In His Hands

© Patti Brown

Remembering today how tenderly His strong hands hold me...

Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.
~ Matthew 10:29 ~

I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand.
~John 10:28 ~

Sprinkles of Blessing ~ Telling Our Family Story

Photo Credit

I have been thinking a lot about stories lately. About how I learn best through stories, and tell best through stories.

Because for me, all of life is context. My patient husband will tell of waiting on tenterhooks for the meat of my message to be revealed as I construct a where-I-was-and-how-I-felt-and-who-was-there backdrop. It's not that I don't want to be direct. It just all seems connected to me.

And I think it is all connected because underneath my story, and your story, and all the stories of the world, is the one big story. The story of God and His amazing work in His children.

In my evolving self-awareness as a writer, I have realized that I feel most in my element when I am writing about people, not facts. People are how God tells His story.

As I thought about this and how it impacts me as a writer, I began to also think about it as a mother. It occurred to me that a story is a giving. An old family story told to my children helps them understand more the backdrop that was already constructed for their lives before each began. We find our place in the world in context, not in isolation.

So I've purposed to add depth to their context. This week I am drawing on the memory banks... sharing stories from my life, stories from their early lives that they don't remember, telling of my own grandparents as we vacation in their grandparents' home.

And I am living the story that is my life, with its tears and joys, and wondering how some of my plot twists will turn out.  Yet all the while knowing that, because of Jesus, I will really and truly live happily ever after.

How about you? Do you share family stories? Stories about your life and your walk with God? How are you purposing to bless others this week?

When the Prayers Just Won't Come

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Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Matthew 11:28

We all have seasons in life... times of peace and calm, and times when the wind blows hard. Sometimes life becomes so stormy it is hard to find the words to pray.

These are times when we turn to other believers to ask for help, for sustenance through prayers lifted up on our behalf.  God has also graciously equipped us directly through His Word.

Come to Him... come to His Word... and rest.

Years ago, a wise woman taught me to pray scripture word-for-word. One morning, in a bible study with other young mothers, she asked us to open our bibles to a particular scripture. She told us to pray it aloud together, personalizing it as we went...

I am sharing my thoughts on praying scripture at Do Not Depart today. To read the rest of this post please join us...

Sprinkles of Blessing ~ Saying Yes

It seems so simple, saying yes.

The small people in my house (some of whom are now three inches taller than me) are among my favorite humans in the world. Shouldn't it be easy to say yes to their requests for Lego-play and sewing machine lessons?

Still I find it takes a conscious effort to set aside my to-do list and ignore the pressing refrain in my mind: "But you're behiiinnnd..."

It takes a choice to say yes to my children's non-urgent requests. But once I do, I almost always find the blessing is just as much for me.

I remember that I like following Lego instructions, and watching a vehicle appear in my hands. I sit by in wonder as our daughter confidently takes charge of the sewing machine after a demonstration. And despite thread-tension issues I manage to teach our girl without any Mama-tension!

Now, I know there are situations when "Yes" is not appropriate. I am not advocating catering to a child's every whim.

But "Yes!" can be such a blessing when it builds relationships. When it takes my focus off a task and shifts it to a person.

Choosing "Yes" is how I'm sprinkling this week. How are you showing love in action in your corner of the world?

I'm dropping the linky for now. Would you spur me on to good deeds by sharing in the comments how you are living love this week?

Sprinkles of Blessing ~ Just Dance!

My suggestion for you is really simple this week, my friends.

Just dance.

Yup, dance. Dance with your child, dance with your sweetheart, dance with your mom, or just dance for the Lord.

It doesn't matter if you've got the moves, just dance.

And David danced before the LORD with all his might
~ 2 Samuel 6:14 ~

Express your joy with your body and just dance!
You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; You have loosed my sackcloth and girded me with gladness
~ Psalm 30:11 ~
I think you might be surprised by the results.

If you feel like it, leave a comment or click on "add your link" to link your blog up, and let me know how you are stretching beyond your comfort zone to sprinkle a little joy in your corner of the world.

Have fun!

photo credit: kakisky

Sprinkles of Blessing ~ Something Unexpected

Last week was one of those weeks when things just didn't go as planned. Thank you for extending grace. Now back to our regularly scheduled Monday Sprinkles of Blessing...

Are you ready to have some fun this week as you sprinkle your family? How about trying something totally unexpected? Something seemingly out of place yet fun fun fun!

