Praying

prayer

Don’t forget how vital a few moments can be.

We stand in the gap for our children. We need to be diligent, and ready to pray at all times!

May the Lord bless you and protect you and your families!

 

Tara

Advertisements

Storms of Life

Maybe I have written about this before…

I have read this chapter Mark 4:35-41 so many times, and thought about how Jesus is always there in the storm. The whole, “Peace be Still!” thing has been a comfort.

What I have never really paid attention to is the fact that Jesus led them into the storm.  In verses 35-36 it says, “On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” 36 And leaving the crowd, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. And other boats were with him.” (ESV)

Jesus knew there would be a storm but He fell asleep.  Does that mean He wasn’t aware? Did that mean He knew everything was going to be OK, even though it didn’t seem that it would? Did He know how afraid the disciples were going to be? Did He not care?

I have lots of questions and maybe you do too!

He knew all of the things that were happening just as He knows what is happening in our lives. He cares and He is ever present in times of trouble as Psalm 46:1 states.  This proves it.

Though He is near, it doesn’t mean we won’t suffer. It doesn’t mean life isn’t scary and unfair.  It does mean that in the midst of sorrow during a miscarriage, He is there.  In the death of a loved one, He is there.  In the chaos of life He is there. In the broken marriage and weeping, He is there. He has the ability to calm the storm. He is present.

Why do we have to suffer though? Why did He lead the disciples into the storm!?  Why does He allow bad things to happen to us?

There are so many answers to this and I know only what God has done in my life, and only that can I share.

I had 3 miscarriages. One every year whilst we lived in Africa.  I wept. I questioned. I cried out angrily against God. (He is big enough to handle it.) I begged for answers.

I did not realize until much later, when God gave us 3 children that He allowed that to happen, not because He wanted me to suffer and be in pain, but because His plan for me was different.

He wanted Sammy and I to adopt.

I lost 3 biological children and He blessed me with 3 amazing adopted daughters.  Not that my babies weren’t important, and not that I didn’t grieve with each loss. I did. I endured great heartache as did my husband and family.

No. He needed our family to take in 3 girls who needed us for parents.  I can honestly say that I would not have adopted 3 children had I borne three.  He knew that our three daughters would need a home.  He knew there was a storm in my heart, and He was making room in my heart for 3 daughters from the womb of another.  Their pain, their loss and grief was present also. Yet, He left my grieving arms empty until each one of them needed a home.  With each adoption, God has grown me. He has taken me into yet another storm.  Each child brings their own trauma, pain and anguish.  Not that it is their fault, but with adoption, there are things we can’t control. We don’t know what happened while they were growing in their mother’s womb.  We don’t know how God held their parents in the storm.

 

Truth.

 

God allowed our suffering to help someone else with their need.

Sometimes that may be the ultimate goal. We know that He works all things together for good to those that love Him and are called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)

We are vessels in which He dwells.

We can choose to accept and embrace the Lord in our anguish, or push Him out of our boat and weather the storm alone. I don’t know about you, but I want Him in the boat with me. I can’t imagine being alone suffering the storms of life without my Master of the storm.

Friend, in your ache and pain, know that at some point things will become clear. God knows what you are immersed in. If you have chosen to stay in your sin, leave it far behind you! Run from it! Change!  If you are in the storm because Jesus led you there, be bold. Know that He is there, in the boat with you.  He is ready to bring you safely through to the other side in due time.

“Even the wind and the waves obey Him!”(Mark 4:41)

He is there friend. Take heart. He has us safely nestled under His wings. Even in the midst of the storm.

 

I love you!

Tara

Another Leak

We have a home in the country though we have city water.  It exceeds the pressure limit for our pipes. We have to put the valve on it regulate the pressure to make it stop causing pin hole leaks in the plastic pipes connected to our water heater.

Problem solved.

Well what happens when my man has fixed it, but the valve isn’t working properly? You guessed it! Another leak.

