Great Jumpin’ Jehoshaphat

When I woke up on my birthday recently I started to think about a thought I’d read from an old journal the night before but was too tired to think about.  I’d written that I had been thinking about all of God’s blessings to me and I thought, ‘Wow, you know what I would need a semi-truck for all of them to fit into.  But then in my head I saw a fast little sports car zoom up.

In Matthew 5 Jesus said we are blessed, we are to be happy when people lie about us for His names sake.  I’ve had people lie about me to others, but it wasn’t for the sake of Jesus, it was more of a personal nature.  

But if I respond to the situation how Jesus wants me to, now that is for the sake of Jesus.  

Jesus also says in Matthew 5, “Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God.  Usually if we need to make peace there are not so peaceful circumstances around us and generally that doesn’t feel like a blessing.  

But here’s the question; Have we made peace with our circumstances?

When I first experienced someone spreading lies about me I wanted to stand up and proclaim to the world the truth of the situation and let everyone know I hadn’t done anything of the sort.  But then I realized people had heard the lie first and it’s hard to hear a juicy bit of gossip and not believe it.  If someone asked me about the situation, I would tell them the truth, but outside of that I decided I knew the truth and the truth didn’t change despite what people said or thought, so I let it go, in essence I guess, making peace with my circumstances.

Recently I’ve added a new perspective to my outlook of being lied about.  I don’t have to run around trying to defend myself because it is God who fights for me.  The Bible has multiple stories where God does the fighting.  The Israelites marching around Jericho and after seven days the walls came tumbling down.  And my favorite Bible story in 2 Chronicles 20 where a massive army is marching towards Israel and God tells them not to fight in the battle because it is not their’s but HIS.  

King Jehoshaphat made peace with his circumstances and did what God told him to do.  


Sometimes our circumstances are just begging us to complain about them.  But there is no peace in complaining. Think about the things you complain about and how you could make peace with you circumstances.  Making peace with your circumstances doesn’t mean  your circumstances will change, but it does mean you will have a new perspective of who God is and how His wisdom surpasses our own.  Sort of like driving a fast little sports car through a steep mountain climb and zooming right past the semi truck.  


Let’s take a look at the man Noah in the Bible.  He certainly could have had plenty to complain about.  His family was blessed right?  They were the only ones saved from the flood.  But at the same time his life seemed like one that could certainly be complained about.  First of all the whole building of the ark; it took 120 YEARS.  Then all the preaching to everyone else about God sending a flood and trying to convince other people to get in the boat and be saved from the flood.  But after 120 of hearing the message no one else chose to enter the ark.  And all the scoffing the other’s did for 120 years.  To be made fun of for 120 years and all that time to still preach God’s words and invite everyone into the ark.  Noah had certainly made peace with his circumstances. And once they were on the ark all the feeding and caring of the animals.  The waiting during the storm, the waiting to hit dry ground, the waiting for the water’s to recede enough for a bird to finally bring them an olive leaf and waiting even longer for God to tell them they could now leave the boat.  

I have to hand it to Noah, he could see the dry land, he could see the olive leaf the dove brought him, but he did not rush ahead of God and leave the boat before God told him to.  

While we may think it would have been easy for Noah’s family to complain, I’m guessing they had pretty heavy hearts over the loss of all the people they knew.  All the people Noah had preached to for 120 years and no doubt prayed for for 120 years.  All those who almost said yes, but didn’t.  It puts a different perspective on all the rain, and all the work of caring for the animals and all the waiting. 

But Noah didn’t wait without hope, he waited with a purpose, trusting God’s timing for when to leave the boat even though he could see dry land outside.  This is Noah making peace with his circumstances, accepting God’s wisdom as greater than his own and zooming past that semi truck in a fast little sports car and before he knows it he can’t even see the semi truck in his rear view mirror any more. 


Road Signs on the Journey of Life

Be still and know that I am God… Psalms 46:10 NIV

There is something that has been lost in today’s modern culture that was more of a thing when I was growing up: the family vacation trip.  Hitting the road in a wood paneled station wagon may sound like something from a cheesy movie comedy, but it was an actual experience for a lot of us growing up in the 60’s and 70’s. And one thing for sure that happens on those trips is that you get to know your family and yourself.  Yessir, if you want to really know someone, take a trip with them.  The journey will bring things out in those you travel with and yourself that you may never have known.  Journeys can be like that; revealing. I think that’s why God takes us on so many of them in our life, He wants us to know Him and ourselves. 

Who is God?” and “Who am I?”.  Isn’t that in essence what the serpent insinuated when he tempted Eve with the fruit?  Who are you? Who is God really?  Can you trust Him?  Do you believe Him?  Are you sure?  Why?  

God wants to take us on a trip through His heart.  A place to reveal who He is to us and in the revealing of who He is, who we are is revealed as well.  


Now, if you take a road trip something you are going to see an abundance of are road signs. The good people of the federal government have taken the time and spent the money to put up all these road signs meant to help guide us and keep us safe as we travel along the highways and byways. Isn’t it interesting that after all that time and effort to make those signs and erect them all over the country in just the right places, we seem to pay so little attention to them. There are times I’ll be driving along and Aspen will point out a road sign, say a speed limit sign, and reference it to the velocity we happen to be traveling at. My laze faire reaction communicates to her the idea that those signs are there for other people, and isn’t a good thing we have them for those people who need them and thank goodness we aren’t one of them…we’re “special”.

