A True Fan

Have you ever been to a football game and sat on the side of the opposing team? Fans are not always nice when they realize you aren’t on the same side as them. Finding yourself in the middle of the masses can be frightening…

I’m posting with the Presidential Prayer Team today. Click HERE to read the rest of my devotion.

*Remember this link is only direct today, October 22. After today you will need to select Oct. 22 from the drop down menu to read this devotion.

Carol

5 Ways to Keep the Home Fires Burning

Sometimes marriage can become as stale as the box of Cheerios your ten-year-old left open on the pantry shelf. What once burned hot and bright may now be a cold, black dirty log in your fireplace.

Do you drool over those married couples that look as if they share a secret no one else knows? The secret is they know how to be intentional in their marriage. A good marriage takes work. A great marriage is like wallpapering your two-story den – it seems impossible. But, alas, it is not..

Join me at 5 Minutes for Faith for 5 easy tips to heat things up in your marriage. Click HERE.

Carol

The Ripple Effect

 “Remember there’s no such thing as a small act of kindness. Every act creates a ripple with no logical end.” ~Scott Adams

Throw a stone in the water, and it moves the water in a ripple much further than the original stone could have ever hoped to reach.

It’s a scientific principal learned by even the smallest of children. Don’t believe me? Come to my house during bath time and watch my toddler try it out. Tiny hands will plunge into the bath to create waves that splash over the edges far beyond the length of her body.

The ripple effect can work in water, in people, in ideas, in business… You get the idea. Unfortunately, this scientific phenomena isn’t always positive.

Negative Ripple
Let’s look at an actual scientific experiment that has taken place in my house I read about somewhere.

One abandoned Lego in the den floor under the foot of one overtired and overbooked mama leads that mama to jump and shout out in pain. When she discovers the devil of a Lego stuck to the underside of her foot, she will holler (southern scientific term for shouting in a tone that produces kids to move quickly) for the child who left it.

Frustrated with the disorder that caused her pain, overtired mother will look around and notice all the disarray in her home and holler (southern scientific again) for the other children to come and clean.

The father enters the home just in time for the hollering and jumping and takes it upon himself to step in and take over with the children to ease the pain and frustration of hollering mama. Hollering mama is ATPONR (At The Point Of No Return) and snaps at unsuspecting father.

The now irritated father bellows at the children to come to the dinner table. They come sniffling over hurt feelings and harsh tones. ATPONR mother and irritated father sit down to dinner where they all eat in silence.

See? It’s scientific. Unfortunately, this describes my house more than I want to admit. I can blame the Lego, but I know that the true ripple creator is me.

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. Ephesians 4:29 NIV

Positive Ripple
Ever so often I have showers of blessings from a positive ripple. I had one last week while visiting the prison. I was greeting the men and preparing to teach them about the creative aspect of writing a sermon, and one man approached and handed me a yellow piece of paper.

“I wanted to give this to you,” he told me. “You inspired me to write it.” He had my immediate attention. Almost a year ago I stood in the gymnasium classroom of the state prison and taught these men how writing can be a ministry. He explained how after that class, he decided to write small devotions for the other prisoners. He added some graphics and printed them as small posters to place on the bulletin boards around the campus. He changes them out every week or so.

“The men are standing around by those bulletin boards a lot. I figured I’d give them something good to read. But you are the one who really inspired me to do it.” I listened to his words and stood speechless. Some of the hardest criminals would hear Truth because I inspired this man to write it.

But it didn’t start with me. It started with God. I spent time in His Word, which led me to Matthew 25.

“I was in prison and you came to visit me.” Matthew 25:36 NIV

Matthew 25 led me to write Sheep to the Right the book, which led me to the prison. (How can you write about visiting prison if you’ve never set foot in one?) Visiting prison led me to share with the men, which made their seminary professor ask me to come back and actually teach. Teaching led me to share how writing can be a ministry. And sharing that inspired this man to create devotional posters for the other prisoners.

It was a ripple effect.

You see, daily we are confronted with people, things and situations that can cause either a positive or negative ripple effect. We have to choose which way to send the ripples.

Don’t think God could use you to do something magnificent? Wrong again. God can do anything. If He can use a hollering, jumping up and down mama to make change in the lives of murderers and thieves. He can use you, too.

Take some time today and consider what kind of ripples you are sending. Are there some areas you know of that could use some positive ripples?

Carol

Don’t Go Messin’ with My Status Quo

I had a dream.

It was a nightmare really – for me anyway.

In my dream I was standing beside a lunchroom-style table full of children. The children down the table from me were passing out colorful beads and charms. I didn’t notice them at first, because I was helping the person next to me fill out the information on a coupon. (The crazy dreams of a mother.) I’m not sure if she knew how to fill it out herself or not, but I was focused on showing her just how to do it, because I’m oh-so coupon knowledgeable. Wink…

Join me today at the Internet Cafe. Click HERE to read the rest of my devotion.

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Carol

Deep Down – Presidential Prayer Team

Have you ever felt something in your bones? The expression originated when people with arthritis could “feel” the change in barometric pressure. You may hear old-timers say, “Rain is coming. I can feel it in my bones.” What they are really saying is, “I know it. Deep down.”

What are you feeling deep down about our presidential election? Join me today as I post for the Presidential Prayer Team. Click HERE to read the rest of my devotion.

Please join me in praying for our upcoming presidential election.

**Just a reminder – this link to PPT is only a direct link today, October 14. After today, you may read the devotion by selecting this date from the drop down menu. 

Carol