The Only Thing God Remembers


One particular autumn morning at the onset of his junior high years, one of my sons (I won’t say which one) was going through a rebellious stage… Hard to believe, right? He was coming into his own, so to speak. Whether he was ‘trying’ to get my goat or not, I do not know, but he did!

He had mouthed off to me big time, and as I drove back home I was fuming… My irritation and frustration multiplied by eons, and retorts plummeted through the cosmic forces in my brain!! “Your father and I did not raise you to be like this! What is going on with you? Who are you anyway? Whose kid are you? And what did you do with my son?”

Oh, I had an entire list of questions for him after school that day…IF I decided to pick him up! Vindictively, I thought just maybe I would make him wait and worry for a while after football practice. “That will give him some time to re-think his words and actions toward his mother,’’ thought I!

Oh, I was angry, and anger always makes me physically productive, so I took to vehemently vacuuming the entire house. And was I ever going at it when the Lord reminded me of a day ‘way back when’ that I, too, mouthed off to my mother in the same exact way…in the car, on the way to school. Oops!

Humbled and convicted, I immediately turned off the vacuum cleaner, and called my mom… “Mom, I’m so sorry!”

Puzzled, she said, “For what???”

“For mouthing off to you when I was a teenager!”

“I don’t remember!” she said sincerely.

“Well, I do and I want you to know just how sorry I truly am.”

Bewildered, she said, “Oh, O.K. So how is everything?”

And the conversation moved on to our usual bits of catching up and chit-chat.

Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more. —Hebrews 10:17

Looking at the Bible as a whole, we learn there was a day when God did remember our sins…at the cross of Calvary. It was there that every one of our sins was atoned for. He is a just God and a price had to be paid, not somewhere or somehow, but by Someone. And that Someone is our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

So now, when we call on God through the blood sacrifice of Jesus Christ and confess our sin to Him – past, present, future, you name it – His response will always be, “I don’t remember!”

But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God… For by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy. —Hebrews 10:12 & 14

So since Jesus Christ sat down and rested, we too can rest in Him, knowing that through His sacrifice it truly is finished, and now and forevermore we are made perfect and holy in Him! And that, dear blogging friends, is the only thing our Heavenly Father remembers!

Thank You, LORD!!!

Hebrews 10:12, 14, 17 – NIV® Copyright 2000 by Biblica, Inc.®

©Celebrate His Love, 2018

Today’s Encouraging Thought…

Children find refuge in the arms of their Daddy’s…especially when their Daddy’s find their security in the LORD. Happy Father’s Day!


Ultimately, we all need Him to be our refuge… there is no greater security than to rest under the feathers of our Giant, Amazing, Magnificent, Loving God.

I hope you enjoy the heartfelt lyrics and beautiful pictures in today’s video offering. It’s an oldie but a goodie… You Are MY Refuge by the Maranatha Praise Band:

Thank You for the Pictures, Dad!


Dear Dad,
It has been nine years since God decided to move you from planet earth to your heavenly home, and not a day goes by that I don’t thank God for you!! I’m so glad you were a photographer and left me with so many amazing pictures…some in albums, so many still in boxes… Ugh! But even more than the tangible pictures, you left life-changing pictures of God and what He looks like! I will be ever grateful to Him for the gift you were and still are to me. So it’s Father’s Day, and I wanted to share a special album with you, Dad… This one took a little longer to develop…it took time!

You see, I never realized how good I had it when I was young. Though you were warm and affectionate, you never laid an inappropriate hand on me. Your love for me was pure, caring and gentle. When I long for your arms, I find myself running to my Heavenly Father like never before…and it is the picture you gave me of those loving comforting arms that helps God’s amazing love to be more tangible to me!

He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust; His truth shall be thy shield and buckler.  Psalm 91:4

So many pictures… I think of the love in your eyes every time you looked at me, how you laughed and how entertained you were by my silly dances and antics! Oh, and how we would dance together in stocking feet, with my feet on yours, and we’d laugh together!! I would look up at you into your big green eyes, and all I would see is you looking down at me with tenderness, love and joy!! And now, well now…I’m so sure my Heavenly Father laughs with me, sometimes joyfully at me, and oh, how we dance…together!!!

Yes, so many pictures… You were such a faithful provider for our family and you arrived home from work everyday at the exact same time. What a picture of the Lord’s provision and faithfulness! And realistically, I do remember your human limitations… you could fix ‘almost’ anything! So, since you are with Him now, I guess it’s OK to tell you, He beat you big-time on this one because HE can fix EVERYTHING!

This picture took a little more time to develop… As a kid, life did not always go the way I wanted it to, nor does it now. But you helped me with that as well by not always giving in and letting me have my own way. I was never happy at the time. My Heavenly Father is much the same, answering my requests and fixing things His way, in His time…which is always better than my way and time! I’m sure I never showed the least bit of appreciation as a kid, but I certainly do appreciate it now, so THANK YOU!!!

The most important picture… Though we always had enough, we were not wealthy by any stretch of the imagination. But you gave me something far better than anything money could buy… You gave me your presence! I remember one particular night when Mom was away at a baby shower and you were babysitting David and me. As you recall, my big brother was one to put himself to bed early. I, however, was a night owl and you let me stay up for a bit. After I had finally fallen asleep, probably in your arms, you set me on the couch in the living room. Thinking I’d be fine, you went down to the basement with Uncle George to develop pictures in your darkroom.

I don’t know if you knew this, but that corner of the basement where your darkroom was…well to me, that was the most horrifyingly scary and foreboding place on the entire planet. I never ventured down there alone because I knew some creepy, unworldly creature loomed behind that old broken down coal furnace that was right next to your darkroom! Plus, your darkroom was… well… DARK!

