“But Jesus replied, “My Father is always working, and so am I.””
John 5:17 NLT
“But Jesus replied, “My Father is always working, and so am I.””
John 5:17 NLT
My family and I have a slightly embarrassing confession: We love the show Finding Bigfoot.
Though they’ve stopped making new episodes, we’ve got our DVR set to record every re-run aired. We love Bobo with his crazy hair and reenactments. We chuckle at the team’s eery Bigfoot calls. We like the mystery of it all. How, even though they’ve never seen a Bigfoot, they don’t stop looking for one.
Today, as we laid around the living room recovering from our week at youth camp, we watched an old episode. The team was in the Appalachian Mountains where they pulled out all the stops. As usual, they were prepared. They had their hiking gear, night-vision and heat-sensing goggles. They had sonar listening devices and sound equipment. They even had a baboon on loan from a local zoo, hoping her sounds would stir a reaction from the ultimate hide-and-seek champ. They brought everything they could think of to help them see and/or hear something on their quest.
As I watched, I also noticed what they did not bring. They did not bring music, videos or social media. They did not bring books or podcasts. They didn’t invite a big group of friends to sit down and chitchat or debate. They didn’t spend their time in the woods texting or checking emails. They knew why they were there and they were focused. They were finding Bigfoot.
Jesus says we should do the same.
“Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.”
Matthew 7:7-8 NLT
When we truly want to see God, Jesus says we can and we will. When we keep seeking Him, asking for more of Him, knocking on the door of His presence, He says we will find Him.
Though the team has yet to prove Bigfoot’s identity, they have not stopped believing he is out there. In fact, they have traveled the world in hopes of finding him! They have interviewed countless people who say they’ve seen him, even followed them back to the site of their encounter. They keep seeking and you know what? They keep finding evidence of him. They keep hearing noises and seeing movements. They keep finding reasons to continue their search.
I don’t know about you, but I’m convinced. I’ve seen and heard enough to believe God is who He says He is. In fact, God’s Word says we all have seen evidence of Him. Enough to leave us without an excuse for disbelief.
Unlike Bigfoot, God is not elusive. And—He ABSOLUTELY exists! Even when we don’t hear Him or see Him moving, the truth is He is closer than we realize. The question about God is not Does He exist? but Will we look for Him? Will we seek His presence? Will we wait for Him to move? Will we be prepared? Will we remove distractions for the chance to hear His voice or see His power? Will we travel the world in pursuit of Him? Talk with and listen to those who’ve encountered Him? Or, will we continue our journey even when the people around us say He’s a fraud?
Finding Bigfoot may never make another episode, but that doesn’t mean Bigfoot hunters will stop their quest. These people won’t stop believing in his existence or searching for his whereabouts. Real or not, those who say they’ve seen him will never be convinced he isn’t out there.
The same goes for all who truly believe in Jesus. Even though we’ve never physically seen Him we still believe, and the Bible says our souls are saved because we do! We will never stop seeking Him, not because we can’t find Him, but because we have—and we want to see more! We find His footprints in His Word, His fingerprints in creation. Hear His voice in the testimony of His children. Witness His power in changed lives.
We’re not just seeking Him, we’re following Him, too. Wherever He steps, we step. We aim to reenact His ways, His love. We hope to provide even more evidence of His existence to a world full of skeptics.
So there it is. The secret is out. We watch Finding Bigfoot—and we like it. Who knows whether he’s really out there or not? Honestly, what does it matter? The hope of finding him is what makes the quest worth watching.
Maybe they should make a show called Finding Jesus. THAT would be worth watching!
“For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.”
Romans 1:20 NLT
“You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls.”
1 Peter 1:8-9 NLT
“The Lord is close to all who call on him, yes, to all who call on him in truth.”
Psalms 145:18 NLT
“If you look for Me wholeheartedly, you will find Me.”
Jeremiah 29:13 NLT
It’s not every day you have the opportunity to watch something be fully restored before your eyes. A house. A car. An artifact. These things take weeks or even years to restore. Time and money to bring them back to life.