I walked into the laundry room after my workout at 6 am.  I had put a load in the laundry when I went out to the shop at 5:30.  I was stooping down to put the laundry in the dryer when I heard it. I immediately stopped to pull off the water heater door and heard that distinct hissing of the tiny pin-hole leak.  How can something so tiny, cause so much noise and water to spew out and do such damage?

I am uncertain how long it has been leaking, or how extensive the damage, but it has to be fixed.  Bless my husband’s heart.  He gets to fix it again with the replacement part. Not thrilling I assure you!

First, I am thankful for a wonderfully gifted man who is able to do repairs on our home and second, I know there is a lesson here.

How often do we think we have something fixed in our life, only to have it happen again?  We vow that we are done with yelling, or overspending, or overeating. (Insert whatever sin you and I may struggle with here.)  We get help to deal with our issues, and when things seem to be smooth sailing and all is well, we do the thing we didn’t want to do!

We aren’t failures.

We just need to be repaired.

I ask myself, “Am I spending the time listening to what God has for me?” Am I spending time in the Word doing as He instructs? Am I accepting and putting into place the repairs He requires? Do I stop what I am doing to take the time to be a good mom or wife? Do I put my needs on hold to care for someone in my family?

I’m not saying that what I need is less important, nor am I saying my needs don’t matter.  Not by any means. I am simply saying, I may need to stop and fix an issue before I continue my task so there isn’t any more damage done.

The laundry was still waiting for me when I found the leak and tried to deal with it.  Just as my desires will be.

What leaks are you needing to stop and fix today? What things do I need to tend to?

I pray that God will show us so that He can repair us!

Love you!
Tara

Cheap Date or Sweet Date?

My youngest and I went to get a few groceries last night after church. She asked if we could have a date night.  I thought, “I just want to go home! The kids still need to eat dinner, lunches and dishes have to be taken care of, baths need to happen, and the dogs need to be fed, chicken eggs collected, and the cat put up.”

Deep breath.

The Holy Spirit said to take the time and show her love. She needed it.

So we stopped.

It is a rare thing to have the opportunity to just be alone with one of the girls.  We call any time alone a date night. I let her pick chips and cookies for the week, a special drink, her own gum, a treat to share. To some, this may not be that big of a deal and it cost under $13, but to her it was one on one. We were just chatting at the counter and I told her I was enjoying my date with her.

Someone said, “Oh, you are on a date? That’s a cheap date.”  It wasn’t meant to be hurtful. It wasn’t meant to be harmful. Yet, when we got in the car and she was telling me about her day at a million miles an hour. She stopped and said, “This is a cheap date. I wish I could have done something different. Don’t you?”  I said, “No honey this is just perfect.  It is later at night. We have been out of the house since 7 am and here it is 8:30.

In her mind, 2 words lessened the importance of our time together. “Cheap Date”, is what she now thought.

“I am not worth much.”

What a sad thought!  She is worth so much more than that!  I assured her that no matter what money was spent, time together was priceless. I told her I loved her.

How many times have we chose to believe what others said about us?  What words change our mood from joyful to sorrowful? Why does it make us feel like we are worth less than God says we are?

I just did a quick search and the below link is what I found with some verses. That is just the tip of the iceberg!

https://www.openbible.info/topics/our_worth_to_god

Our worth is not bound up in the words of others, when God’s truth is there.

We do not have to wait for our friends to approve or like a social media post to be successful or loved.

God loves you.

God loves me.

Have a date with Him.

Get your bible and a cup of coffee, and rest in what He says of you. Talk to Him a million miles an hour and let Him encourage you. Let His words speak peace and healing. Let His truth be what we listen to!

 

I love you,

Tara

Only God

There is a darkness in our souls that only God can fill.

The question is do you and I think He’ll fit the bill?

 

There is a darkness in our minds that only God can light.

The question is do you and I think l think it’s worth the fight?

 

There is darkness behind our eyes and in our hearts so large.

