Why Is a Woman Who Fears the Lord Someone to Be Praised?

Most of us as women and believers in Christ have heard and possibly even memorized Proverbs 31:30: “Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.”

The word “praised” here is hālal, and it means hers is a life that shines, a life that others can look at and boast about, a life worth celebrating.

But have you ever stopped and really considered why? WHY is a woman who fears the Lord someone to be praised? What would it even look like to be a woman who fears the Lord? How and why would she be different?

Understanding this matters. Because this verse isn’t simply a free pass from having to meet the world’s beauty standards. It’s an invitation to a truly beautiful life lived out of God’s ways and standards.

I love how the Amplified version helps us get a better grasp on what it even means to fear the Lord:  

“Charm and grace are deceptive, and [superficial] beauty is vain,
But a woman who fears the Lord [reverently worshiping, obeying, serving, and trusting Him with awe-filled respect], she shall be praised.” Proverbs 31:30

Here is how I sat down and broke it down:

A woman who fears the Lord has a HEART OF WORSHIP. Hers is a heart filled with gratitude and praise. She looks for and recognizes God’s goodness in her life and declares, “My God is good. My God provides. My God has been, is, and will forever be faithful. What have I to fear?” When she struggles to praise Him for her circumstances, she knows she can worship Him simply for who He is. And the joy, the peace, and the hope this brings her? It overflows into her words and her countenance, her attitude and her actions.

A woman who fears the Lord LIVES A LIFE OF OBEDIENCE – doing things God’s way instead of being wise in her own eyes. Living by His Word. Listening to the Holy Spirit. Walking in humility and trust. Positioning herself to receive His blessings (Psalm 128:1), surrendered in such a way that she can be a blessing, and avoiding so many messes of her own making.

A woman who fears the Lord SERVES THE LORD. She knows she has been graciously and mercifully bought with a price. Jesus paid with His own blood for her salvation. Her life is not her own. And so she serves Him with gladness. All that she does is out of an overflow of love for Him and gratitude for all that He has done for her. No striving or performing. She isn’t seeking the approval of others or trying to be someone she isn’t. She isn’t spread too thin or completely shut down by the fear of man. All that she does is as unto the Lord.

A woman who fears the Lord TRUSTS IN HIM. She isn’t frantic. She isn’t fearful. She isn’t controlling or manipulative. And she isn’t trying to be the Savior of the world or anyone else around her. She TRUSTS God. She trusts He sees her. She trusts He hears her. She trusts He loves her. She trusts His Word. She trusts His wisdom. She trusts His ways and His plans. She trusts His faithfulness. What a calming and peaceful presence she would be! What hope would radiate off of her!

And a woman who fears the Lord has a HEART OF REVERENCE AND AWE toward God. She knows who is God (Him) and who is not (her). She does not assume she knows better than Him. Her heart is one of deep respect. She takes time to ponder His majesty, His might, His goodness, all that He is, all that He has created… and she lets those thoughts humble her and fill her with wonder. She approaches Him with the freedom of a dearly loved daughter, but also with the honor due to her King.

This woman? She is settled. Secure. Sure of the hope she has in Jesus. Steady and not easily shaken by the things of this world. She certainly isn’t perfect, but she is surrendered and growing.

She is the kind of woman I want to be! Perhaps she is the kind of woman you want to be, as well. But it starts with a heart that “fears” the Lord. This isn’t about fixing ourselves. Notice how each area is focused on HIM. Becoming a more peaceful, joy-filled, hopeful, and Christ-like woman – a woman worthy of praise – is the natural overflow out of fixing our eyes, fixing our praise, fixing our hearts, fixing our hope, fixing our trust, fixing our worship, fixing our affection on the Lord.

I know this is a longer post, but I pray you will take something with you and ponder it this week. Are you a woman who fears the Lord? Do you get hung up on that word “fear”? How does the Amplified version help you better understand it, and what area of “fearing” Him do you struggle with the most? Are you trying to “fix” yourself or are you fixing your eyes, your hope, your trust, your worship on and in Him?