You may recall, I had an awful nightmare that night…the worst EVER! An elf with a pointed hat was doing summersaults on the living room carpet, laughing wickedly over and over again. I just knew he was out to get me! I woke up sobbing and more than petrified! Uncle George must have come up from the basement for some coffee or something because he was the one who heard me. He swept me up in his arms, comforted me and carried me down to the basement… Yes, to that scary, foreboding corner…to your DARK room! <Insert your own horror movie sound effects!>

Uncle George tapped on the darkroom door, you told him when it was safe to come in…as to not damage the developing process as I learned later. [Oh, how you would love digital photography!] He gently placed me in your strong, loving arms and you simply held me like you always did in the living room! Just being in your arms transformed that foreboding corner into the safest, most secure place in the entire world… All because you were there. You!

What a blessing that was to me and still is…because I came to know your heartbeat as I sat on your lap everyday in the living room, and I recognized it in the darkroom. The heartbeat of my faithful, loving father beat exactly the same in both places. I don’t even remember what happened after that. I just rested in your arms, probably fell asleep, and you carried me up to my bed where I slept peacefully for the rest of the night. You gave me peace.

Since you are with Jesus now, I am sure you know what a blessing that was to the little girl I was and the woman I am today. I have come to realize that life has many living room times and some darkroom times as well, and I need to sit on my Heavenly Father’s lap in the living room of everyday life…reading His Word, meditating upon it, talking to Him in prayer, and listening to His voice…building relationship…every day!

I need this for so many reasons! First, because He desires a relationship with me so much that He did all He could to make it so. He paid such a high price when He sent His only begotten Son to be a sacrifice for my sins! Like you, He has always given first and it cost Him everything important to Him.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.  John 3:16

Second, because though life is filled with many living room days, there are always going to be nightmares and darkroom moments. So as I learn His presence, His strength and His heartbeat in the living room of everyday life, it prepares me to recognize His heartbeat during those darkroom times. The heartbeat of my faithful, loving Heavenly Father beats exactly the same in both places. And I can rest in His loving arms, knowing that He will carry me back up to the living room again and again…in perfect peace!

And one final picture, Dad… You always came home. You were faithful to your marriage vows, to Mom, and to David and me. You never left…not for a bigger dream or a younger woman. And after we grew up and had families of our own, you were a faithful, loving father-in-law and grandfather…So much so that my husband felt he lost a dad when we lost you, and our sons still say you were the best grandfather ever! Steadfast faithfulness, every child and adult needs that in their lives. Such a picture of our Heavenly Father who said…

Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.  Hebrews 13:5

Though you had to leave us, Dad, thank you for the pictures…not just the ones you developed in the darkroom, but the ones you developed in my heart, the priceless pictures of my Heavenly Father who will never leave me or forsake me! I’m so thankful you are with Him and we will see each other again…for He will be with all of us even until the very end of the age. That is forever!

The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.”  Jeremiah 31:3

So Dad, Happy Father’s Day! I miss you more than words can ever say, but I am so grateful for the ‘pictures’ and the love-gift you were to me and all who read this letter.

I love you forever,
Your grateful daughter

Notes from the author:

Dear Dads,
I hope this letter helps you see that your simple devotion to your family is priceless. It’s not how much money you make or how many toys you buy, but who you are and how you live and love that really matters. Your sons will learn what kind of man to be and your daughters will learn what kind of man to marry. Children need a dad…and there is nothing you can give them that is more valuable than YOU. So if you ever feel you don’t make enough or work hard enough, just remember, YOU are enough. YOU are all they truly need. They will be blessed to have you!!!

Dear Daughters and Sons,
If you did not have a dad like mine… first, I am so sorry for that because every child deserves a loving father. But second, my sincere heart’s desire is that my story will somehow give you some tangible pictures that will help you know more fully how much your Heavenly Father truly does love you. Even though I had such a sweet and loving human daddy, I have learned since his passing that my Heavenly Father is a way better Dad than my dad ever was. He loves you with an everlasting love! You are worthy of His love and He sacrificed His only Son to tell you so! HE LOVES YOU!

And if you DID have a dad like mine, I hope you will share some of your stories as well because we can all use more ‘pictures’ of GOD!

God bless you all and Happy Father’s Day!

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
Psalm 91:4, John 3:16 King James Version (KJV) Crown Copyright in UK
Hebrews 13:5, Jeremiah 31:3 © 2011-2016 BIBLICA. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED WORLDWIDE
©Celebrate His Love, 2017

Hallelujah for the Cross

Recently I’ve read a few articles about Easter Saturday, and when something crosses my path more than once it is cause for pause. Easter Saturday…a dismal day in the life of the grieving apostles who had no idea they would soon be so amazed on Sunday…even though Jesus had told them He would rise again. And would we have been any different?

Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ ”  ~Luke‬ ‭24:6-7‬

Before the reminder, I’m pretty sure they were not singing ‘Hallelujah for the Cross’ that Saturday. And, I must admit, it is an odd day for us in the twenty-first century as well, even though we know about Sunday. But if anyone felt the full depth and thrust of that Saturday long ago, it was Jesus Himself. I’ve heard a few opinions addressing what Jesus did during that time, but for simplicity sake let’s just say it was the day in between…in between death and life.

What is in between? For us it is nothing, we are either fully alive or fully dead. However, we can be living and feel dead inside. Maybe you’re there today…only, as with the apostles, instead of feeling like one day, it seems like an eternity. A dream has died…you’ve lost your job, your family is falling apart, you’re falling apart, you’ve lost a loved one, your health is failing, you’ve fallen back into an addiction , your house is in foreclosure, the lease is up on your car, you have a wayward child, or maybe, just maybe you are lonelier than you’ve ever been in your whole life. Easter Saturday touches us all.

