Monday, July 9, 2012

Our New Home

Wisdom In Blue Jeans has moved to a new home. Please check out my new website at You can continue to read my blog there. Plus you can sign up for email notifications for new post, contact me about speaking at your event and hear a recent talk I gave.

Please come visit.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012


I recently saw a quote that made me stop and think for a moment. It was by Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “Don’t judge me because I sin differently than you.” Often in Christian circles it is not the fact that one sins that causes the problem but that the sin is not on the socially acceptable list.

In Proverbs we are given a list of sins that God hates. This list is not the only one in scripture nor is it exhaustive but it shows how God’s list of sins is all inclusive Proverbs 6:16-19 There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue,  hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.

In this list God includes lying and murder, pride and gossip. In today’s society lying, gossip, pride are all socially acceptable sins. We don’t think twice about the pastor who has filed bankruptcy or the elder who clearly has a problem with gluttony but woe to the woman who has been caught shoplifting. We roll our eyes at the church sponsored ”bible study” that is really just a weekly gossip and grip session. But we ostracize the man who has a sexual addiction.

We have pitched our tents in the land of acceptable sins. We feel good here. The land is a little higher than others to make it easier to look down our noses. We feel secure in this land. The boundaries  are clearly marked and we know that as long as we stay within those we will be accepted in Christian society. The problem with finding security here is we are living in a cesspool.

A sewage swamp of sin is not a clean or pleasant smelling place. But, we think, everyone else looks and smells just like me so it must be OK. Sure when we compare ourselves to those around us we may look and smell equal or a little better. But comparing ourselves to others is what got us in the land in the first place. Our standards should be set based on the behaviors that God finds  acceptable.

In God’s list there  are no acceptable sins. He does not see big sins or little sins he just sees the horrific acts that sent his Son to the cross. You see,  even if all you ever did was tell one lie your entire life it would be enough to send you into the eternal torment and darkness of hell. One socially acceptable lie equals a eternity separated from God. One time when we choose food over God or we murmur about our coworker. One time is all it takes.

But, God so loved the world that he gave his One and Only Son. One time is all it took for Jesus to pay the price for all of our sins. All the sins of the past and all the sins of the future. Nothing is too big for the blood of Jesus to cover. It has already been covered.
Pull up your tent, break down camp and leave the land of socially acceptable sins. Pitch your tent in the land of Grace. The air is clear and the ground secure. All are welcome. There are no boundaries to worry about. No list of rules to make you acceptable. You are accepted because your are covered in grace. You are loved by the one who gave his life to cover your sins.

Welcome Friend!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012


Night. In a house filled with the noises of 3 children and a dog, sometimes it is the only time of the day when it is quiet. In the darkness that surrounds my bed I can think. I think of the events of the day, the triumphs and the failures. I pray. Confessing my sins, praying for my family and friends. Finally, praise for the day. Sometimes I drift off to sleep during my prayer. I don’t think that God minds.

But it was  not so long ago that night was a source of fear and anxiety for me. I found, over this time, that while I could fall asleep out of sheer exhaustion something, either a child or a nameless sound, would wake me around 2 A.M. 2 A.M. became my fear. When woken up my mind began running in an endless cycle.

The cycle usually started with the worries of the day. Then those worries would take me on the journey to the land of what if. This is a hopeless wasteland of my mind. A place where my worst fears would happen with vivid color and send my mind running to find a solution. I would begin to plan for the worst. Once my planning was done I would look at the clock and calculate the hours until my children would awaken. If I was lucky, it would be 2.

All these sleepless night began taking a toll both mentally and physically. I began to dread those quiet nighttime hours. Night took on a sinister look.

I tried everything to fall back to sleep. Counting sheep, counting my blessings, counting sheep named blessing. I took a journal with me to bed and would write when I woke up. That usually just lead to more writing. I took books. I began to read my bible, some devotion books, anything that kept my mind from wandering. When I was given the list of scripture I mentioned last week I decided to take it with me too.

2 A.M. arrived and I picked up the list. On page 3 I found this verse Job 11:18-19 “18 You will be secure, because there is hope; you will look about you and take your rest in safety. 19 You will lie down, with no one to make you afraid.” Hope and a night free of fear!  I began talking to God about what I was afraid of. Instead of venturing into what if’s I began to remind myself what was. The facts of my day and my situation rather than the speculation of tomorrow.

Gradually, my nights became less fear filled. Truth began to be my comfort in the darkness. God’s truth and the truth of my life. Hope became my minds new landing place. Hope found in the promises of God. Hope found in the growth he was doing in me and those around me. Hope that things were going to get better. As hope began to grow my sleep increased. I slept past 2, 3, 4 finally the whole night through.  

