Thursday, September 30, 2010


My dearest Child,

I was just thinking about you!
And had a few things I wanted to tell you...

I am your Shepherd.
I will feed you, and hold you close to My heart.
I will carry you in My arms.

I see your troubles.

But, have you not heard?
Have you never understood?
I am the Everlasting Father, the Creator of all the Earth.
I never grow weak.
I never grow weary.

No one can measure the depths of my understanding!

I give power to the weak.
Trust in Me, and you will find new strength.
You will soar high on wings like eagles.
You will run and not grow weary.
You will walk and not faint.

I have called you, saying - "You are My servant."
I will not throw you away!

Don't be afraid, I am with you!
Don't be discouraged, for I am your God!
I will strengthen you.
I will help you.
I will uphold you with My victorious right hand.

Those who attack you will come to nothing.

For I am holding your hand - I, the LORD your God!
And I am saying to you, "Don't be afraid!"

I am here to help you.
I will pay attention to your prayers.
I will never withdraw My unfailing love.

Your life is in My hands.
I will bring you to a place of great abundance.
I will flood your heart with light.
I will give you confident hope.

I am far above any ruler or authority or power or leader or anything else.

My Word stands forever!

I am coming!

You will say, "Who has done such mighty deeds?"
It is I, the LORD, the First and the Last...
I alone am He!

Even before I made the world I chose you...

And I love you!

Forever yours...the One who was, and is, and is to come,


(Taken from Isaiah 40 & 41, Psalm 66, and Ephesians 1)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Last week, a blog friend asked me to share something from the Women of Faith Conference I attended earlier this month.

I already entertained you with the story of "my fall" - ("I've Fallen - But I Will Get Up" dated Monday, September 20th - in case you want to go over there and get a chuckle or two - it's OK, I laugh at it now, too!)

The second speaker on Friday morning was Marcus Buckingham. Marcus has several books out (check him out on Amazon - I've got a gadget over there on the sidebar!). Marcus spent nearly two decades as a senior researcher at the Gallup Organization. He is THE consultant for people and companies who want to leverage their strengths.

He was an awesome speaker. He was witty, informative, and challenging...and a wonderful Christian man.

He started his "talk" with a very interesting question -

How do you understand God's will?

Then he posed a second, related question -

Which do you think will make your life better?

Building on your strengths or fixing your weaknesses?

Hmmm...interesting, huh?!

Marcus proceeded to share with us (an arena of about 9,000 women) several polls responding to that second question.

In country after country, across the board, male and female, young and old - it seems that people thought their lives would be better if they could fix their weaknesses!

Then Marcus asked this - WHY aren't we playing to our strengths?!

He used this verse from Scripture to illustrate his point: "God arms me with strength, and he makes my way perfect." (Psalm 18:32)

Ponder this, he challenged...What's YOUR perfect way?

We are each born with strengths, desires, talents, and abilities that are UNIQUE!

It is God's WILL that we use our uniqueness, our strengths, to honor and serve Him.

Why don't we?

Marcus pointed out that we tend to take our strengths for granted. We also tend to fear our weaknesses more than we honor our strengths. And somehow, uniquely for the Christian, we somehow don't think it's RIGHT to "play to our strengths."

WHY do we believe that?

Scripture makes a different perspective clear in 1 Corinthians 12:

"A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other...It is the one and only Spirit who distributes all these gifts. He alone decides which gift each person should have."

The problem comes when we think these strengths, these abilities, these talents and gifts, are of OUR OWN DOING.

That's when PRIDE rears its ugly head!

And we all know, PRIDE is the big “no-no” sin – it was the reason for Satan’s rebellion, it was the reason for humanity’s “FALL.”

But is it just possible that the “enemy” is perpetuating another subtle lie?

Does he not want to render us weak, defeated, discouraged…ineffective?

So, what does God’s Word have to say about it?

“As for me, may I never boast about anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Galatians 6:14)

“As the Scriptures say, ‘If you want to boast, boast only about the LORD.”
(2 Corinthians 10:17)

AMEN to that…

So, what’s a proper way to look at our strengths, abilities, talents, and gifts?

1) They are gifts from God
2) They should be developed and used, not hidden
3) They should be surrendered to the Lord, to be used for His purposes
4) We must have the attitude of servants
5) We should not be proud – but neither should we deny the power of the
Holy Spirit to work THROUGH us
6) Satan is actively working to keep our spiritual strengths ineffective
7) God wants us to take ourselves seriously and to play to the strengths
HE has given us

God made YOU uniquely YOU…and He has a purpose, and a mission, just for YOU!

Be strong in His power – “…for the joy of the LORD is your strength!” (Nehemiah 8:10)

Do you play to your weaknesses or strengths?

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


It’s Marty time again…!!

When my youngest son was thinking about buying a dog, he did a lot of research. That’s just his way. He doesn’t do much without weighing all the pro’s and con’s – googling information like the “internet ferret” that he is – and then making a decision that comes from his “head”based on an intelligent evaluation of the facts.

So, he had decided that he was going to get a beagle. (The research had supported this decision). He had even found a “no-kill” animal sanctuary that specialized in beagles. Now, well-thought-out decision made, it was just a matter of timing.

Except once in a while, his heart takes over.

Yup, we wandered into a pet store “just for fun” – and there was Marty.

Oh no…

We had vowed we would “never” get a dog from a pet store. We’d heard too many horror stories about “puppy mills” and disease and a host of other reasons why this would NOT be a good decision

But…there was Marty.

We petted him…we let him lick us…we took him to the “play area”…we took him for a short walk. (Not a good ideafeelings were starting to bubble up…)

My son and I went outside to “discuss” our options. We finally decided to put a down payment on “Brown-Headed Beagle, Male, 4 months old” – a NON-REFUNDABLE down payment, of course.

And that’s when they let us look at his records…


Born in Texas, somehow transported to California when he wasn’t quite two months old. Two days later, in the hospital with parvo (a terrible dog disease that is usually fatal) – on an IV and medicine for 10 days – back to the pet store – where two weeks later, he promptly got an intestinal parasite – more medicine, and into quarantine. When we saw him that day, he had just been returned to his regular cage.

My heart sank…

We didn’t want to buy a sickly dog. I saw $$$ piling up in exorbitant vet fees. My son looked at me, I looked at him – I said, “Well, that down payment gives us 24 hours to decide.”

