Tuesday, December 1, 2009


It is a little after 10 p.m. here and I am waiting for a final load of laundry to finish in the dryer. I have a stack of papers that need to be graded and lesson plans looming in my horizon. To be honest, with the holiday season in full swing, I feel a little overwhelmed.Shopping, wrapping, decorating: all of these things need to be added to my already full schedule.

I was just sitting here thinking that what I really need is an Alice - you know, the always smiling, always helpful maid from the Brady Bunch? She apparently lived with the family but still wore a blue uniform. hmmm. It never failed, when the camera zoomed into the kitchen, there stood Alice performing some vital function for the family. But when I look back at that show, Carol didn't work, did she? What did she need a live-in maid for anyway.

I have to admit, I feel a little jealous. I'm not sure where we would be a full-time, live-in maid, but I could sure use one. What a wonderful thing to come home and not to have to worry about dinner or cleaning or laundry or grocery shopping. Gee, what it really sounds like is that I need a wife! lol

The truth is though that despite all the balls that I currently am trying to keep in the air, God's grace is enough for me. He gets me through each day, and not just surviving either. He blesses me beyond measure. Like today, I had a follow up appointment for my final intestinal test - a small bowel capsule. I had to actually swallow a small camera. And don't ask me how they get it out or if they reuse it, as one of my students did. (use your imagination) God doesn't promise me grace for tomorrow but He does promise me enough for today.

When I look at my first post on here and how I wanted to live a victorious life in Christ, it seems I've come quite a long way. This time last year, I would have been spazzing out, totally freaked out about all that needed doing and the little time I had to do it in. This year, I know God will give me the grace and strength to get what needs doing done, and the stuff that doesn't get done - well, maybe it didn't need doing in the first place. I'll leave you with the words from a song by Chris Tomlin (one of my favorite Christian singers). I think it says it better than I can!
~ Blessings, Bronte

"Your Grace Is Enough"
Great is Your faithfulness oh God
You wrestle with the sinner's heart
You lead us by still waters in to mercy
And nothing can keep us apart

So remember Your people
Remember Your children
Remember Your promise
Oh God

Your grace is enough
Your grace is enough
Your grace is enough for me

Great is Your love and justice God
You use the weak to lead the strong
You lead us in the song of Your salvation
And all Your people sing along

So remember Your people
Remember Your children
Remember Your promise
Oh God

Your grace is enough
Your grace is enough
Your grace is enough for me [x2]

So remember Your people
Remember Your children
Remember Your promise
Oh God

Your grace is enough
Your grace is enough
Your grace is enough for me

Your grace is enough
Heaven reaching down to us
Your grace is enough for me
God I see your grace is enough
I'm covered in your love
Your grace is enough for me
For me

Friday, November 13, 2009


As 2009 gets close to the end, I can look back and see how God has changed me this year. My first response is not always fear and worry. It's not that I dont' fall into that, but I am soon reminded to pray instead, to actual do my life verse in Philippians!

But there is one area that is still untamed- my mouth. I don't know about you, but my mouth gets me into more trouble than just about anything else. Whether I am shoving food INTO it or letting words come OUT of it, it always seems to be NOT doing what I want it to.

In James 3:2 it says, "For we stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body as well." So maybe it is true that the last thing God really gets ahold of is our tongue - that true spiritual maturity means controlling what our tongues say.

This came home to me recently because I kept saying some not so nice things about someone. I could feel the Holy Spirit tapping on my shoulder as I was about to speak but I shrugged it off and continued. Then I felt God's conviction about my loose tongue, and I wanted to argue with God - But it's true! People need to know this because it's not fair! I felt like stamping my foot to get my point across.

It didnt' work, so I'd resolve to keep my thoughts to myself but everytime there came an opportunity to "share" I did so with relish. I would feel remorseful and think "I really shouldn't have said that" but I continued to do it anyway.

So finally I brought it all to God. I want to stop this and I can't seem to keep my tongue silent. WHAT is the deal? My spirit is willing but my flesh (particularly the flesh that is attached to my mouth!) is not cooperating.

It was then that God showed me the bitterness and resentment in my heart toward this person. It is true - the wellsprings of the heart do flow out my mouth. And the well in my heart was rather tainted.

For me, what comes out of my mouth is a direct reading on what is in my heart. I had to address the underlying issue - my attitude toward this person - before I could even hope to control my tongue. Just goes to show, the mouth really IS the final frontier!
~ Blessings, Bronte

Saturday, October 31, 2009

GOD IS ON THE THRONE (and so was I)

Usually, October is one of my favorite months. The weather is getting cooler but isn't bone chillingly cold yet - just nice and crisp. The leaves have usually turned by now and walking is an act of worship. I'm always amazed that God didn't just create a world that was functional but also one that is so beautiful it takes my breath away. There is no real function for beauty but maybe it is to draw us to worship its Creator.

But this October has been something of a trial. We had some household things that happened - gas leak, backed up toilet - that cost us quite a little bundle. Last night, the wind whipped up so fiercely, it actually tore our back screen door apart which means more money out of pocket.

Then there have been the health issues. Last school year, I believe I missed a total of one day all year. This month, I've missed six. Just this month! At least my students told me they missed me. :) First I got some not so great test results which meant I got a colonoscopy and endoscopy scheduled. Then I got what the doctor believed to be h1n1 which also gave me walking pneumonia. Praise the Lord the doctor caught it early and it cleared up with some antibiotics. I finally felt better from that, went to school and got the stomach flu. Then I finally got my stomach back to normal and I had to do a colonoscopy prep. I don't know if you've ever done one of those, but let's just say, you need to be close to the bathroom.

So, Tuesday came- the day of prepping- and it wasn't too bad. Although I have to say, I kind of felt like I was poisoning myself as I tool all those laxatives. Then Wednesday morning came and I was trying to get my kids off to school (after taking the rest of the medications, thus having to continually run to the bathroom).

My youngest son, Brody, had to go to chapel dressed as a Bible character. Knowing I'd be sort of, er, tied up in the morning, I had gotten all of his stuff ready the night before. I hadn't counted on one thing - his beard had to be white. Yes, my son was Moses and a normal brown beard (which I could color on with a marker) was not good enough. "Moses had a white beard!" my son insisted.

I was sort of stumped. The only thing I could think of was putting cotton balls on his face and they would have to stay all day long. We tried one - he thought it felt awful. So, with only 15 minutes before we needed to leave, my dear child decided he would rather be David. He was very picky about his props, so it took me a while to find a pouch with 5 stones and to make a rough sling out of an old dish cloth and dig out an old headband for him. The handle of my bissel carpet thingy was his staff. The whole time, keep in mind, I had to keep running to my own personal throne. I would bring something out and Brody would say, That isn't right or that isn't how it should look.

I could feel myself getting shrill and knew a total screaming fit was not far off - for me, not my son. I took a deep breath. I turned to him, looked him right in the eye and said, "Look, you have complained about everything I have suggested. You have a choice- you can use what I am giving you or you can not dress up at all. It's your choice, bud. Now I have to go to the bathroom." I turned on my heel and raced down the hallway.

Even a year ago, this scenerio would have ended in tears, either my son, mine or both. I would have screamed my throat raw. I would have sent a very unhappy child to school late and I would have been home, feeling guilty for losing my temper. I'd like to say this is all from being so spiritual. It's not. God has just been changing me from the inside out. Instead of swallowing my anger until it bursts forth in an ugly torrent of words, He has been showing me how to express it in a more constructive way. Without yelling. It just goes to show, He is on the throne and can work even when I am on my throne.
~ Blessings, Bronte

Monday, October 19, 2009


Sorry, it's been a while since I've been on here. It's been a crazy couple of weeks. First, we had a large gas leak outside. Apparently, my husband had been smelling gas outside off and on, but when we got our extra large gas bill, he knew we had a leak. So, when he came home from a soccer game, he smelled gas again very strongly and he called the gas company. Turns out they had to dig and put in a new pipe and we also found out our electric ground wire was hooked up wrong too. So, we had to fix that too.

I was personally very thankful for how God watched over us, even when we didn't know we needed watching over. I know nothing about how gas works and how dangerous gas leaks are, but my neighbor comes over on occasion and she smokes. I'm just glad she didn't flick her cigerette and blow us all to kingdom come.

Anyway, we then had no hot water for about four days. A guy came out and fixed it for us but in the process sort of mangled our chain link fence, allowing the dog to get out. Then I got some not so great test results back. Then Brody, my youngest, got croup. Then I got h1n1. So, it's been an interesting couple of weeks.

But through it all, my husband has been a real hero! First, he pounded in a copper rod that was about six feet high so that our grounding wire could be put in properly. Then he fixed the fence so the dog couldn't go wandering.

While I"ve been down and out, he has fed the kids, kept them occupied, cleaned up the house, vacuumed, went to the grocery store, did laundry, and even walked the dog. But the thing that touched my hear the most, that made me feel loved and cared for was the fact that he changed the bed and put on fresh sheets. Just for me. Just so I'd have a nice, clean bed to sleep in. I thought that was just the sweetest thing ever!

My husband is not the type of person who is showy about what he does for others. He just quietly does what needs doing. He doesn't expect thanks or praise. He just does it because he feels like it is the right thing to do. He is one of the few people I know that actually live out his life's verse. It is Micah 6:8, "He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God." And that's my husband all over. He truly is very humble. And that is why I sometimes overlook all the things he quietly does without fanfare. My new goal is to tell him, on a regular basis, how much I appreciate the fact that he is a good man!
~Blessings, Bronte

Friday, September 25, 2009

Lessons from Moses

I just finished Deuteronomy (finally) and it ends with Moses dying in Moab and God burying him. It would be easy for me to skim over that fact - God buried Moses Himself. When I stop and really think about that, it touches something deep in me that God would stoop to bury someone. He could have gotten someone else to do it, but He didn't. He did it Himself for His friend Moses.

