Encouraging Words Blog 


You Gotta Have a Sense of Humor

melting snowman

A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. Proverbs 17:22

This is one of the more bizarre days in our household - from a sick cat who needs to get to the vet and our cat carrier being loaned out - to my not being able to stand up straight (The after effects of the storm last night.  I think my body is now a barometer.  The less I can move, the worse the weather is.)- to my mom needing to get to the doctor ... and my husbands knee looking infected, and , and, and ... and it's barely even noon.

How Far Can You Travel in a Recliner?


Blessed are those whose strength is in you, whose hearts are set on pilgrimage. Psalm 84:5

pilgrimage |ˈpilgrəmij|   noun a pilgrim's journey.• a journey to a place associated with someone or something well known or respected making a pilgrimage to the famous racing circuit.See note at journey .

• life viewed as a journey life's pilgrimage.

pilgrim |ˈpilgrəm|  noun a person who journeys to a sacred place for religious 

Needing Reassurance?

Father's Hand

I have always like to be reassured of things.  I remember when I was little.  I would often run to my mom for reassurance that things were going to be ok.  Somehow, just being in her presence comforted me.  I felt that nothing bad could happen if I was with her.  Or, if the bad thing happened - she would make it better.

I guess I haven't changed a lot.  I still crave that reassurance that everything is going to be ok.

Just Because He Is


We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know Him who is true. And we are in Him who is true by being in His Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. 1 John 5:20

When I was younger, one would almost always find my nose in a book. (What an odd saying!) I'm finding some joy now in listening to books in audio format. I often listen to books I read long ago.  …

A Casting We Will Go


... casting all your anxiety on Him for He cares for you.  1 Peter 5:7

Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous be shaken.  Psalm 55:22

I was already aware of the 1 Peter verse.  Today I found the one in Psalms.  I had to smile a bit.  You see, I feel I am getting to know a bit more about God.  Granted - there is a lot to learn!  Yet I am seeing, more and more, a God who wants to help us through this life.

On My Knees - Again

Today is one of the "pain" days.  The chronic part of chronic illness becomes even more real as I read a post from a year ago and see how little the physical aspects of my life have changed.  I am in "survival" mode, wondering if I'll end up in the E.R. today due to pain.  So, once again, I find myself on my knees.  If you've read this before, I pray you can find something that speaks to you.  If you are new to the blog, welcome.

What I've Learned From Pain and Loss

woman crying

For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. Romans 8:22

I've a friend who has had a number of things happen in her life lately that are difficult to understand.  There are so many questions.  Why did God let this happen? Does God truly give you no more than you can handle?  Does God even care?

Difficult questions and often seemingly no answers.

Now, I'm not going to claim to have all the answers.  …

When God Says, "No"

My husband went to his workplace yesterday to pick up his personal belongings.  It was a day full of pain as the reality of his illnesses hit home.  He was walking away from the only job he had ever loved. I watched as his grief overwhelmed him - reminding me of the pain of my early losses.  This post is for him, originally penned in July of 2010.  

You have enclosed me behind and before, And laid Your hand upon me. …

More Than We Can Be

cross shadow

Now God has not only raised the Lord, but will also raise us up through His power. 1 Corinthians 6:14

If you've been following this blog for a while, you know how important music is to me.  Right now I have a song playing that fills my heart.  It's called "You Raise Me Up" by Josh Groban.

I'd like to share the lyrics with you.  I have posted the video below as it is sung by my mom's favorite singer - Danny O'Donnell. …

Seeking and Finding God


Do not let kindness and truth leave you; Bind them around your neck, Write them on the tablet of you heart.  Proverbs 3:3

One of the perks I was looking forward to after I had completed my education - 14 years of schooling to get several graduate and post graduate degrees - was that money would no long be an issue for our family.  

My kids would be grown, and my husband and I could begin to live our own life.  …

Looking for the Gift

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.  James 1:17

Gratitude seems to be a theme that keeps popping up for me over and over.  The 1,000 Gifts book about logging your gratitude.  And now "The Simple Woman's Daybook," logging in and grounding yourself with what is around you.  It is as if God is saying, "Slow down.  …



Your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him. (Matt. 6:8).

My God shall supply all your needs, according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. (Phil 4:19)

Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in Him; and He shall bring it to pass.  (Psalms 37:5)

Who will separate us from the love of Christ?  Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, ofr famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? (Romans 8:35)But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. …

It's Not Fair!!!

dead trees

Last night, I was awakened by thunder..  I was glad to hear that sound.  Our part of the country - like many others - is sorely in need of rain. 

One of the perks of living in NW Indiana is that we live very close to large blueberry farms.  Fresh blueberries every year!  We tend to get 90-100 pounds to last the nine of us through the year.  We've gotten spoiled.  

When we called to see if the farms were open, farm after farm told us that their crops failed due to weather.  …

Jehovah Shalom ... God's Peace

As I again face a challenging day - God provides.  This is a fantastic post about the peace we can achieve when God is in our lives.  I know that as my heart was banging around last night, I expected to feel my usual anxiety.  Instead, I felt a strange peace that had to come from God.

