Category Archives: Lessons Along the Way

How sweet the sound indeed! GRACE… Could there possibly be a gift more amazing than this? What incredible GOOD NEWS we’ve been given to share! Still we hesitate. We wait for the right moment… the perfect words… as time slips quickly from our grasp. We hold onto this treasure in our feeble jars of clay… as the world waits.

The resurrection story reminds us that Jesus isn’t waiting for our perfection. He longs to fill and use these flawed jars of clay, just as He used the Peters and Thomases of the past.  Let’s rejoice and stand firm in our new identity bought for us by our Savior! Let’s not only stand, but RUN in His power and amazing grace to the mission God has for us!

“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.” ~ Ephesians 1:18-21


It was one year ago today that we opened a chapter in our story that would set us on a battlefield that would rock us to our core. The first page of that chapter began like this…

On Sunday morning, January 10th while we were with our church family at Calvary Chapel Rome, we were talking with a friend who was fresh out of med school. His fiancé, a med student, had noticed that Mike looked a little jaundice. That and the fact that Mike was experiencing some serious itchiness, prompted him to insist that we come with him to work the next morning because symptoms like that could indicate that his liver might not be functioning properly.

Early in the morning on January 11th, our friend met us at our apartment in Rome and drove us to the Anagnina station where we parked and took a subway into the Center of Rome. Then we caught a bus toward San Giovanni Hospital. Years ago we had spent the first night of our very first trip to Italy in a hotel just around the corner from the Basilica di San Giovanni in Laterano (a monumental cathedral commissioned by Constantine that was the first basilica built in Rome and for a thousand years it was considered the most important building in Christendom). Looking out the window of the bus, I reminisced about that first time Mike and I had explored the streets in this area. As we approached the hospital across the street from the famous cathedral and the largest standing ancient Egyptian obelisk in the world, I couldn’t help thinking about all the events that had led up to our living in this fascinating city.

While our friend led us through the ancient hospital, founded in 1204, a growing tide of apprehension began to engulf me. As soon as Mike was checked in he was taken to a waiting room exclusively for patients, while I was directed to the non-patient seating area of the main waiting room… and “wait” is what I did… hour after hour. Time always moves slowly in waiting rooms, but this day would make anything I might ever experience seem like a piece of cake! As the hours trudged on I was afraid to leave my designated area because I wanted Mike to know where to find me and I didn’t want to miss a call from the receptionist if they needed to tell me anything. I was wishing I had brought a water bottle, yet thankful that I hadn’t, because when I went to use the restroom, I found that the sliding door to the restroom was off it’s track and anyone in the entryway to the hospital could see right in. Never mind, I could wait.

Our friend finally came to the waiting room to tell me that a blood test had confirmed there was an issue with Mike’s liver and now we would need to wait for more tests and an available bed because it looked like Mike would need to stay there over night. It was beginning to sink in that this could not possibly be good.

I spent the day talking to my Savior, the only one in the room who spoke my language. Needless to say, everyone spoke Italian and it became painfully obvious that we did not. All the hours spent with our sweet Italian tutor, Tulia, as well as Rosetta Stone and weekly lessons at a nearby Italian library, had only prepared us for greetings, shopping and traveling, but at best only offered feeble attempts at real communication. Our friend from church spoke only a little English and I understood a little Italian, so part of our conversations always involved a bit of guesswork, sometimes even charades, but by the grace of God we were able to communicate the important things.

After twelve long hours, a bed became available and Mike was checked into a hospital room with four other men. We were escorted to his room after visiting hours, so I was ushered out as soon as he was settled in.

The hospital didn’t have Internet available, so I had to get busy when I got back home. There were so many people to call, text and message, that I was up most of the night (not that it mattered because I couldn’t have slept anyway). Our apartment seemed darker and colder and the background noise of the city seemed louder and more obnoxious than ever before. As I lay in our bed in the early morning hours, staring at the ceiling, pleading with the Lord for Mike to be ok, I asked the question that would become my question of the year for 2016. “What are You doing, God?… Why are You letting all this happen?”

His answer: “My grace is sufficient for you.”

