not just my friend, but her marriage, her choices, and on behalf of her children. I just hope that the lessons I learn through this can make me a better friend in the future to those women God brings in my path. 

Have you ever had a friendship change because of your faith?

If you enjoyed this post, you may also like: Child of Divorce, Child of God-My Story, A Crisis in the Body of Christ, and The 3 Keys to Rebooting Your Life After Divorce

*The name of my friend has been changed to protect her family's privacy and out of respect for her husband and children. 

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How to be Extraordinary in the Face of "WHY"


Why is there such death and violence in the world? Why do the rich get richer and the poor get poorer? Why is there violence against children and women?

Why in this modern age is there such a thing as slavery? Why did my loved one get Alzheimer’s? Why is my friend battling cancer? Why? Why? 

This is a question that haunts so many people, especially when many believe that God is supposed to be a good and righteous God. They cannot reconcile their ideas of God to their sense of right and wrong. 

If you have asked why before, then you are in good company. 

That's right.

 It is okay to question God. 

Habakkuk did. 

Habakkuk was a priest and prophet during the time of Jeremiah and Daniel. He saw the violence and sin around him and he was confused. 

In Habakkuk 1:2-4 the prophet asks: 

Lord, how long will I call for help and you not listen? I cry out to you, “Violence!” But you don’t deliver us. Why do you show me injustice and look at anguish so that devastation and violence are before me? There is strife, and conflict abounds. The Instruction is ineffective; justice does not endure because the wicked surround the righteous. Justice becomes warped.  

Have you ever been there? I have. I have felt lost and devastated by bad news and wondered “why”. I have seen those pictures of children around the world who are orphaned, hungry, cold, and dying and thought, "why"? 

When my bills are piling up and my bank balance is in the negative, I have asked why. 

When I see my nation declining morally, spiritually, financially, and physically I ask why. 

When the news shows the face of one more soldier who is dead I ask why. 

When there is no justice for victims I ask why. 

Why is a hard question. Ask any parent who has had a two or three year old child ask "why" over and over. Children are naturally curious. How we answer can teach them life lessons or give them reassurance. If we feed them too much information, it could overwhelm them. 

Are we much different with God when we ask Him why? 

In the moments we ask why. we can rail against God, (why over and over) or we can grasp the moment and learn something from Him. 

Normal people ask why. Extraordinary people wait for God to answer.

“Look among the nations and watch! Be astonished and stare, because something is happening in your days that you wouldn’t believe even if told.”  Habakkuk 1:5 

God Has a Plan. 

Our Father has a plan. It is so amazing and full and perfect that if He told us all of it, we would be blown away! 

God’s ways are not our way. They are so much higher, and more involved in details than we can know. God shows us in bits and pieces. 

Sometimes we get a glimpse of things to come, or a sense of peace, or a reassurance that sets us back on track. Sometimes we don’t get any of these things. That is when faith comes in. 

Habakkuk 2:4 says “Behold the proud, His soul is not upright in him; But the just shall live by his faith”. 

Translation? (According to me) “Look, when you set yourself against God because you don’t like the answers you cannot find rest in your soul. Line up on God’s side and live with the knowledge that God has it under control. Live by faith!” 

We may not ever know all the reasons things seem so out of balance in this world. But there is one thing we can be assured of: God is in control and all we need to do is trust. 

Not blindly, but actively. Knowing that God is faithful and just and holy, we can rest. 

So next time you want to know why, stop and listen. God will answer. Then, it is your job to trust. Are you up for it? 

Can you share an example of a time when you asked God why?

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A Few Things: A Father's Day Tribute

Yes, My Dad! Photo Credit: Seth Hackett
Father's Day is tomorrow. Though my dad and I are currently estranged, things have recently began to heal a bit, and even look like there may be room for change in the relationship. For that I am grateful. We just aren't there...yet. 

Recently I have begun writing more about him. It is cathartic. In honor of my dad, and all of you dads out there, I want to say Happy Father's Day and share a (hokey) poem. 