Moses is one of my favorite Bible characters to date. He had fear issues and he had a temper. He got frustrated, yet he also grew and changed so much from the man we saw cowering before the burning bush, giving God every excuse he could think of to avoid his big fear - speaking in public.

So, what did I learn from reading about Moses. If I go all the way back to the beginning, the first thing I learned from the life of Moses was that God has a plan for our lives. Moses was born at a particular time and place for a reason. God protected him so that he could grow up and perform the task God had for him. God placed him in the home of the Pharoah. I'm not sure what it was like for Moses as the adopted Hebrew son of Pharoah's daughter. I don't know if he was part of the family or always an outsider. I do know that despite growing up in wealth and splendor, Moses had a longing to be a part of his true people. If I apply that to my own life, as someone who is also adopted, I can rest assured that God had a reason for where and when I was born and His hand was in what family I was adopted into. I have the life I do for a reason and a purpose.

The second thing I learned from Moses is that even when we make mistakes, BIG ones, God may let us run away for a while, but He always comes to find us with our assignments. Moses, in anger, killed an Egyptian overseer. Apparently, being the adopted son of Pharoah woulnd't have saved him from punishment, so he ran. To the desert. There he met his wife - Zipporah and her wise father in law. God used that time in Moses' life to find him a wife and to put in his life a wise man. While Moses probably thought that his life as a shepherd in the desert was all there probably was, God hadn't forgotten about Him and sought Him out.

The third thing I learned from Moses is that fear is not a good enough reason not to obey God. When God called Moses and told him to go speak to Pharoah, Moses came up with every excuse in the book not to go. Why? Because he was afraid. We know he was not an eloquent speaker, but I think some of this had to do with who he had to speak to. We don't know the relationship of the Pharoah (who would have been a stepbrother to Moses) and Moses. Maybe they had been close or maybe it was strained. But I'm sure it didnt' help Moses want to go tell this guy to let the Israelites go. Sometimes, speaking to those you know is harder than speaking to a stranger.

The fourth thing I learned is that what God calls you to do, He will equip you to do. Even if you have no natural talent for it, God will give you everything you need to get the job done.

The fifth thing I learned from the life of Moses was his incredible love for a stubborn, difficult people. Despite the fact that Moses was often exasperated with the children of Israel, time and again he begged God to spare them, often praying and fasting for long periods of time. That hit me because how often do I pray that fervently for others?

The sixth thing I learned was that others sin shouldn't make you sin. When Moses struck the rock out of anger, he lost his chance to enter the promised land. It doesn't seem fair to me, but that's the way it was.

The seventh thing I learned from Moses is that we should love and seek after God with all our hearts. At one point God offered to give Moses the land and give him all the blessings but God wouldn't go with him. Moses refused. He wanted God more than he wanted the blessing. Moses longed to see God's glory, even if it killed him.

Finally, I see God's love and care for Moses even to the end. He showed Moses the promised land and then tenderly buried Moses Himself. I believe (it doesn't say) but I believe that Moses finally got his wish - I believe he died seeing God's full glory. What a way to go and I don't think in the end he cared if he saw the promised land because he saw God instead.

~ blessings, Bronte

Friday, September 18, 2009


You know, I really enjoy reading my Bible. It seems like every day I see something in there that is new to me, even though I've been in church since I was a baby. I went to a Christian school and a Christian college, but it still amazes me how new and fresh something can be and what the Holy Spirit can show me.

However, once in a while, I come across a verse and think What in the world??? Today was a day like that. I was reading in Deuteronomy (I'm about halfway through the book now - yeah!) and came across Deut. 25:11, 12, "If two men, a man and his countryman, are struggling together, and the wife of one comes near to deliver her husband from the hand of the one who is striking him, and puts out her hand and seizes his genitals, then you shall cut off her hand; you shall not show pity."

Um, okay. I know that all Scripture is given for a purpose, so I have to ask myself, was this really a big problem back in Israel? I mean, really? It is PART of Scripture so God thought it was important enough to put into the Bible, but to be totally honest this one leaves me scratching my head. I have to admit, if my dear hubby was in a fist fight with someone, that would be about the last thing that would come to mind to stop it. (although, come to think of it, it would probably be quite effective!) Perhaps it was fine to hit them over the head with a chair or something, just don't grab them.

I guess what I can take away from this is keep your hands to yourself. Hmmm.
~ blessings, Bronte

Monday, September 7, 2009


So, I'm still reading in Deuteronomy. In my defense, I have stopped several times to do Bible studies. Hopefully, I can actually finish the book shortly! :) But I noticed that Moses seems a little bitter. In chapters 7-9, he mentions THREE times that he can't go into the promised land "because the Lord was angry with me on your account." He then goes on in chapter 8 to recount all the times the children of Israel messed up, stressing that God wasn't giving them the land because of THEIR righteousness, but because of the inhabitants wickedness.

One of the things he harped on was their unwillingness to go in to take Canaan in the first place. The whole reason they were sentenced to wander and die (at least that generation) in the wilderness to begin with.

And what was behind their reluctance to go beat the giants of the land? Fear. Plain old fear was the cause of the Israelites rebelling against Moses and refusing to take down the enemy. They chose to believe their fears over believing God.

It's easy for me to point my finger and say, well, goodness, God got you over the Red Sea and now you are balking at a few measly giants? But I know the outcome of the story and they didn't yet. It seems obvious to me, these millienum later, that God was going to come through, but fear loomed large in their minds and it clouded out God.

So, instead of entering the promised land, they wandered in the wilderness and never saw the promised land. Fear kept them out of the promised land, or I should say believing their fears over believing in God's power kept them out of the promised land forever.

Yes, it is easy for me to point my finger but what promised lands am I missing out on because I believe my fear over God's goodness, His promises, His past workings in my life? Ouch! That hits a little closer to home.

I also find it interesting that Moses repeatedly tells the children of Israel, a new generation that stands poised to take over their promised land, to remember all the things God has done for them, to not only remember but pass those on to their children. Why? I think the lesson is if you focus on all that God has done in the past, it becomes easier to choose to belief over fear in the present.

Sometimes, I wonder why I don't see God in bigger ways in this day and age. Some people say it is because God just doesn't do those things anymore. I wonder if it is more I am unwilling to go fight the giants, to step out in obedience and faith, rather than stay safely on the other side of the Jordan where it is safe and known. I wonder if it is because I want to know the outcome before I attempt the deed. Maybe I need to start recounting God's goodness in my life and then it will be easier to believe God rather than my fears.
~ Blessings, Bronte

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Me, Myself and Lies

That was the name of the Bible study I just finished. I've started this new thing where I sit down and try to figure out what I learned during each Bible study. In the past, it seemed like as I was going through I'd be getting illuminations and light bulbs turning on, but then by the end I couldn't remember every important thing God showed me. So, to remedy that, I'm trying to write it down.

This Bible study was about what we talk to ourselves about on a regular basis. I do talk to myself alot and sadly, often answer myself too! So, here is what I learned over the course of seven weeks of study.

1. It doesn't have to be well with my circumstances to be well with my soul.
2. God has given me a spirit not only of love and power but also of discipline! (what a relief to know I don't have to rely on my own!!!)
3. I need to know my identity in Christ - how God sees me because that is the truth. Only God's truth is a worthy foundation of my thoughts/feelings.
4. I need to be more award of my weak spots/triggers than the enemy.
5. False assumptions and perceptions are roots to rotten fruit in my life.
6. The root of grumbling/complaining is usually selfishness.
7, Keeping God in the center of my thoughts requires effort through talk to myself about Him, lift Him up and not me!
8. Lies often feel true and every thing I feel is not always true!
9. I need to trust God more than my fears, insecurities or feelings.
10. My hope is in Christ. Hope in God, His word, His lovingkindness is what keeps me anchored and stable. Hope in a person, circumstance or event makes me shaky and drifting.
11. Perserverence is especially important after a victory or when I am feeling emotionally or physically depleted.
12. Hope comes through perserverence and the encouragement of God's Word.

So, there is it is - the dozen truths that stood out to me through this Bible study. It's interesting because it seems these ideas of my feelings/perceptions not always being true is something I have been hit with again and again in the past six months. I think God is trying to tell me something, don't you?
~Blessings, Bronte

Monday, August 10, 2009


I have been concerned. Okay, to be honest, I have been fretting. Big time about this upcoming school year - how will I get it all done? will I see my friends/family? what if someone gets sick? On and on, the worries went in my mind. I could feel my shoulders creeping up to my ears as I stressed about the start of the school year.

I whined to God. I whined to friends. I whined to family memebers. I just grumbled and complained as I fretted away. As I learned last week, complaining is often a result of fear, and boy! was I fearful about this upcoming year.

Yesterday at church, I got into the main sanctuary a bit late as I was talking to someone. As I walked in a line from a song was being song - "His grace is enough."

And that's when it hit me! HIS grace IS enough. I don't have to worry or fret- I need to trust in Him to give me the strength and self discipline and perserverence to get through the year. I don't have to worry about next week or next month. I just have to do what He has for me to do today. I don't have "borrow trouble" for tomorrow, or next week or next month or next year.