I still don’t know all the whats and whys, but this is what I do know… God was with us the whole time… He taught us things we could not have learned any other way… He brought us divine appointments that we wouldn’t have had otherwise… He led us through the dark valleys, keeping us close when we couldn’t see… Shielding us from enemy attacks… Holding us up when we felt like we might drown… And ultimately, He brought us through to see an amazing victory!

Frankly, I can’t imagine how (or why) anyone would do this without Him! Believe me, if you don’t know Him, you really need to!

We spent this past year on the battlefield of cancer, fighting with prayer through a constant barrage of enemy assaults and hidden mine fields, but now here we are, with Mike in 2017! Last week at Mike’s follow up appointment His doctor said there is still no sign of cancer! I not only feel like I can finally breath… I feel like setting up a monument – a heap of stones that say, “Praise the Lord! Look at what God has done for us!”

Never Once

Standing on this mountaintop
Looking just how far we’ve come
Knowing that for every step
You were with us

Kneeling on this battle ground
Seeing just how much You’ve done
Knowing every victory
Was Your power in us

Scars and struggles on the way
But with joy our hearts can say
Yes, our hearts can say

Never once did we ever walk alone
Never once did You leave us on our own
You are faithful, God, You are faithful
Carried by Your constant grace

Held within Your perfect peace

Never once, no, we never walk alone

Every step we are breathing in Your grace

Evermore we’ll be breathing out Your praise

You are faithful, God, You are faithful!

Never Once By Jason Ingram, Matt Redman, Tim Wanstall

A year ago today we had no idea that 2016 would bring so many changes into our lives. We are so thankful to move into this New Year and put the past year behind us, but I also pray that we never forget the lessons we can learn from it. May we always remember just how quickly life can change and how uncertain the future can be. I pray that we always remember to forgive quickly, to let go of old baggage and learn to love each other more fiercely!



More often than not, healing, redemption and forgiveness, are found together in God’s Word, as if perhaps God meant for us to see them as one, unified work of His Spirit… As if perhaps He wants us to know that He is for us… completely… mind, body and soul.

“Bless the LORD, O my soul,

and all that is within me,

bless His holy name!

Bless the LORD, O my soul,

and forget not all his benefits,

who forgives all your iniquity,

who heals all your diseases,

who redeems your life from the pit,

who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,

who satisfies you with good

so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” ~ Psalm 103:1-5

“The blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them. And blessed is the one who is not offended by me. ~ Matthew 11:5-6

“Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders, if we are being examined today concerning a good deed done to a crippled man, by what means this man has been healed, let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by him this man is standing before you well. This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” ~ Acts 4:8-10

Throughout the Old Testament and into the New, God has used physical healings to bring about spiritual healing, to show us who He is and to verify His mission to the world.

There is no doubt in my mind that God has healed my husband in order to testify of His power and love, to the people I love and to the world He loves! He is using it to heal me in ways that I wasn’t even aware were broken – drawing me deeper into His presence – The only place where walls come down and defense mechanisms are swallowed in humility and victory.

We stand in awe of God’s power to heal diseases, and rightly so, but that’s not His end game. Our bodies are only temporary tents we inhabit for a very short time, but our souls are eternal and in desperate need of His forgiveness, redemption and healing.

Most of us can recite the Lord’s Prayer … “forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us…” But do we really take it to heart and apply it? Doesn’t it sound like He wants us to understand that forgiveness is a two-sided coin? We all want forgiveness… we all know we need it, but are we willing to ask for it? Are we willing to extend forgiveness to others? Have you ever faced a situation where you asked forgiveness from someone, only to receive silence or more condemnation in return? Forgiveness takes only a moment, but healing depends on it and true healing may take a lifetime. Especially since true forgiveness is two-sided. It requires the humility to ask for forgiveness, as well as the humility to extend forgiveness. Humility is a pretty elusive concept to most of us. We prefer to carry our hurts with us through life under a pretense of faux humility that is nothing more than pride manifesting itself as self-pity. We pack along our bag of offenses like a bag of stones that we’re ready to hurl at our offender in moments of anger. Then we justify ourselves at the expense of relationships that could be healed with God’s help and a good dose of humility. Humility certainly doesn’t come naturally to us, but it is available to us through the help of the Holy Spirit. In fact, humility is so essential that it was the means through which Jesus destroyed sin’s power over us as He paid for our forgiveness, healing and redemption.

