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  • Counting the Cost
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    Are You Worth Your Salt?





    In Luke 14:25-34, Jesus speaks about the cost of being His. The cost is great. Did you stop and consider the actual cost before you surrendered your life to Him? Or did you just quickly repeat a little sinner’s prayer after someone led it, and hurry on to the buffet line with all the other church goers?


    This society is notorious for looking for the easy way out. We spend time, money and energy on all things quick and easy.  And painless. Most people avoid anything that appears to be a challenge, a little hard work, or could cause others to criticize them.


    Jesus Himself said that you cannot be called “His” if you do not put Him above everything and everyone else. He means what He says. His will and His design for your life must supersede your parents, siblings, boss, spouse, friends, and whatever opinions or plans they have for you.


    The cost is great to be His. When you submit your life, receiving the Holy Spirit of God into your being, you have made a contract that is eternal. It’s not just a free pass to heaven. There are directions spelled out in that contract. It means you commit to living your life the way that He instructs. There are innumerable blessings, but today we’re talking about the costs. Jesus compared it to a person beginning construction of a building. The person calculates the costs involved in seeing it through to completion before he ever begins. Or a king preparing to go to war, who calculates what is needed to defeat a bigger army than his own. Thought before action.


    What are some of the costs? Jesus said you cannot become His disciple without giving up everything. If we truly have given up everything to follow Him, how can we nonchalantly join into the world’s way of thinking and doing things? That knocks us off the track. That makes us just one of the world’s crowd, blending in and not making any difference in the world.


    In that same passage, He said if you’ve lost your salt, you’re only good for the manure pile. Stinks,huh? That makes it pretty clear! For us to be the salt, as He told us to be, we must act as salt---a preservative of good, and add a special flavor to life on this earth. To do those things, we cannot live and behave as the unbelievers do. We must stand strong, set apart, and called to something bigger. This is one cost of being His. There are many.


    If you did not count the cost before signing on, you will find this contract very difficult to fulfill. It is a challenging road, even for those who did count the cost. Never take it lightly. It is serious business to our Lord. He expects obedience and commitment; nothing less. If we’re serious about our commitment, He helps us all the way. If we are apathetic and worldly, not seeing the bigger picture, we will pay a price.


    I challenge you today to examine your heart and your actions. It is time to be absolutely sure whose side you are on. Where is your loyalty? If you have sat idly on the fence, focusing on political correctness, not offending anyone, and lost your salt, you are in danger! You might be on the manure pile. Read your Bible. It’s spelled out clearly there. It says He will spit you out of His mouth. (Rev 3:16)  I am taking the challenge seriously. I only confront you with the same questions I present to myself. Spend time with Him today and ask Him to show you how you’re doing in the salt department. Consider the cost of being His. He paid a tremendous price for you; the cost you pay is nothing in comparison.


    Written on Thursday, 06 October 2016 00:00 in Guest Author/Blogger No comment Read 96 times
NancyI hope you enjoy my blog posts as well as visiting some links to other great sites.
  • Election Campaign Blues
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    I’m being asked quite often now how I see the election. Actually, most of those who ask really do not want to know. They just want to see if one more person is on their side….or not. What I have to say will not resonate with most of my followers and friends.


    First of all, I am conservative in most aspects of the liberal/conservative arena. I have never been registered as a Republican for reasons I’d rather not go into here. I was a registered Democrat until the late 80’s when I began to see many discrepancies between my Christian life and growth, and their agendas. Again, a topic for another day. (And yes, of course there are Christian Democrats. Let’s not get off course.)


    That being said, this year is undoubtedly the most brutal, ugly and contentious election year I’ve ever seen. I am apalled by and deeply disappointed in those who call themselves Christians who daily post nasty, scathing, gossipy, and often untrue memes and articles against their opponent, whomever that might be.  I expect that from non-Christians, but stop pretending to be a compassionate, loving Christ follower when you are exhibiting ungodly, unChristlike behaviors and attitudes! I really hate what our children are learning from these examples.


