All posts by laura

The secret to ending the confusion in and around us <3

On my Monday post here : I shared about a conviction I felt on Sunday morning about my prayer life. Conviction leads to repentance and repentance leads to turning around and heading in a new direction. 

So yesterday when my “witching’ hour hit…3:30 PM is when my thoughts start to spiral towards the dark side of fear, doubt, anxiety and negative self talk…which is an interesting converse to  3:30 AM and the way the Holy Spirit likes to awaken me at that time to pray…but that is for another day’s post…instead of heading to the pantry for food therapy, I headed to my room and opened a little prayer book I keep by my bed and I prayed my worries and fears. 

In the Scripture prayers offered, this one jumped out at me and I will share from one of my go to translations, The Message:

“Whenever you’re trying to look better than others or get the better of others, things fall apart and everyone ends up at the other’s throats.”

James 3:16 The Message

Have mercy.

Does that shout into our culture right now? 

Let me share another source for the same verse:

For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. NKJV

As I look across the landscape of our social interactions these days, I see a lot of confusion and a lot of evil. James takes it back to not a “those people” problem, but a “me” problem. 

When I am envious and when I am seeking my own rights, my own will, my own way, I am opening the door of confusion. I can’t fix society. There are many people on all sides of the spectrum that feel like they are being treated unfairly. There is much comparison offered through social media and people are spoiling for fights. 

I have seen arguments started and carried on over the most ridiculous of minutia. Offenses are thrown and taken up on the simplest of things. There are those who seem to have an agenda, and so we can become jaded against any comment or post made. 

“Experts” abound and people who couldn’t even pass a U.S. Government 101 test are airing opinions as if they could run the country with one hand tied behind the back. And I count myself in this.

I will admit. I couldn’t have told you who was on the Supreme Court if my life depended on it and the only name I now know is gone. And truth be told, I can only remember her first and last name whilst struggling to remember the middle one.

Yet, I will enter into some kind of discussion of current events acting like I know it all. 

This is not good. 

This is not righteous. 

No wonder confusion abounds within me and around me. 

God bless James, though. He doesn’t leave us hanging here in our mess. He offers a solution:

Real wisdom, God’s wisdom, begins with a holy life and is characterized by getting along with others. It is gentle and reasonable, overflowing with mercy and blessings, not hot one day and cold the next, not two-faced. You can develop a healthy, robust community that lives right with God and enjoy its results only if you do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honor.

James 17-18 The Message

Friends, I think we are going to camp here for a couple of days if you don’t mind. I think we have some things to look at in this passage. I hope you will read it in a variety of translations and mediate on it with me and pray. Pray for God to show us His wisdom. 

It sounds a lot more appealing than the noise and confusion going on out there <3 

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Starting up the week and it’s looking good so far <3

Monday has arrived. And yes, the calendar page above is from yesterday, but so good I had to share.

The sunny skies and crisp weather are what make autumn one of my favorite seasons. I feel energized which means the laundry is humming and I have meal plans set for the week. Days like these are the ones I wish I had more often. Sigh.

I have big plans to arrive at the end of this day feeling like I completed some things so here are a few ideas to start us off for the week.

Church on Sunday filled my heart to overflowing. The teaching rested on forgiveness and our movie of the week was the recent visit to the biographical drama about Mr. Rogers, “It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”.

I simply cannot say enough good things about both the movie and the shared insights from Pastor Brian. Best quote was hands down,

“Do you know what forgiveness is? It’s a decision we make to release a person from the feeling of anger we have toward them.”

– Fred Rogers

I can’t even read that without the tight places of past hurts opening up. I feel the healing of release of hardness in my heart start to melt the rocky places. And in that softer place I meet Jesus’ love and mercy and compassion – for me and for the ones who wounded me. It was invaluable to me yesterday and continues today. 

Isn’t that what He did for me? Made a decision to release me from His well-deserved wrath for my betrayal of Him?

This series can only be caught as a live broadcast. It is not like our regular sermons that are archived on the church website. But don’t be glum if you missed it! There is another opportunity to catch this one on Wednesday evening at 7 PM CST right here:

The teaching was just part of a wonderful service which opened with a song that is new to me. You can listen here:     although I don’t think anyone will every capture the purity of worship through music like our praise team did on Sunday. 

The lyrics got me in a way of deep conviction. The opening line is

“There is a sound I love to hear. It’s the sound of my Savior’s robe when He walks into the room where people pray. Where He hears praises He hears faith.”

Brook Ligertwood, Awake My Soul

Lyrically and musically the entire song was indescribably beautiful. Standing alone, it is a powerful song of worship. But it was anointed and brought conviction to my heart and soul and spirit. Because I believe the words with all my heart. I have experienced what is described. But I have been in a desert for prayer for far too long. 

Oh I have prayed and I have believed and I have wrestled, but it has been a long while since I heard what is described. And I have heard it. Believe me. It is a sound I too love very much. And I knew I was missing something but couldn’t identify it until this song ministered to me.

Something broke yesterday, and this time it wasn’t me. It was whatever has clogged my ears to hear the rustle of His robes. He has been present all along, but with all the noise it was hard to hear the hem that brings healing to whoever touches it. 

I think we will stop here. That’s enough for me and for you to ponder. Be blessed as you start your week. Prayers we all hear the swish of the robe today and the aroma of Christ fills your prayer time and your going forth time until you lay your sweet head down to rest again tonight and then I pray you hear His song over you <3

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Christmas in September (why not? It’s 2020)

This week I finished the Old Testament and began the New. As I sat on the patio on a crisp fallish morning, I read what is basically the Christmas story we all know and love. The words washed over me in a fresh way. 

Immanuel. God with us. 

It wasn’t so long ago I was in Isaiah where He was promised to be our:

Wonderful Counselor

Mighty God. 

Everlasting Father

Prince of Peace 

How we need that in our world. 

We always have, but lately we are noticing it in painfully obvious ways. 

I read about Joseph taking directions from dreams and angel visitations. A carpenter by trade and not a wealthy man, suddenly he was following leads from night visions that took him to a marriage that would look suspect to the eyes of his family and friends. He would travel with his uber pregnant wife to a census taking that he probably would have liked to have taken a pass on. From there they fled to Egypt, which of all places, God had reminded His people regularly to not go to Egypt for help and yet there they were. And then another voice in the night led them back to a new town to set up shop and raise a family. 

None of it was easy or normal. 

All kinds of new normals and recalculations made. 

God understands what we are going through. 

He is not far off, but very near. 

In fact, He has made His dwelling among us. 


Immanuel….God WITH us. 

I pray you are holding fast to the Hope of Christ IN YOU during this season. 

You are deeply and dearly loved. 

Forever and ever. 

Amen <3

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