Tuesday, December 20, 2016

A Bowl Full of Mercy - Bonita Y. McCoy

 Mercy is a mixing bowl of emotions

It calls for one part forgiveness,
One part of putting yourself into someone else’s shoes,
And one part remembering your own short comings.

I know this because I recently received a lesson in mercy.

Let’s look at the story of the adulteress woman, a great story of mercy.

The group brought her to Jesus
and told him what she had done. By law, the group was right in wanting to stone her.
After all, it was the law, and she had been caught.

But Jesus writes in the sand, and says to them “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.”  One by one, all the accusers leave. They had been reminded of their own short comings. Their own times of giving way to temptation, of choosing the wrong path, of being human.

When Jesus is left standing there with the woman, he asks her who accuses her. She replies, “No one, Lord.”

This leaves only Jesus. He is the only one who could condemn this woman, the only one with the right to do so.

But…there is the word that engulfs mercy. But he didn’t. “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”

Oh, so many times we are in the right. We could point a finger adding to someone’s hurt,


There is the choice. Do we lift them up? Do we overlook the one mistake, choosing to focus on all the other good things? Do we say, “It’s okay. I’ve made my own mistakes.”

And then do we pour God’s forgiveness on them? The same forgiveness God poured on us.

Or do we miss the opportunity to show mercy and all that word entails.

I challenge us this week in the midst of the Christmas Season to give the gift of mercy.
Measure it out in large heaps, saying “Yes, I know, but… God so loved the world.”

Help us to show your mercy. Let us go beyond ourselves to meet the needs of others.
Give us your strength for it is through Christ that we can do all things. 


Monday, December 12, 2016

Focus on Joy - Bonita Y. McCoy

We find joy in many things, our family or our friends.

We can find joy in our work, good company, or a great piece of literature.

But it is not the same as the joy we find in the Lord.
When we draw near to the Lord and seek His face, we are filled with unspeakable joy. It can sustain us in hard times and encourage us when our wells seem almost dry.

It gives us strength.
It gives us hope.
It give us peace.

"For the joy of Lord is your strength." Nehemiah 8:10b
"Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy." Psalm 126:5
"Therefore with joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation." Isaiah 12:3

Let us during this season draw our joy from the source and focus our hearts on Him. Let His joy revive us. Let it move us to carry on with the journey.

Fill us with your joy. May it be our strength through hard places and a light in the darkness.


Monday, December 5, 2016

The Gift of Peace - Bonita Y. McCoy

Psalm 29:11
We ask you, Eternal One, to give strength to your people; Eternal One, bless them with the gift of peace (The Voice Bible).
The Lord will give strength unto his people; the Lord will bless his people with peace (NIV).

Peace is a gift given by the Father.

 I do not refer simply to the peace between nations though our nation does enjoy peace.

We do not hide in bunkers because bombs sail through the air nor do most of us scramble through wreckage and rubble looking for our next meal as too many in other countries do.

This type of peace is a blessing – a great blessing.

But I speak of the peace within our souls – that peace that Jesus gives. “Peace I leave with you…” Then he tells us “let not your heart be troubled neither let it be afraid.”

This peace comes from abiding in our Lord and his abiding in us.

This peace brings with it security, hope, purpose, and a sense of well-being.
It gives us the ability even when our hearts are troubled and afraid to know where to find strength. It gives us a place to lean.

It is that peace that surpasses all understanding. It is the gift that rescues us his children like a float when life gets too crazy. It is a peace that bubbles up within us, and we can hear him say to the wind and waves, “peace, be still.”

This Christmas Season let us remember God’s gift of peace and draw strength for our souls from it.

We press into you asking for your peace.
Help us to demonstrate your peace and love to your world around us.


Monday, November 28, 2016

Hope for the World - Bonita Y. McCoy

Advent is upon us for those of us who celebrate it.

I haven’t always observed advent, but a few years back, I felt compelled to do a daily prayer time during the advent season. 

So, Sunday I dug out my candles and began this year’s advent journey.

The theme this week is hope.

As I began my reading this morning, I found myself in Psalm 80:3. 

“Bring us back to You, God, turn the light of Your face upon us so that we will be rescued from this sea of darkness.” 
(The Voice Bible).