We went over to see Marty (who wasn’t Marty yet, if you know what I mean - but he was, if you know what I mean!). As soon as we got there, the other puppy in the cage went after him, biting him (NOT puppy “bites”not “nice” - not "playful") – Marty started yelping – he was getting hurt!

Well, I swept down faster than an avenging eagle rescuing her baby from the jaws of a predator.

Marty was in my arms faster than you can say “boo.” A lady said to me, “Oh, that poor little thing!” I looked at her and said, “Well, it won’t happen anymore. This is our dog!”

And just that quickly, the decision was made.

Marty came home with us.

Unfortunately, he still had some health problems, and we had more doctor visits, and medicine, and $$$. We had 10 days to decide “officially” if we were going to keep him. It was a lot for my son to handle.

So one day I asked him, “What was the FIRST thing you thought to yourself this morning when you got up?”

Without a moment’s hesitation, he said, “Keep him...because I love him.”

The rest is history.

Marty is a healthy, happy, delightful, funny, precious member of our family.

What did this rather inauspicious beginning with Marty teach me about God?

God came to our world. He looked at us, imprisoned in a cage of sin – dirty, sick, infected with unrighteousness – for all intents and purposes,
a “throw-away.”

There wasn’t anything in our records that made us worth “purchasing.”

He could have walked away…

But instead, God listened to His heart, which was moved with compassion and love, and He reached out, and snatched us away from death – He saved us.

God looked past ALL the reasons that we weren’t worth “buying” – He let His heart speak…

…and took us home!


“When we were utterly helplessGod showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.” (Romans 5:6, 8)

BLOG = “Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Monday, September 27, 2010


What’s your favorite season?

I love summer.

(OK – why am I mentioning summer at the end of September? Because we are currently in the middle of a HEAT WAVEgo figure!)

I love hot weather…Hot, HUMID weather I’m not so fond of – but hot weather, it’s good.

One reason I love summer is because I really don’t like shoes!

I wear sandals all the time – been known to do it in cold weather, been known to do it in rainy weather! WHY, you might ask? (You’re asking…I can hear you). It’s because my favorite shoes are actually BARE FEET!

I also love summer because I get to be outside a lot. And I really like sunshine. I’m afraid I just couldn’t live in a place where it rained or snowed a lot. I get like a grumpy old bear in that kind of weather – “Woe is me. Where’s my hibernation den?”

Summer reminds me of being a kid…when summer meant NO SCHOOL! No homework, no papers or reports, no tests, no deadlines…no rules! It was summertime, and it was MY time!

So for me, summer represents feelings of freedom, fun, imagination, and joy.

If you stop and think about which season you like, you’ll probably find a million reasons why it’s that time of year that means something to you. Sometimes we’re connected to a particular season because of memories – or because of the feelings that season evokes in us.

Our lives go through seasons, too.

Ecclesiastes 3 begins with this often-quoted verse:

“For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.”

We talk about life “seasons” that way. We experience “seasons” of bounty and blessing. We have “seasons” of sadness and suffering. Our moods, and our health, our finances, and our relationships – they change, they shift, they move through “seasons.”

What does God want us to learn during these different seasons?

The secret to peace with God is to discover, accept, and appreciate His perfect timing. We can only see through eyes that exist in bodies that are subject to space and time. We cannot see into the future or comprehend everything.

So we must TRUST God now.

Ecclesiastes 3:11: “…God had made everything beautiful for its own timepeople cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.”

Ecclesiastes 11:5: “Just as you cannot understand the path of the wind…so you cannot understand the activity of God, who does all things.”

So, in the passing “seasons” of life, what remains constant?

God has a plan, a purpose for all people.

And what is that purpose?

It is that we should fear our All-Powerful God. We must respect and stand in awe of Him because of Who He Is. We ought to praise Him for His glory, bow down in adoration, and thank Him for His love.

Purpose in life starts with WHO we know – not WHAT we know.

We must look at life through His heavenly perspective. Of course we don’t have all the answers…but we have HIM!

Heavenly perspective is making Him “Number One” in your heart, and in your life. It’s trusting that God’s purposes are good, even when (especially when) things don’t make sense – even when they don’t line up with our natural human desires and feelings.

Heavenly perspective is trusting the All-Knowing Wisdom of God…

…and knowing that though “seasons” in life may come and go – the love of the Lord will stand FOREVER!!

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Sunday, September 26, 2010

BIBLE "PICK 'EMS" - God is Like a Tree


A new "BIBLE PICK 'EMS" update is now posted on my other blog:

(For the complete story about "Bible Pick 'Ems," see my blog entry dated June 29, 2010)

(Scripture references for "Bible Pick 'Ems" will continue to be posted on this blog)


"When in doubt, search God out!"

Saturday, September 25, 2010


Dear friends,

This is just a test post - for some reason, my blog is not updating on other blog rolls!! :(

I'm working on the problem -

If you get this post, please know that I am STILL posting every day!!


(And I'd love it if you read my original "Quaint Words" post listed directly below!! - Thanks!)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"


Welcome to "Quaint Words!”

These posts will contain thoughts, poems, and prayers from old books that I have found at antique stores, flea markets, and garage sales (with an occasional treasure from a bookstore).

I love the rhythm and sound of the older English language, and am blessed by other believers who have gone before me!

(A listing of books and authors, and also dates of individual postings from those books, will be found on my "QUAINT WORDS" page)

"It Is I; Be Not Afraid"

Tossed with rough winds, and faint with fear,
Above the tempest, soft and clear,
What still small accents greet mine ear?

" 'Tis I; be not afraid.

'Tis I, who led they steps aright;
'Tis I, who gave thy blind eyes sight;
'Tis I, thy Lord, thy Life, thy Light:

'Tis I; be not afraid.

These raging winds, this surging sea,
Bear not a breath of wrath to thee;
That storm has all been spent on Me:

'Tis I; be not afraid.

This bitter cup fear not to drink;
I know it well - oh! do not shrink,
I tasted it o'er Kedron's brink:

'Tis I; be not afraid.

Mine eyes are watching by thy bed,
Mine arms are underneath thy head,
My blessing is around thee shed:

'Tis I; be not afraid.

When on the other side thy feet
Shall rest 'mid thousand welcomes sweet,
One well-known voice thy heart shall greet;

'Tis I; be not afraid."

