Fuel Your Walk Friday

Fuel your walk with some Jesus and Joe.

I love Jesus and I love me an iced cuppa fresh cold brew halved with vanilla almond milk. What better way to combine the two and perk up the beginning of your weekend, than to “Fuel Your Walk” with some Jesus and Joe. Once a week, I will be posting a little snippet, thought, quote or question to ponder in relation to your walk with Christ. So grab your favorite mug, pour yourself a delicious cuppa Joe and get comfy as you let this question percolate in your mind:

“The very purpose of Christ’s coming into the world was that he might offer up his life as a sacrifice for the sins of men. He came to die. This is the heart of Christmas.” -Rev. Billy Graham

How will you make Christ the heart of your Christmas?

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life. -John‬ ‭3‬:‭16‬ ‭

He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God. And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.
‭-John‬ ‭1‬:‭10‬-‭14‬ ‭

Fuel Your Walk Friday

Fuel your walk with some Jesus and Joe.

I love Jesus and I love me an iced cuppa fresh cold brew halved with vanilla almond milk. What better way to combine the two and perk up the beginning of your weekend, than to “Fuel Your Walk” with some Jesus and Joe. Once a week, I will be posting a little snippet, thought, quote or question to ponder in relation to your walk with Christ. So grab your favorite mug, pour yourself a delicious cuppa Joe and get comfy as you let this question percolate in your mind:

“We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature – trees, flowers, grass – grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence…We need silence to be able to touch souls.” -Mother Theresa

Will you make time today to seek Him in silence?

For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from him. -Psalm 62‬:‭5‬

The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul that seeks him. -Lamentations‬ ‭3‬:‭25‬ ‭

Fuel Your Walk Friday

Fuel your walk with some Jesus and Joe.

I love Jesus and I love me an iced cuppa fresh cold brew halved with vanilla almond milk. What better way to combine the two and perk up the beginning of your weekend, than to “Fuel Your Walk” with some Jesus and Joe. Once a week, I will be posting a little snippet, thought, quote or question to ponder in relation to your walk with Christ. So grab your favorite mug, pour yourself a delicious cuppa Joe and get comfy as you let this question percolate in your mind:

“A man who does not trust in God lives a life of instability in every facet.” -K.M. Logan

Are there areas of your life where your trust in God needs to grow? What will you put in His hands today?

But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. -James 1:6

Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God. -Psalm 20:7

Fuel Your Walk Friday

Fuel your walk with some Jesus and Joe.

I love Jesus and I love me an iced cuppa fresh cold brew halved with vanilla almond milk. What better way to combine the two and perk up the beginning of your weekend, than to “Fuel Your Walk” with some Jesus and Joe. Once a week, I will be posting a little snippet, thought, quote or question to ponder in relation to your walk with Christ. So grab your favorite mug, pour yourself a delicious cuppa Joe and get comfy as you let this question percolate in your mind:

“When we’re planted in Christ, we can grow into a person who is bearing fruit.” -Lynn Cowell

Are your roots growing down deep in Christ or are they planted elsewhere? What is one step you can take today to cultivate your relationship with Jesus?

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. -Galatians‬ ‭5‬:‭22‬-‭23‬ ‭NIV

Their roots will be firm in the house of the Lord. They will grow strong and healthy in the courtyards of our God. When they get old, they will still bear fruit. Like young trees they will stay fresh and strong.
‭-Psalm‬ ‭92‬:‭13‬-‭14‬ ‭NIRV‬‬

Fuel Your Walk Friday

Fuel your walk with some Jesus and Joe.

I love Jesus and I love me an iced cuppa fresh cold brew halved with vanilla almond milk. What better way to combine the two and perk up the beginning of your weekend, than to “Fuel Your Walk” with some Jesus and Joe. Once a week, I will be posting a little snippet, thought, quote or question to ponder in relation to your walk with Christ. So grab your favorite mug, pour yourself a delicious cuppa Joe and get comfy as you let this question percolate in your mind:

“We can be tired, weary and emotionally distraught, but after spending time alone with God, we find that He injects into our bodies energy, power and strength.” -Charles Stanley

Are you letting God inject you with His goodness? How will you spend time with Him today?

