With your permission, may I deviate a little from our regular format?
First, I want to welcome all you new subscribers. What joy and honor to have you.
In this post I’ll include something fun, something embarrassing, something encouraging, and something super exciting.
Finally, I have the pleasure of inviting you to my new and recently decorated cyberspace home. I prepared delicious inspiration to touch your heart. As you look around, may I ask you to be my eyes and let me know how you like it? Should I improve in any areas? The web address is the same. You can click HERE to look around...and please, share it with a friend.
The last week of October, hubby and I, with another couple, took a cruise for my birthday. And as a gift to myself I did something horribly embarrassing.
One morning the four of us entered the luxurious dining room in that huge ship. We sat by the window as the sun glistened over the blue ocean. After devouring a large plate of fresh fruit, I munched on my yummy oatmeal topped with lots of nuts and seeds. Suddenly, I took in a teaspoonful of something totally yucky.
My friends at the table glanced at it and verified it was a foreign substance.
With disgust in everyone’s mind, we called the waiter, who immediately apologized. Then the head waiter also came out to inspect.
They apologized profusely over and over again as they took a photo of that nasty tasting green paste inside my oatmeal.
They then offered to give us complimentary upgrade of the menu items for dinner, which we all accepted with a smile.
But here’s the embarrassing part. As I got back to the room, I realized when I pulled my vitamins out to take them with my breakfast, one had fallen into the oatmeal and began dissolving…sigh!
My cheeks grew hot with embarrassment. But since it was my birthday, the staff still gave us the higher-priced steaks for dinner.
The irony? I don’t eat meat. But hubby and the other couple delighted in the exquisitely prepared steaks.
Lesson learned: first look at the mistakes in your own oatmeal before judging other’s mistakes (Matthew 7:4 totally paraphrased).
One of my articles “Five steps to Bring back Joy After Devastation/Loss” was recently published on Crosswalk.com. You can find it HERE.
Something Super Exciting
I’m about to give birth—to a new baby—my new book entitled Now I see! How God’s Amazing Grace Turned Betrayal, Blindness and Heartache to Shining Joy.
Jason Noble, original true-life pastor Twentieth Century Fox movie Breakthrough writes “This captivating journey from tragedy to triumph through perseverance and deep faith in God will stir your heart and transform how you navigate life’s unthinkable challenges and unexpected adversities.”
And for you and only you dear inspirational family, I include below the introduction to the book. My prayer and hope is that you’ll find and experience God’s amazing and radiant grace not only in my story but in yours as well.
Some say I should be stuck in the mud of misery. I’m not. Instead, I’m dancing on the stage of victory. But for this Bolivian chica, that journey hasn’t been easy. In fact, it’s been ugly and painful. I lost my sight at thirty. My youngest son was murdered, the man responsible acquitted. Then with no warning, my husband of forty-two years said adios and divorced me.
Each of the above episodes shoved me into a dungeon of devastation. Perhaps similar to one you might be in right now. Thankfully, God didn’t leave me in the dungeon. Instead, He used my lowest points of devastation to guide me along a path to healing, redemption, and transformation. A path He invites you to take as well. That’s why I am writing this book—so that you may join me on my journey. As you do, you might find God’s treasures that will shine in the stages of your own life.
With your permission, then, may I come alongside you, dear friend? Let’s begin by clearing the misconception that I’m the author and you are the reader. Not at all. We’re friends already. If you have this book on your screen or in your hands, our bonding has begun. I’m here for you and with you.
Maybe at this moment you are sitting on the floor with the pieces of your broken heart strewn around you. Turmoil has turned your world upside down, and the flood of tears won’t stop. Answers, healing, solutions, and change are nowhere to be found in the ugly chaos and dark fog of despair.
How do I know? Because I’ve been on that same floor of anguish where desperation was about to eat me for lunch. I didn’t know what day it was, whether there was rain or sunshine outside, and I didn’t even care. Fear and anguish became the intruders who refused to leave.
If you’ve been there, I wonder if your pain happened suddenly like mine. Did your distress tear at your every fiber and wound you beyond endurance? Or maybe it was a more gradual buildup of hurt and grief.
No matter what the answer, let me reassure you that God is right here with you as He was with me. He is whispering the dawning of freedom for you. But before we begin our journey together, let’s take a moment to consider three steps: the present, God’s power, and the path.
There is nothing we can do to change the ugliness of this world. There’s no way we can turn the clock back before COVID-19. Or undo the virus that has infected our lives with heartache and grief. There’s no way for us to resolve the hurt that pierced us yesterday or decades ago. We can’t wipe the darkness away or make all beautiful again.
Unless we tap into God’s power. His power is supernatural, ever-present, and majestic enough to demolish opposition, bring down walls of sorrow, and dismantle the devil’s lies.
God’s power is always at work. As He fights our battles, His Word is the sword that will slice the enemy to pieces. And let me add a daring truth. Through Christ Jesus, God will hand us victory on the platter of His love.
How can we be sure? Because He has done that very thing before. In biblical times. In recent times. In the depths of remote jungles. In the midst of crowded apartment buildings and in luxurious homes. God’s power has been showcased in all places and nations.
And how will He display that same power in the privacy of your pain? The answer is in the path.
Together, you and I will start our journey along the path that takes us from the pitiful to the powerful. I could cite tons of Scripture, craft a stern sermon, or write lines of admonition. Instead, I will show you. The words in this book invite you into the bedroom of my heart. There you’ll peek at the private rooms of my journey beginning with my days as a little girl in Bolivia whom God was preparing, perhaps to have me taste adversity at an early age.
You’ll be the judge as you turn these pages, and you’ll see how God’s hand brings His promises alive. Not so much for my benefit but for yours. So that you may see how the God of the universe watches the details of our pain. How He collects our tears in a bottle. How He hears our sobs, sees our anguish, and knows yesterday’s regrets. He knows the shame we keep zipped up in the secret compartment of our heart. And He’s so aware of the loneliness, insecurities, and worry that whisper in the silence of our nights. The journey will be surprising yet exciting. Each turn will take you higher, bring you closer, and show you greater things.
Are you ready? Then here’s a tissue. Wipe away that last tear, and let’s hop on the ride. This is my story, but the message of God’s amazing and radiant grace is yours. You’ll read about trauma, betrayal, injustice, and grief. But you’ll also see how God’s power is alive and active as it heals, soothes, and brings joy unspeakable inside a guaranteed victory that’s sweetly glorious.”
Dear friends, may I ask you to prayerfully consider being one of my influencers? When the book comes out, all you have to do is accept a complimentary copy and write a few lines of your impression of the book and share it with your friends. It’s simple, yet it would mean the world to me. You can let me know by using the CONTACT FORM on my website.
May this new fall season find you grateful for today’s provision, hopeful for what God is about to do, and excited for the way He can bring it about.
Love you all, Janet