I had been putting my trust and hope in being "more" - more organized, more scheduled, more productive - when I didn't have to be more because HE is enough.

What a load off my mind! What a weight off my shoulders! God is good. God is trustworthy. God directs my paths which makes Him the best GPS there is!
~ Blessings, Bronte

Thursday, August 6, 2009


I was listening to the radio as I got ready for bed - there was a speaker talking pretty strongly about complaining and that is the reason we are still in the wilderness. I opened up my Bible study this morning and it was about complaining and how that colors our lives. I was driving down the road and a sign in front of a church read, "Complaining is just a fancy word for unthankful."

Do you think God is trying to get my attention about something? I have been very convicted about what is coming out of my thought and the tape that is playing in my head. I think complaining can become, for lack of a better term, a bad habit. I get so used to complaining about things or saying things in a negative way, that it just becomes sort of second nature. The verse, "Let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord." Are my words and thoughts acceptable to God? Unfortunately, a lot of times they aren't.

I looked up what complaing actually meant. I found this definition in Webster's: "beating of the breast (can anyone say drama queen?); to claim/express pain or discouragement; to find fault; declare annoyance; to make an accusation.

This doesn't mean that you can never talk to someone about a concern or problem. It doesn't mean you can't ask for advice and/or prayer about a situation. We are to share each others burdens and we can't do that unless we are vulnerable with each other. But what it does mean is that complaining about things often drains our joy and enthusiasm for life and for God's work.

God showed me three things about complaining. First, when I complain it is often an expression of not trusting God. When you look back at the children of Israel - the most famous complainers - many times when they started murmuring, it was a result of fear. "God why did you take us out of Egypt? Where is our food? Where is our water? Are we going to die out here? What are You doing?" How many times do I complain out of fear and distrust? "God, how will I ever get all this done? Why aren't you changing this or that? How come this is happening?" Fear is often the root of my murmuring and complaining.

Second, when I complain about things I am expressing a complete lack of thankfulness for all God HAS blessed me with. Let's face it, compared to 2/3rds of the world, I am rich beyond measure. Just the fact that I have a roof over my head, two cars in my driveway and food in my pantry makes me in the top 5% of the materially blessed. Do I sometimes have to juggle bills around? Yes, but usually that is because I wasn't disciplined in my spending or didn't plan ahead. God has shown me over and over again His provision and not only has He provided my NEEDS, but He has also provided an awful lot of my wants too. When I complain, it is like a slap in His face instead of a thank you.

Third, when I complain sometimes it is a form of procrastination. Let's face it, it is much easier to complain about something than to actually take action to solve the problem. It is easier for me to complain about my weight than to start keeping track of calories, take the time to cook/prepare nutritious meals or start working out. It is easier to complain about my lack of time than it is to sit down and take a hard look at what I am doing and how that all fits into the hours of my day. It is easier to complain about a lack of time to write than it is to take the scary step and just start doing it! Complaining is easier than doing, at least for me.

This morning, as this truth hit me square between the eyes, I had to confess that my words and meditations often are not very pleasing to God. :( I was ashamed of myself, truth be told. I asked God to make me very aware of any complaints or murmurings that start in my mind or on my tongue.

Phil. 4:14, 15, "Do all things without grumbling or disputing; so that wyou will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God in a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world."

I want to be a light in this world, not turn off people from Christ by my negative attitude and words.
~Blessings, Bronte

Sunday, August 2, 2009


We had communion this morning at church. The Pastor had preached on Psalms 22 which is a messianic psalm which simply means that it was a prophecy concerning Christ's Crucifixion. As I meditated on Christ's death on the cross and thanked Him for it as I waited for my little cup of juice and that stale tasting cracker, I was overcome by what He did for me.

When I think of Jesus, I think of how big He is, how awesome He is, how He put the stars into place and set the seas into their places and how after He was done creating it all, He spun it into motion.

As I contemplated what Christ's death on the cross really meant, (we can say that so many times it becomes sort of glib, kwim) the thing that hit me the most was the humiliation Christ had to endure. Here was the God of the universe with the power to call down the angels and turn His tormentors into ash, yet He endured. He endured not only having His back ripped to pieces, but them pushing a thorn crown into His head and mocking Him, spitting on Him, parading Him before a crowd of people who screamed and yelled insults. He endured that most of the people in that crowd just thought He was some kind of deluded crackpot that had had the stupidity to cross words with the Sanhedrin and make them mad enough to get rid of Him. He was the God who created us all, beaten, laughed at and finally crucified.

And He could have stopped it at anytime. What makes Christ so different than any other "martyr" through the ages is that He had a choice right down to the last breath that He drew. But He chose to endure not only the horrendous physical pain and agony of crucifixtion but also the humiliation of a brutal, mocking death. Even as He gasped on the cross, a mocking epitaph hung over His head and soldiers callously cast lots for his clothing.

He did all this for me, for you, for the entire world. He did it for people who are so used to the idea that they forget the magnitude of what He did (forgive me!). He did it for people who blithely ignore His existence for the most part unless they are in trouble. He did it for those that actively deny and curse Him. He died for all of us and He chose to do it the whole entire time. I left church with tears in my eyes, shaken anew at His sacrifice for me. May I never become complacent about it; may I never forget the price HE paid so that I could be free in the truest sense of the word.

John 3:16, "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever should believe on Him should not perish but have everlasting life."

Amazing Grace - Bridge (Chris Tomlin)
My chains are gone
I've been set free
My God, My Savior died for me
And like a flood
His mercy flows
Unending love, amazing grace

Friday, July 31, 2009


I have very exciting news. I submitted an article to a fairly large Christian magazine and my article made it to the second round of evaluations! I am very excited but at the same time, trying hard not to get my hopes up.

As I prayed about it, I found myself evaluating my prayer - did I have the right attitude? Was I suitable humble, yet sincere? It dawned on me that I was trying to manipulate God to answer yes about this by praying "just right."

Have you ever done that? I sometimes find myself saying, "Well, I shouldn't do THAT if I want God to answer my prayers the way I want." As if God is up in heaven waiting for me to mess up so He can say no to what I am praying about!

God really isn't weighing our performance with the blessings He has for us. There are some specific promises in the Bible that do tell us, if we do x, God will bless that. But God is not waiting with a colossal rubber stamp that says NO! if we happen to pray and not say, "thy will be done."

The truth is that God often blesses us when we don't deserve it at all. I mean, when do I actually measure up to God's standards anyway? Psalms 103: 12 says, "The Lord is compassionate and gracious; He is slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness." And He has to be to put up with me on a daily basis.

This belief that we can somehow get God to grant us blessings or answers to pray based on behavior can also work the other way. What if we are striving wholeheartedly after God, obeying Him, and doing what He is instructing and something bad happens? If you believe blessing is based on your performance this could cause you to either beat yourself up needlessly or turn to God with a shaking fist, asking why He would do this to you.

The bottom line is God's ways are not our ways. We are to listen and obey, to worship and adore, to read His Word and listen to what He is telling us. The Bible tells us He has a storehouse of blessings for each of us. I don't want to miss out on that because I am too busy evaluating my performance!
~ Blessings, Bronte

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


As I have said before, I have felt stuck for a long time. Sort of stagnant, like a pond. It occurred to me today as I walked by a particularly smelly sewer run off, that even though not much has changed outwardly, God is growing some water lilies in that stagnant water.

I still live in the same neighborhood but now I am looking for ways to serve/help the people around me. I don't live in fear, now, either. I am still overweight, but don't feel driven my food like I once did. I am taking positive steps to improve my health and the weight is coming off, very slowly, but still, I'm moving in the right direction.

I still have the same problems and issues going on around me, but somehow, they don't rock my world quite as much. I find myself calmer, less stressed by circumstances. This isn't to say that I don't wig out still, but it's definitely less than it was before.

I still am not published, but I am taking steps to follow where God has called me. He has opened the path for me, one step at a time.

Yes, as I look around in the pond I'm living in, there are some definite lily pads floating here that weren't here at the beginning of the year. God is answering my prayers, not in the way I had envisioned, but He's answering. I find myself once again realizing that God's ways aren't our ways. His thoughts are higher than our thoughts. He is moving, even when we don't see Him.

Psalms 103:1-8 "I will bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me will bless His holy name. Bless the Lord, Oh my soul, and forget not all of His benefits. Who has pardoned my iniquity; Who has healed all my diseases; Who has satisfied my years with good things so that my youth will be renewed like an eagle. The Lord does righteous deeds and judgements for the oppressed. He made known His ways to Moses and acts to the sons of Israel. The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness."

~Blessings, Bronte

Sunday, July 12, 2009


I've been struck lately with how negative I can be, even about God and spiritual matters. I've been doing this study called Me, Myself & Lies by Jennifer Rothschild. It is about what we talk to ourselves about - what exactly your thought closet is filled with whether that is negativity or worry or God's truth.

Today in the service, our Pastor preached on Psalms 1. The title of his sermon was "Are You Happy?" I thought that was a bit odd because, quite frankly, as Oswald Chambers says, I think God is more concerned about our character than our happiness. But as our Pastor went through the verses - the things we need to avoid that are listed in verse 1 and went on to verse two about what we are to do instead which is delighting and meditating on God's Word, I realized something. I had become a spiritual pessimist.

What do I mean by that? I mean, I sort of expected things to go badly. I expected the hard and difficult and ugly. Maybe it is the national news or maybe it is because five women (several who are not that much older than I am!) have been diagnosed with cancer in the past year. I'm not sure, but I had become one of those Christians who instead of having joy, had the "when is the next shoe going to drop" syndrome.