May we be women who reverently worship, obey, serve, and trust God with awe-filled respect. Because this is what will lead to us being true blessings in this world. This is how we live lives worth celebrating. This is how we become the Jesus-radiating women God has called us to be.

Forever thankful for His love and grace in this process,

A Prayer for My Daughters From Head to Toe

Last year, I felt led to sit down and write out a prayer for my daughters in my journal. I have hesitated to post it here, simply because it is a very personal kind of thing. But I know what it’s like to not know what or how to pray when it comes to our children. And so, I’m sharing it.

These are prayers based on Scripture and birthed out of a mother’s heart of love for her people. You can easily change the wording to fit your sons. You can tuck your children’s names into the prayers. You can take these paragraphs and split them into a prayer focus a day. You can even use the Scripture to write out your own prayers. However you choose to use them, I pray they are a blessing, a help, and an encouragement to you.

A Prayer for My Daughters From Head to Toe

Lord, I pray my girls will have minds full of hope and Truth. Help them to be quick to take thoughts captive and make each one obedient to You. Let Your Word be their delight as they meditate on it day and night. Let YOUR wisdom be what they seek and tune the whole of their lives to. Give them creative ideas. And let the space where they think and process feel broad and spacious, clear and free. Not crowded or clouded by confusion. Not cluttered with lies and fears. May they be taught by You, and may their peace be great. (2 Corinthians 10:4-5; Joshua 1:8; Psalm 1:1-3, 18:19; Isaiah 26:3, 54:13)

Lord, I pray for their eyes. May they make a covenant with their eyes to set nothing wicked before them. Help them guard their eyes – protecting them from the snares of the enemy, making them wise to recognize when he’s trying to lead them astray. Help them fix their eyes on You, and help them to truly see You. To see You moving and working in their lives. To see themselves and others through the lens of Your love. To see You in Your written Word and Your created world. Open their eyes to see wondrous things… to see possibility… to see beauty… to see hope and grace and love. (Psalm 19:1; 101:3; 119:37; 119:18; John 14:21; Hebrews 12:1-2)

Bless their ears, Lord. May they learn to quickly discern what is Your voice and what is not. Quiet the voice of the enemy in their lives and help them tune their ears to You. Bring wise voices, godly voices, encouraging and exhorting and grounded in Your Truth voices to speak into their lives, and help them have the wisdom and humility to receive. May they tune their ears to Your voice daily… early… eagerly. May they lean in close to listen to You before anyone else and over anyone else. May they be quick to compassionately listen to others. But when there are voices they need to stop giving ear to, Lord, give my girls the strength and wisdom to walk away. (John 10:3-5; 27-30; Proverbs 13:20; Proverbs 15:31; Proverbs 27:17; Matthew 13:9; Jeremiah 33:3; Psalm 63:1-7; James 1:19-20)

I pray for their mouths, Lord. May they be filled with Your praises. May grace and peace and mercy reside on their lips. When they speak, may their words be beneficial to the hearers – full of grace, seasoned with salt, declaring Your goodness and Your name. Please forgive any places I have trained them in unkind or negative speech patterns with my own words. Break any habits that may have formed because of hearing me or others speaking gossip, slander, judgment, or hateful words. May they speak with wisdom and humility – words that build up and heal instead of destroying or tearing down. And may their words be a truly beautiful overflow of You residing in their hearts. (Psalm 19:14; 34:13; 71:8; 100; Proverbs 12:18, 16:24, 18:21, 31:26; Colossians 3:16, 4:6; Ephesians 4:29-31; James 3:9-12; Luke 6:45)