This, I thought, is hope. 

God’s light shining upon us, rescuing us from the darkness. This prayer of restoration uttered by the congregation thousands of years ago, calling into the depths of the darkness to God the Father for light, for hope.

Then, I turned to John 12: 46, and found God’s answer to His people.
“I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believes on me should not abide in darkness.” (NKJV).  Hope came in the form of Jesus providing a light to show the way. We no longer have to grope in the darkness. The Father has sent the light. 

Jesus is the hope, the light, the answer.

The light came to dispel the darkness, to draw all men to Himself. God answered the prayers of His people. He made a way of restoration.

In Christ, there is hope for all men.

Thank you for our hope in Christ. Please touch all who have not found the light of the world. Draw them to you through your Holy Spirit.


Monday, November 21, 2016

Turkey in the Stress - Bonita Y. McCoy

“Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.”  Psalm 90:14
Irish Press

Do you know the song “Turkey in the Straw”?

Well, this time of year it feels more like “Turkey in the Stress”!

We are all running around, like some headless turkeys, preparing for Thanksgiving –
Cooking, grocery shopping, wondering if Aunt Jane and Uncle Henry will be here?
Do I have enough chairs, plates?

And there is nothing wrong with the fun and activity of the season. In fact, I love it.  The Lord, himself, encourages us to practice hospitality.

However, when the chairs or food or plans become more important than the people we are trying to bless, then our focus is out of balance, and it can cause us to implode or worse explode.

A good way to keep the feelings of stress at bay is to spend a little time each day this week with the Lord. 

 A quiet moment with Him early on will refill us and give birth to a joyful song. It will quiet our hearts and direct our attitudes. 

So, friend, and I'm speaking to myself, spend time in his unfailing love this week, soaking it up through his word and your song will be “Thank You, Lord” and “We Gather Together” instead of "Who Let the Dogs Out" and how did they get the turkey. 

This is a wonderful time for us to show the love of God to those we love – so invest time with God to have your best time with others!

Invest to be your best!

And have a blessed Thanksgiving week.

Dear Father,
Draw me to you this week and remind me that you are the one thing that is truly needed.


Monday, November 14, 2016

Loving - Bonita Y. McCoy

"Lovest thou me?" "Feed my sheep."                    
In this, Jesus tells us how to love Him.

It is through connecting our interest to His interest in people that we show our love for Him (Oswald Chambers).

We cannot say we love God and not love people -

Love must be seen woven throughout our day as we go about the art of living.

We reach to be
patient, showing kindness.

We avoid being
arrogant or rude or indecent.

We strive to
not get bent out of shape or absorbed in our self.

We celebrate
truth - completely delighting in it.

We forgive
the wrongs of others because how often are we the ones in the wrong.

Love puts up with anything and everything, because the God of love is long suffering with us 
(1Cor 13:4-7) The Voice Bible. 

When we feed His people, we become the living, breathing love of God to them.  If you love me, then feed my sheep.

The practice of loving people is the practice of loving God.

Today, let God's love flow through you and touch someone who may need it.

Your people need your love. Fill us, so that we may fill others.




Monday, November 7, 2016

Comfort for Others - Bonita Y. McCoy

This morning I woke up thinking about my dad.

He passed away nearly twenty years ago, but this morning when I was in that hazy place between awake and asleep, I saw him standing at the top of the steps at his old house.

I’m sure this happened because of a TV show I saw last night.  A woman in the show kept an article of clothing of someone she loved so she could have his scent with her.
When my father passed, I kept a handkerchief of his because it smelled like him.

Breathing in his scent, comforted me.

It’s strange how a sight or a sound, music or a string of words can remind us of those that have gone before us. It brings afresh the loss we feel.

I know from experience that grief never leaves; it just turns to water and ebbs and flows. Some days it’s a hurricane, a torrent of uncontrolled pain and hurt. Some days it’s a ripple, a faint inkling ever present.

But our pain is never for nothing in the economy of God the Father. He uses our sufferings, our grief, our loneliness along the journey to help others on their way.

If we allow him, he will use the very things that drew us closest to him as catalysts for his work in the lives of others.

