209 ~ I Was Afraid is No Excuse!

209 – I Was Afraid is No Excuse!

September 20, 1986

Matthew 25 contains the parable of the talents:

The servant says: Lord, I knew you to be a hard man…and I was afraid, and went and hid your talent…. 24-25

For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have in abundance…. 29

I see this means that God has given each of us talents to use for His purposes and His glory, but fear and self-consciousness, mixed in with laziness and distractibility wreak havoc on good His plans.

Oswald Chambers in My Utmost for His Highest, p 111, says: Never say, I can’t. Never let limitation or natural ability come in. If we have received the Holy Spirit, God expects the work of the Holy Spirit to be manifested in us!

My prayer:

Holy Spirit, Your conviction is so penetrating. I am undone, humbled. There is no argument, no self-justification of inability which can stand against You and Your call.

You have been raising my self-esteem (actually my identity of who I am in Christ) so that I could receive this word today. You have been working Your word and Your presence into me, so that my self-esteem is tied with you and who YOU ARE and not who I am.

Impart, I ask in Jesus’ name, the WISDOM I need, the LOVE I need, the PEACE I need.


I rebuke FEAR in Jesus’ name.

I am seeing that most of the fear is an excuse from my lazy nature—if I cover myself with fear, surely He’ll see and not ask any more of me because I am already so overloaded! Deceitful heart—be quiet!!

208 ~ Glorious Times

208 – Glorious Times

September 20, 1986

Yesterday God called me apart!

I walked at noon toward the school but then turned and walked up the hill and into a field of waist-high wildflowers: yellow and purple. Bordering the field on one end were deciduous trees of every changing color. On my left, a quaint old red-brown farm house. I stood in the rain under my little blue Japanese umbrella and read Galatians in my Phillip’s pocket Bible. I had been needy, crying out to God. Through Galatians he reaffirmed:

* do not hold man’s approval in high regard—only God’s approval

*you are not under the law but under grace

* your righteousness is not of the law by your good deeds, but by faith in Jesus Christ

* walk in faith

It was a glorious time.

Dan wanted me to go to Elim to the prayer meeting. So I did. I’m often hesitant to go out on my own, especially driving the country roads at night.

As I drove on campus to the meeting, Tracey Belcastro had just pulled in. We walked together and sat together with her husband and interceded together and talked afterwards. She is a person I have been wanting to know. We have agreed to be prayer partners. God is gracious.

God lifted me through worship and then blessed me with a new release of my prayer language in intercessory prayer. He is so precious.

On Friday, God touched me in an interesting way: In prayer before the home school meeting, feeling desperate for peace in place of anxiety, I felt a sensation on my head just back from my hairline moving from the right temple area, across to the left. Hmmmm. At the meeting I was freer to be me than I have been in ages—with no second thoughts or deep introspection. Praise Jesus.

207 ~ Be Selfish or Serve Others

207 – Be Selfish or Serve Others

September 6, 1986

I have become so disgusted with myself—and while repenting and broken I came upon the book by Charles Swindoll, Improving Your Serve-The Art of Unselfish Living.

I have been here before, and I am here again. Self-centered.

I’m too concerned with ME, my shower, my letters home, my Bible study, my nerves, my image, my mouth—and I have been becoming angry over so much waiting, my imperfection, kids’ imperfection, etc. Unwilling to make the real sacrifices in time (up early) and attitude with a cheerful heart.

But Lord help me to be more willing to die to myself and to be a servant. Like my husband. But especially like You. Dan is looking to You, looking to serve You. I want to, too.

Matthew 20: 25a, 28 But Jesus called them to Himself, and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them… just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

1 Peter 5:2a Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly…

Thank You that You give me attitude adjustments and do not leave me to myself. There is ALWAYS hope in Christ my Lord.

206 ~ Release and Cleansing

206 – Release and Cleansing

Sept 1, 1986

This is rewritten from a long entry in my journal:

Last week I had asked Dan to pray that if God had something to show me He would. Then yesterday at church at Elim, Brother Edwards, the president of the school, spoke of the spiritual renewal he had received over the summer break. He believed that on this day there was an anointing for liberation from bondage to sin and from past crippling memories.

The Lord brought to mind some incidents in my life as a young child that made me feel dirty every time I thought of them. I joined the scores of people filing forward to the front of the church. The prayer was a release from bondage into the wholeness of Christ.

Today in my regular devotions in Leviticus 18, I read about specific awful sins and how sin has the inevitable result of cutting us off from the people we love, and from the Lord.

Hebrews 8:12 For I will be merciful to their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more.

Hebrews 9:13 For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling those who have been defiled, sanctify for the cleansing of the flesh, how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God. 

Praise God Praise God Praise God Praise God Praise God Praise God Praise God Praise God

Now all gifts, blessings, fruits, life, fullness of the Spirit I receive from my God, from the Holy Spirit. I receive this revelation of the Word and feel spiritually prepared for the class I am beginning tomorrow night on campus. I receive release from illness and courage to lead these boys into relationship with Christ and into the rest of their lives.

My extended devotional time took place between 2-3:30 while Daniel was napping and TSM were at the neighbors. Dan came home at 4:30. I got to go out on errands till 6, so I got a real break today—Thank You, Jesus!

205 ~ Sweets and Prayers and Horses with Hairy Angles

205 – Sweets and Prayers

and Horses with Hairy Ankles

August 13, 1986

The boys missed the party and movie over at the school . It was the culmination of the summer program and I just wasn’t excited about them going and told Dan that.

