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Encountering God

When I was nine years old, I gave my heart to the Lord. I walked to the front of the church, told the pastor that I had accepted Jesus into my heart, went through some Bible classes on what becoming a Christian meant.  That was my very first God encounter.  It was simple and uncomplicated. In my heart, even at such a young age, even if I did not fully understand the magnitude of my own sins, I knew I needed a Savior. That Sunday began my journey with Christ. I was recently asked to share on God Encounters in my life.  I sat down to write some notes. I began to reflect on the first time I remembered encountering God and the timeline of miracles – both big and small – that was evidenced in my life over the last 30 years.  Beyond my salvation experience (which was a m...

God of the Deep

In the first year of my firstborn’s life, I remember sitting in the rocking chair late at night, scrolling my phone while I fed him. I remember headlines of awful happenings in the Middle East. I specifically remember reading a post about ISIS beheading Christians who would not renounce Christ. I can still see that picture in my mind, a lineup of men with their heads and faces covered, their executioners standing behind them. I doubt I will ever forget it. I remember feeling crippled by anxiety and fear for the world my child would grow up in. That very possibly, in my lifetime, we would see such atrocities committed against Christians, but this time, perhaps, on the continent on which we live. I would sing and pray over that child, asking that God would spare him from persecution, that so...

Who Are You, Really?

         Who are you? On the surface, it seems like a simple enough question, doesn’t it? But think about it for just a moment. Who are you? What are the first things that enter your mind in response to that question? When meeting a new friend or colleague, we tend to spout off a list of roles and titles we answer to.  I am a mom, wife, sister, aunt, or friend. In some instances, we answer with a job title. I am a teacher, hairdresser, administrative assistant, or business owner. Sometimes we begin by discussing a current or future project, such as I’m writing a book, joining the church choir, or launching a single mom’s ministry in my community.             When most of us are asked who we are, ...

October Scripture Writing Guide (2021)

Scripture writing plans are incredibly simple, yet incredibly effective for helping us read, interpret and absorb the Word of God. Rather than simply letting our eyes pass over a verse and perhaps miss its full meaning, writing Scripture down helps us absorb each word and really think through what the passage before us is saying. Each day in October you’ll have the opportunity to write down a verse. We suggest using a journal where you can add any additional mediations or prayers that the verse brings to mind. Click here to download the October Scripture Writing Guide! Join Our Telegram Group : Salvation & Prosperity  

SEEDS

These days I feel as if I’m planting seeds waiting to see when they will blossom. Other days I’ve reaped the bounty from the seeds I’ve planted, especially as I look at my children. I’ve also seen it in smaller interactions. The thing is when you plant seeds, they’re so small you sometimes forget that you’ve planted them. And then you see a lonely neighbor who always pauses to speak with you because she enjoys your company. You’ve sown into her. Or you receive an email that magnifies your contributions to the team, although, to you, there were minuscule. Again you’re using what God gave you to honor Him. SEEDS. Seeds are the foundation for growth. Seeds are so tiny, minuscule, yet if there are taken care of, they yield an unexpected harvest. ...

A Choice that Changed Me

2020 changed me. Most of us can say the same. Our world became an unfamiliar place that few imaginations could have even conjured. But a decision I made on January 1st, 2020, before any of these unprecedented events were a reality, changed me the most. That New Year’s Day I read Genesis 1:1,  “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”  And every day of 2020 I continued reading, until on December 31st, 1,034 pages later, I concluded with Revelation 22:20-21,  “He who testifies to these things says,  ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’  Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.  The grace of the Lord Jesus  be with God’s people.  Amen.” In God’s sovereignty, the Spirit moved me to commit to reading through the entire Bible in a year, while at the same time, this un-...

