mountain moving & other heavy lifting

sometimes my mountains do get moved, but more often than not, I have to climb them.  And I get to wondering why that is?  It would be so much quicker, so much easier, if God would just move them, preferably into the sea but anywhere away from me would be just fine.  Anywhere where I no longer have to face that particular mountain anymore.

But then I got to thinking  . . .    as parents do we always remove the mountains from our children’s paths, making it easier for them and sparing them whatever difficulties dealing with the mountain would bring them?  If we do, how will they ever learn the skill of mountain climbing?  (they won’t)

Maybe that’s why my Heavenly Father leaves my mountains right where they are – in my face and in my way.  He knows I need to learn to climb them.  Mountain climbing is hard work, slow work, difficult work; it is often painful and uncertain. It’s a step at a time kind of walk.  And it’s uphill all the way!  Kind of like the walk of faith that God wants for me each day.

It’s in the climbing that I learn the lessons God knows I need to learn.  The answers are not at the top, they are discovered along the way.  In the climbing I grow stronger because I have to exert effort with every step to push forward in order to reach the summit.  If my mountain was moved for me, nothing would be required of me and I would remain unchanged.

When my next mountain appears, as they inevitably do, I will not be prepared to climb it.  That was the purpose of the first mountain.  Climbing it would have prepared me to face this one.  And I would have had the memory of the previous summit experience to encourage me, to remind me what is waiting for me at the top.

At the top?  A breathtaking  view, a new perspective, a moment of joy, satisfaction and rest – followed all too quickly by the descent.  Equally challenging in its’ own way, the descent brings us down to level ground.  But level doesn’t last in topography or in life.  The next mountain is lying in wait.

The time spent climbing is long, time at the summit is short.  But usually it is the summit we remember, the summit is where we take the picture.  We want to forget the pain of the path that brought us to our summit.  We want to remember that moment of joy, not the months or more of mundane moving step by step toward the top.

Sometimes my little mustard seed isn’t enough to move my mountain.  Or maybe climbing my mountain is what grows my mustard seed?  Either way it’s faith. Faith that moves the mountains, faith that climbs them.  Faith to walk, faith to climb, faith to follow where Jesus leads.

“For we walk by faith, not by sight.”  (2 Corinthians 5:7)

“for everyone born of God overcomes the world.  This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.”   (1 John 5:4)

sincerely,        Grace Day



big trucks and strange men

these are things that don’t bode well in my book and yet I experienced both today. On my morning walk I come across four very large, very neon bright, very orange letters painted on the concrete path.  These four large letters, “BUMP”, are impossible to miss or to ignore.  Every day they faithfully remind me of the impending hazard or danger which awaits me if I continue to walk forward, passing over them, despite their warning that I will indeed encounter a “bump” if I keep going.  (I take my chances everyday)

I never trip or fall at this particular place in my walk because I have been given a heads up, as it were.  I know what to expect and I adjust my stride accordingly. Not so today though.  I did not receive any kind of a heads up regarding big trucks and strange men.  So imagine my surprise when I returned from an errand to find my normally quiet cul de sac filled with really big trucks and machinery and many strange men wearing bright neon yellow-green vests with orange stripes and colorful hardhats to complete their ensembles.

They were happily, busily digging in my front yard when I arrived home, which didn’t bode well at all.  I was right to feel that way.  As I pulled into my driveway I expected my garage door to rise, letting me in.  But it remained shut.  Was my opener needing a new battery? Then I realized the truth.  My power was out.  The fact that the strange, brightly colored, very busy men were digging up the box in my front yard that contained that kind of electrical connection power stuff, should have been my first clue.  (I guess I was momentarily distracted by the extravagantly bright and glowing hue of their work attire – their neon vests)

I had groceries in my car that needed to go into my now non-running refrigerator. Did I mention it was a 90 degree day?  Had I been given advance notice that I would be without power for an undetermined period of time, I would have planned differently for sure.  I would have adjusted my stride, as I do when I see the BUMP greeting (warning) on my walk each morning.

But as with little things like this and bigger things also, we don’t always get a BUMP notice before we hit that rough patch in our road.  And some patches are much rougher than others.  They will take us by surprise, halting our forward progress, taking the wind out of our sails and our lungs, driving us to our knees. But  it is from our knees that we find our way back up again.

