Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Primary and secondary

Your first thought in the morning.

The kingdom of heaven.

The righteousness of Christ.

The Word of God.

Your soul's salvation.

The salvation of others.

The service of God.

What do these have in common?

Everything else is to be of secondary importance to them.

Worldly labor, self-interest, other books... everything.

*References: CG, page 519. CSW, page 53. RH, November 18, 1884. ST, May 1, 1884. CCh, page 41. 3MR No. 168.

Sunday, November 20, 2011


You may be aware that I love to collect real-life quotes. I love to record things people say that have the ability to make me laugh more than just the first time I heard them said; and things that are so profound that time seems to stop for a moment once they're spoken. Below is a compilation of my favorites from this second category. I hope you will be blessed as much as I was...

"The unfaithfulness of man limits the goodness of God." -Tammey Steenson

"The parable of the glove. Faith is like a glove. It won't work unless you put it on." - Don Mackintosh

"Your job is to get your best friend to heaven." - Rich Kollenberg

"Why is it that when God is leading, we become afraid?" - Ted Wilson

" 'Normal' is described in the book of Acts." - Don Mackintosh

"Don't ask, 'Why did this happen?' but 'How can I draw closer to You?" - Wes Peppers

"Constant giving will starve selfishness." - Eric Flickinger

"You don't find happiness by looking for it. You find happiness by being the right kind of person." - Alan Parker

"Nothing is really ours until we let it go." - Janet Evert

"Jesus doesn't need men and women who merely esteem Him as great, but believers who are willing to be made great by His life." - Eric Ludy*

"The reason God can call obedience a condition for eternal life is because it's His power and not mine." - Jim Brackett

"As long as I stay yielded, burdens lifted, light given, and a character transformed are tangible realities!" - Melissa McLeod

"You don't pray all night so you can get something out of God, but so God can get something out of you." - Alan Parker

*Actually a quote from a book, not spoken.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Absolute willingness

This morning, I read Daniel 3: an amazing story of three young men who stood firm for what they believed in. 

There was no hesitancy on their part, in the decision to honor the one true God. 

They said in verse 16, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter.” It wasn’t of question to them!

The part that really stuck out to me, though, was three points brought out in a verse I hadn’t noticed before. 

“Then Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in Him, and have changed the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God.” 

They were willing to trust God with everything, even this issue. They were willing to even go against the command of an earthly king in order to keep God from being dishonored. And they were willing to give up their very bodies to be burned, all for this cause: 

The honor of God above absolutely anything else.

Those who would rather die than perform a wrong act are the only ones who will be found faithful.*

May we each have this same courage, decision, and integrity today.

*MYP 74

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Be still, my soul.

Why fear? Why worry? He created the worlds; He is more than able to create a new heart in me.

Be still, my soul; the Lord is on thy side;
Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain;
Leave to thy God to order and provide;
In every change He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul; thy best, thy heavenly, Friend
Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.

Be still, my soul; thy God doth undertake
To guide the future as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence, let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul; the waves and winds still know
His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below.

Be still, my soul, though dearest friends depart
And all is darkened in the vale of tears;
Then shalt thou better know His love, His heart,
Who comes to soothe thy sorrows and thy fears.
Be still, my soul; thy Jesus can repay
From His own fulness all He takes away.

Be still, my soul; the hour is hastening on
When we shall be forever with the Lord,
When disappointment, grief, and fear are gone,
Sorrow forgot, love's purest joys restored.
Be still, my soul; when change and tears are past,
All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Safeway musings

It feels odd not to be at work this morning, but here I sit. I'm at a little round table in the coffee shop/bakery section of Safeway, enjoying the array of colors and smells, and watching customers walk by. My car is at the doctor, getting fixed, and I get to wait for awhile. I've already wandered up Main Street, and after I write this I may head back to some of the stores that are probably open now.

With this extra time, I find myself with a release to take the morning a little slower than I probably would have otherwise. I've got time to enjoy the little things...

Time to notice how small Colville really is.

Time to notice the great design inspiration a grocery market offers.

Time to observe people at work.

Time to organize my internet bookmarks.

Time to listen to the words of songs.

Time to enjoy color.

Time to, well, write a blog....

And I've even got time to think.

It's a luxury these days to find more than just a snippet of quality time where I can sit outside or on the couch and do nothing but think. It's great to be busy, but I've realized the need for time to simply think about the immense and marvelous topics of life, and of the amazing character and salvation of Christ. If I don't take time to train my mind in this direction, my thoughts wander off to other things... and I'd much rather learn to discipline it the right way.

So yeah. I've enjoyed the last hour and a half of time.

I'm now off to explore the town more...

Friday, June 3, 2011

Of children and orphans

Somehow, this morning my mind ended up thinking about children. Maybe it's the fact that our community kids' program is tomorrow afternoon. Or, it could be that I dreamed I had a baby last night (he was so cute!). Maybe that was it. Anyway, whatever the case, I couldn't stop thinking about it, but in a different way than I usually do...

I want to help the orphans. For some reason, the thought of me bringing another child into the world while there are so many out there in need is disturbing to me. I don't mean any offense to those who already have kids or plan to, since I myself am product of it! ;-) But somehow... God has spoken to my heart.

“If those who have no children and whom God has made stewards of means would expand their hearts to care for children who need love, care, and affection, and assistance with this world's goods, they would be far happier than they are today.”

“There is a wide field of usefulness before all who will work for the Master in caring for these children and youth who have been deprived of the watchful guidance of parents and the subduing influence of a Christian home. Many of them have inherited evil traits of character; and if left to grow up in ignorance, they will drift into associations that lead to vice and crime. These unpromising children need to be placed in a position favorable for the formation of a right character, that they may become children of God.