Today I opened this blog post  by Julie Sanders from "Do Not Depart" and it fit to a 'T.'  I could not put it any better and I share it with you in place of my usual writings.

Looking to the Good

I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Psalm 27:13 (NIV)

Recently my adopted son (who we are raising since the untimely death of my daughter) went on an overnight campout.  The kids did all kinds of fun things.  They went to the Indiana dunes for the campout and did all kinds of “nature stuff.”  They hiked up a sand dune - played outside way after dark - used a campfire to cook their dinner.  …

Your Ebenezer Stones


Then Samuel took a stone and set it between Mizpah and Shen, and named it Ebebezer, saying "Thus far the LORD has helped us.  1 Samuel 7:`13

There is a saying that almost always comes to mind when things are going badly for my family or those close to me and doubts begin to form about God's being there.  I'm not sure where I first heard it - and I'm guessing most everyone knows it or some variation of it.

"God hasn't brought you this far to let you down now."

When Life Falls Apart ... Again

First posted in 2008 - this is a meaningful post for me.  I head into Chicago today for dental issues and struggle with new undiagnosed medical issues.  For me, it's timely.  I hope they bring you encouragement today.

"You do not want to leave too, do you?" Jesus asked the Twelve.  Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God" (John 6:67-68 NIV)

For You Are My God

girl in prayer

Answer me quickly, Lord; my spirit fails. Do not hide your face from me or I will be like those who go down to the pit. Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life. Rescue me from my enemies, Lord, for I hide myself in you. Teach me to do your will, for you are my God; may your good Spirit lead me on level ground.

A "Less Than Perfect" Day

 May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance. 2 Thessalonians 3:5

It never seems to fail.  Never.  I write about facing challenges - and up pops another one in my own life.  It feels as if God is asking me if my words are only words - or if I hold them in my heart.

This is one of the "less than perfect" days.  My heart is acting up a bit and I need to rest in bed.  Gives one a lot of time to think.

Finding God's Way Out of the Pit


I remember the days of old; I meditate on all Your doings; I muse on the work of Your hands.  I stretch out my hands to You; My soul longs for You, as a parched land. Selah.  Psalm 143: 5 - 6

Have you ever been around folks who tell you not to look back at the past?  That it will only stir up memories of what could have been, might have been, and “what if’s”?  Why, even Lot’s wife was told not to look back.  So what is this with the Psalmist looking back?

Facing Our Challenges - Part 2

Therefore is my spirit overwhelmed within me; my heart within me is desolate. (Psalm 143:4)

When I read these words from Psalm 143, many feelings that bubble into my mind.  I am not sure whether I get more relief from the fact that someone has put my feelings into words or that someone else has felt this way, too.

It is particularly important to me that these words were written and addressed to God. It so contradicts the idea that we are not to express our true feelings about our illnesses – that we are to put on that “happy face” and pretend that everything is just fine.  

Facing Our Challenges

Hear my prayer, O LordGive ear to my supplications! Answer me in Your faithfulness, in Your righteousness! And do not enter into judgment with Your servant, For in Your sight no man living is righteous. For the enemy has persecuted my soul; He has crushed my life to the ground; He has made me dwell in dark places, like those who have long been dead.  Psalm 143: 1-3

I have often said that the Psalms hold some of the words that seem most like my life. …

Alone With Him

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28

This is far more personal than anything I have ever shared on this blog. I'm somewhat embarrassed to write it here, but I keep getting the feeling I need to do so.  

I know many folks feel God is far away from them.  

This is how I found myself growing ever closer to God. If it is offensive for any reason, I apologize in advance.

Stumbling in the Darkness

As I work on getting my strength and energy back, I will be posting a combination my older writings interspersed with new ones.  For those who are new to the blog, I hope you are blessed by them.  For those of you who may have read some of them before, I pray they can twice bless you.  Thank you all so much for your notes and prayers.

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.  …

Jesus With Skin On

For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. 1 Corinthians 13:12

This isn't my "usual" devotional post - yet I hope you can find it encouraging.  

I was never a television watcher.  I never went to the movies very often.  At least not before my challenges entered my life.  I was too busy - too active.  Yet, now that I've been afforded more time, I tend to do more reading (listening), watching TV, and movies.

Saving the Best for Last

This is another "rerun" - if you will.  How interesting I found it today - which is the 4th of July.  What a fitting reminder.

For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. …

Father Knows Best

Father's Hand

This is what the Lord says— your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel:

“I am the Lord your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go."  Isaiah 48:17

Ah!  If you remember "Father Knows Best," you are either close to my age, or you enjoy old TV reruns!  Far from the TV shows of today, the father of the show wasn't shown as some sort of bungling idiot, but soneone who - by the end of the 30 minutes displayed wisdom and cared deeply for his family.

Soul Food

"I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace" John 16:33

Have you ever wished you could truly find peace?   

When you live facing daily chronic challenges, peace may seem far away.  Pain, fear, loneliness – so many feelings can chase away the peace we seek.  

I started thinking the other day (sometimes a dangerous thing!) and looked to how the disciples knew Christ.

He had a relationship with His disciples.  …

 © deni weber 2010-2015