"If you’re always tired, always under-rested, you’re not going to be capable of doing everything you need to get done.  You’re going to make mistakes more readily, lose your temper, or miss opportunities. " — Karen Jensen

Why Evil Things Happen

“If God is good, then why do bad things happen?”  Have you ever heard someone ask that question?  I sure have!

And the answer is pretty simple. The reason that evil things happen, even to Christians, is because Satan is the ruler of this planet, not God.

Here’s the deal: God created the earth for mankind, and He turned the rule over to us (Gen. 1:26-31).

He blessed Adam & Eve and told them to take dominion over everything on the earth, with just one condition:“The tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” Gen. 2:16–17).

The problem started when the serpent (Satan) tempted Eve to eat the fruit of the one tree that God had forbidden them to eat….

Read more ...

God is Good and the Devil is Bad

When something horrible happens, it’s easy to become confused, especially when you start wondering who or what caused it.

Too many times people (even Christians!) think that God was the cause, or at the very least, He stood by and allowed horrible things to happen.

There is something I have to get straight right now: God is good, and the devil is bad. And that never changes. If you remember nothing else from this blog post, please remember that!

God doesn’t cause trouble or trauma, sickness or death. He isn’t stealing from you, nor did He kill anybody…

Read more ...

When You've Lost Something You Love

If you’re asking questions of God because you’ve lost a loved one, a relationship, a job, or something dear to you, you need to go through a grieving process.

There IS a valley of the shadow of death or loss, as Psalm 23 says.

When you’ve lost something substantial, it takes some time to adjust. It's as simple as that. You have to say good-bye to the way things were, but this transition doesn’t happen overnight.

Too often people try to push down the feelings and emotions that come during the grieving process...

Read more ...

A Safe Place

Have you noticed that we live in a hostile environment?

You only have to listen to the daily news to be aware of the fact that there is danger all around us – not to mention the storms of life that come against us personally.

Thank God, there is a safe place you can run to in the midst of danger and trials! Your heavenly Father has promised to protect and hide you from trouble.

Psalm 91:2 says, “I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.’” Even in the midst of the storms of life, this is His Word to you. It’s more sure and more lasting than the storms that may be swirling all around you.

Read more ...

What in the World is God Doing?

When things are changing all around you -- or you have questions about what in the world is happening -- it’s important to know that God hasn’t changed.  

He’s still doing what He’s always done!

He’s still saving, healing, and delivering people. And He still loves you! He still watches over you and orders your steps.

He simply hasn’t changed his mind about you or His purposes in the earth, no matter how crazy things may look right now.

Read more ...

He Never Changes!

In this world everything changes. Governments change, buildings change, people change, you change, I change. Countries, prices, social norms, icebergs, music, and even mountains all change!

Obviously if there’s one constant in this life, it’s change. But amid all of this change one thing remains constant, and that is God. Malachi 3:6 says, “I am the Lord, I change not.” Hebrews 13:8 says Jesus is the same “yesterday, today, and forever.”

Lots of circumstances may have changed in your life, but your covenant with God, bought by the blood of Christ, will never change. His love and care for you will be constant. When everything else shifts and changes, you remain standing on a solid foundation.

Read more ...

You Have Supernatural Protection

You and I live in a dangerous world, don’t we? It seems like almost anything could happen to us, or to our loved ones, in a given day. 

But God doesn’t want us to be afraid, and He has promised to protect us!  He's given us His angels.

These days I am blessed to travel and minister all over the country and around the world. I often have people say to me, “You go all those places alone? Aren’t you scared?” I always reply, “Oh, I’m not alone. The Holy Spirit and all the angels go with me every step of the way. It’s a crowd everywhere I go!”

The same is true for you…

Read more ...

Someone Is Praying for You

I once heard a story from a missionary who had been ministering in a foreign country many years ago.

In those days he and his ministry team traveled mostly by donkey along very rugged trails to remote villages in the mountains, where most of the indigenous people had never heard the gospel or even seen a white person.