How to Live a Fruitful Life in Our Day

(Image Credit: Canva) www.courtnayerichard.com In these turbulent times, it’s time for the body of Christ to shine brighter in our homes, jobs, communities, churches, and online circles like never before! The world is getting darker and darker, and the Bible forewarned us that in the last days, there would be difficult times. We’re seeing it. Would you agree? I see it. So, as Christians, in order to shine even brighter in this dark and difficult world, we’re going to need to live fruitful lives in our day. So how do we accomplish this in our daily lives and in this critical hour? The simple answer – action. Yep! Jesus tells us in Matthew 7:20, “Yes, just as you can identify a tree by its fruit, so you identify people by their actions.” In Jesus’ own words, He tells us through John 15:8, “W...

Ministry Leaders Worn Out and Weary

Ministry Leaders Worn Out and Weary         I bumped into a friend a few weeks ago, and she asked how I was doing. My response was, “I’m tired.” We chatted for a while, and I began to think and pondered over how many times I had responded with that same answer over the previous months. How many times have I thought about my exhaustion over the years?  Often, I jokingly say that I haven’t slept in twenty years and hadn’t truly rested since I had kids. Although it is a joke, there is some truth to the weariness we can fall under as ministry leaders.        Ministry is different from anything else you will ever do. You cannot compare it to working a 9:00 to 5:00 job. Many of you still do that in addition to leading your ministry, bathing ...

Choosing Forgivness

But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your sins, too. Mark 11:25 NLT Hard and fast I held a grudgeBuried long and deep Other’s actions I would judgeAll my rights to keep Each wrong plainly recordedBuilt a mighty wall Behind which pain I hoardedShrouded in death’s pall Darkness loomed for many yearsMy wall blocked all light I might have drowned from my tearsDespair held me tight In this wall one day I foundA fair open door Forgive was etched all aroundFrom top jamb to floor At this door I lingered longPondering my choice Through it came a lovely songMade my heart rejoice I chose right then to walk throughLeave my grudge behind God refreshed my soul anewSweet peace I did find If my wall, my record stan...

Shells of Wonder

Last month my family embarked on a 5-week, 8,000-mile road trip around the United States. Through flaming deserts, sticky swamplands, verdant valleys and hills, and endless miles of corn (so much corn) we drove. A newfound sense of awe and wonder for the beauty, diversity, and vastness of our country was sparked. However, no sight or city captivated my imagination quite like the seashells. Coming from Oregon, where a summer day at the beach involves jackets and blankets and a stalwart resolve to enjoy the frigid water pouring over my toes, the blazing sun and unflinchingly warm water of Gulf Shores, Alabama, was wonderful enough. But in addition to these marvels, this stretch of beach is home to miles of intact colorful shells. For two days I combed through the swath near our house, and a ...

10 Things We Need to Know About Complaining

Ten Things We Need to Know About Complaining        One of my dearest friends and I have known each other for more than twenty years. Years ago, we both lived in the same apartment complex and often shared meals to save money.  We had very little to call our own. As young single moms, we had furnished our government-issued apartments with previously-owned, heavily-used furniture, bedding, and dishes. Often, we were the thankful recipients of other’s throwaways. We stretched every dollar farther than imaginable. We worked long hours and often had more debt than dollars. We clipped coupons, worked multiple jobs, held garage sales, etc. – whatever was necessary to ensure we provided for our young families. There is something about my friend that st...

Free Printable: Gutsy and Gentle a Prayer for Women

Who likes free gifts and prayers worth praying for the next generation of women? For yourself? Our wonderful contributor, Sarah Dohman, is creating a free printable for our readers once a month for all of 2017. You don’t want to miss the opportunity to put this beautiful artwork on your walls. Make sure to follow us, so that you won’t miss one. You can also find us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. January’s Anchored Printables are prayers written for the woman who longs to be both gutsy and gentle. We live in a culture that can range from asking us to be silent to asking us to be nasty, but God calls us to more. We can live filled with a passion to stand against injustice and still be kind. We can live gently and still be gutsy.  This prayer was written by...