Fisher of Men

God’s Light Shines Through the Darkest Storms

2020 and 2021 have been challenging years for the world. We’ve all had to endure loss after loss. I have, too. As a country music artist, my business revolves around people, and none of us had a backup plan for music gatherings coming to an abrupt stop back in March 2020. Artists were forced to cancel an entire year of shows in one day, something we’d never dreamed of. I found myself at rock bottom with no plan and no direction.  I also had a wedding coming up in six short months. My fiancé and I had already paid non-refundable deposits for our big day, but it became obvious pretty quickly that our wedding day was not going to look the way we’d planned it—not even close. But nothing compared to the biggest blow of all: losing our best friend Greg to COVID-19. Change of Plans Fast forw...

Pursuing Excellence for God, Jumpstarts Your Life

Through one of the hottest environments on the planet, the Queen of Sheba completed the final leg of a long expedition by slowly crawling up Mt. Zion. She had heard of the wisdom of Solomon and the fame of his country, but she was soon to discover she hadn’t heard the half of it (1 Kings 10:7). Foreign dignitaries in the ancient world came from far and wide to pick the brain of the wisest man on earth. The kingdom Solomon built, the culture he created: that doesn’t just happen! God fulfilled Solomon’s request for wisdom (1 Kings 3) and afterward, Solmon actively pursued excellence. Later, Paul would write in Colossians 3:23 that, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters” (NIV).  My Story My personal journey from childhood to youn...

To Hold Your Head High, Bow It in Prayer

Standing in the confined space between hefty metal doors, we waited to be buzzed through to enter the cinder-block prison gymnasium. Soon the room would fill to capacity with more than 300 inmates in blue jumpsuits, ready to gather for church. I was filled with a mixture of nervous jitters and excitement, anticipating the work God would do in the lives of the women in front of me.  I’d been thinking about these women for days leading up to my visit. I imagined their shoulders slumped under the heaviness of separation from family. I thought their eyes would be downcast from the strain of loneliness and isolation, the burden of broken relationships, the heavy feelings of defeat.  A piercing sound signaled our entrance into the room. As the women filed in, we noticed they were radia...

After Scars, Finding New Growth in Relationships

“The soul-satisfaction you find in Mehelps you relate well to other people.”– Jesus Always, July 25 The daily news is full of hopeful images showing us that community gatherings are back. We’ve been through a long season of isolation, and now doors are opening again. What will we choose from as we survey the banquet of opportunities laid before us? Will we finally be able to resume life as we knew it? We rejoice as we are allowed to join in worship, hug our loved ones, and enjoy a meal with friends. It is indeed good to do life together. But before we settle for a return to our former ways, let’s consider that this new entry into community may be a call to go further toward real restoration, rather than simple resumption, of relationships. The irony is, while the news highlights the sorrow...

Praying for Our Teens

“If my teens are doing something wrong, Lord, please let them get caught.” Believe it or not, when I began writing Praying the Scriptures for Your Teens, almost every mom or dad I interviewed said the “let my kids get caught” prayer—a parent’s version of Numbers 32:23—was at or near the top of their list. I like that prayer (and my kids will tell you that I prayed it myself, plenty of times), but I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that it feels a bit risky. As one mom told me, “I hate to pray that my kids’ sin will be exposed, because that’s a prayer that God always seems to answer.” I know just what she means. God does reveal stuff—and once I get past the initial disappointment or anger over whatever it is, I can find myself battling worry and fear. Was this a one-time whoopsie? Or is it a de...

Spending Time with God Heals Us

Allow the Light of My healing Presence to shine in the deepest recesses of your being—cleansing, healing, refreshing, and renewing you.  Jesus Calling, March 17 Throughout my life, my prayers have looked different depending on where I am in my spiritual walk. Today, as a grandmother of six, my prayers are quiet, ongoing conversations with God. But in my thirties, they were loud and desperate, the only lifeline I had when memories of childhood abuse began to resurface.  As the memories flooded back during this dark period, I experienced a rollercoaster of emotions. Yet throughout my tumultuous journey, God was a constant presence in my life. His still, small voice continued to guide me.  Then, to my surprise, I discovered a gift that allowed me to channel the strong emotions ...