He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. -Isaiah 40:29

It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure. -Psalm 18:82

She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come. -Proverbs 31:25

Truth-Filled Hope

‘He will wipe away every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death.’ (Isaiah 25:8) And there will be no more sadness. There will be no more crying or pain. Things are no longer the way they used to be. He who was sitting on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down. You can trust these words. They are true.”
‭-Revelation‬ ‭21:4-5‬

At a time when my family is experiencing so much loss while also trying to navigate the uncertainty that lies ahead, I’m going to hold onto this gem-this hope from His Word. As Christians, we have this truth to look forward to. Though we experience many trials and tribulations here on this earth, He is making everything new. We can grasp tightly, this promise, from our Almighty God. And while it may not feel like it as we walk through the fire, rest assured that God’s got us and He is refining us. Day by day, He is renewing us, as He’s got everything under control.

So let us meditate on the hope He gives us in Revelation 21:4-5, knowing that He has it all in His hands, and that our real future is with Our Father. We can look forward to a new life without sickness, tears, heartache, or brokenness. In the meantime, while we wait for that day to come, let’s keep our eyes on Him, our Hope, and not lose heart.

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”
‭‭-2 Corinthians‬ ‭4:16-17‬ ‭‬‬

Hanging onto Letting Go

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” -Matthew 6:19-21

I’ve felt the tug on my heart to write a longer post for awhile now, yet I’ve been stuck. And since our lives have been massively turned upside down once again, I need a place to not only process what we are going through, but maybe help another while doing so.

Have you ever thought about what your life would be like without “stuff”? It’s pretty difficult to imagine not owning much of anything, until you are truly without it. Most people have an attachment of some kind to at least one thing they own. Can you picture losing nearly everything you have collected over the years to a fire? Or having to flee a war? So it has been, walking this journey with environmental illness. We have been fleeing our own war. And the casualties have been not only our health, but our belongings and home, for a second time.

Our family has been very sick, each member with varying symptoms, but our youngest has suffered the most, lately. After having taken her to just about every specialist known to mankind, visited the emergency room numerous times, had scans, X-rays, MRIs, blood tests and allergy tests done, we realized the environment we were living in was making us ill. We had to leave our home in Alaska in search of cleaner air and a healthier living environment. So, we are on the hunt. It may seem most ridiculous to the average person-chasing clean air, but for us and many others out there suffering from CIRS (Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome, aka Mold Biotoxin Illness) and environmental illness, it’s all too real. Not everyone can tolerate what our toxic planet has become.

And that brings me back to the loss. Because of where we resided and the treacherous weather on the way, the direness of our family’s health, along with other trials that ensued at the last minute, we had to walk away from everything we owned except a small carload. The loss didn’t really hit me until the last couple of days as we sat in our hotel room-days where I’ve tried to remind myself that when we die, we take nothing with us. For our treasures are stored up in heaven. And so that is how I’m trying to approach and deal with these losses, the second time around.

As I question where we will land, I can choose to stress and worry, or make the decision to trust that God will care for all of our needs. And as a brother in Christ reminded me in his blog, I can look at these fiery trials despairingly or as opportunities and lessons God is using to strengthen my faith by teaching us to rely on him more fully. This made me think of a line in Jeremy Camp’s song, “Out of My Hands”, that says “Knowing I can trust You is a treasure.” He is my treasure-not a house, not material possessions, not “stuff”. My treasure is not of this world, because I’m not of this world. The Lord is where my heart will be.

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. -Isaiah 43:2

**For those of you interested in learning more about Mold Biotoxin Illness/CIRS, I highly recommend the Moldy documentary suggested by our functional medicine doctor. It can be watched for free below. It will open your eyes to a whole new world of chronic illness and suffering. Some of you may finally begin to understand the real cause of your unexplained health issues.

https://moldymovie.com/

Hope Dancing in the Darkness

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. -James 1:17

Ever feel like you aren’t sure when you’ll see the light of day-those times when the trials come and don’t let up-when darkness surrounds and you wonder if it will ever end-and you need that reminder of Hope?

God reminded me in a big way, recently, that He is still here, no matter what I am going through. Just when I needed a little light, BOOM! He was at work lighting up the night sky, putting on a full dancing display before dawn-while I was still fast asleep. I had no idea what I was about to witness for the first time.

Jostled awake a few weeks ago, I arose to shouting voices and a panicked rush out the door. “It’s the Aurora Borealis. Hurry.” So, I stumbled to the mud room to pull on my snow boots, still not fully aware of what was going on, and I hobbled out the front door in the dark following my family. There it was. To my amazement, we finally saw it. Just when I needed it most, He blessed us with His magnificent light show. Just when I couldn’t see any further, because I was so caught up in my trials, His blessing was around the corner-but I didn’t know that. And, I had no idea He would shine His light so spectacularly a few days later.