Psalms 27:13 says "I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living." Without hope and joy, we despair. We wither up and become Christians that are dry. We certainly don't draw anyone to Christ. I mean, who wants to be a dried up, pruney pessimist. No thanks!

Please don't get me wrong. I know there are hard things in life. You might get diagnosed with cancer or suffer the loss of a loved one or the end of a marriage or lose your job. Those are hard things and Jesus never said take up your bed of roses and skip after me with lollipops. I don't think positive thinking keeps the hardships of life from not happening, neither am I suggesting that you live in a state of denial of the realities of life.

However, the Bible also tells us that hope deferred makes the heart sick. Do I wake up in the morning expecting to see the goodness of the Lord or do I expect bad news or a disappointment? Do I have joy in the many blessings He gives me or do I only see the negatives and what could go wrong? Am I the type of Christian who is suspicious of the joy in others because I think it is more spiritual somehow to be miserable?

In Nehemiah, it says the joy of the Lord is our strength. I think this is what it means - when we look for the goodness of the Lord in this life, our focus is up, not down on the rocks in our path or inward at the issues in our souls. We see the answer, not the problem all the time. I don't know about you but I think I'm going to throw away that bin in my thought closet that contains all the pessimistic might be's and replace it with the joyful expectation of God's goodness box.
~Blessings, Bronte

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


I signed up for my writing class a few weeks ago. When the materials finally came, I don't know how many times I looked at the little note that came with it that said I had until July 8th to return it. There have been several times that I seriously thought of boxing up my instruction book and sending it back. Things like, "You'll never be able to do this" or "It's too hard!" or "When will you ever have time to do this and do it right?" circulated in my mind. I have to say the last couple weeks since I got my materials, I have had more negative thoughts and actual physical issues than I have had in a long time.

I guess I shouldn't be surprised. It seems when you start to do what God wants you to, Satan is right there to discourage you and try to distract you onto a rabbit trail. In fact, I should have been preparing myself for the attack, but I wasn't. I was sort of blindsided by the negativity and issues that cropped up.

But I made it - it is now too late to turn back. My time to decide is over. I have to press on toward the goal. This doesn't mean I am suddenly full of confidence or brimming with purpose though. But it does mean I am committed to seeing this through to the end.

With this sort of luke warm enthusiasm, I went out to get my mail today. I noticed a card addressed to me. I didn't recognize the address and wondered who could be sending me a card. I'll be honest and say, I was hoping it wasn't another wedding invitation - we have three coming up in the next month! (not that I am not thrilled for all of them of course!) I opened it up and there was a wonderful, encouraging note from my Bible study leader. We just started a new one this past Sunday. She specifically mentioned my writing class, encouring me and saying she would pray for me! It was just what I needed today to spur me onward.

God's timing is always just right. It also reminded me that when God nudges me to send a card or pick up the phone, I should do it! You never know if that little card or phone call will be God's way of answering someone's prayer who is just holding on.
~ Blessings, Bronte

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


What do I mean by those people? I mean the people who start to resemble their dogs! I dont' mean I look like Kipper - he is lean and elegant with long, flowing hair. I am short, round and have short, curly hair. What I mean is my personality is similar to my dog's. I started a new Bible study and as an ice breaker, we had to say which dog breed we were similar to. As I started to think about it, I realized that I was remarkably like my collie, Kipper.

We both are friendly and enjoy meeting new people. However, while we like about 98% of the people we meet, there are times we take an instant dislike to someone for no apparent reason. We just get a bad feeling.

We both tend to follow the rules but have a stubborn streak once in a while. Neither one of us likes to be manhandled into doing something, and if you get harsh with us, we tend to shut down. We both tend to bark at "boogey men." For Kipper, that means scary trash cans or rolls of old carpet. For me, that means imagined fears that aren't really a threat at all.

We are both pretty loyal and quick to forgive. But we never forget. Neither of us likes the heat and would rather hang out in the house with our loved ones. While we are laid back, we do get bursts of energy. We both are quick studies and like learning new things.

Actually, it was kind of scary to think of all the ways I am similar to my dog! I mean, who would have guessed. But there are some things I can learn from this. While most of the traits aren't too bad - I mean who minds being loyal - the one thing that hit me is how we both bark at phantoms. I wonder how many times God is thinking, It's just a harmless roll of old carpet while I am "barking" about it and on full alert. When I am walking Kipper, I know when things are harmless but he doesn't always because they surprise him or he doesn't recognize them. The same is true for me. God knows what is harmless and just looks scary.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths." Isn't God awesome that He can use something as simple as a dog to bring a verse to life?
~ Blessings, Bronte

Tuesday, June 30, 2009


I just turned in my first assignment for my writing class yesterday. It felt good to push the send button on my email, and I opened up my book to see what my next assignment was, eager to get started. Almost immediately doubts hit me - would the idea be any good? Even if the idea is good where will I sell it? Around and around in my head the questions and doubts whirled. I just kept telling myself I was going to do the next lesson anyway. This morning I woke up feeling blah and had absolutely no ambition - just sort of blue. Not a navy blue, just a light azure blue, but blue none the less.

I was sort of floating along in this miasma of blah-ness all day when suddenly it hit me. I should have been expecting this and I'm not sure why it took me by surprise. Anytime you start to do something that God wants you to do, it isn't unusual to get some resistence. If God convicts you to be more submissive to your hubby, you can bet that suddenly things will come up that make that very difficult. If you are convicted about patience, immediately it seems that events conspire to make you lose your cool.

Satan is usually at his worst when you are actually doing what you are supposed to be doing. He doesn't want you to succeed so he uses a variety of lies to get you sidetracked. The thing is, he can only win if I let him. So, today I am going to ignore my feelings. Today I am going to play praise music and do the next thing. :) I am not going to be discouraged or quit before I start. "With God all things are possible."

If God asks you to do something, don't get discouraged if things seem to get worse as you obey rather than better. Take that as a sign that you are moving in the right direction. Satan doesn't bother with people that aren't a threat to his schemes and plans. Remember, we are overcomers with Christ - that means we have something to overcome!
~Blessings, Bronte

Monday, June 22, 2009


"We must come out of denial about our losses,. Where formerly we had numbed our anger and pain at life's disappointments, now we must come to terms with our losses and all their accompanying emotions...Grace is freeing me to no longer minimize, justify, or deny my losses, but to face them with integrity and grieve over them. Coming out of denial about past losses has been critical to my healing process. ~ Nancy Groom

This quote was in my Bible study this morning. I am doing Becoming a Woman of Freedom by Cynthia Heald. I thought this was very interesting because I think, sometimes, in the Christian community it is almost as if people are afraid to feel their feelings. At least any negative feelings. If someone hurts us, our first response it to brush it aside as if it didn't happen or didn't hurt.

The truth is, those wounds that are not acknowledged and bound up, tend to fester. So we have people sitting in church that are covered in these small, festering nicks and cuts. Sometimes, it isn't anything big - like nobody thanked them for organizing all the funeral dinners or passed the praise onto someone else. Sometimes, it is bigger and deeper hurts. Whatever kind of wound it is, though, big or small, if we minimize, justify or deny those hurts, they tend to fester and instead of going away, they get bigger or deeper.

Why do we do this? Maybe it seems more spiritual if we pretend nothing bothers us or hurts us. BUT, we don't see this example in the Bible. If you look at the Psalms, it is filled with David crying, whining, complaining and basically just pouring every emotion he had out to God. It's interesting that by the end of the Psalm, he was usually praising God. He could do that because he wasn't filled up with bitterness and hurt.

In Psalms 116:1,2 it says, "I love the Lord, because He hears my voice and my supplications. Because He has inclined His ear to me, therefore I shall call upon Him as long as I live." It doesn't say, God wants you to suck it up and never acknowledge your feelings or even that you have any.

Personally, I think a lot of this stems from our desire to be "nice." We tend to be passive aggressive. I used to be passive aggressive. I'd smile and nod but inside I was thinking, "You jerk!" I thought I did this because I was a nice person and just didn't want to upset anyone, but I really did it because I was protecting myself. I wanted people to like me and think of me in a certain way, and they wouldn't if I let loose with what I was really thinking! What changed me from being passive aggressive? When I realized other people were doing the same thing to me and it felt like I was being lied to. And don't let anyone fool you, saying one thing, while feeling something totally different IS a form of lying. If I tell you, "No, no, it's fine - don't worry about it" but inside I am seething and angry and stop calling you - that is dishonest to you and not very fair. You have no opportunity to make it right. You are left in the dark and wondering why I am no longer calling you.

We walk around with these facades with other believers - yes, everything is fine; yes, my family, my kids, my marriage - they are all perfect. But inside, we're dying. Our families, our kids, and our marriages aren't perfect, but we have to keep up appearances. I am NOT saying you need to stand up in church and air every shred of dirty laundry in your home or life. There is such a thing as discretion. What I am saying is that you CAN say, pray for me, I'm struggling. You can let down that facade and let people in - you will be surprised at how many there are that really care about you and want to help.