“He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.” 2 Cor 1:4

Funny how God does that. My pain, my hurt, my grief in his hands becomes the fish and loaves used to feed others the bread of life.

My dad’s handkerchief is housed in a small wooden box that sits on my shelf in my room. It has long lost its scent, but the comfort it gives still remains.

The comfort God has given faithfully over the years, it too remains. My part is to share that comfort with others along the way as the waters of grief begin to swirl so that they may find God amid the tide.

Only you know these places in us. Give us the words to comfort those who are hurting in our sphere today.  Let us be a blessing and not a burden to their wounded heart.


Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Struggles - Bonita Y. McCoy

“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.” Matt 11:28-30 NIV.

It was as if the preacher had been standing in my kitchen all week long, listening to what was going on in my world.

He started by talking about burdens and how everyone has them. He reminded us that no household is immune to them.

Whether you call them burdens, struggles, or issues, the preacher is right; we all do have them. They come in various types, sizes, and flavors.

Some we bring on ourselves through bad decisions, chasing our own desires, or being stubborn. I know a thing or two about that last one.

Others we inherit from our kids. Because we love them, we walk with them through their struggles.

Then there are those that happen because it is part of life, the death of a loved one due to sickness or the loss of a job because of downsizing.

Struggles come. It’s a fact.

The question is: how are we going to handle them?

In Matthew 11:28, Jesus tells us to “come”; He invites us to bring him our burdens. He asks us to get in the yoke with him, so we don’t have to pull the load alone, and then something unimaginable happens, he tells us that his yoke is easy and his burden is light. He actually lightens the load and gives our weary souls rest.

 A dear friend of mine once said, “It’s not the situation but the response that counts.” I think she’s right.

It’s not the situation, but the response that counts.

Our response needs to be to turn to Jesus the redeemer and lover of our soul, so that when we go through struggles, they become tools for the Lord to use to help others instead of straps that tie us down.

Take your struggles, issues, burdens to the Lord today. Get in the yoke with Him and find rest for your soul.

We bring you our struggles and those of our family. Please give us your wisdom and direction in all these things. Help us to come to you humbly knowing you alone have the answers. Let us have right responses to these situations that we may bring glory to your name.


Friday, October 28, 2016

Tempted to Toss the Towel - Bonita Y. McCoy

So many times in life, we want to give up.
Throw that towel into the ring and call it quits.

I know because there were days when my kids were younger all I wanted to do was huddle in the middle of my bed and hide because the to-do list seemed never to end. "Mom" seemed to be the mantra that streamed out of everyone's mouth wanting or needing something else, something more.

Home schooling, housework, part-time job, teaching classes could overwhelm me if I let them get away from me.  But all these things I felt called to do and all of them were good things.

When I felt that wash of I can't do this or have I lost my mind, I would call my prayer partner, and she would pray. We would ask God for His wisdom for each situation and then I would ask Him again to confirm that the things I was busy doing were the right things, His things.

If you are feeling like giving up, don't. Check in with the Lord and make sure the things you are busy about are meant for you to do, and if they are, then ask the God of the mountains, and the wind who knows your every thought to strengthen you. He will equip you to do the good works prepared for you before the foundation of the world.

God never expects us to do it all. But He does expect us to do what He designed us to do. We all have a purpose and pursuing that purpose even when we are busy and tired will bring great joy. 

Find your passion, Find your purpose, Find your path.

Galatians 6:9 The Voice
"May we never tire of doing what is good and right before our Lord
because in His Season we shall bring in a great harvest if we can just persist."

There is a harvest to be had for all our hard work: strong families, loved children, strong minds, and strengthening others.

Sometimes doing right can be tiring no doubt about it. But let us keep our eye on the prize and don't throw in that towel just yet.

Be the lifter of our heads and encourage  our hearts  to keep doing what is good and right in your eyes. Thank you for the opportunity to serve you.


Monday, October 24, 2016

Abandoned - Bonita Y. McCoy

Abandonment is a hard thing to swallow. No matter what form it comes in.
It happens in life to most people - one way or another.

You are left by mistake by a parent or a spouse thinking you got home some other way like the time my husband and I left one of our sons at church thinking the other one had him.

Or you get left waiting for a lunch date that never shows, or texts, or calls.
All together forgotten - dropped right out of their minds.

