Show me Your glory

I knew I wasn’t ready to be awake yet. I turned over on my right side and squinted my eyes open just far enough to see that the sun wasn’t ready to be up either. I’d been waking up early with a song on my heart the last few mornings. I really wanted to appreciate the morning, and rise up to do my devotions and writing while the rest of the house slept. What a struggle.

As I began to roll back over and resist the call of the new day, I heard noises from the boy’s room. I laid still and listened intently. I heard it again.

Throwing off the covers and making a dash for their bedroom, I turned on the hall light to see which one it was. Caleb, my youngest, was still asleep on the bottom bunk. On the bed above him Deegan was covered in the partially digested, now mostly liquid meal he’d eaten the night before.

Without thinking I went in to Mommy mode, bringing him down, undressing him, cleaning him off, and ripping his bed apart. How could this be? This poor kid just got home from the hospital six days ago, after spending four days there.

Deegan, who fought for his life at three months old (and at least twice since then), was diagnosed with a rare life threatening metabolic condition. A skin biopsy performed by two major hospitals in the country confirmed the diagnosis by the time he was five months old. He would endure many hospitalizations thereafter.In fact, each time Deegan has a vomiting illness he gets admitted to the hospital. His body becomes acidotic, and his energy levels crash, QUICKLY. Lethargy is an understatement. When a child can’t lift his head to vomit, or stay awake through a blood draw, it’s beyond lethargic.

Here we were facing the demon again.

I brought Deegan to my bed where I tucked him in, gave him the bowl designated for puke, and asked him how he was feeling. He just wanted sleep.

I text his dad to let him know that he had thrown up. These messages always mean, “I’ll meet you at the hospital.” There hasn’t been a time that he’s thrown up and not had to go. The longer the delay the worse off his veins are and the harder it is to get the IV going, which is exactly what he needs to help his body that can’t seem to help itself.

Figuring I could at least give him a couple of hours of rest, I laid next to him. I started to fall back asleep when again he began to toss and turn, whimpering for the bowl. Quickly I grabbed it for him and began to rub his back as he wretched a second time.

My poor baby.

Maybe we shouldn’t wait.

After wiping his mouth off, and laying him back down, I looked into the bowl of liquid. Less than a cup, I thought. They are going to want to know at the hospital.

My normal routine at this point would be to start texting family, getting on social media to call forth the prayer warriors, and packing up for the hospital.

Before I began the routine, I felt something else rise up in me. My goal for the New Year was to seek God first. FIRST. In all things. I invite God in, but usually after I try to fill His role first.

I rolled over toward Deegan, laying my hand on his belly, I prayed. Quietly at first, and pretty routinely. But the Holy Spirit arose inside of me, reminding me of the scripture God had given me on Christmas Eve.

“Then He called His twelve disciples together and gave them power and authority over all demons, and to cure diseases. He sent them to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.” (Luke 9:1-2 NKJV)

Owning my identity, I raised my voice with authority, casting out the sickness that gripped God’s child, my son. I bound the enemy and the symptoms of vomiting. I loosed the healing power of God with faith. I believed everything I prayed.

I thanked God.

I removed my hand from his belly and rolled over to write in my journal. A few minutes later Deegan began to stir, in need of the bowl. I gave it to him and without doubting for even a breath, I laid my hand on his back and simply thanked God some more.

I put the bowl away from us, without looking to measure how much was in there this time. I continued to journal. I included the lyrics that I woke singing, “I lift my hands to believe again. You are my refuge, You are my strength. As I pour out my heart these things I remember, You are FAITHFUL GOD FOREVER. Let faith arise, open my eyes, let faith arise!”

Finishing my entry I rested my head, closed my eyes, and fell asleep next to my son. I must have been exhausted because I slept until eleven. The house was still quiet. I rolled over to check on Deegan. He hadn’t thrown up again. I expected him to sleep, but wisdom told me I had to get something in him.

