SAYING GOODBYE

Saying goodbye is so terribly hard! We rarely say “goodbye” when we’re just walking out the door as I think about it. It’s more likely, “Have a good day”, or “I had a great time”, or “See you soon!” Goodbye sounds so final and serious with long term implications.

Today I attended the funeral of a lovely, sweet, much-loved friend who very unexpectedly stopped breathing one night a few weeks ago. In that moment, her stunned husband was a widow, her kids were motherless, and grand babies without a Grandma. There was no warning for this event at all and everyone was shocked and surprised. On some level, we know we’re going to die. Don’t we? But do we really think about it and what it might mean?

I’m not writing about insurance, advance directives, or going through “your stuff,” although all of the above are valuable and worth the effort. But, after sitting through the emotional time of remembering this sweet life this morning, I realize again that our time is FLEETING. You or someone you thought you can’t live without, will be gone. This is a BIG destination and one that quite possibly ought to get more of our consideration. . . Because. It matters!

“Very truly I tell you, whoever hears My word and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life and will not be judged, but has crossed over from death to life.” John 5:24

After Lazarus died, Jesus went and spoke to his sister Martha. “Then Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that whatever You ask of God, God will give You.” Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” Martha said to Him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.” Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” She said to Him, “Yes, Lord, I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.”” (John 11:21-27).

“I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but by me.” John 14:6

Belief does not require effort on our part. It requires submission. It requires trust. We don’t have it all figured out, after all! Trust is bending a knee to the One who has all the answers and believing He will lead the way and guide us safely home.

The best of all is that our goodbye is NOT quite so final or serious. When we lose a believer to death, we have confidence we will see them again and in a much better place. To have someone know that you are entrusting your eternal destiny to the Only One who can do something about that, is powerfully encouraging for them. Today I said goodbye to my friend Richelle rejoicing she made it Home. No one saw this one coming and it is a great sorrow. For sure, she will be missed. But “Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope.” 1 Thessalonians 4:13. She has made it home to paradise. Goodbye, my sweet friend.

SORROW and UNCERTAINTY😳

I have several dear friends and family members who have been broadsided by life in the last several months. Unimagined events seem to have stolen their future hopes, robbed them of their health, and taken lives of loved ones. We seem to have come face to face with realities in our personal lives for which we really weren’t prepared. In addition, the status of our world and the rumors of war have us staring in disbelief at a new normal that grows darker and more unsettling by the day. We don’t recognize our lives or the world in which we live.

Where do we find solid ground when all that we thought we know seems lost? How do we face and process the battles that demand our attention and where do we find encouragement to continue on? The best place I know to find courage and hope to deal with difficulty is in the words of the Bible.

Jesus’ infamous disciple, Peter wrote, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. …” 1 Peter 5:6, 7. Due time. Sometimes due time is going to take awhile. But in the midst of your pain, give Jesus your fears, stress, and anxiety because He CARES and will be close to you.

Jesus cares about what we care about. He came from the Father to live among us and be tempted as we are. He was hated, betrayed, mocked, ridiculed, savagely beaten, and then nailed to a cross – He KNEW how hard his human life would be, but He chose to come to provide a way out: SALVATION in the power of His name. By trusting in His sacrifice on our behalf. By acknowledging He is our only hope. And believing in what only He can do. We have access to His peace and our eternity with Him.

The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Deut 31:8

Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:4

Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.  ‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭4:16‬

Lord, we are in a world that can at times be stressful and heart-breaking. We need your love, mercy, grace and very presence to help us just to stay on our feet and keep breathing. Help us to keep our eyes focused on You. There is much we will never understand about life. There is much we despair of as we live in these difficult times. Yet we trust that this was known from the beginning and You have us in the palm of your hands. I pray those who do not know You, would SEEK You. I pray You would reveal Yourself to them. And for those of us who love You but are hurting by the storms all around, I pray Your mercy and grace, in the power of Jesus’ name.

HOPE in Uncertain Times

How much we need You, Lord. You have promised through the ages to BE our living hope, our Rock and our Redeemer. Who else was foretold as was Jesus so many thousands of years before He was born? What other religious leader’s name, place of birth, method of execution, and plan for the ages was ever revealed and in such absolute accuracy BEFORE they occurred?

