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The Secret For Unleashing God’s Peace In Your Situation – #BEaNOTICER

February 21, 2014

I’ll never forget the night I helped my son edit his college term paper. Something he wrote was so powerful it jumped off my computer screen, grabbed my heart, and challenged my perspective.

If there was ever a secret for unleashing God’s powerful peace in a situation, it’s developing a heart of true thanksgiving. My son, Jackson, knows this.

#BEaNOTICER Challenge

The truly thankful person is a truly peaceful person. They have made a habit no matter what to notice, pause and choose.

Notice something for which to be thankful no matter what circumstance they’re in.

Pause to acknowledge this something as a reminder of God’s presence.

Choose to focus on God’s presence until His powerful peace is unleashed.

Jackson’s paper was about the corruption and greed that caused the civil war in his native land – Liberia, Africa. He did a great job recounting the facts of the story. But the difference between Jackson and most other kids explaining a historical event is before we adopted him, he lived in the midst of the horrific conditions of this war.

During one part of the paper, he described what it felt like to be naked digging through the trash looking for the treasure of thrown away food.

The treasure of thrown away food.

I can hardly type those words without crying. This is my son.

And yet, despite the horrific conditions of his childhood there was an unexplainable thread of peace woven throughout his recollection of the story. A powerful peace centered in the awareness of God’s presence.

I doubt any of us will find our treasure in thrown away food today. But will we be a noticer, a pauser, a chooser – a person of thanksgiving no matter what circumstance we’re facing?

I find this truth about the power of thanksgiving over and over in Scripture. What was the prayer Daniel prayed right before being thrown into the lion’s den and witnessing God miraculously shut the lions’ mouths? Thanksgiving.

After three days in the belly of a fish, what was the cry of Jonah’s heart right before he was finally delivered onto dry land? Thanksgiving.

How are we instructed to pray in Philippians 4:6 when we feel anxious? With thanksgiving.

And what is the outcome of each of these situations where thanksgiving is proclaimed? Peace. Powerful, unexplainable, uncontainable peace.

“And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus,” (Philippians 4:7).

Interestingly enough, one of Webster’s official definitions of thanksgiving is: “a public acknowledgment or celebration of divine goodness.”

Will you join me in celebrating God’s divine goodness today?

This week I’ve been posting about how to #BEaNOTICER (click here if you missed the first post, and here if you missed the second post.) Our final focus of this challenge is to be a noticer of the treasures in our hard circumstances.

Leave a comment below telling me how you are cultivating a heart of thanksgiving and seeing God in your struggle today. I’m choosing 3 winners for my #BEaNOTICER giveaway, which includes a copy of Unglued, Unglued Devotional: 60 Days to Imperfect Progress, and a set of Unglued key tags.

You can also share what you’re doing to be a noticer on social media. If you’re on Instagram or Twitter, post a picture and tag me @LysaTerKeurst using the hashtag… #BEaNOTICER.

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145 Comments
  1. Chantle Uthe

    My heart of thanksgiving is in the daily life of struggle. I struggle with coming to God my Father and trusting Him. That I am taking care of no matter what. I have a part time job and as the end of each month gets closer I struggle with knowing that I might not make it but my thanksgiving comes when I see that He has provided for me and that He has not left me.

    Reply
  2. Norma Cooper

    Two years ago I lost my only daughter, she was 33 years old.
    Even now I can hardly bear the pain of her loss.
    Four months after she passed away I was pressured (and that is the way it was ) into travelling to Cambodia to set up a medical room in her memory at a school that caters for HIV children..
    Did it make a difference, well it did not make the pain of loss go away, but it did make me thankful. Thankful that we have a proper roof to live under, a bed to sleep in, food on our table, medical assistance when we need it.
    I will be making my third trip this year, I am so thankful, that God choose this path for me, and I know that my daughter would have loved these people, cuddled the babies and played with the children. I am doing what she would have done had she lived.
    Thank you Lord.

    Reply
    • Anne Peterson

      Norma,
      I was touched by your response. I’m sorry for your loss but what you have decided to do is so wonderful. You extended your daughter’s presence by doing what she would have done. Even picturing her holding these precious little ones is so comforting. Thanks for sharing.

      Reply
  3. Lisa D

    My hearts cry is to be at peace and to be filled with joy. Sometimes I just cry out Jesus name because I don’t have the words, and my drive to work is my time with God where I have “Oceans” on repeat crying out to Him. My husband recently confided in me that he is not in love with me and not attracted to me. Although I am still deeply hurt and confused, I know that God has a plan for me and I’m thankful that His plan is far better than mine. By remaining obedient to Him, even when the world hurts, He will show my children through the work He is doing in me the reward and blessing of that faithfulness. I do see God in my struggle – He is the only one I am able to talk to about this and is my strength each day. For this I am thankful.
    .

    Reply
  4. Lucy S

    Tonight was hard. I have a raging migraine, yet I pressed on in leading devotions for our children. Our youngest unloaded some unkind comments onto her sister in response to one of the questions in our devotion book. My husband then decided the exchange was somehow my fault because I was leading the devotions! I was NOT happy about his attitude since I feel leading is HIS job, not mine. I was able to keep my mouth shut and in quietness before God, I was reminded of HIS perfect love for me. I know if my husband is due correction, it needs to come from God, not me. Even bigger than the “husband situation” is my daughters attitude toward her sister. I pray God will change her heart to be tender and loving to her sister.

    Thank you for your encouragement, Lysa!

    Reply
  5. Emily

    I’ve been struggling with a hand injury that has made it difficult to do ordinary everyday things. I knew God was teaching me through this, but I was having trouble thanking Him even though I knew that He is good, faithful, and sovereign. So one day while I was reading God’s Word, God revealed some of His character and just general blessings like music, laughter, and beauty. I wrote them down so that every time I pray and I want to be thankful but can’t think of anything, I can refer to that list. It has opened my eyes to the blessings that surround me even when my circumstances are unpleasant.

    Reply
  6. Christine Dreger

    cultivating a heart of thanksgiving in the midst of struggle,,,,it’s a hard task. The struggle that has become a part of my life in the past 8 months is a scar that travels from my palm to the base of shoulder of my right arm, it isn’t very pretty. For this scar I have become thankful for as it is a sign of God’s everpresent grace that I am still alive and have a viable, working limb. At the beginning of this past summer I was admitted into the hospital with Necrotizing fascitiis, I was close to losing my arm if not my life. Each and every morning thru the stiffness and aches, I see a very large scar which reminds me that God has given me a gift…..life. Each day I get to wake up and see my four precious kids and I am reminded to be thankful for a scar that says I am alive to be the mother that they need.

    Reply
  7. Gina McGee

    Since I have been living from “hand to mouth” for the last 3 months since lost my job with not enough money to even pay my rent except for 3 Charities helping me, I have notice a change in my heart and outlook. With my previous career , I never lacked or wanted for anything and now to be in charity lines is most humbling but I found myself talking to the others in need and noticing there were no smiles . I’d strike up a conversation and some just unloaded there hearts to my , some started crying and other were so bitter they would even respond to anything. I took the leading from God who would he have me help by talking to them. It was amazing how our little talk lifted them and myself up to hope, better days and God has not forgotten is. With this I am most of the time compelled to give a dollar if I have one to some homeless person stand on a corner holding a sign for help. I don’t have enough to give, I pray after I give for them. Since I’ve been it this conditioning am more acutely aware of others less fortunate than I because I have god and His promises over my life, that’s why I keep saying ” I am truly blessed and favored!”

    Reply
  8. Lori

    My heart hurts for my daughter as she is facing some medical issues. I know what a struggle she is, and will continue, to go through. But I just keep thanking our Lord and Savior, for one day we will have no pain, no sorrow, no tears. We are so loved by him. The Almighty knows my name, knows my thoughts, and stills my heart. How awesome is He.

    Reply
  9. Hellen

    Just over a year ago I downloaded a gratefulness app onto my cell phone. At first ti took a conscious choice to add things to it. Then it became something that I’d be excited to go to when noticing things to be grateful for. It’s definitely a challenge sometimes to see something to be grateful for in the midst of a difficult time, but such a blessing to learn to do so.

    Reply
  10. Dawn Riel

    Been struggling with just being a mom of a teenager. To make sure my heart stayed thankful and calm through this year, I started a “Blessings Jar”. It sits on my coffee table and I invite all who see it to join in. Every time my heart is off track, I try to get my focus back on God and His blessings by writing down a blessing and placing it in the jar!

    Reply
    • Cindy Fox

      Good idea, Dawn. Thank you for sharing. I share probably the same struggle as you – just being a mom to my 17 year old daughter. I sometimes feel like I can’t be a mom. 🙁 That’s when I need to refocus, because I am a mom!! God continue to bless you richly as you pursue Him!

      Reply
  11. Lynnette N.

    I am cultivating a heart of thanksgiving in my life by conditioning myself to have a lifestyle of praise and worship. Oftentimes, we come to God when we need His help, or something from Him; but I know from the depths of my spirit that God is all seeing, all knowing all the time. And in knowing this, I give thanks whether my natural circumstances are what I desire or not. I embrace the fact that through His grace that I have salvation, and God’s unending love for me takes precedence over any current situation. I consistently remind myself that God love’s me, and that along helps to shield my mind. I am also shaping my mind to appreciate the simple things like: being able to breathe properly, and being able to see my daughter’s face, and having a mind to pray. On the days where my spirit is off track, I go back and think about the things that He has done before, and I know that if things do not always work out the way I imagine that He is always able. Having a heart of thanksgiving, is a actually a tool of warfare and a great defense!

    Reply
  12. sammie perkins

    I heard about a coworker who’s home burned to the ground,and now he was homeless and also fighting prostate cancer but, not one time did he complain about his circumstances. He remained grateful. When you see people going through trials and remaining constant in their faith, it helps you stay faithful and learn how to praise your way through also!

    Reply
  13. val

    I can literally go into panic mode if I don’t start talking to God when my breathing issues arise. Being a noticer means that I start by thanking God for giving me life and then I branch out and pray that he will develop Godly character in me by praying scripture. Then I pray scripture over my husband, my daughter and my two sons. Then I pray scripture over my pastor and his family and church members that I know. Then I pray for unsaved family and friends. Sometimes I have to thumb through my concordance to find specific passages to help guide my prayers. When I do this, I have peace. I feel blessed to have had the opportunity to pray and know that my current tough circumstances are softening my heart: giving me a hunger for God and a love for others that would not have developed in the same way had everything in my life continued to be easy and good. God is good.

