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  • OUR RESPONSE TO LAWLESSNESS
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    by Pastor Ray Thomann, Hope is Alive Ministries

     

    One of the devil's most important strategies is to completely destroy the Biblical foundation of

    our nation. Without a moral compass to guide a people, everything becomes subjective. This

    deadly and destructive game plan is being waged through a culture war that seeks to redefine

    lies as truths.

     

    By falsely claiming a desire for equality, civil rights and love for fellow man (who wouldn't want

    this), evil has effectively disguised its true intentions. Through the use of political correctness,

    social justice and the rules of radicals; the minions of darkness have launched a relentless

    attack on the character, freedom and finances of those who oppose them. They have also

    used indoctrination practices within the public school system and the institutes of 'higher

    education' to pollute the mind of this generation's children.

     

    What is taking place in our nation is a spiritual battle that has grave consequences. This is a

    war for the souls of men.

     

    For many years, I have addressed the American Churches' role in the state of putrification

    taking place in our nation. Christians in general, have remained relatively silent over many

    decades as the progressive culture launched an all out attack on the infallible word of God.

    With that being said, the point of this blog is not to address the state of the church. Rather, it's

    to address a question that is of great concern to those whose eyes are open to the truth.

    In the past few years, we have witnessed the assault on the Biblical definition of marriage and

    the redefining of the basic definitions of what it is to be a man or a woman. Popular opinion

    and worldview seem to be aligning with the fallible wisdom of men. This is our Isaiah 5:20

    moment.

     

    What I've come to understand is that many Christians are confused and overwhelmed by

    what is taking place in our country. They seek guidance as to their response to the

    destruction of the moral foundation. 

     

    “If the foundations are destroyed, what can the righteous do?” - Psalm 11:3

     

    To respond to this concern, we must first remember what Jesus told us. He said there would

    be a time in which lawlessness will abound and that the love of many would grow cold (Matt.

    24:12). 

     

    So how are we to move forward in these challenging times; shielding our hearts from growing

    cold?

     

    • Control our anger. It's easy for one to grow angry with all we are facing. However, we

    must remember that anger only leads to coldness.

    • Opportunity. Jesus' is calling us to rise and shine. We have been given an opportunity

    to share the Good News of Jesus with the lost in fulfillment of His Great Commission.

    • Grow our relationship with Jesus. By growing our relationship with Jesus, seeking Him

    in all things and at all times, our faith is strengthened and our love for our enemies will

    increase.

    • Prayer. Continue in fervent prayer for one another, the nation and those who are lost.

    • Demonstrate the love and compassion of Yeshua. It's hard to love those who seek to

    destroy us. But that's exactly what Jesus did. By abiding in His word and focusing

    upon Him, He will fill us with His love and compassion for our fellow man.

    • Maintaining a healthy, holy fear of God. To love our God more than we fear man.

     

     

    Written on Tuesday, 03 May 2016 00:00 in Guest Author/Blogger No comment Read 229 times
NancyI hope you enjoy my blog posts as well as visiting some links to other great sites.
  • Tell Your Heart to Beat Again
    Written by

     

     

     

     

     

    Greetings!

    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

    Beginning
    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 ©

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJTnjac7mhc  

     

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

    Nancy

     

     

    Written on Thursday, 16 June 2016 00:00 in Blog 4 comments Read 149 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 2 comments Read 277 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 1 comment Read 425 times
  • A Little Rain Must Fall
    Written by

    In this world you will have trouble, but take heart! I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)

     

    Into every life, a little rain must fall.  Sometimes it’s considerably more than a little. Sometimes it’s a flood. We can always quote happy scripture promises when things are going well, but when the deluge crashes in, it’s a bit harder to let those easy verses roll off our tongues.

     

    This week I’ve had prayer requests from people I love that are seriously painful events:

    One’s pastor fell and broke his leg in three places, requiring surgery. One’s husband’s memory problems got extremely worse and he had to be admitted to an Alzheimer’s facility. One’s son was killed in a tragic car crash. One’s daughter rebelled and ran off to marry against the family’s wishes. One who is ready to reconcile a troubled marriage doesn’t have the support of her family. One’s teenage niece is missing for a week now and no one has a trace of an idea where she might be. One suffers a debilitating disease that robs her of fulfilling her calling. I could probably list more, but my point is that many, many folks are struggling right now with issues that are far from easy.

     

    I want to thank all of you who have loved us and prayed for my husband and me these past months. God does truly have a purpose in all things. Sometimes we can’t identify what that purpose is, but it doesn’t negate the fact that He is working behind the scenes. I already can see things in me that have surfaced that are not good.  I’ve confessed and repented and realized places where my heart needs cleansing. He is teaching me many things about myself. He is also showing Himself to my husband in different ways.

     

    When your storm is raging, find ways to remind yourself to stop, breathe, and step back. It’s necessary to not react, but to look up, call out to Jesus and let Him take over. I fully realize that several times when I over-reacted in distress, I totally flunked a test---and so yes, I got to take it over till I passed!! This process of refining is a good thing. It doesn’t always feel good, but no discipline ever does.  

     

    I talk a lot about resting in God. Resting in Him means you stand firm against panic attacks, despair or hopelessness. It means you trust God to the point that whatever the outcome, you can be at peace. It is possible. It might not be spontaneous, (and we wish it was), but if you allow Him into your situation, and you trust Him completely, you actually can rest and find peace in the midst of the storm. God is in control. We can become angry with Him for not answering our prayers the way we want, but if we truly believe He is sovereign and omniscient and omnipotent, how can we stay stressed?

     

    I wish I could have miracles to pour out on your situation. I would gladly do it, and quickly. But more importantly, my prayer for you would be that you could trust God so fully that you sigh a deep cleansing sigh, look up and trust that He has it covered and He knows best.

    That’s what I’m reminding myself each day. I still flunk some tests, but I’m doing better.

    Jesus said He has overcome the world. That’s quite a statement. As for me, I want to be fully attached inside and out to the One Who has overcome the world! I pray that for you too.

    Written on Saturday, 19 March 2016 00:00 in Blog No comment Read 388 times

Welcome to my website!

"Living in God's Rest...At Peace in a Chaotic World" and "Masked in Deceit," are both available now.  Living in God's Rest can be purchased from any of your favorite booksellers online or in stores.  Masked in Deceit, a novel, is available from Amazon.  Both 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.

 

Have a blessed day!
 - Nancy

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