In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will… Ephesians 1:11 NIV


It was a dream come true.  She stepped through the doors in silence, taking in every detail.  Her head slowly turned and tilted towards mine.  I smiled at her sparkling eyes and nudged her little five-year-old body forward, “Wow! Isn’t it wonderful?”  My mother, who once stood beside me, was already drawn to a case.  She peered inside looking at the exquisite outfits and details of the dolls within.  She turned back to look at Faith, and I had to chuckle at the excitement on her face, as well.


For Faith’s fifth birthday, my mother was treating her granddaughter to pick out any doll in this fabulous doll universe of a store.  Faith and I walked through every inch soaking in the detail of each doll and her accessories.  My mother wandered off pouring through the displays of the historical collections.  After a thorough investigation of the entire store, Faith looked up at me with hesitation and meekly asked, “Could I get one?”


I laughed thinking she understood the reason for our trip, but she was too overwhelmed to believe it even possible.  “Which one do you want?” I asked knowing what a hard choice she had ahead of her.  “Oh, I want one just like me,” she said walking briskly to the section of the store with Just Like Me dolls.  We studied each one searching for similarities between it and Faith. 


Finally, she found it – a doll just like her.  We couldn’t get to the check out fast enough.  “As soon as we get home, can we take her out of the box?” Faith wanted to know as we waited in line.  “Honey, we can go out in the mall and take her out now,” I told her.  She grinned in anticipation of the chosen doll resting in her arms. 


As we walked around the mall later that day, I looked back at Faith to see her hugging her doll and rubbing her cheek against her new friend. 


God feels the same way about us.  We were chosen.  And we were selected from the Just Like Me section, also. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him…(Genesis 1:27 NIV) 


He took His time and specifically picked out every detail of your personality and your looks.  There is no one just like you.  Christ created you to be a one and only original.  One of a kind creations are worth so much more.


When you’re feeling down, remember YOU were chosen. God selected every detail that makes you who you are.  And He cherishes you just as you are.  Imagine Christ picking you up and wrapping His loving arms around you because He is so happy with His selection.


You were chosen by God.



Headed to Macedonia

Two lines.  It couldn’t be.  But there it was – two lines.  I set the plastic indicator on the counter, and the sound echoed making me jump.  My heart stopped momentarily, and I inhaled searching desperately for air.  My mind raced with numbers – days, dates, times circled in my brain looking for a place to land. 


Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle and set apart for the gospel of God (Romans 1:1 NIV) followed Christ whole-heartedly.  He was jailed, flogged, and shipwrecked; yet still he chose to follow.  God called him to preach the gospel, and he took that job seriously.  Paul traveled on many missionary journeys, yet none intrigue me as much as the journey to the province of Asia.


The Bible tells us that when Paul tried going into Bithynia, God wouldn’t allow it.


When they came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them to. Acts 16:7 NIV


I have to wonder why? God called Paul to preach.  Wouldn’t He want Paul to preach any and everywhere?  Paul wasn’t sinning or on a fast road to destruction.  Still, God chose his servant’s path for him.  We aren’t given much insight into Paul’s thoughts.  We just know that the next night he had a vision of a man in Macedonia standing and begging him, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.”  After the vision, Paul and his companions got ready at once to leave for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them. (v. 10) 


God called me to write.  He has confirmed it on many occasions.  He alone has opened doors in that area that have blessed me immensely.  My youngest child will be in kindergarten next year.  I have commented often about how amazing it is that God would lead me to this place right as my youngest is going to be gone all day.  How timely to have all day to devote to writing. (Have I mentioned I have two books I’m working on?)  I am following Him with my whole heart.


Yet, there I stood looking at the two lines, wondering how the plans got changed.  My dearest friends, I am pregnant.  The Lord willing, I will deliver mid-September, right after my youngest hops on the big yellow bus to kindergarten.  I know I’ll be blessed with a new life in our home; a baby is always a blessing.  But I have to admit to you, I’ve struggled with the change of plans. 


“But Lord,” I cried, “I was following what you called me to do.  How can you take that away from me now?”  And He said, “I’m not.” 


“I don’t understand how all this can happen with a baby on the way,” I pleaded.


But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV


Yesterday, I submitted.  I gave it to Him – the writing, the baby, my plans – I gave it all.  And I felt His pleasure.  In that familiar voice, I heard Him say, “Trust me, Carol.  I am not asking you to give up your writing.  I called you to that.  I’m asking you to give up control.”


So friends, I humbly ask for your prayers as I pack my bags and travel with my Lord and Savior to Macedonia.  I have concluded that He wants me to write the gospel from there.




“Why isn’t Uncle Jason married?” Colin asked me with great seriousness.  “Well, buddy, he just hasn’t found the right woman. I’m sure he’s looking for her, though.”

Colin paused, and I could see the wheels turning.  “Well, why doesn’t he just pray to God to send her to him so he doesn’t have to keep looking all over the place.”  I chuckled a little, “Well, I’m sure Uncle Jason would like that, too. You’ll have to suggest it to him.”
Finding the right mate is serious business.  Keeping the right mate is even harder.  You may have noticed by now a common theme for the week – marriage.  Since it’s Valentine’s Day this weekend, I thought it appropriate to talk about ways to keep the love alive.  
Here is what the Bible says about love.  Take some time today and reflect on how your relationship reflects this kind of love.  

 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. 1 Cor. 13:4-8 NIV

Love you,


Happily Ever After

I felt his presence before I felt his hand on my back.  I turned and looked up into the brown eyes of the one to whom I had just pledged my life.  My dress swished as I turned.  Around us four hundred guests bubbled with details. “Did you see the dress up close?”  “After six years, they finally tied the knot.”  “I hear they are leaving in a horse drawn carriage…

Join me today at the Internet Cafe.  Click HERE to read my post. 


I Do

It should have been one of the happiest times of our lives.  But somehow I found myself, arms crossed, registry scanner in hand, pouting in the home goods section of Target…

Join me at Faith Lifts to read the rest of my devotion.  Click HERE.