Friday, April 30, 2010

His marvelous majesty - and a giveaway...

"By the word of the LORD the heavens were made, and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth....... Let all the earth fear the LORD; let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him. For He spoke, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast"  (Psalm 33: 6,8-9)


The picture above never fails to just totally blow my mind. This is a photo taken by the Hubble telescope of the black hole in the core of the Whirlpool Galaxy. It is 31 million light years away from us here on earth. It is just so amazing and so overwhelming and just so God. Right in the middle of that galaxy, is an image of the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Placed there by the Hand of God. Lovingly. Passionately. Purposefully.

"The Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty gives me life" (Job 33:4)
If you have never seen "How Great is our God" by Louie Giglio, I would highly suggest that you buy this DVD. I promise you will NOT be disappointed. It will absolutely change your perspective on just how HUGE our God is. It will really bring the bigness of our Creator into a greater understanding in your mind. It will astound you just like it astounded me. It continues to astound me every time I watch it (about 10 times now).

Every time, I am brought to tears by the sheer magnitude of God's power and majesty.  We live in a privileged place that was fashioned by the almighty Hands of God.  As I sat and just tried to fathom it all once again, God took the pen and I began to write.
Do you ever marvel at the majesty of God?
Do you just get lost in the beauty of His creation?

  the swaying trees
  the dancing flowers
  the waltzing clouds

Does he ever just blow your mind with
the intricate details of His handiwork?

  a spiders web
  a birds nest
  the stars in the sky

All around us, we glimpse the
splendor of the work of His Hands.

His gentle touch as he tenderly placed
  each grain of sand,
  each blade of grass,
  each drop of water.

I feel His presence in the wind.
His touch in the rain.
His love in the mighty radiance of the stars.

As His glory kisses my skin with
the powerful heat of the sun, I
stand amazed.

He spoke.
Creation formed.
Life was given.

Sustained by His breath
and delivered by His grace.

Oh, yes. I marvel at His majesty.
And I am lost in His creation.
He is God.


Leave me a comment on this post and on Monday, I will draw a name out and send the blessed winner a copy of this DVD.  If you are a follower, I will put your name in 2 times, but you do NOT have to be a follower to be entered. Just leave me a comment.

Captivated by Him,

Thursday, April 29, 2010

oh, the joy of being thankful!

I am thankful for Greg and his dedication to making Thursday a day of thanks to our precious Lord for all the He does in our lives. Greg, you are an awesome man and I am blessed to be part of this. Head on over to and join in on the fun and be blessed as well.


I am thankful that I was able to spend a few days last weekend with my mom. I was also able to visit with my sister, brother-in-law and nephew, Nic.  And with my brother, his wife and little nephew, Brandon. I was dealing with a little jealousy (godly jealousy - ha!) that they all live within about 1 mile of each other, when I live 3 hours away, but it sure made it nice to be able to visit them one right after the other.

I am thankful that my 2 sons-in-law are working again after being home for a few months. Pipe-line jobs are great when the work is steady, but sometimes it makes for a few lean months. They will be working together in Arkansas for a few months so I'll be getting some major 'Nana time' as I pitch in to help my girls out while their husbands are out of pocket. They live about 4 miles from each other and about 25 miles from me, but we keep the roads between us well traveled.

I am thankful that I serve a God who can and who does. When I can't, He can and when I don't, He does.

I am thankful for His amazing grace. I love how He dispenses it to me on an 'as-needed' basis. He is so faithful to show me His mercy and love.

I am thankful for a godly husband. Being married to a pastor isn't always easy, but God certainly fills in the gaps that I leave wide open. Thank you, Lord for calling him into the ministry and for allowing me to be part of it. I pray that I walk worthy of this calling and I thank you for equipping us in all things.

I am thankful that our prayers matter to our Lord. I am so thankful that when we cry out He hears. He knows our deepest sorrows and feels our deepest wounds. And He is faithful to carry us on eagles wings and cover us with His mighty Hand. He is always there. He will never let go.
"Let my mouth be filled with
Your praise.
And with Your glory all day"
Psalm 71:8


Monday, April 26, 2010

we need some sacrifice!

"Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God,
that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name."
(Hebrews 13:15)

A few weeks ago, my oldest 2 grandchildren were at my house and they decided to play church. They got one of my small baskets and asked me for some change to put in it and then they commenced to sing, preach and then of course, take up an offering.