Just like today, I may be surprised by a particular turn of events.  But nothing takes my Heavenly Father by surprise.  I have that assurance.  “I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come.”  (Isaiah 46:10)

“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.”  (Revelation 22:13)

Come to think of it, 1 Peter 4:12-13 is a kind of a BUMP warning to me.  “Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. (ok, I thought the men and the big trucks were strange)  But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when His glory is revealed.”

No matter how many unannounced “bumps” still lie ahead for me on the road I travel – I have this promise.  “And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.”  (1 Peter 5:10)

And I have this promise, “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are Mine.  When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.  When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” (Isaiah 43:1-2)

that’s reassurance enough for me!  through all the unannounced BUMPs still in my future, my Heavenly Father will be with me.  I don’t need to walk in fear.  I don’t need to live in fear.

sincerely,          Grace Day





the soul food diet

There are all kinds of diets out there to choose from.  Just turn on the TV or open a magazine and you are presented with seemingly infinite alternatives, each purporting to be the diet that finally works, the diet to end all diets.  There are protein diets, diets that cut out carbs or sugar, diets that promise fast results, miraculous results, lasting results.  I just have to buy their products and follow their guidelines.

I personally think I would prefer the dessert diet, (all desserts-all the time) or my personal favorite, the comfort food diet.  Let’s face it, we don’t call it comfort food for nothing,  it tastes really good.  (I’m thinking of mac & cheese or mashed potatoes or milkshakes)  But we all have our own favorites.

It’s hard to choose a diet because the “experts” keep changing their minds about what is good for us and what is not so good.  Remember the original food pyramid? Apparently it is no longer.  It’s been revised, turned upside down, maybe even cast out in the clamor to be cutting edge and politically correct.  Who would have thought diets were involved with politics?

Super foods come and go like celebrities.  They are in today, out tomorrow.  What was bad for you is now good for you again.  Remember eggs?  Remember coffee? Remember butter and even (surprise) real sugar?  I think I just heard a recent report on the news that antioxidants aren’t all powerful, all magical after all.  Add antioxidant to any food label and you make it a must have.  (well until this most recent research becomes more well known).

Food sustains us, it keeps us alive.  But we demand more of our food than just sustenance, we want it to taste good, to make us healthy and strong, to give us energy for everyday and to help us live longer.  Food also binds us together in community as we break bread together.  We share our lives as we share a meal.

New “superfoods” are discovered almost daily it seems.  They promise to give us more energy, to make us feel better, to heal our diseases and to increase our life span.  To that end I think I have found the perfect food, soul food.  This food tastes good, is deeply satisfying, is totally nutritious, provides strength and energy for each day, heals my hurts and cures my infirmities, is completely sustaining and ultimately life giving.  All this and it’s low cal too.

No wonder Jesus said, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ”  (Matthew 4:4)

Moses knew the sustaining power of God’s words.  He had received words from God on Mt. Sinai which he shared with his fellow Israelites, telling them, “They are not just idle words for you – they are your life.  By them you will live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to possess.”  (Deuteronomy 32:47)

Proverbs 4:21-22 says of God’s words, “Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; for they are life to those who find them and health to a man’s whole body.”  (God’s word is health food!)

In Ezekiel 3:3 I read, “Then he said to me, ‘Son of man, eat this scroll I am giving you and fill your stomach with it.’  So I ate it, and it tasted as sweet as honey in my mouth.”   (good to know, I have a sweet tooth)  the scroll would have been full of God’s words, another reminder that God’s word can and does both fill and sustain me.

“When Your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear Your name, O Lord God Almighty.”  (Jeremiah 15:16)  talk about your “heart healthy” diet, I think this qualifies!

“How sweet are Your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!”  (Psalm 119:103)  no wonder I love this “soul food diet”, me being a dessert girl and all . . .

“I have hidden Your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.”  (Psalm 119:11)   God’s word is the protection I need, it gives me the power to live pleasing to my Heavenly Father and guards my heart from attacks of the enemy.  (pun intended)

“For the word of God is living and active.  Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”  (Hebrews 4:12)  this is good to know, I don’t want to be eating outdated, expired food.  But God’s word is always current, the “active ingredients” still viable today.  And talk about your detox diet.  Sounds like God’s word will surgically expose and remove what needs to go from my heart, keeping my heart healthy and not clogged up with hate, bitterness or other toxic things that would otherwise build up over time.