Waking him up, I was delighted by the energy he had, and his desire to eat. He got right out of bed and like any typical day went straight for his electronics. It wasn’t much later that I found myself calling for him to, “settle down.” Boys will be boys.

I saw God’s glory yesterday. I saw a miraculous healing because of the faith and trust I put in my Daddy’s word. I used the power and authority given to me, in His Sons name, without wavering.

My husband reads five Psalms and one Proverb a day to fit them in to one month of reading. In the beginning of our marriage he encouraged me to do the same. I was so inconsistent. With the New Year I committed to one of each per day. Being the third day of the month I read the third Psalm, only to find myself in its text.

“I cried to the Lord with my voice, And He heard me from His holy hill. I lay down and slept; I awoke, for the Lord sustained me. (v 4,5 NKJV)

Know who God is.

Know who you are.






Praying for the terrorists

It is so awesome to see so many people on social media united in solidarity for Paris. It is even more awesome to see so many people PRAYING for Paris. But I can’t sleep because my heart is so heavy with this question, of all the people praying for France, how many are praying for the enemy?
I know, it sounds crazy right?
Pray for the terrorists who kill HUNDREDS of people?!
Didn’t Jesus come to seek and save those which were LOST? Can’t we stand united in prayer for a revolution in the hearts of those who are led astray with hatred and power? Isn’t God able?!
We are under the impression that through war or retaliation WE are able. But it is NOT by might, NOR by power, but by HIS Spirit. HE IS LOVE. The greatest war we could rage is through prayer, being of one mind, one accord.
God brought to remembrance Proverbs 21:1, “The king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord, like the rivers of water; He turns it wherever He wishes.”
That means that the God of love is able to turn and cleanse the hearts of the wicked. For it is God’s will that NONE should perish.
It is so easy for us to pray for the good guys, but it is the bad guys who need our prayers the most.
We pray for those who have been attacked, but what if we prayed for the attackers? Perhaps if we unite in prayer for the enemy we wouldn’t find ourselves mourning loss, but rejoicing for that which was once lost.

Behave Like a Christian
9 Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. 10 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; 11 not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12 rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; 13 distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality.
14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. 16 Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion.
17 Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. 18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. 19 Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 Therefore
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
If he is thirsty, give him a drink;
For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.”
21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

I encourage you to pray for the enemy!
God bless ALL of His creation!

No where to turn but to You

Lost in a world I don’t belong, I’d sought for pleasure and sought for peace
And where I looked, temporary was found
Nothing seemed to stick around.
Things I gained, things I loved, rapid changes, loss and pain
Oh how tired the chase made me.
Until I was lost in the darkest of seas.
With nowhere to turn I had to look up, but when I looked up, was directed within
to a hardened dark place that my heart used to be
I praise You my constant for ever-changing me.

Continue to “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10

Nope, I’m not always right…

I love music. It would be very rare to enter my home and not be greeted with the sound of song. I love singing as well. It would be very rare to find me working and not hear my vocal chords dance. My boys recognize this and delight in turning the stereo on for me. My oldest son, Deegan, took delight in informing me that I don’t know the words to all the songs, and sometimes I “get them wrong.” I had to laugh at his bold insight. I also had to confess, indeed I do get them wrong sometimes, I am just “not perfect” I said.

Simultaneously my boys sang, “Yes you are!”

As my Spirit leapt inside me, I saw the love God loves me with. Just as my kids see me as perfect (for now), so my Maker does also (always).

Sure, I sometimes get the words wrong; I make mistakes. But the love that abounds for me exceeds all that, and they never meet. They are as far as the East is from the West. (Psalm 103:12)

I also saw forgiveness. I am forgiven for being imperfect. I don’t have to dwell on the mistakes I make along the way. I don’t have to live in condemnation or fear. (Romans 8:1) Because though I get it wrong sometimes, I am perfect in His sight. (Colossians 1:28)

His sight is all I want.