As they held the basket out to their "congregation" they sang "We bring the sacrifice of praise into the House of the Lord". They continued playing and I had gone into the kitchen to begin cooking when Mikaela (7) came in and shook the little basket and cheerfully said, "We need more sacrifice, Nana!"

I got her some more money, but the words she spoke continued to play over and over in my mind. Profound Truth sprang forth.

"We need MORE sacrifice"

We all know that a sacrifice is when we give up something that is valued. It is the letting go of something important. Sadly, most of us feel like we have a real understanding of the true meaning of sacrifice, but the truth of the matter is, we really don't have a clue. In the deepest recesses of our imaginations, the vast majority of us are totally in the dark when it comes to the meaning of making a real, authentic sacrifice.

We think we sacrifice when we go to church in the pouring rain. Or when we have to keep the nursery during worship service. Or when we teach VBS. Or if we don't eat dessert.

Unfortunately, the things that we typically see as a sacrifice are really just minor inconveniences at best. Usually small things that when we do without, we really don't miss them anyway. Things that we don't appreciate and sometimes take for granted.

A true sacrifice should be just what it says.Something that we want to hold on to. Something that hurts to give up. Something that costs us in one form or another.

A sacrifice of our time. A sacrifice of our comfort zone. A sacrifice of our money. (ouch)

Our pride. Our wants. Us...

I've been asking myself lately what do I really do or not do that is a true sacrifice to my Lord. It's not tithing because not only is that required, but it is a joy to give back to Him, what is already His.

It's not working in the nursery. I love doing that and that fact that my sweet little Sawyer is in there, makes it definitely NOT a sacrifice!

I volunteer once a week at a clothing/food mission, but that's not a sacrifice because I love doing it. I come in contact with 40 or more families a week and am able to encourage them and share Jesus with them.

Do I even have a clue as to what a true sacrifice is?

No - but Jesus does. He became the ultimate sacrifice for my sins. For your sins. He did for us what we couldn't do for ourselves.

He took OUR place on the cross. A painful, cruel cross. He exchanged His life for ours. He paid our debt with His own precious blood. He became the payment for our sin. He became our redemption. He made the greatest sacrifice ever.

He gave so that we could receive.

So, what can I do that would be a genuine, authentic sacrifice?

Something that would indeed cost me to give up or do. Something that would take me out of my comfort zone. Something perhaps that I don't want to do.

I owe Christ nothing less than my whole heart and my whole life.

He deserves all of our energy. All of our talent. All of our committment.

All that we have and all that we are.

So, let's bring the sacrifice of praise, wholeheartedly into the House of the Lord!


Thursday, April 22, 2010

thankful for another THANKful thursday

I am joining Greg at for another Thankful thursday. If you haven't joined him yet, stop in and be part of this great event! Greg is a perfect combination of seriousness and humor. You won't be disappointed, I promise!

"Taste and see that the Lord is good" (Psalm 34:8)

I am thankful for the 2 precious little fellas above. Bryton and Sawyer have brought me immeasurable joy and I praise God for them daily. I love how anytime you ask Bryton a question beginning with the word 'who', his answer is always "God".  Even at age 3 he sees that God is the best answer to everything!

I am thankful for my baby girl, Ashlie and her husband Cody. Because of them, I have those 2 precious fellas above! They are teaching their boys about the Lord and for that I am so thankful. There is nothing more important than raising children up to know Jesus and His love.

I am so thankful for these adorable 3 grandyoungin's belonging to my oldest daughter. Could I be any more blessed? Mikaela (7) and Eli (4) are playing softball and t-ball and I am so grateful that I am able to be part of this experience in their lives. I love to watch them play and I just thank God that they have this opportunity. I am also thankful that I get to chase Mercie (2) around during practice and games. She keeps me young!

I am thankful for my daughter, Megan and her husband, Rod. They are the amazing parents of the 3 blessings above and teaching them daily to know and love Jesus. They are about 8 weeks away from adding another blessing to their family.

Oh, I am thankful for my sweet daughter, Melissa. I am still in awe of the miracle that God performed in her life 4 1/2 months ago. In November 2009, we couldn't even conceive the nightmare that we were about to embark on when she returned home from Africa after a 10 week mission trip. After being diagnosed with severe complicated Malaria and being close to dying, my sweet Lord reached down and touched Melissa with His mighty Hand. He healed her with His awesome power and I will thank Him for that every day of my life. Thank you Jesus, for the miracle of Melissa.