More than once in my life I have seen a ‘slow down there’s a curve coming up sign” with a suggested speed for me to go based on the tightness of the curve.  I gauge the angle of the curve by what I can see and I don’t always slow down to the suggested speed.  Ok, to be honest I never slow down to the suggested speed.  Sometimes it works out just fine and I bend around the curve at 10 or so miles over the suggested speed.  But there are the times I go into the curve based on what I can see at 10 mph over the suggested speed and I end up hitting the breaks to slow myself down.  Because it wasn’t just the curve I could see, but multiple curves, all of them tighter curves than the original first one I could see.  The people who created the sign and posted it for my safety knew what the road ahead held for me because they had been there.  I, on the other hand, made my choices based only on what I could see, which isn’t always a good idea.  

Now, lets apply this spiritually to our lives. Like we said earlier, God takes us on a lot of trips in our lives, but all are part of the big journey through His heart to reveal Himself to us and us to ourselves.  And, better than the federal government, God has given us signs along this journey to guide us and keep us safe. We can compare road signs to Gods words in our lives.  And God’s road signs don’t only give directions, they also reveal who He is and who He is changes us.  But will I believe that the One who put up the sign knew what lay ahead on the road or will I believe those signs are for the “other” people who really need them?  

One of the signs He reveals at just the right place is the above mentioned “Slow Down Curves Ahead.” Have you been on that stretch of road in your life? Where life seems to all of a sudden have one curve after then next and each one a little sharper than the last? It is my choice to either go into the curves of life faster than the suggested speed limit or  believe that the One who put the sign up knew what lay on the road ahead and slow down accordingly. I can live my life based on what I can see, or I can live my life believing Gods words are true and slow down. He knows what lies ahead even though I can’t see.  

living out a loving relationship with Jesus is living out His words. 

If you have been listening to our little broadcast lately, you probably have picked up that we are currently having a fascination with the life of Abraham.  It’s really cool how many things we can see and learn from his life and experience with God.  It’s easy to see how he earned his title of Father of the Faith. His journey with God is no different than ours. God planted various road signs into his life journey just like He does for us.   The road signs are an invitation into the heart of God. Lets take a look at a few of them. 

Green Light

Green light. Green means go and this is the first sign God pops up for Abraham. God gives him the green light and tells him to leave his homeland and “go somewhere”.  But every time God tells us to “go somewhere” He is asking us to come and follow Him.  Again, He wants to take us on a trip through His heart.  The place where we discover who He is and who we are.

Sometimes we have preconceived ideas of who God is and who we are, but the deeper we go into the heart of God the more truth we find.  

Truth sets us free from our preconceived ideas.  Our preconceived ideas of who we are or should be is like a mask we wear.  A mask of deceit.  But when we follow God into the truth of His heart the mask comes off because God reveals the truth of who we are.  

Abraham did believe God promised to make him the father of many nations. (Genesis 17:4)  but he deceived himself into believing Ishmael, a son he provided for himself, was God’s promised son to him.  And that takes us to the next road signal that pops us on Abraham’s journey-a great big Stop Sign.  

Stop Sign    

Don’t you hate Stop signs? I tell Aspen all the time at red lights, stop signs and long lines of traffic, “I hate waiting.” It seems Abraham and Sarah got tired of waiting as well and didn’t proceed with caution. They barreled through the curves and brought about Ishmael. God tells Abraham Ishmael is not the promised son. Big, red, octagonal Stop sign!  God is telling him to stop believing the lie he created. When God puts up the stop sign, it is time for me to stop doing what I think is the right thing and to start doing what God says is the right thing.

Can you imagine the thoughts running through Abraham’s head?  First of all he has to be excited for the promised son.  Second, he must feel bad for Ishmael because he is the oldest son and yet he is not the promised son so he will have to give up his place of inheriting all that is Abrahams.  It must hurt to think of hurting his beloved son.  And third God has revealed a blind spot in his life.  And the bright light of truth shining into our blind spot is painful.  

There he was cruising along just fine through those curves he should have slowed down for. Maybe he had a motorcycle or a car designed to handle the curves at high speeds.  He was enjoying the wind in his hair and the success of his son.  God was good and he believed it with all his soul. And then God pops up the stop sign.  STOP. Those white letters on a red octagon sign.  There’s no mistaking it.  STOP.  

There are times despite God’s stop signs we want to keep on going.  We can’t see why we shouldn’t.  Everything looks fine up ahead and we can’t see anything dangerous.  And yet the sign says STOP and the light stays red.  God knows the path He has prepared for us. When the stop sign goes up, it is a time to be still and know God. A time to stop because it is the best way to move forward.  


There are many other signs that Abraham encounters along this journey God is taking with him, and we can’t talk about them all, but a really big one comes towards the end of the trip and it’s a really hard one: a big yellow and black “YIELD” sign. You know that one, right? It usually means waiting yourself and letting someone else go ahead of you. Yield is a hard one for me.  I’m cruising along ahead of the pack, all those “other” drivers behind me and all of a sudden I have to slow down, put myself aside, and let others in front of me. Basically putting my will aside for the good of everyone. That’s kind of what God did.  He tells Abraham to offer his promised son, who he loves with all his heart, soul and mind, as a sacrifice to Him.  This is a yield sign and a big one. Time to yield to the will of God.  But it is hard to yield to the will of a humble God’s heart when pride offers us the prize of doing what we want to do.  And here for Abraham that was wanting to NOT offer his son as a sacrifice. 

But over the course of Abraham’s life his everyday living out the words of God, learning to stop, go and yield to God’s road signs, his reliance on the power of God at work in his life became stronger and deeper. His faith in God’s GPS for his life became stronger and stronger till finally he reached the point where he could trust the directions God was giving him even though he could not see what lay ahead. He didn’t know how God’s plan would work out, only that He trusted that it would because he now knew himself and God deeper than ever before. Isn’t that what God wants for all of us in our life journey with Him?

We are all going to have times in our journeys where God says “Go”, “Yield”, “Stop”, “Proceed with caution,” “Rough road ahead”…but all of those experiences He promises to travel with us and are meant to know Him better, ourselves better, and trust His plan and direction for our lives and His GPS that will bring us home.

