Golden Nuggets

He’s here!

Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means “God is with us.”

Matthew 1:23 NLT

In Matthew 1, we see the angel confirming to Joseph the good news–Mary will have a son, named Jesus, who will save his people from their sins. In verse 23, the prophecy of his coming is recounted. After years of waiting, the prophecies were going to be fulfilled. The king was coming! He entered the world he created under the humblest of conditions and nothing has ever been the same.

It is the same way when we accept him and he enters our hearts, nothing is ever the same. From that day forward, we have the assurance that he is with us.

This is something I know, but this year God has moved me from theory to application and I see it a little clearer. He is with me, and he will give me everything I need, because he IS everything I need.

I offer the words of a well-loved Christmas song, “O come, let us adore him.” It serves as an instruction and an invitation. Come! Adore him! The angels did: they burst into a chorus of praise after the proclamation of the good news about Jesus. The shepherds did: they rushed to see him when they heard the news. The wise men did: they followed his star from afar off and came to worship. Mary and Joseph did: they were obedient to God in caring for their son and Saviour. No matter our status or position in this world–Jesus is the great equalizer. We all bow before the king.

Come and adore him this Christmas. Isn’t he beautiful? He came to save us all those years ago, just as promised. He didn’t leave us alone and he never will. Ever beautiful, ever present, ever worthy–He’s here!

Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others- the armies of heaven- praising God and saying, “Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”

Luke 2: 13 & 14 NLT

Don’t keep your cares

And you saw how the Lord your God cared for you all along the way as you traveled through the wilderness, just as a father cares for his child. Now he has brought you to this place. But even after all he did, you refused to trust the Lord your God…”

Deuteronomy 1:31-32 NLT

Though this passage refers to a specific people in a specific time, it is applicable in our present day. In this passage, Moses was reminding the people of Israel of how God, in his kindness and fatherly love, had cared for them and guided them.

Despite all he’d done, they doubted and failed to trust him fully. They had a history marred with distrustful grumbling and complaining. Relatable?

Just as they did, we often find ourselves facing difficult situations as well. No level of positive mindset or toxic positivity will prevent this. We do not live in a perfect world. The evils and cares of the world will at some point affect us all. They remind us that this is not the original design and make us long for a heavenly home that is to come, but not yet. It is okay to take your distress and burdens to God, it is encouraged. He welcomes our disappointments, hardships, and sorrows. Prayer in this way is one of our most powerful tools in dealing with our woes. We are instructed to cast all cares on him.

Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.

1 Peter 5:7 NLT

The danger is found when we keep our cares instead of casting them. They accumulate, they fester, they multiply; all while our faith diminishes. It is an insidious process resulting in distrust and discontented complaining.

This type of complaining calls into question whether he’s fair, if he’s even good, or if he even cares. It opens a crack to allow the enemy into plant seeds of doubt against God’s character, ushering in the same unbelief the people of Israel experienced.

Left to our own thoughts and reasoning, it is easy to lose sight of God’s mercy and grace, just as they did. Mercy reminds me that us that we are not receiving our just due for all of our mistakes and missteps, grace reminds us that we didn’t earn or deserve the blessings we have. They shift us to a posture of gratitude and humility. And humility reminds us that we don’t know as much as we think we do. God knows best.

And so, when we feel entitled to grumble, with humility and childlike faith, we can instead cast our cares and accept his will as the best thing, not because we understand it but because we trust him. He has already proven himself.

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.

Romans 8:28 NLT

So, today as many of us turn our hearts and minds toward gratitude and the giving of thanks, maybe this is the perfect time to complain less and cast more. I pray God will give us the strength to do just that. And as we gather and give thanks, I pray we experience his mercy and grace with truly grateful hearts.

Golden Nuggets

Don’t let me fall

I cried out, “I am slipping!” but your unfailing love, O Lord, supported me.

Psalm 94:18

Because the Lord is so merciful, he keeps us from falling. Life can present us with a slippery slope of trials and challenges. Temptations can lead us on a downward spiral. Emotional challenges can cause us to lose our footing.

In all of this, thank you, Lord, for your unfailing love! Despite what we face, what happens to us and sometimes even what we bring on ourselves– when we call out to him in our distress, he will always hear us. His eyes are on his children, and he listens for our cry. And because his mercy is everlasting, just like he caught Peter before the waves could overtake him, he will do the same for you and me.

