Skip to main content


 Do you ever just read along in your Bible and have a phrase just jump off the page at you? That happened to me this morning. I was reading in Ephesians 6 about the armor of God. Paul said to put it on. In verse 13, Paul tells the believers to Use every piece of God's armor to resist the enemy in the time of evil so that after the battle, you will still be standing firm. (NLT) I've probably read this passage 100 times or more. I've taught from it, studied it, and meditated on it. But those three words leaped off the page as I read through it once again. 

After. I sometimes wish this verse read that if we put on all of God's armor, we can avoid the battle. lol. You know that passage where Jesus tells Peter that the enemy desired to sift him like wheat? (Luke 22). What did Jesus go on to tell Peter? But I have prayed for you. Jesus goes on to say He prayed for Peter that his faith wouldn't fail  - and that after he repents and is restored, he would go on to strengthen the brethren. Notice that Jesus didn't pray that Peter wouldn't go through the test - but He prayed concerning him after the test. He prayed that Peter's faith would not fail, not that he could escape the battle.

This word after is looking huge right now! Sometimes our days are filled with fights. That makes for a lot of afters. Our emotions war at us. Some of us fight feelings of abandonment and loneliness. Many caregivers deal with living grief. No one will argue the point that caregiving is tough. There are no easy days. lol. Even though we are not promised that there will be battles, we do know that there are many afters. 

After He's carried us through another dark valley. After our loved one is released from the hospital. I'm sure you've got a long list of afters since caregiving is so personal and unique for each individual. But we are all still standing. We are still seeking Him. Before, during, and after each battle. There's no doubt that He carries us through the battles common to caregiving. I'm so glad He does!

Today, I'll remind myself that there are lots of afters to look back on. That means there are plenty of battles won. So, today I'll shift my focus from the present battles and take a look back at some that He's already brought me through. I'll thank Him for the emotional wins, the financial wins, the relationship wins, the mental wins, spiritual wins, and any other win I can encourage my heart with today! I'll remind myself that we always triumph in Him, even if we are not exempt from the battle! Well, with no battle - there's no win. :-) I'll thank Him for the battle because I know there's an after. Will you join me?


After much thought and prayer - It looks like I will be closing down my bookstore. My criteria for keeping it open have been that it pays for itself. I will likely keep it open for a few more weeks and then will shut it down. I'll continue to make books available through Amazon. But  Dove's Fire Ministries Bookstore is likely to close soon - grab anything you're interested in before then, especially the smaller books and study guides. They will not be available on Amazon.


Popular posts from this blog

Ups and Downs

  Maybe it's just "that time of year" for me, but I've struggled a lot the last few weeks. I still affectionately  call it the caregiver's fog. Lol. Okay, maybe it's not-so-affectionately. I know I can share my true feelings with you guys because you get it. You understand the day-to-day grind of caregiving. The military has a saying about there being no easy day. I think we live in that reality. It's just not easy caring for another whole person, is it? Caregiving presents many difficulties. We can find ourselves alone, so very alone on this journey. It doesn't just go away. We don't just work through it. It seems to go on and on. There are lots of ups and downs - and that can be about every 90 seconds some days. Right? (smile!) As I've been working through this emotional maze the last few days, I turned my thoughts to Daniel. Let's take a realistic look at his circumstances because as we read his story in the Bible, we tend to glamorize i

Seasons Are Temporary

  This morning, I found myself reading in Isaiah 28. I ended up there because I was looking for something in particular, and even though I didn't find what I was looking for, I found what I needed. God's so cool like that, isn't He? My eyes first fell on verse 29, which says in the NKJ: This also comes from the Lord of hosts, Who is wonderful in counsel and excellent in guidance. I rolled that over in my mind and heart a few times and spent a few minutes thinking about how I'd seen His counsel in action in my own life. We've all had those times when we weren't sure what to do or where to go, and suddenly, an idea drops into our thoughts. There are many ways He provides direction for us. He may direct our steps through a passage of scripture, a trusted spiritual leader such as a pastor, a YouTube teacher, and maybe even a lowly blog writer. Lol. No matter how He chooses to deliver His counsel, it comes - but we must listen. After I had rolled these thoughts and t

Seek and Ye Shall Find

 Over the last few weeks, I've been trying to strategize ways of dealing with stress. It's something we all deal with, especially caregivers. I'm walking and exercising more, which helps the body get rid of stress and it helps improve sleep to some degree. But I've also been working on training my thoughts. I've been working on purposefully finding things to be thankful for. At first, it was a bit difficult because let's face it, caregiving is hard work.  This morning, I was plugging Chris into a nebulizer for a breathing treatment as he had an asthma attack yesterday afternoon after we'd been out for a little bit. As I was doing his treatment and his tube feeding, I didn't even really think about it; this "thought" just rolled up out of me. I thought, thank you, Lord, for carrying us through the long night. My own thankfulness surprised me! Lol. I realized at that moment that it's getting easier and easier to be thankful, even for the litt