Monday, July 30, 2012


Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. Proverbs 3:5-6

Worry. We can spend a lot of time doing exactly that. And yet Jesus Himself pointed out the futility of this misspent energy. He asked, "Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?" Instead the author of Proverbs gives us a better option. He suggests that we "Trust in the Lord with all our heart." This is more than a mental assent. It is a heartfelt commitment to put all our fears and worries in His hand. We put it to rest. Then the author says not to depend on our own understanding. This is easier said than done. We want to depend on our own thinking, our own logic, but God is saying, "Trust me, let go." Finally we are told to seek God's will and He will show us which path to take. Today, when you are tempted to worry, fear starts to take over your emotions, stop and trust God. Let go of your own thinking and seek His will. He promises He will get you through. ~Ron Ovitt


Father, I am so prone to worry and fear. Today, I will trust in you. I will forsake my own understanding and seek your will. Direct my path I pray. In Jesus’ name. ~ Amen.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Why I love God

There are a million reasons why I love God but for the sake of blogging, I’m going to try to keep this simple. I can’t promise this will be short but I will do my best. I love God because He is so much more than we hear about. And He is so much more than just the author of life. God is a real character in my story. When you read a romance novel, do you find yourself falling in love with the author? I didn’t think so. If you’re like me, you fall in love with the characters. And because God is real and an active character in my story, I love Him.

It’s been said and written that the best things in life are meant to be shared. When good things happen in our lives, we naturally want to share them with the people we love and care about. The Bible tells us that God is love and because He is love, He naturally desires to love us and He wants us to love Him back, authentically. God has lots of goodies that he would like to share with us through His favor on us and He wants to bless us with godly wisdom but that can only be imparted to us through a personal relationship with Him. It’s so difficult to explain God and how He loves us because His love is lavish, unconditional and overwhelming in the most amazing and extraordinary way. 

I’ve learned that love can never be forced. You could never force or make a person love you. And although God has the power to make us love Him back, He allows us to choose. I love that about Him. I love that He didn’t create us to be robots programmed to do what He wants us to do. It is His love and His kindness and His mercy and His grace that transforms the human heart.

To prove to you that love can not be forced, I will leave you with this example: If you were held as a prisoner in a foreign country, a guard could easily use his “almost” unlimited power to make you do things you thought you would never do. With applied force, a guard could make you renounce your God, curse your family, work without pay, eat human excrement, etc. But what the guard can not make you do with applied force is love him. 

God’s word says that we love because He loved us first. Our love is a response to Gods love for us. And because of that, we have the capacity and the ability to love God and love others. When you have a real God encounter and God reveals to you His lavish love for you, it’s more than just remarkable and super-natural. It’s transformative. When God reveals Himself to you, you will never be the same.

If God has not revealed Himself to you yet, it is never God’s fault. The problem is never God. The problem is that our hearts are hard and closed off and we’re too proud or stubborn or afraid to allow God in. I know this because I avoided God for 31 years before I Iet Him in. I avoided Him out of fear. And I see this all the time in people. Many people believe they have to clean up their act before they can get serious with God. And they believe the fallacy that they need to clean up their act or be perfect to go to church or to enter into a relationship with Him but it’s just the opposite. God invites us to come as we are, because it's His job to do the clean up. He can only change you and clean you up, if you are willing. You must be open to it. The Christian life is a process of learning, and growing and changing. Nobody is perfect and nobody gets it right all the time. Sometimes we fall, sometimes we stumble, sometimes we fail miserably but God already knows this about us and He loves us anyway. He is full of mercy and grace and he corrects us gently not to condemn us or shame us but to give us rest from living lives that are not congruent with how He designed us to live. He created us for love and to love, to be peacemakers, to enter into His rest through a relationship with Him and to share God’s love with others.

The difference between man and God I’ve learned is this: Man will fail you. God will not. Man will pursue you until he has you and God never stops pursuing you. God pursues because He longs for us to share our hearts and lives with him daily, He wants to love us and bless us through a relationship with Him. He's going to love you either way but through a relationship with Him, you will feel His love and experience His presence in your life. Through a relationship with Him, He teaches us, shapes us, molds us, makes us better and wiser. Yes indeed, what He desires is a relationship with us but He will never force Himself on you. He allows you to choose. And He wants us to cultivate that relationship with Him by choosing to spend time with Him through prayer, reading the Bible, sitting in solitude being still before Him so we can hear Him, and through regular church attendance to hear the Word of God and to worship Him. When we do these things, our relationship with Him grows and we go deeper.