Monday, April 19, 2010

no room in the 'inn'

"And he did evil because he did not prepare his heart to seek the Lord" (2 Chronicles 12:14)

Are we preparing our hearts? Do we truly have a desire to seek the Lord? Are we hungering after the deeper things of Christ in a way that compels us to make our hearts ready? Do we know how to make our hearts ready?

In today's busy whirlwind of life, we find ourselves seeking many things. Things that occupy our time and our money. Things that occupy our thoughts. Things of the world that keep us focused in the wrong direction. There is too much other stuff vying for our attention.

We have too many toys. Too many gadgets. Too many activities. Too many choices. Too many. Too much.

Therefore our minds are flooded with earthly pleasures and worldly thoughts and we haven't left any room for Jesus. We've left NO space in our minds or lives for our Lord to be able to reside.

We've made no preparation in our hearts to truly and enthusiastically seek after Him. Just as there was no room in the inn for our precious Lord, there is no room in our busy lives.

We have left out the most important person. The One who should be first and foremost in our thoughts and actions. So, how do we rectify this? How do we prepare our hearts to be able to seek after Him?

1. Fall out of bed and fall on our faces. Begin each day at the feet of Jesus. Cry out, pour out and receive a blessing and a Word! Prayer is the key to communication with God.

2. Get in His Word first thing each morning. Even if it is just for a short period of time. Begin the day with His Word and inhale the amazing fragrance of the scriptures! You can always spend more time with Him later, but always start your day with a devotion.

3. Memorize His Word. Even if you only memorize one verse per month, it will be one of the greatest blessings to you. Hiding His Word in our hearts is precious to us and to Him.

4. Commune with Him all through the day. Small prayers of praise. Little talks with God. Keep your eyes and ears tuned to Him and you will be surprised what He will reveal to you.

Oh, friends, if we are to keep ourselves from doing evil, we have to make preparation ahead of time. We have to be fully determined and purposed in our walk. We have to keep ourselves armed with the truth of the Word.

We must be actively seeking the abundant and effective Spirit-filled life that Christ desires for us.

Prepare our hearts!
Seek after Him!
Make room for Him in the 'inns' of our lives.

Father, help us to make full preparation in our lives to be able to seek after You. Help us to have the desire to always put you first. Enable us to make good choices from the overload of "too much and too many" things that can preoccupy our minds. Fill our minds with You, Lord. Fill our hearts with longing for the abundant life of purpose and passion for our almighty Savior. Thank you for giving us your Word, that we might fill our hearts and thoughts with GOOD things. With HOLY things. With You, Lord. I pray all this in the mighty and saving name of Jesus. Amen.


Friday, April 16, 2010

the beauty God created

The beauty of God surrounds me.

The trees are clapping their hands.
The flowers are dancing in the wind.
The leaves frolic as they sway in the breeze.

God's creation astounds me. He astounds me!

His presence is evident in all creation.
Everywhere I look, the splendor of the Lord abounds.

In the heavens and the earth.
In the sun and the moon.

The rivers flow and joyfully sing the praises of God.
The wind blows and eagerly shouts Hallelujah to the Lord!

The thunder applauds and the lightning boldly
declares the majesty of the King.

Lift up your eyes and behold the creator.
Give honor to the One who sits above
the circle of the earth.
The One who dwells in the heavens.

The One who spoke the world into existence
by His mere breath.

The beauty of the Lord causes the heavens to rejoice.
The earth to sing its gladness.
The fields to shout with joy.

Oh, worship the Lord and give glory to His Name.
The Maker of the stars.
The Giver of life.
Keeper of eternity.
Everlasting God.
Creator of all.

"I have made the earth,
And created man on it.
I - My hands - stretched out
the heavens,
And all their host I have commanded"
(Isaiah 45:12)


Oh, precious Lord. Thank you for the beauty of Your creation. You blow my mind with every aspect of who You are. All creation was born out of the breath of your mouth. You spoke the very stars into existence. You are mighty and powerful and everywhere I look, I see the work of your Hands. I am awestruck by the magnitude of the universe and the fact that you hand painted each square inch of it. Help me to be ever mindful of your majesty. Ever mindful of your sovereignty. Let me never forget that You are God and that You are all I need.