But then, oh yes then…we must not forget Easter Sunday! The stone rolled away, the grave clothes lay flat, the tomb is empty…our Savior is alive! This fact, and this fact alone, is what gets us through every Easter Saturday in our lives. Because He lives, we can put every broken dream into His most capable hands. We can trust Him with every person, problem and situation…our jobs, families, deepest grief, health, addictions, finances, possessions, wayward children, and yes, even our own loneliness.

When my dad – my earthly hero, my Superman – died, that Easter Saturday lasted quite a while…until one day when the God-side of the plan arose and shined forth. Through my very emptiness, The Father of all time revealed Himself to me in a whole new light. I had a wonderful earthly dad, and his loss left a huge void, but God is an AMAZING Father!!! And I have to say this…HE is a way better Dad than my earthly father could ever be. He has used the grief, the void, the emptiness to draw me closer to Himself…closer to Jesus…than ever before! And of course, it is that first Easter Sunday that offers us the hope of seeing our loved ones again, so I hold on to hope, I hold on to Jesus. Where else can I go?

Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.’ ~John‬ ‭6:68‬

As with Simon Peter, I have no need to look any further because the cross was not the end, nor was Easter Saturday…not then, not now. Easter Sunday is a REALITY! And we can truly thank and praise God for the cross, the tomb and Easter Saturday because we know what happened on Easter Sunday! In light of the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, our Living Savior, we can confidently say (and sing) “Hallelujah for the Cross!”

I hope you enjoy today’s video offering… Hallelujah for the Cross by the Newsboys…

Hallelujah for the Cross by The Newsboys (Lyrics)

Up to the hill of Calvary
My Savior went courageously
and there he bled and died for me
Hallelujah for the cross

And on that day the world was changed
A final, perfect lamb was slain
Let earth and heaven now proclaim
Hallelujah for the cross

Hallelujah for the war He fought
Love has won, death has lost
Hallelujah for the souls He bought
Hallelujah for the cross

What good I’ve done could never save
My debt too great for deeds to pay
But God, my Savior, made a way
Hallelujah for the cross

A slave to sin, my life was bound
But all my chains fell to the ground
When Jesus’ blood came flowing down
Hallelujah for the cross

Hallelujah, hallelujah
And when I breathe my final breath
I’ll have no need to fear that rest
This hope will guide me into death
Hallelujah for the cross

[Chorus x2]
Hallelujah for the cross
Hallelujah for the cross

All Scripture quoted from NIV® Copyright 2000 by Biblica, Inc.®

©Celebrate His Love, 2017


Palm Sunday, the subtle reminder that Easter Sunday – better referred to as Resurrection Day – is next week. Yesterday a lot of Christians commemorated Palm Sunday, the day of Jesus’ triumphal entrance into Jerusalem. Some handed out palm leaves…I even saw one little guy on his way home from church toying with some palms formed into the shape of an elaborately woven cross. Elaborate, a good word to describe what happened that day…

The next day the great crowd that had come for the festival heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem. They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, “Hosanna! ” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Blessed is the king of Israel!” ~John‬ ‭12:12-13‬

It was an elaborate display of passion and worship, and yet, less than a week later the same crowd passionately yelled “Crucify Him!” So what changed? We know it was not Jesus. So it had to be the hearts of the people. Jesus brought change, a new way of thinking…a ministry of love, compassion, grace and mercy that the keepers of the law did not exercise, nor understand.

If we think that living a moral life, doing what is right by our own standards, and loving people every day is going to earn us peace in this life and a place in heaven, we will be sorely disappointed… Not because there is anything wrong with any of that – believe me, those are all GREAT things – but we are fallible, we will never do it right 100% of the time. We (yes I!) mess up! And sometimes, to be frankly honest, I can do it BIG…a slip of the tongue, or should I say attitude? Insecurity? The old self? Oh my! 😱

Bottom line, we need a Savior, a Perfect, Flawless Sacrifice to take our place. We need someone who was successful at living the perfect life when our lives fail. We need mercy! We need grace! We need Jesus!

He came to take our place on the cross of suffering, the suffering we so deserved, knowing we could never ever accomplish perfection in ourselves. No matter how hard we try, no matter how hard we work, salvation always has been and always will be a free gift offered from the hand of the Father…the ultimate sacrifice of His One and Only Son.

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.  ~Romans‬ ‭6:23‬

As we get closer to the day we most commonly refer to as Easter Sunday, AND as we ponder the cross and the death, burial and resurrection of our Savior, AND as we contemplate all Jesus came to do for us, I plan to post a few songs that minister to my heart. Music has always had a powerful affect on my Christian walk and worship, and I sincerely hope these song choices will bless you as well.

Forever, sung by Kari Jobe, stood in the forefront today as I was pondering not only the short-lived worship the people of Jerusalem offered our Savior, but also my own weakness, and often short-lived spurts of righteousness. How thankful I am today that the love, faithfulness and righteousness of Jesus stands in deep and powerful contrast to our sin. And it was for this reason He came and overcame…for you and me…FOREVER!