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”  (2 Timothy 3:16-17)  “The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple.”  (Psalm 19:7b)  God’s word is brain food!  It teaches and trains me and gives me wisdom.

“The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul.”  (Psalm 19:7)  God’s word is like an energy drink,  enabling me to finish this race we call life.

“The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever.”  (Isaiah 40:8)  “Your word, O Lord, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens.”  (Psalm 119:89)  I don’t have to worry about famine or short supply with my “soul food diet”, it will always be available to me and will always fill me up.

Lord  you said, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”  (Matthew 5:6)  My soul food diet does fill me up.  God’s words fill me with joy, with wisdom, with encouragement, with comfort, with peace, with hope, with healing, with health and ultimately with eternal life. Guess I’ll stick with a winner.

Again today I will “Taste and see that the Lord is good;”  (Psalm 34:8)  Won’t you join me, dear readers?  this soul food diet is the best one I’ve found yet; it tastes good and is good for me at the same time.  (Usually when something tastes really good I find out that it is equally bad for me, the relationship seems to be inversely proportional)

but not with the soul food diet.  God’s word is health food, it is brain food, it is energy food, it is comfort food, it is food for my soul.  It is heart healthy, good for detoxing and it increases my immunity, guarding my heart and my mind, by providing me protection from the deadly diseases carried by this world’s deceits.   God’s word is the fuel that sustains me in the furnace, the fuel that keeps me running in life’s race.  (reading God’s word is me carb loading for the marathon I run each day, so that I will “run and not grow weary” (Isaiah 40:31))  I think I’ll continue with my soul food diet.  It provides me everything I need in abundance.

“The eyes of all look to You, and You give them their food at the proper time.  You open Your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing.”  (Psalm 145:15-16)

sincerely,          Grace Day









shake off the dust

that’s what Jesus told His disciples to do in Matthew 10:14, “If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake the dust off your feet when you leave that home or town.”  In other words, when you are rejected, when you fail, “shake the dust off your feet.”

To me, having clean feet symbolizes having a fresh start, a new beginning, a clean slate – reminding me of God’s mercies, which are “new every morning.”  I don’t have to bring the dirt from where I’ve been into the new place where I am going. That would only serve to muddy the waters in my new place right from the start.

Jesus disciples were traveling long distances on foot over dirty, dusty roads.  Over time the dust would began to accumulate; dirt becoming mud, building up with the miles on their feet, sticking to them – a reminder of all the places they had been.  Jesus didn’t want them to carry reminders of their past rejections with them into their new destinations.  And so He commanded them, “shake the dust off your feet when you leave.”   Travel light!

Rejections, failures, disappointments, like dust, can accumulate over time and if not washed off will build up, becoming a heavy load to carry that only increases as time passes.  Unless we realize we have already been given permission to “shake the dust off” of our feet.  I have been invited to lay down my heavy load and instead to take up my cross and follow Him whose yoke is easy and whose burden is light.

Imagine such a trade – dust for a cross?  Which would I rather carry?  Dust which seems so light, so scattered, so unsubstantial, or a heavy wooden cross?  But the truth is – the weight of the cross is lighter by far than the weight of the dust; the dust that appears so deceptively light even as it clings to me, weighing me down as it accumulates over time, layer upon layer, with every mile I travel in this life. Unless  . . .

Unless what?  Unless I shake the dust off my feet and shake it off often.  But I need more.  I need done for me what Jesus did for His disciples before they all ate the last supper together.  Jesus washed the feet of His disciples.  He knew they would need a clean slate, a fresh start to be able to carry on His work after His resurrection and ascension into heaven.  Or maybe He knew they needed any and all previous burdens of dust (sin, failure, defeat, the “dust” of this world) removed before they faced the more immediate events of His trial, crucifixion and burial.

And so Jesus washed their feet.  I don’t want to make the mistake Peter did at first, not wanting Jesus to wash his feet.  But Jesus said to him, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with Me.”  (John 13:8)  I cannot clean myself up, I need a Savior to do for me what I do not have the power to do for myself.