From out the dazzling majesty,
Gently He'll lay His hand on thee,
Whispering: "Beloved, lov'st thou me?
'Twas not in vain I died for thee;

'Tis I; be not afraid."

(From "The Changed Cross" by Henry Altemus, c. 1897)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Friday, September 24, 2010


Welcome to "Fan the Flame" Friday.

This is a weekly post that will be "short and sweet" (kinda like me...)

Just a word and a phrase, a sentence or a question...just a little something to "fan the flame" of your creativity!

Today's word: ponder

What does the word "ponder" mean to you?
What things do you "ponder" in your heart?

"But Mary was keeping within herself all these things, weighing and pondering them in her heart." (Luke 2:19, The Amplified Bible)

Let me know what you think!!

“This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you…For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:6-7)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Thursday, September 23, 2010


“Oh…you’re religious.”

GRRRR…how I hate those words. They grate on my soul like fingers on a chalkboard.

When someone says them to me, I feel like I’ve been patted on the head and shoved out the door. Or worse yet, patted on the head and dismissed, ignored…

Flicked away like a piece of lint.

I find the words belittling and condescending.

I want to scream, “NO! I am not ‘religious!’ I am a follower of a PERSON Jesus Christ! I have a RELATIONSHIP with God Himself! Don’t you get it?!”

The truth of the matter is this – they DON’T get it.

And then, instead of feeling angry, I feel sad.

People who say this to me are so mistaken, so confused, so lost…

Our pastor is beginning a series entitled: “Why Jesus Hates Religionmoving beyond empty ritual…to authentic relationship.”

One of the definitions of the word “religion” in the dictionary is this:

A personal set or institutionalized system of religious attitudes, beliefs, and practices.


Sounds “OK” –

Religion is man’s attempt to understand the infinite – to know the unknowable.

But there ARE problems with that…

Let’s talk about three of them:

1) Religion says: Find YOUR way to God
Jesus says: I am God WITH you

Religion is not Good News – it makes us read the Bible the wrong way. The Bible is not a book about me – telling me how to live. The primary purpose of the Bible is to tell us God’s story! The Bible is not a book telling me what I should do – it is a book that tells what God has DONE.

2) Religion says: Work to make yourself righteous
Jesus says: I give forgiveness and healing

Religious people don’t need Jesus. They have their own rules, their own works to make them seem righteous. But the Bible is very clear that NO ONE is good enough to be righteous on their own.

Romans 3:23 – “For everyone has sinned; we ALL FALL SHORT of God’s glorious standard.”

But this thought continues in verses 24 and 25: “YET GOD, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin.

Jesus said He could do what we could not – forgive sins!

Now, THAT’S Good News!

3) Religion says: We provide the way to God
Jesus says: Religion is no way to God – I AM THE WAY

Religion promises things it can’t deliver – because love is a gift…it can never be earned.

Religion often appeals to us because we want to be in control of our relationship with God. We do “such and such,” and then we expect God to do “this and that.”

But, God is the Author of our salvation, the One who reached out to us – and Jesus is the “language” He chose to speak to a lost and fallen world.

Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. NO ONE can come to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)

Restricting? Exclusive?


It is the most expansive statement in the history of the world. Jesus wants us to live in the FREEDOM of love.

“For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that EVERYONE who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

Does Jesus “hate” religion? Yes…

But oh…how He LOVES us! He gave His all, He gave His life for us…

“Oh…you’re religious.”

“No, I love a PERSON – Jesus Christ – who is the ONLY way to God. He FORGAVE my sins – something I could NEVER do. He provided the way for me to have a RELATIONSHIP with God…forever.”

Would you like to meet Him?

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


On Sunday, the verses from my one-year Bible reading plan were JUST SO GOOD that I decided to make a post out of them!

They are a compilation of verses from Isaiah 30 & 33, and Psalm 63.

In quietness and confidence is your strength.

Blessed are those who wait for the Lord's help.

He will be gracious if you ask for His help.

He will surely respond to the sound of your cries.

For He is a faithful God.

He will be with you to teach you.

Your own ears will hear Him.

Right behind you a Voice will say, "This is the way you should go."

The Lord will make His majestic Voice heard.

He will display the strength of His mighty arm.

The Lord will greatly bless His people.

He will be merciful.

He will be our strong arm each day, and our salvation in times of trouble.

O God, You are my God.

I earnestly search for You.

My soul thirsts for You, in this parched and weary land.

You satisfy me.

I sing for joy in the shadow of Your wings.

You hold me securely.

I cling to You.



Amen, my friends?!


BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Spam blockers on our blogs…

You know, where you have to enter a “word” before you can leave a comment.

Some of us have them, some of us don’t. (I do – don’t know why – seemed like the thing to do).

I don’t know exactly how they workI guess they do.

But have you ever noticed the “words” we have to type in to leave our comments?

They crack me up…

They are SO CLOSE to real words that it seems like they should mean something.

So, I’ve kept a little record of some of them. And just like my “blog terms dictionary” (See my post, “When in Rome” dated July 28, 2010 you don’t have to, but you can, if you want to…) – where was I? Oh yeah, I’ve searched and found definitions to these “words”:


1. drith what Daffy Duck puts on when he’s pretending he’s a woman for Halloween: “Where’th my drith? The one with the pretty ruffleths?”

2. mation – a country where moms rule: “They lived in a mation where everyone cleaned up their rooms, and gave their mothers flowers on Fridays.”

3. drima – when you have a really dramatic Italy: “Wow! That was some drima last night. Nothing comedy about it – Mama mia, drama all the way.”

4. cherate – a price quote from Cher’s plastic surgeon: “Is that the regular price or is that the cherate?”

5. flitylit a verb describing how fireflies fly: “Those little bugs sure do flitylit from one place to another!”

6. touclas – when an exotic bird, like a toucan, exhibits “chic” behavior: “That bird sure has some touclas. Must be from hanging out with the peacocks.”

7. pundow – what stupidly funny remarks are worth on the open market: “Hey George, what’s the pundow? Is it still $1.00 a share?”

8. oritate – really important speaking: “Joe was asked to oritate at the weekly Toastmasters meeting.”

9. comin – short-hand for a lazy person: “The door’s not locked. Comin.”

10. koake – entertainment at the monthly “Poor Speller’s Club”: “Come on Toosday nite four “Koake Night” – we luv too here yore singing!”

11. predietr – something that hunts: “That is one mean predietr, Jethro. He ate all the chickens!"