Make Something with the Pieces You’ve Been Given

When you reframe setbacks as opportunities, you find that you gain much more than you have lost.   Jesus Calling, November 4 Here’s the truth about life: a whole lot of our best plans don’t work out, and many things we counted on . . . fall apart. Many times, there’s not much we can do about it. But you know what? There’s a lot we can do with the pieces left over from the moments when life doesn’t go the way we planned. One time, my son and I took an incomplete LEGO set, and by the time we were done, we created something more meaningful and beautiful than we could’ve imagined when we started.  The missing pieces Of the seventy-five pieces that made up the LEGO City Desert Rally Racer our box only came with seventy-three. At first, we thought it was our fault. In the time it ...

Mending a Broken Relationship: It’s Possible

I am a God who heals. I heal broken bodies, broken minds, broken hearts, broken lives, and broken relationships. My very Presence has immense healing powers.        Jesus Calling, August 20 “With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible.”    Mark 10:27, NKJV When Jesus said that all things are possible with God, did He include fixing those broken, somewhat cracked, even estranged relationships we sometimes experience? When we suffer the sadness of a broken relationship, we may grieve it for years. We may even wonder if it is really possible to mend it, or if we should just cut our losses and move on. With God, all things are still possible! One reason we can say with confidence that all things are possible wit...

Capital M-Miracles

“As the Spirit’s Love shines through you, My healing Presence goes to work in the other person.” Jesus Always I was up late at night, writing a letter to my son that would be read at his funeral the next day. Our son was born a few weeks earlier with what we learned was a rare and fatal disorder. I had started the letter with a lament, the same familiar one I had been repeating over and over to myself after I was released from the hospital. We longed for you to live, my son. We asked, but we didn’t see our miracle. The ones with the capital M’s, the ones people write about and make movies out of. Then, this next sentence came falling out onto the page. Here’s the thing, though, sweet boy. We did see other things. It surprised me. I kept writing. We did see other things We saw nurses who to...

Experience Jesus Like Never Before

I designed you to commune with Me face to Face, and this interaction strengthens your soul. Such communion provides a tiny glimpse of what awaits you in heaven, where all barriers between you and My Glory will be removed. Jesus Calling, August 28 Imagine Jesus standing before you with a golden envelope. It contains an invitation to know and experience Him in ways like never before. If you tear open the contents, you’ll discover Christ anew in His breathtaking beauty, staggering strength, wondrous power, and the depths of His neverending love for you. Would you take the envelope? Or would you say, “Eh, nah. I don’t like the packaging. That’s not for me.” Revelation – The holy exclamation point For far too many years of my life, that’s how I’ve thought of Revelation. Maybe you or those you l...

Healthy Living from the Inside Out

When you try to live independently of Me, you experience emptiness and dissatisfaction. You may gain the whole world and yet lose everything that really counts.   Jesus Calling, September 16 Have you ever wondered why it is so hard to make healthy living a habit? Armed with our greatest determination and countless diets and training plans, it should be easy, but many of us find that it is not. Somewhere between setting our goals and facing reality, we trade healthy habits for quick-fix gimmicks and temporary results. Healthy living is more than a look Like finances, marriage, and other subjects studied through the Word in our churches, a healthy approach to life can be attained when our focus is on God. We cannot get healthy, remain balanced, and maintain the results on our stren...

The Life-Changing Power of Speaking a Blessing

I am speaking to you continually: words of Life . . . Peace . . . Love. Tune your heart to receive these messages of abundant blessing. Jesus Calling, September 21 Other than praying, what should we do when someone we love isn’t living up to their potential? We can bless them. God blessed Adam and Eve and then released them to be fruitful, multiply, and rule. For most of my life, I believed the opposite. I assumed that if I performed well, then I would be blessed. But Genesis 1:28 radically upends the order of events. With God, the blessing is not the reward for productivity—it’s the power for it. Blessing is a positive, faith-filled vision spoken in accord with God’s Word over someone’s life. It’s stronger than encouragement and altogether different than prayer. Though often unfamiliar to...