Then there are those who have experienced a life changing type of loss where someone leaves or passes on in death. These can bring the feelings of loneliness and abandonment to a point of aching, the hurt being deep.

But there is hope for those of us who are Christians because God does not abandon.
He is the friend that sticks closer then a brother. (Proverbs 18:24)
He is the one who never leaves us nor forsakes us.

He will not leave us in our times of heartache and pain. He will not walk away.
He has promised not to abandon, but to abide.

Not Abandoned -
But Abiding

His love for us is deep enough to send His son to redeem us, so that we can abide in that same love.

Romans 8: 38 “For I have every confidence that nothing – not death, life, heavenly messengers, dark spirits, the present, the future, spiritual powers, height, depth, nor any created thing – can come between us and the love of God revealed in the Anointed, Jesus our Lord.” The Voice.

If the enemy is trying to tell you that God has turned his back on you, abandoned you, don't believe a word of it. Speak God's truth to your heart. Hear, friend, how much God loves you and let Him who calls you beloved turn those ashes of abandonment into a crown of beauty.

Fill us with your love. Heal our feelings of abandonment and loss. Touch those deep places where only you can abide with us and through your mercy turn our ashes into crowns of beauty for your glory.



Monday, October 17, 2016

Burn Out - Bonita Y. McCoy

Burn out is the state of total depletion of all our physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional resources. It is the product of daily stress and the demands of life.

We all experience it.

"I can't go any further,"; "this is all I've got," or
"Stick a fork in me, I'm done," are statements that we've all made at one time or another.

So, how can we as Christian Women fight against becoming burned out?

The answer lies in John 15: 4.
"Abide in me, and I will abide in you. A branch cannot bear fruit if it is disconnected from the vine, and neither will you if you are not connected to me," The Voice Bible.

Our cure for burn out is to abide in Jesus. We must be connected to the one who refreshes with living water.

I'm not simply referring to a daily time with Him though that's important.
I'm talking about staying in step with Him as we pace ourselves throughout our days and weeks. Our directions about life and what to fill it with should come from our connection with the Father and not from all the demands of the outside world.  

Abiding with God leads to Abounding in power!

Burn out happens - to everyone.

But whether we stay in that state or not is up to us.
We need to take the time to get connected with the one who loves us most by:
            Reading His Word,
            Praying about our schedules, and
            Doing some serious de-cluttering of our over worked souls,

Isaiah 40:29 (NKJV) "He gives power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increases strength."

I ask that you help me to connect fully with you and teach me your pace for my life, so that I may be poured out, not burned out - Fill me with Your power.


Thursday, October 13, 2016

First Things First - Bonita Y. McCoy

First Things First

Grab a hold of God's wisdom.

Follow it through to understanding it and being able to apply it.

Celebrate the blessings.

Don't dwell on the negative
            Go Positive.

Know He is God, and you don't have to be.

Seek prayer support and good counsel. It'll keep you on the right path.

Seek for God's truth
            That will set you free!

Hold on to God's promises; they are sure. 

"Gathering sound judgment is key, so first things first: go after Lady Wisdom!
Now, whatever else you do, follow through to understanding. Cherish her, and she will help you rise above the confusion of life -
your possibilities will open up before you-
embrace her, and she will raise you to a place of honor in return.
She will provide the finishing touch to your character - grace;" Proverbs 4:7-9 The Voice


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Monday, October 10, 2016

Soul Weary - Bonita Y. McCoy

Proverbs 3: 21-22 in The Voice states "My son (or daughter) never lose sight of God's Wisdom and knowledge: make decisions out of true wisdom, guard your good sense, and they will be life to your soul and fine jewelry around your neck."

Do you ever feel soul weary? So tired you can't make one more decision?

Most of us have experienced this flood of being overwhelmed by life. Everyone is expecting something. Us wanting to meet those expectations, but feeling like there just isn't enough time in our day, week, month, to get it all done.  Wrestling with that feeling of not enough "me" to go around.

In our Bible study at church, we are studying Lysa Terkeurst's book The Best Yes. She has done a masterful job of breaking down the decision making process, so that we as women can be equipped to make good decisions.

