When Words Fail Me - A Guest Post by Josie Siler

Although I’m a writer, I can’t seem to find the right words to describe God’s creation. It’s magnificent, splendid, brilliant, outstanding, stunning, grand, impressive, unparalleled, unique, supreme, glorious, and so much more.

God’s handiwork is indescribable. That’s why I take pictures! Through photography I can show others small glimpses of the glory of God. Romans 1:20 (NLT) says, “For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.” We learn things about God and get to know Him through the things He has made. 

 

 

Photography, God’s creation, nature, chronic illness, Broken but Priceless Ministries, Josie Siler, When Words Fail Me, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Don't Quit

Today as I design our August issue of Refresh, I want to share with you a poem that’s helped me. Written by Jill Wolf, it’s an encouragement to keep going and keep trying.

What assignment has God given you to do? Don’t stop short of completing it.

What amazing good is God working in your life? Don’t give up on the process.

What blessings can you give to those around you? Don’t rob them of a surprise joy.

What promises are you waiting on God to fulfill? Don’t be afraid they won’t happen.

Keep trusting, keep working, and keep waiting.

 

 

endurance, commitment, Don't Quit, Jill Wolf, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

The Healing

The ache I’ve felt in my soul
The desire to be made whole
The longings that have gone unmet
The pain I want to forget

A Healer I’ve needed and prayed for
The Calmer of the stormy roar
My Hero in difficult battles
The Releaser of chains and shackles

 

 

Pain, anguish, depression, adversity, healing, The Healing, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Responding to Fear and Disorder

Disorder and violence seem predominant in the news today, and we can be tempted to fear what will happen next. I heard the following message online recently, and it encouraged me greatly. Below are some of the notes I took. May they bless you in these uncertain days.

How To Respond in Times of Fear and Disorder
by Johnnie Moore  (speaking at Shadow Mountain Community Church in El Cajon, California)

Our fear must be kept subservient to our faith.
Fear causes us to only see the problem, and it blinds us to an opportunity for God.
We fear so much because our faith is so little.
Christians aren’t people of fear. ...

 

fear, disorder, response, faith, God, church, Johnnie Moore, Shadow Mountain Community Church, Beebe Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Saying No to the Wolf

   I met my first wolf as a preteen visiting the city zoo in Paris, France. He was black, and I think he liked me. As I walked back and forth in front of his fenced habitat taking pictures of the wolves, he followed me. Head down. I got a kick out of this and started walking faster back and forth in front of him, hoping he would keep following me. He did. My mom called out for me to stop. I think she was wiser than I.

   Not too long after that, I encountered a different wolf. As a teenager, I began having tormenting, negative thoughts. After a while, my mom realized they were coming from a spiritual enemy. They hounded me until I understood they were based on lies and I could say no to them. It worked, and that wolf left.

   About fifteen years later, another wolf hounded me. In my late twenties, I experienced a spiritual battle that topped all of the others. 

 

 

spiritual battles, depression, Breaking the Chains series, Say No to the Wolf, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Free to Bloom

I bought them on faith. Back in April, beautiful tulips called to me as I approached the self-checkout at Kroger. I love to smell the flowers that grace grocery stores. If I can smell their sweet scent, I have to restrain myself not to buy them. I had to see if these tulips smelled good. They did.

I noticed that some had already bloomed. They were a gorgeous hot pink with white edges. Other bunches had partly opened blooms. So I went for one of those sets. Although the “sell buy” date on the sticker told me that maybe I shouldn’t spend three dollars to take them home, I hoped that they would bloom eventually and live longer than the already bloomed flowers.  I believed in what they could become.

 

 

hope, renewal, growth, burdens, worry, God’s grace, Free to Bloom, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

The Confession

In the stillness of the night You hear my cry

You know the battle in my soul

I give the fight all I have and try

To bear the rigorous toll

 

You embrace me in my weakest moment

You remind me of Your great love

In my daily predicament

I know I have help from up above

 

 

adversity, trials, hope, faith, God's faithfulness, peace, fear, anxiety, brokenness, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Breaking the Chains: Overcoming Legalism

Racing in a potato sack is an awkward feeling. Any burst of energy and a zeal to win must be harnessed, because if you try to run in a potato sack … splat. Down you go.  

At Field Day in elementary school, I learned what it felt like to move hindered. Bound. It wasn’t possible to run free like the wind. If I moved forward, I had to hold the potato sack at my waist and hop. And if I fell, I went down confined in my sack. Claustrophobic. I couldn’t wait to get out of that sack.

When we hold on to legalism, we move through life hindered. Bound. Our hearts may find security in adhering to rules, but we miss out on the freedom of focusing on a relationship with God. When we operate in life like God intended His children to, we can run like the wind. 

 

 

legalism, spiritual bondage, Galatians, Breaking the Chains: Overcoming Legalism, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Breaking the Chains: Escaping the Rut

Bad habits are like deep ruts that are hard to get out of. As we navigate our way through life, we may find ourselves traveling in an inescapable rut. Ruts can ruin our godliness, our relationships, and our spiritual health and strength. They can damage our joy, peace, and even our sanity. The more we say yes to these bad habits, the deeper the rut becomes. So how can we break free?

 

 

breaking bad habits, spiritual bondage, freedom, Breaking the Chains: Escaping the Rut, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Pages