Dear Daughter, Come share your heart with me

“Daddy, look at this puppy!”

Every night, my daughter would crawl up in her daddy’s lap, and talk to him about her biggest wish, the dream in her heart – getting a puppy. She would show him pictures of puppy after puppy on his phone.

Like seriously, every night. For two years. 

Never, not once, did her daddy roll his eyes in annoyance that she was asking…yet again. Quite the opposite, actually: he revelled in her asking. He got excited with her over all those adorable fluffy fur balls. He hung on her every word about what she liked about each one, what she might name them, and if she should get a boy or a girl.

I sat at a distance, watching and wondering why that man was entertaining this wild idea about her getting a dog! Everybody knows that mama is the one who ends up taking care of every living creature in the house and I was not on board!

This father/daughter interaction struck a chord in me as it relates to prayer. She ran to him, daily, with this deep desire in her heart. Daily this daddy opened his arms wide, delighting in her asking. He didn’t grant her wish immediately, like a genie. He was a wise, good father (and husband) to not say yes right off the bat and give in to her fantasy whim the first time she asked.

Imagine all the precious hours of connection they would have missed out on had he done that! All the minutes she had crawled up in his lap, rested her head against his chest, called him daddy, and shared her deepest dreams of doggie love with him would never have happened.

He was listening. He was enjoying spending time with his daughter. 

Watching them made me want to run to my Abba Father with my “childlike faith” big dreams that seem unrealistic. Do you have some of those, too, friend? Sometimes in the light of day, they seem unreasonable to ask for. Yet we know from scripture that this childlike faith is the kind of faith our daddy in heaven wants us to have.

I don’t know about you, but I have trouble keeping the persistence and passion in my prayer life with The Father that my daughter had with her father. Yet it’s evident in scripture that RELATIONSHIP is what God’s after in prayer. It’s the relentless running to your daddy and resting you head on his chest, asking and talking to Him that He desires.

Dear Daughter, 

 When you pray, come away with me. Shut the door behind you, and pray to me, your Father in private. Then your Father, who sees everything, will reward you. When you pray, don’t babble on about what you think sounds good and religious. I know exactly what you need even before you ask me! (Adapted from Matthew 6:6-8)

Even though I know what you need, even what you desire, I want you to take hold of this opportunity Jesus gave you to have relationship with me. Pour your heart out to me, and let’s sift through it together. 

I just want to spend time with you.

Love,

Father.

Because he bends down to listen,  I will pray as long as I have breath!” Psalm 116:2

Dear Sister, 

You are probably wondering, did she get the dog?

As I mentioned the mom in this story was lovingly watching their snuggles and daddy’s delight in his daughter, but I was a firm NO in the dog department. Well, daddy was out of town on a trip, and I taught the kids a lesson on prayer journaling. I told them to just “pour their heart out to the Lord in your journal.” Whatever is in your heart: your desires, frustrations, your uncertainties. Thank Him for what he has done. Ask Him for what you need. I read Hannah’s prayer for a son to them from 1 Samuel 1.

“Oh no, sir!” she replied. “I haven’t been drinking wine or anything stronger. But I am very discouraged, and I was pouring out my heart to the Lord.” 1 Samuel 1:15

Obviously, this prayer for “a son” translated to “prayer for a puppy” in our daughter’s mind and heart!

The daughter in her, who had been running to her earthly daddy and asking for a puppy, ran to her Heavenly Father and began asking Him for a puppy.

We are now the proud owners of a Malshi (Maltese/Shitzu) name Millie.

Sister, this week, let the daughter in you run to your Father like a daughter who is crawling in her daddy’s lap asking for a puppy. He will not turn you away. He will not roll his eyes that you’re asking for the same thing, yet again. He may not grant your desire, but He will become your desire. He will satisfy the longing in your heart until he either fulfills it or gives you peace over it.

He is the only true need you have. Just run to him, daughter.

I hope this Dear Daughter Monday Motivation letter has inspired you for the week ahead!

If it has, I’d love to hear from you about it!

Please share it with a friend.

See you next Monday, daughter.

Amy

P.S. Get this Monday Motivation direct in your email box by subscribing to my email list in the pop up box.

Plus, you’ll get a FREE Bloom Journal!

 

 

Join our BLOOM Online Study!

Do you need to grow in your awareness of God’s love for you?

Could you use encouragement to entrust your worries to Jesus?

Would accountability to read and meditate on God’s Word daily be helpful to you?

If so, THIS is for YOU! June 3rd- June 30th, I will be hosting a FREE online Bible Study, titled “BLOOM” that will be perfect for your summer schedule. We will prayerfully study and meditate on one verse of scripture a day.

The devotion plan is built upon Paul’s prayer for spiritual growth in Ephesians 3:


“Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.” Ephesians 3:17

 

I’ve created a simple devotional plan to help you prayerfully study the scripture and grow in your relationship with Jesus. It’s based on the acronym “BLOOM.” (See image below:

We will be walking through two passages of scripture from Ephesians 3 and Matthew 13.