The church is supposed to be fellow believers helping each other to live as new creatures here in this fallen world. We aren't called to pretend with each other or to tear each other down. We are called to speak truth to each other in love. And you know, the Bible tells us, "The truth will set us free." So, take out those old hurts that are moldering in the back of your mind and heart. Acknowledge that YES, they hurt and it wasn't very kind of so and so to do that to you. Then turn all that hurt over to God. You will be surprised at how free you feel!
~Blessings, Bronte

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


"Give yourself fully to God. He will use you to accomplish great things ont he condition that you believe much more in His love than in your own weakness." ~ Mother Teresa

I was finishing up Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World, and this quote by Mother Teresa struck me right between the eyes. For the past few days, I've been having this running conversation with God - I am not good enough. I am certainly not holy. I often watch or read things I shouldn't. I am lazy (right now I am writing this instead of cleaning!). I am often short or irritated or petty or mean to people, particularly my family. My tongue often gets me into trouble by wagging too much. I fall short in so many ways. So who am I that God would use me? Who am I that God would tell me I was a good and faithful servant when I get to heaven? Who am I that God would choose to bless me so abundantly?

Lately, it seems everywhere I turn, someone is sick, and not just a cold, but terminal cancer type stuff. Women that are my age or not much older are dying. There are several on the mom's bulletin board I frequent. One has seven children. What is up with that? There is a woman at my church. She is only 40 years old and kids that are the same age as mine. There are people around the world suffering in all kinds of ways. Why am I exempt? Is it just a matter of time?

Turning on the news is depressing these days. I think my great-great-great-great-great grandchildren will still be paying off our national debt at this point. I won't get into politics but many of the recent decisions have me cringing and wondering how long God can hold off judgement.

So many anxieties and worries crowd into my mind, but the chief among them is I can never measure up to God's standards. I will always disppoint Him. And the truth is, I can't. On my own. But God knows that I will always be predisposed to worry. I will miss opportunities because of fear or sheer laziness. Ps. 103:14, "He knows our frame, that we are but dust." He knows. My weakness doesn't come as any kind of surprise. But through my weakness, He shows His strength. If I let Him. "Take my yoke upon you for my burden is light." Do I believe God loves me no matter what? Do I believe His love is everlasting, neverending and redeeming? Do I continue to seek Him (He promises if I do, I WILL find Him)? I don't have to worry about tomorrow or next week. I just have to live today as He guides me. I have to obey today. That's all. Each day, every hour, surrendered. That's all. "Take no though for tomorrow..."
~Blessings, Bronte

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


I think I mentioned that I did this Bible study by Beth Moore called Esther: It's Tough Being a Woman. That study taught me a lot of things. For the first time, I went back and wrote down the lessons God taught me so I wouldn't forget. Have you ever done that - gone to a conference or did a Bible study and were just bowled over by the abundance of what God has taught you, only to forget it in the busyness of the coming weeks? I do that all the time. And I don't want to forget! So this time, I thought I'd write down all the things in the study that really spoke to me. There were quite a few actually, as I read them over to get ready to do this blog, but I wanted to highlight the most important ones to me!

The first one is that even when we can't see God, it doesn't mean He isn't there. Interestingly, in the book of Esther, the name of God is never mentioned, but that doesn't mean He isn't all over the story.

The second thing that hit me is that fear is never an excuse not to obey God. Esther had every right to fear going in to the king - she could literally lose her head. She was between a rock and a hard place - if she went before the king she could die, but if she didn't, Esther would die anyway with her people. Thankfully, Esther got to the place where she surrendered and said, "If I perish, I perish." The fear of death can rob you of the joy of life.

The third thing that stuck out to me was that our destiny is never about us. Instead of heady, it is humbling. Two statements Beth Moore made just hit me between the eyes: "Great lives don't always seem great while we are living them" and "To live for the greatness of God is to live the great life." I think I've always kind of had in the back of my mind that fulfilling my calling would be accompanied by a red carpet being rolled out and trumpets blaring or something. That focus is so off, it's almost funny. If I live my destiny, people shouldn't see me, they should see God.

The fourth thing that stood out to me has to do with how Satan works in our lives, if we let him. We are most prone to attack after we have been set free from a stronghold in our lives but haven't really yet arrived at God's destination for us. (that idea from Beth Moore was a real eye opener to me!) We are also most vulnerable in our minds. Satan can't touch us, unless God allows it, but he sure can whisper in your ear, and half the time we believe him! This statement by Mrs. Moore has been so helpful to me when this happens: "Respond to temptation out of your mindset rather than your mood." In other words, stop letting your emotions lead you around by the nose. Emotions are good things. God gave them to us, but they can be totally untrue. We have to set our minds on Christ and take every thought captive; otherwise, when our emotions come calling, we can easily be led down a rabbit trail that has nothing to do with reality.

The fifth thing that really resonated with me was that doing nothing out of fear of doing the wrong thing is still a decision, albeit a passive one. My boys play baseball. If the other team doesn't show up, they forfeit the game. It's the same way with us, if we simply don't show up in our lives because we are trying to protect ourselves from whatever looms in the horizon, then there is no game. We have forfeited our option to play on God's diamond, and we certainly have no chance of winning a game we refuse to show up for. Not deciding IS a decision.

The sixth thing that made a big difference in my own life is the fact that we can be in bondage to a person. I know in my own life, I can get so caught up in gaining certain people's approval that I get tangled up in bondage to that person. The truth is, it isn't the person but our thoughts that snare us. The only person who can handle my obsessions and insecurities is Christ. He's the only one that will fulfill every need I have, so I can go into relationship with others without demanding that THEY fulfill me. No one person can really shoulder that burden for long, anyway.

Finally, the seventh thing that encouraged me is that we are meant to be warriors for God. We aren't fragile blossoms, ready to be crushed by people, events or circumstances. The Bible tells us we are equipped for our calling. We have everything we need, even when things aren't going the way we planned or we come up against the enemy. God gave us a whole set of armor to wear, and a sword (His Word) to fight the enemy with. God assures us that even when we are waiting for the battle - that's what most soldiers hate the most, the wait!- if we are waiting on God, He will renew our strength. He's got all the bases covered.

I love how God has so many things to teach us and show us. How many times have I heard the story of Esther? That is the awesome thing about God's Word, we can read and reread it, and each time, there is something there for us to take with us that can change our lives!
~Blessings, Bronte

Sunday, June 14, 2009


Our Sunday school class just started a new series on the "end times." On an online board of Christiam moms I frequent, much of the current events discussed are centered on the economy and the direction of our country and how the "end times" can't be far behind. I could feel my anxiety levels going up as Pastor David Jeremiah talked about the reality of crude oil and how our consumption as Americans is way past our production.

I started "what if-ing" with a vengence. What will I do if we have no heat or electricity? We don't have a fireplace or even a place to cook with a grill if the weather is bad because we don't have a garage or covered porch. Living in northwest Ohio, you know the weather is going to get bad and it will be pretty cold. What will I do for water? for food? What if, what if, what if... swirled around in my mind until I had us living under bundles of blankets while we all scrounged for scraps of food in the streets. Yes, I know it sounds crazy, but honestly, I can spiral into fear-induced what if scenerios faster than you can blink an eye. It's one of the downsides of having a good imagination.

Then my mind went to, what is the purpose of writing if God is coming back. Will a new book in the world or articles or devotionals make any difference if people are going through the tribulation anyway?

Then, in the midst of my panic, I heard God's still small voice in my spirit. "Take no thought for tomorrow for tomorrow will take care of itself." And then Matthew 6:26, 27, "Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"

The reality is, once I reined in my out of control emotions and started looking at the truth, I calmed down. The truth is that God has always provided for us, not just necessities, but in abundance. Not only have we never gone without food, but we have good food and lots of choices (maybe even too much food if my waistline is any indication!). Not only do we have a roof over our heads, but our home is roomy and comfortable. Not only did a friend and my parents pass down to me some very nice furniture, but it ended up being in the colors I would have picked out anyway if I had gotten new stuff. Imagine, God not only blessed us with some nice new-to-us furniture, but He cared enough to make it in colors I really wanted. Based on my past history with God, was there really any need to worry about Him taking care of us in the future, no matter what happens? Nope!

As for my writing, God hit me with the fact that I don't have to worry about the Rapture coming if I am doing what He has called me to do. I had to repent right there for all the times I've let fears or worries or whatever hold me back. The only thing I want to hear when I stand before my Lord is "well done you good and faithful servant." If I am diligent to spend time with God and then obey what He tells me to do, there is nothing to fear or worry about. There isn't going to be a score card to see who has done the most, but I think God will look at if I have lived the life He created me to live. I certainly don't want to be like the servant with the talents who buried them for fear of losing them - I don't want to get to the end of my life and realize God had so much more for me and I missed out because I was disobedient to God's call and instructions in my life.

So, when you see those doomsday headlines or hear depressing newscasts, remember, the God of the universe is looking out of you. He has a plan and a purpose for your life and it isn't to harm you but is for your good. Because one thing you can always count on with God - He is always good and He is good all the time.
~ Blessings, Bronte

Friday, June 12, 2009


I am reading this wonderful book by Joann Weaver called Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World. I got it from the library but I know I will have to add it to my permanent collection. Some books need to be savored more than once. There is a nice little Bible study in the back, and has God ever been stepping on my toes through it!

The book takes a look at the story of Mary and Martha. I'm sure you are probably familiar with it. It's the one where Mary is sitting at Jesus' feet and Martha comes bustling in and tells Jesus to make her sister get to work instead of lazing around. Jesus gently rebukes her. I have heard quite a few sermons about this, usually with Martha painted as the bad guy (or gal, in this case). But if you look further on, there are a couple more times that this family appears in Scripture - one is at an even more famous Bible story - when Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead.

