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Psalm 46:10

He says, “Be stilland know that I am GodI will be exalted among the nations, 

I will be exalted in the earth.”

II Corinthians 9:10

For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you.

One day, after long weeks of crowded time schedules, worry, pressures, people, and everything in general, I sat down to write a Daily Dose of Encouragement. God spoke above all the racket in my life and  simply said, “Be still and know that I am God.” So I sat and listened as he reminded me of a lesson I desperately needed to remember.

A yearling squirrel sat no more than 8 feet away as I sat on my front porch writing a Daily Dose of Encouragement.  Timidly he approached the corn feeder eyeballing me every step of the way. At first, he only got close enough to nibble on the scattered kernels around the outskirts of the pile. Fearful of his human benefactor he longingly eyed the plentiful pile of corn just beyond his reach.

I sat frozen in place, hoping he’d think I wasn’t even there. But nothing changed. Even in his hunger he continued to sit in doubt. Finally, he inched over to the pile. Slowly, as he saw he could trust my presence, he moved into the full bounty we had put before him. Every once in a while he’d stop, look my way as if to say, “Are you going to hurt me? Did you put this here for me? Can I trust you?”

The more comfortable he became, the more I moved around and let him see my hands at work. I made louder breathing noises, moved my feet, rocked in my chair, and pounded on this keyboard.  Finally, he stopped eating and turned his whole body straight toward me. He looked directly into my face and just sat there quietly. It was as if he was saying “thank you”.  He sat close for so long that my back began to hurt and my dangling feet fell asleep. As the computer flashed a low battery warning, I eased from my chair and slowly walked into the house. The little one scampered away – filled to the brim on the provision given him.

Sometimes in our well doing we forget to just “be”.  Be still and pray…be still and listen for God’s voice.  Realize Who He is. Follow what His still small voice whispers in our heart. He is our benefactor – our provider of all good things.

In my time of intense stress, he used a tiny squirrel to say “slow down” – refocus on what is most important. He reminded me Who He is, and not to be anxious, because He will bring peace to our hearts as we take all our burdens to Him in prayer.

Until next time,

Your Traveling Partner,



Jesus Wept

“When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. And he said, ‘Where have you laid him?’ They said to him, ‘Lord, come and see.’ Jesus wept. So the Jews said, ‘See how he loved him!’”
John 11: 33-36 ESV

I have always remembered John 11:35 ESV “Jesus wept” as the shortest verse in the Bible. When I was a child, if a Sunday school teacher asked us to memorize a verse, someone would jokingly suggest that one because it was the easiest. Also, the question ‘What is the shortest verse of the Bible?’ would come up in trivia, and I always knew the answer! Recently though, this verse has given me a deeper meaning, and it has caused me to see the two words “Jesus wept” in a whole new way.

One evening last fall after the kids were tucked in bed, I was watching TV with my husband, and my phone rang. We both looked at each other because it was the time of night when no one usually calls, and we all know that feeling of dread that washes over us when this happens. I answered the phone and received the shocking news that a young family member of mine had died tragically. This type of life event usually causes us to stop our daily routines and spend time reflecting on questions that we do not normally think about. Over the next days as I drove 18 hours to the funeral and spent time grieving with my family, I struggled with this news and tried to find answers. Through it all I asked God ‘Why weren’t you there?’

In John 11, Mary and her sister Martha had lost their brother, and when Jesus arrived, they both said to him “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died” (John 11:21 and 32 ESV). It strikes me that they asked the same question that I did. Jesus responded in a very human way. He knew God’s plan and what was about to happen, yet he was deeply moved and wept. This scene in the Bible reflects how Jesus is both God and man. He had flesh like us and therefore knew sorrow like we do, and yet he is God and we can go to him for comfort when we are grieving.

The words “Jesus wept” are no longer the answer to a trivia question to me. These two powerful words mean that when I am struggling (and we will experience tragedy on earth), that Jesus is with me and he knows grief too. Jesus is both my savior and comforter, and I am not alone.

Your sister in Christ,

Erin Tabor

On the Way

“As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
Mark 10:17

During a recent trip to Cincinnati, a twenty-something lady sat down beside me on the plane. After a brief response to my greeting, she connected her earphones to her mobile device and put them in her ears. Shortly after takeoff, she added dark glasses to her travel attire and remained plugged in—or should I say out—for the duration of the flight.

I might have been offended had I not been familiar with this hallmark of our day which is fast becoming the norm. I wondered who she was, where she was going, and what her felt need was. We all have them, you know.

On my next connecting flight, a forty-something lady was my seat mate. After our initial greetings, she revealed she was on her way home to offer her final good-bye to her father who’d passed away the day before. For the next hour, we shared portions of our lives, looked at family photos and agreed to become Facebook friends. As we prepared to depart, she thanked me for the conversation that had kept her grief at bay.

“Ships that pass in the night” is a line from a Henry Wadsworth Longfellow poem penned over 150 years ago. You’ve probably heard and used this phrase yourself as you’ve brushed shoulders with someone while you were both on the way to your respective places.

The metaphor speaks of two sailing vessels that pass in the night and shine their lights to acknowledge one another’s presence. After passing, they slip into the darkness, never to see the other again.

The Enemy of this world is a master deceiver. He uses multitudes of devices to create division and separate us from the people God places around us on the way to where we’re going. Satan will stop at nothing to keep us from shining a light into someone’s darkness. Our lights may appear dim. What we do may seem insignificant. But the simple offering of our presence may be all someone needs to keep their flickering flame alive.

Daily, Jesus met the needs of people. Some he met while on the way to the next place. His presence always meant life for their souls.

Who will God place along your path today? On the way, listen to the gentle whisper of his Holy Spirit. Acknowledge someone’s presence with yours. Shine a light into their darkness. Your paths may never cross again.

Starr Ayers



Photo credit: Pixabay image