Forever Lyrics
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Play “Forever”
on Amazon Music
The moon and stars they wept
The morning sun was dead
The Savior of the world was fallen
His body on the cross
His blood poured out for us
The weight of every curse upon him

One final breath He gave
As Heaven looked away
The Son of God was laid in darkness
A battle in the grave
The war on death was waged
The power of hell forever broken

The ground began to shake
The stone was rolled away
His perfect love could not be overcome
Now death where is your sting
Our resurrected King has rendered you defeated

Forever, He is glorified
Forever, He is lifted high
Forever, He is risen
He is alive
He is alive

The ground began to shake
The stone was rolled away
His perfect love could not be overcome
Now death where is your sting
Our resurrected King has rendered you defeated

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Forever, He is glorified
Forever, He is lifted high
Forever, He is risen
He is alive
He is alive
Forever, forever

You have overcome
Your resurrected King
You have overcome the grave
You have overcome

We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
The Lamb has overcome

We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
The Lamb has overcome

We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
The Lamb has overcome

We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
The Lamb has overcome

We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
The Lamb has overcome

We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
We sing Hallelujah
The Lamb has overcome

Forever, He is glorified
Forever, He is lifted high
Forever, He is risen
He is alive
He is alive (Forever)

Forever, He is glorified
Forever, He is lifted high
Forever, He is risen
He is alive
He is alive



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John 12:12-13; Romans 6:23 ~ NIV® Copyright 2000 by Biblica, Inc.®

©Celebrate His Love, 2017

Family Pictures

IMG_5611My dad was a wedding photographer, shooting weddings every weekend of my childhood. It was years before the digital camera was invented, so he would usually arrive home with a few pictures left on the last roll of film (digital generation, please visit photographic film). Naturally, my brother and I became the objects of his use-up-the-film photography, thus, we have lots…I mean LOTS…of family pictures!

Before shooting the pose and the smile, my dad would often stop and clean the camera lens, followed by, “Ah yes, now that’s perfect. Chin up, say cheese!!” Sometimes he’d joke to make us laugh, referring to the bald spot on his head…and ultimately, we looked very happy, loved and relaxed in the pictures he took. This was certainly not because we were perfect kids, but because our extraordinary photographer loved us, knew us and knew how to push our smile buttons.

Ultimately, He would show his photography – our pictures – to friends and family, never speaking of our flaws, only focusing on our highlights. Though he knew our faults better than anybody, you could only hear love ring through every word…just love. I wonder if it was because he kept his lens so clean. <huge grin>

My brother and I knew we were special to him, but my dad made everyone he photographed look comfortable, happy and loved. I’m sure his example is very much the reason I find pleasure in making others feel loved, encouraged and special. And it is also the very reason it saddens me when I do quite the opposite. I can chide myself for days on end when I think I’ve hurt someone’s feelings or have been a source of discouragement.! If you do the same, you will relate to Paul’s words as I do…

So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in Godʼs law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to Godʼs law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin. Romans‬ ‭7:21-25‬

We tend to look at ourselves through the lens of what we see in our own thoughts, hearts, and actions…as if looking in a magnifying mirror first thing in the morning. YIKES! We make mistakes, blemishes as it were, and we disgust ourselves. How do I know? I know me…a cracked pot, a broken vessel, damaged goods, but at the same time, HIS vessel, bought by the blood of His precious Son, and now a new creation!

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 2 Corinthians 5:17

Even when I may succumb to my old sinful nature, my Father still beholds me through His spotlessly clean lens. Yes, He looks at you and me through the lens of His perfect, everlasting love. He only sees who we are in Christ.

“Come now, let us settle the matter,” 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

So I say with Paul, “Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!” God not longer sees our sin, but sees us through the lens of Jesus Christ…clean, pure and white as snow. This is amazing grace beyond our comprehension, but fully within our reach when we simply take it by faith and trust Him. We are new because when we come to Jesus and accept His extraordinary, priceless gift of salvation through His shed blood, He takes our sin upon Himself and exchanges it for His robe of righteousness. He suffered all we deserved on the cross of Calvary and gave us all He deserves, a spotlessly clean slate and access to the very throne of God, His Heavenly Father and ours!

We are created in His image, in Christ we beautiful in His sight, and He writes our names on the palm of His hand. I’m thinking that is God’s version of family pictures!

So, chin up, say cheese! 🙂

Romans 7:21-25; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Isaiah 1:18  © 2011-2016 BIBLICA. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED WORLDWIDE

For the Joy of Kelsie

img_5468I was five years old when my paternal grandmother passed away…my parents did not tell me. Years later they said she’d been sick from the day I was born… Hopefully, the two situations are unrelated! My thought is, my parents just wanted to protect me from the reality of death at such an early age. Of course, not long after that our dog ate our hamster so I was pretty sure we would never see him again. Hamsters are easily replaced, not so with grandmas.

My dad didn’t let on that he was sad, at least not to me. I never noticed a tear or a change in his daily pattern… up early and off to work, home at 5:30, dinner with the family, and an evening in his overstuffed easy chair. At five, I was fully into entertaining him with a silly dance, front and center. I would sing him little songs I knew or made up, then sit on his lap where we’d make silly faces, chat, or just sit quietly. More than anything, I just wanted to be where he was. Truth be known, I worshiped Him.

At the time, I had no idea that not only did I fully desire to be with my dad, but he also wanted to be fully with me!

I didn’t know this until I felt this way with my own two boys, and even moreso with my grandchildren. (Sorry, Sons!) I distinctly remember Christmas 2009 and how I was particularly encouraged by our little seven-year-old granddaughter, Kelsie. My dad had passed away the year prior and, due to illness, my mom could not be with us for our annual family gathering… for the first time in my entire life. I know now how blessed I was and am to have had her so long. So back to 2009 (I get sidetracked, in case you hadn’t noticed)… just as I began to feel quite melancholy and close to outright tearyeyed, along came Kelsie in her bubbly, carefree fashion…

Grandma, you want to come play with me in my room?