“If then there is any encouragement in Christ, if any consolation of love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, fulfill my joy by thinking the same way, having the same love, sharing the same feelings, focusing on one goal. Do nothing out of rivalry or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves. Everyone should look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Make your own attitude that of Christ Jesus, who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God as something to be used for His own advantage. Instead He emptied Himself by assuming the form of a slave, taking on the likeness of men. And when He had come as a man in His external form, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death — even to death on a cross. For this reason God highly exalted Him and gave Him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow — of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth — and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” ~ Philippians 2:1-11

Our relationships require humility to survive. Our spiritual healing requires humility to accept our own guilt and humbly receive God’s free gift of forgiveness, healing and redemption.

Humility is also required to ask for and receive prayer, one of the most beautiful (and un-accessed) gifts that God has given us. When someone asks for prayer, they are saying, “I know I’m not enough, but I know that God is!” When someone offers to pray for me, they are giving me the most treasured gift any person can offer, because, for whatever reason, God has chosen to use prayer for the dispensing of His grace, encouragement, healing, forgiveness, redemption and power. We desperately need these gifts in our messed up world, and particularly in our messed up relationships.

Please humbly join us in prayer for healing, forgiveness and redemption… in our lives… in the lives of the people we love… in relationships… in our nation and the world.

The One Who Steadies

“When the earth and all its inhabitants shake,  I am the One who steadies its pillars.” ~ Psalm 75:3

I can remember where I was when it hit me… the crushing reality that took my breath away, sending convulsions through my stomach and piercing my heart with unspeakable grief.

A couple days earlier I had been in my high school english class, when our teacher asked us to choose a side. “Everyone who believes a woman has the right to choose when she has a family, come stand by this wall and anyone who believes that she shouldn’t be allowed the right to choose and that terminating a pregnancy should be illegal, stand against that wall.” Only two in my class of almost thirty students stood up for life. Sadly, I wasn’t one of them. The thought that someone my age could have all her hopes and dreams swept away by one foolish moment hardly seemed fair. It just seemed to make sense that a woman should be free to choose when to become a mother. But as I stood there with the crowd, something (or Someone) told me I was standing in the wrong place. I had never given any thought to the subject. Sure, I had heard about abortion, plenty of times, but usually in political terms and as a teenager, I wasn’t the least bit interested in politics. That sinking feeling that I was wrong compelled me to look into the subject.

As I sat alone in our family room looking out at the billowing clouds rolling over the beautiful North Idaho panorama that was my back yard, I futilely tried to hold back a stream of tears. Nothing could have prepared me for what I read about the process of ripping an infant from a mother’s womb. The reality of abortion hit me like an earthquake, shaking me to the core of my being. In that moment, as I sat grieving with my Holy Father,  I became a Pro-lifer.

Five years later, my husband Mike and I became parents and I felt for myself a tiny wiggly soul growing in my own womb. I certainly didn’t own her, nor was she part of my body, but as I carried her, she surely stole my heart! She was entrusted to us by our Heavenly Father. What an amazing honor and privilege to care for one of God’s greatest blessings! If people only knew! The reality of this little growing life fueled my passion to do whatever I could to help new mommies know the truth. But what could I do? I tried writing letters to the editor of the local paper, but on the rare occasion that one was published, it was so chopped up that it no longer sounded like the loving plea that I intended. After several years (and another blessing of a sweet baby boy) I finally gave up trying. Whenever I wrote about it, the pain in my heart overwhelmed me. My children needed a joyful mom, so I decided to leave this burden at the feet of Jesus and be prepared to speak the truth in love whenever He wanted me to.

Now thirty years later, we find ourselves in a fight for Mike’s life, along with a team of top notch doctors, nurses, friend and family encouragers, and hundreds of amazing prayer warriors. Again, I’m struck by how odd it is that we fight so hard and willingly go to so much expense to save one life and yet we so easily give up on the little ones who so desperately need us… just because we haven’t gotten to know them personally.

