Ready to Create A Travel (with God) Journal?

If you’re ready to start your own travel journal, buckle up sister!

I’ve kept many types of journals over the years — prayer, gratitude, health, etc. — but when I cracked open my first “Travel Journal” in January, life changed.

I first read about a travel journal in Allen Arnold’s The Story of With, a book mentioned in a past post, Three Books I’m Reading This Winter.

It reads:

“Those brave enough to carry a travel journal for their adventures with God reveal hearts of expectancy. There is such freedom when you live in this posture of expectancy while letting go of all your expectations. There’s no demand on how the Story of your life will go. Relinquish the script you’ve been holding so tight and replace it with an expectancy for all God desires. Not just for you but that He wants to do with you. The journal reminds you of the adventure you are on with God.”

 

What could happen if I created a designated spot to record so-called “random” ideas and sparks of God’s truths?

 

Well, let me tell you.

 

Your spiritual eyes do more than see. They quicken with insight and wonder.

 

It’s why my little leather journal stays with my Bible at all times. Observations leap from the paper-thin page onto the cream-colored thicker ones. Most times, I jot them down immediately. Later, I’ll ask God to show me how or where they could be applied. Some get straight to work, while others take their own sweet time.

 

Your spiritual ears⏤those that God transforms from hearing to listening⏤awaken.

 

For instance, while watching a movie several weeks ago, the father of the main character, a violinist, noted a specific issue in her playing. She may have fallen for the idea that she was simply reading from a script but in reality, God answered a question I’d jotted down weeks ago.

 

Becoming intentional is a simple gesture of faith — engaging this belief that the Spirit of Truth peels back the obvious to reveal a deeper reality if we’re willing to show up.

 

In a greater sense, I think of Mary visiting Jesus’ tomb that early morning. She came with spices expecting the obvious — a body in the beginning stages of decay. But what she found was a large stone rolled away, an empty tomb, and two men in dazzling white clothes asking why do you seek the living One among the dead? She showed up because of her love for Jesus and was blessed by experiencing a glorious new reality.

This same living One lives in us, with us, and us with Him. Are you ready to join the adventure?

 

Tips for Creating Your Travel Journal

 

  • Pick a journal without lines. Being a visual person, I sometimes draw out an idea that’s forming and I have a feeling I’m not alone, so avoiding lines is a plus. Also, no boundaries on a page remind me that all things are possible with God.

 

  • Keep a designated pen nearby. So far, I’ve used only my go-to Pilot Precise V-5 in black for the entire journal, but whatever you choose, keep it handy because as the Chinese Proverb reminds us the faintest ink is more powerful than the strongest memory.

 

Creating a travel journal has deepened my relationship with the Lord so how could I not offer someone else a head start in creating their own?

Share a favorite place to travel and consider yourself entered into the random giveaway for this genuine leather journal!

 

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Thank you for stopping by! I hope you’ll decide to stay awhile. If you’d like to become a part of the community, simply type your e-address in the top right-hand sidebar. >>>>

Bi-weekly posts offer a pause of goodness to your busy days. And once a month, you’ll also receive a fun but pithy newsletter with the latest happenings in the Tiny House on the Hill, along with practical ideas for drawing nearer to God and loving others well.

So, come on over and sit a spell. I’d love to get to know you!

 

Image by Dirk Vetter from Pixabay

Searching for A New Morning Devotional? Win My Favorite Here!

Yep, I gotcha covered!

That is if you’re not into full-on fluffy, feel-good words that drip thicker than syrup but leave the soul empty, hungry inside. Give me Truth in a relatable way and God will do the rest.

Because it matters, right? Devotionals are an investment. Not only do they cost money (unless you win this copy!), they also become a companion of sorts. It’s why pages that start clean with crisp edges can end with tear-smudged words, spilled coffee, and cornered edges. In my copy of Awaken: 90 Days with the God Who Speaks by Priscilla Shirer, you’ll find them all.

 

I didn’t read a devotional, I went on a journey.

 

And as a result, God taught me the beauty of biblical community, bruising a few toes, and severing one in the process. He also revealed through His Word and those He gave her, what real freedom looks like, how to listen for His voice, and how to fan the flame into a frenzy for God’s glory.

But y’all, the words He chose and placed on Priscilla’s heart to share in recent days have especially awakened my spirit to His presence through both encouragement and conviction.

 

These words are for you and me, and anyone longing to draw closer to the One who draws us near:

 

  • “No act of service is too small. The little piece you do matters. Every piece matters. They’re like ripples of water circling outward from a skipped rock. Everything you do creates an impact somewhere else you cannot see, but it’s a part of the big picture that God is putting together.”
  • “Compassion is willing to be inconvenienced. Compassion compels.”
  • “In-between times are necessary. They are the bridge between what He has done for you and what He’s preparing to do in your future.”
  • “He wants us to see our weakness mixing with His strength, causing our work to actually…work.”
  • “When our hearts are full of gratitude and humility, certain of God’s love, and when we genuinely prize the worth of those around us, we will release a steady stream of graciousness that refreshes others through everything we say.”