12. gousive – what to use if your pet bird loses some feathers: “Molly, give me some of that gousive. Goosey Gander’s lost some of his strutting feathers!”

13. butpoa country conjunction/adjective: “Golly, I thought we were hurtin’ for money, butpo Zeke’s got nothin’ ”

14. logived – sacrificial lumber: “We are thankful for what this logived. His sacrifice helped us build this house.”

15. persubog – high speed chase in Louisiana: “Yup, we finally caught him after we mounted a persubog into the bayous.”

16. tuperco – shorthand for a home-sales company: “Yeah, I used to sell for Avon and Tuperco. Now I’m into Amway.”

17. feeskint – a skinflint (cheapskate, tightwad) who refuses to pay his doctor’s bill: “Mr. Cheepo is such a feeskint. He’ll die before he agrees to our charges.”

OK, what’s the point?


Words can convince, persuade, influence, impart, incite, encourage, demean, explain, confuse – the list of verbs goes on and on.

What we say carries meaning.

Especially as representatives of Jesus Christ.

We must say what we mean, and mean what we say.

We must “tame our tongues” and “speak the truth in love.”

We must be HONEST.

We must always represent our Lord in the best possible language.

"The LORD detests lying lips, but he delights in those who tell the truth." (Proverbs 12:22) 

"With Christ as my witness, I speak with utter truthfulness. My conscience and the Holy Spirit confirm it." (Romans 9:1)

"...If you want to enjoy life and see many happy days, keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies." (1 Peter 3:10)

“Then keep your tongues from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies!” (Psalm 34:13)

“…I will watch what I do and not sin in what I say. I will hold my tongue when the ungodly are around me.” (Psalm 39:1)

“Those who control their tongue will have a long life; opening your mouth can ruin everything.” (Proverbs 13:3)

“Watch your tongue and keep your mouth shut, and you will stay out of trouble.” (Proverbs 21:23)

“…no one can tame the tongue. It is restless and evil, full of deadly poison…If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life…” (James 3:8, 13)

Are you speaking His language?

Ask God to give you HIS WORDS – so that your speech is honoring to His name.

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Monday, September 20, 2010


OK, one of life’s funny moments…(funny, ironic – not funny, HA HA)

A week ago Friday, exactly one week after my mom fell, I FELL!

Oh yes, it was a doozy, too.

My sister, her friend, and I were going to the Honda Center in Anaheim (where the Ducks play, for any hockey fans out there) for the Women of Faith two-day conference. We arrived early…8:30 AM…OK, early for me, a known “night owl.”

We parked our car in the lot and joined several thousand women converging on the building (this is no exaggeration – I think attendance was around 9,000 women on Friday).

The “powers that be” came up with a brilliant plan for keeping the traffic under control. They had marked out “lanes” for the cars going into the parking lot using red traffic cones. So, when the parking dictator blew his little whistle, he looked over at the HUGE throng of women waiting to cross the crosswalk, including our little group, and waved us on.

Like a group of milk cows returning to the stables at dusk, we started making our way across the street.

“Hurry up, ladies. C’mon, c’mon. We’ve got cars waiting,” squealed whistle man. (Probably a crossing guard in his regular life – and not one of those nice little people who stands and waves ‘hello’ at the cars driving by…)

So, the three of us are chatting away, and HURRYING, across the street.

It might be important to tell you that I was wearing my cute little pair of Sketchers shoes – you know, the ones that Joe Montana recommends – the ones that are supposed to make your legs work extra-hard, and make your “you-know-what” all perky and toned

Well, one second I’m yakking – “Oh, I KNOW…I had the same feeling about her last movie…What was she thinking?!...”


One second I’m blathering away, the next I’m flat on the ground – glasses scratched, earrings flying off (clip-ons), jeans torn, tote thrown two feet ahead of me – STUNNED!

It was the weirdest feeling – like my brain’s computer froze – like I needed to reboot it after an electrical outage.

All I knew was that I was on the street…and I was HURT!

My sister said, “Oh my gosh, Sharon! Are you all right?”

“I’m not sure.”

“Can you get up?”

“Not yet.”

When they finally got me over to the curb, I took a body inventory:

Face scratched when I hit the street, a couple of tender spots - but no cuts: (good - no stitches)
No broken nose, no broken teeth: (good - no emergency $$$ trip to the dentist)
No dislocated fingers: (good - I don't have to pass out)
One giant “goose-egg” on my shoulder: (good - nothing broken there)
One large scrape on my forearm, and several on the knuckles of one hand: (good - have to come up with a good backstory - rollerblading, skateboarding, rock climbing...)

So far, so good…

Except when I went down, I fell HARD on my left knee. It was scraped, and quite swollen. Oh man, I thought, what am I gonna do?

Then the COOLEST thing happened. A women rushed over to me – a total stranger. She kneeled down next to me, and said, “I would like to pray for you.”

“I’d really like that,” I replied.

And then this kind, precious Christian woman prayed over me – asking God to bless my time at the conference, saying: “Lord, there is something you want this woman to hear, because Satan tried really hard to keep her from attending today. Bless her, let her hear Your words.

When she was done, we all said, “Amen.” And then with a final squeeze to my knee (the unhurt one), she was on her way. I won’t see that woman until I reach heaven, but she was an angel in that moment.

And when the medic (yes, they sent a “MEDIC” to fix me up!) was done patching me up, I started hobbling into the stadium.

One of the people from the Honda Center said, “Try to stay on solid ground today, ma’am.”

I turned to her, and with a huge smile on my face, replied, “You know, I really love the Lord. And there’s no more solid ground to stand on than Him!”

Cut to the chase – I’m OK.

I attended both days of the conference, and God DID speak to me.

You know, many things “interrupt” our schedules, many times our plans get “messed up" - sometimes we just trip on a red traffic cone!

But what I learned (again) is the truth of what I told that young woman –

God is my Rock. He is the SOLID Rock. On Him, I stand.

And though I sometimes fall, He is there to pick me up.

All weekend long He whispered in my heart, “Trust Me.”

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Sunday, September 19, 2010

BIBLE "PICK 'EMS" - Lord Willing!


A new "BIBLE PICK 'EMS" update is now posted on my other blog:

(For the complete story about "Bible Pick 'Ems," see my blog entry dated June 29, 2010)

(Scripture references for "Bible Pick 'Ems" will continue to be posted on this blog)


"When in doubt, search God out!"