Did I? You better believe I did! Her love and inclusion snapped me out of my not-so-mini pity party faster than the smell of chocolate chip cookies! As we walked up the stairs to her room, my tears were replaced with her joyful childlike chatter and afternoon plans for us to dress up and play with all of her dolls! When Kelsie played, her entire room became a City of Barbies, American Girl dolls, Cabbage Patch dolls, Teddy Bears, puppets, Disney Princesses, My Little Ponies and then some! After all, it takes all kinds to make a City! And Kelsie… well, she just wanted someone to be fully there and I love her so much that I couldn’t help myself. The fact remained, I needed her to be fully there too, and she was…just at the right time. What joy she brought me then…and still does to this day!

Is that how my dad felt about me when he lost his mom? Did my silly dances, songs and faces keep him laughing, living and loving through the loss of his beautiful mother? Though I can’t speak for him, it sure rings true in my life with Kelsie, and her two siblings and three cousins!

And then of course there is our Heavenly Father… By now you are most likely expecting this part. 🙂 I have to think that since He planted these emotions in us as parents and grandparents, and since we are fashioned after His image, He feels the same way about us… only galaxies bigger, eons better and oceans purer!! And death is more of a reality to Him than we can ever imagine… How His heart must ache to see a soul He loves go into eternity without coming into relationship with Him. And then maybe at that very instant He catches a glimpse of you singing and dancing before Him in true worship, and His tears turn into a smile. Doesn’t that thought make you smile too?

“Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” John‬ ‭4:23-24 NIV‬

“A single day in your courts is better than a thousand anywhere else! I would rather be a gatekeeper in the house of my God than live the good life in the homes of the wicked.” Psalms‬ ‭84:10‬ ‭NLT‬‬

“Come, let’s shout praises to GOD, raise the roof for the Rock who saved us! Let’s march into his presence singing praises, lifting the rafters with our hymns!” Psalm‬ ‭95:1-2‬ ‭MSG‬‬

The bottom line… Not only do we fully need to enter our Heavenly Father’s presence in joyful worship, but He wholeheartedly desires to be fully in our presence as well! Like Kelsie, we can ask Him… “Father, You want to come play with me in my room?” My guess… He wants to! For reals! 🙂


John 4:23-24 Scripture quotations marked NIV are taken from NIV® Copyright 2011 by Biblica, Inc.®

Psalm 84:10 Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Psalm 95:1-2 Scripture quotations marked MSG are taken from The Message. Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.

Even If

Music speaks to our souls so deeply and this particular song brings John 6 to mind.

From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him. “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve.

But without missing a beat, Simon Peter answered him…

Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.

‭As you may or may not know, even with this strong resolve, Simon Peter slipped up a time or two, even to the point of denying three times that he knew Jesus at all. But Jesus didn’t leave him there, and later showered him with grace asking him if he, Peter, loved Him three times.

Peter answered each time with even greater conviction than before…

You know that I love you.

Jesus gave Peter a total do-over… I can’t tell you how many He has given me… and Peter went on to live out that love never denying his Lord ever again, even when it meant his own death. I have to think that on that day he may have said again,

Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.

Oh Lord, give me, give each of us, that strong resolve to love You, serve You and trust You to the very end… Even if!

‭John 6:66-69, John 21 NIV® Copyright 2011 by Biblica, Inc.®

In other words…

Concise and precise!! NICE!! ❤️



“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed. Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice.”

Proverbs 31:8-9  Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

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Am I Right?

Thoughts and feelings vary so drastically, even in our relationship with God. If you are anything like me (which is a scary thought in itself), you too are prone to wander. And yet, no matter how we feel, God is faithfully present, never changing or wandering from His love for us. And this never-changing God has left us with excellent examples in His Word and through His servants… here are just a few:

You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water. ~Psalm 63:1

A Bible that’s falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn’t. ~C.H. Spurgeon

The Lord replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” ~Exodus 33:14

Prayer is… doubt’s destroyer, ruin’s remedy, the antidote to all anxieties. ~C.H. Spurgeon

It is important to remember that HE never moves, so when we feel spiritually dry, parched, like we’re falling apart, alone, doubting, ruined or anxious…it just maybe, just might be, just could be time to draw nigh to Him again…seeking, thirsting, longing, reading, going back into His Presence and praying earnestly, honestly and openly to the One who is ever and always there for us.

So, am I right or am I right or am I right? Hmmm, I think I’m right. 😉

Psalm 63:1; Exodus 33:14 NIV® Copyright 2011 by Biblica, Inc.®

Square pegs in round holes

Our Loving Maker’s Design


The expression “a square peg in a round hole” is used to describe a misfit—a person who does not belong in the place or situation where he or she is. I suspect the picture many people have of a square peg in a round hole comes from children’s toys which consist of several objects of different shapes—a square, a circle, a triangle, a star—with a corresponding hole for each object. The objects are carefully sized so that they will fit only through the hole where they are meant to fit.

When I was a boy, I read that carpenters in America often used to put square pegs into round holes. There were several good reasons to do this. I never saw square pegs in round holes, though, until I was an adult. A farmer was giving me and my family a tour of his farm, and he came to a…

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Precious Thoughts

While trying to fall asleep last night, I was thinking about how God wrote 66 books to tell us His story… and so often, I try to fit my story into one blog! Mercy, who do I think I am!?! So for today, I will leave you with this simple thought… Since His thoughts about us are so vast…immense, HUGE…shouldn’t His thoughts be precious to us? Today I’m pondering ‘just how precious is His Word to me?’ Excuse me while I go read a few more of His thoughts… No doubt, He will want to follow up with a little heart-to-heart chat! Then, of course, we’ll celebrate!