Sword of the Spirit

Truth swings the sword of peace with practiced skill


Sarai worried she wasn’t in the right place at the right time.  A son had been promised to her husband Abram.  But 10 years after the original promise and past the age of physically being able to have children Sarai believes she is not in the right place at the right time and so she sets about changing her burdens into joy.  

But she learns God does not need her help.  All her hard work and planning only created more burdens and less joy.  She heard the clock ticking and tocking telling her she was old, she was out of time, she was late to the party, but she learned she was exactly where God wanted her to be in each moment of time.  Each moment of time a place to wait on God to change her burdens into His glory. 


Psalm 23:5 

He prepares a table before me in the presence of my enemies.

When we are in the presence of our enemies we tend to have one of two reactions; fight or flight.

Both fight and flight are inspired by fear. 

But when I’m all ready to stand and fight or run away God invites me to sit down at the table He has prepared for me and hands me a menu.  But the question this texts begs to answer is, “What is on the menu”?  Isn’t that the important part of choosing which restaurant we want to go to?  What’s on the menu?  And how expensive is it plays into our decision of where we eat as well. 

When God prepares the table He puts on it everything we need.


The answer to the question begging to be answered in vs 5 was given in the verse before it. 

“You are with me, Your rod and Your staff they comfort me”. 

The shepherd used the rod to defend the sheep from their enemies and the staff to nudge it back on the path or pull it out of stuck places.  We don’t need a fight or flight reaction to the presence of our enemies because the Good Shepherd carries the rod to fight for us.  

The one and only menu item, prepared in a thousand different ways, on the table God prepares for us in the presence of our enemies is “Love”.  Because perfect love casts out fear. (1 John 4:18)  When fear is gone, I can sit down at the table God has prepared for me and feast on all of the fruits of the Spirit God has for me; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23) And when I take up my shield of faith which extinguishes all the flaming arrows of the evil one, including fear, (Ephesians 6:10-17) the Good Shepherd fights for me in a spiritual battle in the heavenly realms where I can’t see.  

When I live by faith, I believe my fighting for myself is useless and it doesn’t gain me anything in fact it puts me in debt.  

On the other hand when the enemy shows up he hands us a menu also and everything served is deep fried in fear.  And we do loooove deep fried food, don’t we?  All the crunchy yummy goodness of it can be a real addiction.  

The enemy serves up plenty of worry.  His table and menu abound in plenty of “If I don’t have” and “If I don’t do” and we are fearful that if we don’t do or don’t have what he offers we will not be the person we think we need to be.  

The most expensive menu item is “I Must Fight For Myself”.  But when I fight for myself, my perception of the free love of God for me given to me by His grace and mercy, gets changed and it feels far too expensive to do because it means giving up fighting for myself and letting God fight for me.  

Fear requires us to carry weapons of self defense.  They hurt others and harden our hearts to the antidote of fear; Love. 


Let’s go back to Sarai.  Sarai stood in the land of “No Promised Son”.  She is past the age of having children. She can see the land of “I Have My Promised Son” on the other side of her personal Jordan River, but she can’t see the way across. The waters are at flood stage and there is no chance of them receding…ever. 

Sarai read the menu the enemy hands her and believes that if she doesn’t order a huge helping of “I Fight For Myself” and do something about it she will never have the son God promised.  

She decides to build her own bridge across the river of water stopping her from having her promised son.  Now just to be clear, the bridge was already there, built by God Himself.  But Sarai ordered from the menu the enemy handed her and she couldn’t see the bridge God had built.  Because fear stops us from living by faith and faith helps us believe the promises of God we can not yet see. (Hebrews 11:1)  

The bridge was there and it would be revealed to her at the pre-appointed time.  

Sarai plotted and planned her promised son, but receiving him brought her no joy, no satisfaction.  In fact it made her life more miserable rather than full of more joy.  “I Must Fight For Myself” is expensive and puts us into debt.

Our Good Shepherd is a Warrior of Peace.  He swings His sword of peace with practiced skill putting fear to death for us.  We can never get rid of fear by feasting from the enemy’s menu.     


I am a warrior of peace. I fight on your behalf so that My peace will reign in your heart. The battle is won when you seek Me first. A heart that desires Me first always wins the battle. 

From sun up to sundown the battles rages across the whole earth. The thing is most turn to idols of peace they have built themselves. Self is not to be trusted because peace given by the enemy is trickery. It gives the power to overcome to self and the heart is deceitfully wicked. 

Hearts full of self and lies from the evil one can only do battle within itself creating self destruction. 

Ephesians 2:8-9 NASB

For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not a result of works, so that no one may boast.

1 John 4:18  

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.

Hebrews 11:1 NASB

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.

Ephesians 6:10-17 NIV

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

From Darkness to Light

Silent summer night

Porch swing creaks

Crickets chirp

A dog barks

My thoughts join the stars

They leap

They dance

They hesitate

I yawn

Take them to bed

And put them to rest

Until the morning light

Shines bright 

God’s pure love

Spread out

In living color

And the fears

In the dark

Have no place to hide

Now all the steps I learned 

In the dark

Will carry me forward

Into my day

The Passion of Mercy

Today we look at a small snapshot of Lot leaving the city of Sodom.


Genesis 19:16When he hesitated, the men grasped his hand and the hands of his wife and of his two daughters and led them safely out of the city, for the Lord was merciful to them. 

I want you to remember the word merciful. Because without Gods mercy towards us we would not have God’s salvation.  We CAN BE thankful for Gods mercy towards us.  HOWEVER, in the story of Lot, when mercy show up, she does not appear to him to be the kind gentle soul he probably always thought she was. Mercy had not shown up to be a gentle comforter, but a desperate and earnest arbiter of action to separate Lot from his sin and coming destruction.