Be encouraged this day my friends, you too, though you get it wrong sometimes, are perfection.

“God doesn’t make junk.” Ethel Waters

He makes perfection.

PS. He made YOU!

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Father Time, Time is the Fathers

My heart is filled with thanksgiving as I stand in my warm kitchen, making my youngest son his favorite egg dish. I take a moment to look out the window over the wintry landscape. The brown deer running up the hill, along the deep tree line, stands out against the white fallen snow. I am so thankful to live where I do.
My mouth opens in praise as I thank God for providing our home, the land it sits on, the wildlife that shares it with us, as well as the family who owns it and that have adopted us as their own. I praise God for having not only heard my prayers, but for being so attentive to my heart to also provide the things of His creation that I most adore. I began to speak of His overwhelming grace, and give thanks that my name, Samantha Grace, is a constant reminder of how abundant grace is in my life. I open my heart to receive this great gift He bestows to me.
But as I stood in praise, thanks, and grace, I also confessed how I want to live more for Him. I began praying, “God, please forgive me, and help me to redeem the time. Help me to manage my time better.” My lips were silenced as I softly and gently heard, “It’s not YOUR time.” My prayers and confession immediately changed.
I know this to be truth. Many times I have surrendered all to Him, and many times, one by one, He unveils areas in my life that I falsely believe to be surrendered. Time, is His. HE called me here for good works and purpose. (Ephesians 2:10) I don’t desire to walk around in my own will, wasting precious time. I want to be completely consumed in His will, redeeming HIS time.
I encourage you to step back a moment and ask God to reveal if you are redeeming His time, or taking it all for self.

Gods time

Always in love and encouragement,

Spread Cheer

Encouragement. This was the initial desire that moved me to start a blog. I know it’s been many days since I’ve shared encouragement here. But today, I need release, and my best release comes through my writing.
Twenty years ago today I was encouraged by my beautiful, 33 year-old, mother to stay after school and participate in my schools basketball  cheerleading tryouts. My mom loved that I was a cheerleader, and encouraged me often to cheer at home, for her. I remember some pictures she took of me in my middle school cheer years. They have since been lost in all the change. She was a proud cheer mom.
As I sat, waiting for tryouts, chatting away with my friend Jill, I was called to the principals office. Odd, I thought. With a serious face and fairly somber voice, I was told I had to ride the late bus home. I tried to explain that I was waiting for tryouts at my mothers request. But the verdict remained, I was to go home.
I huffed in anger back to my friend, where I complained and pouted. I begrudgingly got on the late bus, leaving behind my friends, the cheerleaders.
We lived about a mile from where the bus dropped off, as our 4th and most recent move led us  out of the district. With sympathy from Mom and the school we were allowed to ride the bus, but it was our responsibility to get there. This afternoon our neighbor was waiting to pick us up. This was not terribly unusual, she sometimes picked up the younger kids from the late bus. What was unusual on November 2, 1994 was the amount of cars parked out in front of our house. When I saw those cars my stomach was instantly sick. My grandma, who was suffering greatly from Lou Gehrig’s disease, was living with us at the time. I think the consensus in the car was something terrible happened to her. But I felt something different. I vocalized that with a, “Mom” as I opened the door of the still parking car. I jumped out and ran inside that house to see my moms family sitting around our dining room table. Their faces red and wet from crying. I myself felt the wetness roll down my face. No words were necessary. My mom was gone.
The events of that day are seared in my memory. It was a day that would drastically change my life.
Remembering her this day, twenty years later, I can still hear her voice. I can hear her encouraging  me to keep being the cheerleader. I don’t need a uniform, I have the heart and a voice. Today, there are so many people in need of a cheerleader. I commit to being just that, if only for one person in need. Encouragement, like despair, is contagious. What will you spread? 
On behalf of my encouraging mother, I encourage YOU, go spread some cheer!
“Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Corinthians 1:2 (NKJV)