Monday, April 30, 2012

you are a cargiver

"Don't do it!  Don't wake up!  Please stay closed..."   Does this sound familiar?  If you've ever been awarded the job of caregiver, you have possibly whispered these words to the back of your eye lids before waking up each morning.  It's not really because you don't want to wake up.  It is because you know that once your feet hit the floor, you are on GO!  And with very little time to breathe.

You are a caregiver.  Most days you love your job.  Besides, what better way to fill the hours in your day than to care for someone you love.  There are many different types of circumstances that shift you into the role.


  •  there was a car accident and a friend or family member didn't walk away unharmed.
  •  your spouse or significant other is poisoned with a chronic illness.
  •  you are helping to raise your grandchildren.
  •  the child God blessed you with has special needs.
  •  your loved one made it home from the war...just not in one piece.

Whatever the reason, the outcome is the same.  You are a caregiver.  And you are tired.  Depending on how long you've held the title, you might be frustrated.  Allow me to toss a little encouragement your way.

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”  Matthew 11:28

"My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”  Exodus 33:14

“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”  Psalm 73:26

“Hear my cry, O God; listen to my prayer. From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe. I long to dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings.”  Psalm 61:1

“Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”  Isaiah 40:28-31

I know it's not easy.  I've been where you are.  And the fact that you love the person you are caring for on a daily basis doesn't change the reality that you cannot feel your legs when you FINALLY crawl into bed each night. 

I hate it when people say,  "God will never give you more than you can handle."  Not only is that not true.  It's simply not biblical.  What IS true, however, is that God will not put more on you than HE can handle.  And He can handle anything! 

Remember, if you are a child of God, He is walking with you throughout your day.  And He cares for your loved one more than you do...

So, sit down, close your eyes and take a deep breath.  Now, ask your Father to help you.   I promise you He will!

Friday, April 27, 2012

it's okay to NOT be okay

I was surfing through my family blog tonight in search of a few writing samples to submit, along with an application, to a blogging company.  I ran across several posts that I had forgotten about.

I wanted to share one of those with you.  Allow me to preface the entry...

Most of you know that my husband and I adopted our son from Guatemala.  I also have mentioned before that the months we spent waiting for his arrival were very painful.  Having said that, God used that time to teach me so much about Himself.  So, today I confess to you that I wouldn't trade that dreadful wait for anything in the world.

I have no way of knowing what you are going through at this time in your life.  Maybe you are on your mountain top and everything is going great.  However, if  you are camped out in a valley right now,  this post is designed JUST FOR YOU! 

I may not understand EXACTLY what you're going through, but I remember all too well the emotions that accompanied my stay in the valley.  The walls are very tall and intimidating.  My only advice to you would be to LOOK UP! 

God has not moved.

Click here  to read my account of when God reminded me that, as a Christian,  IT IS OKAY TO NOT BE OKAY!

Thursday, April 26, 2012


I am home sick today.  In addition to catching up on some much needed rest, I am also catching up on my Dr. Phil episodes that I have taped.

I just finished one where Dr. Phil gave a returning guest a second chance to get sober at one of his facilities for people struggling with drug addictions.  At the closing of the show, the guest looked at him with a tear stained face and thanked him for not giving up on her.   Dr. Phil's response is the reason for this devotion.  He stared back at her and said, "Do not be thankful, be worthy of this second chance."  The crowd broke out into a thunderous applause!

What Dr. Phil did for this young girl is very admirable in my book.  His gesture also mirrors what God does with us, as His children.  There is only one HUGE difference.  We are not, nor will we EVER be worthy of the mercy and grace that we receive.

 On a daily basis.

 Our "worthy" entered the world as "... a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."  Luke 2:12.  Because of this, we do not have to "be worthy of our second chance."  Jesus has taken care of that for us!  We only have to accept it.

Now, that is cause for a thunderous applause.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

a lesson from oprah

I used to watch the Oprah show religiously.  Although my views in NO way line up with her philosophy on life, I still enjoyed watching her interviews.  I am using the past tense of my verbs because in the past few years, I have come to my senses and have begun watching Dr. Phil instead.

Even if you have not tuned in to WYFF at 4:00, surely you have heard of Oprah's Favorite Things!  It is a show she does once in a while where she introduces all of her "favorite things."  If you happen to be a guest in the audience on this particular day, you travel home with TONS of goodies.  Oprah gives one of EVERYTHING on her list to every guest in the studio. You can imagine the reactions of her audience! 

