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Beauty for Ashes

Hear, Lord, and be merciful to me; Lord, be my help. You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise You forever.  Psalm 30:11-12 He comforts all who mourn. Provides for the grief stricken. A crown of beauty and a garment of praise. Beauty for ashes. Despair no more. The Lord’s splendor displayed. Righteousness revealed. Ancient ruins…

Wilderness Ways

  Note from Liz:  This is my first post in 8 months - the hardest 8 months of my life. Here's what I know for sure - God is good and He never lets go. When I am faithless, He is faithful - it says so in His Word - 2 Timothy 2:13. Thank you to my friends, family and readers who encouraged and bugged me to get back to writing. To God be the glory. Forget the former things;…

Compromise Kills

A man went bear hunting. Soon, a large, brown bear came lumbering across his path searching for berries. The hunter had the bear in his sights and began to squeeze the trigger. What happened next was unexpected. The bear turned and asked, “Excuse me. Isn’t it better to talk than shoot? Why don’t we try to negotiate this matter?” The surprised hunter lowered his gun and said, “Okay….I guess I’m open to that.” “What do you want exactly?” the bear…

Double Trouble

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9 It wasn’t intentional. It was an accommodation. A kindness. A compromise. I didn’t want to be that Christian. The one who makes sure everyone knows they don’t drink or let their kids watch certain movies. The one people roll eyes over as they walk away. I wanted my non-Christian friends to feel comfortable and develop…

Consuming Fire

His voice shook the earth and Moses trembled in terror and fear. The untouchable mountain burned with darkness, gloom and storm. What was commanded could not be borne. Then God. His voice shook earth, water, sky. Now He promises. Promises to shake not just earth but also the Heavens. A kingdom that cannot be shaken. Mount Zion, city of the living God. The heavenly Jerusalem. Thousands upon thousands of angels assemble in joy. Jesus, mediator of the new covenant. Sprinkled…

Inside Out

Bright morning sun has me squinting hard as I bend down to peer through the open window of a car now coasted to a stop beside my dog, Lucy. “What's going on?” my neighbor asks. I pause considering an obligatory response then plunge forward in a current of honesty. “Walking in anger and unforgiveness.” He doesn’t miss a beat, “That’s all of us.” Trials are a test – not pass or fail but to improve strength and reveal weakness. I’ve…

Same Sex Attraction: A Battle with Shame

Today, I give you a gift in the form of a post written by guest blogger, Sam Renee Bartee. God connected Sam and I through Instagram where I discovered her blog and devotion to Christ. Reading her writing humbles and inspires me – I pray I live my faith boldly and proclaim Him fearlessly the way Sam does. This is a post you want to read and share. I hated myself - every part and portion down to the last…

The Shepherd’s Voice

“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me” –Jesus, John 10:27 It seemed like a good idea - friends cheered me on. I was ten and agreed to walk my neighbor’s giant dog. The neighborhood fraternity wanted to go roller skating – right that second. “Just put your skates on….he can pull you.” A plan destined for disaster. Within minutes I was cruising down the blacktop – until the dog saw a squirrel. He went…

Jesus Wasn’t Plan B

And the Lord God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” So the Lord God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. Genesis 3:22-23 It was the shot heard around the world. A moment that changed everything – one with…

Surf’s Up

“Surfing alone among sports, generates laughter at its very suggestion, and this is because it turns not a skill into an art, but an inexplicable and useless urge into a vital way of life.” -- Matt Warshaw, Former Professional Surfer Judgment. An opinion pronounced. Pronounced with disapproval. A teeter-totter where I'm up and you're down. Many cite judgment as the reason they avoid church and Christians in general. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came…