Friday, April 24, 2015


"I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live" John 11:25 (KJV).

Four years ago my husband and I took my mother to Westminster to place flowers on her late husband's grave. Walking through the old cemetery, I read the grave stones along the path to where my stepfather lay. Some of the markers were so old that the engraving was barely discernible.

Arriving at Charles' grave, we saw that the beautiful granite vase topping the double heart headstone had split nearly in half. That granite stone had marked Charles' resting place for more than three decades. The years of heat, ice, snow and rain had finally taken their toll. It reminded me that nothing in life is permanent.

Mother missed my stepfather deeply through every one of those years. It broke my heart to hear her whisper, "It won't be long now, darling, and I will join you." The words that Jesus spoke in John 11:11 came to mind and I gently reminded mother that Charles only "slept," as Jesus told Mary and Martha before calling their brother, Lazarus, out of the grave. Though he were dead, yet shall he live.

We prayed, as mother placed the flowers she had brought in the broken vase. The damaged vessel was now transformed into something beautiful. What a special reminder of how Jesus conquered death. He fills our broken lives and makes us beautiful vessels of honor. He gives us beauty for ashes, joy for mourning, and expectation of eternal life with Him.

Thank You, Father, that through the death and resurrection of Your Son, Jesus Christ, anyone who believes can have eternal life.

© 2012  E. Bonnie Ryan

Friday, April 17, 2015


Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God. Luke 12:6 (KJV)

It was three o’clock in the morning as I stood praying and staring out into the snow on our deck. The wind in our trees was ferocious with wind chills of minus twenty-five expected before morning. However, wind was not the reason for my wakefulness or even the trees fitfully swaying overhead. My beloved kitty, Frankie was lying in an animal hospital recovering from emergency surgery. We had a special bond, and he had been my constant companion for almost thirteen years. My heart was heavy and anxious. Pushing back worry, I claimed Philippians 4:6, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication make your requests known to God.” 

Suddenly, my eyes focused on something I had not seen. There on the step was a sparrow! It should have been roosting somewhere safe. Sparrows are never out at night. It was unmoving and appeared to be frozen. My heart sank even lower. Then, I saw the slightest flutter of a wing as it shifted its tiny weight. “I have to get it out of the cold, I thought.”Hurrying upstairs to get a shoebox, the song “His Eye is on the Sparrow,” poured into my mind warming me with hope and reminding me of how God loves all His creatures. Returning with the box, I looked out once more before slipping on my boots. The tiny sparrow was gone. Left in its place was God’s comforting presence. In awe of His unfailing love for me, I thanked Him for His special messenger in the dark of night.

Heavenly Father, I raise my hands in praise for Your constant overwhelming love and care. Amen

©2015 Bonnie Mae Evans

Friday, April 10, 2015


…I have called you by name, you are mine. Isaiah 43:1b (RSV)

My daughter asked me to babysit my grandchildren, Nicholas, age 5, and Alexandra, age 3 1/2. She left instructions not to let them watch television all day. So I got the great idea to take a field trip to the grocery store.

I asked, “Want to go to the grocery store and buy our lunch stuff? There’s only peanut butter and jelly here.”

“Yes, let’s go shopping,” they answered excitedly.
We made a grocery list: lunchmeat, soup and fruit. Nicholas wrote BREAD on his list, Alexandra’s list included APPLES.
We arrived at the store, and each got a child’s grocery cart. I led them to the aisle that contained their item then said, “I’ll be at the deli getting our lunchmeat. Go there when you’ve got your items.”
Being third in line, I had one eye on Nick, one eye on Alex, and one eye on the deli lady.

Soon I heard a loud voice, “Granny! Want cimomum bread?”

Shortly, more calls, “Granny, They have cookies!”
“Granny! We need oranges, too.” “Granny, I want chicken noodle soup.”

One lady in the deli line said, “When I hear ‘Granny’, I think about the old lady in the hillbilly sitcom.”
Proudly I replied, “When I hear them call ‘Granny’ I have a crown on my head, and my heart fills with love.”
Can you imagine Jesus loves us more than I love them? Jesus knows my name and that comes with immeasurable love.
When we arrived home and sat at the table for lunch, Nicholas said, “I wanna peanut butter and jelly sandwich.”
Dear Lord, thank You for knowing me intimately and still loving me.  Amen
© 2015 Lois Gosley

Friday, April 3, 2015

A Special Kind of Warmth

I love the Lord, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy. Psalm 116:1 (NIV)

While meandering through wintry rooms in layered clothing, my mind began longing for the warmth of spring. My old, drafty home had exhausted my savings. During these winter months, the thermostat was set at sixty-two degrees to conserve oil. Although insulation was mounted around windows and doors seeping cold sunlight, the home remained frigid.

I sat down and prayed, “Lord please bless the remaining fuel as a provision against the cold.”

From a friend’s farm house miles away to my cold home near the edge of the woods, the Lord revealed His mercy and grace through a telephone call from a familiar and loving voice.

“I told my son you needed fuel and he wants to help.” Hmm, was oil needed already? My hope was that the fuel would last till spring, but when the gauge was checked, the line was just above empty. How could she have known fuel was needed, when I myself had not known?

My gracious Lord had spoken to her heart and revealed my need. God’s timing was perfect.  

This experience reminded me of the Biblical story in which the Lord provided a widow with oil through the prophet Elijah. Her needs were met way beyond expectation as were mine.

On this day, in mid-February, when the temperature rose and the thermostat steadied the heat, I felt anointed by the oil as it became an instrument of spiritual warmth. It was a special kind of warmth given to me by God and good friends!

Lord, friendships are one of our most valuable blessings. Thank you for being faithful and for giving me the gift of true friends. Your love is amazing.

© Kimberly Clayton 2015