It looks a little something like this...  click here

Can you believe that?!  People are crying, passing out, one lady even "peed" on herself!  I have to be honest, I am not sure what it is Oprah gave away on this particular day.  I'll even admit that my interest is peeked.  What I can tell you is that whatever she wrapped up and delivered  does not compare to the Gift of salvation we've been given through Jesus!

"For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."  Romans 6:23

If Oprah's fans can go BONKERS over the prizes she gives away, surely we as Christians, can show a little excitement over our Savior!  At some point in our lives, we've all been a guest in God's studio.

What is your reaction to His gift?

Monday, April 23, 2012

identity theft

We definitely live in a paranoid society.  And with good reason!  Every time you turn around, you hear of some one's identity being stolen.

It can ruin our entire existence.  My husband and I try and take extra precautions when it comes to our finances.  We do not put our banking information on the Internet for ANY reason.  We pay with cash rather than cards 99% of the time.  It's so scary.  Just the other day, I heard of fast food employees imprinting credit card numbers and using them after the customer leaves. 

Terrible, huh?! 

Satan does the same kind of thing.  He creeps around just waiting for that person he can sweep into his nasty grip.  He doesn't need an imprint of our credit card to make our lives miserable.  Here is a list of tools that Satan uses to abduct our priorities:

  • Television
  • Computers
  • Shopping malls
  • Pornography
  • Food
  • Movies
  • M.O.N.E.Y

And the list goes on and on and....

As Christians, if we are not careful,  we can lose sight of our purpose here on Earth.  How incredibly easy it is to become so entangled with the world that we forget Who we were created to identify with.  Every now and then I have to do a priority check in my own life.  I would like to encourage you to do the same.

"For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love  he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will..."  Ephesians 1:4-5

It may be difficult to recover financial identity once it's been compromised, but it can be done.  Unfortunately, if Satan swipes our identity card, the consequences can be eternal.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

not the normal devotion post

God has given me three new devotional ideas to write.  I am very excited about them.  Unfortunately, I have had a difficult time putting them down in writing.  I don't know how it is for other writers, but in order for me to be productive, I HAVE  to be alone in a quiet place.  So, as much as I would LOVE to deliver a devotion to you (as promised) today, I just cannot do it.  Things at work have been pretty hectic lately, and mom and I have been working hard to finish our children's book.  Add that to my every day responsibilities at home, and I just do not have the mental capability left over to write the devotions.  Hang with me, though, I promise I will get myself organized and back on track.  Just consider this a "dry spell."

 I will, however, share my thoughts with you tonight.  Sit back, relax...this one's a little longer than you're used to. (Sorry mom, I know you're at work!)

I am not sure what has come over me today.  JP and I went to church this morning.  It was an amazing service, as usual.  We then came home and ate lunch with my mom, sister, and Preston.  We were pretty lazy around the house this afternoon, and tonight we went back over to mom and dad's to eat sub sandwiches for dinner.  All in all it was a good day.  A normal day.

When it came time to get JP ready for bed, every OUNCE of patience that I normally possess, left my body!  EVERYTHING he did drove me absolutely crazy.  Granted, he doesn't listen like I would like for him to, but what five year old boy does?  He wasn't behaving terribly, or doing anything out of the ordinary.  My actions, however, were out of the ordinary.  I was a HOT MESS!  I try not to yell/raise my voice at JP.  That blew up in my face tonight!  I was so fed up with hearing my name and having to repeat myself to him. I completely lost control.

Once I calmed myself down, I went and crawled in the bed with him.  I told him that I was sorry for losing my patience and reminded him that it was wrong of me to yell.  Being the sweet child that he is, he said, "I forgive you, mommy."  And all was well. 

I held him until he fell asleep.  Out of nowhere, an overwhelming weight washed over me and I began to cry.  All of a sudden I was painfully aware of my responsibility to him as his mother.  My job is to prepare him for life.  His spiritual wellness is dependant on me as well.  What kind of a model am I for him?  Thirty minutes before this, I was telling him NOT to say my name again and not to talk to me.  I was yelling at him to brush his teeth and get into bed.  I was frustrated because he was so needy.  I didn't want to be needed.

 Now, I lay beside him thinking of what my little fit must have looked like to him.  And I feel rotten! 

Thankfully, my son has such a forgiving spirit.  I have no doubt that things will be back to normal in the morning.  He will have forgotten the happenings of tonight.  I, on the other hand, need to better control my emotions around JP.  I love him so much.  Once upon a time, I longed to hear him call me "mommy."  I need to remind myself of that.

