Seeing life's events in the light of God's Word.

Baskets Full of Memories and Miracles


Matthew 14:20– “And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full.”



I have some pretty significant memories of baskets over the years: brightly-colored Easter baskets, a woven bicycle basket with a metal “bell,” the pauper’s basket on a small table at the church door.

We recently moved Mom and Dad into an assisted living facility. As we readied their longtime house for sale, we came across a basket that I had made at vacation Bible School as a young child. (photo above)

Just seeing it brought back fond memories of those long-ago days of learning Bible stories at church.

You might be surprised at how many of them involved baskets:

Moses hidden inside a specially-prepared basket in the river by his mother and then found and protected by Pharaoh’s daughter.

Saul, let down next to a wall in a basket by the disciples and saved from a throng seeking to kill him.

The basket of consecrations, the interpretation by Joseph of the chief baker’s dream, the basket of unleavened bread…

And among these is the familiar story of a small boy who shared his lunch of bread and fish, providing enough for a crowd of 5,000—with 12 baskets of food left over!

Baskets offering protection.

Baskets used to transport.

Baskets with which to gather and store.

This is the time of year when we are asked to fill baskets with food and clothing for those less fortunate. And when we do, may God bless them, as he did the boy’s lunch, and multiply our simple gifts to bless others—to overflowing!

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Giving Our Best




Proverbs 3:9-10  “Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and  your vats will brim over with new wine.”

Thinking back over the years to when I taught elementary school, I recall the long hours spent in preparation for my classes before and after school, as well as at home. I’d come home dog-tired, grab a bite to eat, and rush off to night classes.

Life was a vicious cycle.

It wasn’t God, nor my family, but my job that got the best part of me.

At the time I reasoned that was just the way it had to be, but now I am embarrassed to say that my priorities just weren’t right.

The Bible speaks about the “first fruits” of what a person earns as being what they should give to the Lord. You may be more familiar with the term “tithing”—giving God the first ten percent of our income.

But, for a moment, let’s consider the concept of “first fruits” in a different way—giving God the first thoughts in our day, the most of our energy instead of the dregs at the bottom of our reservoir.

Instead of giving our Lord the leftovers, humbly offering Him the best of us.

The words to a song we used to sing as kids says is best. “My cup is full and running over,” reminds me that the joy He brings us as we seek Him first—as we spend time with Him first—leads not to a lack later on, but rather to an overabundance—in other areas in our lives.

A rich, full life is one that gives to Him that first breath, that first song in the morning, and then looks quickly for an umbrella because

there’s going to be a downpour of blessings in a life that gives Him our best.

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No Sour Grapes

Habakkuk 3:17,18-    Though the fig tree does not bud

and there are no grapes on the vines,

though the olive crop fails

and the fields produce no food,             4734900182_b15ffd1ce0

though there are no sheep in the pen

and no cattle in the stalls,

yet I will rejoice in the Lord,

I will be joyful in God my Savior.



We recently moved into a new home. Due to time constraints on all sides, we moved in before our renovations had been completed.

Nearly three weeks later, we still have no master bath or kitchen.

I fell off a ladder; our dining room light crashed in the middle of the night; a hammer fell off the top of a ladder when my husband was moving it, hitting him in the head. And so the saga, began…

Some days I am stressed out and ask God, “Why?” and other days I remember that He has blessed us with a beautiful desert home that is tranquil and serene—or will be!!

This verse from Habakkuk has encouraged me, in the past, when financial times were hard. Now, it speaks to the difficulties of our move. (Who says the Bible isn’t applicable to modern day circumstances?)

So, though I have no master bathtub or shower, though the kitchen granite doesn’t match at the seam lines and needs to be redone, though our king size bed didn’t fit in the new bedroom and we’ve slept on a mattress on the floor for several weeks, though the plumber suspended his work in the bathroom to go on vacation, and the tile guy is in the hospital with kidney stones, though I am washing dishes in the bathroom sink and have no stove or water in the kitchen, I will rejoice in God my Savior who protects us and blesses us with many good restaurants nearby, kind friends to help, and the promise of a vacation for ourselves some time this summer…



Frustration or Blessing?