But not the human heart.
The moment we believe Jesus—not just believe IN Him but actually BELIEVE HIM—that is the moment our hearts are fully restored. Our load is lifted. Our stains are removed. We are a brand. new. person. Not outwardly, of course, but inside. In our hearts, where we truly exist. His love and forgiveness tears out the old and brings in the new. God’s original, sinless design for us is completely restored. We are no longer broken by our own wrong choices or by the wrong done to us. In an instant we are reborn as the beautiful, spotless creation He made us to be. We are breathtakingly new again.
What an undeserved privilege to witness not one but EIGHT restorations this week! To see young people decide that as for them and their house, they WILL serve the Lord. To choose Jesus, not because they’re ‘supposed’ to, but because they can’t NOT choose Him. To see their eyes opened to His overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love for them, and their shameless desire to love Him back.
God had a plan this week and NOTHING thwarted it! Not car trouble. Not finances. Not the weather or misunderstandings or unexpected needs. Nothing in all creation separated us from the love of God that is found in Jesus our Lord! His Spirit went before us, surrounded us and followed us. We were totally engulfed by Him.
Y’all, I don’t share this simply to tell of my awesome experience—this is not a filtered photo-op. I share this because I want every. single. person I know to be restored. I want YOU to experience Jesus’ indescribable love for YOURSELF. I want YOU to know His power to make YOU new again. I want YOUR SPIRIT to be reborn.
If you have never truly believed Jesus for yourself but want to, nothing would make my heart happier than to share the truth of His Word with you. Call me. Message me. Let’s have coffee! Or, talk to someone you know knows Jesus. He is hopelessly in love with YOU and He longs to restore you to the beautiful creation He designed you to be. He’s got the tools; all He needs is your heart.❤️
That mountain in New Mexico was and is the rebirth-place of countless souls. Thank You, Father, for ALL You’ve done, are doing, and will continue to do. Thank You for allowing me to watch You work— the hope of MY heart has been rejuvenated by Your love and power! There is NO ONE like You!!!🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻
🎶The mountains sing Your glory-hallelujah; the canyons echo sweet amazing grace. My spirit sails; the mighty gales are bellowing Your Name. And I’ve got nothing to say. I’ve got nothing to say.🎶
“Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.” “What do you mean?” exclaimed Nicodemus. “How can an old man go back into his mother’s womb and be born again?” Jesus replied, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life.”
John 3:3-6 NLT
When I truly trust someone to do something, I typically put that “something” out of my mind. I don’t think about it or wonder or worry that they will do it. I don’t even worry HOW they will do it, I just trust that they will. I fully expect it will be done, it will be done well and it will be on time.
This is Trust.
This is especially true if that “something” is something I’m not particularly good at and the person doing it for me is an expert. Like on Monday when our truck Bevo decided to break his hip (also known as his axel and bearing). This was obviously a major problem that I undoubtedly did not have the ability to solve, so I had no problem trusting the mechanic to fix it. I didn’t question his training or ask if he truly understood the exact sound the truck was making or the way it felt to drive it. I didn’t stand over his shoulder offering advice or suggestions. I sat in the waiting area, drank some coffee and read. I didn’t wring my hands wondering if he really knew how to fix my problem. I paid the man, got in the truck, started it and drove away.
I trusted his work.
Like Steve helping Abbie with her math homework, I totally trust him to help her get it done and correct because I know he’s good at math. He understands it better and it comes easier to him than it does to me. I don’t fret over it or even think about it. I don’t sit around wondering if she will fail her assignment or pass the class. I’m at peace. I trust her father knows what he is doing.
I can trust my Heavenly Father knows what He is doing, too.
In every subject. Every lesson. In every chapter of my life. He’s good at it ALL.
If I truly trust Him, I will be confident in His ability to get’er done, no matter what IT is. I’ll sit in the waiting room and drink coffee and read. Relax. And my confidence in Him will lead to peace—His peace—which also surpasses my understanding.🙌🏻🧠
Lord, thank You for broken trucks and math. They’ve taught me a lot today.❤️
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 4:6-7 NLT
This morning I was theologically challenged by a kindergartner.