Lord, I pray for their hearts. Heal them in the deepest places from wounds that have already built up over the years. Heal them from rejection. Heal them from loss. Heal them from anything hurtful, unholy, or unforgiving trying to take up residence within them. Let their hearts beat for You and help them daily and diligently guard their hearts. Fill them with the truth of how high and wide and deep and long Your love is for them, and let them feel safe enough in that love to always come to You quickly in repentance. May their greatest desire be for more of You. May their hearts be tender to You and Your ways. And please send them people – friends, mentors, and one day husbands – who will be good for their hearts and careful with their hearts. (Psalm 34:18; 51:10; Psalm 19:12-14; Proverbs 4:23; Matthew 22:37-39; Deuteronomy 6:4-5; Ephesians 3:14-21)

Their hands, Lord. May they move in ways that are in alignment with who You are. Giving generously. Creating freely. Serving tenderly. May their hands always be open. Trusting what You give. Releasing as You lead. Free from striving. Faithful and diligent in all that You ask. Continually lifted up in praise. May their hands be instruments of kindness, of blessing, of Your love, and Your hope. May all that they create be done as an offering to You… offerings You can mightily use. (Psalm 63:4; Proverbs 31: 13, 17, 20, 31; Luke 6:38; Romans 6:13; 1 Peter 4:10)

And their feet. May they have feet quick to flee from evil and fully surrendered to following You. You know the plans You have for them. You have numbered their days, and You establish their steps. Keep their feet from slipping and help them stay in step with You, Lord. Help them not to lean on their own understanding, but, in all their ways, may they honor You and stay close to You. May they not walk in the counsel of the ungodly, stand in the path of sinners, or sit in the seat of the scornful. Instead, may they walk the ancient paths of the faithful. May the path to You be well worn in their hearts and lives. May they know they stand now and forever in Your grace as Your daughters. And may they move in wisdom. Move towards others without fear of rejection. Dance with You in glorious and beautiful ways. (Deuteronomy 28:14; Psalm 1:1-3; 37:27; 66:9, 121:3, 139:16; Proverbs 3:5-6, 4:25-27; 16:9; Habakkuk 3:19; Jeremiah 6:16; Romans 5:1-2)

Bless these beautiful girls, Lord. My daughters. Your daughters. From head to toe, Father, may they be blessed. Help them surrender all that they are, all to You. Guide them. Direct them. Protect them. Shepherd them. Strengthen them. And let them know and believe they are deeply and completely LOVED by You. Amen.

Blessings, dear friends,

God Doesn’t Promise to Be Our Superhero (He’s Actually Even Better)

I’ve been thinking about our love of superheroes. This world has no shortage of comic books, movies, and TV shows based on them.

My family and I could easily rattle off our own list of personal favorites.

And I think this human inclination is so very understandable. Deep down inside we know there has to be something better than the pain and brokenness of this world. And we want someone to fix it all.

We cheer as we watch good triumph over evil. We long to see justice prevail. We want all wrongs righted.

These are good things to want!

But this is where it gets tough… this is when we can begin to question a good God who doesn’t show up with the immediacy we love to see on the silver screen.

“Someone needs rescue, God. I need rescue! Where are You?!”

Because that’s what the good guys do, right? They show up right away and set things right.

That’s what the books and movies tell us. That’s what our hearts long for. That’s what seems to make the most sense.


We have a good God who asks us to, “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” (Romans 12:12, NIV)

We have a good God who reminds us to, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:2-4, NIV)

We have a good God who tells us, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5, NIV)

We have a good God who promises He is able to work all things together for good. (Romans 8:28) A good God who promises what the enemy intends for evil, He can use for good in our lives and the lives of countless others. (Genesis 50:20) A good God who reminds us that although His ways are not our ways,(Isaiah 55:8-9) His ways are still good. (Psalm 18:30; Deuteronomy 32:4) A good God who promises He is making everything right. (Revelation 21:4)

But here’s something He doesn’t promise. He doesn’t promise that His rescue will show up when or how we want. He doesn’t promise to be our superhero.

He’s actually someone even better.