Saturday, September 18, 2010


Welcome to "Quaint Words!”

These posts will contain thoughts, poems, and prayers from old books that I have found at antique stores, flea markets, and garage sales (with an occasional treasure from a bookstore).

I love the rhythm and sound of the older English language, and am blessed by other believers who have gone before me!

(A listing of books and authors, and also dates of individual postings from those books, will be found on my "QUAINT WORDS" page)

"This is our life-work, we emptying ourselves of self, and Christ filling in the gaps...Now we cannot do this of ourselves, any more than in the physical world the invalid can perform her own operation. The surgeon must do it. In the spiritual life these operations are almost continual. They are not always done by the Head Surgeon, Jesus Christ. No; He gives the instruments to His apprentices, who do the work rather awkwardly at times, who perhaps make mistakes, but if we are in good disposition the wounds heal and do not fester.

Provided there be room made for Christ, what matter? Disappointments, separations, uncongenial surroundings, seeming injustice, painful remarks, want of consideration, loneliness, and a thousand other things are the instruments that cut away, little by little, this I, in order that Christ may increase. The more Christ increases in us, the less importance we attach to the irksomeness of affairs, the more beauty we find in individuals, and the more loving and kind are we in our interpretation of everything around us.

Let Christ, therefore increase in us.
Let us become attractive through the superabundance of Christ's indwelling.
Let us show the world what a beautiful thing is goodness.
Let us live so gracefully the noble, true, and virtuous life that those with whom we come in contact may be eager to follow after Christ.
Let us decrease that our beautiful Lord may shine forth in us."

(From "Spiritual Pastels" by J.S.E., c. 1918)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Friday, September 17, 2010

"FAN THE FLAME" FRIDAY - Deliverance

Welcome to "Fan the Flame" Friday.

This is a weekly post that will be "short and sweet" (kinda like me...)

Just a word and a phrase, a sentence or a question...just a little something to "fan the flame" of your creativity!

Today's word: deliverance

Have you ever experienced the Lord's "deliverance"?
If you feel like sharing, what did He deliver you (or someone you know) from?

"The LORD says, 'I will give you back what you lost...and you will praise the LORD your God, who does these miracles for you." (Joel 2:25-26)

Let me know what you think!!

“This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave youFor God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:6-7)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Thursday, September 16, 2010


Something a little different - a fictional story for you...

Time: Sometime in the (not so distant?) future

The world has been decimated by a nuclear war – followed by rampant disease and famine. Less than 10% of the world’s population has survived the devastation. Many live underground. Those who live on the surface of the earth exist in an ashy, dirty remnant of a world completely ruined, under a perpetually gray sky.

Setting: A secret laboratory underground

Two scientists, a head researcher and his assistant, are looking through a large, one-way mirror into a manufactured “environment.” This artificial environment is full of artificial trees, and fake grass, pretend wildflowers and computer-generated butterflies. There is a babbling “brook” and overhead is a blue “sky” and white, puffy "clouds." In the middle of this scene is one small, little girl – who is running, and spinning, and laughing, and singing.

The head researcher turns to his assistant and says:

“I wish there was a way to bottle this. We could restore the world…and make a fortune in the process.”

“I know,” replies the assistant.

“What did you say they called it?”

The assistant looks at his notes. “They call it JOH-E.”


“Yes, I believe that’s how they pronounce it.”

The researcher looks at the little girl intently.

“It resembles happiness.”

“Yes, it does,” answers the assistant. “But of course, happiness was destroyed in the blast.”

Indeed,” muses the researcher. “Refresh my memory, we’re not developing this because there isn’t enough to go around?

“Yes,” the assistant says with a sigh. “We’ve only found 20 people in the world who have it, and they’re all under the age of 5.”

“Hmmm…” The researcher is quiet for several moments. “Is that the only reason we’re not manufacturing this JOH-E substance?”

“Actually,” responds the assistant, “there’s one other problem. We don’t know where it comes from.

“Are we sure it isn’t genetic, viral, or bacterial?“

“Yes, we’ve ruled all that out.”

Just then, the little girl drops to her knees, raises her hands to the sky, and squeals, “I LOVE YOU!”

Several moments of silence pass.

“Fascinating!” exclaims the head researcher.

“Yes,” says the assistant sadly. And under his breath, he mumbles, “I wish it was contagious…”


"You love him even though you have never seen Him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible JOY." (1 Peter 1:8)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Yes, my friends, God not only THINKS about us – HE LOVES US!

Let these wonderful words from the book of Psalms wash over you:

“The LORD is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love…He does not punish us for our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve. For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as GREAT AS THE HEIGHT OF THE HEAVENS ABOVE EARTH…For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust…the love of the LORD remains FOREVER with those who love him.”

Yes, looking at the stars in the desert sky gives me new insights about God. The work of His creation in the heavens is awe-inspiring, and it can make us feel insignificant.

However, the same God who paints the sky with stars, is also the One who came to die for us!

He gave His life for us – just because He LOVES us.

And you know what the best news is?

This love is ours FOREVER!

NO power in the sky above or in the earth below – indeed, NOTHING in all creation will EVER be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord!” (Romans 8:39)

I’d like to share a poem I wrote one night long ago, sitting at a campfire, staring into the beautiful heavens of God.


A night full of stars
a million lights
in a sky as dark as ink…
I gaze at them
and feel blessed
by their presence,
yet insignificant –
How can I matter?
I am so small,
my life so fleeting
compared to them,
so very far away…
Somehow though
I feel part of
the great and beautiful sky,
another star
that shines –
For some reason
I feel
they look back at me
and smile –
That somehow
they know
my eyes see,
my heart understands,
that my soul
is connected
to their meaning –
That their Creator
is mine!

© Sharon Kirby
September 27, 2003

I will never look at the stars without thinking about God’s love, His FOREVER love.

And my hope for you today is this – that you will ALWAYS know His deep love within your own heart, and that you will draw closer to the majestic God of the heavens, the Master of the skies, the One who knows the stars by name…

…the “Living One who sees YOU” – and knows YOUR name.

BLOG = “Blessedly Leaning On God!”

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


“The Hub” and I love to go camping in the desert.

And one of my favorite things to do is sit by the campfire and look at the sky.