    Reply
  14. Teresa Tompkins

    I had an addiction to gambling and proud to say it’s been over a year since I’ve gambled in any shape, form or fashion (I give the Glory to God that the desire of gambling has been taken away.) But, I did some things I was very ashamed of to support my addiction. God never let go of me; I December, 2012 and January, 2013 I was under such conviction, I could barely fuction with the simple things. When I finally obedient to what God was telling me to do – own up to your mistakes to the people you’ve done wrong. I thought the outcome was going to be totally different, but it wasn’t, God set me free and I’ve been forgiven – THANKFUL FOR HIS GRACE!

    Reply
  15. maribeth

    I really enjoy the spiritual reminders from your blog. Last night we had a situation with one of our kids where she discovered, to her horror, she was in a field trip group with boys instead of her friends (she’s 10 so it is still a love hate thing with the boys). As promised I checked on her when I came to bed and took a moment, with hand on her head to pray for her. A prayer with thanksgiving for the girl I begged God for. We try everyday to model thankfulness and gratitude to the saviour. This was just one more time to do so.

    Reply
  16. Michelle Eigemann

    Yesterday was a rough day. God is stretching, molding and shaping me in ways that bring a lot of pain and daily tears. I know it is something that is necessary for to endure in this season of my life.
    I found myself begging god for deliverance from the
    painful thoughts of feeling unloved, unwanted and unworthy (feelings i’ve been battling since childhood)
    But it was in that moment that I turned my sorrow into praise of thanksgiving because you see every time I acknowledge those feelings and hand them over to God he is then able to transform them from tears to treasures. Today I thank God for the season of opportunity I have been given to grow into less of
    me and more of Christ and through this I am hoping for complete restoration of my wounded soul and the
    relationship that I poured so much poison into. God
    has a plan and although the pain seems at time
    unbearable I know that he is right beside me
    encouraging me to seek his face and praise his holy
    name with words of thanksgiving.

    Reply
  17. BC

    Between your blog and MTC bible study, I realized that something in my past needed to be addressed in my life. Though my mom never knew about the abuse I think i still blamed and needed to forgive her. I forgave the abuser long ago, I never realized I had the resentment t of my mom, who I love dearly. She didn’t protect me. She never knew and never will, it been 45 years, it would only cause her great pain. I have come to realize I need to forgive and be thankful for the God loving mother I have so I can have the peace God wants for me.

    Reply
  18. Mimi

    Finding peace and joy – true contentment – is resting in the thankfulness. On the days when I’m running around like a chicken with my head cut off (which seems to be a lot of my days lately) I do try to be mindful of the tings for which I am thankful – more than that, I try to make sure I let others know when and what I appreciate in them. I am in the midst of grading ninth grade research papers – a time-consuming, laborious task – but I find peace in thanking God for allowing me the blessing of sharing in the lives of these kids each day.

    Reply
  19. Jane Stoddard

    Thank you! A friend died who was only 58 and it bummed me out. Yet, she was so full of life, joy, hugs and just great to be around. Because of this #BEanoticer, I am thankful for the time she was here and I do know she is with Jesus as I type. Would she come back here if she knew how sad we are? I think not, she is in the heart of God and I wouldn’t leave either. Thanks again.
    Blessings Eph 1:3-14
    Janie

    Reply
  20. Marlene

    Cultivating a heart of thankfulness hasn’t come naturally! There’s times in my journey when I’m leaning hard on Christ and He makes it easier to be thankful when I really feel like complaining about stretched finances, tweens with attitude and busy schedules. Thankfully I see God working in my attitude more and more! When I don’t lean hard on Jesus, my overwhelmed not so thankful attitude can take over!

    Reply
  21. Glenda

    I lost my son 3 months ago to a sudden illness. It has been the hardest thing I have ever gone through. I don’t understand why God took him home, but I do know that God never allows things to happen that is not filtered through his love. This tragedy has changed me and brought me closer to God. Every time I hear of a child’s death I pray for the parents because I know what they are going through. God has put many Christian friends and a Christian husband in my life to help me through this. I am thankful that I had 35 wonderful years with my son and the last 3 months of his life we talked about God and his relationship with Jesus. I know he was a Christian and he is in heaven now and much better off than he was here on earth. I’m thankful for the hope we have in Jesus Christ.

    Reply
    • Libbie

      Glenda,
      THANK YOU for encouraging me…and I’m sure, so many others. Your story reminds me that God will NEVER leave us or forsake us. I am the mother of sons, and I salute you. 🙂
      May God richly bless you…

      Reply
  22. Laurie G

    Cultivating a heart of thanksgiving with my “Joy Dare” journal! I have been battling fear for several months – irrational sometimes… and in the winter I have discovered that I wrestle with the SADD. Especially when those things are pressing in and threaten to undo me, I pull out my Joy Dare book and start listing things that I am thankful for – little things, big things, out of the ordinary things, things present, things past. Sometimes it is simply a list of verses from scripture that speak truth to my soul!

    Reply
  23. TSM

    I lost my job in December after 8 1/2 years. I’m a single mother and felt like God had played a joke on me. Some days I don’t won’t to face another day, but then I read your post and find the strength to make it. Even though I lost my job, God continues to provide for us. My faith is truly being tested, but I find that it’s getting stronger daily. If you read this please say a prayer for me and my family. Thanks!

    Reply
  24. Jennifer

    I love this series so much…it’s been helping me to start my days off with my eyes open!
    One thing that has definitely been a choice in my, and my husband’s, life lately has been to be thankful we have the time to spend with our kids that we do! I homeschool our kids (which can be crazy stressful at times), and we opened our own business last spring, and while it’s been a humongous stressor financially, we’ve been setting it up for the last couple of months for each of our 5 kids to get to spend a whole week at our shop with their dad, in rotation. I can’t imagine what it means to each of them, but I do know for he and I, it’s been a reminder of how unique, creative, beautiful, and just altogether special each of them are, and how blessed we really are, despite our current financial difficulties. I love that 🙂

    Reply
  25. Deb

    I’m actually very thankful to have a choice even in most unpleasant situations.Usually I can choose to handle it a number of different ways, including in a negative way or positive way.

    Reply
  26. Cindy

    This is something I needed to read today.

    This is something I needed to read this week.

    Thank you for sharing and giving me the much needed reminder to open up my eyes.
    I promise today to try to find the treasures in my life.

    Reply
  27. Micki

    Today I am sitting at the bedside of my husband at Hospice House,trying to keep my focus on God’s many gifts. In these last few days of his life I am noticing how precious each moment is, how he whispers “Thank you” to each nurse and care partner when they do something for him, how often he says “I love you” to family and friends who visit,and how he is anticipating a heavenly reunion with his Lord and with our son. Pausing to pray my gratitude for these things and so many more is infusing this tough situation with peace.

    Reply
    • Rebecca

      I was recently given the bad news that my Nana (whom I am very close to) was diagnosed with cancer and the outcome looks grim according to the Dr. I am looking at this as an opportunity to see Gods power at work. I am unsure if she is saved and so I have prayed for her salvation and I am trusting God. I have to see all the good that God can do in the midst of this situation or I could become overwhelmed and break. I have the chance to spend more time with this wonderful woman and create memories. I wont have to regret the missed opportunities. God is giving me us the gift of time. #IamANOTICER

      Reply
    • Rebecca

      Dear sister in Christ, I am praying for you and your family. I am praying for peace and provision for you, Gods love to surround you, the Holy Spirit to comfort you, and for you to be strengthened in His power and might.
      You are inspiring.
      It is a beautiful thing to see your lovely heart revealed in the words you typed. You must be a blessing to your family.

      Reply
  28. Michele Morin

    Noticing is key. Intentional slowing down and writing down and praying back thanks for little things every day, several times a day. I do forget to do this, and it is always obvious when I do.

    Reply
  29. Liz

    This is something that happened a couple years ago. My husband hurts his back and had to take a medical retirement at age of 36. Due to this we lost income which caused us to file for bankruptcy and foreclosure of our home. In the midst of this stressful situation our church hurt us deeply. It will be two years ago this spring that we left that church and looked for a new one. It was the best blessing ever! My husband & I’s relationship with Christ has grown in more ways then I can count. Looking back I am able to thank Him repeatedly over and over for the struggles we went through so we can be closer to Him. Our pastor gave a sermon not long ago on thanksgiving. When you give thanks you will start feeling better about things. Well that is 100% truth. It can be as small as thank you for allowing me to get up from bed, for the sun shining, my the hurt I feel. God is so good to us, thank him today!

    Reply
  30. Margaret

    I am practicing this through my current health challenge. The shingles on my face has recurred causing pain around my eye. I am thankful that I had the anti-viral on hand and didn’t have to wait for a doctors appointment to start taking it. I am hopeful that this will prevent the blisters from developing so I do not have to start more treatment to prevent issues with my vision.

    Reply
  31. Vanessa warren

    I lost my dad almost a month ago and pain is so great. He my rock the best man I knew. Wonderful testimony for God and he never met stranger. He put his life online for you type guy. He had cancer, but he passed after getting a cold to a flu and then everything started fail. God took him out his suffering. I know in better place, but we left here not better place without him. I had a server rough time since September in my marriage and life and because some mistakes I was not able get in time say goodbye my father. I am thanking God he out pain as suffered daily from cancer. So hard. I can’t be with my mom I live in another state I have obligations don’t allow me to be able just pack up move back by her. I have so many decision to make and each one could impact someone and the thoughts my head wants explode most days. God is good he will carry me threw this season.

    Reply
  32. Irene

    Through tears I read this story. My husband has a little brother, through the big brother big sister program & this story reminds me of when he came to our house & looked into our pantry. He said “WHOA! You have A LOT of food!” I’ve looked in & often thought it looks half bare.. Yet the eyes of a child that lacks, opens our eyes so much more than he will ever realize. He is more of a blessing in our life than we could ever be in his. This fall my husband, son, & I will be participating in a camp for abused & neglected children. I am thankful for this article to be a NOTICER, to be mindful of their plight, to be thankful for all that’s Gods given me, & to be blessed by their presence. To take my mind off my own issues, which seem so small compared to those truly hurting with greater issues. Thank you so much for this article, it spoke to me in ways that you will never know.. #PerfectTiming #GodStillSpeaks #GratefulForGrace

    Reply
  33. Anne Peterson

    Having lost my sister to domestic violence God drew me close to him. She disappeared in 1982. Eight years ago we went to trial and her husband was found not guilty. We like having free will when it pertains to us, not so much when it enables others to make hurtful decisions. Still with this loss, the loss of my mother when I was 16, the loss of my father 8 years later, and the loss of two brothers, one to cancer and one last year at this time to a massive heart attack I want to say God is good. He is caring and loving. I recently wrote my sister’s story because I felt led to do so. I would love to see it encourage the hearts of those who are in unhealthy relationships. God loves me, of this I am confident. He trusts me to trust Him. And I do.