This week's Sprinkles of Blessing suggestion:


Would an Easter egg hunt at the end of May qualify?  <smile>

We homeschool our children, and traditionally have set Memorial Day weekend as the beginning of our summer break. This year, to celebrate, I thought it would be fun to surprise them with a treasure hunt!

We enjoy Easter egg hunts, but a few years ago the kids and I got to thinking that it was kind of distracting us from what we wanted to be focusing on at Easter. Since we all love the fun of the hunt (and the hiding!) we knew we still wanted to do it, just at another time. I contemplated doing it on the first day of spring but that almost always falls in the middle of Lent, when we are feeling more contemplative. We just couldn't come up with a solution.

Near the end of May it hit me! The first day of summer vacation sure is festive! I didn't tell the kids, just got the hunt ready and put baskets at their seats at the table. I put a book in each basket for summer enjoyment as well.

When they got up they were so surprised and excited. Even the 14 year old! They all enjoyed scurrying around looking for eggs. As always we had one unfound egg, which will surely show up in the next few weeks.

How about you? Do you have some fun summer plans this week with your family? Are you planning anything out of the ordinary? I'd love to read more about your sprinkling adventures!  Link up below (hit click to enter) or leave a comment...

When Things Just Don't Go Right

This morning as I was sitting at my computer counting ticket sales for our daughter's upcoming theater performance, my husband called from the back door, "There's a dead kitten back here."

With a heaviness I put on my boots and went out to view the tiny little body, somehow escaped from her chicken wire safe space, and loved on just too much by our over-eager Great Pyrenees puppy. As I fetched the shovel I shook my head thinking of how much death is part of our life on the farm.

What I had anticipated as a relaxing first week of school vacation has proven to be an exhausting week of ill-health and crisis. Nothing has gone the way I expected, from my body's functioning to our family's schedule to blogging here.

We all have weeks like this, sometimes even years. Maybe it's just a string of things that don't go right, but sometimes it includes great loss and tragedy. And in the middle of it all there is much temptation to despair.

There is a peace when things are in order, not only in the physical realm, but also in our minds. And when that order gets rifled through, it is sometimes hard to hold on to serenity.

I confess I have had my moments this week. I would love to tell you that I have had perfect self-control and was able to turn peacefully to the Lord for all my needs, but the fact is there have been a few tear-filled sessions.

I want to share with you a few things I have done this week that have helped. To be honest, I write this mostly so I can look back at it when another week like this hits me. It is so hard sometimes to remember what to do when you are in the middle of a crisis.


I have changed the sleep rules this week. Half way through the week I stopped setting my alarm. Blessedly, it took only a few days of oversleeping for my internal clock to be reset. This morning, without an alarm, I woke right up at 4:00am.

I also have been napping whenever I feel tired and am at home. Most of the time I just lie down on the couch so the children have easy access to me (and yes that means the naps have been interrupted, but it is still extra sleep). A few times I actually laid down in bed.


I have discovered that I am chronically dehydrated. This has led to several health problems that are quite annoying. When I am home I am setting a timer for every hour, and drinking an 8oz glass of water standing right there in the kitchen. When I go out I am taking a bottle of iced water with lemon to make drinking more appealing.

Lots of Salad

This may sound silly, but I have been craving and consuming huge amounts of salad. I believe it's my body's way of helping me restore internal balance. I never get a heavy feeling after eating a salad like I do after many other meals. To keep my protein levels even, I add bits of meat or cheese or sunflower seeds.


Yes, of course I have been praying, but sometimes when you are so low you find it hard to know how to pray for yourself. In these moments I reach out to others and ask for prayer. There is tremendous grace in God's allowing others to intercede for us. Perhaps it is part of His design for us as a body. I rarely struggle to pray for others even when I am struggling to pray for myself.

Be Obsessive About Bible Time

With so much on my mind this week, there have been several mornings when I have allowed myself to become distracted before getting in the Word, and my time of study has suffered. My peace has suffered too. There is nothing like the living and active Word of God to put everything into perspective. I want to start my day with right thinking, not distracted by my worries and to-do list, or by the current bad news online. Penny at Living Above Ministries recently wrote a great post about this... What Do You Open First?.

Let Go

This one is the hardest for me. This week I have had to let go of a number of things I had planned to do, including blogging. It is very hard for me to do this without feeling guilty and like a failure. Yet I would be the first to encourage this very thing in anyone else. Sometimes the person I have the hardest time extending grace to is myself.

How about you? When you run into one of those weeks, what do you do to make it through and remain peaceful?

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