A Yielded Heart


Last November happened to be one of those times in life when I struggled with something God was wanting me to do. A new friend suddenly needed housing, and after about a week of praying God would provide, I sensed the Lord saying we were to be His provision. I’d just met her so didn’t know her well, and the thought of inviting a near stranger to live with us made me more than a bit nervous. So instead of taking it to Gary right away, I decided to sit on it a few days and continue to pray God would provide – somewhere else. Strange though, every time I prayed, I sensed the Lord say (inaudibly), “I already gave her a home. Deal with it.”

Finally after sharing my thoughts with Gary and both praying on it a few more days, with trepidation we invited her to move in. It’s been almost 4 months now, and she has been an absolute delight. After she moved in, Gary went on extended hours at work, and L was here to keep me company. We’ve recently had some extremely stressful times with one of our sons, and L has been a huge comfort.

I’ve once again been thinking about Genesis 4, the story of Cain and Abel, and have come to see Cain’s struggle regarding his unacceptable offering to God as a matter of intimacy. Read on to see why…

Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil. In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the Lord. And Abel also brought an offering—fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock. The Lord looked with favor on Abel and his offering, but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast.



Then the Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.”

Now Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.” While they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him. (To read the entire conversation in Genesis 4:2-11, click here.)

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The passage says Abel gave “the first” of his flock. It states Cain only gave “some” of his produce.

  • Later in the Old Testament we read that God required the first of the produce or flocks as an offering every year (Deuteronomy 26:1-11). This was so God’s people would annually be reminded He was their provider, and to give them an opportunity to exhibit trust in His ability to provide well for them throughout the rest of the year. (Our tithe is to to the same.)
  • Every offering had to come from the best the giver could give (Malachi 1:8). Doing anything else would mean the giver was saving the best for themselves showing the intents of their hearts to be less than fully devoted to God the true giver. (Our offerings do the same.)

From this passage, I learn:

  • God isn’t being cruel when he corrects me, His love is offering me a way of growth and greater intimacy with Him as I experience His personal provision and care.
  • His warnings are only to protect me from harm.
  • My enemy, the devil, will always distort God’s instructions to mean God is either insecure or too demanding and therefore unfair.
  • When I listen to God’s warnings in His Word and the prompting of His Spirit, I can be assured He’s pointing me to greater intimacy with Him which offers me the greatest freedom because of how He made us.

What do my actions and attitudes say? Like Cain, is pride more important than intimacy? Are my things or maintaining control more important?

What do these ‘more important’ things say about my heart toward God? Does my heart show a yieldedness that longs for intimacy with Him; or does my heart show greater loves?

I want to know [in the Greek this word is the same used for sexual intimacy – a personal knowing] Christ—yes, to know [same word] the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead. Phil 3:10-11 (NIV)

I long for intimacy with God, and so lately these are questions I’m asking myself.

Which are you?

These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.

Matthew 15:8

“Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the LORD, “and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the LORD, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”

Jeremiah 29:12-14 NIV

Lord, may I seek you with all my heart, not allowing anything separate me from intimacy with You. In Jesus’ name, amen

With much love,

Robin <3

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Wisdom for Conquering Jealousy

Wisdom in Dealing with Jealousy

  • The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. 1 Corinthians 10:13
  • “If someone is leaving you behind, and you are becoming jealous and embittered, keep praying that he may have success in the very matter where he is awakening your envy; and whether he is helped or not, one thing is sure, that your own soul will be cleansed and ennobled.” – William Law
  • The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:4-5

Read more: https://www.christianquotes.info/quotes-by-topic/quotes-about-jealousy/#ixzz590FINy3e https://www.christianquotes.info/quotes-by-topic/quotes-about-jealousy/#ixzz590Ingo00

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With love,


When I Fear the Opinion of Others

Fear of how others view mesays more about me than them.How others treat me flows from their heartwhile my fear flows from mine.The only remedy is a changeof heart. (1)

The only remedy for fear of how others view me is to refocus on those whose opinions of me matter most:

God created me. His views trump all others. (Psalm 139:13-18)

Jesus died for my salvation. His views trump all others. (Romans 5:6-11)