To join the study, just subscribe to my email list (in the pop up box on this website!) and download the Scripture Plan for FREE!

Then join our private Facebook Group where I’ll be doing some Facebook Live talks and the posting daily verses for discussion.

I created these printable BLOOM journals for FREE! They have the verse of the day and the devotion plan all laid out for you to just grab your pen and grow with God.

Make sure you subscribe to my email list in the pop up box above!

I hope you’ll join us and BLOOM in June!

Praying for you,

Amy

BLOOM in His Love :: 3 Steps to a Growing Faith

“I’m doing this because I love you…’

My daughter didn’t seem moved and continued to complain about having to work on memorizing her multiplication facts over the summer.

“Honey, if I didn’t care, I would just let you wake up, watch tv, and do nothing all summer. But, I know what’s coming in fourth grade math. If you aren’t automatic in these facts, it’s going to take you twice as long to do your work everyday. Trust me.”

Her face started to soften as she could hear the compassion and wisdom in my voice. A willing spirit SLOWLY began emerging and she softened to the thought of a little math over the summer.

She trusted my reasoning, even though she would rather totally chill and forget math for the next three months.

Ladies, don’t we push back at The Lord’s guidance like this?

He sees the next season and knows what we need to bloom there. 

and

He loves us.

Unlike me, the sinful, human parent, wanting what’s best for my child, He’s the perfectly loving Father, knowing what’s best for His child.

If we could just get that the next time we question His love, question why this is happening, everything would shift in us.

I am convinced, if we grow in knowing His love for us, we will grow in our faith in every way.

Paul convinced me in Ephesians 3.

“Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.” Ephesians 3:17 NLT

Friends, we want our roots – our belief system – to grown down into the reality of His love for us in every situation. In my life, I see examples in three levels of faith crises: everyday messes, more serious stresses, and fear.

Everyday messes:  when we are stressed because the dog peed on the floor, the kids are arguing and the house is a wreck. (Or if your’e nine -Mom making you memorize math over the summer 😉

More serious stresses: Things that are causing lasting anxiety and worry. This could be wrapped up in money or making big decisions.

Fear: This faith crisis usually occurs when you realize you are absolutely not in control, and you are having trouble trusting The One who is. For me, it is often wrapped up in a health scare or uncertainty in my future.

Think of a situation you’ve been in lately where you just totally temporarily forgot God loves you and He’s got you. In that moment, you experienced a doubt of His love, His goodness, His mercy, forgiveness, and His peace. We’ve all  been there. We all experience real life. Jesus told us we would:

I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

In this series, Bloom in His Love, we are going to walk through how to grow and blossom  in our faith when we are in danger of withering and shrinking back in frustration and fear. We will learn to do three things to ensure we don’t just survive, but that we thrive. We want to take the opportunity set before us and become like a tree planted by His stream of living water, bearing fruit in every season, with strong roots that don’t just hold our faith secure, but strengthen the faith of those around us, amen?

So here’s the three things we need to BLOOM: 
1. Check our Soil

2. Weed 

3. Water 

But before we do that, assess what level of BLOOMING you’re at

Blossoms abound- I am in a season of praising God, experincing His love and thanking Him for all I see Him doing, even the frustrating hard things, I can see his hand in and I trust He’s working all things together for good.

Weeds popping up- I know The Lord loves me, but I’m praying the same things over and over and feeling stuck instead of trusting and waiting. I’m a little nervous about a few things and overanalyzing a my situations.

Need water! Withering – I have to be honest, I’m in a hard season. There’s been one struggle after another. I want to believe God is good and He loves me, but I’m having a hard time walking in that right now.

Which one of these conditions do you feel your heart in right now? Let me encourage you, we have all been in all of theses conditions. The good news is, like Paul says in Ephesians, we can simply let our roots grow down into His love, and we be strengthened in our faith. I’m here to help you! Next week, I’ll walk us through how to grow in an awareness God’s amazing love for us. It’s the most transformation thing I’ve ever experienced.

What do you think, friend – what stage of BLOOMING are you in right now?

Are you blossoming in faith? Need some weeding? Needs some watering?

His love is the cure.

I have a free printable for you below:: 3 Steps and Scriptures to help you BLOOM:

BLOOM

Print it out, post it where you can see it, memorize the WORD and BLOOM!

I’ll have more next week on checking the soil we’re planted in!

If this email has been encouraging, make sure to subscribe to my newsletter (in the pop up box) and receive a FREE 28 Day Bloom Devotional Journal!

Amy

 

God and Me: Pouring Your Heart out to the Lord

“I was pouring out my heart to the Lord.”

‭‭1 Samuel‬ ‭1:15‬ ‭NLT‬‬

We all have something stirring in our heartswhether a praise, an uncertainty, a fear, an unmet desire, or a frustration – something – going on inside of us.