    Reply
  34. Courtney

    I am at a place in my life where I’m looking back and seeing the life I used to live and after living in regret so much and trying so much to change by myself I’m coming to realize that changing myself is not possible. Not true change. My mother-in-law and I spoke about some things yesterday that really hit home with me and made me realize that when God got Paul’s (for instance) attention, Paul did a complete 360. He immediately turned around and changed his path. I haven’t been doing that. I thought there were rules and regulations you had to live by in order to live the life of a christian and so I’ve been trying to follow the rules instead of just letting Him love me even though I’m still a sinner. I’ve been trying to follow all the rules and to be honest it’s been reeking havoc on my life as well as others. I’ve been so concerned with changing my ways that I haven’t thought about my children’s needs. There physical needs were being met, but what about they’re spiritual needs. What type of mother would God be proud of? I’ve not been living it. If I continue trying to live for myself, I’m going to cause the same damage to all 3 of them that I did to the first. It’s not about me anymore. I want to NOTICE each moment with them. My family is my prayer of thanksgiving. God blessed with them because somehow He knew if I put Him first, He would take care of the rest and would help ME to meet the needs that I, as a mother, can and should when I lift them up to Him and keep them in HIs care.

    Reply
  35. Kelly VanHoosear

    Today I am choosing to trust him in my job search, our money issues and decisions that need to be made. Please Lord help me to trust you and know you have a plan and a purpose for everything! Thank you Jesus!

    Reply
  36. Blanca Reyes

    I am a single mom and going full time to school. I haven’t had a job since July of last year. I am searching and applying almost every day for one, but nothing. My kids have been really sick with the flu and stomach virus, I see how God hasn’t given me a job because of this. If I’d have a job I would have been absent from all these illnesses but I am able to take care of my children because I am here with them and not working. Thank you Lord because only you know what’s best for me!!

    Reply
  37. Ruth

    This series so resonates with my hearts cry. 3 years ago overwhelmed with health issues and facing an extremely stressful situation at the church where my husband was the youth pastor I felt completely done. I spent many moments on my knees and in tears trying to figure things out on my own. Finally I stopped struggling a decided to just let God, well be God. (you would think that eventually I’d figure that one out). A song popped into my head, one my Mom used to sing in the 70’s & 80’s and it used to drive me crazy. This time it sent me running for my Bible, I was pretty sure it was based on a verse. Isaiah 61:3 – “He gave me beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning and a garment of praise for a spirit of heaviness.” Right there, at that moment, it literally transformed my life. In the ensuing months after 15 years my husband stepped down from ministry and took a 6 month sabbatical. I started back to work full-time, The stresses in our lives didn’t just vanish but my heart radically changed. There have been many moments where it has been a challenge to look past our circumstances. When I stop and thank God I see all the ways he is at work in my life and I am amazed. His peace allows me to work through the moment and I realize how truly blessed I am.

    Reply
  38. Kiji McDaniel

    Thank you – thank you – thank you!!!!! That was the most beautiful, most sad, most wonderful post I’ve read in a long time. I want to be a Noticer. So often I’m the grumbler. Really, thank you. I’m reading “Hand’s Free Mama” and that is basically the meaning of the book. Be a notice.

    Reply
  39. Lindsay

    I am a very busy person. Though I don’t have any children, I love to be available for volunteer opportunities within my church community, as well as serving on various committees. However in the last week, I’ve had to rearrange my entire schedule because my dad had to have double-bypass surgery. And since then, with some struggles, I’ve been faced with a hard truth. Although I love being a missionary, this beautiful family that God has blessed me with will ALWAYS come first! I am thankful for this time we have spent together in each other’s presence, regardless of how difficult it’s been!

    Reply
  40. Libbie

    Lysa, I’ve been a grateful person for as long as I can remember. It’s easy and natural for me to see God’s mercy (and even humor) in most situations. My daily journal usually starts with, “thank You.” And yet, peace alludes me in one situation.
    I’ve memorized and meditated on every scripture pertaining to God’s PEACE, but I am STILL unable to receive it (peace) in one circumstance. (I know that this comment is to be about thankfulness (and it sort of is), but I’m not getting anywhere with this issue, and I’m desperate to overcome it. I’m hoping you can help.)
    The issue occurs when I become worried about one of my five sons. They range in age from 18-28 and I totally fall apart when I can’t reach one of them and I fear that they may be hurt or worse. My heart begins to race and panic ensues. I’ve not always been like this, but it is getting consistently worse. Why can’t I get a grip on this? When it even starts, I quote scripture, rebuke the enemy and follow Philippians 4:6-7. What am I missing?? I’m hoping you (or someone reading this) can help.

    Reply
    • Rebecca

      It sounds like you are a mother who deeply loves her children. God has blessed your sons with a mother who cares about their well being and seeks good for them. Momma, I have a question to ask you. Do you think you are trusting God to care for, protect, and provide for your children? Are you praying for protection, provision, and peace in their lives? God commands His angels to guard and protect us in all our ways of obedience. (Psalm 91:11) He blesses and prospers what we put our hand to. (Deuteronomy 30:9, Jeremiah 29:11)
      2 Timothy 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. Psalm 91 is fantastic to pray over your children’s lives.
      I do hope this has been helpful. You did a good job raising them. God can redeem all things and He will be true to His word.

      Reply
      • Libbie

        Thank you, Rebecca, for taking the time to reach out to me. I appreciate it so much, and will certainly consider and ponder all that you shared. I know that God is able.
        May God greatly bless you for your encouraging heart. 🙂

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  41. Nancy Silvers

    I have been struggling with a debilitating illness for longer then I would like to admit. Finally, after three different specialist there is a name and treatment for my illness. Common Variable Immunoglobulin Deficiency. What it means basically is I have a seriously repressed immune system. The treatment is Immunglobulin Infusions weekly, for the rest of my life. I had the first treatment this past Wed and had some rather yucky side affects but rather then focus on the negative side affects I am choosing to praise God for His presence in my situation and that I am on the road to recovery. There are many who have it much worse than me and I pray I can be sensitive enough to see them and reach out to them with the love of Jesus that I am receiving 🙂

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  42. Joyce

    I have started the journey to be thankful a few months ago after reading Nancy Leigh DeMoss’s book, Choosing Gratitude. What amazing insights and convictions. When I feel stress begin, I stop and remember “Be still and know that I am God”. Get in tune with the Spirit and wait a little.
    Thanks for all you do.

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  43. Tami

    Thank you for this beautiful post and the wonderful picture. This concept is something my therapist has been pounding into my head for 6 years. I suffer from PTSD. So today, I forwarded him a copy of your post!!!

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  44. Louise

    Our ladies group is doing Lysa’s study What happens when women say yes to God. It’s great! I love that she addresses our wayward hearts. I will share this with the ladies in our group. Thanks to God!

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  45. Rubi

    I, like so many others, struggle with negative thoughts. Lately, those negative thoughts have been coming out of my mouth in very negative words. Just yesterday, God brought it to my attention just how much of a complainer I’ve become. Jeez, it that a hard realization to come to… :-/ Thank you for your encouraging words.

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  46. Jen

    I am more and more aware of the gift of kind people in my life, placed there as if they were wrapped with a bow from God. the timing is always incredible. when I am coming into a storm, God always extends his love in the form of a gentle soul to hold me, physically, emotionally, spiritually. I know the storms are part of my life, but the loving arms of angels are a miraculous gift.

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  47. Becca

    Through a small group when my children were little and my husband was in nursing school, God started teaching me the discipline of giving thanks. I was essentially a single parent with a teenager [my husband who was working and going to school full-time], my son age 8 [with Asperger’s] and my girls ages 3 and 1. My break through moment was cleaning up a poopie mess in the floor and thanking God that it was a hardwood floor and hard-pebbly poo so that clean up was easy. I have lived the truth of this post through nursing school, a heart procedure in a foreign country and a heart transplant for my husband. I share this truth with as many people as I can as often as I can. Giving God thanks and seeing His blessings will get you through times you can’t see how you will get through.

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  48. Sherry

    Thank you for this insight! I have given thanks in the midst of trying circumstances, but haven’t experienced the peace God promised and wondered what was missing. Here you have showed me — recognizing God’s presence and hand in the situation and choosing to focus on His presence instead of the circumstance. So hard to do but so necessary! Thank you!

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  49. Kathleen Arementano

    I am thankful for the treasures of Parkinson’s Disease: caring doctors, medicine to help my symptoms, my wonderful husband who encourages me and lifts my spirits, four loving children who are concerned and helpful, and the ability to help myself stay strong through exercise.

    But peace is the most exciting treasure I have—knowing that no matter how this menacing monster will ravage my body I’m going to be okay because God is holding my hand and walking this journey with me. I love being able to tell people I’m not afraid or worried about what this disease is going to do to me because of God’s presence, promises and love.

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  50. Susan

    What a word in due season! I was feeling very overwhelmed by all that was going on around me. We need a new water heater, son#2 (who has ADHD) was melting down, somehow we have acquired a colony of box elder bugs and all while I am struggling to decide between homeschool and affording private school. After reading your post the nix elders, water heater and son are @ Jesus’ feet and I am feeling thankful for a high priest who can sympathize with my weaknesses. The schooling is also at His feet. I will be thankful today for all our many blessings and a history of provision and answered prayers!

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  51. Sheila

    I am asking God to give me peace in my current situation. I am spending more quiet time with God and learning to be thankful for the positive changes that can come out of this change. God is giving me the gift of peace as I focus on Him while I am struggling to make sense of this change. Thank you for Notice, Pause, Choose this really helped me today. I will notice the positive. I Pause to acknowledge this as a reminder that My God is with me today and I will Choose to focus on My God’s presence until the powerful peace is released. God Bless you! Thank you

    Reply
    • Ragan mcderment

      Trying to not let my “passion” become my “possession”. Remembering as Psalm 127 tells me that He is building it not me. Starting in his grace today!!!

      Reply
  52. Linda

    My husband of 9 years has stage 4 heart failure. He functions daily on only 1/3 of his heart. He is in pain all of the time. His physical activity is very limited. We live each day dealing with the anger and depression that tries to take over. But I give thanks in each little joy and smile that we experience in each day. My greatest joy is in knowing that when my husband’s days here on earth are done, he will rejoice with our Savior in heaven. And one day I will be reunited with him forever. But that doesn’t mean that I also have times that I forget to be thankful. I am thankful that the Lord gave me the wonderful ladies of Proverbs 31 ministries devotions to lift me up and remind me that God is always with me and that He has given me this trial to make me a stronger person so that my testimony for Him is stronger. I can reach out and cry unto Him and His peace over comes my sorrow.