” ‘Come now, let us reason together,’ says the Lord.  ‘Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.’ ”  (Isaiah 1:18)

“Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.”  (Psalm 51:7)

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify (cleanse) us from all unrighteousness.”  (1 John 1:9)

Just as Jesus washed the feet of the disciples clean, ridding them of the accumulated dust and dirt from the day;  Jesus will likewise clean away my accumulated dust and dirt by forgiving my sins when I ask Him.  I don’t have to carry the dust of this world with me on my journey; the dust from the roads I travel and have traveled; the dust that so silently seeps in and settles oh so subtly on my soul, blocking out the light of Christ’s love and life – leaving me in darkness. I just have to carry my cross – that’s all.

That’s all Jesus asks me to carry.  He is the washer of my feet, giving me a clean slate, giving me a new beginning every morning because of His limitless mercy.

I ask Him to “Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.   . . . Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:2 & 10)

Jesus commands me to shake off the dust, so that is just what I will do.  Shake off the dust, take up my cross and follow Him.

sincerely,                Grace Day






Q & A

“What do you want Me to do for you?”  This is the question Jesus asked of James and John in Mark 10.  This is the question Jesus asked of Bartimaeus, the blind beggar, when Bartimaeus called out to Him as He passed by.  Bartimaeus’s answer was quick to come, he knew what he wanted, what he needed.  “Rabbi, I want to see.”  he replied.  Jesus granted his request and with it so much more, I suspect.

How would I answer this same question if Jesus asked it of me?  What do I want Jesus to do for me?  Do I even know where to start?  Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner.  Convict me, forgive my sins, clean me from all unrighteousness, and adopt me – make me Your child.  Set my feet on level ground and direct my paths.  Search me and know me, take away my heart of stone and give me a heart of flesh.  Give me a good soil heart ready to receive Your word.

Lord, I want you to rescue me, from myself and if necessary from my enemies.  I want you to redeem me, to restore me, to renew me and to reconcile me to You and to others.  I want You to give me hope and a future, meaning and purpose.  I want You to fill me with Your Holy Spirit, to walk with me.  I want You to take hold of my right hand.  I want You to SHOW ME YOUR GLORY.  (didn’t Moses dare to ask that of You?)   Moses didn’t want to go anywhere that You did not go with him and neither do I.

Make me bold.  Make me joyful, thankful, compassionate and merciful.  Make my scarlet sins as white as snow.  Clean me with hyssop and give me a pure heart. Search out any wicked ways in me and remove them.  Make me more like You, Jesus.  Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and give me rest for my soul.  And SHOW ME YOUR GLORY.

When I suffer, make me strong, firm and steadfast.  Lord, make Your grace abound to me so that in all things at all times I have all that I need to abound in the work You have for me to do.  Teach me Your ways and give me an undivided heart.  Put Your laws in my mind, write Your laws on my heart.  Guide me in Your truth and lead me in the way everlasting.  Walk with me.  Promise me You will never leave me nor forsake me.  and SHOW ME YOUR GLORY.

When I am weary, make me strong.  I want You to hide me beneath the shelter of Your wings or hide me in the cleft of the rock, like You did Moses.  Make me lie down in green pastures, lead me beside still waters.  Restore my soul, renew my faith.  Grant that I will soar on wings like eagles, let me run and not be weary, let me walk with You and not grow faint.  Let me hear You calling my name, like You do each and every star.  Grant me a glimpse through the glass.  SHOW ME YOUR GLORY!

as I write this I am realizing, that God through Jesus, has already promised in His word to do everything that I have just asked of Him, and more!  And God keeps His promises.  “What I have said, that will I bring about;”  (Isaiah 46:11)

“Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever!  Amen.”  (Ephesians 3:20-21)

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.”  (Matthew 7:7-8)


sincerely,        Grace Day






the story of the stars

“Lift your eyes and look to the heavens:  Who created all these?  He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls them each by name.  Because of His great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing.”  (Isaiah 40:26)

I can’t begin to imagine the number of all the stars. Just in our own galaxy, the Milky Way, there are estimated to be over two hundred billion stars and astronomers estimate over one hundred billion galaxies in the observable universe.  Those numbers are beyond comprehension.  We’re talking billions of galaxies with billions of stars in each galaxy.