It’s fun to scan the sky at dusk, and try to find the first few stars that appear. Before you know it, the sky is FILLED with them – they are EVERYWHERE! You can even see the Milky Way – it looks like a wispy cloud that stretches from horizon to horizon.

When I was a little girl, one of my favorite things to study and learn about was astronomy – it still is!

One of the amazing facts I learned about stars is this – the distances are mind-boggling!

Ready for our lesson? (Don’t worry – there won’t be a pop quiz!)

Besides the Sun, the nearest star to Earth is called Alpha Centauri. It lies 4.21 light years away from earth. That means if something could travel at the speed of light, which is 186,000 miles EVERY SECOND, it would take 4.21 years to reach this closest star.

Think of it this way – the spacecraft that holds the record for the fastest ever space travel would take a STAGGERING 19,000 years to reach this star!

So, needless to say, sitting under that beautiful canopy of stars in the desert is an absolutely spectacular, awe-inspiring experience.

And quite humbling, I might add.

I am reminded of these verses:

“When I look at the night sky and see the work of your fingers – the moon and the stars you set in place – what are people that you should think about them, mere mortals that you should care for them?” (Psalm 8:3, 4)

You know, it’s true.

Staring at the infinite majesty of the skies, it is easy to think that we are nothing to an Almighty God.

In fact, Psalm 147:4 makes this amazing statement: “[God] counts the stars and knows them by name.”

In light of His awesome power, we seem so small and insignificant.

We seem like nothing more than “specks of matter.”

And yet, our God DOES indeed think of us… more often than we can even know.

Listen to the words of Psalm 139:17, 18: “How precious are your thoughts about ME, O God. They CANNOT BE NUMBERED! I can’t even count them

Our God, the One who knows the stars by name, also knows my name, and YOUR name, each one of you.

And He thinks about us all the time.

We are “specks of matter”…that matter!

(Join me tomorrow for Part Two!)

BLOG = “Blessedly Leaning On God!”

Monday, September 13, 2010


Ahhhhh…I can breathe again.

I made it through the long, hot summer…

I made it to September…


Yes, you read that right – I am a football fanatic!!

High school football, college football, professional football – it’s all good (although I must admit, I didn’t succumb to arena football – I have my standards, after all!)

My favorite NFL team?

Don’t really have one – though I am kinda partial to the “Old Man”
Brett Favre.

My favorite college team?

UCLA Bruins, hands down…(I know - it's going to be a LONG season)

I love sports in general – but there’s just something about football that gets my blood going.

Do I understand the game, you ask?

Well, yes, as a matter of fact, I do – I’m no John Madden, but I can appreciate a well-executed screen pass with the best of them.

Part of what I love about football is the intensity.

Getting suited up, the coach’s pep talk, running out onto the field – everyone’s got their “game face” on.

And the crowd goes wild…

They have come here to witness two teams play their hearts out – and they “cheer” or “boo” every move.

It’s the same way with Christians…

We are being observed, too. Every move we make. The good plays and the bad plays. The 80-yard touchdown pass – the interceptions and the fumbles.

The crowds are watching…

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up.” (Hebrews 12:1)

How do we do that?

By keeping our eye on the “quarterback.”

“We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.” (Hebrews 12:2)

More and more, the world is looking at Christians – seeing how we behave, listening to what we do or do not say, assessing what decisions we make, critiquing how we live our lives…

We are being evaluated.

How are we going to “play the game”?

My friends, we’re suited up (“Put on all of God’s armor…” – Ephesians 6:11) – we’ve listened to the coach’s pep talk (“Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong.” – 1 Corinthians 16:13) – and we know the playbook (“I have hidden your word in my heart…” – Psalm 119:11).

It’s time to run onto the field…it’s time to play our hearts out.

Do you have your “game face” on?

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Sunday, September 12, 2010

BIBLE "PICK 'EMS" - Seek God, the Almighty!


A new "BIBLE PICK 'EMS" update is now posted on my other blog:

(For the complete story about "Bible Pick 'Ems," see my blog entry dated June 29, 2010)

(Scripture references for "Bible Pick 'Ems" will continue to be posted on this blog)


"When in doubt, search God out!"

Saturday, September 11, 2010


Welcome to "Quaint Words!”

These posts will contain thoughts, poems, and prayers from old books that I have found at antique stores, flea markets, and garage sales (with an occasional treasure from a bookstore).

I love the rhythm and sound of the older English language, and am blessed by other believers who have gone before me!

(A listing of books and authors, and also dates of individual postings from those books, will be found on my "QUAINT WORDS" page)

(The following is based on a devotion for Matthew 16:21-28):

"No man, [Jesus] says, can attain the high, enduring life of the age to come without being ready, if need be, to sacrifice his present physical life. The essence of life in the age to come is friendship. The essence of friendship is the readiness to take account of another's interests as of one's own - to deny one's self, that is, to deny to one's self the right to the supreme place in thought and plan. To do this in the situation which Jesus and His disciples confronted might result in physical death.

"Lord, it belongs not to my care
Whether I die or live;
To love and serve Thee is my share,
And this Thy grace must give.

Christ leads me through no darker rooms
Than He went through before;
He that unto God's kingdom comes,
Must enter by this door.

My knowledge of that life is small;
The eye of faith is dim;
But it's enough that Christ knows all,
And I shall be with Him."

-- Richard Baxter

(From "Christ in Everyday Life" by Edward Increase Bosworth, c. 1910)

P.S. Let's all remember those brave men and women who gave up their lives on this day in 2001. And let's offer up many prayers for their families and loved ones.

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Friday, September 10, 2010


Welcome to "Fan the Flame" Friday.

This is a weekly post that will be "short and sweet" (kinda like me...)

Just a word and a phrase, a sentence or a question...just a little something to "fan the flame" of your creativity!

Today's word: success

What does the word "success" mean to you?
Do you think the world views Jesus as a "success"?

Let me know what you think!!

“This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you…For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:6-7)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Thursday, September 9, 2010


I’ve been cleaning like a madwoman the last few days.

I’m having my writer’s group over today…and “The Hub” insisted that everything be “military” clean.

And, to his credit, he spent yesterday afternoon helping me.
(Yup, he’s a “keeper!”)

Most of the work was the ordinary stuff of housecleaning – dusting, scrubbing, scouring, washing, polishing, vacuuming, dusting again (because I think you’re supposed to vacuum first, and then dust…)

But, there was one job I kept putting off – until “The Hub” ever so gently said,

“Sweetie, what about the bottles in the window?”

