Encouraging Words Blog 


The Answer to Down

“Why are you downcast, O my soul?  Why so disturbed within me?  Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.”  (Psalm 42:5, NIV)

Do you ever have those “down” days that just sneak up on you and catch you by surprise?  I know I do.  While I try to stay positive about things, every so often I find myself feeling kinda blue and I’m not even sure why.  Sure, I have my regular challenges to face, but I usually recognize the “downs” they bring.  

When idk Isn’t Good Enough

Does your need to understand why things happen put you in the place of doubting God?  Some times not knowing the answer is ok …  

“All this,” David said, “I have in writing as a result of the Lord’s hand on me, and He enabled me to understand all the details of the plan.”  1 Chronicles 28:19

I heard an interesting comment yesterday. I was watching a television worship program, and the pastor was talking about people asking why things happened.

The Circle of God’s Love

A friend of mine called me today and told me she had a musical challenge for me.  She had read a devotional and gotten an image in her mind that she wondered if I could translate into a song.

Where can I go from your Spirit?  Where can I flee from your presence?

If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.

If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me; your right hand will hold me fast.

When Weeping Endures

“Weeping endures for a night, But joy comes in the morning.” Psalm 30:5

Now, I don’t know about you, but for me – it seems easier to cry at night time.  I’m not sure if it is because I feel the darkness will hide my tears – if night time seems lonelier – or if it is just so much quieter and the quiet allows me to think about the things that are easier kept tucked away in the business of day.

There are times I dread the night times completely.  …

Does God Really Deliver Us From Our Fears?

I sought the LORD, and he answered me;  He delivered me from all my fears. Psalm 34:4 (NIV)

I do not consider myself to be a Biblical scholar.  There is much I do not know.  I know I do enjoy reading scripture and looking at verses.  Sometimes I see verses in a different light than I did previously.  This verse is one of those verses.

It seems plain that the Psalmist is saying that he sought God and found Him and that God answered him.  …

Porcupine Days?

Even to your old age and gray hairs, I am he who will sustain you.  I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.  Isaiah 46:4

I've learned that the best way to describe one of my days is to say I am having a porcupine day.

On porcupine days, I don't want to be touched.  Sometime, even a brush across my skin, or weight pressed against me hurts.  

But porcupine days involve more than that.  

When Life Hurts

"Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you!” (Isaiah 49:15, NIV)

“But why does it have to hurt so much?” 

I remember uttering those words to my mother when I was a teenager after ‘breaking up’ with my first real boyfriend.  I just couldn’t understand the pain involved.  The emotional pain was every bit as real as any physical pain could be.

When We Feel “Less Than …”

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. Romans 8:37

When you live with chronic challenges, it is so easy to feel “less than.”  It is as if we lose important parts of our identities.  Yet, God tells us that we are “more than.” 

I have to admit that I don’t always feel like I am more than  ... well - more than anything much at all.  I think that is why it is so important not to be driven by our emotions.  …

What Can Happen in an Hour - or Less

But the people were thirsty for water there, and they grumbled against Moses. They said, “Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to make us and our children and livestock die of thirst?” Exodus 17:3

Sometimes the simplest of words bring the biggest lessons home to me.

I would not have told you that I am upset by my current health setback.  I've admitted to fear of what all is happening again, but upset?  Resentment? …

Is Every Prayer Answered?

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the LORD. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8-9) NIV

I am often “fuddled” (to use one of my mom’s favorite words) when I try to understand the way the Lord works in my life.  I do believe that every prayer we send up is answered.  I’ve found though, that the answers are most often not what I expect or foresee or sometimes even really want, if I am honest about it.

Where Do We Turn in Our Time of Need?

I don’t know about you, but the “needy” times never really seem to stop.  I guess I’m learning that this is my life - and I am the one who must choose to make the best of it by staying focused on God and not on the present moment.  Prayers for grace and endurance abound.  I pray this devotional from 2008 might speak to you today.

In Our Time of Need

Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need  (Hebrews 4:16)  NIV.

Knowing Everything Is All Right

This is one of my favorite stories.  I find it quite inspiring - to be able to have confidence in all situations that God is always working for our good.

Everything Is All Right (2008)

But the woman became pregnant, and the next year about that same time she gave birth to a son, just as Elisha had told her.  The child grew, and one day he went out to his father, who was with the reapers.  "My head! My head!" he said to his father.  …

Remembering Who the Battle Belongs To

I was going to add the blog posts in order of their previous publishing, but for some reason this one stopped as I scrolled through my older posts.  I reread it and realized that the question I asked of myself in 2013, shortly after my husband lost his hard fought battle with cancer, was one I need to ask myself again.  So, praying that God has invented this for someone other than myself (as well as myself), I’m sharing it today.

Always In His Grip

This was a good devotional for me to reread today and I hope it encourages you as well.  Sometimes I feel as if I am out here alone - forgotten by God.  Those are usually the times when I focus on my circumstances and not on God.  What I love about this verse is that the Psalmist was actively looking, seeking God.  He knew exactly where His help came from.  So, if this is a day when you are feeling alone or helpless - remember God’s promises.  …

what if - a journey in piety and poetry

(There is a good possibility this poem will not translate well into email format.  If the words do not form a cross, I’d encourage you to visit the website to view this devotional.) 

Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. Matthew 6:24

Posted on deni writes: September 2013

what is it all about, really?

what if it is simply 

about being his.

What Your Words Say About You

"Negatives Positives Computer Keys" by Stuart Miles.jpg

This was a challenging post for me to read through.  You see, I still battle with my words.  Well, maybe not my words, but the tone in which I say things.  I am prone to gossip about someone rather than pray for them.  And, I still use some of my old excuses that I don’t feel well, so my unkindness should be taken into account.  I don’t know if any of you deal with this issue - but this is still an “Ouch” post for me!

Learning Not to Fear


The following 2008 devotional hits close to home for me.  After having miraculously survived a cardiac arrest last March, I have had even more fears about my heart and the upcoming possibilities of intervention.  “Fear not” has become one of my favorite comments to myself.  I’d like to share another verse today, besides the one I used in the original posting.  Matthew 28:20 has come to mean a lot and is frequently repeated when fears arise. …

As the Storms Still Rage

It’s strange to go back and reread some of these older devotionals. I realize that the storms of this life are unrelenting. Since this was written in 2008, the storms have not abated,  yet the response to them remains the same: To calm the child.

The Storm  

“I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. …

When Your Life Falls Apart

A good friend of mine suggested that I might go into “reruns” for a while, as my ability to write is somewhat compromised right now.  I think it’s a good idea as I’ve had many new readers since I began this blog  seven years ago.  (Wow! That long ago!)

So - for an undetermined period of time, I’ll be re-posting devotionals that are meaningful for myself as I revisit them, and pray that they encourage you as well.

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