She teaches that there are two decisions making tendencies, Proactive and Reactive.
And as you've probably already guessed, most of us work out of the reactive tendency.

That would be our knee jerk reaction to either say yes or no without giving it any true consideration through prayer, discussion with our spouse, or looking through the scriptures.

Some women lean towards saying yes too quickly because they hate to disappoint anyone. They figure "surely I can fit this one thing in." Or they feel that it is for a good cause and would be a worth while use of their time.

Then there are the women like me whose knee jerk reaction is to say no too quickly. I do this especially in my parenting.  There have been so many times that I've had to go back to my children and tell them that after thinking and praying the answer was yes.

But as today's scripture suggests, we need to be proactive decision makers. We need to make our decisions out of true wisdom - God's wisdom. And in order to do that, we need to take the time to think through the decisions we make with some very concrete resources in mind ( knowledge).

In order to move from the Reactive tendency to being Proactive, evaluate your resources as you're going through the decisions making process. These resources are financial, spiritual, physical, and yes, emotional. Hold the action or event up against these and see how it fits. Is it possible?

I think that's why so many of us are feeling overwhelmed and under appreciated. When we take on something new in our lives whether its babysitting for a friend, being the classroom helper every Friday, or planning a date night with another couple, we fail to look at the big picture of how this is going to play out against everything else that is already on the calendar.

This leads to a place where instead of planning our days according to God's plan: proactive, we spend our days reacting to all the requests of others. Yes, we are to be servants to all, but not every assignment is yours. God has a plan for your life. If you are too busy reacting to everyone else's plan for you, you might miss the joy in doing what God designed you to do.

God designed you for a purpose

Today, I encourage you to assess those obligations that are already on your calendar and see if any of them need to go. Hold them up to the resources mentioned and see if they can be done, making sure that you take the resource of your emotions into account.

Then pray and use scripture seeking God's direction. Keep the ones you know are part of God's plan for you and let go of those that are not.

As our verse says making decisions out of God's Wisdom and Knowledge will be life to our soul, and we need that infusion of His life in our soul so we can be empowered to live for His glory.


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Friday, October 7, 2016

Christ Colored Lenses - Bonita Y. McCoy

Proverbs 7:2 “Stay true to my directives, and they will serve you well; make my teachings the lens through which you see life."
(The Voice Bible)


Miss Vogt, my fifth grade teacher, wrote a note letting my parents know that I couldn't see

the blackboard. School hadn't been in session long, but everyday, by the end of the day, my head 

ached, and my eyes felt tired.

"She needs glasses," said the doctor. "She's near-sighted."
The lady in the outer office helped me pick out my first frames. Right off the bat, I noticed
pair that were blue like the sky with splashes of varying colors on the earpieces.
Rainbows - To me, they were beautiful.

But it was the lenses that made everything sharp, clear.

My world came into focus - I could see the blackboard now and knew what the assignments                 were I needed to do. I knew what time it was because I could see the clock on the wall.
I even knew when the teacher put my name on the board for misbehaving.

Because I looked through the right lenses, the ones that corrected my sight, my world took on             a clear, vibrant shape.
God's Word is the lens 
that focuses our lives.

That's how it is when we look through the lenses of God's teachings. 
We get a clear, correct picture.

We can see good gifts in times of hardship; we can see love when we are tried and pushed. We             can see God's hand moving when all looks to be at a stand still, and there appears to be no                   escape.

With God's teaching as our lens, we can see small as powerful, loyal as worthy, and simple as             wise.

Through Your teachings, may I see as You see.


Monday, October 3, 2016

Uninvited - Bonita Y. McCoy

The word uninvited has cropped up numerous times in my world over the last few weeks.
It's not a word I like. It goes against my world view of loving your fellow man and doing good to all especially those of the household of faith (Gal. 6:10).

Uninvited teems with negative, unkind, unloving connotations.

I recently came across it in an article about a Tibetan Monk who said, "When I was younger I was always called 'the uninvited guest of the universe'."  His mother had been unwed when he was born, and his birth had been an embarrassment to the family, so this was his nickname, uninvited.