Martha has changed from the first time we see her - distracted and irritable and frazzled. Now, even though she has a houseful of mourners, she runs out to meet Jesus. This, in itself is a big change for her - leaving work to be still. She then professes her faith in Jesus, not only that He can do anything but also that He IS the Son of God. (We sometimes take the idea of Jesus as the Son of God for granted, as in why wouldn't anyone NOT believe it? But I wonder, if I lived back then, didn't have Scriptures and some man came along with that claim - would I have believed or would I have been skeptical?) Then Martha does something that demonstrates just how changed she really is - she calls Mary to come see Jesus. She calls Mary away from the preparations and people to come be still with Jesus.

Has Martha changed her personality? Probably not. She is still a bustling, type A personality, but instead of letting her personality and natural tendencies rule her, she demonstrates she has a teachable heart. The Bible doesn't say what Martha said in response to Jesus' rebuke, but based on the changes by the next time we see her, it is obvious that Martha didn't let hurt feelings or the need to be right keep her from being teachable.

My first response was, of course I'm teachable. I love to learn new things. But God gently rebuked me, too. How many times do I defend my position on some matter or correct people when I have the "right" information? Is it really necessary to correct people if it isn't something important? Why do I need to be right all the time? Would I rather be right than loving? How many times have I gotten a "feeling" about somebody and then have it turn out right - am I sorrowful for the situation or do I feel vindicated that my "feeling" was right? And while many times my motivation is to help someone, I can't deny that sometimes I just feel smug satisfaction that I proved someone wrong and won the argument or point.

Don't get me wrong - I am not saying if someone is walking around spouting false theology we should just pat them on the back or if someone is blatantly walking in sin, we shouldn't ever confront them. Priscilla and Aquilla are a good example of this - they gently rebuked and corrected a fellow believer when his preaching was off - but they did it in love. Rebuke and correction should always, always, always be done in a spirit of love and concern for the other person. The Bible says to "speak the truth in love." Love is not always all fuzzy and sweet and sometimes, if we really love someone, we may have to say something that is hard for that person to hear.

However, if any part of you starts to feel self-righteous or superior about being right and the other person being wrong, it is probably better to keep your mouth closed. Galatians 6:1 Paul says, "Brethren, even if anone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted." In other words, you better check your motives before you proceed.

Martha had a teachable heart. She was able to put aside her personal feelings, really listen to what Jesus said and let those words soak into her innermost being and change her. How many times do I resist letting God's Words soak into me and affect change because I want to be right or get defensive? May God grant me a soft, teachable heart and a humble spirit to receive even the rebukes.
~ Blessings, Bronte

Sunday, June 7, 2009


I am excited to say that summer has arrived at our house! School has been out one week, and I can't begin to tell you how much I am looking forward to 12 weeks (well 11 weeks now) of being with my kids, of not having to grade papers or rush around.

This past weekend we had a lot of graduation activities to go to. Not only did we actually have to attend graduation but my husband and I had eight parties to go to. It was a lot of fun, eating good food, hanging out, visiting, and did I say eating?

I always get nostolgic as I watch the fresh, eager faces of newly graduated high school seniors. They are full of hopes and dreams and possibilities. I remember standing there with my graduation cake that had a globe on it in blue and green icing. I really believed that the world was mine and I could do anything, be anything.

As the years go by, you lose that wide eyed optimism and big dreams are replaced by reality. But it was a good reminder to me that dreams and hopes are still mine, despite being 36 instead of 18 yo. The speaker at graduation was Senator Jim Jordan. He told this story about his favorite movie, Chariots of Fire. Apparently, the two main characters raced each other (each was considered one of the best). Little won, so this other guy was talking to his girlfriend. He was saying that since he lost and wasn't the best because "he ran to win." His girlfriend replied that "you can't win unless you run."

Isn't that true of all of us, whether we are 18 or 80? If we don't run, if we don't get into the race, there is no chance of winning at all. Paul talks about the a race that every Christian is in, that we are to put aside the things of the past and press on toward the mark, the high calling of God. It hit me that the high calling of God doesn't have to be taking on the world. It can mean being faithful in your own backyard, neighborhood or community. It means showing kindness and God's love to the cranky clerk at the store or taking the time to help a friend or stopping your to do list to listen to your child. We all have a choice. We can be in the race or we can just watch. I want to be in the race. At least then I have a chance of winning.
~ blessings, Bronte


And this means that I will actually be putting more posts up! I looked at the dates and wow! it's been a little while. I promise to do better. :) We got out of school on May 29th (which also happened to be my 16th anniversary) and last weekend was taken up with lots and lots of graduation activities. My husband and I had 8 graduation parties to attend. We also have a couple more in the coming weeks. My goal was to make it to all my students' parties and since I had only 10, I think I might make it.

I got teary as I looked at all their fresh, young faces, filled with hope about their futures. One thing that stuck out to me that the graduation speaker said (it was Sen. Jim Jordan!), you can't win unless you run.

Monday, May 25, 2009


Last night we went to a cook out at my husband's aunt and uncle's house. This aunt is his mom's sister. He and his first cousin, Cindy were born only about 12 hours apart, and our kids are the same ages, too. Cindy has an older sister, Jacque whose son Max is about the same age as my oldest, Brock. Did you get all that? lol All together, there were four boys and two girls, and did they have fun playing with each other.

We had a cookout with way too much food and a table groaning with sweets of all kinds - cookies, pies, ice cream. Then we went into the backyard and watched as the kids played. It was wonderful watching them run around and have so much fun. They didn't have any tech toys or expensive things. Mostly it was balls and baseball gloves and cornhole and racing each other. I even played kickball with the kids (of course, now I can hardly walk since I twisted my ankle in my sandals which were not made for rounding the bases! lol)

There is just something about watching the innocent play of children that is almost magical. Maybe because childhood is so fleeting and the days seem to feel like water running through your hands.

The evening came and a chill hit the air. We all started to shiver. So Uncle Lee started a fire in his little fire pot thingy. We drew our chairs around. There was laughing and giggling and teasing and playing. I took a picture of all the cousins together which represented three families. I thought as I looked at the picture, they will see this photo of all of them together when they are older and remember this night as one of those perfect times. We'll probably say to each other as we get older, "Remember when..."

It occurred to me then that I am so lucky. I have my parents right here in town with us. My husband has parents, plus extended family, right here in town too. My kids have cousins that they see and play with all the time. My youngest son and his cousin Jonathan are almost inseperable. (I think Brody would like it if he could have JJ live at our house one week and then go live at his house the next week and so on lol)

But not everyone is surrounded by family or even friends. I and my family are blessed. God just nudged my soul last night and said, "Share your blessings." So, the next holiday that rolls around, I'll be looking for someone whose family is maybe far away or who has recently lost a loved one and will be spending their holidays alone. Loneliness is always lonely but it just seems to be magnified on a holiday when it seems like everyone else has someone and you don't. I'll be praying for those I know of that are far from home (like our troops in Iraq) or are newly widowed or that have lost a child.

It would be fairly easy for me to start to feel guilty about my blessings, but that isn't what God would have me to do. HE blessed me and to feel anything other than thankfulness and privilege is a slap in HIS face. BUT, I do believe He wants us to see our blessings and not take them for granted, and then out of that thankfulness and gratitude to share them with others so they in turn can feel God's blessing too. So, as we head into the balmy days of summer, I'll be looking around for people I can share my blessings with. That is the best way to tell God thanks!
~ blessings, Bronte

Friday, May 22, 2009


I have been praying about where to start with my writing. Currently, I write articles for our local Christian radio station's newsletter. I enjoy interviewing these people, most of whom have overcome great obstacles or tragedies. However, it is not high paying, nor does it take up a lot of my time, really.

Because I just am not sure where to start, I thought it would be a great idea to take an online writing class, to brush up on things, to connect with other writers, to get the benefit of someone who has been there and done that. Unfortunately, there are a lot of frauds on the internet so I combed through many sites. Finally, I found it! Jerry Jenkins' Christian Writers Guild offers online courses. They are very high quality and you are assigned a mentor. Perfect.

Perfect, except for one small detail. The coursework was expensive, as in major investment for us. I started praying. I told God I felt He had led me to this site, but how was I supposed to ask my husband, sweet and kind as he is, for this much money on something that is NOT a sure thing? How could I ask to spend that kind of money on something I had NOT shown a self-discipline in up to this point. Sure, I am planning on structured writing time every day this summer, but up until now, I haven't shown that I was willing or able to accomplish that.

Let me explain about my husband. He is the greatest guy in the world. He has integrity and he is even tempered and has lots of integrity. He is also a realist. I am a dreamer. Together, we make the perfect team- he keeps me tethered to the earth so I don't fly off into the clouds. He is the one that asks the questions to take me from an idea to a reality. In turn, I (or at least I hope I do) inspire him to dream a little and get away from hard facts for a while. Neither of us are going to change significantly but we do complement each other - a sum greater than its parts, so to speak.

I was really praying about not only how I was going to approach this or even if I should, but also which coursework that I should pursue - fiction or nonfiction. While my dream is to write a book and I plan to start that, the hard truth is writing nonfiction is what pays the bills for most writers, me included. Either course track - fiction or nonfiction - required a commitment of money and time. I was torn.

Last night, I opened my email to find a message from the director. Of course, it wasn't specifically for me but for all the people on the guy's mailing list. They had just started a new course. It was MUCH less expensive (as in at least $1000 less!) and it was for a much shorter time frame. There was my answer! I will not have nearly as much problem asking to spend the price of this course, nor will I balk at the time commitment.

