Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Watch where you're stepping....

In Proverbs 4:26-27 God's Word tells us:

Proverbs 4:26-27 (ESV)
Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure.  
Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil.

Proverbs 4:26-27 (MSG)
Watch your step, and the road will stretch out smooth before you.
 Look neither right nor left; leave evil in the dust.

Isn't it interesting to realize that from the time we start walking until the time we leave this earth we hear these words spoken to us "watch where you're stepping"?   We heard them as children and we have said them to our children.   And with few exceptions it has always been spoken to us and or we have spoken it to our children or someone else as a warning to protect them from harm. And no matter what stage of life we are in now...someone has probably spoken those words to you this year. 

I love the opening word in verse 26 (ESV) of those verses, "ponder".  Ponder, as defined by Webster, means to consider carefully; to think about something carefully over a period of time.  Notice the word ponder does not mean to worry!   Look at the synonyms for the word : consider, think about, think over, contemplate, deliberate, wonder about, muse, brood over, mull over, meditate upon, and weigh up.   My favorite synonym is weigh up.   In other words, you better be sure you can handle the path you are taking your feet down!  Can you carry the weight of the consequence if you step off the path? 

Then we move to verse 27 and I like the wording, "leave evil in the dust".  I have this picture in my mind of a person on a dirt road all a sudden realizing they should not be where they are and they throw the car in drive and speed off with a cloud of dust behind them and clear sailing ahead.

Can I encourage you today to "weigh" the path of your feet?  It only takes one wrong step to throw you off the side of a cliff.  Sure someone may find you and save you from death but would a few broken limbs, ribs, a severe head injury and/or internal damage to your organs be worth it?  I would hope not.

Spiritually speaking our lack of "weighing" the path of our feet not only brings harm to our walk with God, our intimacy, our joy, etc., it also affects others’ lives as well.  It can be a stumbling block, leading their feet down a wrong path.  It can cause others to see you as a hypocrite and God's Word and principles as meaningless.  So I ask you to "ponder", my dear friends, the path of your feet this week and ask yourself, “is it time to leave evil in the dust?”.   If you are walking steady and choosing the right path daily then praise Him because we can't do it apart from Him!

Love you all mucho.....Keep praying for Burkina Faso - we are looking at one particular place as of this writing.  Pray God's best for the missionary women in that area as we prepare to go.


Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Did God tell you to?

Sunday night I had the opportunity to break bread with an awesome group of believers from Eastside Baptist Church in Ft. Smith, AR.   I shared with them about Pure Joy International and what God is accomplishing through the ministry and how they could become involved by praying, gifting, giving and going.  Their hearts were so attentive as I shared.  They don't know this (unless they are reading this blog..(smile) ) but their hearts for God were an encouragement to me!

Then Monday night I made my way to Vilonia, AR where I sat down with our ladies from this part of the state that will be traveling to Tanzania with us in November.   It was soooo sweet to hear their hearts for God as they shared about some of their life journeys with each other and as we prayed together for one another, for the missionary women that have registered for the retreat, and for all the provision for the trip.  Only in Christ can complete strangers meet and be of one accord so quickly! 

Then…Tuesday I made it to Searcy, AR to visit with Pastor Hays of Valley Baptist Church.  Wow, what a sweet spirit this man has for the things of God.   Melinda and I had the privilege of being part of their missions conference in early spring.  Pastor Hays took a great liking to the mission of Pure Joy International which is "To help keep our missionaries and missionary families on the field of service where God has called them to serve."  As leaders in ministry our pastors and their families are very aware of how trying it can be when you are a target for the enemy on the front lines of ministry.  Therefore, they can relate to those missionaries on the front lines overseas.  Pastor Hays and I had a great visit and there are several women from their church prayerfully considering being a part of our Burkina Faso team.  I can't wait to see what God is up to with our Burkina Faso team as it is coming together.

Last week I had a dear sister call me up and say “I believe God has put it on my heart to go to Burkina Faso with you.”  I love that soooo much!  God does put the teams together according to His good will and pleasure…which brings me to the head line of this blog today, "Did God tell you to?"

Many times women that are considering travelling with us will automatically ask me, "How much is the trip going to cost?”  I always respond with, "That's the wrong question.”  The question is "Has God been stirring your heart about this trip, at this time, to this particular group of women?"  If the answer to that question is "yes" then He will take care of making sure you have the provision to go.   I was talking to the Missions Coordinator from Valley Baptist church Tuesday after my time with the pastor and shared this thought with her.  She told me that it made so much sense.  She went on to tell me how so many times people look at what they can afford first and base their decisions on that.  I agreed that I see that in ministry all the time.   Therefore, so many times we in the body of Christ miss out on seeing God do the seemingly impossible.  We depend on our resources or lack of to make our decisions instead of trusting God. 

