Always There

Photo by Jennifer Burr

Photo by Jennifer Burr

“From heaven the Lord looks down and sees all mankind;

from His dwelling place he watches all who live on earth–

he who forms the hearts of all,

who considers everything they do.

 * * * * *

No king is saved by the size of his army;

no warrior escapes by his great strength.

A horse is a vain hope for deliverance;

despite all its great strength it cannot save.

* * * * *

But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him,

on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,

to deliver them from death,

and keep them alive in famine.

* * * * *

We wait in hope for the Lord;

he is our help and our shield.

In him our hearts rejoice,

for we trust in his holy name.

May your unfailing love rest upon us,

O Lord, even as we put our trust in you.”

Psalm 22:12-22

Lord God, so often I misplace my trust when I run into trouble.   Instead of falling on my knees and bringing to you my concerns I try “this and that”, I consult experts, I go to my friends, to books, to talk radio, to the internet.  Lord, forgive me for not coming to you first!  Lord, you know my human frailty and in your mercy you don’t turn away from me when I finally come to you.  You generously give your wisdom, your strength, your patience and perseverance to me.  And I am helped.  Thank you Lord God for your faithfulness and grace.  Always.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.


A Cool Reminder

Photo by Jenny Ellison

Photo by Jenny Ellison

“A man’s wisdom gives him patience;

it is to his glory to overlook an offense.”

Proverbs 19:11

* * * * *

Keeping a cool head

in the heat of conflict

Turning the other cheek

when wronged

Lord, grant me such

wisdom today

to weigh my words

before I speak

to love

even as I am loved

by You.

February 21 Patience’s Work

Photo by Laura Jostes

Photo by Laura Jostes

“Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him.”

Psalm 37:7

Have you prayed and prayed and waited and waited, and still there is no manifestation?

Are you tired of seeing nothing move?  Are you just at the point of giving it all up? Perhaps you have not waited in the right way?  This would take you out of the right place–the place where He can meet you.

“With patience wait” (Romans 8:25).  Patience takes away worry.  He said He would come, and His promise is equal to His presence.  Patience takes away your weeping.  Why feel sad and despondent?  He knows your needs better than you do, and His purpose in waiting is to bring more glory out of it.  Patience takes away self-works.  The work He desires is that you “believe” (John 6:29), and when you believe, you may know that all is well.  Patience takes away all want.  Your desire for the thing you wish is perhaps stronger than your desire for the will of God to be fulfilled in its arrival.

Patience takes away all weakening.  Instead of having the delaying time, a time of letting go, know that God is getting a larger supply ready and must get you ready too.  Patience takes away all wobbling. “make me stand upon my standing” (Daniel 8:18, margin).  God’s foundations are steady; and when His patience is within, we are steady while we wait.  Patience gives worship.  A praiseful patience sometimes “longsuffering with joyfulness” (Colossians 1:11) is the best part of it all.  “Let [all these phases of] patience have her perfect work” (James 1:4), while you wait, and you will find great enrichment. C.H.P.

Hold steady when the fires burn,

When inner lessons come to learn,

And from this path there seems no turn–

“Let patience have her perfect work.”

~ L.S.P.

From Streams In The Desert, compiled by Mrs. Charles E. Cowman

December 9 Written For You

Image by Mark Stuckey

Image by Mark Stuckey

Joel 1:1-3:21; Revelation 1:1-20;  Psalm 128:1-6;  Proverbs 29:18

“John, to the seven churches that are in Asia:

Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead and the ruler of the kings of the earth.

To him

who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever.  Amen.


he is coming with the clouds and every eye will see him,

even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth

will wail on account of him.  Even so.  Amen.

“I am

the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God,

“who is and who was and who is to come,

the Almighty.”

Revelation 1:4-8


Written for us

living in times ending,

observing the season of


a time of reflection,

of repentance

of humble adoration

of the One who is, who was, and who

is to come

to deliver us from a world,

though wonderful and bright,

pales in comparison to the

glorious kingdom of Heaven

lit up by the very presence

of God!

Come, Lord Jesus, Come!

Lord God most Holy, I await for your return.  Please give me patience and faith to do so!  During this season of Advent please search my heart and bring to light all that is impure and unholy.  On bended knee please hear my prayer and forgive my sins, for Jesus’ sake.   May I be still and really hear your message of redeeming love for all the world.  Amen.

November 14 Patience

Photo By Laura Jostes

Photo By Laura Jostes

Dear Friends,

Please pray that I can get computer issues resolved soon!  I’ve been journaling–on paper–my thoughts on the daily readings from the One year Bible.  God’s Word is always there to feed us, even when computers fail us!  “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways (even with computers) acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight.”  Proverbs 3:5-6

Weekend Blessings!


August 20 True Love

Photo by Laura Jostes

Photo by Laura Jostes

Esther 8:1-10:3;  1 Corinthians 12:27-13:13;  Psalm 1-11;  Proverbs 21:23-24

“Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.   Love never fails.”