And God calls them each by name!  Incredible!  Equally incredible, God calls me and every person who ever lived or will yet live upon this earth, by name as well.

Lord, You call me by name.  You bring me out of my darkness.  You fill me with Your pure, radiant, life-giving light.  You call me out by name and bid me shine for Your glory.  You sustain me.  Because of Your great power and mighty strength I am not missing!  You hold me in place.

It is Your power, not mine, that brings me out, Your power that sustains me in the place You chose for me, and it is Your light that shines out into the darkness. Because of Your faithfulness and infinite might, You call us each by name and not one of us goes missing.

“Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever.”  (Daniel 12:3)

“Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life – ”  (Philippians 2:14-16)

“He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.”  (Colossians 1:17)

sincerely,           Grace Day





encouragement = truth + hope

We all need to be encouraged from time to time; actually daily encouragement would be welcomed by most of us, I’m sure.  Encouragement usually takes the form of words spoken to us that are both complimentary and affirming, validating us in our choices and actions.  But if others tell me only what I want to hear, or what they think I want to hear, rather than the truth I need to hear, is that really encouragement?

Encouragement is necessary for the strengthening of our faith.  In Acts 14:21-22 we read that Paul and Barnabas were “strengthening the disciples by encouraging them to continue in the faith and by telling them, ‘It is necessary to pass through many troubles on our way into the kingdom of God.’ ”   Sounds more like a dire warning than encouragement, if you ask me.

But here’s the thing.  Encouragement tells the truth.  And here’s something else. Jesus prayed these words for us, “Father  . . .  Sanctify them by the truth; Your word is truth.”  (John 17:17)  So if I want to encourage a friend, I can trust that God’s word will get the job done because God’s word is truth and encouragement tells the truth.  Without truth, (the whole truth and nothing but the truth) words meant to encourage are hollow and devoid of any real power to strengthen anyone’s faith.

God’s word, however, is full of power.  “so is My word that goes out from My mouth: It will not return to Me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”  (Isaiah 55:11)

Now Paul and Barnabas were telling the disciples that they would have to “pass through many troubles” (ie. hardships, trials, suffering) not because they wanted to talk the disciples out of following after Jesus but because they wanted to encourage them to keep on believing in and following after Jesus.  So why the doom and gloom?

Taking a closer look at what they said, we see that the end is “on our way into the kingdom of God.”  Truth containing hope.  A happy ending.  The truth of God’s word is hope to whoever reads it.  God’s word is an encouragement to me because it tells me the truth and in so doing gives me hope.

Jesus said in John 16:33, ” . . . In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.”   this is truth full of hope.

“Therefore we do not lose heart.  Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.  For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”  (2 Corinthians 4:17)  again truth filled with hope which brings encouragement

” . . .  now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.  These have come so that your faith – of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire – may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.”  (1 Peter 1:6-7)  more truth & hope!

“And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.”  (1 Peter 5:10)   this is encouragement,  truth plus hope

Paul said, “That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.  For when I am weak, then I am strong.” Paul could say this because of Jesus’ words of encouragement to him, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.”  (2 Corinthians 12:10 & 9)

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”  (Psalm 23:4) truth- I will have to walk through some valleys;  hope – my Heavenly Father is always with me;   this encourages me and strengthens my faith during the times I spend in those dark, dangerous valleys

” ‘Come now, let us reason together’, says the Lord.  ‘Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.’ ”  (Isaiah 1:18)  truth – my sins have stained me;  hope – God provided a way to erase that stain when He sent Jesus

“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”  (John 3:16)  truth – God loves me;  hope – if I believe in Jesus, whom God sent, I have eternal life.  nothing could be more encouraging than this!

“Therefore encourage each other with these words.”  (1 Thessalonians 4:18)  we can and should encourage others, dear readers, with God’s words.

because encouragement = truth + hope and God’s word is full of both!

sincerely,         Grace Day











the search

I confess, I watch a lot of reruns of the TV show Law & Order.  So I feel like I know a lot about searches and searching in general.  Those detectives are always looking for clues to solve the crime and for evidence needed to convict those that carried out the crime.  But the detectives run into a lot of resistance when they try to carry out their searches.  The people don’t want their homes searched or their cars or to be searched themselves.  They are very uncooperative and the detectives always seem to be waiting on search warrants from the court, so that they can lawfully, legally search whoever or whatever they need to in order to bring the hidden facts to light.