Let me ask you this: Can you recall a time when a significant person in your life sat you down with the sole purpose of wanting to know your heart more deeply, fully expecting to enjoy what would be found there? I can’t but did you know that that’s what God wants? He wants us to open our hearts to Him, daily. This happens through a relationship. He wants us to talk to Him through prayer about our desires, our hopes our dreams, our struggles, our needs and what hurts us deep inside.

I love God because He is always pursuing us. Some of us see it and ignore it and some of us see it and respond to it. I love Him because He calls us friend and beloved and because we are the apple of His eye. God has revealed His passionate and tender love for humanity and that was demonstrated in a very powerful way at Calvary, at the cross when He sent His only begotten Son, Jesus to take our place. 2000 years ago, Jesus died on a cross for our sins friends. And three days later, He was resurrected and joined His Father in heaven and when we believe that He took our place and paid our sin debt, and accept Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior, we are saved and born again spiritually. It’s radical, I know. It blew my mind too when I first learned about it but I continued to pray to God about this and begged Him to help me understand this truth. And He did! And I have experienced the hand of God in my life more times than I can remember. 

Beloved, God sets His affection on us. And His desire is to free us from bondage, to bless us, to prosper us, and to dwell in our hearts but sadly many reject Him. I rejected Him for many years, for three decades to be exact and compartmentalized Him for many years only calling on Him when I was in trouble, when I needed Him, or when I felt sad. I can’t imagine the anguish in His heart because I rejected Him over and over and over or how His heart churned. And what I love about God is that He never gave up on me. He never stopped loving me. He never stopped pursuing me because He’s not a quitter. And God will never give up on you either.

Can I ask you a few questions?

Have you ever felt sympathy for a friend who lost their spouse?

Have you ever sat in silence as a friend cried out in grief to you because someone broke their heart?

Did you hear the churning of their heart, the deep distress?

God cries too in distress when we reject Him. We break His heart every time we reject Him. And yet, God does not give up! And it’s because He’s committed to love. God is the very essence of love and love never fails my friend. He is relentless in His pursuit.

God sent us His son, Jesus to rescue mankind. And through Jesus, He defeated Satan and destroyed the power that sin wields over the human heart. God invites us into a beautiful relationship with Him through His Son and is willing to forgive and begin a new thing in your life. And that’s why I love God.  

No matter how bad you’ve blown it, nothing is too hard for God. Nothing. There is nothing you’ve done that God can not and will not forgive.

Nothing is impossible for God or with God because He is a great healer, the God of second chances and new beginnings and fresh starts and I just love that about Him!

Until next time,

xx, Ruthie

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. ~Romans 10:9-10

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A relationship prayer

I heard this prayer tonight beautifully spoken and delivered by Dan Allender and it really spoke to me. I changed the words of his original prayer just a little but much of the content still remains the same. His message tonight was on leadership but this prayer touches on all kinds of relationships. It’s a beautiful prayer filled with great humility. It’s honest, real and I think very relatable especially for those who take the time to face the dark parts of their hearts. It stopped me in my tracks when I was listening to it and I wanted to share this with you in hopes that it might bless someone else as well.

Father, Son, Spirit, we love you, we trust you, and we bless you. We know and acknowledge that You are always up to good in our lives. Father, we ask that You help us when we begin to delve in and face the dark parts of our hearts and begin to look at those sections of our own way of relating to others that are contrary to what you desire. We find ourselves reacting based on feelings of frustration and disappointment. And we understand that what you want for us is not merely a sense of conviction but rest for our souls, that we can turn this over to You, that we can trust that He who began a good work in us will complete it [Philippians 1:6]. Father, we ask that you would bring us to a greater sense of openness. Son, will you speak to us with greater clarity and Spirit will you mature us to become more and more like Jesus. Father we ask that you would hear this humble prayer and be at work in us and allow our hearts to move forward honoring the gifts you have given us so that our lives will reflect the kingdom of God in all regards. We ask this in Your precious and powerful name. Amen.