Are you and I willing to let only God be in charge.

 

In times of doubt, in times, of fear, in times we have no clue.

If we trust in Him in all we do, only God will carry us through.

 

We don’t know what tomorrow holds or where we will be.

This I know, He loves us so, and only God can set us free.

 

Only God can make a way where there seems to be no way. His promise is true.  “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all of your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6

He will make it straight. Life has twists and turns and leads us down paths we would rather not follow.  You may be there right now. He will do what He says. I trust Him. Will you?

God, please help us as we walk down some perilous paths.  Paths that we have to walk down by force or by choice. Help us to fully trust in You when the outcome we pray for doesn’t seem possible.  Please protect our family, our children and our loved ones today. Guide and direct them in paths of righteousness for Your namesake. Though we may walk through the valley of death. We don’t have to fear evil because You are with us. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen

 

I Love you,

Tara

 

 

Phony or Faux Me?

 

I have spent many years trying to be someone I thought others wanted me to be. Fighting against what I thought I should be, rather than being the woman God wanted me to be. I have tried to please my husband doing things I thought he wanted me to do. (He didn’t even want that!) I was in the habit of being so serious all the time and not having fun.  Do you know how exhausting that is?

I was thinking the other day about what a phony I was.  Not intentionally mind you, but a phony because I was trying to be something that I was not.  Then I started thinking about words like “faux painting” and “faux fur” and other things that are faux.  Here I was being a Faux ME.  I was trying to be someone I thought I should be, and placed value in something that was valueless. A fake me.  I felt so empty and discouraged. Empty being Faux!  Empty being Phony!

God laid it out for me.

“…but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.” I Peter 3:4

I don’t have to try to be a certain kind of wife or mother. I need to be the wife and mom God asks me to be.  A woman who loves deeply.   A woman who meets the needs of her family. One who is a helpmate for her man!

I am the funny jokester that cries at commercials, cap wearing, has crazy sticking upC9057C55-BD31-4960-A6FE-4A0FF539B3E4

hair now and then, loves her family kinda gal. I can also trap gophers like nobody’s business! 100 and counting!!!

I am free to be free! Free from the bondage of trying to be someone else.

I am not a phony or a faux me. I am exactly where I need to be, doing what I need to do. I work hard.  I love my family and try my best to honor God.

He filled me up with truth.

I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I am rejoiced over with singing. I was bought with a price. I am forgiven and set free. I am loved. I am cherished. I am worthwhile.

You are all of these as well.

 

I love you!

Tara

48E6C2D5-DD71-4E76-8B2F-B395A48F03BE

The Fog

One of the girls has to be at work anywhere from 6:15 a.m. to 8:00 a.m., as she is a football trainer.  Logistically it made sense for me to take her so that Sammy and the other girls didn’t have to leave a full hour early to get to school and I would head to work a little bit early. (Or a lot early.)

She has been able to do all of her night driving and some of her day time driving during this time.  Sometimes she sleeps! Surprise! She’s a teenager.

One morning after I dropped her off and headed on to work, the fog was so intense that I just couldn’t see.  I had to slow down and drive so cautiously. It was a strange feeling to turn corners that I have turned on the back country roads before.  Strange that I knew there were stop lights ahead, but through the fog and mist, they were unseen.

952F249F-91E1-4FC6-A26A-6510C2678C6C

I turned one bend in the road and saw a brand new SUV surrounded by police cars.  It had hit a tree.  My first thought as I was waved on was a prayer for the people in the vehicle. I also prayed for the safety of the policeman who were there.

Our lives are like that.  We know the direction we are heading, but we don’t know when a new change of life may come, or if there is a new struggle to face.  We don’t know if we are going to crash into something unseen that can be a major problem for us which may cause a painful, life altering stop.

He is there in the darkness and struggle. He knows what we need before we need it.  Just as the policeman was slowing me down to safely avoid the accident, God guides us through life’s obstacles and challenges.