He is infinitely wise and powerful, loving and good, understanding and merciful. He stands outside of what we know as time and sees everything. Nothing is too hard for Him, but He knows what needs to happen when. He is the perfect Redeemer and Rescuer, and He now and forever knows what we need better than we do.

Are there places in my own life I want to see Him move right now? Yes. For sure. Are there days I struggle to trust Him? Absolutely. I’m so very human.

But I’m reminding myself to keep turning and returning to His Word. To keep turning and returning to what I know of Him. To keep turning and returning to the One who has rescued me for all eternity because I can trust He won’t just up and forsake me.

I know all of this can be hard. So very, very, very hard. But we can keep staying disappointed in Him, or we can start asking Him to help us trust Him.

Let’s cry out to Him, wait patiently for Him, and know that His love isn’t always found in our immediate rescue. It’s found in the ultimate good He’s working out for us. It’s found in His presence that stays with us every step of the way. And sometimes, it’s even found in His delay.

“I waited patiently for the Lord;
he inclined to me and heard my cry.
He drew me up from the pit of destruction,
out of the miry bog,
and set my feet upon a rock,
making my steps secure.
He put a new song in my mouth,
a song of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear,
and put their trust in the Lord.” Psalm 40:1-3

Learning to truly trust Him,

One Small but Powerful Shift We Can Make In How We Read God’s Word

I tend to read God’s Word like a prescription. Like a manual. Like a textbook.

Like God is saying, “Here. Go do this and everything will be fine. Go do this, and I will finally be pleased with you. Go do this on your own and in your own power and then come back and see Me for My ‘well done.’”

But I can’t. I can’t do it on my own. I keep falling and failing and flailing. And I end up feeling disappointed in myself. Over and over again discouraged.

But it’s not a prescription or a manual or a textbook. It’s a promise.

It’s the Father declaring, “This is who I Am. This is who you are in Me. Yes, these are My holy expectations, but I know you can’t do any of this on Your own. That’s why I sent you My Son and sent you My Spirit and sent you this living and active Word. This is what I’m working out for you and in you and through you. Work with Me and know that what I have promised I will do. I can do. I am doing.”

And this shift in perspective is such sweet relief.

His Word isn’t a prescription. It isn’t a manual. It isn’t a mere textbook. It’s a PROMISE.

It’s also an invitation to a partnership with the One who is able.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

This passage? It’s about freedom from the heavy burden of religion. It’s a release from striving. From “you go and do all of these things on your own.” 

The easy yoke of Jesus is, “I have accomplished all of this for you. Now walk with Me. Learn from Me. Do things My way. The grace way. Grab hold of My promises and move by My Spirit and in My grace that enables you. My unending supply of unearnable but freely flowing grace.”

Have you been failing to live out His Word? Are you frustrated and disappointed in yourself? You aren’t a disappointment to Him! The fact you keep showing up? Keep turning back to Him and His ways? He is pleased with you. He already and always loves you. And He’s not asking You to do any of this on your own. 

Lean into the fact that you are firmly and fully loved. Rest in the knowledge that you are learning and growing. Settle it in your soul that this will be a lifelong journey. And trust that the One who is sanctifying you – shaping you to look more and more like Jesus – is faithful and able to do it. 

He has promised. And He’s a God who keeps His promises. 

“May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.” 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24

Love & Prayers,

When You Feel Like You’ve Got Spiritual Vertigo

The month of March held my very first ever (and hopefully my very last ever) case of vertigo.

Sweet mercy. For anyone who has ever had it or is currently struggling with it, I am so, so sorry. I had no clue.

The smallest head movement left me rushing to the bathroom to give back anything I had put in. (Oh, how I wish I were exaggerating.)

My only relief was to sit still. Oh, so very still with my eyes closed or looking straight ahead.

I didn’t want to move. I didn’t want to talk. I. Just. Wanted. To. Be. Still.

Thankfully, medication and some gentle exercises allowed for slow improvement over the course of a week.