From the book, The Prodigal God, by Timothy Keller.  “The word “prodigal” does not mean “wayward” but, according to Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, “recklessly spendthrift.” It means to spend until you have nothing left.” That is exactly what Lot did. You might be wondering how that could be true because Lot was a rich man. He entered Sodom as a wealthy man became even more wealthy while there. You see, Lot recklessly spent the most valuable thing he had: time. He recklessly spent his time, his actions, his desires on stuff rather than on a relationship with God. As a result, he ended up leaving Sodom with less than he entered with…a lot, nothing.

Lot was a prodigal based on the Merriam-Webster’s collegiate Dictionary definition of prodigal: recklessly spendthrift; meaning to spend until you have nothing left.  Lot spent recklessly until he had nothing left.  In the effort to get more, he ended up getting nothing.  He left Sodom with less than he entered it with. He recklessly spent his actions, his time, his desires, on STUFF, rather than on a  relationship with God.  

Years before when Lot and Abraham parted ways because the land could not support both of them and their workers couldn’t get along Lot chose to move closer to Sodom.  I imagine pride stood at Sodom’s gate and beckoned him to come in with the lie pride always tells us; I will make you great. 

Sometimes we think once we achieve a certain level of “greatness” or “having” of whatever it is we deem necessary to be “great” that we will have “arrived” at our life’s destination.  But it’s a bit like when I was a kid. When my older sister was 10, I was 9 and I would think, “Wow, when I’m 10 I’ll be so grown up just like my sister”.  I continued to think every year if I could only be the age of my sister I would be so grown up!  But every year went by and despite turning another year older my goal was never met, because my older sister also kept turning a year older and moving the goal post.  It was a never-ending cycle of never being able to reach my goal, to feel I had finally arrived.

Picture Lot standing outside Sodom’s gate and pride inviting him in promising to make him great.  Now fast forward to Lot standing outside the gates of Sodom again, this time empty handed because he spent his actions, time, and desires on stuff rather than a relationship with God.  Pride took his actions, time and desires and invested them in a lie.  Pride promised greatness if he did more and had more.  Lot did more and had more, but the goal post kept being moved and it was never enough. He would never arrive to a place of satisfaction and peace.

We can only imagine the emotional turmoil in Lot’s heart when he stood outside of Sodom’s gate with nothing but his wasted time, wasted desires and wasted actions all stored up on earth awaiting the time to become smoke and ashes and the realization of having spent his life living a lie.  

Lot added up his stuff and assumed he was great.  Abraham added up his stuff and knew that God was great.  And yet God, in his great mercy to Lot, showed up and offered him mercy.  I’m sure it did not seem the kind of mercy Lot would have liked to receive.  It seems sometimes we get ourselves into a bit of a jam due to living out lies, but we don’t want to be separated from our lie, we just want the great God of mercy to have mercy on us and help us out of the jam. But, just like Lot, Mercy isn’t there just to comfort and confirm God’s love for us, Mercy also is there to help separate us from the sin and save us from destruction.

We haven’t looked at all of the players in the life of Abraham yet, but we have looked at Abraham, Hagar and now Lot.  Each has been faced with a moment of mercy from God intervening in their lives.  The moment when God digs deep and gives them the opportunity to live out a loving relationship with Him.  The opportunity to store up treasure in heaven rather than on earth.   

In Psalm 23 David says, “my cup runneth over”.  Everything that happened before he said “my cup runneth over” was all of the things the Good Shepherd did to care for the sheep.  The shepherd did all, the sheep did nothing.  Directly after saying, “my cup runneth over”, David says, “surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life”.  That is the mercy God has in abundance for us every single day of our lives.

Learning Like Lot

You are are safer in a rowboat with God in the worst of storms with no land in sight than you are standing on dry ground on the most beautiful of days without Him.  


Quite a number of years ago by now, I suppose long enough ago we could have been considered “young”, my husband was flying into the Denver airport.  If you have never flown into Denver, it is known for its somewhat turbulent landings.  But this flight into Denver the fog hung still and thick in the air.  My husband sat in a window seat and could not see the end of the airplane wings because they were obscured by the fog.  

The speaker crackled and the captain announced the plane would be landing soon.  After coasting through the air for a few more minutes the plane gave a sharp jolt to it’s passengers.  The passengers gasped with fearful surprise hoping something terrible hadn’t just happened with them along for the ride. They sighed with silent relief when they realized it was only the pre-announced landing. But until the wheels hit the ground, the ground could not be seen.  

Life is like that sometimes. 


When we moved to Lincoln NE, about 9 years ago God clearly provided the house we moved into and stayed living in until we moved to Texas 7 years later.  In March of 2020 Brett’s job, along with others, was downsized.  We thought it would be fun to move out of the house, put our stuff in storage and take a trip up the Alcan to Alaska.  We had no solid plan after that, but with seven months of severance pay we hoped for another job sooner than later.  

Our brilliant plan fell apart when Covid shut down the United States/Canada border one month later in April.  We decided to stay in our house and see what happened.  We planned moving several times, but none of them worked out for various reasons. Turns out we lived in the house God originally provided for us for seven months past our seven months of severance pay.  

So in the end, what felt like something was holding us back was, when we could see the whole thing in retrospect, a time where we ended up at the place we were headed towards from the beginning; we just couldn’t see the landing.  


Today we are taking a closer look at Lot, his lack of faith and briefly using the stories of Jesus calming the storm and walking on water to help round things out.  We are always safer in a rowboat with God in the worst of storms with no land in sight than we are standing on dry ground on the most beautiful of days without Him.  