Later, Babe, gotta run! 🙂

Loved, Accepted and Approved

img_5002-1You have a story… The story about that one person in your life that simply does not like you, doesn’t approve of you, or rejects you time and time again. (Stick with me, here, this will get encouraging.) It can be a parent, grandparent, sibling, neighbor, friend, coworker, spouse, anyone! It may be a person or persons in your present, or it can be someone from your past whose words and attitude toward you crop up to reject you over and over again, often when you least expect it. Definitely when you don’t need the reminders. How do I know? Because I have that someone too. Sad to say, we all have a story like that to tell in one way or another. But today I’m here to remind you that you are 100% loved, accepted and approved! Yes, YOU!!!

As a child, I would sit on my dad’s lap (pictured) at the end of each day, enjoying him and ultimately getting to know him. I didn’t realize what deep roots his love cultivated in my heart until I was older. As a new believer, it was difficult at first for me to spend time with my Heavenly Father. I’d heard that a lot of this depended upon me reading His Word, and by nature I am not much of a reader. However, through my own neediness, time on God’s lap developed, and His Word became vital to a close relationship with Him and a fruitful life as His child.

The time spent on my dad’s lap as a child gave me perspective about all the happenings of each day…feelings of not being accepted by a sibling, disapproved by my mom or teacher, rejected by a friend. I didn’t know it at the time, but I needed my dad to model what a loving Heavenly Father looks like…and fortunately for me, he did. But what if you didn’t have that kind of dad…and believe me, I’ve met plenty of people that didn’t…well, I have great news for you! Please lean in and listen close because this is what I really want to say to you today. I’m getting so excited! Drum roll please…


Yes, 100% loved… This is HUGE!!! Jesus said in John 14:21, “…The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.” Some may say, “But I don’t even know Him, and I don’t understand all that Christian-ese. It’s scary.” Yes, it is…I felt that way too, but God’s plan is simpler than you may think. I struggled with believing I was loved, even though I did have a loving earthly father. I could understand how God loved others, but I knew myself too well to believe He loved me. Listen closely… it is not about us. He loves us because love is foundational to His character. He IS Love. Isn’t that huge? So for now please accept that He loves you because of Who He is, and His character is non-negotiable. YOU are loved by the God of the Universe!


Here’s where clarity begins. Ephesians 1:6 says, “To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.” The bottom line is when we accept Jesus Christ, The Father accepts us. This is called grace, getting something we don’t deserve. And God loves us so much that He provided it for us in Jesus Christ. Sound too simple? I know it does, but it is truth and the truth will set you free…not just at the beginning but for the rest of your life. And more truth is found in John 6:29, “Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”” We think we have to work for salvation, but this is actually the only thing we need to do…believe in Jesus Christ. Invite Him into your heart and life, to cleanse you from your sin and to be your Savior… It can be a simple prayer in the simplest of words. He knows your heart! He will come in when He is invited, and yes, it is as simple as it sounds. It’s not a feeling, it is faith…you trusting that His Word is true, and believe me…He is true to His Word!

And with that comes full acceptance from The Father!! He sent His Son Jesus, the Perfect Lamb of God who never sinned, to pay the price for our sin. He took our place on the cross and His sacrifice guarantees us access to the very Holy throne of God. Nothing unclean can enter God’s presence, but Jesus Christ bought our sin with His blood and gave us His robe of righteousness. I like to call it “The Great Exchange.” He took all of our sin on Himself, clothed us in His wardrobe of righteousness, signed our adoption papers with His blood and we are now God’s children. We become joint heirs with Jesus, and because of this, we are fully and 100% accepted in the beloved. We are part of a huge Heavenly Family! Wow!

Truth be known, I was not a perfect child by any stretch of the imagination so please forgive me for using myself as an example of Jesus, but this is more about my dad’s example of The Heavenly Father. With that said, when I would introduce a new friend to my dad, he would look at me and say, “This is your friend?” I would nod yes and he would immediately turn to them and say, “Well, welcome to the family!” He only knew them for a minute, but because I accepted them into my life and they accepted me, he followed suit. And so it is with Jesus and His Father! John 6:37 says, “All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away.” When we go to Jesus, we go to God and He will never drive us away…you will NEVER be rejected by Him, never, never ever! And my friends still talk about how my dad loved them…often when they were not feeling loved by their own dad. Maybe that’s you today… Your earthly father or other family member never showed you the love you needed. I share my earthly dad’s memory with you for this very purpose…to give you a clearer picture of our loving, accepting Heavenly Father!


This one came out of my quiet time this morning (I have learned to enjoy reading!)… John 6:27 says, “Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.” He is the Bread of Life that endures forever. When we feast on Jesus Who is already approved by The Father, we too are approved. Not because of what we do, have done or haven’t done, but because of Whose we are and all that He did on our behalf! The Father filters all He sees in you and feels about you through the lens of the perfect love He has for His only Son Jesus. He is approved… thus, you are approved!

Thank you for sticking with me through this long post. I hope you see it, know it, and feel it! YOU ARE LOVED, ACCEPTED AND APPROVED! And that, my dear reader, is something to celebrate!!!

Responding to Love

Love is an action word, responding to His Word… The fact is God is actively and passionately loving you today! The big question is how do I/we respond? Life’s choices, the good and the bad (yes, I have made bad choices), have taught me that there is always tremendous freedom in obeying Him fully, knowing that His Word leads us on the best path possible, regardless of human desires, feelings or fears. As one songwriter says, “Oh, how He loves me…” And I have to ask… “Oh, how am I loving Him?”image

Old Story, New Thought

Slide1As many of you know, I used to love to dance with my dad! And as a little girl I would wrap my arms tightly around his waist and stand on his feet while he danced and moved us both happily around the living room. Of course, his arms were wrapped around me as well, and there was nowhere else to look but up! But without fail, his eyes of love were always looking down at me. I knew I was the apple of his eye.