But if I can be totally honest, dealing with vertigo physically helped me identify with where this year has held some spiritual vertigo.

It was an “aha” moment of, “Oh. Yes. This is what I’ve been feeling spiritually. Like everything is spinning and I can’t get my bearings and I just. need. to sit. still.”

And I have been. I’ve been sitting still. I’ve been slowing down. I’ve been honest with the Father that there are days when I just don’t know what to say or do. That I feel confused.

Not about my faith as a whole. Just as keeping my eyes fixed on one point helped me when the room was spinning physically, keeping my eyes fixed on Jesus has been the one thing that has helped me as things have felt swimmy and spinny spiritually.

And I type all of this out because I want you to know there is NO SHAME in going through seasons of spiritual vertigo. Sometimes life hits hard and leaves our souls spinning, and we need the Lord to help us get our bearings. And admitting to ourselves and others that we need to slow down isn’t a sign of being a weak or poor Christian. It isn’t shameful.


It would have been foolish (and dangerous) for me to hop in my car and drive my girls to school. It would have been self-defeating to try to plow through my day as if nothing was wrong. I had no option other than to give my body time and space to heal.

And it’s the same spiritually.

If everything is spinning, friend… if you can’t tell up from down… you don’t have to keep plowing ahead like everything’s fine. Slow down. Come to a full stop in some areas if you need to. Fix your eyes firmly on Jesus. And ask Him what healing looks like in this season.

“You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.” Isaiah 26:3 (ESV)

Praying for you,

There Are People Who Need the Harvest God Wants to Bring Through You

Glimpses of spring in my yard always stir my heart with feelings of expectation.

Green is coming. An abundance of beauty is coming.

Where all has appeared barren, hope feels tangible. Almost like I can taste it.

And as I drove past our local produce stand last week, I found myself happily anticipating the day they reopen with all things fresh and mouthwateringly delightful.

I thanked the Father for the hard work of sowing and tending farmers do that I never see. The work that leads to ripe strawberries, sweetly tart blackberries, sunshine-skinned squash, and, one of my very favorites, summery green okra with its hidden sticky seeds that make my heart so very happy.

And as I drove home, I was reminded of the hidden and holy work of sowing and tending when it comes to my own heart. How there will be a harvest of tangible fruit that others need. Fruit people will give thanks for. Fruit that will remind them of life and hope and light and all things good. Fruit that will nourish and encourage them.

But I have to keep sowing. I have to keep tending. I have to keep abiding and letting the Father tend to me.

And I just wanted to pop my head in here to remind you… there are people who need the harvest the Lord wants to bring through you, too. I know the daily behind-the-scenes work isn’t anything that typically gets applauded. But I’m over here cheering you on. I’m over here giving thanks for you and the hidden work you do.

Keep sowing His Word in every corner of your heart and life.
Keep asking Him to help you tend to the seeds you’ve sown and that area of soil presently needing some extra love and care.
Keep trusting the Father when He shows up with His pruning shears.
And keep rooting yourself deep in Christ – daily, hourly, minute-by-minute abiding in Him.

You’re doing a good work, friend. And there are people you may never even know who will be grateful for the fruit He keeps producing through you.

{Galatians 6:9; John 15:1-17}

Rooting for you from here as you keep rooting deep in Him,

You Aren’t Too Much for Jesus

One of my deepest sources of anxiety tends to be… well… me.

I frustrate myself to no end.

Why am I still so selfish? What is the deal with all of this pride? Why did I mess up in this same area … AGAIN? When am I ever going to get it together, love and act more like Jesus, change in the slightest for the love of Pete?!?!

Can anyone else relate?

But as I spent some time face down in prayer one morning, grieving and repenting over all of the mess still residing inside of me, the Lord redirected my heart to hope. Because that’s what repentance is really all about. It’s not a weapon for shaming us. It’s a grace-filled tool for changing us. It’s a lifeline of God’s pure and holy hope.