 

And then there was Day 64:

“Your God can be trusted. He will grant you the full supply you need to excel at His purposes today, no matter how varied or prodigious those tasks may be. Every decision you need to make, every task you need to accomplish, every relationship you need to navigate, every element of daily life you need to traverse, God has already perfectly matched it up with an equivalent-to-overflowing supply of His grace.

…because of His extravagant grace you will never lack, you’ll be more willing and able to give freely of yourself and your resources, certain that God will always replenish your supply.”

I read this on a day when my heart skipped that extra beat it seems to have⏤a day when, before opening the book to this page, I was frazzled, not sure how to arrange the to-dos.

My mouth fell open and almost flooded from the tears rolling down my cheek as I read her words…twice.

“God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work.” 2 Corinthians 9:8 CSB

 

This is our God! He is personal and He is present, whether we feel it or not.

 

“A better hope is introduced, through which we draw near to God.” Hebrews 7:19 CSB

Did one of the above quotes speak to you today? Please share! You’ll encourage others and also have a chance to win a copy on Friday.

 

*If you don’t want to wait to grab a copy, Amazon has temporarily reduced the price of Awaken: 90 Days with the God Who Speaks. By purchasing the book through the orange link, I will receive enough money to put toward a cup of coffee at no extra expense to you. For more information on my affiliate statement, please see the sidebar. Thanks!

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Thank you for stopping by! I hope you’ll decide to stay awhile. If you’d like to become a part of the community, simply type your e-address in the top right-hand sidebar. >>>>

Bi-weekly posts offer a pause of goodness to your busy days, and once a month, you’ll also receive a fun but pithy newsletter with the latest happenings in the Tiny House on the Hill, practical ideas for drawing nearer to God and loving others well.

So, come on over and sit a spell. I’d love to get to know you!

Photo by Nienke Broeksema on Unsplash

While You Wait Outside Hospital Doors for a Loved One

It’s a helpless feeling, isn’t it?

Leaving loved ones on the stoop of hospital doors, entrusting healthcare workers to fill in the gaps we want to fill but can’t.

Lives lost, dream weddings postponed, jobs eliminated, and the inability to enter health facilities with loved ones being admitted, are just some of the situations we find ourselves in these days.

Several weeks ago, my stepmom took dad to the ER for a high fever. Saying goodbye at the stiffly guarded steel doors only to return alone to her car and wait was one of her hardest moments.

 

“The worst part of life is waiting. The best part of life is having someone worth the wait.”

 

When Jessica Brumley penned these words, she wasn’t referring to the same kind of wait, but the words still ring true, don’t they?

Choosing to see blessings beyond our circumstances is an act of faith.

Recently, I started creating sensory-based pauses (mini-devotions) for my subscribers to enjoy while in specific spaces. One month is it was the garden. Last month, a picnic. For each of the five senses, I offered a simple prompt to help push the pause button and focus on the goodness of God that stretches far beyond a steering wheel.

 

The simple act of focusing on God turns an upside-down world right-side up.

 

Today, “A Pause While You Wait” (including an inspirational page to color) is my gift to you. Feel free to share this post with your circle of friends because sometimes we don’t know we’ll need it until we do.

 

“You will keep the mind that is dependent upon you in perfect peace, for it is trusting in you.” Isaiah 26:3

 

To download your copy of A Pause While You Wait, simply click here. The coloring page is included.

 

 

 

 

Is there some way I can pray for you today?

 

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Thank you for stopping by! I hope you’ll decide to stay awhile. If you’d like to become a part of the community, simply type your e-address in the righthand sidebar. >>>>

Bi-weekly posts offer a pause of goodness to your busy days, and once a month, you’ll also receive a fun but pithy newsletter with the latest happenings in the Tiny House on the Hill, practical ideas for drawing nearer to God and loving others well.

So, come on over and sit a spell. I’d love to get to know you!

© Can Stock Photo / scottshoots

Engaging Our Five Senses this Summer + Starbucks Giveaway!

Image by Jill Wellington from Pixabay

 

Afternoon storms, buzzing bumblers, and Ricky the lizard give it away.

Summer is rounding the corner. And although this is the season known for relaxation, it can become one of the busiest in no time flat.

If I’m not careful, my heart can become a hurried one, drying out quicker than the beach towels sunning on my deck after an afternoon swim. When I hear the edges of my heart begin to crisp, I know there’s only one way to reset my stay-in-step with the Spirit button and that’s to set aside some dedicated time to spend with God.

Confession, repentance, and receiving God’s grace and mercy help me get back on track, but how do I keep my heart hydrated to avoid the snap crackle pop in the first place?