God is always working

Did you know that God can use a single moment to transform your life for the better? God is always working, even when we have no idea what He's doing. He loves to bless us with His amazing, awe-inspiring goodness, even when we least expect it or when things don't seem to be going the right way. Romans 8:28 is a popular verse and it never gets old. It's one of the most encouraging verses in the entire Bible. "And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them" (NLT). I love the word "everything" in this verse. We tend to think of bad things and difficult seasons, but "everything" includes more. It includes the good things as well as the things that we are indifferent about. God takes all of those things and works them out for our good. He wants you to be the kind of person who thinks about His promises all the time, who believes the best, and who keeps hoping when others just give up. If you live this way, I believe you'll be amazed at how God works in your life. You'll experience His favor in "God-ordained moments." A God-ordained moment is an incredible, supernatural event that God's been setting up, working behind the scenes so that you can experience His goodness at just the right time.

These God-ordained moments don't come on our schedule, but when they come, all we can say is: "Wow!"

I want to remind you not to allow discouragement, a busy schedule or the hurts from your past to cause you to miss what God is doing in your life. Most importantly, don't give up on being blown away by God's favor. Because of how big our God is and how much He loves us, I believe that we can experience "Wow" moments on a continual basis, as long as we continue to love Him and obey His Word. I’m believing with you to experience God-ordained moments in your life.

~Author Unknown

For whoever finds me finds life, and obtains favor from the LORD… Proverbs 8:35

Today's thought for the day

Did you know that we have an unlimited capacity to grow and to change? We have the ability to become wiser, better, healed and whole because God is the potter and we are the clay. We are His beautiful workmanship—His lovely work of art and we are who God says we are. Beloved, He [God] who began a good work in us, will finish it my friends. Through our life experiences, He is constantly shaping us, molding us and making us into something better, preparing us for our destiny. God always takes us from good to better and from better to great. Our former limitations do not define us and while everyone has weaknesses, our weaknesses do not define who we are and they do not have to control us. We have the power to resist and to overcome and to say no at anytime. It's never too late to change because God's super-natural strength will help you when you ask for it and because He is the God of second chances.

Until next time,

xx, Ruthie

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Slow Me Down, Lord

Ease the pounding of my heart by the quieting of my mind. Steady my hurried pace. Give me, amidst the day's confusion, the calmness of the everlasting hills.

Break the tensions of my nerves and muscles with the soothing music of singing streams that live in my memory.

Help me to know the magical, restoring power of sleep. Teach me the art of taking "minute vacations"... slowing down to look at a flower, to chat with a friend, to read a few lines from a good book.

Remind me of the fable of the hare and the tortoise; that the race is not always to the swift; that there is more to life than measuring its speed.

Let me look up at the branches of the towering oak and know that it grew slowly and well. Inspire me to send my own roots down deep into the soil of life's endearing values ... that I may grow toward the stars of my greater destiny.

Slow me down, Lord.
{Wilferd Arlan Peterson}

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A beautiful morning

My view this morning
Good morning mi gente,

I hope and pray you're all doing well on this beautiful and magnificent Wednesday morning. I'm working from home today and my mini office (which is part of my master bedroom) and desk face this big empty field behind my house as I write to you. The outside temperature is perfect in Chicago this morning, such a blessing considering the very hot temperatures we've endured for weeks on end. I have the windows wide open and can see the sun shining brightly on the field in front of me and on the horizon as I hear the birds chirping this morning. There's a soft breeze that I feel on my skin and it reminds me of God's goodness and that He is very present. This cool breeze feels like soft hugs from God. What a blessing to be able to take this in. This feels right, and necessary and so good for my soul. It's moments like this that fill my heart with gratitude, gratitude for life, sacred moments and for Gods goodness. Even though life is less than perfect and even though I have circumstances that try to rob me of my peace, it's moments like this that help me realize that God restores us in moments if we allow Him. And this moment, this beautiful early morning is blessing me richly and filling me up in ways I find difficult to describe. If I could bottle this feeling and send it off to the world, I'm pretty sure it would eradicate the need for blood pressure medication. God is good my friends and He loves us so much, always and forever and nothing we could ever do will ever change that. Is that good or what???

Happy Wednesday to you my darlings. May God's love and peace rest upon your hearts and in your homes and at the work place and in your relationships today and always.

And remember, God loves you, always and forever. Wishing you a beautiful day ....

Big hugs to all, 

xx, Ruthie