In Christ, the Holy Spirit dwells within me. His views trump all others. (Romans 5:15)

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A Remedy for Jealousy

It's so easy to forget God wants us to compare ourselves with no one, but to see ourselves and our gifts through His eyes alone (2)

My blogging journey has been anything but easy. I love to write and love all I’m learning, but my older years haven’t made it easy for me to learn new tricks and so gaining followers has been an uphill climb. Recently, as I perused my social media feeds, my eyes locked onto an Instagram post from a fellow blogger who was sharing a recent blessing from a follower. She’s young and talented and frankly God wanted her to know she had encouraged someone along their journey. Instantly I found myself struggling with jealousy because of God’s blessing and encouragement. Fortunately, God’s blessing of conviction followed on the heals of my temptation. “Robin, you should be glad for her. You know how hard it can sometimes be to write!”

Had not God’s Spirit invaded my thoughts in that moment, jealousy could have poisoned my heart and mind. These days, it would be easy to blame social media for my emotions, but I can’t. Jealousy has been around since the fall – remember Cain and Abel?

Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil. In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the Lord. And Abel also brought an offering—fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock. The Lord looked with favor on Abel and his offering, but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast.

Then the Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.”

Now Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field. While they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.

Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?”

“I don’t know,” he replied. “Am I my brother’s keeper?”

What should Cain have avoided, and what should we avoid to quell jealousy?

  • In pride, Cain elevated his own way over God’s, producing anger at not getting what he felt entitled to receive.
  • Cain rejected God’s admonition to control his hurt pride and anger, and instead fed his sense of entitlement.
  • Cain gave full vent to his anger, adding to it deceit and murder.
  • Instead of confessing his sin when confronted, he brushed it off, hardening his heart further.
If left unchecked jealousy damages us within so that we no longer value relationships with God and man as God intended. Click To Tweet

My thoughts that day weren’t any where near murderous, and most of us will never go that far. But left unchecked, jealousy can bear such fruit as bitterness, anger, and hatred. Scripture gives us strong warnings about allowing such emotions to take control:

Look after each other so that none of you fails to receive the grace of God. Watch out that no poisonous root of bitterness grows up to trouble you, corrupting many. Hebrews 12:15 (NLT)

“You have heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not murder. If you commit murder, you are subject to judgment.’ But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment [a necessity to stand before God’s court]! Matthew 5:22 (NLT)

Anyone who hates another brother or sister is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them. 1 John 3:15 (NLT)

If left unchecked jealousy damages us within so that we no longer value relationships with God and man as God intended
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What are our alternatives?

  • Remember God has a unique plan for us that won’t look like anyone else’s plan. When God’s plan for the moment seems as though he’s comparing us to someone else, remember He’s not.
It's so easy to forget God wants us to compare ourselves with no one, but to see ourselves and our gifts through His eyes alone. Click To Tweet
  • When God advises us to make a different choice, listen – He’s only warning us for our good. God sees the outcome as well as our current circumstances. Listen well.
  • We are called to take control of our emotions rather than allowing our emotions to control us.

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

2 Corinthians 10:5

Above all, God longs for us to experience the full measure of gifts found in relationship with both him and our fellow man. Jealousy destroys relationship. Get rid of it quickly!

Lord, thank you for dealing with my thoughts quickly. Thank you for strengthening me to listen and yield to your tender admonitions rather than giving into jealousy. Help us to see the dangers of allowing jealousy full sway, and choose your way instead. In Jesus’ name, amen.

With love,

Robin <3

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A Man Who Pursued God

In memory

The men who followed Him were unique in their generation. They turned the world upside down because their hearts had been turned right side up. The world has never been the same. - Billy Graham, speaking of… Click To Tweet

Reverend Billy Graham passed away February 21, 8 a.m. at the age of 99. I thank God for his life and legacy. We pray for those He left behind.

As a child and young woman I remember sitting before our family’s black and white TV as Billy Graham spoke to thousands, boldly proclaiming that Jesus was the only way to heaven and the only source of lasting peace and hope. Because I’d already accepted Jesus into my life, I took his life and ministry for granted. To me, he was a just a preacher with a southern drawl being used by God.

