A Divine Starting Place without a Finish Line

Dec25_day26_Shellie

It's here, friends, Christmas Day has come. Please know that I'm forever touched by your desire to spend this season with me and my sweet author friends, (thanks again Tricia, Joneal, Marybeth, and Mary!) However close we came to celebrating the true meaning of Christmas throughout this season, or how far from the mark we found ourselves falling, our goal was a worthy one and Christmas Day has arrived offering us yet another brand new opportunity to worship. It's the only day we have to love Him, you know. Yesterday is over and tomorrow isn't ours. And yet, if we aren't sitting in a candle lit church this morning listening to reverent organ music we can feel far from holy. We can feel strangely distant, and curiously cold amidst all the paper, boxes, and bows. If our goal is to worship … [Read more...]

Who You Lookin’ At?!

Dec23_day24_Shellie

I just love today's prompt! Not because the words are mine, but because the grace it celebrates is all Jesus.  Read the Holy Words first and let the tense of the verse sink in as you consider the wonder working blood of Christ. It's not how well we can monitor the messy places of our hearts, hoping we're doing a good job of keeping ourselves 'fessed up and forgiven. Our role is to walk in the Light and the One who ever lives will ever cleanse. That's the kind of revelation that will turn a pew warmer into a passionate follower. And now, that prompt I was talking about...There's a lot of kitchen duty ahead and with it will come untold hand-washings-- and countless opportunities to celebrate Jesus, the God who came to be in the middle of it all, to forgive us one and all. Merry, Merry … [Read more...]

Living Forgiving on the Heart Wide Open Christmas Journey

Dec22_day23_Shellie

I'm convinced that God enjoys a good laugh as much as any of us, if not more. Last night was a fine example. After a long lovely day with family and friends, I plopped down in my recliner to jot y'all a note and post the next Heart Wide Open Devotional. If you'll remember, I wrote this journey for us this past July, and I've slept more than a few times since then. In other words, I'm literally walking this out with y'all. Each day's topic comes as a surprise for me, too. Which is why I had to giggle when I saw that this one was on family friction! That's right, meet Exhibit A. Yours truly had a chance to practice her own words today. Right in the middle of a super wonderful day, one of my dearly loved family members and I had our own little fireworks display. It blew up and over in a … [Read more...]

When Our Quest in Misguided

Dec21_day22_Shellie

This past July I was sitting underneath a whirling fan on my back porch with a huge glass of sweet tea at my side, typing out the daily devos that would become our Heart Wide Open journey. At the time, I had no idea what the Advent season held for my immediate family and that I would be needier than ever for my sweet Jesus come December. But He knew. He moved me to write words for all of us knowing full well that He would use them to strengthen me in the days ahead.  We'll talk more in the next few days, more about this amazing God who is with us, who meets us every morning with unfailing love and faithfulness. Oh, friends, everything we think we need from others is found in acknowledging Him. Let's take the message of our devo with us today and see how often today we can turn our … [Read more...]