Voting for people who support pro-life policies is, without contest, the one issue closest to my heart in any election season. When I hear abortion statistics, my heart and stomach are sickened in much the same way as when I see the heaping piles of human beings in pictures of the holocaust. I am simply not convinced that anyone in the twenty-first century still believes we are merely aborting lumps of tissues. Biologists know the truth. Doctors and nurses know the truth. Anyone who has ever seen a video of an ultrasound knows the truth. When we de-value life on this level, we are sending a very loud message throughout our culture that life has no real value. This one issue absolutely does effect our society’s ethics on every level. Life becomes merely about self- gratification, self-indulgence and selfish choices because that’s the message we’re sending. Nothing is sacred anymore. Is it any wonder that materialism has become our god?.. that we would rather heap up wealth than give out of our abundance to help those in need?… that we’d rather pass the buck and say it’s the government’s responsibility to help the helpless, rather than helping them ourselves?… that so many feel like the world owes them a living and don’t value their families enough to support them?… that our only choices for the leaders of our country exemplify the self-centeredness that has become the stereotype of Americans the world over?

Yes, I do believe that this one issue may be the reason our nation is in such a mixed up, divided mess. So without hesitation, this is the most important issue that I look at in any election.

God is still the highest authority in our land (regardless of our puny opinions of Him or of what is most important to Him). He alone can steady the shaking pillars of our society! God help us… Please!

Real Life

“A man’s steps are established by the Lord, and He takes pleasure in his way. Though he falls, he will not be overwhelmed, because the Lord holds his hand.” ~ Psalm 37:23-24

I remember sitting with Mike in a psychologist’s office fifteen years ago as part of the Fred Hutch assessment process for bone marrow transplant patients. She made a comment that struck me as rather odd. She said, “Let’s get you through this so you can get back to your life.” I couldn’t help but wonder, “What is ‘this’ if it isn’t our life?” Our life had certainly taken a turn we didn’t expect, but like it or not, “this” was our life.

C.S. Lewis wrote, “The great thing, if one can, is to stop regarding all the unpleasant things as interruptions of one’s ‘own’, or ‘real’ life. The truth is of course that what one calls the interruptions are precisely one’s real life – the life God is sending one day by day: what one calls one’s ‘real life’ is a phantom of one’s own imagination.”

More often than not, life does not unfold as we planned. An unexpected reality jolts us awake and we realize that this body we inhabit will only house us for a very short time. I used to think “the valley of the shadow of death” in the twenty-third Psalm referred to a season of sickness or fear that someone might pass through briefly, but the reality is that this Valley of the shadow of death is where we all live out our “real” lives. Being aware of this reality should help us to live and love with intentionality, while wisely preparing for eternity. David wrote in Psalm 39:5-7, “LORD, reveal to me the end of my life and the number of my days. Let me know how short-lived I am. You, indeed, have made my days short in length, and my life span as nothing in Your sight. Yes, every mortal man is only a vapor. Certainly, man walks about like a mere shadow. Indeed, they frantically rush around in vain, gathering possessions without knowing who will get them. Now, Lord, what do I wait for? My hope is in You.”

Our hope is most definitely in the Lord as we adjust to our “real life” with Mike’s stage three adenocarcinoma pancreatic cancer! We may be facing many challenges and uncertainties, but one thing we know for certain, our God is for us and He’s given us so much to be thankful for! We have a wonderful family and many awesome friends and prayer warriors all over the world! Our flights back to the states were relatively smooth with minimal turbulence. We were even able to stretch out in business class as we flew over the big pond. Then we were blessed to spend several days with our daughter’s family and four of our grandchildren before returning home. As we settle back into our house in Washington, we find ourselves very thankful that the Lord didn’t supply the renters that we had been praying for! (Which seemed puzzling to us at the time, but now it makes perfect sense.) Just another reminder that trusting the Lord to write our life story is the best decision we’ve ever made! Only He can see the big picture and know how best to answer our prayers!