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  53. Julia

    Thank you for sharing this great reminder! I needed to hear that today! I needed the reminder to pause and notice the goodness of God even in difficult situations and depressing weather. Thank you for the reminder to give thanks in all circumstances as it says in 1 Thessalonians 5:18

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  54. Brandi Rennemeyer

    I was going to write about my struggle with the tiresome parts of motherhood- and how nearly dying to give my children life has made me thankful for the struggle. Then I started reading all of the previous comments. What amazing women you all are! What strength, what faith!! I am so very encouraged by your gratitude attitudes, I am inspired by your perseverance, and I am in awe of the faithfulness of God. What testimonies!! And I am grateful for this place to share them!! We will overcome by the word of our testimonies!!

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  55. Stacy

    I am thankful for humor to get us thru our days. This may not be the best post to share this, but I was getting my annual lady physical done and started laughing on the table when I remembered your story about falling off the table. The Dr. probably wondered what was going on with me. So thanks for the laugh, again. 🙂

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  56. Crystal Storms

    During my hardest times are when I have felt God’s presence the most because it was during those times I desperately called out to Him. So no matter the situation, those times have encouraged me to look for His hand in every situation – good or bad – knowing He walks with me (Psalm 16:8)

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  57. Kirsten

    I find the busy-ness of 3 kids under 5 the most exhausting part of my life right now, and I can tend to get impatient and frustrated with them so easily. Taking a few minutes each day to do an activity, read a book, play a game or talk to each of them individually has really helped me focus on the things I’m thankful for about each of them instead of focusing on the mess and chaos that are often following in their wake.

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  58. Lauren

    Today I am exhausted and discouraged. This blog is exactly what I needed to hear, to help me refocus and see my circumstances through the lense of a grateful heart. Today I will chose to praise God in all things even if it doesent seem authentic. Instead of feeling sorry for myself that my husband is working so much, I will thank God that he has a job that is providing a way for me to be a stay at home mom. Instead of feeling sorry for myself that I am so tired I will thank God for the beautiful baby who is waking me up and for my three other beautiful kids who are energetic.. yes but are also wonderfully entertaining! Wow I already feel better 🙂 God is so good and worthy if our praise. Thanks for the reminder!

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  59. Cindy Fox

    Thank you for sharing this very personal testimony of your son, Lysa. Praise God for his fine example. I am trying to be more thankful and to more quickly change my focus to God from the negative circumstances, words etc. Praise is a powerful weapon; we must use it frequently – even before things happen. Talking to myself here, too. 🙂

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  60. Judy Gores

    I am driving to AZ from WA to be with my Dad as he undergoes surgery for pancreatic cancer. I am so thankful that I have a Dad who is a believer. I am thankful I have sisters and a brother taking this journey with me. I am thankful for the peace I feel when I trust the Lord in all circumstances.

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  61. Karolee

    Thank you for your testimony! I am trying to remember to always be present in the spirit so that I can always find the “good” in any and all circumstances! I pray so often through the day that I find it easier and easier to change the thought process of my circumstances. It’s just a beautiful thing to feel Thankful!!! 🙂

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  62. Deb

    I remember looking for the attitude of gratitude as I read through my Bible one year – brought about a new perspective on my view of life! Thanks for the reminder to be thankful in/for all things! Blessings to Jackson for the wisdom to learn this at such a young age!

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  63. Heather

    When my anxious mind begins whirling I pause and begin to thank God by noticing what’s right in front of me and around me. Shelter, nature, warm clothing – its all a blessing and calms me quickly.

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  64. Lana Archer

    Wow did I need this today…..I need to look and then I saw treasure in my horrible day….There are always something to thank God for . This was an encouraging devotion..

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  65. Trish

    I’m inclined to throw frequent pity parties. Just when I’m convinced nobody has as many irons in the fire as me…THAT is the moment when the Good Lord gracefully but continually reminds me that I have 700 million things to be thankful for including my privilege to whine. Those crazy moments followed by God’s polite reminders help me step back from the “gum stuck in my hair” and thank God that I have hair!

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  66. tawns

    *sigh* Yes, I am learning to thank God through all things… to see that there is a treasure that lies within each one of us as well in each day. Having a grown child that is trying to find her way and seeing our grandbabies have to suffer in the struggle, God has been showing me how to see the small things that I can thank Him and praise Him for. By thanking Him, trusting Him, praising Him… I can see beyond the circumstances. I am noticing the tiny reminders that He is working in their lives and that the change is coming. I want to be a noticer in everything I say, everything I do so that I can move beyond my little finite mind and see with my spiritual eyes all that God has for me to see! Thank you for the opportunity to share with you!

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  67. Nico Smith

    On such a boring night wth not much to do , ther than watching the Olympics on NBC, I’m glad to have discovered this powerfuldevotion from Proverbs 31 Ministries that Lysa Ter…Keurst wrote on her website, http://www.LysaTerKeurst.com. Ultimately, I find his idea of true thaksgiving refreshing because it’swhat God’s been talking to meabout tonight. I mean, there are things I was worried about for he last few nights- my leopard gecko not eating being on the main concern. My husband, Ron Smith and I thank God that nothing is wrong with him, that the only thig going on was that he just wasn’t hungry for the last two days. The two of us prayed that nothig was seriously wrong, and ourrayers got answered earlier tonight when our leopard gecko ate like usual. I ♥ how God is so capable of answering prayers i mysterious ways. “The truly thankful person is a truly peaceful person. They have a habit no matter what to notice, pause,and choose.”~#BEANOTICER I ♥ this quote. I have an idea what it means to me for my life. I notice a lot of things that are going on around me. I usually stop what I’m doing because I’ve seen something. I usually stop what I may be doing, admiring the beauty that God has created all around us, even if I’m legally blind. I somehow have a sixth sense about what’s going on. “I’ll never forget the night I helped my son edit his college term paper. Something he wrote was so powerful it jumped off my computer screen, grabbed my heart, and challenged my perspective.

    If there was ever a secret for unleashing God’s powerful peace in a situation, it’s developing a heart of true thanksgiving. My son, Jackson, knows this.

    The truly thankful person is a truly peaceful person. They have made a habit no matter what to notice, pause and choose.

    Notice something for which to be thankful no matter what circumstance they’re in.

    Pause to acknowledge this something as a reminder of God’s presence.

    Choose to focus on God’s presence until His powerful peace is unleashed.

    Jackson’s paper was about the corruption and greed that caused the civil war in his native land – Liberia, Africa. He did a great job recounting the facts of the story. But the difference between Jackson and most other kids explaining a historical event is before we adopted him, he lived in the midst of the horrific conditions of this war.

    During one part of the paper, he described what it felt like to be naked digging through the trash looking for the treasure of thrown away food.

    The treasure of thrown away food.

    I can hardly type those words without crying. This is my son.

    And yet, despite the horrific conditions of his childhood there was an unexplainable thread of peace woven throughout his recollection of the story. A powerful peace centered in the awareness of God’s presence.

    I doubt any of us will find our treasure in thrown away food today. But will we be a noticer, a pauser, a chooser – a person of thanksgiving no matter what circumstance we’re facing?

    I find this truth about the power of thanksgiving over and over in Scripture. What was the prayer Daniel prayed right before being thrown into the lion’s den and witnessing God miraculously shut the lions’ mouths? Thanksgiving.

    After three days in the belly of a fish, what was the cry of Jonah’s heart right before he was finally delivered onto dry land? Thanksgiving.

    How are we instructed to pray in Philippians 4:6 when we feel anxious? With thanksgiving.

    And what is the outcome of each of these situations where thanksgiving is proclaimed? Peace. Powerful, unexplainable, uncontainable peace.

    “And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus,” (Philippians 4:7).

    Interestingly enough, one of Webster’s official definitions of thanksgiving is: “a public acknowledgment or celebration of divine goodness.”

    Will you join me in celebrating God’s divine goodness today? “Lysa TerKeurst

    I ♥ this story with is corresponding Bible scriptures. Unfortunately, we sometimes don’t take the time to stop and notice what’s going on in the spiritual swing of things. Our focus isn’t really on God, but the things that we are going through in our own lives. We need to stop to take time to notice all the wonderful things that God’s doing in and through us. Noticing the chage in us is what other people often do when they’re nearby. The Pentecostals Of Springfield congregation noticed a change in me when I renewed my passion and love for Jesus last year. I noticed a change in myself, too. I was more willing to step out of what I’d been accustomed to-thinking that I wasn’t supposed to get up, clap my hands, sing, and dance in church…that I was supposed to sit quietly and go through the motions each week. I’ve been learning that the Bible says we’re to give praise and thanksgiving through our worship by singing, shouting, clapping our hands, even dancing-no matter if there’s music. “If there was ever a secret for unleashing GOD’S POWERFUL PEACE in a situation, it’s developing HEART OF TRUE thanksgiving.”~#BEaNOTICER Ultimately, we need to work on having a spirit of thanksgiving for all the things that God has already done in our lives. I ♥ it how God has done a lot to allow us to feel like there’s a powerful presence working on us from the inside out. God knows our hearts, and He sees what needs to be improved, even before we can tell that something may be wrong in our life.See More

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  68. Lynn C.

    Thank you Lysa. These words were so needed today. As of late I have a lot of anxiety in my life, your words and the words of others here have truly helped me tonight to remember the blessings I have in my life. You have a beautiful way of helping others.

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  69. Jules

    I want to be a noticer.

    I am trying to develop more gratitude in all circumstances being laid off again is really hurting me and I’m trying to stay positive I know God has a plan and I’m working on having a attitude that is grateful, hopeful and encouraged.

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  70. Mary T

    Lysa, your sons’stories have always touched my heart! I have spoken about my medically fragile grandson before…well we are in a nursing deficit…lol! Andrew’s overnight nurse has been out for a month. Our day nurses took some vacation time so school vacation left “nurse” Mimi available. I have also been exhausted lately, so some days I arrive a bit grumpy. I have immediately caught myself, thanked Jesus for helping and strengthening me, and praised God for the opportunities to spend even more time with both my grandsons. They are both blessings! Those “saves” have made for a great time had by all! I am gonna keep on being a noticer and seeking and finding God’s Peace! BeaNoticer# God bless!

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  71. Kimberly Boyle

    July 1,2013 my son Brandon went missing near a local creek here in philly. He was with his brother and two friends. Long story short, we search for 4 days for him. I prayed and begged and had my entire church praying and searching. I KNEW God wouldn’t let anything happen to him. While searching, I remember god telling me all will be ok. On July 4, a jogger found my son. Dead. He was 2 weeks shy of his 14th bday. I was stunned. Broken. Wanting to die. But what god did was so amazing. Not only did my entire church show up but so did an entire community full of strangers , old friends and neighbors. It was amazing. God showed up for me like never before. When I think back to those horrific days , I can’t help but realize how much god loves me and gives me the peace to go on. Yes god allowed my son to die but he has been giving me the comfort to go on and maybe , just maybe help someone else someday. I miss my boy more than words can describe, but I know he’s in gods hands and god is with me.