So.

Stop when you get to the light if it’s red. Don’t blow through God’s no thinking you know better!

Listen to directions for safety. If He is in the situation, listen to His voice and do as He says.

Slow down and seek Him for guidance through this earthly fog! He always knows where we are even though we may not!

 

Love you,

Tara

Blurry Blessings

The other day my youngest daughter found an old point and click digital camera and was taking pictures left and right. Asking everyone to pose for her. (At odd times I might add!)

I was trying to give her tips and hints to help her take better pictures.

  1. Hold still. When you are moving, the picture will be blurry
  2. Take a breath before pressing the button
  3. If it’s dark, and you don’t have the flash on, your picture will not turn out well
  4. When you are taking a picture of the sunset, it never turns out as beautiful as the real thing

Just a few things I learned over the years whilst taking pictures.  I suggested those things more than once and she probably got tired of hearing me.  She just wanted to explore with the camera and take pictures.  To experience life through the camera lens. Here I am trying to guide her and help her, and she doesn’t want to learn.

Is that not like us with God?

  1. We just want to go through life just running and He just wants us to be still and know that He is God. Psalm 46:10
  2. Not everything has to be spoken. Take a breath before speaking. Words aren’t always required. If they are, let’s make them safe.  “The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit.”  Proverbs 15:4, “Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity.” Proverbs 21:23
  3. How often do we listen to what He is saying when He is trying to help us and shine His light to show us the best picture of love? Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
  4. I am so concerned about how I think things should look for others to see, that I forget that He has laid that plan already. For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

My picture of the “Sunset” doesn’t look like His!

I don’t have to know everything that is going on to live.  I just need to rest in Him.  He has this!

There is a flip side to that for the parent in me… Sometimes it is OK for a picture to blurry.  It is a reminder to me to just let her experience life.  Not to be worried so much about a perfect picture, but just to let her have fun. Be a kid who is playing with an old camera trying to figure it out.

It’s really ok to have blurry photos.

There is a lesson (blessing) here as well.

How often do I overlook what she is trying to tell me because I am in such hurry to get to where we are going?  Maybe I am working on something that doesn’t really have a deadline, but I just want it done now. I need to show her love in the every day things. The things that seem like they aren’t as important as what I am doing, are just as important to her. I need to hold still for her. Look through her lens and enjoy the blurry blessings that unfold daily.

So let’s take a breath, hold still, and remember the Son is right there holding us. Painting the sunset or sunrise.  His pictures are just more beautiful than we can comprehend, yet He is ever so patient!

This photo I took while on a fishing trip with my husband. It is nowhere near as beautiful as it was in person. 🙂

sunrise

Wake Up

 

Wake up from the sleep of darkness.

Wake up from self-pity and sin.

 

Wake up from the fear of gloom.

Wake up from the evil within.rain.png (1 of 1)

 

Wake up from the feelings of sorrow.

Wake up from the gut wrenching pain.

 

Wake up from the heart stopping agony.

Wake up and feel His rain.

 

The rain cleans the air and the earth.

The rain gives the dry ground new life.

 

The rain causes flowers to open.

The rain puts and ending to strife

 

The rain awakens your senses.

The rain washes the grime away.

 

The rain brings new life to the present.

The rain brings healing today.

 

I pray that if you are in a dark place, God will send a cleansing rain to refresh you.  A rain to bring new life.  A rain to wash you clean.

“Come now, let us reason together”, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool. Isaiah 1:18

 

I love you!

Tara

Perfect Peace and Rest

Perfect peace and rest. I put that daily to the test.

When abiding in You, your peace surrounds, comes flooding through.

If I fall, You are there. You have proven that You care.

In my darkness, You are light. Protect me through the fiercest fight.

In my sorrow, you catch my tears. You wipe my wounds and bind up fears.

You are present night and day. Even if the earth gave way.

You are rock and shield to me. You draw me safely near to Thee.