“The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.” Isaiah 58:11

 

It’s hard to be guided when we get ahead of God.

 

Another way to keep the heart hydrated?

 

Remain attentive to the small but generous goodness of God that water the soul and refresh our spirit.

 

Want to join me as you did in spring to pause and praise our Maker for these morsels of goodness?

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What We See:

  • Fireflies glittering in all their glory when the world goes to sleep.
  • Summer sunsets (Click here to download/print sunset verses to read as you see the day come to a close.)
  • The United States of America flag flying high!
  • Children splashing in the pool with smiles that stretch ear-to-ear. “Then followed that beautiful season…Summer…filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light, and the landscape lay as if new created in all the freshness of childhood.” Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

 

What We Hear:

  • If we’re lucky, the chug of homemade peach ice cream churning on the back porch. Is there anything more delightful?
  • Hot licks of fire and the sound of delicious that happens when marshmallows and chocolate bars collide in between graham crackers.
  • Thundering waves pounding the shore.
  • The crack of a ripened watermelon. Followed by the sound of a salt shaker. (Is that weird?)
  • Fireworks celebrating our freedom. (Thank You, Lord!)
  • Flip flops slapping cement.
  • Your breath as you quietly lie on a blanket taking in all summer has to offer. “Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under the trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.” John Lubbock

 

What We Smell:

  • Coconut and sunshine in a bottle: Coppertone.
  • Salty breezes.
  • Cheeseburgers sizzling on the grill.
  • The earthy, fresh scent created after a summer thunderstorm.

 

What We Touch:

  • Those first slow and methodical steps into the pool, or the slicing of water if you’re brave enough to dive in before dipping the toes.
  • Granules of sand.
  • The warmth of your skin.
  • Berries! It’s the perfect picking season.
  • The force of wind when you poke your arm out the car window on a sunny day.

 

What We Taste:

  • Syrupy sweet Popsicles that can be broken in half and shared. Or stowed away in the back of a freezer to be enjoyed alone. Not that I’d know anything about that.
  • The nectar from a slightly squeezed honeysuckle blossom.
  • The fresh tang of cilantro…on anything!
  • Green matcha latte with whole milk, two extra scoops of matcha, and stevia (Is that too specific? Okay, it’s my new favorite but leave a comment below to be included in a Starbucks giveaway so you can enjoy your own favorite summertime drink!)

 

From the rising of the sun to its setting, the name of the LORD is to be praised. Psalm 113:3 ESV

So tell me, what’s one good gift from God you will pause to praise this summer? Is it something you see, hear, sniff, touch, or taste?

(The winner of the $10.00 Starbucks gift card will be notified next Monday!) *** Congratulations Charla Matthews!

 

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Thank you for stopping by! I hope you’ll decide to stay awhile. If you’d like to become a part of the community, simply type your e-address in the righthand sidebar. >>>> Bi-weekly posts offer a pause of goodness to your busy days, and once a month, you’ll also receive a fun but pithy newsletter that shares the latest happenings in the Tiny House on the Hill, along with practical ideas on drawing nearer to God and loving others well.

So, come on over and sit a spell. I’d love to get to know you!

Ten Ways to Show-Up for Others this Summer!

Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

 

Because that’s what we do, right?

As our nation slowly unfolds into a new normality, we’re all navigating what it means to go to church, to gather with friends, and to eat out {thanks to Chick-fil-A, I conquered this one early on.} But here’s one truth we know:

 

We can help others draw closer to Christ from behind our doors or in person. That’s the beauty of the show-up.

 

Every season offers unique opportunities to share the gospel. With daylight stretching long into the night, open pools of water, and enough iced tea to serve the south, summer is definitely no exception. And aren’t we blessed? Regardless of where we find ourselves during these trying times, we can joyfully love and serve in small but meaningful ways.

 

God specializes in multiplying our meager offerings for glory’s gain.

 

A poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few cents. Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others.” Mark 12:42, 43

 

A couple of years ago, I created Ten Ways to Show Up for Others This Summer, an exclusive download for the {a-mazing!} subscribers of this community. And now it’s available here. So put your own God-given creative spin on these ideas and let’s redeem the days of summer! Some ideas have been tweaked in light of our nation’s current situation but there’s enough space for us all, masked and unmasked.

What’s your favorite part of summer? Is there a particular way you minister during this season? Do share!

 

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We’d love for you to join our Creative Pauses community! Simply type your e-address in the righthand sidebar. >>>> (You can unsubscribe at any time.) Bi-weekly posts offer a pause of goodness to your busy days. And once a month, you’ll also receive a newsletter chock-full of the latest happenings in the Tiny House on the Hill. It includes ideas for drawing near to God and how to love others well. So, come on over and sit a spell. I’d love to get to know you!

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