(taken from the Los Angeles Times)

However, when I read His biography, “Just As I Am,” first published in April, 1997, I discovered an amazing man of God whose life and testimony greatly impacted the world. In honor of a man who pursued God with all his might, and changed the world in the pursuing, I’d like to share some things about him worth emulating:

  • He was born in 1917, and grew up on a dairy farm in Charlotte NC. As he grew, his aspirations led him in the way of professional baseball. However, at the age of 16, out of curiosity he attended the revival meetings of a traveling preacher, Mordecai Ham, and found himself drawn to the preacher’s message of personal sin and a need for repentance. Although he was ‘a good boy,’ the preacher’s words struck Billy and he knew they were directed at his heart, his life. His decision to give his heart to Christ and pursue the calling God gave him changed everything. In obedience he left his dream of baseball and enrolled in Bible college. Upon finishing several years of Bible school he became a Southern Baptist preacher. Later, he traveled the country leading crusades and preaching the very message that had changed his life.
(taken from the Los Angeles Times)
  • In the 1950’s, his revival meetings were unsegregated.
  • Personal integrity and his witness for Christ were so important to him throughout his ministry, he set up several safeguards so as to never be alone with another woman other than his wife.
  • Although he was friend to every president since Truman, he never used his platform for personal gain.
  • He went anywhere God sent him and gave him the platform to share the gospel, even though some of his international crusades were controversial at the time.
  • When going into a city for a crusade, he always coordinated with the local churches so as to give a place for new converts to grow in Christ.
  • The finances for his crusades were always handled by a separate organization so as not to appear that he was personally profiting from the money given.

As I look at his life, I am reminded this man was nothing special on his own. He grew up as many of us, yet lived a life so unlike ours. How?

  • He chose to follow God with his whole being wherever God directed.
  • The message of the gospel and the change it had brought to his own life was worth any risk.
  • He made certain that his words matched his life as best he could.
  • He took steps to make certain his was a life that represented Christ well.

I’d like to close with a quote from his later years. When asked if he would change anything regarding his career he responded:

“I would study more. I would pray more, travel less, take less speaking engagements. I took too many of them in too many places around the world. If I had it to do over again I’d spend more time in meditation and prayer and just telling the Lord how much I love him.” – Billy Graham.

If I had it to do over again I'd spend more time in meditation and prayer and just telling the Lord how much I love him. - Billy Graham. Click To Tweet

Graham in 2010.

Graham in 2010. (Nell Redmond / Associated Press)

Lord, thank you for this man’s life and legacy. May we as believers emulate his love and devotion to you. May we willingly step out and risk everything for your gospel. May we live even as we speak. Please. In Jesus’ name, amen.

(All photos were taken from a Los Angeles Times article on the life of Billy Graham.

With love,


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Do I Willingly Cover Another’s Shame?


As I consider Christ's sacrifice to cover and eradicate my shame, it makes me ponder: am I willing to cover the shame of another? Click To Tweet

Post 5, 2018

I was at a meeting a couple of weeks ago where I knew no one. Most of us at the meeting were strangers, so as the meeting commenced, we each went around the room and shared a bit about ourselves. It wasn’t long before a particular individual stood out as someone wanting to control every aspect of the conversation. With almost every introduction, this person had something crucial to say about this or that and so interrupted almost everyone as they spoke. Even after the introductions, she dominated the discussion, oblivious to the facial expressions and body language of the other participants indicating frustration at her monopoly.

I began to rile inside with the inability to stop her interruptions, and longed for the moderator to step in. As the evening progressed, I realized I needed to check my own body language so as not to come across as rude and indifferent, yet am not certain how well I accomplished grace. I was really ticked off.

Once alone, and again the next morning, my emotions were still unsettled and a bit miffed. As I remembered the previous evening, I began to pray, “Lord, would you please convict the hearts of those moderating so this doesn’t happen every week? Would you let them realize they must gain some control of the situation?”

love covers

Then the inaudible voice of the Holy Spirit began to speak and convict me, “Robin, what if instead you prayed I convict her of her need to control all conversations? What if you asked me to free her from her bondage to needing control? What if you prayed my Spirit move within the meeting each week and moderate all conversation toward building one another up in Christ?