The hope found in the fact that Jesus forgives us.

The hope found in His willingness to wash us clean.

The hope that deep and lasting heart change isn’t all up to us.

The hope that He is both willing and able to do this sanctifying work in us.

Of course, the enemy of our souls wants us to think we’ve used up all available hope. He would love nothing more than for us to picture Jesus looking at us in utter disappointment as He asks, “Why can’t you just hurry up and get your act together?” Satan knows how powerful shame can be when it comes to keeping us stuck.

That’s why I want to share several truths with you today. Truths I pray will be freedom and hope for you as they have been for me:

Jesus isn’t shocked by you. 

You may feel a bit shocked by the yuck you’re still capable of, but Jesus isn’t caught off-guard by your sin or your desperate need for Him.

Scripture tells us He knows our every thought, word, and deed long before we do. (Psalm 139:1-4) He has always known every sin we would ever commit – even the ones we don’t know about yet – and still, He counted us worth dying for. (Romans 5:8) Incredible.

Scripture also reminds us that He is our righteousness, our sanctification, our redemption. These aren’t works we have ever been (or ever will be) able to do on our own. We can do NOTHING apart from Jesus, including living for Him! We need Him. Truth He has known along. (1 Corinthians 1:26-31; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Ephesians 2:8-9; John 15:4-5)

Jesus isn’t done with you. 

You may feel done with you, but Jesus isn’t.

Scripture tells us God has a plan in place to continually shape our hearts and lives to look more and more like Jesus. (Romans 8:29) It’s a work He promises to bring to completion. (Philippians 1:6)

God also tells us to be anxious for nothing – not even over these places where we’re so desperate to be different – but to instead keep thanking Him for what He has done, letting His peace settle in deep as we prayerfully choose to believe He still loves us and He’s still working. (Philippians 4:6-7)

And we can’t forget Jesus’ reminder to stay connected to Him, to abide in Him, to obey Him, and trust in Him. If Jesus was afraid of growing tired of us, He never would have offered to abide with us. He is now and forever willing to be our Vine. (John 15:1-17) He is the well our need can never run dry.

Jesus isn’t ashamed to call you His own.

“Both the one who makes people holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters.” Hebrews 2:11

Goodness gracious, I love this verse and this truth! It’s a Scriptural fact we can let sink in and undo every slimy lie from the pit of hell that has told us otherwise.

Rub this in DEEP, sweet friend… Jesus is not ashamed! He’s not ashamed to be seen with you. He’s not ashamed to have you in His family. He’s not ashamed to wrap His arms around you. He’s not pulling back from you because He keeps thinking about how much you need to clean yourself up. He intimately and fully knows the mess He found you in and the messes currently residing within you, and still He delights in getting to call you His own.

I know how frustrating this can all feel. This slow pace of growth. But we don’t have to be fearful today about whether or not we’re going to be different tomorrow. We can simply be present and grateful for the slow, steady, beautiful work Jesus is doing within us. We can ask Him to help us fully participate and cooperate with that work today. And if we take an honest look back at how far He’s brought us? I think we’ll be surprised by how much progress we’ve actually made.

Jesus knew what He was getting into when He first chose us to be His. And I don’t think He regrets His decision. Not for one single second. And even if by some chance you and I turn out to be some of His toughest cases? I believe Jesus wants us to know we’re still not too much for Him.

Jesus isn’t shocked by you. He isn’t done with you. And He most definitely isn’t ashamed to call you His own.

Keep trusting in His love, friend,

3 Things We Can Do When Life Hits Like an Emergency

I’ll never forget the day when I had to call the paramedics for my mom. She had a terrible fall several years ago – gashing her forehead and finding herself deeply confused and disoriented.

It was the beginning of one of the most difficult and scary seasons of our lives. (I thank God and marvel to this day that she is still with us and doing so well.)