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  72. anita

    I think I came across a post on Facebook today (one of yours, Lysa,) because God wanted me to see it. I have been in a real pit of self-pity and feeling rejected for about 2 weeks now. (I am actually doing the Made to Crave bible study online – halfheartedly, I must say) I am ashamed to write down why I am feeling so down but think if I do it then maybe I will have some kind of self-realization as to how ridiculous I am being……my daughter and I used to be so close (before she started working full-time) – we shopped together, went to lunch, shared our feelings, etc etc. Once she started back working fulltime, I feel that she has just left me behind in anything fun – oh, I’m good for babysitting or picking up the kids from various activities at a moment’s notice but the good stuff – the fun stuff – she now does with her many friends from work. I found out 2 weeks ago that she was going to the Women of Faith conference this weekend in Houston. She had never even mentioned it to me and I would have loved to go as well. When I asked her about it, she said she didn’t make the reservations – someone else did and she had just forgotten about it until I brought it up. I told her how much I love those conferences (which she knows because we’ve been together to a couple – well, sort of together – we were in the same bldg.) and wondered why she didn’t mention it to me because I could have possibly asked a couple of friends (all I have is a couple) to go with me. She just blew it off and said for me to go online and see if there were any seats left but she doubted it. So I did – there were some seats way up in the nosebleed section but when I spoke with my friends , neither could make it at such short notice. I have had these feelings of rejection simmering below the surface ever since I found out. She and her friends left yesterday for Houston. Now every time I look on Facebook, I see their pics – in the van on the way, at the hotel, out to eat, and at the conference. It’s like someone is sticking a knife in my heart everytime I see those pictures. I know I’m wrong! I know I am wallowing in self-pity but I just wanted to be able to write these feelings down because think I am slowly becoming “Unglued” as you sometimes say in the bible study and I am worried I will explode and do something I’ll be so sorry for leater. I feel so mean and ugly because I am just so mad and hurt!! It makes me feel like she just didn’t want me to intrude – to even be around her and her friends – and that is why she didn’t mention to me. Wow – I’ve never told anyone those feelings…….I am hoping I can feel better after this rant. I’ve dealt with insecurity all my life but never thought I would feel like this about my own child. I want to be a “noticer” about things in my life. To appreciate what God has blessed me with and does bless me with on a daily basis but for some reason I just can’t shake this unhappiness and feeling that my daughter has rejected me and put her friends in my place. I am now going to try to get my friends to go to Dallas in September to the Women of Faith Conference. I hope it works out for me to attend. Anyway, thank you Lysa TerKeurst for becoming a part of my life in the last month…….I hope by exposing these feelings (which I hate but can’t seem to control) I can feel better and go on about my day – looking for reasons to praise the Lord instead of staying in this bad place.

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  73. Beverly

    This week I’m grateful that God brings difficult people and situations into my life to reveal my areas of hidden sin and selfishness. Maybe even hidden to myself until He shines His wonderful spotlight on that area to show me areas that are yet unsurrendered to Him.
    We’ve had some family staying with us for the past few weeks and one member is particularly difficult and hard to love. But God spoke to me about my attitude. In my own strength I can not just conjure up a right attitude or love for this person. So I had to surrender to God, ask for forgiveness for being unloving and selfish and entitled. And ask Him to fill me with His love and help me to be loving and kind and patient with this person.
    I could have chosen to see this “trial” as simply an inconvenience and had a pity party (I throw the best pity parties:-)but I’m choosing to be grateful for this opportunity for growth and to draw closer to my God and to learn to walk in His ways!!

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  74. Deana Sceniak

    I found your site after searching for wisdom on adoption of older children. From what I can tell, it appears that your family has been blessed in that area. We also adopted from Liberia in 2005, two older children. I am grateful for the difficult journey but need to connect with someone who has been on a similar path and who may be equipped to counsel a difficult situation.

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  75. Jennifer Dougan

    Oh Lysa,

    I lived in Liberia for years and we were there when the war started, lost some friends, heard gun shots, stories of atrocities, and finally were forced to evacuate to nearby Cote d’Ivoire at embassy orders. I’m so sorry for what Jackson went through. Your son’s name is precious to me, since it is the name of a missionary couple who died in the beginning of that conflict. Tom and June Jackson were a grandparent-age couple who loved Liberia, and who died in northern Liberia the spring the war started. Wow, it’s a powerful story as Tom forgave the rebel and soldiers who shot and killed them. Phew, I would be happy to tell you more someday, in their honor, and in Liberia’s beauty. “Jackson”, the name makes me smile, remember them, and honor my God for his wild love that flowed out of them.

    Warmly,
    Jennifer Dougan
    http://www.jenniferdougan.com

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  76. Jessica

    Dear Lysa, thank you so much for this.
    I had a tough week. I feel really under appreciated at work. I asked for a raise and it was denied. I’ve never been so disappointed, work speaking.
    But I’m grateful I have a good friend to talk about it. I just used to be a very lonely person who wouldn’t have anyone but her family.
    People might take from granted having a good friend to share their heartaches. So I notice I have a good friend beside me who supports me. Paused and reminded myself having a good christian friend is a huge blessing. I choose to focus on God’s judgement and will.

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  77. Nicole

    Thanx for the reminder to be thankful. I have started a journey I thought God wanted for our family…..in the middle of it I am very unsure that it is God’s direction…..Is it because it is terribly hard that my faith is wavering? Or was I just not listening to God and forging ahead( I have a habit of this)? I took a moment to be thankful even tho confused that God is in control. I am also thankful for the things he is teaching me thru this…..not things I necessarily wanted to learn but thankful none the less.

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  78. Elaine Segstro

    God is good. I am so grateful that He is always with me and has a plan for my life, and I am able to see the fruits of that right now. I thank Him for my sons and continue to trust that He has a plan for their lives. I pray that He will continue to use them and direct them.

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  79. Jessica

    In trying to be more of a noticer I am able to enjoy the past few snow days. We have had many this year which as a teacher makes it hard to had continuity in my lessons when we haven’t had a full week of school since early December. In the past two days I have noticed that I have had less stress in my life the past few weeks which has given me more time enjoying my son and focusing on his needs and more time to spend with God and reading the Bible. These are things that I am dedicated to continuing when life gets busy again. I have realized that I don’t want to sacrifice the time I have with my son and with God.

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  80. Krissy

    I am noticing that through my struggles, I read amazing posts such as this one, reminding me to praise God for what He does give me, instead of focusing on unanswered prayers!!!!!

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  81. Sherri DeYoung

    I am so thankful for prayer. God is always there and listening. He has answered my prayer for restoration of the relationship with my son Ben. He has freed my son Seth from narcotics. I know He is working at restoring their relationship and many other prayers I have prayed.

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  82. Grace

    I am thankful for prayer, a loving church family, and the continued love and support of my family. I am learning to listen for God’s words and instructions in my life. My word for the year is courage to attempt new things, to do the things to move myself forward and handle the day to day challenges in my life. I look forward to being the good that I want to see in the world.

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  83. jodee

    I’m cultivating gratitude and thanksgiving each day. My husband and I have moved into my parents home to provide care so they can remain at home. I also work full time so I get pretty tired. I pray that I can be a blessing each day. Doing that helps me look for the good in my life.

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  84. Tamara V

    Every single day, in spite of my family’s current separation due to eviction because of our financial struggles exacerbated by my unbelieving husband’s multiple health issues, I choose to take the time to thank God for the fact that we all have a roof over our heads even if it is separate roofs right now and from what I hoped and prayed for regarding housing solutions. We also all have clothes to wear and food to eat — Jesus wasn’t kidding when He said don’t worry about these things. No matter what has happened we have never had to worry about either! Thankful for all the friends and family coming around to support us in these difficult months, giving of their time, energy and resources and prayer to make sure our worst case scenario is a heap better than some others’ worst case scenario. Starting everyday with time in God’s word, remembering to listen intently and try my utmost to follow His plan and lead to the letter this time so we can get to our Promised Land sooner than later. Remembering each day at bedtime how He has been faithful to provide what I needed for that day and will give a repeat performance tomorrow, even if the answers aren’t what I expect or think I want. Learning to trust that His way/answer is better than anything I dream up and surrendering my will and worry completely to Him. Then I find peace and blessing and more reasons to thank Him. #BEaNOTICER

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  85. Jen

    Treasures in the trash…let’s just say that last July The Lord turned my life upside down, but as I was sitting in a holding cell, He promised me that He would bring beauty from the ashes.
    Treasure 1: my husband turned back God and was saved
    Treasure 2: God has taught me so much about His presence and His peace each step of this journey, through court dates, meetings, etc
    Treasure 3: freedom from addiction
    Treasure 4: a wonderful discipleship with a dear sister in Christ
    Treasure 5: favor before the courts and His perfect timing in establishing court dates
    There are many many more, but I am so thankful for ALL God has done in my life since last July. He love and goodness have been so evident each day, in all the little things and quiet moments.
    Lysa – thank you for sharing your wisdom and for being real and honest about who you are.

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  86. Anna

    Strange I came upon this today. You prompt us towards thanksgiving. Interesting… Today one of my closest friends was raped by a man 3 times her age. Yes indeed. A person she didn’t know. A person who happened to know where the extra key was. Makes you wonder… this man must have went to a lot of effort to watch her and find out the location of that key. When she got to the police station she was prompted for a “rape kit”. A kit that invades your body. When you have just been raped… a kit like that may seem like a continuation of the previous nightmare. This girl… wanted her mom to be there with her but her mom was out of town that day. 4 hours away and the officers pressed and pressed for her to take the “rape kit” without her moms presence. So the girl gave in and feeling beaten and wanting to die. My friend. One of my closest friends. I can’t imagine what she’s going through but what’s even more frustrating is that I cannot be there with her because she lives on the other side of the country. And she’s texting me asking me what she’s done to deserve this. Telling me she wants to die. Asking me why does God hate you and if he doesn’t why he let all this happen to here. And I reply telling her, “God said that only through tribulations we will enter the kingdom of heaven” yet…. to be honest I can’t seem to look at that statement with optimism. But in the midst of all these events a part of me is truly appreciative. I realize she’s in pain but I do see a potentially wondrous testimony later on. I thank God for this occurrence because something tells me a lot of girls will really benefit from it. I also thank God for this occurence because knowing her… and knowing what God promises she will only grow closer to God and stronger in her faith. I know that this might also bring some of her parents closer. And who knows… maybe her overcoming of this might bring the actual individual who committed the assault to God. At least I hope so. I am so thankful that God has placed this girl in my life and that through her I am really being drawn closer towards God. Funny because I was the one that prayed with Keri as she gave her life to God. She’s only been saved for 2 months but a girl who is more of a newbie to faith is teaching me so much about it! She humbles me and I could not be more thankful for that!