The detectives need to uncover the truth.  The criminals need for the truth to remain covered, hidden safely out of sight where no one can see and know.  The criminals are hiding the truth in order to avoid being found guilty and punished for their crime.

Those Law & Order detectives would love King David who wrote this Psalm to God, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.  See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”  (Psalm 139:23-24)

Imagine that – David asks God to search his heart, he invites God in with the express purpose of knowing him and of testing him.  The Living Bible translation of verse 24 reads, “Point out anything You find in me that makes You sad,”.  David wanted to please God that much – enough to ask God to reveal what in him grieved his Creator.

In Psalm 26:2 David says, “Test me, O Lord, and try me, examine my heart and my mind;”    God does not need a search warrant or nor does He need permission because He is Omniscient and knows all things anyway.  “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight.  Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.”  (Hebrews 4:13)  But even so, David welcomes, actually invites God to search him and to know him.

Adam and Eve did just the opposite in the garden.  Long before David made his heartfelt plea to God, they hid from God, wanting to cover up what they had done in disobedience to their Creator.  Jonah did more than hide, he actually ran from God when he didn’t like the plans God had for him.  Jonah eventually figured out that no one can out run God.  There was a time when David, too, attempted to hide from God.  David wanted to hide what he had done from others as well as from God. David even went so far as to commit murder in order to cover up what he had done.  He wanted to keep his secret hidden.

David’s past actions make his request of God in Psalm 139 all the more surprising, all the more beautiful.  He was willing to be searched, to be exposed, to be known. That’s a risk not many of us are willing to take.  It is painful to be exposed to the light, to have things removed that need to be taken away.

But David was brave enough to cry out to God, “Have mercy on me, O God, according to Your unfailing love; according to Your great compassion blot out my transgressions.  Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.  . . . Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”  (Psalm 51:1-2 & 10)  That kind of heart surgery is painful – the washing away of whatever God finds offensive, (as David asked) no matter how desperately I want to hang onto it. And then the creating of the new heart, which only God can do.  Truly a miracle in any day and age.

That’s what David was consenting to, was asking God to do.  To search him with the idea of uncovering and removing anything in him that as he said, God found offensive or anything that made God sad.  David knew that only God could do this thing he asked.   He said to God, “Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.   . . .   Hide Your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity.”  (Psalm 51:7 & 9)

David was willing to be searched by God, willing to submit, willing to surrender to whatever God would need to do in order to clean his heart and restore him to right standing with God.

David’s end game was this desire of his,  “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in Your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.”  (Psalm 19:14)

That’s why he wanted God to search his heart.  May that be my prayer too.

sincerely,       Grace Day








chicken or egg???

one of those still unsolved mysteries which continue to be debated by inquiring minds or by people with too much time on their hands.  Either way, the debate continues  . . .

I think about this debate as I think about Sarah, Abraham’s wife, waiting on God to give her a child, the child He promised her – the heir He promised to give to Abraham.  So Sarah was waiting, hoping, trusting – and then she wasn’t.  Sarah was done waiting on God.  She decided to take matters into her own hands, to rely on her own wisdom and her own ways to bring about what she was no longer willing to wait on God to do.

“Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had borne him no children.   . . .   so she said to Abram, ‘The Lord has kept me from having children.  Go, sleep with my maidservant; perhaps I can build a family through her.’ ”   (Genesis 16:1-2)

And I began to wonder, which left Sarah first?  her hope or her trust?  When did her hope die?  Years were passing, she was continuing to get older.  Her circumstances were not changing, or if they were, they were changing for the worse.  She obviously had lost all hope that God’s promise would be fulfilled because she stopped waiting on Him.

She no longer trusted the One who had made the promise.  Was it when she stopped trusting that her hope died?  Or was it because all her hope was gone that she ceased to trust?  Which died first, her hope or her trust?

If I give up on something or on someone, have I lost hope?  hope that things will be better, different?  Why have I lost hope?  Is it because my circumstances have not changed (like Sarah’s) or have gotten worse?  Have I lost hope because I no longer trust that God is able or that He will change any situation or person in order to accomplish His good and eternal purposes?  When trust is gone, there is no reason for hope to remain.