OK, you need a little background here. I LOVE bottles!

They are one of my collecting “weaknesses.” And so, in the garden window over my sink in the kitchen, I have my collection of bottles. Some are antique reproductions, some are old, some are new and inexpensive – but they’re all different shapes and sizes, all different colors of the rainbow!

And when the light shines on them – my window resembles a stained-glass window from a beautiful old church. I think it’s dazzling!!

But… these bottles have to be cleaned…each one…all 45 of them!!

So, I carefully removed them from the window – paying extra-special attention to the ORDER I have placed them in (it’s important – I have to have all the colors and shapes spread out JUST SO…) – and then I started the rather arduous task of wiping each one down with a damp cloth.

I was surprised at just how dusty and dirty they had become.

But I was even more amazed at how much brighter and more colorful they were when that old dust and dirt came off!!

It reminded me of myself…

How often do I allow myself to become “dusty and dirty” in my walk with the Lord?

Can I fall into the trap of thinking that “all is well” – when in truth, I need to do a little “cleaning?”

It’s all too easy to become complacent in our faith, to walk the same old path with God, to think we’re reflecting Him properly.

But I don’t want to settle for a “dim” reflection!

Those bottles were beautiful before I cleaned them. It wasn’t until I looked at them more closely that their “uncleanness” showed up. It wasn’t until I had washed them, and put them back into the window, that I fully realized how truly “unclean” they had been – how much the dust and dirt had dulled them.

Now, with the sun shining through their gleaming surfaces, I could see the FULL beauty of their colors!

Lord, I don’t want to be dusty and dirty. I don’t want to be a dull reflection of You. I want You to shine through me with all Your glorious colors.

I know that’s going to require cleaning – so, clean me, Lord.

“Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin…and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow…Create in me a clean heart, O God.”
(Psalm 51:3, 7, 10)

“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me…Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.” (Psalm 139:23-24)

Need a little cleaning?

I did…

BLOG = “Blessedly Leaning On God!”

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


I was going to write this post last week, but I put it off until today…

(That’s a joke, friends…HA!)

Seriously, what’s the deal with procrastination? I hope I’m not the only one out there who deals with this problem (don’t worry, you can tell me about it later…)

I looked up the word “procrastination”:

Procrastination refers to the counterproductive deferment of actions or tasks to a later time. Psychologists often cite such behavior as a mechanism for coping with the anxiety associated with starting or completing any task or decision.

OK, that sounds about right…

Why do we do it? There are many reasons – fear of failure, fear of success, perfectionism, because we’re busy, because we’re afraid of criticism – just to name a few.

I was reading an article on the issue – it was quite informative. But one of the reasons listed for procrastination was this – IT WORKS!


The more I thought about it, the more that idea made sense. When I avoid doing a certain activity, my anxiety about that activity is dramatically reduced. It becomes easier to “put it on the back burner” and then fool myself into pretending it’s not there.

But here’s an “ugly truth” about myself – At times, I am also a “spiritual procrastinator.”

How so?

I’ve put off reading my Bible, or spending time in prayer, or talking to that neighbor, or going to that Bible Study, or attending church regularly, or…any number of other things. I’m sure some of you can fill in your own blanks…(you can, can’t you?! I’m not alone with this, am I?!)

As much as I could maybe “justify” my procrastinating habits in the “real world” – I couldn’t avoid facing the truth that when it came to spiritual matters, to my relationship with God, procrastination was really spiritual laziness and lack of discipline.


I came to the realization that procrastination was a clever and effective tool that Satan used:

to keep me from maturing in my faith
to keep me from staying close, and growing closer to God
to keep me from reaching out to others
to keep me mired in a “safety zone” of complacency


This year, with the power of the Holy Spirit prodding me and enabling me, I have added several Christian “disciplines” to my life.

Have I “arrived”? – CERTAINLY NOT!
Have I “grown”? – Oh, you better believe it!!

"Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today" – Thomas Jefferson.

It’s a good quote, and it’s true.

But I’ve got a better one –

“So run to win! All athletes are DISCIPLINED in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should.” (1 Corinthians 9:24-27)

I like how the idea is expanded in these notes:

“As Christians, we are running toward our heavenly reward. The essential disciplines of prayer, Bible Study, and worship equip us to run with vigor and stamina…Train diligentlyyour spiritual progress depends on it.” (From The Life Application Bible, NLT, c. 2004, by Tyndale House Publishers).

We can’t do it in our own power, we can’t do it alone…

We need a “playbook” – God’s Word – and we need a “coach” – the Holy Spirit.

Oh Lord, forgive me for “putting off” so many things that are necessary in my spiritual life – so many things that are vital to my relationship with You. Help me do the things that You call me to do. Give me courage and self-discipline. Help me be a worthy athlete, Lord, ready to run my race – the race You have set before me… TODAY!!

Will you join me…today?!

BLOG = “Blessedly Leaning On God!”

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


The Bad News: My mom fell last Friday.

The Good News: She’s OK.

My mom is in her late 70’s, has a lot of pain in her knees, and an arthritic hip that gives her trouble. She “missed” a curb, and went right down…quick.

I got a call around dinnertime from my oldest son, “Hey Mom, everything’s
all right, but…

NEVER a good way for a phone call to start…

Seems that Mom hit some kind of steel bench on her way down, went to the hospital in an ambulance, had to have 2 cuts stitched up on her chin, and was currently getting x-rays to make sure nothing was broken (nothing was!).

Praise God – my mom is none the worse for wear!

She has a rather large bandage on her chin (the hospital one was small and unassuming – my dad’s replacement one 24 hours later is “battlefield-worthy”!!), a few scrapes and scratches, and a HUGE bruise on her hip – which she is rather proud of, I might add!

So, what’s all this have to do with flowers?!

I think it’s a good practice to “give someone flowers” every chance you get. Maybe not a “literal” bouquet, but something that tells them how you feel about them.

This little “accident” of my mom’s really showed me, yet again, how much I really appreciate her – for all the things she does for me, and for all the things she is to me. So I spent yesterday afternoon with her, brought her a small gift, and a card. And then I just told her how much I loved and appreciated her.

After all, she’s been my best friend my whole life!