Sunday, April 11, 2010

the storms of life - no match for my God

"He calms the storm,
So that its waves are still"
Psalm 107:29 (NKJV)

When the storms come -
When we are tempest tossed - where do we turn?

When the head winds rage
and we are tossed about - to whom do we call?

Do we try and do it on our own?
Do we attempt to weather the storm alone?

If our eyes aren't fasted securely on Jesus and if we
aren't diligently searching for the shore -
We can find ourselves out on the open sea amidst
the tumultuous waters.

Battered and weary.
Beaten and worn.

In desperation, we begin throwing cargo overboard.
Pitching out things that are dragging us down.
Ridding our lives of things that hinder.
Loosing the ties that bind.

But still, the waters toss us to and fro.
Waves crashing over our heads.
Covering us in utter darkness.

The gentle winds of life have
titanic forces that assail
us unmercifully.

Allowing discontent to take up residence.
Letting doubt and fear wash over our spirits.

We have enabled the gale force winds to hold
us at bay.

Keeping us captive in the eye of the storm.
Unable to move.

And unable to find that shelter and refuge in Christ.

And then...

We remember whose Hand calms the storm.

Whose voice can still the raging seas.
Whose very presence demands obedience of all creation.

It's time to fall on our faces and cry out to the Lord.
Seeking refuge.
Seeking shelter.
Seeking Him.

Allowing God to guide us - hold us - steer us.

Even centered in the midst of the storm,
we know that we are safe in His embrace.
Sheltered in His arms.
Calm in the storm.

He shows Himself mighty through His wonders.
Revealing His glory.
Communing with us.

Whether He stills the storm or just stills us,
He is the Master.

The Master of the winds and sea.
Master of all.
He is God.

Instilling His divine power in the storm.
We turn our eyes and focus to Him.
We place our lives securely in His Hands.

We trust - we abide - we follow.

Only then can we see past the horizon -
and glimpse the safety
of the shoreline approaching.


Thank you precious Lord, for being the One who can calm the storms of our lives. Thank you that we have security in your arms. Safety in your embrace. And shelter under the shadow of your mighty Wing.  Help us to always remember, that You hold the power over all creation and that even the winds and the sea obey your voice. When we are tossed about in the raging waters, thank you for your protection and guidance.  Thank you for showing us the shoreline and for steering us safely there.



Saturday, April 10, 2010


Layers -
peeled back
gently exposing
what lies beneath.

Old hurts.
long ago wounds...
things of the the past.

Present afflictions.
Today's problems.

Things to be dealt with -
areas of bondage,
rusted chains that bind.
Layers -
peeled back
to remind me.

Of burdens
already placed
at the foot of the Cross.

Never to be picked up again.

Things erased.
Slates wiped clean.
Transgressions forgotten.

He is telling me that
I have been forgiven.
Showing me
I need to let go.

Allowing me to see
the generous grace
He has already
poured out to me.

To see the
Lavish Love
He has so
bestowed on me.

The river of mercy
that flows from
His Throne
and continuously
covers me.

I see unworthiness.
He sees my worth.

I see my sin.
He see His Son's blood.

Slowly He replaces
the layers and I see...

I see the power of the Cross.
I see the redemption
 offered by
the Perfect Lamb
the Messiah.
the Son of God.

The freedom I can grasp hold
of through Jesus.

The past remains there.
Yesterdays are all laid at His feet.
Covered by His blood.
Redeemed through His sacrifice.

Now, I see the hope of tomorrow.
The promise of life eternal.
My worth.

Layer after layer contain,

Layer after layer of
Mercy and Grace.

Now peeled back, they
lovingly expose
only one thing.

The One and Only.


Thursday, April 8, 2010

THANKful Thursday - the Joy of Nanahood

I just love thankful Thursday's with Greg and am so glad that he is gracious enough to host this each week!

I can sum up this weeks thankfulness in just one photo. It's a picture of all 5 of my grandchildren. Now, lest you think that it was an easy picture to capture, let me tell you it wasn't!! Trying to get 5 kids to look at the camera and at least NOT cry isn't easy. Especially when the youngest 3 are 1,2, and 3 years old! Ha! When Megan's 4th precious little one arrives in June, there is no tellin' if I will ever get one of all of them together.