I asked God to make a way. And He did! I know it is a small thing in the grand scheme of things, but it is a specific, tailored answer to prayer. Not only is the way to take an online course and get serious about my writing while having contact with other writers and having accountability happen, but my prayer of finding a mentor who has walked this road before was also answered!!!!

"My God will supply all your needs, according to His riches..." Every day God shows me that I can trust Him with everything, even the small details because His love is perfect, because He has plans and a purpose for me, because He wants to prosper me and not to harm me. It's so awesome to know that God is not just the God of the universe but a personal God that is involved intimately in my life!
~blessings, Bronte

Sunday, May 17, 2009


Now isn't that a question? Not worrying was one of my New Year's goals for this year. Interestingly, I've had lots of opportunities to practice this skill but not always very successfully. How do you not worry? Is it really a sin if you do? (this one I can answer - it is because we are commanded point blank 25x in the New Testament - I know - Ouch!)

I was getting some books at the library the other week and decided to look up a couple by Beth Moore. I had been wanting to read Get Out of That Pit, so off I went to that section. While browsing, I found another book I've been meaning to read - Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World. I took that one home too, thinking this will be a nice, little read encouraging me to chill instead of work. That is something I can totally relate to.

Instead, I found this paragraph: "The word used most often for worry and anxiety in the New Testament come from the same Greek word, meridzoe which means "to be divided, to be pulled in opposite directions, to choke"... The Old English word for worry menat "to gnaw." Like a dog with a bone, a worrier chews on his problems all day long. Jesus warned us specifically against this kind of chronic anxiety when he said,"Therefore I tell you, stop being perpetually uneasy (anxious and worried) about your life" (Matthew 6:25, AMP) Why is the Bible adamant about our avoiding fear and worry? Because God konws worry short-circuits our relationship with Him. It fixes our eyes on our situation rather than on our Savior."

Does that strike a sore spot in you too? I had to reread it several times, just taking in that truth. Worry chokes us. We swallow down those anxieties and they get caught in the throat - too big for us to swallow and digest yet still we swallow them down. The thought hit me that if I don't put something in my mouth, I have very little chance of choking on it. Instead, when I take a bite out of some circumstance or suck in that thought and let it wallow around, instead of trying to swallow it down, I need to spit it back out at God in confession, discussion or praise.

There is that simple song that says, "Why worry when you can pray", but it really IS that simple. "Be anxious for nothing but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace which surpasses all expectation will keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." (Phil. 4:6,7) It's rather ironic that for years I told people this was my life's verse as I worried away and was filled with anxiety.

If we unpack that verse, the answer is very simple and right there for us. First there is the command - "Be anxious for nothing." It doesn't say try not to be anxious or strive not to worry, but DON'T DO IT! God knew that was hard to do so He gave us an alternative to anxiety - "but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God." Then He gives us the incentive or the WHY we should do this instead of worry - "the peace which surpasses our expectations." And what does that peace do? It will "keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." This is right where our minds need to be - not on the circumstances but on Jesus. (again another old song comes to mind - "Turn your eyes upon Jesus/look full in His wonderful face/ and the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace")

In the next verse, Paul shares with us the way to avoid anxiety to begin with - what to keep our minds occupied with - "Finally bretheren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything is worthy of praise, dwell on these things."

I find it interesting that the very first thing on this list is what is true. How many times do we go down the anxiety rabbit trail based on untruth? I know I can work myself into a tizzy about what might have beens or even miscommunications or plain old untruths. The ONLY way we will know truth is if we read and study it in God's Word. Closely studying REAL truth tends to make things that are false more evident.

So there it is in three verses located in Philippians - the recipe to throw worry out the door for good. I have always thought not worrying was a nice thing to attain to, but surely God didn't expect us to really NOT worry about ANYTHING. But He shows us right here how to do it.

I am sitting here having a major DUH moment. It was there all along, but my eyes didn't see nor did my ears really hear (I mean how many sermons have I heard on this subject???). The light bulb has finally turned on for me. These verses work if we believe that God is good and we trust Him. Otherwise, we won't want to turn to Him nor will we trust His answers if we do. Maybe God just needed to lay the groundwork for the other things before He could turn the lightbulb on for me.

Isn't that just like God? He cares enough to prepare my heart and mind for a truth that is life changing so that when I get it, I can really get it. Don't we serve an awesome, loving, HUGE God?
~Blessings, Bronte

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


Morning rolled around and I was NOT wanting to get up. My bed felt soft and inviting and the rain was coming down outside. It was a great day to stay under the covers, but unfortunately, my job doesn't give rain days! Too bad huh?

But off I went to school, feeling just a little blue. At this time of year, with only a couple weeks of school left, I am eager for summer vacation like most of my students. So, it wasn't with enthusiasm that I greeted my classes today, but ironically, it was my students that brought a smile to my face.

First, in my junior class, we are going through the Shakespeare play, Twelfth Night. We were on the final song by Feste when the bell rang the day before and I instructed the boy that was "playing" Feste to come prepared to give the song. He arrived with music and everything. By the end, we were all singing along with him.

Then, in came my seniors. They had video reports that were supposed to reflect our play Taming of the Shrew. They were hysterical. By the time class was done, my stomach hurt from laughing so hard. I then shared the videos with my sophomore class and a few others.

By the time I went home, I had a smile on my face. It's amazing what a really great belly laugh will do for your attitude and mood. I guess Provers is right when it says, "A merry heart does good like medicine." Guess God's wisdom still can't be beat!
~ Blessings, Bronte

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Baseball season has officially started! I'm tired already. lol With two boys, both going different directions, often on the same night, I feel sort of like we are starting on a two month journey and I need to be storing up my energy for that race every afternoon from when the kids get out of school until when they have to be at their appointed places for the games. Whew! Some prayers for strength and a sense of humor (and good quick meal ideas!) would sure come in handy! :)

Last night was both of my boys first game of the season. We had the excitement of wearing their uniforms for the first time. We also had the angst of: "where is my glove?" "I can't find a belt for these pants and they're going to fall down!" and "I'll do my homework AFTER the game." (to which I said no! lol) I dug out my chair and packed our water bottles and the dog's chew bone and off my youngest son, Brody and I went to his first game. He informed me on the way over, he was going to get a homerun every time he got up to bat. I told him that was aiming maybe a tad bit too high, but even hitting the ball every time he got up to bat would be a great goal!

Being one of the older kids on the team now (it's for 6-8 year olds and Brody will be 8 yo in June), he did very well. He hit the ball and got on base every time he got up to bat. He even hit a homerun. I cheered loudly and wanted to tell everyone, "That's MY boy that hit that one!" He caught balls and tagged the other team out. Overall, I thought the game had been a success, both for the team (we won 17-21, not much defense lol) and for Brody personally.

Brody climbed into the car, and I said, "Wow! That was a great game, buddy! And you got a home run! You'll have to tell Dad about that one." His head drooped, "Yeah, but I had three errors, Mom," he said, his voice full of disappointment. Amazing, I had watched that game and thought how well the team had done in general and how well my son had done in particular, and I don't think it was totally a mom's bias. But somehow it wasn't enough. He hadn't done well enough. Instead of looking at the good things, he was focused on the three things he had done wrong.

While I am all for learning from our mistakes and I dont' believe in giving kids false praise or puffing up their egos, I also believe in acknowleding a job well done. I thought my son had done a good job. He thought he hadn't done good enough. After talking about what he could do about those errors (learn what he had done wrong and do it differently for a couple and one that there really wasn't anything he could have done), I told Brody that he needed to be happy with his game being good enough, even though it wasn't perfect. Rarely, do we give a perfect performance in anything.

It made me think how many times, we as Christians aren't content with good enough. We want perfect or better or bigger or higher. I wonder how many times that God shakes His head at us and thinks, "But child have enough. You don't need perfect - you just need enough." I wonder how many times, instead of being thankful for enough, I have felt it wasn't good enough or I wasn't good enough. God tells us His faith is sufficient for us and that our HIS strength is made perfect in OUR weaknesses." HE is always just enough for every need, every obstacle, every difficulty. He always gives us just enough to make it through every difficult place. Sometimes, we make it through by the skin of our teeth and sometimes, we hit it out of the park. But HIS grace and mercy and love are always just enough.
~ Blessings, Bronte

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


My first thought for my blog was a kind of review of the things I learned in the Esther study we just concluded at church. It was truly excellent and I learned a lot, but this morning I was reading in Deuteronomy (yes, I'm still trying to make my way through the entire Bible this year - I just keep getting sidetracked!).

It's always interesting to read a Biblical character's last words to a person or group. II Timothy is Paul's exhortation to his spiritual son Timothy before Paul was executed. The beginning of Deuteronomy are the parting words Moses had for the Israelites before they entered the Promised Land. Moses knew he wouldn't be going in because he had disobeyed the Lord, but he wanted to get a few things off his chest before the people crossed the Jordan. After all, who knew the people better than Moses? He had been with them for the last 40 years, listening to their constant complaining and whining. Maybe in some ways, God's punishment was a blessing in disguise. I'm sure Moses was tired. Or maybe he was feeling a bit bitter - after all, the children of Israel hadn't been too exemplary in their behavior either. In any comparison, Moses would have come out ahead in the good vs. bad debate. Whatever his feelings, this chapter shows Moses' great love for this cantankerous and stubborn people.

A little while ago, I wrote about Deuteronomy 8 where Moses tells them why they were in the wilderness. In this chapter, Moses tells them that God is going to go before them to destroy their enemies because, get this, the peoples of the earth needed to know that God was going to fulfill His covenant to His people and because the enemies of the Israelites were wicked. Moses mentions several times, that God wasn't doing this because of THEIR righteousness.