They accepted our ‘no’ beautifully. Praise God. We decided to have our own party of popcorn, peanut butter cookies, and a piece of candy. We walked along Big Tree Street counting the trees near the road (61) not the ones in people’s yards.. We visited the Pletcher’s, and came home to watch Chris for 1 ½ hours while Leslie had some business to attend to. All four boys consider him their best friend and he is kind and gracious to all of them. He’s a mature only child.

August 14

Yesterday I overdosed on sugar. The after affects were the usual:


-anxiety, irritability

-craving for more

-slight headache

The adverse side-effects always get me back on the no sugar wagon–at least for a while!! I’ve got to make a break.

August 15

Yesterday, Thursday, at 10am Daniel wanted to be held, he was very fussy. I decided to sit in the rocker and hold him and pray. He fell asleep and took an early nap, but I was able to intercede for a while. I had no idea for whom I was praying, but I just asked God to intervene.

Today I got a letter from Jan, written last week, that Kyle was having surgery at noon on Thursday–but then I got a call from Janet and she said Kyle had the surgery at 10am our time!! and that it had been a great success.


I trusted You and went to the Clydesdale exhibit with the neighbors. I didn’t really want to go, but the kids did. My kids were so patient and uncomplaining. Hers were awful and complaining loudly. Embarrassingly so. 

The next day she came over to ask what I used to spank them with and about the chores the kids do!!

204 ~ A Continual Choice

204 – A Continual Choice

July 25, 1986

Leslie came over and talked some more. Her deceased husband was a troubled soul, she said. She and Chris (her son) are devastated. May You guard my mouth at all times by giving me wisdom and discernment, Lord!

I called the Superintendent’s office and got him! I explained yesterday’s last-minute cancellation. He sounded compassionate. But he also seemed stern and businesslike.

July 30

Depression and fear have been hovering around me because it feels like the Superintendent holds power over me!

I realized on my walk that I can embrace God and walk with Him or I can choose an anxious and negative attitude and darkness.

Today I will meet with the Superintendent at 9am.

I have been reading daily in Exodus. Then on Sunday at church I was convicted of not being in the Word enough, so I decided to read daily in the New Testament as well.

This morning I got:

1 Peter:13 Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority…

 15 for such is the will of God that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men.

Romans 13:1 Every person is to be in subjection to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God.

These verses enabled me to be humble and submissive during the important meeting, not defensive and afraid. I will trust that You will use this man and his position for the best course we are to take.

Lord, that was amazing that I got those two verses on this exact day without having any other purpose but to hear Your voice. Amazing!

Thank You for reminding me of Your viewpoint about the world’s structure and my place in it! Thank You that I am able to hear you speak and by Your grace follow Your leading!

203 ~ A Tragic Interruption in Life

203 ~ A Tragic Interruption in Life

July 24, 1986

For months I had been worried about what the requirements would be to homeschool in Livonia. And when I met the lady yesterday who had been taken to court regarding homeschooling, I had been shocked and very concerned. Her personality was very outgoing and bold. My goal in homeschooling has always been to quietly do my thing and not attract any undue attention.

I had made an appointment with the superintendent of schools to present my case for teaching the boys at home. I had decided to tell him that we were expecting to be missionary candidates and we would be probably teaching our children overseas.

The appointment was today.

I prayed in the Spirit almost my entire 35 minute walk.

And then I found out that Leslie’s husband committed suicide last night. And everything stopped.

Leslie came over to talk.

I cancelled my appointment.

I thanked God for moving us here, for Leslie’s son being best friends with my sons, for the few times we had visited in the past couple of weeks so that we had built a relationship of friendship and trust. I mostly listened. I had no idea if he had made his peace with God so I could not broach that subject. She appreciated a listening ear.

Death is a tragic interruption in life.

202 ~ I Threw Myself On the Lord

202 – I Threw Myself On the Lord

July 18, 1986

During my early morning walk I prayed to be able to have discernment about the enemy and have victory over my flesh when I find myself rising up and taking the enemy’s bait! And did I ever need that prayer….

The boys were across the street hanging out with their friends. Dan and I went to Beulah’s to pick up the kids so we could take them to the 4-H meeting. The ladies were gossiping, actually slandering someone. Praise God I kept out of it.

Then at the school where the meeting was, I became fearful and angry about something.

Then after we got home, sorrow came upon me because I had no car to use to get Dan a birthday gift.

Then disgust because the flour canister had a huge ant in it so I could not bake for him.

I THREW MYSELF ON THE LORD, making sure the boys were well occupied in the playroom.

Loneliness and lack of control over my life, overwhelmed me.

I almost called Karen for prayer support, because I don’t even have a prayer partner here! –amazingly, restraint came because it would have been a very unwise use of money.

BUT GOD SAVED ME! without my calling anyone.

Peace came from God. My problems disappeared. We (the boys and I) would accept what we could not change and make do.

Then my mom called! GLORY!

Then my neighbor, Janet, came over and offered me her car!!

So I piled the boys in to the car and we went to the store and bought what we needed.

I had a major personal victory, and God worked mightily on my behalf! BLESS YOU, LORD!

The impact: self pity, a victim spirit, fearfulness, anger, loneliness, overwhelmingness—none of those things interfere with my relationship with the Lord if I just turn to Him and throw myself on His always-available mercy and grace.

So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. Hebrews 4:16