Well, I guess that's all.  I appreciate you allowing me to vent.  This whole ordeal made me so thankful that Jesus doesn't ever get tired of hearing us call out His name. 

I should strive to be more like Him.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

In addition to a VERY stressful work week, I have had several evening obligations this week. I am pooped! Due to brain-failure, devotions will resume on Sunday. Thank you for your patience!!
* I would appreciate your mother and I mailed our query letter to an agent today. We are hoping that we will be given the opportunity to submit our manuscript for our children's book! *

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

conversations with God

We boarded our cocker spaniel last weekend for the very first time. I can sum up our experience with one word. MISTAKE! She must have thought we completely abandoned her because she has since developed colitis! Yes, you heard me correctly. And if you are familiar with this gastrointestinal monster, you can imagine what this has meant for us at home! ACCIDENTS EVERYWHERE! UGH!

One positive thing that did develop through this dreadful ordeal is that I have been a cleaning machine! My floors have never been so clean! I worked all day today mopping floors, washing clothes, cleaning the bathroom and dusting. Sounds awful, huh? Actually it was nice.

I used that time to talk to God.

"Never stop praying" 1 Thessalonians 5:17
As Christians, we sometimes grow up with the misguided notion that we have to sit down, fold our hands and close our eyes in order to talk to God. Fortunately, that is not true. Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with that way. It's just not mandatory!
If it were, I might have missed out on a really wonderful conversation today, while cleaning my house!

Sunday, April 15, 2012


My five year old son has had a HORRIBLE mouth lately! I have heard him tell me "NO!" more times this weekend than I have in the past year. And I do not mind telling you, it drives me insane! It's not like what I ask him to do is difficult. Usually, it has something to do with brushing his teeth, sharing toys with his cousin, or taking his toys from the living room and putting them back in his room where they belong. NOT HARD! Lately, however, everything turns into an issue.

Tonight, when I tucked him into bed I told him that I loved him more than anything in the world, but that I was really disappointed with the way he talked to me and his daddy. Of course his response quickly reminded me of why I'm so in love with him. He rolled over, smiled and said, "Mommy, I promise I'll try harder tomorrow." How sweet. Needless to say, all was forgiven and I held on to him a little bit longer until he peacefully drifted off to sleep.

" Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen."
Ephesians 4:29
When I tuck myself in to bed tonight, I should probably whisper the same thing to God. Father, I promise I'll try harder tomorrow!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

your gifts

I went to my nephew's third birthday party the other week. It was a lot of fun. You can imagine the WILD energy in a room full of small children! After everyone enjoyed cake and ice cream, Coleman came to the middle of the room to open his presents. All eyes were anxiously awaiting the reveal of each gift! After he had torn through the last one, he was OFF to resume playing with his friends. It was over so quickly. So typical of a three year old boy!
And there, left in a big pile in the middle of the room, were all of his gifts.
On our Heavenly re-birth day, God gives all of us one or more spiritual gifts. "There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them." 1 Corinthians 12:4
Our gifts are not meant to be left in a pile in the middle of a room. God intended us to utilize our talents and abilities to further His Kingdom! In doing so, we are promised a more fulfilling "party!"

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

a little inspiration for today

easter sunday

Today is Easter Sunday and I am in Gatlinburg, Tennessee with my husband and son. While we missed taking part in our church services this morning, we've really enjoyed one another during our much needed mini-vacation!
There is a church on almost every corner here. Just about every church sign reads, "Please join us on Easter Sunday for our early morning sunrise service." When I read this particular invitation, several images flood my mind.
  • A beautiful sunrise
  • Flowers in bloom on a spring morning
  • Sweet little children dressed up in their brand new Easter outfits
  • Easter egg hunts

What sweet Easter images...just not the most important ones!

"There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men. The angel said to the women, 'Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.'" Matthew 28:2-7

What a bitter sweet picture. As a Christian, it is painful to think about what took place on that hill. However, what took place three days later takes my breath away. And saved my life! The next time you attend an Easter sunrise service, whisper a prayer of thanksgiving for your beautiful gift of salvation!

And praise God because His SON did rise!

Sunday, April 1, 2012


Hello all!!

My family is on Spring Break this week! I will not be posting devotions again until next Tuesday when we return to our weekly routine. We will be leaving for Tennessee towards the end of the week.

In the meantime, you can follow us on our family blog! HERE.