"I can't help it. I just get so mad and I start yelling. It's just who I am. I can't stop it,"she explains her outburst. Over and over the pattern is repeated, wrecking havoc on our family. Praise God for His wisdom that He generously provides a seeking parent. Consequences are set and a game plan is established.  The grueling part is implementing these. Prayer is petitioned surrounding the heart of this loved child. Then...a good day. She even offered to clean the basement. Two-days into this, I realize, it's the prayers of those I trust whom have lifted up my child creating the change in her little heart. God has answered these prayers and my daughter's.
A week later at breakfast reading Jesus Calling for Kids, she reads,
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 2 Corinthians 5:17"….I want you to do great things for My kingdom. First, though, you have to give Me control of your old life. Let Me have your old worries, you old struggles, your old temptations and sins. I will throw them all away so that I can work in your life.
She pauses, contemplating. "Mom, that's just like me." She has an odd way of reading my mind!
But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of Him. 2 Corinthians 2:14a
We will all miss the mark from time to time. I mess up daily! Hourly! But God chooses to use us despite ourselves to spread the good news of Christ to those in our influence.
What past sins and habits are you holding onto right now? "Let it go!" as Elsa would sing. Give these to God. Even though we are inadequate, He will victoriously use us for His glory.


I like to snuggle up in a cozy blanket. Not just in my quiet times, but any time. Sometimes even in the summer. Weird, I know. I followed my bent as I snuggled on the couch in my suite at the Broadmoor. Turning my gaze from the fireplace, I focused on the long, elegant dining table adorned with a huge hurricane shaped centerpiece and flowers. Hmmm. I wonder what it feels like to sit in those large, plush dining chairs, high-backed and heavy as you slide out from under the table. And what if I sat at that table, picturing myself invited to the Lord's marriage supper? I was off the couch in a second (don't worry, my blanket came with me).
At your banquet table, where delectable appetizers sit at each setting, chilled sparkling water dances in each glass, linens are folded, candles flicker, full-table service is offered, and I am adorned with the most beautiful gown of righteousness.
Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out, "Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us exult and give Him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure"-- for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints.
And the angel said to me, "Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb." And he said to me, "These are the true words of God." Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, "You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God." For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. Revelation 19:6-10
Surrounded by authentic, vibrant worship. Wouldn't the goosebumps just rise all over your body?
At that table, the bride is ready (vs. 7). I'm luck to be a woman. I get this. I've been the bride. But to Christ, the Church or believers in Christ are His bride (men included). Just as the engineer chose me, Christ chooses those who will believe in His ministry. As a woman, I know the work and effort the bride goes through before revealing herself to her groom. It's daunting because she wants to look her best. And in that day of the Lord, the song will ring out, "…the Bride is ready.." The Church is ready for Christ to see her face to face. And the Bride is wearing pure, bright white, stunning linen of the finest thread. She's done the work of preparation; not hair and make-up but seeking Him continually, being made holy, allowing the Holy Spirit to empower her to stand firm no matter what and worshiping God. And at that marriage of Christ and His bride, the preparation behind us, we will be complete in His presence at the banquet table and all that remains is worshiping God. Maranatha!
Blessed are those who are invited (9). We are invited to be His Bride. The invitation is blessing enough. After we stand through trials of this life, we will be gorgeously adorned and ready to look Him in the face. Be sure you'll be there. This is one table you won't want to miss!


Indulge me. I've just been prayed over by a Nigerian momma in broken English and her native tongue, and celebrated my 23-year old Nigerian immigrant neighbor securing her first job. My first reaction: write this moment down.
Since obtaining Social Security documents to work in the United States a month ago, I've listened to her apply for numerous jobs, transportation consistently the obstacle in the interview stage. Less than a week ago, she asked, "C-H-I-P-O-L-T-E, you know the place in Apple Valley?" I agreed to drive her to the interview. Then the second interview. Then the third. Every journey, leery of serving and loving in a non-beneficial way.Yet between my ears reverberate, Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as if working for the Lord, not men (Colossians 3:23), and Your labor in the Lord is not in vain (1 Corinthians 15:58).  
And now the celebration and unexpected blessing. I feel affirmed and in the center of His will for my days. I'm thankful to write. The opportunity to look back and recall His hand.

I will bless the Lord who guides me;  even at night my heart instructs me. I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me. Psalm 16:7-8
Record the Lord's guidance and instruction in your life.


Cheyenne Lake Suite, The Broadmoor, Colorado Springs, CO.
Sitting in the beautiful suite, surrounded by luxury I can not afford and did not earn, I marvel. Just one day prior, my stomach in knots, constantly breathing deeply, placing my trust in Christ as I ventured far from home and away from my family. And then I am shown to my accommodation: a suite on Lake Cheyenne. Seriously God?
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as (God) chose us in (Christ) before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him. In love (God) predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of His will, to the praise of His glorious grace, which He has blessed us in the Beloved (Christ). In (Christ) we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of (God's) grace, which He lavished upon us in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of His will, according to His purpose, which He set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things to Him, things in heaven and things on earth.
In (Christ) we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of (God) who works all things according to the counsel of His will… Ephesians 1:3-11
Picture it. God, Creator, Father, before the creation of the world, having a strategic planning meeting (isn't that what we'd call it today?) with His Son and the Holy Spirit. And they create: "Let's make this big! Let's create beings like us. Let's make Becky, Joe, Kathy…. And they're going to have a problem because they won't be exactly like us, they won't be perfect. And then We'll be the Hero. We'll offer to save _(your name)_ and they'll have to accept Our offer. (Like a Hollywood epic where the hero extends a hand to the distressed hanging on the side of the sky scraper.) The distressed is totally unable to save himself. And the hero, Christ will extend His hand because He's strong, rich and powerful."
Forgive my imagination, this may be a far leap from actuality. But the truth is, before creation God chose us. He made a plan to swoop in and save us, the distressed. Because He had more than enough resources to go around (He's rich) and He wanted to give us a gift, His saving grace. But He didn't stop there. After we are saved from the life-or-death situation, He lavishes us with gifts. We are made holy, blameless, an heir to the kingdom, daughters and sons, and offered everything we need for a rich, full and meaningful life. 
Surrounded by earthly luxury, I understand: God is this extravagant! And I did not deserve it. Because of His undeserved gift, He blessed me. I am so undeserving. He's given me understanding of His mystery of salvation, Jesus as my scapegoat, an inheritance (adopted me as His daughter) and I am His praise and glory. Me?
And then He says, ask for more! I have it to give:
  • a spirit of wisdom 
  • revelation in knowing Him
  • enlightened mind so that I understand:
    • my hope
    • my inheritance
    • the power available to me. (Ephesians 1:17-19)

This is my God! In my distress, He offers me His hand and I have accepted. Then He gives me more. I could have declined His gift, just as I could have chosen to leave the suite and head home on the first flight back to MSP, but similar to His grace, I am shown extreme generosity. And I accept. Is this your God? Accept His gift today.