For Hannah in 1 Samuel 1, it was the frustration of having no children. The Lord has closed her womb. She was frustrated, annoyed, and being ridiculed by her husband’s other wife who had children.

Hannah didn’t harden her heart against The Lord in her plight. Instead, she kept her heart soft toward Him and knew He was still good. Still listening. Still compassionate.

What did Hannah do?

1) She poured her heart out to The Lord.

But Hannah answered, “No, my lord, I am a woman troubled in spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I have been pouring out my soul before the Lord.”

1 Samuel 1:15

The Hebrew word for pour here is

“Shaphak” – meaning to gush out, to spill forth, to sprawl out.

In other places in scripture, Hebrew word for “pour” is used in reference to a drink offering.

Which means, ladies, that when we pour our heart out to The Lord, it pleases Him the way that pouring out a drink offering offering pleased Him in the Old Testament!!!

Just let it out, girls! Move your lips, like Hannah did. God knows your heart, but He wants you to express it to him. It is pleasing to Him. It blesses Him.

2) Pour out what’s really in there. Don’t sugarcoat it.

“Do not regard your servant as a worthless woman, for all along I have been speaking out of my great anxiety and vexation.”

1 Samuel 1:16

Hannah spoke out of her hurt to The Lord. She didn’t mix it with superficial, surface level praise. She let it all gush out.

Real. Pain. Hurt.

She opened the spout and leaned the pitcher of her heart out on the altar.

God heard. God answered.

3) After God answered, she recognized He was the One who blessed her.

For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me my petition that I made to him.

‭‭1 Samuel 1:27

The Lord remembered Hannah and blessed her with a child, Samuel. Not all the time, but sometimes, God grants what we ask. When He does, give Him the glory for what He’s done!

In my own life, this passage was my prayer for a child as well. The Lord granted my request 12 years ago, and our firstborn son is named Samuel (Sam 🙂 because He so tenderly led me to Hannah ‘s story of:

1) pouring her heart out to Him

2) not sugarcoating her prayers

3) Giving Him glory

So whether it’s infertility or grumpy coworkers frustrating you, pour out your heart sincerely to The Lord. He’s listening and He loves you!

‭‭If you need to Refocus on what’s most important, go deeper with the edition of Refocused Bible Study that right for you!

‭‭Married with children Single mom

Married woman

Single woman

The Cross

Your God came to earth and lived to die to forgive you of your sins. I don’t know about you, but that makes me pretty excited!

– Sam Terry

“He canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross. In this way, he disarmed the spiritual rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross.”

‭‭Colossians‬ ‭2:14-15‬ ‭NLT‬‬

In chapter 8, Sam’s childlike excitement about Jesus’ love, free gift of forgiveness, and heaven forever with Him is contagious. Linger at the foot of the cross of your Savior today & bask in his grace until you feel excited with childlike faith again or for the first time. Jesus loves you! It really is that simple.

Power Question: Are you excited about Jesus’ love and forgiveness through His Cross?

This post is from chapter 8 of a short devotional, Understanding God.

Thank you for joining us in this space to go through the book. I hope it’s blessing you!

Worship

Worship keeps us in awe of God.

In chapter seven, Sam shares how one of his favorite ways to keep a good relationship with God is through worship songs. This child took his first steps just below the stage during worship band practice inside the walls of our church! Worship music has been a huge part of his life from before his birth, when his dad would sing to my pregnant belly. He loves to write his own worship music and has been doing so since he was a preschooler.

How does worship music keep you in awe of God?

It reminds you of who God really is. Often, it breaks through the disconnect between the mind and strikes a chord in your heart. Through worship music, we physically surrender our pride and fear, and we worship a Holy God who loves us without end.

Power Question: Do you connect with God through worship? If not, what is stopping you? If so, what are your favorite songs right now?

This post is from chapter 7 of a short devotional, Understanding God.

Thank you for joining us in this space to go through the book. I hope it’s blessing you!

Stories

We are all living the story God has written for us and sees in its fullness from start to finish. He knows the plot, has chosen the characters, and the timeline for events to occur.

As Sam writes about in chapter 6, Stories:

“So all the generations from Abraham to David were fourteen generations, and from David to the deportation to Babylon fourteen generations, and from the deportation to Babylon to the Christ fourteen generations.”

‭‭Matthew‬ ‭1:17

He is a God of detail.

Our Father has detailed plans of time, redemption and restoration. We may think He is being slow about His promises, but He is actually being patient so more will be saved. (2 Peter 3:9).

Lord, help us lean into your perfect love, including your perfect plans that include using imperfect people like us. Imperfect people, like those in your lineage, Jesus: Abraham, David, and even me.

Thank you for including me in your beautiful story of redemption and restoration. I can’t wait to see your tapestry of grace in heaven, all connected and woven together for good. Please use me in your redemption stories. Help me trust your perfect timing that include the details I could never consider. Jesus’ name amen.