As I got my favorite six-year-old out of the truck for school, I leaned in and whispered, “Do you know how I know God is good?”
“Because He gave me you.”
Cole grinned and proceeded to ask,
“How do you know what He’s like?”
“Well,” I said, “I know Him! And His word tells me.”
“Can He do anything?” Cole asked.
“Absolutely!” I said.
“Yeah, that’s true. He can. But what CAN’T God do? I bet you can’t tell me 10 things God CANNOT do!”
Ten things God cannot do…?
Well of course, my little one’s challenge immediately had me thinking— I rattled off four things before we hit the doors of the school! I hurried back to the truck to compile a list…
1. He cannot do evil. (Job 34:10)
2. He cannot lie. (Heb. 6:18)
3. He cannot be dark. (1 John 1:5)
4. He cannot stop loving you. (Lam. 3:22)
5. He cannot break His promises. (Ps. 146:6)
6. He cannot lose track of you. (Ps. 139:7-12)
7. He cannot tolerate sin. (Ps. 5:4)
8. He cannot forget His children. (Is. 49:15-16)
9. He cannot deny who He is. (2 Tim. 2:13)
10. He cannot be unfaithful. (2 Tim. 2:13)
As I finished it occurred to me, God cannot do A LOT of things!
While He is without doubt powerful and mighty, there are things that do in fact confine or restrain Him. His holiness. His love for us. His promises. God is so good, even the things He cannot do are good!!
I know there are more things to add—can you think of things God cannot do?
I cannot wait to show Cole our list!😆
Today is the day!!!📚
School starts for many of our kiddos today!! For some, this is a jumping-for-joy-can’t-believe-it’s-finally-here day!🎉 For others, it’s an I-can’t-believe-my-baby-is-so-grown-up day.😢 But for many, it’s a strange cocktail of both.
As I walked my Big Kindergarten Boy to class, I was so excited for him. But as I walked away alone, my heart sank.
And then I saw You.
You reminded of something I wrote 3 years ago, the day Abbie started 2nd grade, and I needed the reminder.
So here it is, a reminder for all us Teary-Eyed Moms today. A few of the details of this blog post have changed, but the truth of it has not.
Praying for all my fellow Mommas today! Love each of you so much!!!😘🙏🏻❤️
To all the moms with teary eyes and heavy hearts:
I’m sniffling right along with you today. It’s the first day of school and My Girl’s apron strings are a bit shorter.
I was holding it together pretty well this morning as I made my way down the 2nd grade hall, but then I saw You, the mom with the tissue and blotchy face. Your tears reminded me of the ones I was holding back…and the dam broke.
Worry surged my heart and fear flooded my mind. As tears began to stream I jumped in the car and prayed, “Lord Jesus, please be with My Girl…because I can’t.”
That’s when He softly reminded me of this truth…
“God loves our children infinitely more than we can…I am able to be with and help my children only to the limit of my presence. But there is no boundary to His presence.”…
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Y’all, I don’t wanna jinx anything but I am just so dadgum proud of our little rose garden. Not only is it still alive but it’s actually blooming!!!
(If you know me and my Black Thumbs, you know this is truly a feat. I sing “I Will Survive” to every plant I own.)
Mother’s Day weekend we created a brand new flower bed on the north side of our farmhouse. We planted 5 rose bushes in all and of course, they have names. There’s Reba, Naomi and Wynona (all red double knock-out roses); Miranda (my one official Miranda Lambert hybrid bush); and Patsy “Climb,” my only climbing rose.
Sad to say, but Patsy was a goner. She was pretty shocked by her move. Her leaves were brown and crunchy and she looked done for. In fact, I almost gave up hope and yanked her. Figured I’d go buy a new bush and start over. But Momma told me to hold on, don’t give up just yet. So, I kept on watering her and waiting and watering and waiting…
And would ya looky-here! She’s blooming!!! Not only are all 5 girls still alive, but Patsy Climb has made a full recovery!🙌🏻
Isn’t that like life? Sometimes things seem dead, done for, hopeless. And so we think to do the easiest thing—just yank ’em and start over. Move on. But if we would just be patient, keep on doing the right things and not give up…
“So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.”