But God gave me a powerful reminder that specific day that I would need throughout the coming months. Wisdom I still think of to this day. Hope directly connected to what happens when you call 911 during an emergency.

They keep you talking. Until they know help has reached you, the EMS dispatchers keep the conversation going. Not only does this help them assess the situation, but it also helps keep you focused and calm.

And this is what we need to do when life hits like an emergency.

We need to keep talking.

1 – Keep talking to God. Pouring out our prayers. Pouring out our hearts. Pouring out every thought, fear, and emotion.

2 – Keep talking to wise, godly people. Talking to people who have been where we are. Talking to the ones we know will always point us back to hope. Talking openly and honestly to someone we know we can trust.

And …

3 – Keep talking to ourselves. Preaching truth to our own hearts. Speaking Scripture out loud so our ears can hear it and our souls can receive it. Getting loud if we have to so we can drown out the voice of the Enemy.

We need to keep talking while help is coming. Because it is. Help is coming.

I could not SEE that help was on its way that day with my mom. But it was. As soon as I asked for it, things were set in motion to release the help we needed. The ambulance was already set up and ready to go. We just needed to call.

And oh, friend… I know you can’t see it yet, but as soon as you cried out to God, things were set in motion. The provision He already had ready was sent on its way. I can’t promise you it will show up exactly how you want or as early as you want. I can’t even promise it will look like what you’re expecting. But help is coming.

And those sirens on an ambulance? They don’t just signal for people to get out of the way because there is an emergency. They let the person waiting know help is almost there.

So this is what I’m praying for you today… that you’ll keep talking. That you’ll trust help is coming. And that your ears will catch the sound of the hope headed your way.

If you haven’t heard TobyMac’s new song “Help Is On the Way,” I’ll link to it here. Listening to this song is what inspired me to finally sit down and write this post that has been stirring in my heart for years.

I’m not saying any of this will be easy or pain-free. We still had to walk through the hard not only of that day with my mom, but the many days that came afterwards. But He provided for us and helped us during that season in ways that still humble and amaze me. Even in the midst of our pain, God is good. And we can rest assured in the knowledge that He is a God of provision. A God who loves us.

Wherever you are crying out from today, He sees you. He hears you. And He knows how to best help you.

Keep hanging on, friend. Keep talking. His help is on the way.

{Psalm 40:1-3; Psalm 116:1-9}

Love & Prayers,

When It Feels Like God Is Keeping Things From You

Sometimes it’s hard not to feel a bit confused and frustrated by God’s ways. Maybe even hurt. When we tentatively hold out our dreams and desires and ideas to the One who can make them come to pass in an instant, only to be met with “wait” and “not yet” and sometimes even a deeply painful “no.”

But instead of feeling slighted by God because He seems to be “keeping” something from us, what if we chose to feel loved by Him?

It’s truth that washed over me as I sat with Psalm 121:

“I lift up my eyes to the hills.
From where does my help come?
My help comes from the LORD,
who made heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved;
he who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, he who keeps Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
The LORD is your keeper;
the LORD is your shade on your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
nor the moon by night.
The LORD will keep you from all evil;
he will keep your life.
The LORD will keep
your going out and your coming in
from this time forth and forevermore.”

And it’s that word that shows up in some form five times. God’s reminder to us over and over and over again in this passage that He keeps us.

He is our Keeper.

As tender as that is to think about, I have to realize there are going to be times when being kept safe by Him means He’s going to need to keep some things from me. Things I may desperately want but that He knows aren’t best. Or that it’s just not time. Or that they truly aren’t safe or wise in the long run.

Is it still hard in the waiting and surrendering? Yes. Does that mean we have to stop asking and praying? Only if we feel Him firmly but oh so tenderly impressing on us that He wants us to let it go.

And this is where trust comes in. This is when peace offers to surround us, seep into us, and settle us down to our bones. When we choose to remember that our God sees things we don’t see and knows things we don’t know and loves us beyond what we can ever comprehend.