    Reply
  87. Raquel

    Not focusing on the blessing in my life in the past has sent me into a deep depression. Becoming overwhelmed by lifes disappointments. Desperately wanting out of the darkness I cried out to God and He reminded me that I was not trusting Him, His words or His promises. He took me to James 1:2-4 NLT
    Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.
    When I feel myself falling back I to my old habits I remember this scripture.

    Reply
  88. Theresa Clark

    I am in a season of waiting for a job interview – to move up to a director position in my department. Waiting is so hard, especially since I have worked hard to achieve this position. But as I wait, I realize that there are many people praying for me and rooting for me to get this job (even my boss and many at work have told me so). I have a good job that I love if I don’t get this, and I admit I will be disappointed, but even in that I realize that God has a plan and a purpose and that gives me peace. I also have peace because I work at a great place, I have wonderful co-workers, I feel I am making a difference here for God’s kingdom and that gives me peace. I have a wonderful church family and family all over the country praying for me on this. That humbles me and brings tears to my eyes that God would bless me with that. And that calms my anxiousness as I wait. And I can wait in peace and acceptance knowing that God works out things for the good of those who love Him. Ah, I take a deep breath and release it knowing that and that My God (Our very great God!) has it all under His control. Always has. Always will.

    Reply
  89. Kristal

    How can I be happy if I don’t have gratitude? Gratitude, to me, means having acceptance. Trusting that everything is just as it should be in God’s world. Living with the unshakable understanding that outside of myself, I control nothing in this life. He’s got the whole world in His hands. My mom said once that I need tone thankful for the good as well as the bad in life. I did not agree until I went through some deep life changing challenges in life. The difference was, I trusted in the Lord fully through this time and came out on the other side stronger, thankful and most importantly, a faith in God that I never had before (and I grew up in the church). God revealed himself to me and I gained a faith like I had never experienced before. I experienced God! If I don’t have gratitude, I forget where I came from and how far God has brought me. If I don’t have gratitude, I fail to live in the victory that God has brought me to. I know it’s hard to believe, but mom was right.

    Reply
  90. Libbie

    I posted a comment earlier and someone replied with some great insight, but I am unable to go back to read it. I can get to comments 1-3, and 57 on, but nothing in between. Help?

    Reply
  91. Delta

    Nearly a year and a half ago I was diagnosed with stage IV colorectal cancer. Through this journey, I have learned to rely more and more on God. He has shown me over and over again that He has His hands on me and my family. I’ve learned to find the positive in every situation and am so thankful for the peace that God gives. It truly does surpass all understanding. My prayer has been that others would find encouragement and that God would be glorified in my trial. I have one daughter that is really struggling with why God would allow this to happen to me. I’ve been encouraging her to look at the positives, as well. To teach her that God uses situations like this to reach out to people, to draw others to Him. I tell her that no, it’s not always easy to focus on the positives, but if we stop, and look, we can always find something, notice something, to be thankful for, to praise God for and that we have to choose to be at peace, to trust God to see us through. You have to make a conscious decision to look for the good in every situation. When negative thoughts enter your mind, you have to stop, tell the enemy that he’s not going to win, and start naming off the blessing in your life and telling God how grateful you are for them. #BEaNoticer

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  92. Delane

    My husband of 32 years is fighting for his life! He needs a liver and a kidney transplant! This is an extremely hard time for myself and my family! Trying to stay positive has been the biggest challenge, but I have a strong faith and I know Our Lord Jesus Christ will come through for us! Through all of this I am grateful for my faith, support from family and friends and for what my husband has done for our family! He has served 30 years in the military, has been working a stressful job for the past 25 years and has provided for me and my daughters! He has always been the more positive one. And mostly I’m grateful for our 2 year old granddaughter , she has been such a blessing and keeps our spirits up! Praise God!

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  93. Bethany

    Everyday I try to pause and pick one thing in my day to praise and thank God for! I do want to be a noticer! Life is a blessing!

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  94. Adrienne

    My mom was diagnosed with lung cancer 3 days ago…the dreaded “c” word. It still takes my breath away to speak the word. Even in the midst of incredible sadness and pain, we’ve been able to see God. To feel Him. To know Him. He’s so present in this situation. Every day we try to not focus on the situation but to find and see His glory in the small things…beautiful weather/laughter through our tears/saying “I love you”/finding His promises in His word/being loved/prayed for/encouraged from friends both near and far! I praise you God for the blessings! Keep my eyes focused on YOU and not this situation. He’s got it under control … He’s got my mom in His hands.

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  95. Barefoot girl

    I am rebuilding my life and regaining my health and my hope after a lot of loss, regret, grief, shame and fear.
    I am thankful for a supportive family and a wonderfully skilled and compassionate therapist.

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  96. Michelle Long

    God has brought me through many troubles in my life. I choose not to focus on the bad things that have happened to me. I am not defined by the things that have happened to me or the things I have. I am defined by who God says I am. I am a child of the most high king. Although God does use the things he has brought me through to minister to others and that’s a great thing.
    I clean houses for a living. I spend my day in silence and I am blessed to have a continuous awareness of God’s presence in my daily life. It’s as if he is doing a continuous searching of my heart. Although I have a physical job it is a very sweet time in my life knowing I have full access to God. I am confident that I can take God at his word. I know full well that I can come boldly to Gods throne at anytime. Gods love for us is so amazing. As God brings things up in my heart I give him thanks and acknowledge him in it and then I give it back to him. Its so wonderful to have a relationship with the most high God.
    I am thankful for the job God has given me because not only do I get to spend time with him but I have the privilege to minister to the people that are at the houses I clean. I know from the things God has brought me through that thanksgiving is such a key to our relationship with him. Most of the time when I come to God in Prayer I thank him for everything I can think of. I like to remember what Gods word says and pray his word back to him by thanking him for all the things he says we are and have IN HIM! Before I know it whatever I am concerned about fades in pale comparison to his greatness. Thankfulness in Gods presence fills me with all peace comfort and joy. Peace and trust knowing that God has all things under control. God has given me a life verse. Psalm 62:8. Trust in God at all times O people pour out your hearts to him for God is our refuge. I am thankful that first I can trust God Second that I can pour my heart out to him and he certainly is my refuge. I am so thankful for my relationship with God that I would not have made it without him in my life.

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  97. Terri Satterwhite

    When I first started the study, I had no thought of giving EVERYTHING over to God. I compartmentalized what I prayed to God for and often felt I could control many things (insignificant in my eyes for God). Now I realize that God wants to know EVERYTHING about me. That includes what I put in my mouth as well as other day to day things. I want to praise Him more and be aware more of His world. I have started by being more observant of things to be thankful for and times I could share God’s love with others. I recently started letting people know I am grateful for them and things they do by sending hand written notes. It has been an eye opener to see God at work in so many different ways. I pray this turn of events continues and I continue my journey.

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  98. Cris A

    No struggles today, just wanted to say thank you God for saving me!! My childhood was an unhappy event and I purposed in my heart to not live in that unhappy shadow! I chose to be thankful for what God has done for me and share His happiness to those I come in contact with!!

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  99. sandra smith

    How true that one must praise, be thankful to God in the mist of difficulties. I am living in the mist of a difficult marriage but have slowly learned to be thankful even when things are broken, destroyed & I feel only wanted when he needs something from me.

    Reply
  100. Christi Pampino

    Today I had a company meeting. A company meeting on Sunday, of all days. I was not happy about having my time at church stolen from me. To be honest, even though I’d read your blog about #BEaNOTICER, that was the last thing on my mind. I was more obsessed with James 1:19. In fact, I pulled out my notebook to take notes and at the top of the page I wrote, “James 1:19, Be quick to listen, Be slow to speak, Be slow to anger”. You see, I drive a 3/4 ton pick up ton truck for a living. After spending 30 years in an office, I needed a change. I was burned out. I wanted a job where I could make a decent living and be a major support to our household as my husband prepares to retire. However, my job is not turning out to be all it was promised to be. I’m not earning what I was told I would earn and I’m feeling perturbation in my employment situation.

    I focused on those words as the company meeting unfolded. I took notes, I listened, I asked one or two questions. In the process, I listened and gained some knowledge. I focused on James 1:19 and gained some knowledge. Then I realized, by focusing on James 1:19 and following Gods instruction, I became a noticer.

    I love when I am able to see, so clearly, Gods working right before my very eyes! I am bound and determined that, going forward, I will #BEaNOTICER .

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  101. Lynne Lancaster

    I retired from teaching at the end of this past school year to be available to be the primary caregiver for my mom in our home who receives HOSPICE services due to her being physically incapacitated and having significant issues with dementia. My dad had passed away a little over a year ago and we had managed to keep him and my mom at home though both of them had very significant multiple health issues. Besides caring for my mom, I wondered how I could maintain contact with others and be used by God in other ways despite being often confined to spending so much of my time at home. I learned that God could use the struggles that I faced and that I could be a support to others through posts and messaging on Facebook when I noticed those who were facing similar trials with dealing with a loss or caring for aging parents. Not only could I be a support to others but I gained much encouragement as I faced my own situations in knowing there was someone else out there who was helping to pray me through. Having gone through multiple tragedies in our family, I have found that when I start praying Lord let me be a blessing to someone else down the line because of what You teach me in the midst of the storm, that things start to look so much brighter and I climb out of that valley experience as I start to notice the needs of others.

    Reply
    • Eunice Dettering

      GOD IS A GOOD GOD. I went trough the same thing with my mom.I would do it again if i had to.My. mom had cancer. That was a hard pill to swallow. To see ur loved one to go tru.But i lean on GOD’S hands and he took both of us through it. Thank You. GOD. 1st time sharing this.Thank you for sharing this. It was hard for me.

      Reply
  102. Barbara

    We are to give thanks in all things… I was taught this my entire Christian life. It’s so easy when it’s blessings that God bestows upon us… but what about the moments in life that are not so good. Yes we are to give thanks even then. My mom was sick on and off for 4 years… on and off life support. She suffered a lot in the last few days of her life. I remember when she passed away… everyone there was crying. I slipped into a restroom by myself and as hard as it was I gave thanks to God for taking my momma… and relieving her from all the pain she had endured. Immediately peace covered me… a warmth I cannot explain. So, yes… it has taught me… Give thanks in all things and God takes care of the rest!

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  103. Kim Carr

    Lysa,
    I can never put into words how your devotionals on emotional eating have impacted me. Since one of your very first devotionals in 2014, where you empathised that God should be fulfilling us- not food and the act of eating. I have asked God to help me with this issue. My food struggle was that I eat to fill myself up not filling myself with God and His truths. I am not a large person but I have been carrying around about 25 extra pounds and through your experiences with food you have helped me to lose 21 pounds. Thank you for sharing your personal human failings with this reader and Wow what an impact your words thorough and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ have moved me in a totally healthy way of looking at food!