Matthew 22:17-21

17 Tell us, therefore, what do You think? Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?”18 But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, “Why do you test Me, you hypocrites? 19 Show Me the tax money.” So they brought Him a denarius.20 And He said to them, “Whose image and inscription is this?”21 They said to Him, “Caesar’s.” And He said to them, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”





Hard to believe it is almost time to file.

After an appointment with our accountant, we learned that we owe—again.

How can that be?

Every year?


My husband relates that his coworkers get refunds…repeatedly… tax season after tax season.

Do they know something we don’t?

“Make quarterly payments,” our accountant replies.

It’s not like we don’t have mortgage and charitable deductions.

It’s not like we rely on our own expertise in filing.

Even in Jesus’s time, questions regarding taxes were front and foremost.

This year, instead of shaking our heads in disbelief or giving into the frustrations associated with taxes, we have chosen to count our blessings and be thankful for the abundance with which God has blessed us…

April 15…

A day to count our blessings.

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Giving Thanks for Future Blessings

Romans 8:28- “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

Occasionally, I find myself missing my days of teaching elementary school. This is especially true around Thanksgiving.

Each year, my little kindergarteners would choose to be Indians or Pilgrims, making Pilgrim hats or headbands with colorful feathers. They would use brown paper grocery bags to make Indian vests or black and white butcher paper for Pilgrim attire.

Mothers would come to school and help us prepare stew, cornbread, apple cider, and spice cake and/or cookies for our customary “feast.”

The faces of those little ones were so precious as each child stood and told the class what they were thankful for… their families…their homes.

I know several families who are currently suffering from health issues. I know one going through a divorce. I know one dealing with broken relationships with siblings; another saddened by the estrangement of adult children.

It’s easy to be thankful for blessings like wealth, wisdom, newborn babies, and good health. It’s quite another to be thankful for the trials in this life, isn’t it?

But, many of us know that it’s in the hard times that we learn to trust God…that our relationship with Him deepens as we depend on Him for the strength to get us through.

It’s possible, that years after a hurtful event, we are able to see the good result(s) God brings about because of our dire circumstances. In fact, there are times when we can look back on what we once viewed as tragedies and see that they were actually future blessings—in disguise.

Which brings me to this point: If we, as Christians, believe the truth of Romans 8:28, shouldn’t we be able to trust God now?

Even if we never see the future?

Even if He never answers our question, “Why?”

Because that is really what faith is, isn’t it?

According to Hebrews 11:1, “…faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

We may not be able to see what God is going to do with a tragic circumstance, now, but we can have faith that those “things not seen” will someday come to pass.

Thanking God for the blessings in our lives, today, and for those in the future,


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“A Life Yielded To A Greater Calling”

Romans 12:1- (From The Message) So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. 

This weekend, in Tempe Arizona, The 11th Annual Pat’s Run was attended and supported by thousands of people from the United States. The 4.2 Mile Run/Walk, sponsored by the Tillman Foundation, was established in 2004 after Pat Tillman was killed serving in the US Army in Afghanistan. The foundation now raises money for educational scholarships for military veterans and their families.

What has caught the attention of so many, is that Pat put his career with the Arizona Cardinals on hold to serve his country in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. Dave McGinnis, former Arizona Cardinals head coach is quoted on the foundation’s website as saying about Pat’s sacrifice, “He proudly walked away from a career in football to a greater calling.”

As Christians, Jesus calls us to sacrifice our time, talents, skills, money—and yes, sometimes even our lives—for the sake of the gospel. In all reality, there may be another way you’d like to spend your money, rather than tithe it to your church or donate it to a charity. You may have a cruise planned, but God may prompt you to spend your two-week vacation building homes for the disadvantaged or volunteering at a local shelter. You may have been saving for a destination wedding or a family reunion, but the Holy Spirit may lead you to leave your personal dream behind and follow His call to a small village in Africa and adopt a homeless child.

Living sacrifices are those we make when we take our focus off of ourselves and what we want, placing our desires in the hands of Jesus who is able to use our gifts for His eternal purposes. We find that when we say yes to His call on our lives will will reap blessings beyond measure. As we act in obedience to His Word, we will grow in our relationship with Him. We will begin to see the world as He sees it. We will begin to live a life that is beyond ourselves—a life that truly can reach around the world and touch lives we would never have dreamed possible.

A life yielded to a greater calling.


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