Beginning March 2, 2014 no new posts. Please use the Archive and Topical listings.


If you would like to receive a weekly e-mail reminder of each new post e-mail your request to:

You may also contact me at the above e-mail address with any comments or questions that you may have regarding any post. Please indicate that your comments are confidential and they will not be shared on the blog site.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Visit (in)courage and Read My Guest Post

On September 21st I was the guest writer at the (in)courage website. (in)courage is a part of DaySpring, the Christian subsidiary of Hallmark. This website features many regular Christian writers whose purpose in writing is to encourage others. I feel privileged and honored that the gals at (in)courage invited me to write a guest post on their website. If you would like leave a comment at the end of the post please do so. That way the gals at (in)courage will know that you visited their site and received encouragement!

My post is entitled “Graying With Grace"
You may read more by clicking on the (in)courage button bling on the right side of this page or use this link. After you are on the (in)courage website click on the DAILY GUESTS tab located at the top of the page. Although my post is no longer the featured post but you may still locate it by clicking on "Previous Entries" found at the bottom of the page.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

A Fragrant Offering

“Be imitators of God, therefore,

as dearly loved children and live a life of love,

just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us

as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

Ephesians 5:1-2 NIV

One of my favorite flowers are Old Fashioned Lilacs. This flower has become one of my favorites, not because it is the most beautiful flower in my garden but because it is one of the most fragrant! I also love a beautiful pink and white Star Gazer Lily for the same reason. Both of these flowers are indeed beautiful but beauty alone does not make them special. It is their fragrance that endears them to me.

God loves all of his children. Some of us bring him more pleasure than others. I must ask myself, how can I bring God pleasure? I believe it is through my influence more than anything else. In Ephesians Paul tells us that we are to be imitators of God. It is important that our life reflects God character. Some of those character traits are found in the fruits of the spirit. You and I need our life to reflect love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. These fragrant qualities are a fragrant offering and a sacrifice to God.

If my life is a billboard for hate and prejudice, then my influence is not love. If I am negative in all that I say and if I never smile, then my life does not reflect joy. If I am stressed to the limit and crabby because of my stress, if I am full of fear for the unknown, then my life does not reflect peace. If I am impatient with those who serve me and most importantly with my family, then my life does not reflect patience, kindness, and goodness. If my allegiance to God is in direct relationship to how well I feel I am being treated in life, then my life does not reflect faithfulness. If I am hard on others, then my life does not reflect God’s grace and gentleness. If I fly off the handle and indulge in things that are not good for me and speak every negative, sarcastic thought that pops into my head, then my life does not reflect self-control. When my selfishness is so prominent in my life that my actions and words reflect only my selfish interest, then my life is not a fragrant offering, in fact, it stinks! The only thing that I am offering up to God and others is stench instead of love. As a result, my influence is exactly opposite of God’s character. I find myself in the position of being a child of God that does not bring him pleasure. I may look good on the outside but there will be no fragrance coming from inside my life that will bring God glory.

If you are like me, sometimes you get it right and other times you fail. Thankfully, God is a God who knows how to take my failures and sin and cast them away forever. He always stands ready to help me improve and do better next time. God is not finished with any of us yet! I believe that the fragrant offering that I can offer God is the sacrifice of my selfishness. It is my desire to keep returning to my compassionate, merciful God who wants to help me in my time of need. There are many times as believers that we do get it right and God is pleasured when we do. Yet many times a day I am faced with choosing to have better behavior and attitudes. If I am to be a fragrant offering to God and others I must continue to learn to choose to respond as Jesus would.


How did you do yesterday?

What did you get right?

Were you a fragrant offering or a stench to God and others?

Is it easier to be kind to strangers and friends than it is to your family?

Have you asked God for his forgiveness for yesterday?

Have you asked God for his help today?


Oh God!

I am so sick of my failures to be loving, patient, and joyful. I confess to you that my failure to respond with gentleness, kindness and goodness is at many times lacking. I am distraught that I often display my lack of faithfulness and self-control. I repent that there are many times that I am anything but gentle. Help me this day, this hour to be your sweet fragrance first of all to my husband, my children, and my friends. Help me also to be your fragrance at work, in the marketplace, on the road, and in all my dealings with those who provide services for me. Thank you God that you are not finished with me yet. God your fragrance of love for me is such a sweet perfume that I can smell it even in the midst of my failure. Thank you for that love.

In Your Name I pray. Amen.