Golden Nuggets

Strength in Christ

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Philippians 4:13

This is such a beloved verse. To know that I can do anything through Christ, that’s good news! I can land the job, get the promotion, succeed and thrive in this life—through Christ. And surely, I can.

But I think Paul wanted us to grasp a greater truth. He had just spoken about how he made it in situations when he had plenty and when he had nothing. Rich or poor, full or hungry, his solution was the same—Christ. He was saying, “Hey y’all! I found the secret to happiness and satisfaction in life, and it’s Christ!” Whether on the mountain of victory or the valley of suffering, I’ll emerge triumphantly because Christ will give me strength. He will be my strength.

I challenge us today to trust our stories to the Master Author, knowing that every page was written before we were ever born. I pray God gives us the grace to enjoy the story as we live it in real time. And when we reach a difficult chapter, a plot twist or cliff hanger, I pray he reminds us that he will be our strength. And because of that, there is nothing we can’t do. We will have victory in this, yes even this, through Christ.


A prayer of adoration


Thank you for always being with us. There’s no place we can go to escape your presence. Your eyes are always on us. Your ears are always open. Your arm of strength is always ready to fight for us. Your plan will always prevail. We know this God, but if we fully internalized it, how much more peace would we experience? Thank you for teaching us more and more every day to trust you and believe your every word. And when we forget what you’ve taught us, thank you for reminding us again. Your patience never runs out. Your love is unfailing. Your mercy is forever. I pray this prayer with love and adoration and in Jesus’ wonderful name,


The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right; his ears are open to their cries for help.

Psalm 34:15 NLT

A prayer of blessing

Before the year ends, I want to thank everyone who took the time to read my blog this year. Your support, messages, and kind words have encouraged me more than you know. I pray that something you read was a blessing to you. As we leave 2021 in the past and look forward to greeting a brand-new year, I just want to offer a prayer of blessing for my readers.


It’s a privilege and a blessing to be here at the close of another year. For the past 12 months you’ve watched over us, protected us and blessed us. You were so generous with your gifts. When things were unstable, you stood firm. When times were dark, you were the light. For everything we lost, we learned that you would always make up the difference. You were always more than enough.

I’m asking you to bless those who’ve read any portion of my blog this year. Bless their families, their finances, their health. Give them wisdom and peace and joy. Keep them safe and in the center of your will. Above all else, give them a closer relationship with you. Give them confidence in you as they embark on the journey of a new year. This year has not been easy, and the prospect of the unknown can seem daunting. Remove any fear and anxiety that may be taunting them. Remind them that when they walk with you, they can laugh without fear of the future.

Let them be full of faith, always abounding, always growing, bearing much fruit and bringing glory to your name. Let them always remember how much you love them. Whatever you have in store for 2022, thank you in advance.

In Jesus’ name,


Thanks again to each of you and if it’s in the Lord’s will, I’ll see you in 2022❤

The Lord bless you and keep you;

The Lord make His face shine upon you, And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,

And give you peace.

Numbers 6:24-26


The gratitude filter

It’s officially winter and it’s the most wonderful time of the year!

That’s debatable.

I love the holidays, but I’m more of a sun and fun girl. But my least favorite season—fall. I kind of hate it. Leaves dying, cold weather inevitably coming. To say I hate it is a little dramatic, but I’ve always thought fall was overrated.

I remember driving one day this fall and realizing the leaves on a specific type of tree had turned a brilliant orange. Others were red, green or yellow. But the orange stood out to me.  I’m thirty?? years old and I’ve never seen them this shade. I’ve always thought the fall colors were beautiful, but cliché as it may sound, I felt like I was seeing them anew. It was so much so that I asked a few of my family and friends if the leaves looked different to them this year.  It looked like the color saturation you see with a social media filter. For weeks, every time I drove I paid attention. I took alternative routes to see what the trees looked like in other areas. It was absolutely beautiful and it gave me a new respect for fall. Still, I couldn’t figure out why it looked so different, until I realized it wasn’t the trees.

It was me. I’m different this year.

I’ve been working on gratitude, being more present and savoring the moments. I guess it was a success because I found myself enthralled by something I used to be indifferent towards.  