The word also appeared as a title to a new book by Lysa Terkuerst, a Christian author.  The book was written to help women who do not feel welcomed by the world to feel welcomed by God. It is to point them to the one who loves unconditionally and forgives beyond measure.

Uninvited builds fences. It keeps people out.

Then later that week, I received an invitation to a wedding. I was an invited guest.
The door opened, and I was hugged and welcomed with joy.

I believe we are called to be the ones to welcome, to hug, to receive with joy.
I believe that unlike the monk who was considered the 'uninvited guest of the universe' we as Christ followers are called to be the inviters of the universe.

Jesus in Matthew 22 tells of a king who was giving a wedding banquet for his son. He had invited several guests who refused to come. So, the king sent out his servants (that's us) to invite anyone and everyone to fill his banquet room. Our job isn't to decide who is worthy to be invited, or job is simply to give the invitation.

Uninvited is a terrible state to be in, don't leave anyone feeling left on the fringes. Instead, invite them in and show them the way to the Father.  


Monday, September 26, 2016

Help is within a breath - Bonita Y. McCoy

The preacher says that help is only a breath away.

He is right. I forget some days.

 I have been trained too well to depend on self.  Too often, I don't call out for help until I think there is no other answer. Until I come to the end of me. 

But with a breath, I can call on the One who created all and is in all and holds all together (Col. 1:17).

His name is so like our breath. Breathe in and feel His life; breathe out and hear His name, YHWH  (Ann Voskamp).

We are blessed that we can whisper His name, and He hears us, forgives us, loves us.

I need to practice running to him first not last. I need to practice the art of praying without ceasing throughout the day moving the mundane into the holy by prayer. 

I need to practice hearing His name on my breath and recognizing it as a prayer of affirmation that He is God and I am not.

Help is there. He is there. Yoke yourself with the Lord for His is easy and His burden light.  Ours is heavy when we don't ask for help and try to do all the pulling ourselves.

The preacher is right. Help is only a breath away.


Monday, September 19, 2016

A Frame is Worth - Bonita Y. McCoy

A Frame is Worth a Thousand Attitudes...
"What he thinks is what he really is." Proverbs 23:7 (TEV)

You've heard the old adage a picture is worth a thousand words, but have you ever thought about the frame?

The frame is what guides your eye into the picture. It shows you what to focus on. It tells you where to put the emphasis.

In our walk with the Lord, we need to be careful how we frame our circumstances because how we think about them will determine our attitudes.  What we think will make us who we are.

If we forget that the Lord has everything in hand, that He is a giver of good gifts, and that even the trouble and suffering we encounter is tempered by Him, we may be tempted to grumble and complain. And yes, I'm talking to myself.  I'm probably the worst about this.

We might want to sulk or have a pity party about the things going on in our lives whether within our control or not.

But if we frame the circumstances of life within the context of God's precious promises, His comfort, His love, it changes the focus and our eyes move towards Him and not to the situations that we are walking through.

Pictures are beautiful, but frames direct. The next time you are feeling overwhelmed or worried try to frame the situation in the context of God's amazing grace and direct your thinking to that of worship, praise, thankfulness, and gratitude. Your confidence in the Lord will be a wonderful picture of His presence and peace.


Thursday, September 15, 2016

Friendships - Bonita Y. McCoy


The other day I was listening to a pod cast on the topic of dormant friendships and reviving them. I had been thinking about this around the same time that an old friend of mine reached out to me inviting me to lunch.

I was thrilled for the opportunity to visit and catch up.

Since then, the idea of friendship has been rolling around in my thoughts. I began to recognize that there are different, yet still important types of friendships.

There are those that are for a season. A friend who plays a particular part in your life for a time, but once that season is over, the friendship fades.

Then there are those that start when you are young and last throughout your entire life. They are the ones that you can go months, even years without seeing and pick up where you left off without missing a beat.

Others are those that come into our lives at the exact moment we need them. The ones we cannot deny were sent by God himself.

Then there is the one friendship that we have with Jesus, the one where we are His friends if we obey His commandment to love others as He has loved us. John 15: 12-14

This friendship goes beyond time. It is a forever friendship. He gave his life for us and then promised to never leave us nor forsake us.

With Jesus, it does not matter what season we are in; he will walk with us through them all.