Genesis 19:16-21

16 When he hesitated, the men grasped his hand and the hands of his wife and of his two daughters and led them safely out of the city, for the Lord was merciful to them. 17 As soon as they had brought them out, one of them said, “Flee for your lives! Don’t look back, and don’t stop anywhere in the plain! Flee to the mountains or you will be swept away!”

18 But Lot said to them, “No, my lords, please! 19 Your servant has found favor in your eyes, and you have shown great kindness to me in sparing my life. But I can’t flee to the mountains; this disaster will overtake me, and I’ll die. 20 Look, here is a town near enough to run to, and it is small. Let me flee to it—it is very small, isn’t it? Then my life will be spared.” 21 He said to him, “Very well, I will grant this request too; I will not overthrow the town you speak of. 


We see God taking care of Lot and his family and yet we also see Lot doing his best to take care of himself.  If we stop to think about it, no god has as much power as God and yet we put our faith and trust and hopes and belief into other things. In this situation Lot puts his faith, hope and trust in an “independent I can do it attitude”. 

But can you imagine Lot’s independent ‘I can take care of myself’ attitude showing up to drag him out of Sodom, out of his destruction?  Of course not, because instead it would be working hard to keep him there.  But God drags Lot and his family out of Sodom and then tells them to run to the mountains.  Instead of being thankful and hurrying on his way Lot goes into his “do it myself and save myself mode”.  And he says, ‘well instead of going to the mountains like You want me to I’d rather go over to this other sinful city nearby and stay there so I can take care of myself’.  

Take a close look at this situation.  The angels have taken Lot and his family by the hands and hurried them out of the city.  Lot knows his stuff is going up in smoke and will be nothing but ashes.  But he appears to be worried God will not be able to take care of him.  Maybe he is in a bit of shock because he also seems to believe he can take better care of himself by staying in another sinful city than by going to the mountains where God has told him to go.   

It makes sense that God, who is saving our lives, should also know the best way for us to live our lives.  

Have you ever tried to improve upon Gods plan for you?  Just tweak it a little?  Maybe 

you can’t think of any good reasons to forgive the person who offended you.  And prayer?  Yes Jesus said to pray, but its kind of boring isn’t it?  (It isn’t but maybe we can talk about that another time.) Maybe telling the truth is not always to our advantage.   And so our whole lives become living out a lie and when God tries to lead us out of living by faith in self to living by faith in Him, we hesitate. 

The story of Jesus calming the storm walks hand in hand with the story of Lot being led out of Sodom.  On one hand we have the disciples in the midst of a hellacious storm in a fishing boat with Jesus asleep and they have forgotten He is there and frantically try to save themselves.   

On the other hand we have Lot led out of the city with his wife, two children, and his life.  But when the angel tells him to flee to the mountains he worries about how he will survive.  

But despite their worries and their teetering circumstances the disciples were safer in a rowboat in the storm with Jesus than if they were standing on dry ground on a perfectly sunny day. 

And Lot and his family were safer outside the city fleeing to the mountains with nothing to sustain them and Gods instructions than inside the city with all of their stuff.  

We find the story of Jesus walking on water in John 6:16-21. The disciples see Him through the storm and  are afraid thinking He is a ghost, but when they realize it is Jesus they let Him get into the boat. The Bible says they were immediately at their destination.  John 6:21 “Then they were willing to take him into the boat, and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading.”

Sometimes we think the storms in life are slowing us up.  I’m guessing maybe the disciples should have arrived at their destination by the time that Jesus joined them, but the storm held them up.  But often the times of our life spent in the dark and the storm  prepare us for our destination and the storm does not stop us from arriving at the time we were supposed to arrive.  

The storm looked a little different to Lot.  It could well have been a perfectly sunny day there in Sodom as he stood outside the gate with the storm of losing all he had worked so hard to gain.  We don’t know how long it took him to realize that was pretty much one of the best day of his life.  But in 2 Peter 2:7 Peter calls Lot a righteous man.  

Righteousness is a journey taken on the path of righteousness led by our Good Shepherd Jesus.  


I want you to remember you are are safer in a rowboat with God in the worst of storms with no land in sight than you are standing on dry ground on the most beautiful of days without Him.  


I wrote a bit of prose the other day which goes along with this thought so I’ll  share it here for anyone who enjoys a little poetry.

Silent summer night

Porch swing creaks

Crickets chirp

A dog barks

My thoughts join the stars

They leap

They dance

They hesitate

I yawn

Take them to bed

And put them to rest

Until the morning light

Shines bright 

God’s pure love

Spread out

In living color

And the fears

In the dark

Have no place to hide

Now all the steps I learned 

In the dark

Will carry me forward

Into my day


Smokey and the Bandit


I attended a Bible study class where a man asked, “Where is the line between letting God do all or do I just dig in, resist, and fight temptation on my own?” Nobody in the class had a solid answer and to be honest I had been wondering through the same thing myself. 

In studying through the story of Abraham I have found an illustration that satisfies my search for an answer to the man’s question. 

Today we are going to start out with a simple story; a story that illustrates Abraham offering his son Isaac as a sacrifice and the power of God who showed up with the true sacrifice.  


Back in the late ‘70’s the movie “Smokey and the Bandit” made the Pontiac Trans Am a must have cool car. A couple of my cousins, who were brothers, each bought a black Trans Am with the t-top roof. 

I had another cousin who told me the following story.  He and these two brothers were hanging out in North Dakota, the vast flat land my relatives as part of the Germans from Russia movement came to and settled as farmers.  These young men, with time to waste on their hands, decided to take the Trans Am’s out for some fun.  

In order to correctly imagine the following illustration you should know that all of the roads in North Dakota are straight.  It seems you could drive on forever and never make a turn and if you make a turn onto another road you will continue on in another direction going as straight as if you had never turned. 

