August 17, 2017

A Devotions from the Heart Update: I Need Your Feedback


Once school is back in session and we are past Labor Day, doesn’t it feel like a new start to our year even though we are two thirds through it already? Yes, it does feel like a new start, and one that takes us into fall and all its beauty and then the holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas. I love this last third of the year!

As we move past summer break and jump back into all of our work and projects, I am going to ask everyone here a favor. Since I don’t have my comments open or do social media, I need some feedback.

If you are wondering why I don’t do social media, there is a reason. God has not given me permission. I learned quite some time ago to heed His leading in things like this even when they do not make sense. But, you are welcome to post my links on your social media. I welcome that and I know many of you already do and thank you!

The feedback I need is:

Do you prefer two or three posts a week?

What do you like about Devotions from the Heart?

What do you not like about Devotions from the Heart?

What is your favorite subject/theme of devotions?

Have my devotions impacted your life in any way?

Please know you are welcome to reply to my posts even though it says no reply. Just hit reply and write me an email, many of you have already figured that out. I have tried a dozen times to change that and it always reverts back. That is why I am telling you - just hit reply. If you are not a subscriber, my email address is: ksuecheek@sbcglobal.net 

In case you have wondered what happened to my book pursuit, my proposal for my devotional book is with a publisher now (one I like a lot!) and I am still waiting for their response.

I have a lot of new readers this year who don’t know that in the spring of 2016 I had an Acquisitions Editor that wanted my book for the publisher she worked for, and she had told me she was pitching it to the editorial teams and marketing teams for a 2017 release and she would update me through the process. She didn’t update me and when I didn’t hear from her, I emailed to ask her for an update. The response I received was from someone I didn’t know, and they told me she had suddenly left them for another job with a different publisher and they knew nothing about me or my book.

In the past year, God has used my devotions to bring 33 people to salvation, and those 33 people are from 13 different countries! I pray there will be more who come to Jesus Christ through the message in my devotions.

I could use your help to recruit more people to visit and read my devotions and hopefully sign up to subscribe. Please spread the word and tell others about Devotions from the Heart.

Would you please pray for my writing and my book, and would you let me know if you would like me to pray for you?

Thank you so much for reading Devotions from the Heart!

Many Blessings, 

Kathy

August 16, 2017

At the End of the Day


At the end of the day when the day is done,

A good night’s sleep is calling your name.

You can already feel your head softly sinking into your pillow.

You slip that last plate in the dishwasher, wipe off the counter and turn off the kitchen light,

Night has come.

Was it a day walked well with the Lord?

Did you talk to Him and rejoice in knowing you are His?

Did you tell Him all your heart’s desires and trust they are safe in His care?

Did you cast all your worries into His hands, the big and the small and all the in between?

Did you trust Him with that fear that crept into your thoughts uninvited?

Did you acknowledge He is the one who knows what’s best?

At the end of the day when the day is done, was it a day walked well with the Lord?

Psalm 4:8
I will both lie down in peace, and sleep;
For You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.

Psalm 3:4-5
I cried to the Lord with my voice,
And He heard me from His holy hill. Selah
I lay down and slept;
I awoke, for the Lord sustained me.

August 13, 2017

Lifeless


It is that time in the hot summer season when flowers and plants show signs of the heat stress.

Leaves and blooms that have succumbed to the harsher temperatures turn brown around their edges.

Which is why I did some light pruning, not really pruning, but removing dying and dead blooms and a little trimming away of the more unsightly portions that I didn’t think would recover. I tried not to do too much because the plants can’t take a lot of pruning in the August heat.

After my TLC (tender loving care) I was pleased with the result. I cleaned up the mess I’d made and swept up the leaves and blooms that I had taken off.  Later I noticed I had missed a couple leaves while sweeping. It hadn’t been that long but they were already dry, shriveled, and lifeless. 

I was surprised at how quickly the life had drained completely out of those leaves.

You know where I am going with this. Need I say more than…

Apart from the life giving vine -

There is no life.

What a powerful reminder to take our spiritual growth seriously and to abide as Jesus taught us in John 15

John 15:4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.

August 9, 2017

Far From The Mark


My scripture flip calendar convicted me today as I read the daily verse, a powerful verse in 2 Corinthians. 

2 Corinthians 3:18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.

I paused with the flip calendar still in my hand meditating on the words of this single verse and thought about the work God does to transform me to the image of His Son Jesus.

Oh, I want to be transformed, I want to be more like Jesus.

There are days I can attest to the fact this work is genuinely underway and I know God is working on me and progress is being made on my part.

But today when I read that verse, all I could think was I am so far from the mark of where I should be.

I continue to stumble in areas where I know better, or should know better by now. 

I am re-learning lessons long learned but I regress.

Will I ever keep my tongue under guard as I should?

Why can’t my propensity to form quick and erroneous assumptions just stop?

When will my heart naturally overflow with love to everyone? Yes, even the ones we find hard to love…

I had to stop making this mental list of all my shortcomings and remind myself hope is not lost. God is working on me. That does not mean I will not have battles and struggles, but it does mean that if I offer myself to Him to actively work in my life, I will be changed. I will be transformed from glory to glory. 

Romans 12:1-2  
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.   And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

August 7, 2017

Staring Down My Faith

Near the end of the southernmost portion of the paved trail where I regularly walk is a clearing to the east where trees are thin and I can easily see the nearby train tracks as I pass by. While out for a walk this time, I wasn’t content in just passing by and peering through the trees, I decided that I wanted to take a picture of the railroad tracks. 

I made my way through the trees and climbed up the steep embankment to the railroad track. I stood there gazing down the path of the steel rails and it was as if my life stretched out before me down that long stretch of unending tracks with more questions than answers, but as I pondered all the questions, I yet again reminded myself that I know the answer is faith.
 

My life is a journey and it is traveled by faith. I might not always know where I am going, but I know I am going there by faith. 

A sudden outburst of laughter and chattering children broke my line of thinking, echoing from the walking trail below as a group rode by on their bikes. It was good to hear the sounds of a happy family outing.

When it was quiet again, I let my thoughts settle and wrap silently around me, thinking again of this gift of faith we are given. I had to admit to myself that sometimes I feel lost on this faith journey, and remembered the message in a couple of verses that gave me hope as I stood there staring down the unending tracks with more questions than answers. I know the answer is faith. 

2 Corinthians 5:7  For we walk by faith, not by sight.

Hebrews 11:8 By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place which he would receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going.


To read more about our journey and the uncertainties it often holds, the twists and turns that interrupt our dreams and goals, please read my post: When Life Doesn’t Track According to Plan at God-sized Dreams.