God has blessed me with amazing grandkids. Each one is special and each one has a distinct place of their own in this Nana's heart. I was just as excited at the birth of the last one as I was at the birth of the first one. Each new milestone that each sweet baby reaches is just as wonderful to me as the next. The 5th time around, I still get pumped with joy at each new tooth, each first step and each first word.

I am so thankful that God blessed me with 3 precious daughters and that through 2 of them (so far) I have 2 granddaughters and 3 (almost 4) grandsons. Oh, what a blessed Nana I am.

Thank you sweet Jesus, for the opportunity to be a grandmother. It has been the biggest thrill of my life and I pray that You equip me always to be an amazing example to them of living a life that is pleasing to You. May they always see Jesus in me and may they always know how much I love them. I give you all the praise and honor for the awesome privilege of "Nanahood".

"Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord. The fruit of the womb is a reward" (Psalm 127:3)

Captivated by Him,

Monday, April 5, 2010

oh, to sit at His Feet

I've read several books lately that were extolling the marvelous, virtuous qualities of having a 'Mary Spirit." Basically, having a Mary spirit is possessing the unction or even the ability to sit quietly and intently at the precious Feet of Jesus.

And not even to just sit at His Feet, but in essence to recline there and savor the stillness that ensues when the almighty presence of our Savior is felt.


I so desire to have that Mary spirit. To be able to stop all the busyness that my Martha tendencies dictate and focus solely and wholeheartedly on Jesus. To just stop and not be so concerned about dishes and dust. But to allow myself the unabashed freedom of being totally zeroed in on the Lord and completely open to hearing His voice.

I need to learn how to put the world on hold. To realize that those daily things that so readily preoccupy me  can be postponed when the Lord beckons me to just sit.

At His Feet.

My spirit is desperate for Jesus. It cries out in deep need of some one-on-one time with my Lord.  There exists such a deep longing in my soul for intimate fellowship with God. There is nothing that I enjoy or crave more than to be in His presence. Snuggled in His arms. Wrapped tightly in His embrace. Allowing the Holy Spirit to flow in and through me and minister deeply.

Sitting. Basking.

Inhaling His wonder. Breathing in the sweet fragrance of His Love.

Letting it just wash over me and saturate me to the fullest. Seeking a closeness to Christ that is unrivaled by all else.

Desiring a life that reflects His image and demands my all.

Being a more diligent doer of the Word instead of the world.

Not focusing on my inadequacies and imperfections, but on the power that the Word of God has to gloriously transform me into wholeness and the likeness of Christ.

Running to the Mercy Seat.

Falling at His Feet.
Emptied of self.
Ready to be filled.

Heart wide open.


Seeking only Him and His presence.

Ready to hear Him speak. Feeling His tender grace and His lavish love.

Reclining at the feet of Jesus.

For however long it takes to make me look like Him.


Thursday, April 1, 2010

THANKful Thursday! - He is Worthy!


Thank you Greg for this awesome way to share our thankfulness with others!

* I am so thankful that God sent His Son from the perfection of heaven to this earth.

John 3:16 tells us, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life"

*I am thankful that because He loved us so much, He provided the payment for our sins so that we could be forever free from that bondage. When we are His, we are forgiven because Jesus paid the debt for us on the Cross.

Romans 5:8 tells us, "But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us"

* I am thankful that we are no under the law anymore  but because of His precious atoning blood, we are under grace. Generous grace that He pours out daily.

Romans 6:14 says, "For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace" 

* I am thankful that the grave couldn't hold my Jesus. He died on that Cross and was buried and then just as God said, He rose again on the 3rd day! Praise You, Lord for a Risen Savior!

Mark 16:6 says, "But he said to them, "Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazarath, who was crucified. He is risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid Him"

* I am thankful that one day, the eastern sky will bust wide open and He will appear in the clouds!!

"Behold, I am coming quickly,..." (Revelation 22:12)
"Then we who are alive and remain, shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord." (1 Thessalonians 4:17)

I praise You, Lord, as we celebrate this awesome Easter season and the glorious resurrection of Your precious Son. Thank you for giving us a savior - that if we put our faith and trust in Him and Him only, we can have forgiveness of sins and eternal life with You. You are wonderful and You are powerful and You are worthy of all of our worship and praise. I love You with all that I am.

In His mighty name,