My cousins drove the cars out onto the freeway and basically let go of the reins. They ran the cars down the highway neck and neck at 150 mph. My cousin, who told me the story, said the car was shaking as they raced down the road.  The word “shaking” probably doesn’t describe the situation accurately.  As he told me the story I got the impression the shaking and the noise of the tires on the pavement along with the sound of the engine were not something for the faint of heart to experience. Probably 50 some years later as he shared the experience he seemed glad he had lived through it and could now sit in a peaceful quiet setting and tell the story. 

Basically my cousins watched the movie and bought into the idea they needed a Trans Am with the t-top. 

We have the opportunity to look at God and buy into the idea we need Him.  

Next they each bought the Trans Am and now they physically had the car and a set of keys. But imagine if they got in the car and rather than putting the key in the ignition and turning it they sit there in the drivers seat and make rumbly vroom vroom driving noises.

In order for my cousins to race on down the freeway at 150 mph they had to access the power of the car and they had nothing to do with that power except to realize they needed it if they wanted to drive 150 mph down the freeway and look cool while doing it.

We only access the power of the engine when we quit trying to go somewhere under the horse power of our own rumbly vroom vroom driving noises and put the key into the ignition and turn it.   

God gives us free choice. The free choice to live out the words of God, and when we live out the words of God they become the works of God. It’s like putting the key into the ignition and turning it.  Our free choice to access the power of God doing all for us.  My cousins did one simple thing; put the key in the ignition and turned it.  They had nothing to do with designing the engine or building it. But when it rumbled to life, they experienced it’s power. 

God gives us free choice to accept His salvation or not.   The power of choice God gives us is what makes love real.  


Now back to the original question, “When I’m tempted to sin where is the line between letting God do all or do I just dig in and resist?”


The story of Abraham offering Isaac as a sacrifice is a classic illustration of God offering His Son Jesus as a sacrifice for our sins. When I took a closer look at this story I realized the answer to the man’s question was not a simple either/or and why no one seemed to have an answer to it.  

No one had an answer because it can’t be taken apart.  The story has all the components of salvation and like making bread from scratch once you mix the flour, water, sugar, salt and yeast together and bake it there is no separating it. 

And yet as humans we tend to take one side or the other whatever the situation may be. And in the age old grace vs works discussion we either say that God does all and I do nothing, or we do good works and hope it’s good enough and that God does His part.  

We don’t have to choose!  When we accept salvation it all comes to us mixed together like a loaf of bread.  

We can not take out any part of the story of Abraham offering Isaac or we lose the full meaning of the story. We can not have the ram caught in the thicket without the sacrifice before it and we can not have the actions of the sacrifice before it without the ram being caught in the thicket to interrupt it.  

So basically when I live out the words of God, like Abraham did, I HAVE the power of God providing all that I need.

We think we need to choose and that it is ‘either or’ but thats not how God does the math.  It turns out we can actually have it all. 

In the story of Abraham offering his son Isaac as a sacrifice to God, its all there, Abraham living out the words of God by faith and God providing all. It is ALL a part of salvation because God is big enough to do that.  

Back to the bread illustration. I take the flour, water, salt, sugar, and the yeast and it all gets mixed together and I have bread. Now there is no more separating it. Once I accept the gift of salvation, I have accepted it all, the free gift of grace, the gift of free choice, and since faith is also a gift to us from God I also receive the gift of works done by faith. I can not have one without the other and still have salvation because salvation has all of it and it can not be separated.  

From personal experience during the day; when I’m tempted I may step into the living out the words of God a bit grudgingly sometimes, but there is no mistaking the power of God that shows up when I live out the words of God rather than doing what my grumpy self feels like doing at the moment.  The power is always there like turning the key in the car and it starts up.  

I always have the gift of free choice to turn the key and put to use the power of God that is part of the gift of salvation.  It transforms me from being a weakling who does not have the power to push the car to my destination and so I sit in the car making rumbling engine noises pretending I’m actually going somewhere, to turning the key of free choice and having the power of God rumble to life and take me where God wants me to go.  

Sometimes we worry about the place God wants us to go.  The story of Abraham offering Isaac as a sacrifice covers that too doesn’t it?  Abraham no doubt agonized over his future without Isaac.  And yet, when he takes his keys of free choice and puts them into the ignition and turns it, essentially when he does what God has asked him to do, the automatic response is the engine starts. The power of God shows up. 

And we don’t have to worry that God will expect us to go from foot pedaling our little red Little Tykes car to driving a Trans Am 150 mph down the freeway on our third birthday.  Just like we move from the Little Tykes car to a tricycle and then a bicycle and onto a car with mom or dad sitting in the passengers seat, to being allowed to drive the back roads to school; so too God has a plan for the journey of our life.    

While we probably shouldn’t race our car down the freeway at 150 mph it is a good idea to access ALL of the power God has for us which can often look to us like God asking Abraham to offer his son, whom he loves, as a sacrifice to Him.  

That is a picture not just of faith, but of salvation at 150 mph.  

I have posted below some Bible passages to support my thoughts if you would like to read them and decide for yourself.  I have bolded the supporting texts but have provided the passage for context.  I have shared Hebrews 11 because it illustrates what faith is in this context; a living out of Gods words. For example Hebrews 11:7, “By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that is in keeping with faith.

Ephesians 2:1-10 NIV

As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

James 2:14-26 NIV

14 What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? 15 Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? 17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

18 But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.”

Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. 19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.

20 You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless[a]? 21 Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22 You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23 And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,”[b] and he was called God’s friend. 24 You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.

25 In the same way, was not even Rahab the prostitute considered righteous for what she did when she gave lodging to the spies and sent them off in a different direction? 26 As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead

Hebrews 11 NIV

11 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for.

By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.

By faith Abel brought God a better offering than Cain did. By faith he was commended as righteous, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith Abel still speaks, even though he is dead.