“I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse;
and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you” (Genesis 12:3) “When your days are over and you rest with your ancestors, I will raise up your offspring to succeed you, your own flesh and blood, and I will establish his kingdom. He is the one who will build a house for my Name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever” (2 Samuel 7:12–13). “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel” Isaiah 7:14

Springtime in Texas


How grieved many of us are by what appears to be the actions and plans Satan and his army of fallen spirits manifesting in our nation and our world. The darkness is swirling and encroaching, but You are our protector and our provision – our HOPE. You warned us the world around us would become more and more difficult in the end times. The statues of great leaders of our country being knocked down, murders, lawlessness, immorality, suicide, ongoing virus fears, and the mandate to change our nation into something very dark and immoral – to name but a few – have robbed us of what we knew as “normal.” Wars and rumors of wars and saber rattling is now very apparent on the horizon. None of this is a surprise to you. You warned us of these things throughout the Old Testament in Daniel, Ezekial, and Isaiah to name a few of the many. And Jesus himself told us. He came to get our attention, to point the way and in His excruciating death on our behalf, to BE the Way.

“When John, who was in prison, heard about the deeds of the Messiah, he sent his disciples to ask him, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else?’

“Jesus replied, ‘Go back and report to John what you hear and see: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor. Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me'” (Matthew 11:2–6).

I sit at Your feet this morning, Lord, and my spirit is warmed by Your great love and the protection of Your grace, mercy and power. And my heart is strengthened and renewed.
Forgive me when my desire to be a peacemaker or a voice of any kind, may be received as a clanging gong. Not everyone will agree with or like me. But Your words are trustworthy!

Help us to be Your hands and feet. Help us to stand on Your Word of Truth. We need You, Lord and YOU are the only hope for our world.

1 Peter 1:3-5 NIV
[3] Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, [4] and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, [5] who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.

Are you an Ocean or a Mountain Person?

Everyone seems to be drawn to one or the other. I suppose there are some of us who are drawn to the desert as well (who would have ever thought), but usually when you take off for parts unknown it is to the beaches or to the high places.

Here are some of my paintings from my Gallery entitled Ocean Breezes

Arizona does have mountains so I share some of these with you as well. I invite you to take a look at some more of my Arizona Dreaming gallery.

Praying for you as you start this new year! Believe good things for your life, step out in faith, trust the Lord and seek after the direction that tugs on your heart.

Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4

It’s Beginning to Look A LOT Like Christmas🎄

Christmas means different things to all of us. It can be a time of great joy or a time of great stress due to “pressures of the season.” But at the heart of it, Christmas is a joyful celebration of the birth of our Savior over 2000 years ago. Below are images that speak Christmas to me – snow covered trees, cardinals, candles, shepherds and the star, hot cocoa, Christmas cards, Christmas trees, and snow-covered chapels. Whatever speaks the season to you, I pray a breath of peace, a chorus of beauty, and a warm cup of comfort and joy over you and yours this Christmas 2021.

If this Christmas is painful for you, I am praying a supernatural touch from Jesus. There has been unimaginable illness and loss these past many months. I know many who have added grief to the colors of their holiday season. And this is never something intentionally added to anyone’s Christmas list. But for many it has shown up, uninvited and certainly unwanted.

If this is you, my heart aches for you this holiday season. I pray the story of the Nativity would remind you how very much you are loved: “unto us a Child is born. Unto us a Son is given and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, Almighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.”

Encourage someone who is hurting. HELP SOMEONE who could use your help. GIVE to a family or to an organization to meet tangible needs. SO many have lost so much in the recent storms! LORD, the needs of the world are beyond our comprehension. So many are grieving so much loss and suffering so much misery that it overwhelms us. But we can do something if we listen for Your nudge. Help us to be Your hands and feet especially now and in this season.

In Jesus’ parable in Matthew 25:35-40 He said, “For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. 36 I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.” The hearers asked when had they done that and He said, 40I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’

LOVE ONE ANOTHER