    Why are you drinking the Kool-Aid? Why do you quickly believe every story about Trump or about Hillary and jump on those stories with gusto, when both sides are corrupt and full of lies? Yes, they are! If one takes the time to first-pray, second-listen to the Holy Spirit, and thirdly-do some research from credible sources (not mainstream media, fox news, cnn or other wild card publications) you will discover some awful truths about both sides. Our country is not what it once was. Yes, there has always been corruption and dishonesty, but we have surpassed a level of belief at this point that leaves one reeling.


    I do not know why they’re even having debates. We learn nothing about what they will do as president. We only watch juvenile, hateful attacks on each other. It’s ridiculous. A useless double standard exists---since they both have lists of dark skeletons in their pasts.


    The office of president is a job. It is a position of power and leadership, but it is a job for a person to work at each day. The president is not our pastor. He/She is not required to be America’s pastor. It would be awesome to have a person who lived by biblical principles and had strong moral character. But, to do the job requires expertise and sound judgment beyond knowing the Bible. Just as one presents a resume for any position, this one requires a strong background of wisdom and experience. I wish people would stop trying to make the candidates into anointed disciples of Christ----they’re not!!!  Neither of them!


    Church goers have developed their own manifesto of what American life is for a godly person. It goes something like this: Be a flag waving, patriotic Republican, going to church every time the doors are open. Talk about the Constitution as though it’s equal to the Bible, and any time anyone dares to reject any aspect of the way things are done, reject them!!. I’m not saying all those things are wrong in and of themselves, but flags and patriotism are really not part of your theology. (Idolatry comes to mind.)


    Then there’s the Democrats. The older ones believe that everything is just like it was back in the day. Democrats out there helping the poor, serving the community, and lifting the downtrodden. (Some are--and guess what? Some Republicans are too!)  The younger ones see what hasn’t worked and are questioning everything, rebelling against everything, and taking even what was good and twisting it to fit their new agendas. Basically, no matter what the Bible or the Constitution says, rebel against it and make up your own---which has got to be better than what was. And if you’re a Christian (which to them,incidentally, is not important, and is often a liability) use your new agenda as an offshoot to your own gospel. Everybody has their own version.


    My position is that the Bible is the holy, infallible, correct word of God. That is my foundation. If I do not have that, I have nothing. If I can make up a new version for each season of life, or to fit a candidate, it doesn’t stand as a firm foundation. There is nothing in my Bible about making my country, my flag, my president or my political party my all in all. Nothing that tells me to do any of the above. We can argue all day about what Jesus would’ve done. He never fought the Roman authorities, never cursed them, never carried signs or took political stands. Standing for godliness, yes, but beating down the opposition party with hatefulness, no!


    His life, His words, His position of strength was always, ALWAYS, about the Kingdom of heaven. This world is not our home. If the flag, or a political party, or some part of the constitution is more important to us than His Word, we have failed. We are mandated to love, to spread the gospel and to follow the laws of the land. There are all kinds of distortions of all this, but the bottom line is love. We talk about love, but spew hatred. Both parties do it; it’s rampant.


    False teachings within the church feed into this doctrine that the president needs to be our pastor. Nowhere in scripture are we taught that Christians are to take over and dominate all the institutions of the world. We are to evangelize the world, in loving compassion, and speak the truth in love.


    Donald Trump is not satan. Hillary is not satan. Neither of them is our savior either. Their agendas are what they are and there’s deception on both sides. It really isn’t that hard to see, if a person opens their eyes. But the truth is that people don’t want to see it. Because if they don’t, they can continue on in the feeding frenzy of the blood infested waters of our country.  It appears to me that all, Christians and non, are enjoying the bloodbath. It sickens me.


    I’m not claiming to be above it all, all-knowing or super-godly, so save your time in attacking me. I answer to God and God alone. My attitudes and behaviors are laid before Him daily and He deals with me like a good parent. I have a healthy fear of God too, and His ways are so much higher than ours that my feeble opinions are of miniscule value. Just answering what I’ve been asked.


    I pray for my country daily. God’s judgment is falling on us for our wayward ways. If you don’t believe me, just sit back and watch. Whoever is elected could easily be allowed by God as part of His judgment.  Life is changing rapidly in the USA and will continue to. I shudder to think how I would survive it without Christ in me, the Hope of Glory.