Galatians 6:9 NLT
When the time is right, we might find there is still life in the thing after all. A “harvest” even. Blessings we would’ve missed if we had given up.
I don’t know what thing you’re wanting to give up on today, but I’m guessing it seems dead to you. Won’t you give it a bit more time? Just…wait? Don’t get tired of doing good. Press yourself to keep doing what is right.
You just might wake up and find something beautiful.🌹
The Lord asked me a question today… “Do you remember asking me that?”
He reminded me of something I pondered a few years ago, before Daddy moved to Heaven and so many other events transpired. I wrote my question out in the most secure, most private of places—the Notes app on my phone.😉
Yes, Lord, I remember asking.
So I looked for it and low and behold—do you know it’s still there?
I wrote these questions and pondered these thoughts on exactly May 12, 2014. And today, May 22, 2018, I finally have the courage to ask them out loud.
Do I have to be satisfied with what I’ve seen God do or can I expect and anticipate more? Not in a selfish or greedy way, expecting Him to bless me or increase my wealth, that’s not what I’m talking about.
Can I always be wanting more of God Himself? Of His goodness and His miracles? The amazing provisions He sends to cover the need and fill the gap in my life? Can I long to see more of His glory, like Moses did?
Moses started with a burning bush but then he got to see the parting of a sea. And then he saw a pillar of fire and a cloud leading the way. He progressively saw more and more of God’s amazing evidence in his life until he finally saw God Himself. His very Face.
Moses was never satisfied with what God had done because he knew God wasn’t finished. His story and the work God was using him for wasn’t finished. Moses lived in anticipation and expectation of what God would do next. He had to.
Moses knew he couldn’t get himself out of the mess he was in after killing that Egyptian. And he couldn’t get himself out of the desert. He was aware if his inadequacy, sometimes to a fault. But rather than allowing his insecurity to hold him back, his faith muscled through and propelled him to obedience.
“Obedience isn’t a lack of fear, it’s just doing it scared.”
Moses was never satisfied with what he had seen God do. He wanted more. Like a kid on the Fourth of July, Moses said, “I wanna see more! Do some more, God!”
And today I realize, that’s okay. It’s okay to want more from God. Not for my comfort or my personal gain, but for the simple joy of God’s glory.
“My expectation is in The Lord. My hope is in Him.”
In fact, it’s actually more than okay—it’s good! If I’m ever at a place where I am satisfied, I need to see that as a red flag warning. If I’m satisfied it means I have no need for God in my life, for Him to intervene. It means I’m in my comfort zone where I can handle things on my own.
Don’t confuse this with being satisfied with what I have: my home, possessions, etc. I’m talking about being satisfied with where I am with God. Do I want more of Him?
I asked these questions and wrote these thoughts long before I had any inkling of the ways I was about to see God work in my life. Before I had any clue this path of mine was about to take an unfamiliar course.
And do you know He has been faithful to answer? We can have as much of Jesus as we want!
Tonight I’m beginning Beth Moore’s study, “The Quest” at my church. As I’ve been preparing for it, God has shown me that it’s not only okay to ask questions, by that He in fact WANTS me to ask questions. If you’re in the Mineola area, I want to invite you to come ask questions with me. Join me on The Quest for more of God.
He has promised He will always answer.
“The Lord, the Maker of Heaven and earth–Jehovah is His name–says this: Ask Me and I will tell you some remarkable secrets…”. ~Jeremiah 33:3 TLB
Daddy used to scare me.
When I was a kid, we spent nearly every spring break, summer and Thanksgiving at my grandpa’s farm. When Daddy wasn’t working cattle or bailing hay, we’d often go fishing. Grandpa’s place covered quite a few acres, so we had our choice of ponds. But the one I always dreaded was the one with the narrow dam that sat just across the old creek.
