I Need a Hug, Lord. Hide Me Beneath Your Wing

Lord, I know and I believe You are God of the mountain and God of the valleys — God of the good times and God of the hard times. Because You are sovereign Lord. Eternal. All-knowing and all-present.

I seem to be in a valley, where the winds of trial howl and the shadows fall easily. I need a hug, Lord — tangible evidence of Your presence. Hide me beneath the shadow of Your wings until these calamities pass me by.

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Give Thanks, Even If Circumstances Say Otherwise

I am so very thankful for each of you, my readers. I want you to know that you are the Beloved of God, the apple of His eye … His special treasure. Even if circumstances say otherwise, give thanks for who He is. Trust His heart. Allow Him to gently lift your chin and tilt your head so that you might look up and behold His glory.

In the light of His presence, the darkness must flee.

In the light of His presence, our difficult places grow smaller because of His greatness.

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The Cross Precedes the Crown. Must I Carry It, Lord?

Lord, You are high and lifted up! You are Lord of all, worthy of all praise. Before the crown, You endured the Cross — before the resurrection, there must be the crucifixion.

Even for us, Your children.

You tell us to pick up the Cross and follow You, that in the sufferings of Christ we will find You. Some days, I don’t think I’m strong enough. Must I carry it, Lord?

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The Purpose of Transition and the Hush of Glory

Autumn reds have transformed into deepest burgundy velvet; lemon yellows now reflect burnished gold. Stark branches stretch towards the heavens and yield to the purpose of transition from fall into winter, acknowledging the hands of their Creator, the Lord our God.

I picked up my steps as I rounded the curve along our county road. A strong north wind watered my eyes and blushed my cheeks. But my thoughts turned towards Jesus and His unfailing love, especially His mercy, new every morning.

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Steady My Heart, Lord. Life has Been Overwhelming

Lord, Your lovingkindness is better than life. Your love sustains me, comforts me, and gives me the strength to endure. Steady my heart, Lord. Life has been hard and I’m feeling overwhelmed.

When I look to You I grow stronger. When I speak truth over the enemy’s lies, anxiety withdraws into the shadows from whence it came.

And Your peace returns.

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Encountering God Where a Bench Awaited Me

I grabbed my jacket and took off for a much needed walk. The periwinkle sky of November illuminated the remaining red and yellow leaves of fall. Sunshine bathed me in warmth as I labored up the hill to the white clapboard church where a bench awaited me.

My mind searched for reassurance and fought the unsettled spirit whispering in my ear. I reached the blessed bench. Sitting down, I rested my elbows on my knees, cupping my face in my hands. A frustrated tear trickled down my cheek as I allowed the Lord to search my anxious thoughts.

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Jesus, You’re My Hope. Fix My Eyes On You

Lord, You have carried me safe thus far. Through the wind, through the rain, through the fire, and through the turbulent waters, You have been with me. Jesus, You’re my hope. Fix my eyes on You.

Thank You for being my sure place. Thank You for being the One on whom I can depend. When life is hard, I know I am not alone.

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An Explosion of Light … In More Ways Than One

Ominous, black-stained clouds crept over the mountain ridge. Trees bowed to the ground under the influence of fierce winds as raindrops like bullets shot from the sky. Long, slender fingers of electricity lit up the darkened heavens. One touched the hill across the street with an explosion of intense light. I screamed and quickly ran from the window as my home shuttered against the thunderous boom.

But just as quickly as the midday became midnight, and the gentle breeze became fierce winds, the storm moved on.

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Your Mercy is New Every Morning. Open My Eyes to See

Lord, as sure as the sunrise is Your faithfulness to me. Open the eyes of my heart to see and remember that I am Your child. Your mercy is new every morning — Your love will never fail me.

Strengthen me to recognize Your hand in everything that concerns me. Remind me to look for You, for when I seek You with all of my heart, I will find You.

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Seeking Peace Among Patches of Glory and Grace

I tucked my feet beneath me on the couch and spread the warm fleece of a blanket over my legs. Sipping coffee, seeking peace, I stared out over the browning landscape as winter cold approached. Only random patches of autumn’s glory remained. Hold-outs. Stubborn like me, and not ready to let go, but knowing God’s grace all the same.

I was struck by how the trees with branches bare stretched, almost yearning toward the October sky, reaching toward the heavenly places.

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Hold Me Fast, Lord … I Think I’m Slipping

Lord, take my hand and lead me through these difficult places. Hold me fast. Don’t let go — some days it feels like I’m slipping.

In my spirit, I know I’m not. You will never let me stumble or fall. My choices could cause that, but not You. You love me with an everlasting love that will never fail me.

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Anticipating God’s Sustenance, Gathering His Grace

Down below the old apple tree, there’s a meadow where goldenrods grow freely and the mountain stream sings its soothing melody. Each day, just before dusk, we put out deer corn. The deer have come to expect it and often come early, anticipating their sustenance before we’ve cast it across the slender grass.

We delight in providing for them.

We delight in their trust.

But they must journey from the forest wilderness to receive the blessing.

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