Amy Boucher Pye said, “…with eyes being precious and fragile, they need protecting, and that’s how the Lord wants to love and protect His people – by holding them close to His heart.”

Whether or not you had an earthly dad that held you close and protected you, YOU can rest assured that you do have a Heavenly Father that looks at you with eyes of love and a heart that wants to protect you. You are His precious daughter, the apple of His eye! And my hope, dear sister, is that you are dancing with Him today! #morningponderingsfromdori

Note: Please help yourself to the graphic…I so enjoyed creating it from a royalty free print, and would be honored to see it shared!

The Way

Over 3,000 miles across the United States in a 1958 Chevy Belair… I traveled that journey three times in less than two year’s time. I was 9 when we began, 10 1/2 when we completed trip #3, always riding in the back seat behind the driver. The driver was my dad, my earthly hero, my Superman. At that time in my life he was still the biggest, strongest, smartest man in the whole world. I didn’t realize until I was older that he was only 5’8″ and had an 8th grade education. Of course even when I did find that out, it didn’t matter because my dad never failed me… not in any way that really mattered anyway.

So back to the journey, my parents decided to move from Boston to California… You know, swimmin’ pools, movie stars (for those who remember Jed Clampett). But the real reason my parents decided to uproot our family was because dad had bad ears and the cold weather caused him extreme pain. But after six months away from our huge family my parents got homesick… so we trekked back to Boston, bought another house, froze through another winter, sold that house and, yes, moved back to California. This choice was final…they chose California with its sunshine and ocean breezes, over freezing in Boston near my grandparents, 33 cousins and 20 aunts and uncles. My brother and I were not a part of the decision, but we were part of the journeys, moving, changes, and adjustments. In the process we lived in eight different places and attended six different schools within a two year time span. And though confused at times, I don’t ever remember questioning if we had done the right thing, or wondering how it was going to turn out. I simply trusted my parents.

As each road trip began, whether from east to west or west to east, I simply got in the car, back seat, driver’s side. Dad was always at the wheel, Mom road shotgun and my brother sat behind her. My mom was the navigator, with a map from AAA in her hand, and there was a compass on the dashboard telling us which way was north, south, east and west. Ah yes, the pre-GPS years.

Now my dad… he was deaf in his right ear and couldn’t hear well out of his left, so my mom would yell directions to him, or maybe it was AT him, “Wally, you need to take the next exit!” My dad would be silent… Then we’d hear more of a shriek, “Wally, the next exit! Wally, you missed the exit!”

My brother and I would be in the back seat singing the ol’ tune of “California here we come… right back where we started from.” My parents would argue about how to get turned around and back on the highway to find the correct exit before our car broke down or ran out of gas. We never did run out of gas, but we did spend an extra night or two in the middle of nowhere while waiting for some small town mechanic to repair our car on more than one occasion, one of which we got to stay in a motel with a pool… a real treat to a couple of east coast kids.

Eventually, we’d resume our journey, and regardless of the trials along the way, the rough road conditions, threatening weather reports or engine trouble, we arrived safely at our destination every time. And my brother and I always got in the car, sat back, relaxed and trusted my dad at the wheel, my mom with the map and the compass to show us the way.

My earthly father passed away seven years ago today, and though I miss him more than ever, I am so grateful for all the ‘pictures of God’ he gave me through his loving example. As I look back, this story is a picture of this journey we call ‘life.’ So often it takes us to unknown places… a little scary, a bit exciting, sometimes a combination of the two. Other times the journey takes us to familiar places, like going home. Along the way there are road blocks, detours, bumps in the road, poor weather conditions, break downs and delays. And then again, it can be like smooth sailing on the open road with a picnic lunch in the trunk. Either way, I can hop in the car, sit back and relax, and trust my Heavenly Father at the wheel, with the Holy Spirit as my Navigator and His Living Word as my compass (my GPS)…knowing I will always reach the destination He has mapped out for me. He has it all in control, He never fails, He has promised in His Word to never leave me or forsake me…and He never has. I can say with joy, I have NEVER been sorry for getting in the car and trusting my life into His most capable hands… He’s an flawless driver who not only knows the way, He IS the Way! Care to go for a ride?

Right Side Out

The message of the attached music video (below) is so beautifully basic… You are loved!! Maybe the power of it comes from the fact that we don’t always freely receive love. If we truly knew how loved we were, we would be more apt to love others recklessly…especially other women. It doesn’t seem to take much to trigger our insecurities and make us feel threatened. Of course, I’m speaking from my own point of reference and I sincerely never want to feel this way, and I trust you don’t either. Chiding myself first, this is not faith, but fear. The spirit of darkness endeavors to bind our hearts with these chains of fear and discouragement, and take us back to the pit the Lord Jesus Christ redeemed us from. When we find ourselves plummeting down there again, we have a choice. We can wallow in the muck and mire of aloneness behind walls of self pity that no one can penetrate, or we can heed the words of Romans 14:23 that says, “…whatever is not from faith is sin.” Yikes! That means every time we feel this way we have a second choice: to escape the tempter’s snare! That speaks to me… I can choose to fall on my chubby knees and confess that this self-focus and fear is, in fact, sin; then turn from it in sincere repentance and trust God as I choose the path of faith again, focusing on His love and faithfulness. People may hurt us and let us down, but we need not fear when we know, ultimately, that we have a trustworthy Heavenly Father who doesn’t miss a second of our lives. When we choose to focus on His faithfulness again, loving Him above all else (Matthew 22:37-40), the path ahead is always more glorious! We find we are more open to loving others, with hearts beating to the rhythm of our Heavenly Father’s…His love flows through us and to them. We begin to love others as we love ourselves regardless of how we feel. We see His truth transform our hearts anew and we realize what a lie those mere feelings were. No longer deceived, we discover we do not even feel insecure or threatened anymore because faith and love took over, reigning on our heart’s throne. It all begins when we give away what we so desperately need ourselves. It sounds a bit backwards, but it is always that way in God’s economy. This is faith in action. The truth is we live backwards in our old selves, and when we learn to live as He designed us we are doing it right side out. My precious friend, feel it or not, you can fully trust Him with this…YOU ARE LOVED!