So I ask you today, consider many decisions are you making about your life that leave Christ out because you are measuring your choices by your own resources (what you can do)?  We in the body of Christ are weak in our "faith" because we decide for God, based on our provision instead of His Word and then trusting Him to provide for whatever is needed in our marriages, families, churches, ministries, businesses, etc. 

So, has God stirred your heart to do something that you immediately step away from because you are looking at it from a worldly, physical, and emotional perspective?  If so, roll up those pants legs and let's do a little "water walking, Peter!"  On Christ this solid Rock I stand all other ground is sinking sand, all other ground is sinking sand!

Love you all,


Wednesday, May 14, 2014


This week as I have read through my daily readings of the Chronological Bible I was taken by Tuesday’s reading from Psalm 69:1-3.   The reason being is because I get to hear so many people's hearts and see their struggles, like many of my peers in the counseling arena. If I had to put a word to how many people are 'feeling' today I would use the word, 'overwhelmed'.  If I had to put a word picture to it, it would be Psalm 69:1-3. 

Psalm 69:1-3 (ESV)
Save me, O God! For the waters have come up to my neck.   I sink in deep mire, where there is no foothold; I have come into deep waters, and the flood sweeps over me.  I am weary with my crying out; my throat is parched. My eyes grow dim with waiting for my God.

Psalm 69:1-3 (MSG)
God, God, save me! I'm in over my head, Quicksand under me, swamp water over me; I'm going down for the third time. I'm hoarse from calling for help, bleary-eyed from searching the sky for God.

Let me encourage you today.  If you are reading this saying, “that is so how I feel,” don't think for one second that there aren't people around you every day that aren't feeling the very same thing.  In fact, some of those people are your closest friends.  But just like they don't know you are feeling that way, you don't know they are.   The reason...we don't want to look unspiritual to each other like we are not trusting God.  So, we keep allowing the waters to rise up to our necks without asking for help.   And to top it off we try to get our footing on the things of this world instead of God our Rock.  Therefore, like David we feel like we are sinking in deep mire where there is nothing to stand on. If you relate to David's words in those first two verses, make sure you are relating to him in the last.   “He says, I'm weary with crying out.” Are you seeking God so intently in the situation that you are weary, your throat is sore from it?  Are you waiting on Him in desperation for help, deliverance, and strength?  Then don't let the enemy lie to you......HE will show up!  But you have a part...get honest with HIM.   I love that about King David!!  He spilled his guts to God!  He didn't color it up either! He was raw about his feelings about himself, his enemies, and God.  God loves authenticity!  He hears the cries of His children. 

Burkina Faso is straight ahead of us.  We are four months out with lots of preparation ahead of us.  If you are interested in being on this team contact me at Our dates are Sept.13-20, 2014.  Also if you know missionary women in that part of West Africa please began to make them aware.  I will announce when registration will open up online in the next month or so. 

There are lots of awesome things going on with the ministry as more churches and individuals get on board with what God is up to with Pure Joy.  If you want to know how to be involved, contact me at the email address previously given.

Love you all tons... Keep waiting...HE will show up!


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Walking in the Light of a Friend...

"When the light of Christ is unable to shine through in your life......walk in the light of a friend until it does!"

Many years ago I was one of the teachers for a retreat held at a large encampment.  There were probably 2,000 +  women in attendance.  We would begin the evening with praise and worship followed by a main speaker. Then we would break out into many small groups that you could go to based on your interest.  Well, this particular evening as I was leaving one teaching area to go to another area I realized it had gotten really dark in that hour of time.  The teaching areas could be a significant distance apart over rock, paths, roads, etc.  As I started to gently move across the path, a young lady came up beside me with a flashlight and said, "hey, you can walk in my light."  That statement really hung on my heart that night and marinated for days.  Of course, she meant literally I could share the light of her flashlight as we walked side by side.  But for days I could only think of all the spiritual applications to the statement she made.

I don't know about you but most times I am "walking in the light" loving Jesus and trusting Him with life and all its circumstances.  Then all a sudden -  BOOM - lights out!  Something happens...divorce, family issues, loss of job, death , tornados (as we have seen this past week in our area), wayward child, alcohol, drugs, and or maybe someone has hurt you, disappointed you, lied about you, etc.   Whatever it is.....the light’s out!  You can't see anything; you feel like you’re tripping all over the place;  you feel alone, cut off, distant, and that nobody knows you’re missing  - then BAM....someone comes along with encouragement.  They aren't in the dark (for this season) so they bring the light that allows you to be able to walk out of the darkness in their light until you can see again.  

So, if you are in the dark because of life circumstances as you read this please know this is an ok time to say to a friend......."Can you share a light?"

Love you all,


p.s.  Tomorrow  I will be having lunch with a contact person for our Burkina Faso trip in September.  Please pray for that meeting and that God will give me clarity on several issues.