Then without warning, the Spirit began to hone in on my own heart….What if you saw your own need to control and show grace? And what if you considered maybe why she may have this tendency?

What if I checked my own heart and loved in a way so as not to add to another's wounds by my own frustration toward them? Click To Tweet

Covering shame.

God’s love through me sacrificing my comfort to cover her shame. Or as the Apostle Paul put it:

LOVE... (1)
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Truth. Life. Transforming me, then transforming others through me.

Lord, forgive me for thinking not of her need, but only of my own discomfort. Forgive me for looking only on the outward appearance of things, and thank you for reminding me of someone’s bruised heart. Forgive me for wanting to take this into my own hands and forgetting your Spirit is able to move and work in a grand way to free each of us. Please use this time to show each of us our need, and may your Spirit love lavishly through us as we meet.

So all can experience having their shame covered.

For your honor, and our good.

In Jesus’ name, amen.

You may also wish to look at the previous post, “A Love that Covers Shame

With gratitude for God’s love covering my shame,

Robin <3

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A Love That Covers Shame

Post 4, 2018

_Come now, Let us settle this,_ says the lord

Last week I visited a friend with two adorable children under 5. During the visit I noticed the two-year old head to the fridge, open the door and hide while attempting to sneak a snack. Her mamma smiled and softly explained her daughter had recently begun helping herself to a snack before lunch. As mom and I talked on, the little one, oblivious to our watchful eyes, walked quietly into the open dining area only feet away. Grasping her piece of cheese she hunkered under the dining table with an occasional turn aside to see if her deeds were still unnoticed. Soon mom turned to her daughter and quietly spoke, “Honey, I don’t mind if you have cheese.” Upon realizing all was well, the toddler quickly came out of her hiding space to join us as she continued to munch.

Shame and guilt always bring separation while God desires reconciliation. Click To Tweet

From the first hint of shame and guilt in the garden, mankind has assumed a holy God reviles us as our rebellion deserves. Certainly Adam and Eve felt that way. Upon discovering their nakedness for the first time, Adam and Eve covered themselves in leaves then hid from God in shame and fear. When they failed to show up for their daily visit, God called their names, and their response immediately alluded to the fact of what they’d done. Their rebellion brought shame and made them incapable of standing before a holy God. And with shame, Adam and Eve wrongfully assumed God would also now shame them, and so ran from rather than to His presence.

However, a holy God never desires us to stay within our shame, so after enacting discipline to bring them to repentance, God slaughtered an animal to picture the slaughter of His Son centuries away, and personally fashioned garments for his beloved children. Even in rebellion, God’s immense love acted to cover their shame and remove their guilt.

True love always strives to cover the guilt and shame of the beloved. Click To Tweet

The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. Genesis 3:21 (NIV)

Centuries later as Jesus, God’s own Son, realized his death was imminent stood on a hill outside Jerusalem, and looked over the city where He’d soon be beaten, mocked, and then crucified. As His Father did so long ago, He longed to not only cover the guilty shame of His people but eradicate it by the sacrifice of His own blood. Knowing His sacrifice would be rejected by many He cried out:

O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones God’s messengers! How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings, but you wouldn’t let me. Luke 13:34 (NLT)

Jesus invites us to (1)
Where today are you? Do you continue to hide in your shame, assuming God despises you for your guilt and shame? Or have you run to Him, asking Him to remove its stain for you?

May I please pray for you?
Dear Lord, it’s so easy for me to assume you despise me in my guilty state, and wait for the opportunity to expose and punish me. Yet, I see here you long to cover my shame and guilt rather than expose me further. It seems to says you long to eradicate my shame rather than punish me. Help me to trust the truth in your words. My guilt and shame are great, and I long to find freedom from their torment. Would you make a place for me under your wing? Would you cover me and heal me? Please. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Come rest under God’s covering embrace with me. It’s wide enough for any who choose to shelter there.

…be earnest and disciplined in your prayers. Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.

1 Peter 4:7-8 (NLT)

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You may wish to also look at the previous post, “A True Friend” or the next post “Do I Willingly Cover Another’s Shame?

With much love,

Robin <3

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