God Is Passionate About You…


His feelings for you are vehement, intense and compelled by His giant, amazing, pure and holy love for you. There is no other love like it in the entire universe and it is all yours for the taking. He demonstrated it most clearly through His Son Jesus Christ who suffered and died for you and me so that through His resurrected life and Spirit we can have fellowship with the Father in this life and for all eternity. Yesterday my husband and I were sitting at the beach watching a couple of surfers ride wave after wave. I certainly understand why an energetic young man might want to pursue this adventurous sport in the heat of summer, but in 60 degree weather and freezing cold water until well past 8:00 p.m.? What compels a person to do that? The only conclusion I could draw is that it springs from a sincere and zealous passion for the sport. Then I had to ask myself if I had ever been THAT passionate about anything (?) …to be SO in love with something that I would spend all my energy and waking hours pursuing it, improving it and mastering it. Wouldn’t it be life-changing to be that passionate about our walk with the Lord Jesus Christ? I recently saw a poster that said, “I can’t brag about my love for God because I fail him daily. But I can brag about His love for me because HE NEVER FAILS.” Ever feel like you ‘wiped out’ again? It can happen in an instant… a bad attitude, a hasty response, an unkind word. But the father of the prodigal son is such a beautiful picture of God’s all-pursuing, passionate love for us even when we fail.  Luke 15:20 says, “But while he was still a long way off (the son who had spent all his inheritance on wild living), his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.” Yes, God is THAT passionate about YOU, dear sister-in-Christ! You can never wipe out so much that He will stop loving you. You can ride the wave of His passionate, sincere, zealous love for you every day of your life, in any weather! He is running to you, kissing you! Feel the grace, the warmth…and pass it on! 🙂

Good Morning, Princess!

Princess 4
Good morning, Princess! If you are female in gender, that is how your Heavenly Father would greet you as you strain to keep your eyes closed for just one more minute’s sleep. And if you could truly hear it with your ears, wouldn’t your eyes pop open instantly to see the smile on His loving face and speak with Him more? (I might become a true morning person!) Well, Princess, HE IS RIGHT HERE! He is closer than your very breath. You may not be able to see Him, hear Him, touch Him or even feel Him, but He is here! Jesus’ very name, Emmanuel, means God WITH us (Matthew 1:23). And “he has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5). No matter what you are going through or where you are in your life, you are not alone! Even if your heart is heavy, your body’s weak, your knees are knocking and your world is falling apart, HE IS HERE! Maybe you can hardly stand to your feet today, but rise up, Princess, your King will take your hand and give you His shoulder to cry on, His arm to lean on and His promise to stand on…”And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:20).

Of Royal Birth

Princess 3

Even when you can’t see it, God sees. Even when you don’t feel like it, you are are a princess, a child of royal birth!

Once Jesus became your Savior, you became joint heirs with Him. You are God’s chosen child, the one He has clothed in His royal robe of righteousness. You have a new Home address in Heaven, and earth is now a foreign country where you represent your King and your Kingdom. 1 Peter 2:9 says, “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” (NIV) Yes, you are crowned for greatness! And now you represent the greatest Kingdom of all as His valued ambassador to a world in need. Through you, others will see your King’s heart for man and womankind, His everlasting love for all who believe, His compassion for the brokenhearted, His sacrificial forgiveness for sin…and yes, His service as you tangibly meet the needs of others with love. The life of a princess is not always glorious (even Cinderella had to scrub a few floors before she danced at the ball). We are not Home yet and until we parade down the streets of Heaven, we have a high calling, a job to do. Let us live so that others will see what it is like to be His child and maybe, just maybe they will want to be one too. Your life has a divine purpose that only you can fulfill during your pilgrimage here on earth. May you shine His wonderful light as you walk worthy of your crown each day of your life! You still may not see it, but it’s there! Have a blessed week, dear Princess!

Women of Worth

From Genesis to Revelation, God has written a love letter that surpasses all others combined. HE does everything possible to express His love and great redemption for mankind [male and female]. Throughout this Book He has included priceless stories about women for the heart of woman… drawing extraordinary pictures of His Amazing Love! 189 of these women are called by name!!! This doesn’t include any of the innumerable women who are unnamed such as Noah’s wife, Jephthah’s daughter and Peter’s mother-in-law.

Women are so valuable to God, important enough for Him to include their stories in His Word, His Story! Whether in a leading role, a supporting role or in the background – what the world may list as an extra or a stage hand – whether a wife, mother, mother-in-law, sister, daughter, etc., every woman is of great value to the God of the Universe!

And you, dear Woman of Worth, are of GREAT VALUE to HIM as well! He knows your name, He knows your circumstances, your heart’s desires, your struggles, your failures and your successes and He wants to be a part of them all. It is my prayer that you will be a part of this journey as we focus on our giant God, His timeless Word and His unfailing love for us!