We are seen by Him. Loved by Him. Safe in His care.

He is our Keeper. Our good Father. Our beautiful and abundant portion.

Oh, that we would want Him more than anything we feel like He is keeping from us today.

“The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup;
you hold my lot.
The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.” Psalm 16:5-6

Let’s keep trusting Him, friends. Let’s keep delighting in Him.

The God Who Started a Good Work in My Children Is Able to Complete That Good Work

I don’t know how you feel like you’ve done when it comes to passing your faith on to your children.

I know it can feel overwhelming and confusing at times. I imagine, like me, you sometimes wonder if you’ve done enough. Especially as our kids start getting ridiculously close to being full-blown adults out on their own.

But I bet you’ve planted more seeds than you realize – with the prayers you’ve prayed, with the ways both quiet and bold you’ve chosen the ways of Jesus, with your Bible sitting out open, with your hands lifted or your tears falling as you worship Him at church or in the middle of an ordinary day.

And I want to encourage you with a passage of Scripture the Lord used to encourage me recently. Words that remind me it’s not all on me. That their faith doesn’t rest on 20ish years of me getting it all in and getting it all right and that’s the only hope they have.

In 2 Timothy 1:5-14, we read that faith was passed down from Lois to Eunice to Timothy – flowing from grandmother to mother to grandson. But family wasn’t the end of Timothy’s faith story. Then the Lord sent him Paul, the apostle addressing him in this letter. In Paul, Timothy had someone to spur him on in his faith and his calling. Someone to remind him of truth. Someone to call him out and up to more. Someone with faith Timothy could emulate.

Lois and Eunice had done their best to sow into Timothy for years upon years. And then the God who promised to complete the good work HE began in Timothy brought Paul into his life. (Philippians 1:6)
And I can’t tell you how much I love this. The God who began a good work in my girls? He knows how to complete that good work. He knows who to send their way and when.

Paul reminds Timothy in this letter to “hold fast the pattern of sound words” which he heard from Paul. The word for sound in Greek used here means: “to have sound health; i.e. be well (in body); figuratively, to be uncorrupt (true in doctrine): – be in health; (be safe and) sound, (be) whole(-some).” And to this, my heart says, “Yes, Lord! Send sound people with sound voices and sound theology into my girls’ lives.”

Maybe you’re fretting today about where your children are with Christ. Perhaps you feel shaky in your faith, and so you worry about what you’re passing on. Sweet friend, I get it. But God is able to complete the good work He began in us AND the good work He began in our people. And today, we can pray that He will send them Pauls.

This is my prayer. I know your story is different from mine, so feel free to make it your own. Pray it for your tiny people. For your teens. For your fully-grown adults. You can even write a prayer for yourself. ❤️

Father God, thank You for my parents and my grandparents who made sure I heard about You from a young age. I’m so thankful they helped me meet You. And I thank You for the faith-filled people You have continued to bring into my life over the years that have shaped and sharpened me. People who have even helped prepare me for the high calling of parenting and pointing young hearts to You. I confess I needed this reminder that it doesn’t all rest on me. I can trust that You will complete the good work You began in my children. And I’m asking You today to bring “Pauls” into their lives, Father. Bring them mentors, friends, and teachers who will see the gifts You’ve placed in them and call those things out. People who already walk by faith in strong, solid ways they can learn from. Word-fed, Spirit-led people of wisdom and grace who are firmly rooted and growing in Truth. People who will help my children grow in ways that perhaps I can’t as a mom. People who will love them, pray from them, and help shape and sharpen them. People who won’t let them settle for less than Your best. People who will help them be brave. People who will equip and encourage them to live true to the Gospel, true to Your calling on their lives, and true to You – helping them know beyond a shadow of a doubt they are loved by You and safe in You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

May we continue to trust that the God who began a good work in our children is able to complete that good work in our children. And may our children abide in Him and surrender to His holy work in them.

Love & prayers, friends,