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  104. Jess

    The past 2 years have been truly amazing. First I found myself in the path of a drunken driver. I would be crushed and my body broken but would experience God in such a mighty way. He reminded me of forgiveness and as I recovered,I would meet the man who had caused me such pain, and pour out the beauty of our painful encounter with the power of Christ and his love for us. My pain is temp. My relationship is eternal. I would later find I had a rare blood disorder and in the middle of panic would grasp his presence and praise his love for me. He saw fit to give me another challenge to glorify him through. My husband would donate a kidney only to find his remaining one had formed a rare disorder. Again, in my moment of defeat I was delivered. God has not forgotten me he has favored me so I might share my amazing journey with others and help them understand that defeat is a choice and deliverance is freely given by a gracious God!

    Reply
    • Natalie

      Love that last statement! May I post on facebook the last part of that statement beginning with the word “defeat”? I just saw that demonstrated today in my granddaughter’s life..

      Reply
  105. Micah

    Lysa,

    I know that you adopted some of your children from Africa and my husband and I are also wanting to adopt. We have been trying to reach out to people that have been through the process already and can recommend a reputable agency that we can work with. We are both hopeful and prayerful that by reaching out and sharing our story with others, we will be able to connect with people that will be able to help us on our adoption journey. Thank you so much for sharing stories about your family; they have given me hope and I am truly looking forward to being a mother someday 🙂

    Reply
  106. Becky Webb

    I have a great life – a fabulous Christian husband, 3 great, happy, healthy little kids, a warm house, a stable income from a job I enjoy. Yet… I have struggled with thankfulness and have complained too much. It’s a good life, but it’s not the one I imagined for myself. I used to be a world traveler (pre-marriage) and always hated the idea of stability, of the “American dream”, for myself. Now, I struggle with contentment. But God’s been talking to me a lot lately about letting go of that old view of myself and finding purpose in my work as a mother and contentment and thankfulness in the life God’s given me. I appreciate this post. It comes on the tail of other similar messages in the last week and is, I think, God working with me to reshape my view of myself and the purpose of my life.

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  107. Esther Farnham

    Lysa,
    I just had to write a quick note after reading your devotional today on “BEaNoticer”. I was leaving the pediatrician’s office with my 7 year-old son, Benjamin. I had prayed for him today in a Mom’s in Prayer group – for his health. Benjamin has struggled for the last many months with sinus infections, asthma, neck pain. I worry about him. He is so precious, but his health always seems vulnerable. We prayed for his health today. Yet, he arrived him from school, I could tell he was struggling. His cough was frequent, he was weak and running low grade fever. I could not help but think – “God, but I prayed for Benjamin’s health specifically today”. Nevertheless, God was present. The pediatrician’s office fit us in quickly. Two doctors’ consulted on Benjamin’s recent visits and developed a “game plan” for his recovery, and sent us on our way to Walgreens to pick up a new antibiotic. As we departed Walgreens, Benjamin and I noticed a homeless man sitting on a bench outside the Walgreens. His eyes were blank and sad. He didn’t ask us for anything, but watched us walk away. I got in my van with Benjamin, knowing I would not give the man money, but feeling pulled to help him. This longing to help the man made absolutely NO SENSE given our circumstances. I had Benjamin in the car coughing. I had antibiotics in my purse that he needed to take, and two other kids at home waiting for me to start dinner. However, I felt a strong pull to help the man. I asked Benjamin for his 7 year-old advice. So, we pulled into Bojangles, ordered the “Bojangles Supreme”, sweet tea and turned our car around. Long story short, we pulled back to the bench at Walgreens. Both, Benjamin and I got out of our van. We delivered the food to the man, and asked him his name. And do you know what he said, “My name is Benjamin”. My son and I stood shocked. My sweet Benjamin made a new friend tonight. Another Benjamin. They agreed to pray for each other tonight. We prayed together on the bench. The two Benjamin’s are both praying tonight for each other’s health and rest. And our new friends asked us to check on him again soon. Well God, I guess you call us to “Be Noticers,” and to find thanksgiving in all circumstances. It’s cool to see the Holy Spirit at work! Thank you for your devotionals Lysa! Esther Farnham

    Reply
    • Linda

      Love the wisdom of our young ones. Thanks for sharing the God connection you and the 2 Benjamin’s had.

      Reply
  108. Sharon Wise

    Lysa, I attended the Win Some Women on Mackinaw Island this past October. After going home I sent a message to let you know that I had previously heard you speak at the North American Christian Convention in Cincinnati 2012. However, I recently realized that the city was actually Orlando where the convention was held that year. That was the time I first heard you speak. In January this year, I began facilitating a Sunday School class for women and selected the Becoming More Than A Good Bible Study Girl curriculum. The women are loving it. I have noticed how the women are relating to the themes in this study. They open up during small group time and share from their hearts and their tears. Thank you being obedient to God’s call on your life.
    Blessings—–Sharon

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  109. Tiffany Strickland

    Hi Lysa! I am being a noticed as I pray for God to work in my husband’s life, specifically with the care he receives from the VA hospital. My husband is a disabled veteran who was injured in a training accident 15 years ago when his Humvee was run over by a Bradley tank . As a result, he is in horrible pain everyday, despite the medications he is taking, and the VA refuses to do anything else for him, even the alternative treatments we have tried which help him, and that out church has blessed us in helping to pay for. We are frustrated, worn out, weary to the core-but instead of focusing on how I feel, I focus on the truth that my God is with me, and goes before me and He is not moved by the world or afraid of my husband’s pain or the VA, or anything else I face because He is I AM. I am thanking him in prayer daily for what I KNOW He is going to do because He works ALL things together for good for those who love Him and are called according to HIS purpose. (Did I mention that my husband surrendered to preach the gospel). I am determined to notice where I see God working and answering prayer in this situation 🙂

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  110. Teri

    Dear Lysa-
    This post was timely for me. We have a son who struggles with addiction and we have walked this road for many years. The past year has been especially difficult in that just as it seemed he was on the road to recovery his longtime girlfriend overdosed and died. He relapsed and though we offered to put him in private rehab the judge sentenced him to a year in the county jail. Though this is not what I wanted, before that sentencing I was on my knees pleading with God to do whatever would save this boy’s life. So now as he serves a year in jail I thank God every day that he is warm, is being fed, that he is safe and he is clean from addiction. Just last night I spoke with his girlfriend’s mom who has continued to be a loving support for our son. She too said, “Even though the grief of losing our baby is still almost unbearable, we are so thankful that we know that she is safe in the arms of a savior who loves her and watches over us until we see her again”. I feel God’s hand constantly in my ability to accept what has happened and to see how He continues to bless us. Thank you.

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  111. Deb

    I love this post! This concept of being thankful and truly SEEING the gifts of people in our lives… and of God’s miracles despite overwhelming situations in our lives… this is what has held us together. Our son Connor lived with severe medical issues for 8 1/2 years before passing away. He lit up our world, our lives… our hearts. I look back over his life and see God’s hand throughout his life. I see grace and hope. I see peace as God has given us HIS peace… HIS hope…HIS joy. I see the gift of our beautiful adopted son Micah as God’s gift of love, hope and joy as we continue to walk this journey. When Micah was diagnosed with a neuromuscular disease at the age of 2 1/2, I see God’s hand all over this little boy’s life. Micah has incredible joy! He loves God’s promises and learning about God’s love. I have absolutely no doubt that God is already using our family, Connor’s story and Micah’s heart to touch so many around us… and to change our hearts and lives completely. We are truly and completely blessed.

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  112. Suzanne R.

    I am keeping my eyes open, b/c I know He is seeking my attention, if I will only pay attention

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  113. Linda

    Wow! Thanks for your words tonight.

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  114. Lindsay McGhee

    Our circumstances create opportunities for thankfulness…even in the midst of great trials. It reminds me to Ps. 119:71 (NLT) which says, “My suffering was good for me, for it taught me to pay attention to your decrees.” I never thought I would be thankful for my sufferings: however, as I learned to thank Him for them, His peace overwhelmed my soul only to change the way I view them. Though I still do not want to suffer, I am thankful for it as I wait with great anticipation to see what beautiful fruit it will yield. Thank you for your continued obedience which blesses us all.

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  115. Mary

    Lysa,
    The Lord speaks to my daughter and me through your honesty, love for God, and love for others. Thank you for sharing your faith and walk with us. My daughter has been struggling, terribly, with stress/expectations that she needs to be perfect to be of worth. She is working so hard to believe in the truth God says about her, and trying to learn to have victory over her stress. Daily battle. Imperfect progress. The other night, during a meltdown of frustration and anger, all of the sudden she started giving words of thanks. It just started pouring out. She thanked her parents, she thanked God. I could see her visibly relaxing, releasing the stress, and peace coming over her. In the future, when she is unable to get out of the panic, I am going to start thanking God outloud over her until she has that peace.
    And, btw, I broke down and bought a second set of your “Unglued” books finally. I had snuck back into her room to reclaim my books, but when I saw her prayers, thoughts and reminders, I just couldn’t take them. Her heart was poured out to God, and she has received so much encouragement through them. Thanks for walking with us through life. Counting on that victory!

    Reply
  116. Bekki

    I will be writing a book about it, and iI was wondering how you got into speaking with someone about it? I want to share this message with others. My family’s story of handling my 5th child’s death is nothing short of Gods grace and love. I want others to feel that no matter what happens, God is really there. Any help you can give?

    Reply
  117. Bekki

    I will be writing a book about it, and iI was wondering how you got into speaking with someone about it? I want to share this message with others. My family’s story of handling my 5th child’s death is nothing short of Gods grace and love. I want others to feel that no matter what happens, God is really there. Any help you can give?

    Reply
  118. Bekki

    I will be writing a book about it, and iI was wondering how you got into speaking with someone about it? I want to share this message with others. My family’s story of handling my 5th child’s death is nothing short of Gods grace and love. I want others to feel that no matter what happens, God is really there. Any help you can give?

    Reply
  119. Roxanne

    Oh, my goodness, I just yesterday signed up to get the email devotions, and the one Lysa had this morning, well, I thought, she was writing about me! I always pray boldly, but, lately, it seems every bold prayer has come out, shall we say, different than what I had prayed for? My tendency is to have an internal temper tantrum that I did not get my way. But, I will definitely take this devotional to heart. God certainly know what is for our best, so much more so than I do! Thanks for the words of scriptural wisdom, Lysa. :O)

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  120. Nicole

    Hi Lysa. I have been reading your book “What Happens When Women Say Yes to God”. Well, in fact, this is the second time I have read it and my small group is reading it and discussing it also.

