I am a pastor’s wife and Bible teacher, and I help seekers of God know and understand who God is, so they can live the big life he has planned for them.
So You Can Know God
I understand what it feels like to long to know God and to feel like he’s near. I wish someone would have told me, when I first put my faith in Jesus, that it’s a journey to draw near to God. I wish someone had encouraged me along the way -that seeking God would require effort on my part that would be rewarded with an indescribable closeness with the Lord.
You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. (Jeremiah 29:13 NIV)
So I’m scooting up in my chair and leaning forward, to encourage you that God wants you to be close to him. He is eager for you to know him in a personal way. If you start looking for him, you will find him. And when you will find him, you will also discover the big life of joy and influence he has always intended you to have.
In July of 1977, I was eight years old when my pastor lifted me from the cold baptismal waters of the barely thawed Popo Agie River in Lander, Wyoming. My small church family was gathered on the shore with their hymnals, and they sang Shall We Gather at the River while someone wrapped me in a huge towel.
Shivering, I asked if I could go back to the car to get warm.
On the way to the car, I experienced a profound disappointment. I felt nothing after being baptized. I was no different except for being wet. What was the big deal about baptism if nothing special happened?
Where was God?
For most of the next decade I looked for God, anxious because my head was full up with information about God, but my heart felt nothing.
One day, in a high school biology class, I gave up on understanding cell division. My mind wandered, and once again I longed to understand this God who sent his Son to save me. I believed –believed in him with all my heart, but I wanted so much more than just that.
In that classroom, I prayed, Lord, I want to feel you. I want to know you.
The next summer I went to church camp, and there some precious folks taught me how to spend time with God every day, reading the Bible and praying. I got home and started to practice right away. At first, my time with God felt cold and mechanical, but then one day it didn’t. One day I was praying and God answered my prayer very specifically. One day I began to know the Lord, until I got to a place where I couldn’t remember ever not knowing him.
God wants us to boast that we know and understand him.
When we know him, we can live big lives that have a significant influence for the kingdom of God.
For this reason, I put my fingers on the keyboard a few times a week to brag –plain old boasting about how God has made himself real to me in the day. I share what the Lord is teaching me as I go through all the same things you do –relationship struggles, feelings of worthlessness that seem to come in like the tide, and general daily frustrations, delights, pains, and joys.
In the middle of all of these experiences God is real.
After more than 30 years of walking with God, my pantry has become well stocked with his great and precious promises -words that have given me everything I need for regular life. I hope you’ll come to the door of my blog post (the way my neighbor friend comes to borrow a cup of flour to make cookies), so I can share all this goodness with you.
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From Wyoming to Montana
I grew up in the small town of Lander, Wyoming (a three-hour drive to the nearest mall). I loved to read. Every night my mom would say, “Lights out!” and I would say, “Please just one more chapter?” She would let me get away with it, because she was a librarian and understood me.
Dad worked in the oil field. He taught me what it means to have a good father, and my dad’s influence in my life has been intertwined in my understanding of who God is.
A dictionary sat on the shelf in our living room, so my parents could settle disputes over word spellings and definitions.
I attended the University of Mary Hardin Baylor in Texas where, in 1991, I got a degree in words and spoke I do to this fine man. Now he’s a preacher, and I’m mighty proud of that. It’s my job to make sure his preachin’ shirt is ironed and to button those little buttons on the collar. It’s about the most romantic thing a couple can do together -to work in tandem sharing the good news of Christ. And it doesn’t hurt that he looks mighty fine. Just sayin’.
Now I live in Kalispell, Montana where Glacier National Park is my backyard, and Canadians come down to shop at my Costco.
In Big Sky Country, I am proudly the mother of this beautiful girl, Jayme, who is now Mrs. Dylan Motley.
And I am mother to this tall guy who has the gift of getting out of just about any kind of trouble by using his charm. Caleb is a freshman at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Texas this year, and now I have to admit that I miss his size 11 shoes taking up every inch of floor space in the entryway to my kitchen.
Caleb was the man of honor at his sister’s wedding -one of my sweetest parenting moments ever:
This is our happy family:
We’re full of imperfections, me and this family of mine, but we know God. That makes us rich people who smile a lot.
Thank you for stopping by. I pray God will encourage you as we connect here and draw close to the Lord together.
Hearing from you would make me happy. How do you see God working in your life?
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