“Commit your way to the Lord; trust Him, and He will act.” – Psalm 37: 5

“Be silent before the Lord and wait expectantly for Him.”  – Psalm 37: 7


Looking Up

We love living and serving in Rome! Who wouldn’t? Right? We’ve been blessed beyond measure as we’ve watched the Lord pull everything together to bring us here. We know we are in the center of His will and feel right at home with our new church family at CC Roma. Yet, we left a big part of our heart back in the States… The part that belongs to our family. We were so blessed to spend lots of quality time with our children and grandchildren this summer while we were wedding hopping back in the States! But then came the goodbyes. When our youngest granddaughter said, “Bye-bye Ma-mah”, like we might see each other in just a few minutes, I had to turn around so they wouldn’t see my struggle to hold back the tears. The next time I see her, she’ll probably be able to pronounce “grandma”. We’ll miss their birthdays, programs and holidays, their hugs and spontaneous visits. They will grow on without us and we will continue to “Look Up” to the One who holds our tomorrows and holds all our hearts together.

Last spring, after we had been in Rome for a couple months (long enough for the newness and excitement to wear off) we even started to miss the little things that we left behind, like cool quiet nights, green manicured lawns and clean sidewalks. We don’t live in the postcard Rome, we live in Tor Bella Monaca, the most impoverished zone in Rome. And I confess, all the graffiti and garbage were beginning to steal my joy. So I started to pray about it (the kind of prayers that David prayed when he was in the pits, the desparate kind that can easily be confused with whining). Thankfully, the Lord reminded me to “Look Up!” It’s always such good advice to look up and put your focus on the Lord. I started reading and re-reading the Songs of Accent (Psalms 120-134) and let the hope in His Word wash over me like rain on a parched desert. ” I call on the LORD in my distress, and he answers me.” ~ Psalm 120:1DSC05269

“I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.” ~ Psalm 121:1

Dark graffitti in Tor Bella Monaca

” I lift up my eyes to you, to you who sit enthroned in heaven.” ~ Psalm 123:1


Then, while we were walking along, dodging litter, the Lord again, whispered the words, “Look Up”, and I realized He also meant it literally. I raised my gaze above the graffiti covered cement walls to see beautiful green trees laden with flowers, lemons and a variety of new fruit. You’ve gotta love new fruit (especially the hard-to-grow varieties)! God sure has His work cut out for Him when He wants to produce new fruit in His whiny children!

Our top five Prayer Requests

Our number one prayer request… Lord, teach us to be content with our heart in two places! Grow your fruit in our lives and in our family as You grow our faith in You. “Those who sow with tears will reap with songs of joy. Those who go out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with them.” ~ Psalm 126:5-6

We were blessed to spend the last two weeks at Calvary Chapel’s Conference Center in Austria. One week was spent at the European Missions Conference, followed by our CC Roma Conference. Please pray for lasting fruit for all who attended each conference.



Please pray for divine inspiration in the writing and artwork for our ongoing Children’s Curriculum project.  Pray also for our Children’s Ministry Team, the students and the start of our new Sunday School year this month.

Please pray for hearts to be receptive to the good news, for the salvation of our neighbors and all the people God brings across our path.

Please pray for continued progress in our language acquisition (in both the Italian language and the stronger language of love)!


That’s the Gospel!

Rome  2012 071

“Who is a God like You, removing iniquity and passing over rebellion for the remnant of His inheritance? He does not hold on to His anger forever, because He delights in faithful love. He will again have compassion on us; He will vanquish our iniquities. You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea.” ~Micah 7:18-19

“Qual Dio è come te, che perdoni l’iniquità e passi sopra la trasgressione del residuo della tua eredità? Egli non serba l’ira sua in perpetuo, perché si compiace d’usar misericordia. Egli tornerà ad aver pietà di noi, si metterà sotto i piedi le nostre iniquità, e getterà nel fondo del mare tutti i nostri peccati.”

I love the phrase, “He will vanquish our iniquities”! Now that’s Good News! It speaks of my All-powerful Savior dealing the enemy of our soul a mighty blow. In the conversation about “religion” this is the heart of the matter. This sets Christianity apart from every other religion. Followers of false religions try to appease their god by doing “good” works or earn his favor by committing insane actions prescribed by their religion. The Almighty God of the Bible does all the work Himself.