    In the “I Can’t” chapter, I realized that I Can’t Trust. I can’t trust my husband to take care of me or our finances, any friends to hang with me through thick and thin, my children to not up and leave me some day, etc. What that really means is that I don’t trust God. It is debilitating and suffocating. And, it has found it’s way into hardening my heart.

    Loving your books and your real wisdom like I do, I was wondering if you could help me in finding a good study I could do on Trusting God. I mean, REAL trust in God … not necessarily in the “why does God let bad things happen” sense, but in the “trusting Him with my every day”. I know that if I do not deal with this issue with Him, it will likely destroy me and my marriage, and my relationships with my children, family members, and others.

    I appreciate your help.

    Nicole

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  121. Amy

    Hi Lysa,
    I have read several of your books but “What Happens When Women Say Yes to God” was most influential. In the last two years, I have had to say “Yes” to God in some situations where I wanted to say “NO!” My sweet son was diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder last year and now my second son is showing similar signs. There have been many points in our journey that I have had to stop and stare hard into a future I wouldn’t have chosen for myself or my children. Your book helped to me at those points to say, “Yes, God. I will walk this road. Your will be done. I trust you.” And it’s amazing how God has rushed into bind my heart and give me the courage to fight for my boys and to help them grow and overcome. I never thought I’d be where I am, but I’ve also needed the presence of God so much, and it’s a good place to be. And through this I can say “God is good. We are blessed.” It’s a blessing to be a watcher of miracles as my children overcome battles with autism. It’s even more amazing to watch my children be a blessing to others. Thank you for helping me again to refocus on God and #BeaNoticer of his glorious character and powerful works, even as we persevere on a difficult journey.
    Thank you!
    Amy

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  122. tana

    Thank you for this blog! Anytime I find myself feeling sad alone hopeless depressed whatever I let my tears of & then push away from myself to really humble myself before God who has blessed me more than I deserve & my circumstances while not what I wish are not as bad as many other people in the world are dealing with & they’re certainly not as painful as sending my son to die on the cross for the worlds sin… Then I thank God for all that I have & ask for his guidance in my situation& that my actions & re actions glorify His name & point people towards Him. He fills my soul & I feel amazing love.

    Reply
  123. Emily

    Hi Lysa! Thank you so much for your encouraging words, and the reminder that we must maintain an attitude of gratitude – no matter what. God doesn’t just expect or suggest it, He commands it. Just a short 18 months ago I found myself without any hope as an unemployed single mother with a drinking problem (one that slowly progressed over the years.) A stranger invited me to a church where for the first time, I heard the good news of the gospel and gave my whole heart and life to Jesus Christ. Three short months later God blessed me with a job I love and a new relationship with an amazing man and fellow church member (he is a bible teacher/interpreter for deaf people). We wee married last October in a breathtaking ceremony in the suburbs of Philadelphia, Pa. When I trusted myself to navigate through life, I ended up lost and disappointed at every turn, but when I put my trust in the Lord – he transformed me from the inside out. I have hope and a future now through no efforts of my own. Gratitude? I am overwhelmed with it every day and pray my testimony will encourage others. -Emily
    “The joy of the Lord is my strength”. Nehemiah 8:10

    Reply
  124. Kathy Fogarty

    Today’s struggle/challenge: Right at this moment, my husband is taking a stand at work and explaining to his boss he can’t work on Sundays. Although there are uncertainties, (if he will have a job) taking a stand for God will lead us to His certainty. The fear that I feel is not part of His certainty. On my knees I will stand. I notice God through thanksgiving; thanking Him for giving me a husband who stands for Christ and truth. Thank you for allowing the Lord to use you this past weekend. I was with my daughter-in-law at First Baptist in Russellville, AR. You some about not attaching our identity to our insecurities. Then you mentioned about how you just started out writing a blog and through different circumstances next thing you knew, you were writing a book. Through that time you felt insecure about writing a book. That helped me so much! You see, you met my daughter-in-law; the one who lost her daughter to Spinal Muscular Atrophy(SMA). She showed you pictures of her children, my grandchildren. 🙂 During Briley Faith’s 61 days here, I, Granna, wrote a blog, my first. Through God-orchestrated circumstances I am now writing a book about that journey and God’s faithfulness. But, because of my insecurity in what I feel I am capable to do, it has been hard to even walk to the computer. It takes all I have to begin each writing. So, thank you for letting God use you to brake that chain of insecurity for me. I continually pray that lives will be changed through my blog. Only God could get it in 61 countries and over 20,000 views. I covet your prayers for wisdom in knowing how, when and where God’s words should land. All I have is a willing heart and God has the rest. Briley’s Daily Dose blog address is http://www.brileysdailydose.blogspot.com.
    Thank you again for being at your appointed time for me on February 28-March 1. Many blessings and happy faces!

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  125. Sherri S

    I have been trying to focus on the good in my “bad” or stressful situation. Instead of being upset that my husband is working an 18 hour day, I have thanked God for giving me a husband who wants to work and support his family. Instead of being anxious that my daughter is sick, I’ve thanked God that I have a beautiful daughter who is otherwise healthy and only has a cold and allergies. In short, instead of focusing on what I don’t have in the moment, I’m focusing on what I DO have in the moment, even if it doesn’t meet my expectation.

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  126. Teresa T

    Thanksgiving is a key part of my continual prayer life. Throughout the day, I try to say short prayers. I look around and pray intercessions or thanksgiving. Right now, I am thankful that your family welcomed the boys into your lives. Adoption is a beautiful thing. I am thankful that He adopted us too.

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  127. Keetra McGee

    God bless you Lysa! I’m doing a women’s bible study at my church over Unglued and it has truly been a blessing!

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  128. Cookie Cawthon

    Slowly walking out the backdoor of depression, I see peace and thanksgiving holding hands on the porch. After two years where thanksgiving became a foreign tongue, my heart is shyly trying to speak the language again. Selling our unlisted house in two days. The wisdom of my counselor. Tender grace. A great new teacher for my daughter with a learning disability. Sunshine. The sweet dance of gun-shy joy. The opportunity to write. I am beyond grateful! Especially for the peace that welcomes my return.

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  129. Judy J. Larios

    I currently going through a separation. the first couple of months were the worse and the hardest thing I have ever done. I could not find a way out of the emotional/depressed hole I was in. My whole world had changed and I did not understand why or who this happened. Nothing was working, talking to friends & family helped temporarily and then it would hit me , reality hit me right where it hurts the most. I started praying more and I started attending mass regularly. I know I have a long ways to go but in this process I am learning to be thankful for my blessings, to notice what I do have around me, my 2 kids, health, a job, food & shelter. To accept that if this is what God wants for me even if I don’t like it I will take it. I want Him to reveal what he has planned for me and my children. Since doing this I have noticed I am more at peace. I am able to bring myself back down when regret, doubt and fear come over me.

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  130. Nicole

    I just want to thank you for your book Unglued. I am reading the book and watching the DVDs with my church. It could not have come at a more perfect time. My husband of 12 years left me and our three kids almost 2 months ago. God has been using your book to speak to my heart and finding Proverbs 31 on Facebook had added that much more to my life. Times are hard for me right now. I’m tired and worn from the battle against Satan but through it all I have found being thankful for what I do have is at the center of it all. I have 3 healthy children, a great job as a nurse, friends and family that are here for me, and most of all a God who is bigger than everything. Impossible is not in His vocabulary and I’m eternally grateful for His grace and mercy in my imperfect progress.

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  131. Rachael M

    Lysa, thank you for your blog. It’s just what I needed to find this morning. I’ve been struggling with the challenge of seeking God first. He’s my best friend, my Father, and my Lord, but this world distracts me. Earlier this week I got very sick and ended up in the hospital. I’m 31 and the symptoms and pain came on over just a few short hours. I thought it was really time to go Home. Come to find out, it was just time to go to the ER. I begged for Gods mercy on my pain. He brought it, eventually. I’m completely fine now, but I find myself wanting to know why I had to go through that. Seeking God first has been a common thread as I read this week, and I didnt know how to do this….until I read your blog post just now “Notice something for which to be thankful no matter what circumstance they’re in. Pause to acknowledge this something as a reminder of God’s presence. Choose to focus on God’s presence until His powerful peace is unleashed” thank you. I feel like I’m headed in the right direction. With love, rachael

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  132. Beckie

    After reading Ann Voskamp’s “One Thousand Gifts”, I took up the challenge of writing my own 1000 gifts. It lifted me from my pit of depression and suicidal thoughts, and helped renew my thinking. This year I got a friend to join me in the three day challenge of writing our gifts so by the end if this year we both will have written 1095 gifts down. With my friend joining me in the challenge it keeps me focused on daily seeing the Lord at work in my life in the hard and easy, fun and boring parts of life. Thanksgiving has turned my stinking thinking into healthy and constructive thinking and has calmed my spirit. When I feel negative thinking threatening to swallow me, I turn my thinking to the many ways I can see God at work all around me now.

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  133. Sharon

    Lysa,

    Thank you so much for listening to God’s leading and writing Unglued. Just reading the 1st four chapters has helped me navigate days more successfully. I can’t wait to finish the book and watch the video. It has taken me 30+ years to “notice” that my hurt, solitary life has resulted in a separation from God that can’t be done over. Oh, I was a Christian! I just wasn’t a very good one. I’m praising God that He is the Great Restorer. I may have lost years of growing more intimate with him, serving him as He leads, and letting my life be a real example (not just words but no action).

    I can truly say that now I’m looking forward to the next 30 years and not looking back at the regret of the last 30. I finally noticed some of God’s plan for me and can hardly wait for more.

    Blessings to you and your ministry.

    Reply
  134. Achama U

    Hi Lysa,

    this is the first time visiting your blog so I’m glad to be here. Your son’s words touched me also. at the beginning of the year God gave me two keys to peace/shalom: gratitude (thanksgiving) and commitment, here is something I wrote re gratitude.

    “It is often at the end of the year and the beginning of another year that people tend to feel awful about their situation and their life and can’t wait to have another go in the New Year, they are way too goal-oriented. The thinking here is that everything in the past was so bad that we need to get as far away from it as possible and do everything better to achieve our desired goal asap, but truly, I don’t think you can authentically and in grace move forward with YHWH God without looking back and looking back with gratitude.”

    The link to the whole post is here http://ontheroadtohealing.org.uk/blog/2014/01/13/gratitude-commitment-keys-for-success/

    Perspective is what makes us a notice as you put it, it seems that your son ‘s view of the world and his circumstances both past and present has enabled him the perspective of thanksgiving and gratitude – this is a precious gift that not all of us have at such a young age.

    Praising God for him and the people who have helped nurture this perspective.

    Shalom

    Reply
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