By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death: “He could not be found, because God had taken him away.”[a] For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God. And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that is in keeping with faith.

By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. 10 For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God. 11 And by faith even Sarah, who was past childbearing age, was enabled to bear children because she[b] considered him faithful who had made the promise. 12 And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore.

13 All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth. 14 People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. 15 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.

17 By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had embraced the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, 18 even though God had said to him, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.”[c] 19 Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking he did receive Isaac back from death.

20 By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau in regard to their future.

21 By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of Joseph’s sons, and worshiped as he leaned on the top of his staff.

22 By faith Joseph, when his end was near, spoke about the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt and gave instructions concerning the burial of his bones.

23 By faith Moses’ parents hid him for three months after he was born, because they saw he was no ordinary child, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict.

24 By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. 25 He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. 26 He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward. 27 By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible. 28 By faith he kept the Passover and the application of blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn would not touch the firstborn of Israel.

29 By faith the people passed through the Red Sea as on dry land; but when the Egyptians tried to do so, they were drowned.

30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the army had marched around them for seven days.

31 By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient.[d]

32 And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson and Jephthah, about David and Samuel and the prophets, 33 who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions, 34 quenched the fury of the flames, and escaped the edge of the sword; whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies. 35 Women received back their dead, raised to life again. There were others who were tortured, refusing to be released so that they might gain an even better resurrection. 36 Some faced jeers and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. 37 They were put to death by stoning;[e] they were sawed in two; they were killed by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated— 38 the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, living in caves and in holes in the ground.

39 These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, 40 since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.

Does Being More Right Make You Less Wrong?

I’ve been studying through the story of Abraham in the book of Genesis. I’m rather stuck there actually, but I’m having fun so I’ve decided to share and hope you enjoy reading it as much as I have enjoyed the process of writing it. Today’s snapshot of the story of Abraham focuses on Hagar and how her situation helps illustrate a small part of living out a loving and faithful relationship with Jesus.

Hagar served Sarai as her personal maid. Sarai is too old to have children and so she decides to give Hagar as a second wife to her husband Abram in order to hopefully produce the son God has promised. But when Hagar discovers she is pregnant she starts to think she is better than Sarai because clearly God had chosen her as the mother of the heir promised to Abram. 

Hagar’s thoughts produced actions and this did not sit well with Sarai.  I’m going to guess this was one of those times in life where getting even with each other and being catty to each other happened on a regular basis.

Why?  Because each thought themselves better than the other.

Sarai, no doubt fed up to her eyeballs with Hagar’s shenanigans, complained to Abram who told her she could deal with the problem as she saw fit.  

But here’s the thing…

Just because you are more right…does not make you less wrong.  

Genesis 16:6 (NIV) says “Then Sarai mistreated Hagar”.

Hagar is fed up with the situation also. 

Abram has clearly taken a side…and not hers.

She decides to get even with the both of them and takes her ‘promised by God baby’ and runs off headed towards her homeland of Egypt. 


Genesis 16:7,8 (NIV)

The angel of the Lord found Hagar near a spring in the desert; it was the spring that is beside the road to Shur. And he said, “Hagar, slave of Sarai, where have you come from, and where are you going?”

“I’m running away from my mistress Sarai,” she answered.

Then the angel of the Lord told her, “Go back to your mistress and submit to her.” 


The word “mistreated” in Genesis 6:6 and the word “submit” a few verses later in verse 9 are both from the verb “wə·hiṯ·‘an·nî”.

“Wə·hiṯ·‘an·nî’ means “to humble”.

Sarai humbled Hagar and Hagar packed up and left. But now the angel says to Hagar, ‘Go back and humble yourself to Sarai’.  

OUCH!  Right?  

First of all Sarai has humbled her and Hagar didn’t like it.  She didn’t like it so much she ran away.  But now basically she is to humble herself in the same way.   

She wasn’t to go back and humble Sarai.

She wasn’t to go back and humble Abram.

Though clearly both Abram and Sarai were not entirely innocent either.

Hagar was to humble herself.

This is not an easy thing to do!

Paul says in Romans 12:1, “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship”.

The emotional pain Hagar suffered when Sarai humbled her, the seeming unfairness of it all and then the angel of the Lord told Hagar to go back and submit to Sarai, to humble herself in the same emotionally painful, unfair way.  What a perfect example of what offering ourselves as a living sacrifice is all about.

What a perfect example of what Jesus did for us on the cross of Calvary. 

A time in history when God took His heart out of His chest and sent it to earth to die for our sins. 

Take a look at the cross of Calvary.  

Take a look at that kind of love. 

That kind of submission, that kind of humility.

Imagine God wants to plant the cross of Calvary into your heart.

He wants the extreme love of the cross to take root in your heart and grow.

What looked like an old dead tree will grow leaves.

And produce the flowers of grace and mercy.

Which will produce the fruit of submission to God.

And with that kind of humility and submission to God we will not try to convince Him that because we are more right we are less wrong and therefore just fine as we are.  

Because the problem is…

We tend to look at all the things God has to give us and we stand there and hesitate to accept them. We hesitate because we are afraid we are going to have to give up our favorite little sins, or be humble, or forgiving.

We say we want to serve God but we go chasing down sin and death as if it is going to escape our grasp.  

God created us from the dust of the earth and He loves every speck of dust we are created from.  We need to accept who we are; simply the dust of the earth and stop struggling to be more. After all we did not create ourselves and give ourselves life.  God created us.  He created every neuron in our brain to create pathways of loving thoughts.  He created our heart to be full of His love.  Not as a burden but as our freedom.  

So just because we are more right doesn’t make us less wrong

The importance of serving God outweighs our personal little quibbles with other people.  

