Category: women’s ministry

Finding God’s Presence ~ When Discouragement Fights the Wind

Just took a brisk walk with Blue up to the meadow and back. It’s bitter cold outside today. Wind howling. Millions of tiny snowflakes swirling.

Discouragement tried to take over my thoughts the past few days. It showed in my hunched-over shoulders as I pressed into the wind.

A loved one is very sick. Finances, in the natural, will never be able to stretch enough to cover Christmas, a Christmas wedding, and medical expenses. (Even though I know that I know God has never failed us, sometimes the flesh kicks in with worry.)

And my daughter’s healing from knee surgery seems to be going backwards for some reason …

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Finding God’s Presence ~ A Thankful Heart Leads the Way When We Need Him Most

I’m learning a lot about thanksgiving — maintaining a thankful heart in spite of very difficult circumstances, understanding the importance of a thankful heart, recognizing how a thankful heart is a gift and tool from the Lord to lift us above the difficult places.

This type of thanksgiving runs deep through our veins bringing life to our weary bones.

It swaddles me at night when I close my eyes for much needed sleep and say, “Thank You, Lord. It is well with my soul.”

And mean it.

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Finding God’s Presence ~ When God Breaks Through the Canopy of Shadows Surrounding Me

The aged apple tree stretched toward the heavens with its thin, finger-like branches. It grew on the forest’s edge surrounded by pine, oak and hemlocks.

It grew in spite of its conditions, quite obviously a happenstance, a surprise to its forest shadows.

[Tweet “The aged apple tree stretched toward the heavens with its thin, finger-like branches. @NanJonesAuthor #amwriting #FindingGodsPresence”]

I watched this tree throughout the seasons — its burst of fresh green in the spring, blossoms like delicate voile against the rough and aged bark. Summer delivered apples red embellishing the forest’s edge with ornamental color and fed the deer grazing below.

And now, as autumn has its last hoorah before winter’s chill, my eye saw something new …

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Finding God’s Presence ~ Where is God When Days Are Long and Nights Are Longer Still

The days had been long. The nights even longer. Deep in my spirit I heard His delicate whisper calling me to come, to be still and remember that He is God.

My heart longed for peace.

My body, weary from a fibromyalgia flare, yearned for strength and energy.

I sat beneath the soft lamplight in the stillness of morning, my Bible in hand.  Flipping through its worn pages I found myself drawn to the Psalms. Oh my goodness! What comfort we find in these words of David — his authentic faith wrought with fiery trials, yet proclaiming the faithful promises of God.

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Finding God’s Presence ~ A Prayer for Peace When Clinging Desperately to the Cross

Lord, You are God of the whole earth, the Holy One of Israel. You have provided for us a covenant of peace — perpetual. Never-ending. Never-waivering. Always available for Your child.

Thank You for Your perfect peace that manifests so beautifully in the midst of life’s perfect storms — those times we cling desperately to the Cross. Unemployment. Broken relationships. Prodigal children. Terminal illness. Tragedies. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but You have promised to deliver us out of them all.

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Faith Notes ~ Karen Friday: Finding Hope When Darkness Consumes

Today’s guest on Faith Notes is a dear friend, Karen Friday, affectionately known as Karen Girl Friday. We met on Twitter a few years ago because she is a pastor’s wife and, well … I wrote a book for pastors’ wives. As it turned out Karen is also a writer and speaker, just like me. She has a precious, beautiful spirit fully dedicated to her Lord and delights in sharing hope with others. Be sure to read all the way through — Karen is offering a giveaway for those who subscribe to her blog. I’m sure her testimony will encourage you as it has me, because we are all on this journey of faith together.

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Finding God’s Presence ~ Eclipse. When God Commanded the Earth to Be Still

We gathered on the front steps, anticipation filling the air. The peak of the total eclipse was only minutes away — the awe of this historical moment quieted each of us with amazement. The moon’s shadow moved slowly over the ridge covering the afternoon with darkness.

A holy hush fell over our mountain — stillness like I’ve never known before. Ominous. Commanding. A stillness that permeated the heart and soul and mind.

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Finding God’s Presence ~ When Tiny Black Globes Stare Directly Into Mine

It’s said that the eyes are the window to our souls, and though I could not see into his eyes, I had the overwhelming feeling that those tiny black globes were staring directly into mine. Searching. Questioning.

He just hovered there, bobbing up and down, left and right. I gripped my coffee cup and dared not move lest the hummingbird became frightened and darted away from the window. #FindingGodsPresence

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Finding God’s Presence ~ A Prayer When You’re Clinging to The Cross

Thank You for Your abiding presence. I don’t know what I would do without You, Lord. When I am overwhelmed, I find myself clinging to You. When I am afraid, I run to You and find safety. When I have no peace, I remember that You Yourself, are my peace, and You open my eyes to see You.

I know many who are afflicted — who are clinging desperately to the Cross …

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