    Written on Thursday, 20 October 2016 00:00 in Blog No comment Read 23 times
  • Tell Your Heart to Beat Again
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    I want to take a moment to thank you all for your loving support and prayers over these past difficult weeks. You have encouraged me and reminded me how important it is to be loved in the midst of pain. I have allowed myself space to grieve and realized the amount of energy that it takes. It knocks me down at the most unexpected times. But in the grand scheme of things, I feel the Presence of the Spirit within and around me, holding me up and infusing me with strength and peace. I know it will take time to get on top of it, but of course, the loss will always be felt. Losing your life partner, your closest friend and confidante, prayer partner, and so much more, cannot be overcome overnight. I just thank God every day for His beautiful ways of sustaining me and turning my face to the future with hope and faith.


    Every day on the radio I hear the Danny Gokey song, "Tell Your Heart to Beat Again" and it has become the Lord's hug to me.

    I focus on the lyrics and feel His peace.


    You're shattered
    Like you've never been before
    The life you knew
    In a thousand pieces on the floor
    And words fall short in times like these
    When this world drives you to your knees
    You think you're never gonna get back
    To the you that used to be

    Tell your heart to beat again
    Close your eyes and breathe it in
    Let the shadows fall away
    Step into the light of grace
    Yesterday's a closing door
    You don't live there anymore
    Say goodbye to where you've been
    And tell your heart to beat again

    Just let that word wash over you
    It's alright now
    Love's healing hands have pulled you through
    So get back up, take step one
    Leave the darkness, feel the sun
    Cause your story's far from over
    And your journey's just begun

    Tell your heart to beat again
    Close your eyes and breathe it in
    Let the shadows fall away
    Step into the light of grace
    Yesterday's a closing door
    You don't live there anymore
    Say goodbye to where you've been
    And tell your heart to beat again

    Let every heartbreak
    And every scar
    Be a picture that reminds you
    Who has carried you this far
    'Cause love sees farther than you ever could
    In this moment heaven's working
    Everything for your good

    Tell your heart to beat again
    Close your eyes and breathe it in
    Let the shadows fall away
    Step into the light of grace
    Yesterday's a closing door
    You don't live there anymore
    Say goodbye to where you've been
    And tell your heart to beat again
    Your heart to beat again
    Beat again
    Oh, so tell your heart to beat again

    Artist: Danny Gokey
    Album: Hope In Front Of Me ©  


    I hope to get back to a regular blogging schedule soon. Again, I love you all and thank you for all your loving messages.




    Written on Thursday, 16 June 2016 00:00 in Blog No comment Read 695 times
  • Devout Men Are Taken Away and No One Understands
    Written by


    As I move forward from one day to the next, I wonder about God’s plans and purposes. Don’t you? I ask Him a lot of questions.  I already know many of the answers, but still, they are perplexing.  I wonder how He figures I should be the one left behind to deal with bills, car repairs, insurance mix-ups and the neighborhood mountain lion. I think my husband, who worked so hard for years, not to mention giving his life in military service, deserved to receive his reward. I don’t begrudge him that, but I can’t help meditating on what lessons I’ve yet to learn in the aftermath of his leaving. Lessons I probably, in truth, do not want to learn.


    If you are in a season of grieving, as I am, I want you to be sure to take time every day to stop and really relax and let whatever questions, comments, complaints, etc. that rise up, be expressed.Tell God how you feel.  He knows anyway.  You can cry, yell, question, journal, or maybe even use your pillow as a punching bag, but you need an outlet for all that pent-up pain. Don’t stuff it down. If you do suppress it, I promise you that at some point it will explode into existence, and it could hit at a time that is not at all convenient.


    This thing called grief is like a monster dressed in pretty clothes.  Right when you’re having good memories and feeling the peace of acceptance and progress, some painful thoughts hit like a grenade and bang----a stomach punch knocks you down.  I’ve learned to cry out to God right at that moment for His strength and love to overtake me.  He answers so beautifully.