Is Your Life A Lyre?

“… And upon the lyre I shall praise Thee, O God, my God.” Psalm 43:4

Last week Brett and I attended a small opera put on by the college where he teaches. The show started late and we waited impatiently while the orchestra members randomly practiced their own pieces. It sounded like a conglomerated mess. When the overdue actors indicated they were ready to begin the show, the conductor took his place and raised his baton. Silence ensued for a few long moments before the conductor waved his arms and the quiet in the auditorium  filled with the harmonious vibrations of bows on well tuned strings, the soft beating of the mallets on the timpani, and the airy sound of the wood winds combined with the vibrant brass. Each orchestra member played the music in front of them. They didn’t try to take someone else’s music and play it, nor did anyone stand on their chair and wildly play a piece to draw attention to themselves. Can you imagine what the song would have sounded like if everyone had moved their sheet music over by one stand? Harmony would have exited the auditorium and discord and cacophony would have walked in an set up a dictatorship. 

God is our composer and conductor. He has written a song for our lives. Before we choose to serve God our life is like the orchestra before the conductor picked up his baton, a conglomerated mess of lives ruled by a multitude of self directed conductors. But when we choose to serve God, the one true conductor, we play the music as he has composed it.  

Aspen takes violin lessons. When she practices she needs to tune each string to the correct note. When she first started tuning her violin there were times she couldn’t seem to get it right. She would give up and practice out of tune. My ears protested the nomadic notes who had wandered off the trail and I would take the violin and tune it for her. 

 Pretend for a moment your heart is like the lyre. The lyre is a string instrument and like any stringed instrument needs to be tuned. The true beauty of a musical piece can not be enjoyed unless the strings are in tune.  Likewise the true beauty of what our life was meant to be will be missed if we are not in tune with God’s will for our lives. Each string of my heart needs to be tuned to the will of God. My heart needs to be ready to do his will in all situations. When I hear God strike the note I need to be willing to bring my heart into tune with His. One out of tune string leads to many discordant notes and the song played out by my heart will not be the beautiful melody the original composer intended. When we are true to the notes  God plays out for us our life will be a beautiful song of worship and praise to our Father. He will lean in and listen, delighted in our beauty.  

The Big Blue Cookie Monster

For the word of the Lord is upright, and all His work is done in faithfulness. Psalm 33:4 NASB

We are the work of Gods hands so therefore His works toward us are faithful. We do not have to worry or complain about the future, because we know He created us with a plan and “all His work is done in faithfulness” to us. 

Pretend for a moment God is a baker and you are a future cookie. He doesn’t pull out His cookbook and follow His favorite recipe. No. He will create a recipe singular to you. He opens His recipe book, writes your name at the top and proceeds to write down the ingredients. He smiles.  Satisfied it’s perfect, He pulls all the required ingredients out of the cupboard and fridge.

First He puts the sugar and the butter in a bowl and blends it well. Usually when I’m making cookies this is a good time to give it a little taste….yummy. But it still isn’t a cookie, God isn’t finished yet. Something we need to remember when we are in a big hurry for God to give us something is that God has all the ingredients and they will be added at the appropriate time. We need not worry about our future because God has it all in His care and in the wisdom of His timing will add what we need when it’s needed. Unlike the times I’ve decided to make cookies and discovered I do not have all the ingredients and have to change recipes, substitute an ingredient, or run to the store for what is missing, God always has everything needed to complete your life.

Next He cracks the eggs and adds them to the mix, stirring until they are completely incorporated into the sugar and butter. Then he adds the flour, and baking soda, and salt, and maybe some chocolate chips, or some cinnamon, raisins and oatmeal. Sometimes He may add some peanut butter or maybe a few walnuts or pecans. Most of us don’t like to be considered nutty, but the truth Jesus teaches can appear pretty nutty. The simplest of God’s teachings; “Love your neighbor as yourself,” can seem nutty when trying to put it into actual practice. Am I really supposed to smile and wave at the person who runs a red light and I need to hit my brakes so I don’t run into them? Truthfully the few times I’ve managed to do that sort of thing, I laugh because it is so incongruous and certainly feels a little crazy. Opportunities to love our neighbor as ourself are often precipitated by a painful battle of our pride against the humility of God. Only humility allows us to love others as we love ourselves while pride lustfully seeks to be the biggest, tastiest cookie at the party. Pride is a cookie that doesn’t seek to feed others, but wanders around the party like the big blue Cookie Monster seeking whom he may devour.

Bear in mind that some of the ingredients God has written into our recipe are not tasty on their own. In fact, some are not so very tasty at all and our first reaction is to spit them back out, but they are a necessary ingredient to the recipe. Or maybe you feel like God is trying to make you a plain old oatmeal raisin cookie when what you really wanted to be was the white chocolate chip macadamia cookie. Your recipe will not turn out as planned if you keep resisting the ingredients God needs to add to create you.

Now that all the ingredients have been added it’s a good time to give the the cookie dough another little taste….yummy. But, despite how tasty it is, it still isn’t finished. It needs to be baked in the fire and the heat. And if there is one thing I’ve learned about baking cookies is that they need to be watched over or they become forgotten about and burn. So God, being the perfect baker, watches over his baking cookies and does not allow them to become burnt up and inedible. He faithfully keeps an eye on them and takes them out at the perfect time so they will be melt in your mouth delicious.  

But, the cookie still isn’t finished with it’s mission, it is tasty and sweet, and was created to be eaten. So we, the cookies, are to feed others with the works of God He created for us to do. And the best, most tasty cookies are eaten while they are still hot out of the oven. We are to remain heated by the Holy Spirit and by His power the faithfulness He has given to us we will return to Him and will carry out the plan He has created us to do. 

“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.” Psalm 130:13-16 ESV

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 NIV