It’s True, God Loves You!

We all long to know
we are worthy of belonging.
To have connection.
To be accepted for who we are.
To be loved.


When my boys were in high school,
one played guitar on the worship team.
The other took up acting.

Every time one of them was on a platform,
you can bet I was front and center.
I had my eyes locked on him until
he did something clever or
performed some especially challenging feat,
at which point,
I would turn to the person on my left,
elbow them to get their attention,
point at the stage and exclaim,
See that one in the blue shirt?
That one’s mine.
Isn’t he wonderful?
Then, I’d turn to the person behind me
and say,
Did you see that?
Did you notice how brilliant that boy is?
He’s mine.
He belongs to me.”

Girlfriend,
it didn’t matter what they were doing.
On the stage or loafing on the sofa,
showing off or crashing the car,
my eyes are always on my boys,
loving them.

They weren’t perfect.
They aren’t perfect.
Sometimes, they weren’t even very good.

Their performance never affected
the way I love my children.

I love them because they belong to me.
They are part of me.

Read More

Do You Believe God Has Good Gifts Waiting For You?

Do you believe God has good gifts waiting for you?

 

From the time my children were born,
I planned to give them lots of great stuff. 
I intended to shower them with opportunities that would delight them. 
I was determined to give them things that would make
their life easier or better or richer or set them up for success.

It was always my intention that they would
swim in an ocean,
ride a bike,
drive a car,
have a girlfriend.
I always had plans to
send them college,
mow the lawn with the big tractor,
use the chainsaw and
manage money.

However, I couldn’t dump every good thing
I had in my storehouse on them at once!
I didn’t want them to become
overwhelmed
or spoiled
or entitled.

I didn’t want to set my boys up to fail or get hurt.
Did you notice that most of the good gifts I had for them
required some training to appreciate and
some maturity to manage?

Read More

How To Boss Your Fear

Have you ever wished
you could
Boss Your Fear?

I took my teenage boys to an amusement park
and reluctantly agreed to accompany them
on a roller coaster ride.
It was one of those big, old, wooden monstrosities.
The kind of rollercoaster that
shakes and tosses you around inside the cart
until your sunglasses fly off your face and
most of the contents of your purse
fall into the abyss below the tracks.
As the roller coaster thrashed us about,
fear crawled up the back of my throat.
I thought,
Why did I ever agree to come on this ride?
I’ll probably die and my children will be orphans!

This is terrifying!” I shrieked to my son.
“I hate this. How do I make it stop!”

“You can’t stop it, Mama.
You just gotta do it scared!”
my son yelled back.

There was nothing to do but hang on and ride it out.

Rationally, I knew that millions of people
had survived the ride,
but at that moment it didn’t feel like
I was going to.

Maybe that’s how you feel now.
Like you’re being rattled and shaken and
tossed about and that
you’re not going to make it.

Fear creeps up on you and
your mind is filled with
Why’s and What if’s?

That’s the ugly, scary part of fear.
The powerful unknown.

Read More

Not Too Late For A Big Dream

It’s Not Too Late For YOUR Big Dream!

I spend a lot of my days doing
Ordinary stuff.
Boring stuff.
Familiar stuff.

Cleaning bathrooms.
Washing clothes.
Fixing meals.

You, too, right?

There’s a little verse in Zechariah 4:10 that says,
“Do not despise these small beginnings,
for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin..”

As an author and speaker
I have BIG DREAMS
to see thousands surrender to Jesus.
I have BIG DREAMS
of women breaking free of stinkin’ thinkin’.
I have BIG DREAMS of
infusing hope to the bowed down.

Sometimes my big dreams get lost
in the day to day drudgery of life.

Read More

The Season Is Not Summer, It’s Menopause!

 “Honey, it’s summer! 
Isn’t it time to change out the flannel sheets
for something lighter?” 
Mr. 4-Ever asked innocently.