(I am a writer, not a poet...the two are not always the same thing!) 

A Few Things


These are a few things I know about my dad

Ruddy hands 
Blue eyes 
Stern face 
Soft heart 

These are a few things I know about my dad 

Smart mind 
Quick tongue 
Hearty laugh 
Loud bark 

These are a few things I know about my dad 

Aren't we all? 

These are a few things I know about my dad 

Recently hugged and even kissed 

These are a few things I know about my dad 


These are a few things I feel about my dad

Happy Father's Day 

What are a few things you love about your dad? 

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Give God a Reason

The Wrap Up

We have been learning about confidence. Trusting in God to take care of us, the situations we walk through and the future are just some of the topics we have covered. 

One thing we haven’t covered is this: can God have confidence in us? 

Can God trust you? 

That is a big question, and frankly it intimidates me. God is a holy God and I have never wanted to disappoint Him, though I have fallen short over and over. 

So what does the Bible say about this? 

Let’s look at the story of Abraham, Isaac and a Contract (read the story here

Abraham had been serving the Lord for years. In his old age he was given a son by his wife Sarah, whom they called Isaac. This child was a promised child, a gift in their old age and the beginning of the nation of Israel. Just not yet. 

First God wanted to test Abraham. God was testing Abraham’s love, faith, trust, and his free will. 

God tested Abraham’s love. --- This was prelaw. There were no 10 Commandments yet. There were other idols and gods being worshipped. Abraham was called out of the Chaldeans, known for their worship and veneration of the stars and planets. God needed to know that there was nothing between Abraham and Him: not even a son. Every step he took toward that mountain was walked because Abraham loved the Lord. 

God tested Abraham’s faith. --- After God told Abraham to go sacrifice his son He said “on a mountain I will show you”. This three day trip had to be emotionally excruciating for a father. He prepared everything. He struck out. Crossing desert and closing in on a mountain range. Where would God step in? 

He had to be thinking: ‘Surely God would not kill my boy- the one He promised to me years ago.’ 

When Isaac asked where the sacrifice was, Abraham could only answer, “God will provide”. 

He kept the faith. 

God tested Abraham’s trust in Him. --- He raised the knife. Knowing that if he followed through with it, God would provide a miracle for his son and for him. He determined in his heart to follow through in obedience and for that reason, God stayed Abraham’s hand. Abraham trusted God, and it was counted as righteousness

God tested Abraham’s free will. --- At any time Abraham could have said no. God had already promised Abraham a son. God had delivered on that promise. But love, faith, trust, have no power unless they are given of our free will. Abraham chose God over his son, over his doubt, over his pain, over his circumstances. Abraham chose God. 

So what did God do in return? He chose Abraham. 

God provided where there was no provision. He changed Abraham’s mourning into celebration. God honored Abraham’s faithfulness with an even bigger promise. 

The Contract 

And God said to Abraham: 

“I give my word as the Lord that because you did this and didn’t hold back your son, your only son, I will bless you richly and I will give you countless descendants, as many as the stars in the sky and as the grains of sand on the seashore. They will conquer their enemies’ cities. All the nations of the earth will be blessed because of your descendants, because you obeyed me.” 

Just seconds before this, Abraham thought his son would soon be dead. Now, because he chose God, God was choosing him to be the father of a nation. Through this nation, (the 12 tribes of Israel) came Jesus, the Savior of the World, by whom all nations of the earth are blessed. 

Because Abraham chose God, God chose Abraham, and through him began a blood line that would birth the King of Kings. 

So what trial are you going through? What thing has God asked you to do that seem so hard? Think of Abraham and choose well. 

Give God a reason to trust you. 

Have you ever had a test of your faith?

This tandem series on CONFIDENCE is a joint effort between Dana Pittman and Dayna Bickham. Both Dana and Dayna blog about life, grace, and God’s love and plan for you. To follow this series, visit here to learn more.

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