1 Corinthians 13:4-8

Lord God, you are love.  Thank you for being patient with us and kind.  Thank you for not lording over us the fact that you ARE Lord of Lord and King of Kings!  Thank you for your never-ending mercy, for forgetting our sins as soon as they are forgiven.  Thank you for your faithful protection, for never betraying our trust, for giving us hope, for never giving up on us.  That you for your forever presence in our life through faith.  Thank you for Jesus who walked the way of true love–all the way to the Cross.  In His name we pray, Amen.

February 18 Chill


Photo by Laura Jostes

Leviticus 6:1-7:27;  Mark 3:7-30;  Psalm 37:1-11;  Proverbs 10:3-4

“Fret not yourselves because of evildoers;

be not envious of wrongdoers!

For they will soon fade like the grass

and wither like the green herb.

Trust in the Lord, and do good;

dwell in the land and befriend


Delight yourself in the Lord,

and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Commit your way to the Lord;

trust in him, and he will act.

He will bring forth your righteousness as the


and your justice as the noonday.

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him;

fret not yourself over the one who prospers

in his way,

over the man who carries out evil devices!

Psalm 37:1-7

Lord God, help me to keep a cool head, yet a warm heart as I walk through this life.  There will always be evil, always injustice, unfairness and inequity.  Give me peace and understanding and the willingness to do good–even to my enemies.  May I trust in your unfailing love to guard and protect me.  In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

January 28 Surely


Image by Kevin Carden

Exodus 5:22-7:24;  Matthew 18:23-19:12;  Psalm 23:1-6;  Proverbs 5:22-23

“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.

He makes me lie down in green pastures,

he leads me beside quiet waters,

he restores my soul.

He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death

I will fear no evil, for you are with me;

your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence

of my enemies.

You anoint my head with oil,

my cup overflows.


goodness and mercy will follow me

all the days of my life,

and I will dwell in the house of the Lord


Psalm 23: 1-6


He who calls me by my name and writes my name in the Book of Life–


He who walks beside me on life’s path–


He who provides me with daily bread–


He who tends to my bruised and damaged soul–


He who defends me to the end–

Will open the door to Heaven and let His sheep come in.

Lord God, thank you for being my Shepherd; for your love and mercy that follows on my heels; for giving more than I could ever imagine: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness and self-control all wrapped up in your Son Jesus Christ.  Thank you for never leaving me during the dark times, when shadows obscure my path.  I have felt your rod and staff nudging me–through Word and Sacrament–to stay near to you, to keep following your lead until I reach your home in Heaven.  In my Shepherd’s name I pray, Amen


October 4 Answered Prayer


Photo by Marian Trinidad

Jeremiah 2:31-4:18;  Colossians 1:1-20;  Psalm 76:1-12;  Proverbs 24:21-22

“…we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding.  And we pray this in order that you might live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way;  bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of  God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.  For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”  Colossians 1:9-14


Laying to rest a loved one,

loved by us,

loved more by God

speaks the Amen

to Paul’s prayer

from prison

so long ago.

Prayer for faith,

for strength,

for endurance.

Prayer to be fruitful in

good works.

Prayer of thanksgiving,

of joy,

for a life redeemed.

Rest in peace,

dear one.

Amen and Amen!


Lord God Heavenly Father, thank you for the prayer Paul prayed, parents prayed, teachers prayed, pastors prayed, friends prayed, a husband prayed through the years.  Thank you for a life lived shining bright with kind words, a ready smile and encouragement for all.  For work done well and in Your name.  For a heart that beat big enough to embrace and nurture all who came near.  Above all, thank you for your grace that made all this possible.  To you we give all thanks and praise, Amen!

July 23 Soul Source


Photo by Kelly Sikkema

2 Chronicles 8:11-10:19; Romans 8:9-21;  Psalm 18:16-36;  Proverbs 19:26

“You O Lord, keep my lamp burning, my God turns my darkness into light. With your help I can advance against a troop;  with my God I can scale a wall.”  Psalm 18:28-29

With my God I can be patient with a co-worker…

   teach my teenager…

       serve the homeless…

           forgive the one who hurt me…

               speak kindly to my spouse…

                     give of my time, talent, and treasure…

“As for God, his way is perfect, the word of the Lord is flawless.  He is a shield for all who take refuge in him.  For who is God besides the Lord?  And who is the Rock except our God?  It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect.”  Psalm 18:30-32

It is God who gives me patience…

    enables me to forgive…

       opens my heart to generosity…

           fills me with compassion and moves me to serve those in need.

“He makes my feet like the feet of a deer;  he enables me to stand on the heights.”  Psalm 18:33

He prepares me for the work He wants me to do…

    He gives me lips to speak His word…

       gives me eyes to see the needs of those around me…

            equips me with skills and abilities…

               gives me motivation and determination…

                    equips me for every good work.

Lord God Heavenly Father, you are the source of all that is truly good and perfect.  You give us light that never ends.  You equip us with all that we need to serve you and do good in this world.  Thank you!!  Forgive us when we fail to look to you as our soul/sole provider;  when we seek our own way and not yours;  when we take credit for our successes rather than humbly acknowledging your goodness and grace in our lives.  May we look to you today–our Rock–our God–our Source and give you our thanks and praise.  In Jesus’ name, we pray, Amen.