In theory I agree,
but in reality,
the season isn’t summer,
it’s menopause. 

In the season of life called menopause,
my body randomly flashes nuclear.

I thought women were kidding about melting,
but no, it’s true.   

Read More

Do You Have A Story To Tell? Speak Up!

I am often asked,
“How did you get started speaking?”

My mom would probably say
I stood up in my crib and asked,
“Where’s my spotlight!”

I’ve been speaking for as long as I can remember.
Bible study teacher,
small group leader,
breakout session speaker
and eventually gained enough momentum
to enter full-time ministry as a
conference and retreat keynote speaker.

I love to share what I’ve learned and experienced
so others can avoid my mistakes
or apply the discoveries I’ve made.

Do you have a story to share?
Would you like to tell others
what God has done in your life?
Is there a book in you that needs to get out?

If the answer is yes,
but you don’t know where to start,
let me give you 3 ideas to begin.

Read More

Focus On What You’ve Got, Rather Than What You’ve Not!

Before I learned to focus on what I’ve got,
rather than what I’ve not,
I used to dread the Monday
following Mother’s Day.

As if the cascade of perfect FB posts on
Mother’s Day weren’t enough to create
a case of the covets,
every conversation on Mother’s Day Monday
was about
being showered
with attention and gifts.

 Mr. 4-Ever is a great husband.

If I could, I would clone him and
give him away as Christmas presents
to women who want
a Godly man with impeccable character.

But the clone would have to come with a disclaimer.
This is a good man.
He is kind, gentle, loving, fun,
hard-working, generous, and patient.
He is creative and calm in all situations.
He is a great kisser.
but …
a Harlequin Romance novel hero … 
He. Is. Not.

Rarely do flowers or chocolates show up
on my desk.
Good behavior gifts and
just because “I love you” texts
do not happen.

Read More

Celebrating You On Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is an odd holiday,
isn’t it?
So many opportunities
for things to go wrong.

Vacuum cleaners and frying pan gifts aside,
women who have children eagerly wait by
mailboxes and
telephones and
on the edge of their seat
to see if anyone will acknowledge the day.

Women who are desperate for children
are expected to exuberantly celebrate those who do.

Women in the throws of child-rearing years –
the ones who could really benefit from a day off,
are the ones who work overtime
on Mother’s Day
to make sure their mother or
mother-in-law is recognized and honored.

Husbands who remember Mother’s Day
worry and fret about
what to do and how to do it.

Is a card enough?
How about chocolates?
Should there be flowers?

What about women whose mamas have died?
Mother’s Day dredges up lots of memories
with the realization there won’t be any new ones.

Women who aborted or adopted
often spend Mother’s Day lamenting
what could have been.

Mother’s Day can be a
tough day for many women.

On this Mother’s Day,
instead of letting
card companies,
old memories,
television commercials,
comparisons,
or regrets
define your day,
celebrate
who you are in Christ.

May I remind you that
before you were a mom,
before you wanted to be a mom
even before you had a mom,
God made you to be his child.

Read More

Don’t Be An Easy Target

Mr. 4-Ever is an excellent marksman.

In an effort to improve his skills,
we watch A LOT o
videos on how to kill stuff.

Sometimes it’s a guy in camo
sitting in a tree waiting for his trophy buck.

Sometimes it’s a guy lurking in the weeds
with a goofy sounding whistle
trying to trick a turkey into coming closer.

Occasionally, we take a break from camo guys
and watch a nature video of a lion
hunting for dinner.

The Bible says in
1 Peter 5:8
Your enemy the devil prowls around
like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

Have you noticed that lions don’t go after the 
fattest,
healthiest,
most popular
animal in the middle of the pack?

Nope,
the lion goes for the easy prey.

The weak.
The broken.
The lonely.

The one on the fringe.

If our enemy the devil
prowls after us like a lion,
we are safest in the midst of a herd.

Don’t be an easy target.

Read More