    I hope that by sharing some of my journey through grief, it might help you, since several of you have mentioned your own struggles.  It’s ironic. I’ve been a grief counselor and know what to expect, but when my own hits, it still packs a punch. Knowledge is not everything. But God gave us emotions and they have a purpose. How could we love someone deeply and not feel any pain when they’re gone? I know I’ll be with him again for eternity, but frankly, right now it doesn’t help a whole lot to know that.  It does matter and I look forward to our reunion, but the aloneness of the moment is still very real.


    I thank God that He promises to never leave or forsake us. He is a wonderful father, husband and friend. He gives wisdom, comfort and peace. Without that sweet, gentle Spirit flooding my soul over and over, I’m sure I couldn’t do this. It’s a gift that I give thanks for constantly.  I’m going to survive, and I’m going to be okay. So are you---so hold fast to His promises and keep trusting.  And, since we know the direction our world is headed is menacing---perhaps God’s gift to my husband was to take him before things get worse. It’s something to think about!


    “The righteous perish, and no one ponders it in his heart; devout men are taken away,

    and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil.

    Those who walk uprightly enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death.” (Isa 57:1-2)

    Written on Sunday, 01 May 2016 00:00 in Blog No comment Read 900 times
  • To Every Thing There is a Season
    Written by

    My heart is so full of gratitude as I look back on the past seven days. No doubt they’ve been the most difficult seven days of my life. The first day I held my precious husband’s hand as our souls disconnected, and he walked into eternity. The days following are a blur, but on this breezy Sunday afternoon I have, in the depths of my being, the peace that surpasses all understanding. That doesn’t mean I don’t get hit by waves of grief that almost knock me off my feet. There is absolutely nothing as jarring to your spirit as looking at the person you love with all your heart lying in a coffin. How does one do that without searing pain? And then, how is it possible that I can have perfect peace in my heart today? Grief will still be, but In the overarching scheme of things, I’m experiencing a beautiful confidence that the Lord is holding me and that He is at the same time fellowshipping with my husband. It’s a wonderful feeling. I am thankful.


    Life is both a mystery and a stark reality at the same time; a curious dichotomy.  I have been present at births as well as at deaths. Both experiences open one’s eyes to the magnificence of our God. He breathes breath into a body and He stops the beating heart, snuffing out breath. It’s His sovereign decisions that cause us to celebrate one day and another day to mourn. …”all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” Psalm 139:16  The power is all His; the plan His as well.


    At times my grief turns into a bit of envy. I realize that my husband is in the Presence of God; he’s enjoying laughter with family and friends he’s missed. He has no more pain, no more worries, stressors or sickness. I’m here missing him, wondering what comes next, dealing with unresolved bills, situations and responsibilities. My humanness bleeds over onto my joy that he is in heaven.


    As I seek the Lord, laying all my concerns and questions at His feet, I sense that calming, peaceful Existence taking hold of my mind and body. I know without any doubt that He is with me, loving me, holding me and reassuring me that He will never leave me or forsake me. He knows what is facing me and He’s already there. Each day will find its own resolutions as He sorts things out. All I have to do is trust and obey. And to know Him. Knowing Him means knowing it’s all covered...perfectly.


    The day will come when my breath will be snuffed out, my heartbeat stopped. I will have the joy of walking into the arms of Jesus, greeted by family and friends. What I endured on earth will not matter at all. All that will matter is being in the Presence of the One Who controls it all. And experiencing His love and grace. When grief tries to derail me, I am determined to take hold of His promises and hang on tight. The alternative would be pointless and pitiful. “I can do all things through Christ Who gives me strength.” And I am eternally grateful for the strength and hope and courage He is pouring into me.

    Thank you for your prayers and love during this season of my life.

    Written on Monday, 11 April 2016 00:00 in Blog No comment Read 841 times

Welcome to my website!

"Living in God's Rest...At Peace in a Chaotic World" "Masked in Deceit,"  and Faith's Illusions are all available now.  Living in God's Rest can be purchased from any of your favorite booksellers online or in stores. Masked in Deceit and Faith's Illusions, Christian novels, are available from Amazon. All books are offered in ebook versions as well.  I always appreciate reviews on the seller's sites.  Just click the books below and you will find links to purchase.



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Have a blessed day!
 - Nancy

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