“The Lord said to Peter: ‘Feed My lambs.’ This command is to us, and by opening our homes for the orphans we aid in its fulfillment. Let not Jesus be disappointed in you.

“The work of saving the homeless and the fatherless is everyone's business.

That includes me. And you. What will we do about it?

(all quotes from Adventist Home, pages 167-170)

Tuesday, May 31, 2011


If you look at the last date I posted, you'll notice that it's been two months since I last wrote. Other than busy-ness, there's not really a whole lot of reason for that.

Except that I've been distracted.

A few days ago, I came here and wondered where the time had gone. After all, so much has happened between now and then! And then I realized what happened... A few weeks after I wrote, I re-joined the world of facebook, thus sending me into a new sphere of activity. It was fun for awhile, and actually still is! But I've decided that there are better things in life. For example...

- Time with friends is so much more valuable when you find out information from them first-hand.
- There really are other things on the internet besides facebook. Places where I can actually learn something.
- I get a lot more done. Even though I don't have internet at home, I get status updates on my phone and can connect with the cyber world that way.
- Instead of checking my phone first thing in the morning, I can take time with my Creator.
- Happy-birthday wishes? In my opinion, they're much more special when your friends actually remember your day and shoot you an e-mail, instead of being informed by an automatically generated calendar.
- It's so freeing to be away from it....... those of you who have done the same thing as me know what I mean. :-)

I wrote those off the top of my head, but if I stopped to think more, I could come up with several reasons.

In short, it was a distraction.

I'm glad to be undistracted by it now! I plan to use the time to spend with my heavenly Prince, and grow closer to Him and His ideal for me. And... while I'm off facebook, I think you'll probably hear more from me, here. ;-)

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


I was immature when I was 17. Believe me. Just this evening, I was sorting through a few old things in my personal files here at work, and I came across a chat I had with a guy I liked back then. Oh my! It makes me cringe just reading it. Surely I must have been crazy! So flippant, flirtatious, mindless...

I am so amazed at the way God works with me. He has brought me so far, and yet there is so much still wrong with me. I'm glad there is so much RIGHT with Him!

It reminds me of a quote I read this morning that was a big encouragement to me:

"If you delight to dwell upon the plan of salvation, upon the glorious manifestations of the divine character, if your heart, in contemplation of the love of God, glows with thankfulness and joy, you may be sure that you have been illuminated by the beams of the Holy Spirit, and heavenly agencies are bringing your character up to maturity of Christian life" (Signs of the Times, March 27, 1893).

I think this speaks for itself. I am so thankful that God gives such promises as these!

I plan to keep growing, through His infinite grace. How about you?

Monday, March 28, 2011

A Shift of Perspective

When all around my soul gives way, He then is all my hope and stay.

Today was a busy one - and still is! I have yet to go home and finish as many responsibilities as I can before bedtime. Is it just me, or does everything big happen all at once? Everything I have to plan for, all the trips I have to make, all the neighborhood drama . . . it all seems to plop into my lap at one time. But then again, maybe I'm looking at it from the wrong perspective. Shift that, and I can see just how powerful God is, in helping me through it all, and giving me strength to meet the demands of life.

Just before lunch, I took some time out at "my" cabin, my favorite spot in the whole of YD camp. Its tiny porch overlooks the lake, and since it's not inhabited by campers this time of year, it's a perfect place to spend a few minutes with God before I go back to eat. As I stood there and told God all about what was happening and causing me stress, a quote came to mind, one that encourages me every time I think of it:

"Worry is blind, and cannot discern the future. Jesus sees the end from the beginning. In every difficulty, He has a way prepared to bring relief. Our heavenly Father has a thousand ways to provide for us, of which we know nothing. Those who accept the one principle of making the service and honor of God supreme will find perplexities vanish and a plain path before their feet" (The Desire of Ages, page 330).

Amazing isn't it? That one simple principle opens up this path of life like nothing else. As we truly serve and honor God in everything, He will take care of the rest. Our God has knowledge that goes above and beyond our highest expectations. He is so powerful. He is so big. And yet He takes pleasure in helping me in my majorly-tiny-compared-to-His trials. He is truly my hope and stay!

Friday, March 18, 2011


My new favorite song. Apparently it's everyone else's, too... but oh well. The words are worthy of repeat, and good to think about.

Blessings by Laura Story

We pray for blessings
We pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
All the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love us way too much to give us lesser things

‘Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

We pray for wisdom
Your voice to hear
And we cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt Your goodness, we doubt Your love
As if every promise from Your Word is not enough
All the while, You hear each desperate plea
But long that we'd have the faith to believe

‘Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
And what if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

When friends betray us
When darkness seems to win
We know the pain reminds this heart
That this is not, this is not our home,

‘Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
And what if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
What if my greatest disappointments
Or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy
And what if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are your mercies in disguise

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Morning Manna

Just thought I'd tell you about one of my little personal ministries, inside of my work at YD. It's an e-mail sharing group where young people (and some older ones too!) give tidbits of what they've learned in their devotional time. It's really encouraging to see what everyone has shared! If you'd like more information, e-mail me at I'll be happy to tell you more! :-)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

New Beginnings

Have you felt the call? Recently, I have. Christ has gently pressed on my heart the burden of working totally, completely, and unreservedly for Him. It is a call I can't avoid. It's a long process, but He is softening my heart to His influence. I want to serve Him with my life! I pray that you will make this same decision.