Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. (James 4:8)

Posts tagged ‘comfort’

When Life Gives You Pickled Lemons…

lemons_smoorenburg

Photo by smoorenburg on Flickr.

By Lisa Nordell-Detres

Remember that old adage that when life gives you lemons, make lemonade? There are some things that happen in our lives which cannot be sweetened up, no matter how much sugar is dumped over them. At times, the events of life cause deep grief and recovering from them takes time and patience. In the meantime, things can look pretty sour. And salty, if you were served pickled lemons. What can we do in the meantime to lift our spirits?

Today, I embarked on reading Psalm 119, the longest chapter in the Bible by far with 176 verses. What caught my eye first was verse 11, “Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against you.” When we are down in the dumps, the first thing we need to do is run for our Abba Father God, rather than the refrigerator. He knows our hurts, shares our grief and is always there to comfort us.

As I continued reading, I noticed a pattern of phrases that dealt directly with depression and grief. “My soul clings to the dust; Revive me with Your word.” (Psalm 119:25) Ever feel like that? How about this one in verse 28: “My soul melts from heaviness; strengthen me according to Your word.”

Read on to verse 50: “This is my comfort in my affliction, For Your word has given me life.” No matter what the circumstances, the Bible is here to bring us up out of the dumps and to encourage, strengthen and bring much needed comfort into our lives. The key is back in verse 11, to have God’s word in our heart. Nobody can take that away and God’s comfort is always there to shine in the darkest of times.

Are you still wondering what to do with the pickled lemons? They won’t make lemonade, but they do add zing to many Mediterranean recipes, so get cooking!

Lisa Nordell-Detres is a mother of four, grandma to two boys with a third on the way (!), a pastor’s wife and has worked in the garment and customer service industries in southern California. Besides writing, Lisa enjoys cooking, sewing, organic gardening, hiking, skiing and doing most anything outside.

Lisa was born and raised in Denver, Colorado, holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Fashion Design from Woodbury University and an MBA from California State University at Northridge. Lisa, her husband and their youngest child now live in central Oregon.

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Book Review: seeing God in the simple things

Simple thingsXL

Book by Katherine Weaver

What do kites, smart phones and M & M’s have in common? The writer of this book finds hope and encouragement in God’s care in these and many other run-of-the-mill objects that we might normally pass right over as we travel through life.

Seeing God in the simple things is a collection of essays written during some difficult years in the author’s life. Unlike the standard fluffy devotional one might find in an inspirational aisle at the book store, this is more along the lines of “comfort food for the wounded soul.” Incorporating a sense of faith and peace, Katherine speaks to some of the most painful and common situations that so many people face these days. Her insightful observations gently teach us that especially during dark times in life, we can find peace and comfort if we slow down enough to appreciate the simple things in life.

I would definitely recommend this book for anybody who may need a tender boost of spirit. For those whose lives seem to be just fine, I would also recommend seeing God in the simple things because even when life seems to be great, we can all stand to become more sensitive to the things of God. This book will help us draw closer to God as we learn to consider His signature on so many of the objects and situations we experience throughout the day.

I had the opportunity to meet Katherine Weaver a couple of months ago and will share her thoughts on her book in my next post. Stay tuned!

Lisa Nordell-Detres is a mother of four, grandma to two boys, a pastor’s wife and has worked in the garment and customer service industries in southern California. Besides writing, Lisa enjoys cooking, sewing, organic gardening, hiking, skiing and doing most anything outside.

Lisa was born and raised in Denver, Colorado, holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Fashion Design from Woodbury University and an MBA from California State University at Northridge. Lisa, her husband and their youngest child now live in central Oregon.

A God Thing

By Lisa Nordell-Detres

Have you ever noticed that when good things happen to good people, we tend to say with confidence that “It was a God thing?” But when bad things happen to good people or when tragedies strike, we are at a loss for words? How can God let this happen?

Words cannot express the loss that we feel at the death of a loved one or a major setback in life. It is often during those times of disaster that we can grow the most as individuals. The most powerful comfort often comes from those who have experienced similar losses in their lives.

The story of Job in the Bible is an amazing testimony of one man’s faithfulness in the midst of unimaginable loss. Job was a righteous man in God’s eyes, a wealthy husband and father with ten grown children. In a very short time, his children were all killed and his wealth and health were taken from him. All he had left were his unsupportive wife and friends who came not to comfort him but to try to get him to confess some sin that they assumed was the reason for Job’s misfortune. Despite his dire circumstances, Job refused to curse God, but rather spoke with amazing clarity his understanding of God’s sovereignty,

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb and naked shall I return there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. ” (Job 1:21)

And again, “Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?” (Job 2:10b)

When we hear of people who have experienced substantial loss, they often express one of two perspectives. Either they mourn that “all is lost; life is over” or that “it was all just stuff and we are thankful to be alive.” Trusting in God’s daily provision can give us peace and a higher perspective in any of life’s circumstances.

Lisa Nordell-Detres is a mother or four, pastor’s wife and has worked in the garment and customer service industries in southern California. Besides writing, Lisa enjoys cooking, sewing, organic gardening, hiking, skiing and doing most anything outside.

Lisa was born and raised in Denver, Colorado, holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Fashion Design from Woodbury University and an MBA from California State University at Northridge. Lisa, her husband and their youngest child now live in central Oregon.

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