Through much prayer and counsel, my husband and I knew we couldn’t afford to stay there any longer. We had to move. The Lord quickly provided renters who were able to move in and take over the payments, and we were miraculously approved to buy another house that had been in foreclosure for over a year. With only a few cosmetic repairs, we were able to make our “new” home move-in ready for our family of seven.Read More
Pondering what it means to “pay attention,” I am suddenly more aware of the Holy Spirit speaking to me, particularly as it relates to my children. For their sake, I am learning to be silent, to wait, and most importantly to pray. I must allow time for the Holy Spirit to speak, direct, nudge, or convict them--whatever the need may be at that specific moment. The open doors that God gives me to respond are precious, like rare gems, such as a word of affirmation or a prayer offered up in the secret place of my closet, sometimes on my knees pleading for Him to intervene. Only the Holy Spirit really knows how to intercede or to speak to their hearts in a way that is effective and life-changing.Read More
What are the Seasonings of Christmas?
You know those certain aromas you crave to set the mood and the tone of your home for Christmas. Which scents are your favorites? Is it the cinnamon or pumpkin spice? How about pine and myrhh? Maybe it's the aromas of cooking and baking which set up the memories of Christmas. The scent of celery for the stuffing simmering over heat. Maybe the hints of vanilla?
Twenty-eight years ago, I heard a profound statement that has stayed with me to this day. “Thankfulness is a mighty weapon in the hands of God’s people.” As I have been pondering what it means to “rejoice,” it dawned on me: In order for one to rejoice, one must also be thankful. The two go hand in hand. Joy is an overflow of a grateful heart.
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This is where I stop too many times. I read of God’s wondrous works, His miracles and His intimate interactions with real flesh and blood people like me and I want it. I want it all! The idea of my Maker, Father, but more the Creator of all things would stoop so low as to look into my face astounds me to the core of my being. Yet I want it.Read More
Many years ago the teacher of our Young Marrieds Sunday School Class would regularly remind us to practice the presence of God. His admonition became a goal for me. I have remembered it often over the years and more often in the past few years. Psalm 105:4 says, “Seek the Lord and his strength, seek his presence continually.” I can’t say that I am aware of his presence continually, but I am confident He is there whether I am aware of it or not.Read More
Hmm. I wonder if we should all stop here and ask Jesus what He really wants us to know about the way He sees Mary, Martha, you and me? Is it true that He frowns on the "doing"? Does Jesus really prefer Mary over Martha? Is it even true that Jesus plays favorites?Read More
When I think of the word legitimate, the first thing that comes to mind is the “real deal.” There simply is nothing else like it, which leads me to the brochure I found in my daughter’s bedroom. The message was specifically pointing out the difference between Christianity and Islam, but it was the heart behind the message that truly defined the word legitimate for me.Read More
I was looking for someone to hold my hand and teach me what I didn't know. Somehow I felt that as a woman I should know how to do these things. And truly, if I had been willing, my mom would have taught me about fabric, how to cut patterns, and sew. I wasn't willing then, but I am now. As I've gotten older and received more healing from perfectionism and fear of failure, I actually enjoy the learning process. And so, I was intrigued. Again, I inquired of the Lord, and felt He was saying, "Yes, ask her to teach you."Read More
I love to watch people, seeing them interacting, having a good time together. However, in my observations, I have also noticed that sometimes little children will look to their parents and their parents don’t notice them. The parent is involved in something else, and the child does not get the eye contact for which he or she is searching. The moment of connection the child is looking for is lost.Read More
From my perspective, as the driver, I had done everything right. We were at a stop light of a major intersection. I stopped. I looked in all directions. I waited and then looked again to the right and left and ahead. Since there were no cars on the road in any direction, I pulled around the corner to the right. And then... blue lights...Read More
To this day, I can’t drive by their old house without my eyes filling up with tears, and it was this very week as I chose to take another route home (just so I could see their old house again) that I received a glimpse of freedom. As I imagined Grandpa Bachtel in heaven, where there’s no more sin, no more pain, and no more suffering, I realized this is what it means to be truly free.Read More
So this week I combined two words for which I had been asking the Lord to show me His insight. These words are Father and Sojourn. What I heard from Him was the reminder that
He, my Father, is with me wherever I go.
So when my sojourn is to a place I don’t understand, a difficult place in life, I just need to be patient and do what He asks me to do, remembering that this is a temporary place, and it too shall pass.
This is just what the Israelites did with Joshua when they came across a block in their path. They were told to circle the huge wall of Jericho for six days, and that He, God, would deliver them from this difficult place. They obeyed God's strange request to circle the wall for six days straight and waited for Him to move. Nothing appeared to happen for six days, but then on the seventh day a miracle happened and the walls came tumbling down. Oh, what a reward they received for their simple obedience and trust in The Father.
I want that too God! Thank You, Father, for reminding me that you are always with me and that sojourns are temporary.
~ Meet Dana Charbonneau ~
Dana Charbonneau has been married for 33 years to Edward. They have three wonderful grown children, and just recently their third grandchild was born. Dana was a special ed teacher for many years and now enjoys substituting in special education classes. Having moved 15 times in her life, she now especially enjoys sharing life with friends and family around the country.
My request was and still is not too hard for Almighty God. What I did not understand as I made this request of God for freedom is how much it would cost me personally. I did not count the cost at that time. I didn't know how. I was immature in my faith and fairly untested in matters of faith. I simply made my request for freedom and trusted God to take care of it.Read More
My earthly father was a large man, 6’4” and solid. He made me feel safe and my favorite place to sit was wrapped up on his lap. I felt small and protected, feminine and not too much. I didn’t have to fight anything while I was safely ensconced on his lap. It was a place of peace for me.Read More
The day continued to roll by, still no prospects. I started to wonder if I had missed my opportunity. By the time of intermission at the play, I proceeded to the restroom and surprisingly ran into an old friend whom I hadn’t seen in years. Our children had attended Masters Academy together at Hebron Baptist Church nearly ten years ago. At the time, she was a practicing Buddhist, but I had remembered her as one who was seeking truth and had many questions about Jesus…. read more.Read More
I love this word picture. Being so full of God’s words that nothing else can fit in. This visual not only helps to keep my soul in His Peace, but also fills my mind with His instructions!!Read More
I know, Lord, because You say so, affliction is good and builds character and all that, but that doesn't make it easy. And I'm not going to pretend it's easy in front of other people either. Believe me, Lord, I know I do my fair share of resisting affliction even though I want the benefits You promise. I just really don't love going through the afflicting part.Read More
I have been looking at old slides from my grandparents. This activity brought many happy thoughts to me seeing the old pictures of the vacations that they took and some that we took with them. As I think about the word remember, I came across the verse…Read More
June 6th marks the 10-year anniversary of my husband’s accident. My husband was changed forever, our family was changed forever, our marriage was changed forever. And each year as we near the anniversary date I feel the weight of remembering. Some years have been easier than others, but for some reason this 10-year mark has been heavy. Sometimes memories sneak up on you, and out of nowhere it slams into you taking your breath away…Read More