When “The Boys” were in elementary school, we used to do a fun thing on Teacher Appreciation Day. We would make 26 tissue-paper flowers and attach them to green pipe cleaners. Then we would make 26 tags with a word describing their teachers’ best qualities and traits, starting with each letter of the alphabet, and then attach one tag to each stem. We’d get an inexpensive vase, fashion a bouquet, and give it to them with a card. It was always a “hit” – (by the way, X usually stood for “X-cellent!”).

We all have people in our lives who deserve to be recognized, appreciated, told how much they’re lovedwe all have people who need to know how we feel about them.

The “gift of flowers” can be ANYTHING – the possibilities are endless!

It can be as simple as a card, an email, a phone call, a cup of coffee, a hug…

The important thing is acknowledging what a particular person means to you, and letting them KNOW how you feel.

Is there someone in your life who deserves a “bouquet?!”

BLOG = “Blessedly Leaning On God!”

Monday, September 6, 2010



I know there is a purpose
That all is for my good,
But in my weary body
I wish I understood.

Oh Lord, I turn to you in faith
I know that You do care,
For though I ache with weariness
I feel You everywhere.

And in a moment of clarity
I hear a still, small voice -
"Take heed, my precious daughter
You have reason to rejoice.

Your burdens they are heavy
I know that this is true,
But come to Me, I'll give you rest
My yoke I give to you.

The burden I give is easy
Restoring to your soul,
And though you suffer in this life
Remember, Heaven is the goal.

Sleep tonight in peace, My child
Awake with strength anew,
For you are wearing the Shepherd's yoke
Made especially for you."

So I will face another day
And listen for His voice,
For Jesus is the reason
That in my heart I can rejoice.

"Come to Me," He says with love
"Let me give you rest,
I know the plans I have for you
And they are for the best."

Oh Lord, I release my weary mind
For You have heard my plea,
I thank You that You're always here
Walking each step with me.

© Sharon Kirby
September 21, 2002

Then Jesus said, "Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light." (Matthew 11:28-30)

Happy Labor Day!

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Sunday, September 5, 2010

BIBLE "PICK 'EMS" - Be Alert!


A new "BIBLE PICK 'EMS" update is now posted on my other blog:

(For the complete story about "Bible Pick 'Ems," see my blog entry dated June 29, 2010)

(Scripture references for "Bible Pick 'Ems" will continue to be posted on this blog)


"When in doubt, search God out!"

Saturday, September 4, 2010


Welcome to "Quaint Words!”

These posts will contain thoughts, poems, and prayers from old books that I have found at antique stores, flea markets, and garage sales (with an occasional treasure from a bookstore).

I love the rhythm and sound of the older English language, and am blessed by other believers who have gone before me!

(A listing of books and authors, and also dates of individual postings from those books, will be found on my "QUAINT WORDS" page)

"Because God is not visibly present to the eye, it is difficult to feel that a transaction with Him is real. I suppose that if, when we made our acts of consecration, we could actually see Him present with us, we should feel it to be a very real thing...Such a transaction would have to us the binding power that a spoken promise to an earthly friend always has to a man of honor. What we need, therefore, is to see that God's presence is a certain fact always, and that every act of our soul is done before Him, and that a word spoken in prayer is as really spoken to Him as if our eyes could see Him and our hands could touch Him. Then we shall cease to have such vague conceptions of our relations with Him, and shall feel the binding force of every word we say in His presence.

I know some will say here, "Ah, yes; but if he would only speak to me...I would have no trouble then in believing it." No, of course you would not; but then where would be the room for faith? Sight is not faith, and hearing is not faith, neither is feeling faith; but believing when we can neither see, hear, nor feel, is faith; and everywhere the Bible tells us our salvation is to be by faith. Therefore we must believe before we feel, and often against our feelings, if we would honor God by our faith."

(From "The Christian's Secret of a Happy Life" by Hannah Whitall Smith, c. 1888)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Friday, September 3, 2010


Welcome to "Fan the Flame" Friday.

This is a weekly post that will be "short and sweet" (kinda like me...)

Just a word and a phrase, a sentence or a question...just a little something to "fan the flame" of your creativity!

Today's word: integrity

What does it mean to live a life of integrity?

Let me know what you think!!

“This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you…For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:6-7)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"

Thursday, September 2, 2010


Yesterday we talked about “love your neighbor.”

Today I want to share some thoughts about the second part of the commandment: “…as yourself.”

Have you ever thought about this?

Do I really love myself??

It seems to me that there are two directions, two ends of the spectrum if you will, that one can go on this “loving yourself” idea.

One, you can love yourself too muchoverinflated ego.
Or, you can love yourself too little – deflated ego.

Isn’t it interesting how often Satan works in the extremes?

So, if I’m supposed to love my neighbor as myself – how am I supposed to love myself properly?

We all know that PRIDE is sin. It was at the root of Satan’s rebellion, and it was the reason for the The Fall.

It isn’t difficult to pick out the narcissist in a crowd. Self-focus, self-promotion, self-appeasement – all obnoxious, right? We do not want to be the person with a head too big to fit into a room!

Unfortunately, sometimes we swing too far in the other direction.

Haven’t you been around someone who constantly puts themselves down? Who NEVER has a good thing to say? The “woe is me” thing gets kinda tiring, doesn’t it? And it’s still “self”-focus, isn’t it?

Sometimes we can fall into a “martyr” mentality. We think of ourselves as nothing. Terrified of being “selfish,” we neglect to be “self-caring.” And that often leads to overtired, defeated, ineffective Christians.

So, what to do?

What’s the Bible have to say?

In Romans 12:3, we are urged to: “Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves…”

In 1 Corinthians 1:31, we are admonished: “If you want to boast, boast only about the LORD.”

OK – Lord, how do YOU look at me?

1. I was made in God’s image (Genesis 1:26-27)
2. I was planned (Psalm 139)
3. I am valuable to God (Matthew 10:29-30)
4. I was worth dying for (John 3:16)
5. I am God’s child (John 1:12)
6. I bring delight to God (Zephaniah 3:17)
7. I will live with God forever (John 14:2-3)

That’s good stuff!

So, learn to love yourself as God does – with an honest evaluation (I am a saved sinner), and a humble heart (I am nothing apart from Him).

The key to an honest and accurate self-evaluation is knowing the basis of our self-worthour identity in Christ.”
(From the Life Application Study Bible, NLT, c. Tyndale Publishers, 2004)

Don’t miss your true value in God’s eyes!

Do you love yourself?

BLOG = “Blessedly Leaning On God!”