“Jesus looked at them and said, ‘With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.’ ”    (Matthew 19:26)   Had Sarah quit believing those words?

Have I at times?  Do I trust God?  He is trustworthy.  But do I believe that?  He says in His word, “I am God, and there is none like Me.   . . .   I say:  My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.”    (Isaiah 46:9-10)   I just have to wait on Him. “Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” (Psalm 27:14)

It is while waiting that hoping, trusting and believing are put to the test.  When one of these goes, the other two follow.  If I stop believing then I no longer trust and if I no longer trust God then I have no reason to hope that He will keep any of His promises.  When Sarah stopped waiting on God, she stopped believing, she stopped trusting and she stopped hoping.

And yet, God kept His word in spite of this.  “Now the Lord was gracious to Sarah as He had said, and the Lord did for Sarah what He had promised.  Sarah became pregnant and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the very time God had promised him.”  (Genesis 21:1-2)    So the wait was worth it and it was God’s timing not Sarah’s that prevailed.

How often I grow weary in the waiting.  When I find myself hopeless, I must realize and admit that I have stopped trusting God, because as long as I am trusting God, I have a reason to hope.  Even though I may not know which one left me first, the other one will surely follow, because they exist together.  Trust in God allows me to hope and hope requires that I trust someone able to do all that they promise.

“We wait in hope for the Lord; He is our help and our shield.  In Him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in His holy name.”  (Psalm 33:20-21)

sincerely,       Grace Day








refugees in search of a home

I’ve been thinking about the statue of liberty and the words “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.  Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”  (Emma Lazarus  1849-1887)

We are all refugees looking for our home.  Some of us just may not realize this yet.  Adam and Eve were actually the first refugees.  Cast out, forced to leave behind the safety and perfection of their garden home, they became wanderers in search of a new home to replace the one they had lost.  And mankind has been lost and wandering ever since.

Continually searching for that elusive, permanent place to settle in and to call home is exhausting.  Jesus’ words of invitation sound so like Lady Liberty’s, “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)

Refugees today are seeking rest; rest from the burdens of oppression, poverty, disease, crime and lack of freedom to live their lives in peace and safety.  We all want a safe place we can call home.  Jesus knew what it was to be homeless.  “Jesus replied, ‘Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay His head.’ ”  (Luke 9:58)

Jesus knew what it was to be poor.  He said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”  and James states, “Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom He promised those who love Him?” (Matthew 5:3 & James 2:5)

Abraham lived as an alien while he followed where God led him.  Abimelech said to Abraham, “God is with you in everything you do.  Now swear to me here before God that you will not deal falsely with me or my children or my descendants. Show to me and the country where you are living as an alien the same kindness I have shown to you.”  (Genesis 21:22-23)

I, like Abraham, live my life as an alien here in this land.  Philippians 3:20 explains why this is so.  “But our citizenship is in heaven.  And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables Him to bring everything under His control, will transform our  lowly bodies so that they will be like His glorious body.”  Peter wrote to believers, “Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul.”  ( 1 Peter 2:11)

So I, too, am a refugee;  looking for, longing for – freedom and peace and security. Jesus holds out His hands, offering me all three.

” . . .  Jesus said, ‘If you hold to My teaching, you are really My disciples.  Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’  . . .  Jesus replied, ‘I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.  Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever.  So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.’ ”  (John 8:31-36)

“because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.”   (Romans 8:2)

“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give you.  I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”  (John 14:27)

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”  (Philippians 4:6-7)

“Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.”  (2 Corinthians 5:5)

“But the plans of the Lord stand firm forever, the purposes of His heart through all generations.”  (Psalm 33:11)

“I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of My hand.”   that’s security   (John 10:28)

As a refugee, wanting to flee the famine, the violence, the suffering, the losses of this life – I long for that safe place to call home.  “Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands.”  (2 Corinthians 5:1)

Our world is full of refugees in search of a home.  My home is being made ready for me, but in the meantime I must live like Abraham, as an alien in a land not my own.

Jesus said, “Do not let your hearts be troubled.  Trust in God; trust also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you.  I am going there to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with Me that you also may be where I am.” (John 14:1-3)

sincerely,                  Grace Day