The term “Christian” is misappropriated so often that I think many are confused about what it really means. A “Christian” is someone whose heart was touched by a glimpse of amazing, authentic, LOVE… a love so compelling, they had to move closer to get a better look, but as they tried, the pure light and truth of God’s character revealed the stain and stench of their own sin and they realized it created an impenetrable barrier, dividing them from His perfect presence. They couldn’t move into His arms unless it was dealt with. Confronted with His honesty, they realized that there was nothing they could do to remove it on their own… confronted with His holiness, they knew their good works were only filthy rags. Then someone told them about the cross and the LOVE that sacrificed everything to vanquish their sin and tear down that wall. Jesus willingly paid the penalty for our rebellion against God so we can enter into His light and be embraced as God’s children.

A Christian is not one who is perfect… A Christian is simply someone who has embraced the pure Love of Jesus Christ! His perfect love changes everything and they know that it’s a done deal! That’s the Gospel!

Watch and Pray


Shortly after Peter swore his allegiance to Jesus, saying, “Even if I must die with you, I will not deny you!” Jesus finds him sleeping.

“And he said to Peter, “So, could you not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” (Mark 26:40-41)

Peter’s problem: Over confidence in himself made him sleepy (listless, intoxicated, unconscious, vulnerable) and completely unaware of his great need! We all like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way. It’s such a subtle deception, this sense of independence that overrides common sense of our complete dependence on God. Peter believed he was ready for any battle, but his confidence was misplaced. Our pride makes us easy targets for the enemy of our soul, especially when we feel like we’re at the top of our game. We’ve spent time with the Master, we’ve been in training, we’ve studied, we know our call… we’ve got this! Our Lord’s response: “Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

Everything done in our flesh is always weak! A good dose of “watch and pray” is our prescription. If only Peter (if only we) would simply follow Jesus instructions (and His example) by dropping to our knees in complete dependence, admitting, “I don’t know if I can do this, nevertheless, not my will, but Your will be done.” Peter’s story may have been written differently if he had listened. Thankfully, the author of our story isn’t surprised by our weakness and can even turn our failings into lessons!

Our spirit is indeed willing, but our flesh is weak and needs to listen as His voice says, “Watch and pray – Then come with me, not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord Almighty!”

WOOHOO! Our Waiting May Be Coming to a Close!

We’ve finally gathered all the necessary paperwork to apply for our visas! We have an appointment at the Italian Consulate office in Seattle next Tuesday. Please pray for grace and favor in our interview, as well as travel mercies as we drive over the pass. Please also pray that God will make it clear to us what day we should set as our departure date.

While all this waiting has been difficult, I’m so grateful for God’s grace in allowing us to be here longer than we anticipated. Over the past couple months (months we thought we’d be in Italy) we’ve been so blessed! By being here, we were able to get acquainted with our son’s lovely girlfriend; we’ve made many wonderful memories with our grandchildren; I’ve enjoyed an extended (and much needed) season of rest after working a 60-hour week job and now it looks like we may even get to spend Christmas with our family! God’s plans always work out so much better than our own! I’ve learned this so many times, I’m not sure why I get so frustrated and fidgety in the waiting seasons that come my way.

One of the Hebrew words most often translated “wait “ is “qavah” which can mean “to look patiently”, “to hope expectantly” or “look eagerly”. Another is the word “yachal” and is sometimes translated as “trust” or “wait in hope”. A third is “daman” which means to “rest”, “grow silent” or “be still” and a fourth is the word “chakah” which means to “long for”.

I do love the “longing for”, anticipation phase of planning a trip. I truly enjoy the season of “looking eagerly forward” to Christmas even more than Christmas Day itself.  And “rest”, I REALLY like that concept! My prayer is that I’ll remember these lessons and joyfully embrace the next waiting season that God brings into my life! In the mean time I want to jump and shout, “WOOHOO!” because it looks like this one may finally be coming to a close!

“They that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” ~ Isaiah 40:31