Our friendships are a blessing and a wonderful example of God's grace towards us. Let's celebrate the friendships in our lives today and maybe reach out and rekindle one that might be dormant.

Monday, September 12, 2016

The Tides of Life - Bonita Y. McCoy

Photo by George Leonard

The Tides of life are carrying me forward whether I want to go or not. And often they are carrying me in directions I had not intended to go.

It's that way with families and plans and life. You start off with a handful of things that must be done today. Then, before you're even aware of it, you've drifted into a different direction, floated along with the commotion going on around you.

The sweet husband needs blue jeans washed - crash a new wave. The young creator wishes you would cut up the melon while he finishes school - a swirl rolls you around.  The dog lost his collar somewhere in the yard - you're picked up on the crest of the wave and rushed further from the other things, the planned things.

But if in the roar of the waves, you stop and seek the One who planned your day then even in the wild rushes of the water you will have peace.  He knows all your days before one is ever brought forth. He knows the plans He has for you, and they are good.

Mark 4: 37-41 (The Voice)
  As they sailed, a storm formed. The winds whipped up huge waves that broke over the bow, filling the boat with so much water that even the experienced sailors among them were sure they were going to sink....
"Jesus, Master, don't You care that we're going to die?"
He got up, shouted words into the wind, and commanded the waves. "That's enough! Be still!"
And immediately the wind died down to nothing, the waves stopped.

When the tides of life threaten to drown us, we can call out to the One who has power over the waves and the wind and the storm. We can seek Jesus' help.  We do not need to be afraid because we know the One who is faithful. He can speak peace into the roar of our hearts and calm the waves of turmoil within us. We can have peace through Christ even in the tides of life.



Wednesday, September 7, 2016

New Beginnings

New Beginnings

Delete, Delete, Delete

Have you ever "accidentally" deleted something?
Something that after you pushed that button, you wished you could get back?

Well, that's exactly what I did Sunday morning before church.

I clicked along through my e-mails on my phone. You know the type, the ones that think their sooo smart. 

I was looking for a particular e-mail but didn't find it. I did notice, however, that I had some mail in my spam and junk folders, so being the de-clutter bug that I am I deleted them. In my enthusiasm, I went to ALL MAIL and clicked away...

I gasped, shook the phone, and groaned as I melted into an e-mail-less puddle onto the couch.

I remained in that state for a few minutes. I think a medic would have declared me in shock.

Then I wanted to get angry; I wanted to yell at the phone for not being smart enough to retrieve my lost essentials.

But I didn't; I knew it was my own fault.
Time was pressing me forward. . I had to get ready for church.

So, I scooped myself up and tried to see the good in this situation.

It's something I've been trying to do lately, to exercise my what can I be thankful for muscle.

To be honest, this was like trying to do that 50th chin-up; I wasn't sure it could be done.
(For the record, I can't do one...)

But then in the middle of getting ready, a picture came into my mind.  I could see an empty trash can with a fresh clean liner, and this thought accompanied it: a new beginning.

I grabbed a hold of that thought and embraced it.  A new beginning.

No more old e-mails from 2014 hanging out waiting for me to decide what to do with them.
No more codes that I wrote down but was too timid to get rid of the original.
Nope, a nice clean slate.

God works like this too. We must do away with the old in order to be filled with the new.
Delete, Delete, Delete.

"Therefore, if anyone is united with the Anointed One, that person is a new creation. The old life is gone - and see - a new life has begun! All this is a gift from our Creator God, who has pursued us and brought us into a restored and healthy relationship with Him through the Anointed." 2 Corinthians 5:17-18 The Voice Bible.

Yes, we are new; we should celebrate our new life in Christ everyday. His forgiveness gives us that clean slate.

My e-mail box is not empty anymore. It has already started filling up again, but now, it is filled with the things that are relevant for this season. Just like my e-mail box, our lives will begin to fill up with the things of Christ as we delete the old life and seek to live in Him.

May God bless you and may you never delete all your e-mails.


Monday, September 5, 2016



"Place your trust in the Eternal; rely on Him completely; never depend upon your own ideas or inventions. Give Him the credit for everything you accomplish, and He will smooth out and straighten the road that lies ahead." The Voice Bible, Proverbs 3:5-6.