Then he goes on to say that's because you aren't very righteous at all. He starts to recount the times the Israelites blew it, big time. Interestingly, three different times God was so angry with the Israelites, He was ready to destroy them, but each time Moses fasted from food AND water to intercede to God on the behalf of the Israelites. One time, God even offered to make a great people out of Moses. Moses turned Him down and instead pled for his people.

Moses had alot of faults. He was fearful and he had quite a temper, but he was just as passionate in his loves. He LOVED the people of Israel. He was willing to go without, not just for a day or three or even a week, but for 40 days and nights. For people who were hard to love, difficult to handle and annoying as all get out!

It hit me square between the eyes, I complain plenty myself. When I spend my time putting down the current administrations decisions, how much time have I spent in prayer for those same people? Is it even close to the same amount of time? Hardly! When I whine about how this person or that person has offended me or hurt my feelings or hasn't met my needs, how much have I prayed for them?

I came to the very uncomfortable conclusion that if I spent HALF the amount of time I spend talking in prayer, I would see some real differences, if not in others, then certainly in my own life, attitudes and ideas. It made me squirm to realize I spent far more time praying about my own concerns and fears than I did interceding on the behalf of others.

What would happen if I took every complaint, concern and need to Christ instead of talking about it to someone else or worrying about it in my mind? I'm excited to find out! How about you?
~ Blessings, Bronte

Sunday, April 26, 2009


I know it isn't exactly the same, but I feel like I can relate to Hannah in the Bible. I have always, always wanted a dog of my own (and yes, I know that wanting a child is NOT the same as wanting a dog, but bear with me). My parents are not animal people. They DID let me have a parade of small animals that could be kept in cages. We started with a hamster that lived so long it's fur went grey. The next few weren't quite as lucky. Then I got one gerbil and ended up with nine! That was a bit of surprise. I also had a guinea pig that died of pneumonia. Go figure. After having a couple of these small, furry animals for my own children, I appreciate anew how much my parents were willing to give when it came to having a pet. (personally, I think a cat is about the easiest pet ever)

But no matter how much I loved Chippy, Ginger, Spice, Cleo and all the others, I would still spend hours in the pet store drooling over the puppies. I'd bring a little pad of paper and add up all the things I'd need and how much it would cost. (btw, just a heads up - NEVER buy a puppy from the pet store!)

When I got married, I thought at long last I'd be able to have a dog. But, although my husband had a cat when I met him, he was not an animal person. I was married 14 years before I finally got my puppy. He was so cute - he looked like a little stuffed animal. I told God when I got my puppy that if it was at all possible, I'd really like to use him to minister to people, to bring them cheer and hope. There is nothing like doggy kisses to brighten your day.

Well, Kipper is now about 20 months old. He has been through puppy kindergarten, basic obedience, advanced obedience, gotten his canine good citizenship, and today, he passed his certification to be a therapy dog. One of the things I've always dreamed about came true today. My plan is to not just visit in nursing homes (and the elderly LOVE Kipper because he looks just like Lassie) but to also go to area schools to teach kids how to interact with dogs. In our county alone, there were 215 dog bites, many of those being children. Dogs can be a wonderful part of our lives, but many children either haven't had the chance to be around dogs or have had bad experiences. I want to open that world to them - the joy of communicating and sharing companionship with another species - and today, when Kipper passed that test, my dream came true.

I was so nervous yesterday and today. I even felt kind of sick to my stomach. Before we left, I just said, "God, either we pass or we don't. It's up to You." In His goodness, we did pass. I know many of you are thinking well, does God really care about someone's dog? The answer is God can use anything that we fully give to Him. I am looking forward to seeing how God will use Kipper in someone's life, even if is just bringing a smile to their face on an otherwise melancholy day.
~ Blessings, Bronte

Friday, April 24, 2009


I was at the library the other week, and a title just jumped out at me. It was called Stuck. I knew I had to get it. I wanted to see what someone thought of being stuck from a secular perspective.

So, I started reading, and not really all that surprisingly, I got about three or four chapters in and the author started talking about how religion is a type of being stuck in the past. Bound by traditions and rules that no longer work in our current world. At first I felt rather indignant. Then I realized she was right. Religion WILL keep you stuck.

What I have is a relationship. A relationship with Christ. It's different because with Christ, you aren't stuck. With Christ, it is possible to overcome strongholds, move past old hurts, let go of unforgivness, love the unlovable, be filled with the Holy Spirit, show the fruits of the spirit. None of those things are possible on your own. Being in relationship with Christ is the only way to be unstuck. It's through HIS power that we are able to "throw off the chains that so easily bind us and run the race that is set before us." That's not being stuck. That's living in the fullness of Christ.

So, don't give me that old time religion. Give me an everchanging, yet always reliable relationship with my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He is the only one with the true power to set us free. Free indeed!
~ Blessings, Bronte

Sunday, April 19, 2009


As I have said in a couple posts, I am studying Beth Moore's Bible study, Esther: It's tough being a woman. God has been teaching me a lot through this Old Testament soap opera. (Honestly, Days of Our Lives has nothing over the book of Esther) In each lesson, she tells a way that it is tough being a woman. One of those is "It is tough being a woman in the tight grip of fear." Gee, do you think I can relate? lol

I mentioned in my last post that you see a theme, called the reversal of destiny in the book of Esther in many ways. Mrs. Moore talked about the way we can turn these sayings around using Scripture. I realized one thing I can do against fear is to wield my weapon. What weapon you might ask? (if you know me, this question would be said in some alarm because the idea of an actual weapon in my hands would be a very scary thing! lol) This weapon I'm talking about, though, can't harm you, but it sure sends the evil one running for cover! It is God's Word. It is THE truth. The Bible tells us that Satan is the father of lies and he is very, very good at deceiving Christians. Granted, sometimes it doesn't take much to get us to believe his lies as we are just looking for an excuse to give in to defeat or sin.

The only way to defeat Satan, though, is to take a page out of Jesus's book when He was tempted. He didn't argue with Satan or try to reason with him or justify anything. He simply quoted Scripture. And it was as effective as kryptanite is on Superman. But the thing is, we can quote Scripture all we want, but if we don't believe it and trust that God is speaking the truth, it doesn't work quite as well.

Then it hit me how all of this is tied together and how it works to free us from the stronghold of fear. TRUTH leads us to TRUST, and TRUST lets us BELIEVE the TRUTH. And the real root of fear is a lack of trust, isn't it? I mean, if I fear being stuck that means I don't trust that God has a plan for me.

There is a verse that says, "Perfect love casts out fear." I think that means that GOD's perfect love casts out fear because we can trust Him with everything. A couple weeks ago, I was sitting in Sunday school class and we were having a discussion about Colossians. The leader said, "It's not all about me." And my first thought was but what about ME? I mean, don't I count for anything? Don't my needs and desires have a place too? Almost immediately the verse came to my mind about GOD meeting all my needs. I didn't have to worry or fear that my needs wouldn't be met because my Heavenly Father, who takes care of the very birds in the air loves me and has the best in mind for me, even when it doesn't appear to make much earthly sense.

But in order to trust, I need to know the truth. It is one of those circular things, but this time in a good way. Ideally, the more I learn truth, the more I will trust in God which will lead me to seek more of His truth which will in turn strengthen my trust, and, well, I think you get the picture. And when I start speaking the truth, Satan plugs his ears and runs away. He is all about deception and illusion. The Truth is too bright a light for him. He prefers the dark.

Jesus IS the light of the world. With Him, there are no shadows of doubt as He shines the light of His truth into the darkest corners of the soul. And doesn't light make our fears so much smaller and more manageable?
~ Blessings, Bronte

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


What in the world is peripety you may be asking. It's a nifty little word that Beth Moore shared in her Bible study, Esther: It's Tough Being a Woman. What it means is a sudden reversal of destiny or fortune, that event or moment when the turn actually comes. I think I experienced peripety last night as I watched the video for session 6 of her Bible study.

She was talking about how you can be on the road with what looks like a certain future when God comes along and picks you up and sets you on a completely different path. As you know, I've been feeling stuck, like I'm getting nowhere fast in my goals and what I feel is my calling. She said something that struck me right between my eyes: "It's tough being a woman when you feel responsible for the how."

The peripetious moment in the book of Esther didn't come when Esther went before the king, risking her life. It didn't come when she confronted Haman and revealed her identity. No, the reveral of destiny came when Xerxes had a sleepless night and called for the book of records to be opened. Lo and behold the book opened to an accounting of Mordecai saving the king from a plot against him, an accomplishment that was never really recognized. (side note to self - when I feel passed by for recognition, maybe there is a divine purpose for it and God's timing is better - hmmm) In other words, Esther, even though she had to get over her fears and be brave, still didn't have to worry about the "how." She only had to obey.

I can hear my fears loud and clear in my brain - what if you're no good? what if nobody ever wants to read what you write? what if... how will you... where do you find.... But, I don't have to worry about the how; I just have to obey. Another part of the session hit me too, although probably not quite the way Mrs. Moore originally intended. One of her last points was "your story is good enough to tell." I got chill bumps when she said that. It was like God was speaking directly to me.

So, even though I don't know how this will work out and I feel like the country cousin come to visit in New York City when I think about the business of writing, I don't have to worry about that. I just have to obey, pick up my pen and write. God will just have to help me be brave, but He does tell us that whatever we have need of, to ask and He will give it.
~ Blessings, Bronte