This team had made an agreement with one another that if any of them got sick or were unable to travel for any reason, they would go on without the person who had fallen ill. They felt it was that important to reach this region with the good news.

Well, one day this missionary got very sick….

Read more ...

You're Never Alone

Sometimes when you’re hurting or questioning, you can feel very much alone. Maybe you feel like that today, like no one is standing with you – like you’re facing the storms of life all by yourself.

I think one of the enemy’s best lies is that no one understands what you’re going through -- that no one cares. Believe it or not, he tells the same lie to anyone who will listen! At one time or another, everyone has felt abandoned.

But here’s the truth: No matter how you feel, you’re not alone. The Bible says you always have someone with you who sticks closer than a brother (Prov. 18:24). God is with you! And when God is with you, you can be sure that everything will turn out better than OK.

Read more ...

How Close Are You Following?

When you’re following God’s plan for your life, it makes sense to follow someone who knows where they’re going, someone who knows the way.

And of course, Jesus knows the way!

In fact, He told us in His Word that He is the way (John 14:6)! As you seek Him, the plan He has for your life will unfold. As you follow Him closely every step along the way, that plan will come into focus.

When you follow someone closely, you start following the way they think. You can choose to follow Jesus that closely. You can be together with Him by spending time reading and meditating on His Word or by praying. Following Him in this way will help you start thinking like He thinks. And I believe that when you start thinking like Jesus thinks, you can start living like Jesus lives!

Read more ...

Focus on the Finish

Sometimes when we’re following a plan in life, things can go haywire. When that happens, it can make us feel like we’ve lost our way, or that nothing is going to turn out.

But when you’re following God’s plan, you don’t have to worry about how things might look right this minute.

Because when God starts on a plan, He doesn’t get detoured – He sees the end from the beginning!  He focuses on the finish, and He plans to see it through.

You might think that a change in circumstances means the original plan won’t happen, but the circumstances you may be going through right now are temporary, and subject to change.

Read more ...

From Tragedy to Triumph

You may have had tragedy happen in your life. Or at the very least, disappointments and hurts that have caused you to ask questions, or want to quit.

Maybe your life just hasn’t gone in the direction you wanted it to. Today you might be asking, “How did I end up here?! Why did this happen to me?”

My friend Jeff is an example of someone whose life has gone in a different direction than he expected. But if you ask him, he will testify that despite tragedy, God’s good plan has led him to triumph. He told me I could share his story with you.

In 1993 Jeff was working in a factory with his dad.

Read more ...

Has Life Surprised You?

Has life thrown you a curve?  Have things happened that you didn’t expect? I think it’s happened to all of us.  I know it’s happened to me!

After my husband died at age 37 (which was definitely a curve!) and I pastored our church in Boise for about four years, the Lord began to deal with me about moving back to Tulsa, Oklahoma.

That is not what I expected, and I didn’t want to go!

I didn’t want to leave the Northwest again for the flat, hot Midwest. I didn’t want to move away from my natural family and my wonderful church family...

I also didn’t want to go backward in my life. I’d been in full-time ministry for more than 15 years, and I just didn’t see how moving back to Oklahoma would be a promotion.

Read more ...

Don't Panic!

Sometimes things happen to us that take us completely by surprise. We’re shocked, even.

That’s how I felt when my husband died – he hadn’t been sick, and he was only 37 years old!  He just went to bed one night and woke up in heaven.

Maybe you’ve been shocked by something in your life. It’s not a feeling we humans like.  It makes us feel like life is out of control, and we don’t know what might happen next. It can make us feel like panicking.

But even though you may feel like panicking, God does not. He isn’t shocked, or surprised, or afraid. He isn’t sitting on the throne making the Home Alone face, and He never will be.

Your heavenly Father never says, “Wow, I didn’t see that coming!” The events of your life don’t freak out God or catch Him by surprise. No matter what has (or has not) happened to you, I want you to know that God still has a good plan for you. Don’t panic.

Read more ...