It's September.  Everyone is rushing off in different directions.
The under ten crowd headed back to school with new backpacks and crayons.  The teenagers are busy with sports, after school activities, and part-time jobs. Everyone is heading out - in a new direction, on a new road. It's what happens in September.

I'm on a new road too.  I call it the "What should I be doing now?" road.

I've hit that season of life where the road is taking a bend, and the Lord is leading me into new and different, a place along my path where I have never been. Yet, the strange thing is all that has come before this moment is helping to direct me into the next step.  

The Father promises throughout His Word to lead, guide, and direct us. And He always keeps His promises. He knows I am a wordy girl. He made me that way, so I know He is going to use my love of writing, photos, and all things English in whatever He calls me to do. My part is to seek Him and obey by taking the next step.

Life in the Father's kingdom is an adventure. You never know where the bend in the road will lead. You don't have to because He does. So, if you are like me and are in the place of "What next, Lord?", breathe. He knows the way, and what's around each bend that awaits you.

Oh, and if you hear someone behind you huffing and puffing, its me trying to remember to breathe

Blessings friend,

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Poured Out

Poured Out 

Jesus said "If any of you is thirsty, come to Me and drink. If you believe in Me, the Hebrew Scriptures say that rivers of living water will flow from within you." The Voice Bible.

These waters are not for us to keep. They must flow out and refresh the souls of others.

They must be poured forth from within us for change to come.

The living waters rushing forth from the Jesus within us to quench the thirst of His people, the people around us.  Then we become more like Jesus -

To be like Jesus is to be poured out.

Oswald Chambers said it best, "God spilt the life of His Son that the world might be saved."

Are we ready? Am I ready to live a poured out life. A spilt life. Allowing the rivers of living water to flow through me - to those who are thirsty.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Be Light

"We are light," said the keynote speaker at the American Christian Fiction Writers conference.

He reverberates what Jesus tells us in Matthew, "You are the light of the world."

Do not put that light under; in order to hide it.

Let us sit it up on a hill top -
Let us be light - out loud.

Speak words of light to a world washed over in darkness.

Speak light through words and actions. Let your light penetrate the darkness and bring glory to the Father.

"So men and women everywhere may see your good actions,
may see creation at its fullest, may see your devotion to Me,
and may turn and praise your Father in heaven because of it." The Voice Bible.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Broken Wing

Broken Wing

Through the lens, I see the broken wing of the butterfly. He is moving from flower to flower fulfilling his purpose. He is doing what he is designed to do, even with the brokenness of his wing. 

Aren't we like that butterfly? Broken yet meant for a purpose. Created to do those things that God pours into our lives. Being a wife, a husband, a mother, a father, a sister, or a brother. 

Not quite whole until God does His work, pours out His grace. He enables us to reach what we cannot reach alone. He allows us to bring glory to Him. 

He created each one with a purpose. With His grace even in the brokenness of life, we can fulfill that purpose. Paul once asked for a thorn in his flesh to be removed. An area of brokenness. But God said, "My grace is sufficient."

In our brokenness today, let us remember God is enough. 
His grace is sufficient. Even when our wings are broken, He can lift us up.


Thursday, August 18, 2016

Whispers of Grace

Whispers of Grace

The light creeps through the curtains. It rolls over the carpet and reaches me.   

A moment, stillness before the motion of the day begins.

Whispered words in the quiet of the kitchen. "Good morning. I love you." 

Everyone going. The rush of time begins. Snacks, a sip of coffee, someone starting on school. 

The back door closes.

I slip away to the quiet to meet with you. Here you are waiting. I open my Bible and look for you there in the pages. Words that hold promise.  You whisper, "Good morning, I love you."

And your mercy washes over me in the light of the new day. 

It is a warm embrace that holds hope and the assurance that You are with me.  You see my struggles. You will be close. "Do not fear." You say.

"I will not fear." I answer, "as long as You are with me."

My soul whispers it's longings to you, and you hear.

The back door closes. Smiles greet me. The sound of dishes clanking hovers above the other noises. I break into the motion of life in progress. "My confidence is in You." I say.

As the messiness of life rolls on across the carpet, the hardwood floors, the blades of grass.