The old creek had dried up some years ago, but the bed remained. Bumpy. Dry. Steep. Especially steep. Or at least that’s how it seemed to my child-sized eyes.
Whenever we’d decide to fish that particular pond, it meant we had to cross that old creek bed. Now this may not seem like a big deal, but did I mention we often crossed it on the tractor? Yep. Daddy drove while Momma, Jake and I hung on for dear life. Well, I hung on for dear life.
Sometimes we’d make it up the bank on the first try. I’d close my eyes and wrap my arms and legs around that old blue tractor as tightly as I could; I knew what was coming. Daddy would gun it at just the right moment and ta-da! We were at the top. But other times, it wasn’t so easy. If Daddy didn’t get it on the first couple tries, we’d get off and find a spot to climb the bank while he manhandled the tractor up the hill. I’d stand and watch and hold my breath until he was at the top.
Once we landed my breath would return, but only for a minute. Now it was time to face The Dam.
Now, when I say this pond had a dam, what I’m really saying is this pond had an extremely narrow path on one side that was baaaarely wide enough for a truck. Fall one way and you’re in the pond. Fall the other and you’re falling down a pretty steep drop. Either way, you did NOT want to fall off!
Have I mentioned the word Steep yet?
The problem was, the best and pretty much only fishing spot was on the other side of the dam, and the dam was the only way to it. So if this was the fishing hole of choice, crossing the dam wasn’t optional.
Once again, a’riding the tractor we’d go. With Daddy at the helm and the three of us holding tight, we’d cross that skinny strip at whatever speed Daddy felt fair. Sometimes fast. Sometimes slow. But every time, narrowly.
Sometimes I’d get so intimidated I’d jump off the tractor in tears. I’d rather walk than dangle from the heights of that old tractor. Daddy would just shake his head. Even though we’d done it so many times before, I just couldn’t bring myself to trust him this time.
Truth is, I knew my daddy would never let me get hurt. He’d never let any of us get hurt. He was our Protector. He had crossed that dam a thousand and one times. He knew what he was doing, whether I trusted him or not.
Daddy was also our Adventurer. Not only did he know he was capable, but he knew we’d enjoy the thrill of the ride. We’d feel we had accomplished something on the other side of it. We would trust him and thank him and praise him for getting us safely across.
Clearly he was right on all accounts.
Today would be Daddy’s 63rd birthday and if I could, I’d ask him to drive me out to that old pond. Old blue tractor and all. I’d be brave. I’d keep my eyes open. I’d stay on it the whole way and never let go.
I would fully enjoy the ride. I’d hold on tight and hug him even tighter when we made it across. I’d know we had accomplished something, and I’d trust him and thank him and praise him.
And Daddy would grin. He’d be so proud of his baby girl for being brave. He might even chuckle. He’d know just how much I love him because I proved I trusted him.
Oh, that I would trust my Heavenly Father like this. That I would find a way to enjoy the ride, even when it’s narrow and bumpy and steep. That I wouldn’t jump off and go my own way but trust that His way is safest and best; an adventure worth talking about on the other side.
I know that’s what Daddy knows now. His view from Heaven is so grand, I know he would tell me to hang on, keep my eyes open and enjoy the ride. Don’t jump off! Don’t worry about the heights! Just hold on and trust The One behind the wheel. He’s The Greatest Protector and Adventurer of All Time, totally worthy of my trust and thanks and praise.
Yes, Daddy was all of those things to our family and more. An amazing earthly example of Jesus. Oh how I miss him.
To celebrate Daddy today, we went fishing and ate giant cheeseburgers. No, we didn’t ride the tractor or cross a dam, but the memory of Daddy and that old pond has played in my mind all day.
Happy Birthday, Daddy. Thank you for taking me the long way around the pond.❤️
“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.””
John 16:33 NLT
Praise the Lord for YouTube, because some stories are easier to tell than to write!😆
Here’s a link to watch my testimony and catch up on the last couple years of my story.