I’ve found myself looking at things a little differently lately. I don’t know if it’s because of an approaching birthday, the ever raging pandemic, the innumerable ways my life has changed, or all of the above. Either way, things are different and I am different. The past two years have taught me a lot. Don’t take the small moments for granted. Savor your happiness. Find joy. Seek peace. Wisdom is more valuable than money. One of the most impactful lessons has been an old faithful. Gratitude.

In my lowest and highest moments this year, and I’ve had my share of both, there was always something to be grateful for. During one of my more difficult times I began listing five things I was grateful for during my nightly prayers. Some days my list went over five. Some days it was challenging because I honestly didn’t feel grateful. So I started listing small things like, being able to smell my favorite scent or something that made me laugh or smile that day. That caused a shift for me.

When I started looking for things to be grateful for, I started finding things to be grateful for.

This is a gentle reminder for anyone reading (mostly for myself) that when looking at your situation, it helps to use a filter. Look through a lens of gratitude and see what changes. Notice the difference in color, contrast and tone. Does it look any different? Is there anything you missed at first glance?

As my gratitude practice progressed, I began to list five of God’s characteristics to thank him for. His kindness, patience, love, mercy, forgiveness, wisdom, friendship… I went on like this for a week and I never needed to repeat one.

When my circumstances aren’t overflowing with reasons to be grateful at first glance, I can look again with a different lens. And no matter the season, I can always be grateful to God for who he is. He never changes. He is always the same and because of that, I’ll always have a reason to be grateful.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Hebrews 13:8

A prayer of reflection


How can I thank you? I’m reflecting today on specific events, dates, and seasons in my life. I wouldn’t be here today if it had not been for you. You have taken me to some high heights and through some deep lows. In my reflection, I can’t trace a time when you have neglected me. You’ve never walked away, never broken a promise. Instead, you’ve been consistent. You’ve been patient. You’ve given me freedom and joy and peace and grace without measure.

The most skilled and gifted among us have written songs and poems and think pieces about you and I can’t attempt to compete with the beauty of those tributes. I don’t have anything beautiful or profound today. I just want to thank you. Everything I am and everything I have is because of you.

In Jesus’ name,



Doing vs. Being

I think a lot of today’s culture emphasizes “doing” at the expense of “being.” But what good is it to accumulate a beautiful list of accolades without being settled in your soul? Without being who God has called us to be, can we truly do what he has called us to do?

I think the being comes first, then the doing. Though often lived out simultaneously, the inner work takes precedence over the outward deeds. I even believe that the inner work fuels the outward deeds.

When I say “inner work,” I’m referring to heart and character, all the things that cannot be seen. Addressing things like motives and intentions make our actions more impactful. When I think about acts of kindness that have been shown to me, the motive and intention has often resonated with me even more than the actual deed.

Does God feel the same way? I think he does. Though he wants us to bring him our best, he also doesn’t desire sacrifices that are not produced from a clean heart.

You do not desire a sacrifice, or I would offer one. You do not want a burnt offering. The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit. You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.

Psalms 51: 16-17

God is more concerned with what the world can’t see. He looks at the heart.

So why are we so concerned with what the world sees? Is it for significance? Is it to keep up with what others are doing? Is it because we are trying to earn our worth by doing enough? Is it because we aren’t sure what would be left if we removed the surface level stuff? I’d say all of the above, but I can only speak for me. As some of my “stuff” has been stripped away, some voluntarily and some involuntarily, God is teaching me that what I do may be different, but my worth is still the same to him. Everything has changed, but at the same time, nothing has changed. He loves me no less, but I love him more.

In my doing, I also have permission to be. Be settled. Be peaceful. Be intentional. Be who I’m called to be.

My worth isn’t connected to what I do. It’s connected to who am I, which is connected to who he is. And because of that, it will never change or diminish. It’s settled. I can exhale.

Selah ❤


A prayer of gratitude


Thank you for the blessings you so graciously shower on me. I acknowledge my imperfection, I am so undeserving. Yet in your great mercy and love, you’ve adopted me, cleaned me up, and given me a hope and a future. It’s a blessing to be included in your plan. But most of all, it’s a blessing to be included in your family. I thank you for your great gifts and your benefits. I thank you for the table you have set before me. But I understand and acknowledge that the greatest gift you’ve given me is yourself. I don’t take it lightly, God. And today, I just want to thank you.

In Jesus’ name,