Then two weeks ago, as I was dropping deeper into the slimy pit of depression and had just asked for prayer from both my husband and a friend, He did it again. My husband came running in from walking our dogs before bed and yelled that the Aurora Borealis was bobbing in the sky. These two sightings were indeed blessings, because in the year and a half that we have been in Alaska, we have waited anxiously to see the Northern Lights-something so breathtaking, that it’s written on many a bucket list. These were signs of hope from our Creator.

And He likely has blessings just around the corner for us all. So, when it’s difficult to see the light, let’s remember that He is our light-waiting to shower us with His blessings. Let us not forget that he makes each day anew. So when the days are long and we don’t know when that trial we are going through will end, we can anticipate His blessings-blessings of hope that he sprinkles all around us. Let us not forget to keep our eyes open to all He has for us, because we never know when He will surprise us and shine a light on our darkness!

The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. -Romans 13:12

“Arise, shine; for your light has come,
And the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. -Isaiah 60:1

Know

Last night, I was awake until the wee hours of the morning. It wasn’t until just after 4am that I finally fell asleep. So, tonight I was looking forward to a full night’s slumber. My daughter’s breathing took a turn for the worse, however, and she started having an asthma attack just before bed. With her oxygen level dropping, I knew it was going to be a long night of me monitoring her every fifteen minutes.

And a long night, I can handle. Heck, having handled many long nights, I’m a pro. But, with the continual challenges we’ve been pounded with over the last several years, I am truly exhausted. As I prepared our girls’ schoolwork for tomorrow, I got lost in thought about the state of this world, the suffering so many are experiencing right now, and the weariness I’m feeling lately. I began spacing out. When my eyes came to focus, it happened to be on a copywork/handwriting worksheet I had pulled from a folder. A few minutes earlier when I had grabbed it, I hadn’t even noticed the verse that was on it, but it definitely caught my eye this time: Be still and know that I am God. The Bible verse, Psalm 46:10, is a well-known one. God spoke to me in that moment and somehow it hit me differently this time. When He told me to know-that I can rest assuredly in Him, I felt it. It was like a breath of fresh air. I could breathe and know.

And so can you! We can be still and confident-unmoved when all about us the turbulence of life attempts to throw us around, because He said to be still and know that He Is God. He has it all under control, even when the world rages and life feels out of control. And, for those struggles that pile up and start weighing us down? Let’s not forget to hand over the weight of what we cannot control, to Him.

Faith…No Matter What

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. -Isaiah 41:10

How do you answer these questions from your own child? “Does God not care about me? Then why am I always sick?” Those were the questions our 11 year old asked me last night. And they were tough ones. Having dealt with my own chronic health issues since I was 13 years old, I ran from doctor to doctor for almost thirty years. With few answers, and left completely demoralized, I, too, have wondered this at times-days when I couldn’t bear the agony any longer.

Those many, many days when I felt as though I was on my deathbed, truly wondering if I would see another week, I wrestled with God about being chronically ill. “Why, God?” “Why?” And while I still have my good days and bad days, with my baseline far from perfect, God gives me the strength I need each day to get through. This isn’t just about me though.

To see my own child suffering through something very similar, is heartbreaking. Multiple mysterious symptoms. Several doctors. Numerous specialists. No concrete answers. And then, the questions that I can’t answer. “Mommy, when will I feel better?”

I wonder, how do I fill others with hope when I don’t see an end to their situation-especially my own child’s? This is where faith comes in. It is believing, even when we cannot see. It is grabbing onto Him and trusting, no matter what. When my daughter asked me if God cared about her, I had to remind her that of course He did, and that God is good no matter what.

The questions she asked did rattle me a bit however, I have to be honest, because I saw her in me. I don’t want what I’ve gone through for my daughter, yet these past few years, she’s been living it. Our family has been through a lot, and yet we persevere with God by our sides. So, if she takes away anything from me, I hope she sees that in my weakness, that I’m learning to depend on Him wholeheartedly, and that God is her hope and strength. And while I will do whatever I can to get her better, through it all, God is still good, because He is. We can’t let our faith be shaken in these instances. God is still who He says He is, even in times of testing, and I’m thankful for this.

“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” -2 Corinthians 4:17-18

“I will trust Him. Whatever, wherever I am, I can never be thrown away. If I am in sickness, my sickness may serve Him; in perplexity, my perplexity may serve Him; if I am in sorrow, my sorrow may serve Him. My sickness, or perplexity, or sorrow may be necessary causes of some great end, which is quite beyond us. He does nothing in vain.” -John Henry Newman

**I would love to hear how you would answer the questions above if you were asked. Leave a comment below! And for anyone willing to lift our daughter up in prayer-prayer for good health and full healing, I would be extremely grateful.