Hope, truth and promises became my sleep aids. Night took on less fear and more peacefulness. Peace of the quiet sleeping children bring. Peace of the presence of my husband by my side. Peace that truth brought.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Stressful Assurances

In everyone’s life times of stress happen. Sometimes they are the little stresses of life like fitting everything that needs to be done into a 24 hour period. Sometimes the stress is more serious and life altering. Recently I was given an eight page listing of verses to help during times of stress. I wanted to share some of these with you. I pray that these verses encourage you whether you are in a stressful time right now or just dealing with everyday life.

Psalm 34:4 I sought the Lord, and he answered me, and delivered me from all my fears

Psalm 16:8 I have set the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.

Psalm 91:14-16 “Because he[a] loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.15He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. 16 With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation. ”

Psalm138:3 When I called, you answered me; you made me bold and stouthearted.

Isaiah 40:28-31Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. 29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.30 Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; 31 but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Isaiah 43;1-3 But now, this is what the Lord says—    he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.

Job 11:15-19 you will lift up your face;  you will stand firm and without fear.
16 You will surely forget your trouble,  recalling it only as waters gone by.
17 Life will be brighter than noonday,  and darkness will become like morning.
18 You will be secure, because there is hope; you will look about you and take your rest in safety. 19 You will lie down, with no one to make you afraid.

Lamentation 3:22-26 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. 23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. 24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”25 The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him;26 it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.
Romans 8:31-39 31 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? 33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died —more than that, who was raised to life —is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written:“For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered. 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Philippians 4:4-9 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
2 Thessalonians 3:3 But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.
1 Peter 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
Stressful times are never easy but remembering  the promises of God help fortify our spirit for what lies ahead. This is a very short list but I hope it reminds you of God’s love for you. If you don’t see  your favorite verse added it in the comments section. You never know whom it might touch.
Finally, Numbers 6:24-26 The Lord bless you and keep you; 25 the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; 26 the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace. AMEN

Monday, April 23, 2012


I have always been a planner. I remember planning my life when I was 5. All the plans I made were those I thought, in my 5 year old brain, would bring me happiness. I was going to be the First Lady (because that was as close to a queen you could get in America!). I was going to have 2 kids; a boy first so he could protect his younger sister. Those were my plans. Not a lot of detail but enough to send my imagination soaring on summer afternoons.

God makes plans for us too. In Jeremiah 29: 10-12 God lays out the plans he has for the children  of Israel. He says; “10 This is what the LORD says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my good promise to bring you back to this place. 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.”

These promises were given to people about to lose everything. Their country, the promised land, the temple, everything because of their rebellion and disobedience.  Yet God was giving them a promise. He was giving a promise for generations to come. For those who would be born during the exile. He was reminding  them of the promise that he would fulfill.

The Character of God never changes and his plans for us never change. But the interesting  thing about God’s plans is that he never says that they are to make us happy. God is much more concerned with our holiness than he is with our happiness. This truth is the reason God allows us to suffer and go through hard times.

God allows us to suffer financial ruin, relationship strain, illness, and the death of loved ones all so that we will run straight into his arms and allow his strength to carry us through. His plans are for character building, relationship building, trust  building and our utter reliance on Him.

God is more concerned with our character than he is our comfort. His plans for us always include those lessons that will shape us into who we need to be for eternity. God’s focus is eternity. He isn’t worried about what is temporal.

Over the last year I have watched God’s plans in my life.  What I had planned for my happiness, he stripped away and revealed His plans for my character and my holiness. These included stripping away relationships. Removing the mask which I had become so accustomed to but which was slowly suffocating me. Taking away the security I held so dear to teach me whom I should be relying on. And finally, reminding me that it is only through His grace and mercy I call him Father. In the last year I have learned what it is to be completely broken before God. And I have watched as he chipped away the plans I held onto for so long.

I have decided to rest in the fact the God knows the plans he has for me. They  are plans for hope and a future. They are plans for a new prayer on my lips. They are plans for holiness and character for eternity. These are not what I planned when I was 5 but they have always been His plans.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

I Have Seen The Lord!

Daybreak was still a few hours away. She woke, if you can call the restless hours she had laid upon her bed sleep, dressed and prepared her small satchel. The oils, spices and cleaned strips of burial clothes packed securely. A light tap on her door brought her companion. She picked up the bag and opened the door. The morning air brought a hint of the warmth of day.

They spoke few words as they headed to their task. The sadness that cloaked their hearts seeped out into their words. Their task was not one they looked forward to. As they traveled and spoke they remembered the stone. How would they move it? It was so large. Perhaps someone would be there to help.

The first rays of sunlight had just broken the horizon when the earthquake stopped them in their tracks. The second one in 3 days. Terror seized their hearts. But they had an important task. They wouldn’t be stopped by an earthquake. As they approached the garden the scent of the early spring flowers reached them. The garden was beautiful.

The tomb stood open. The large stone moved. She stopped, then lifting her skirts ran as fast as she could, tears streaming down her face. She reached the upper room and flung opened the door. “Peter!” “John!” “He’s gone! They have taken him! He’s Gone!”

Watching the men run from the room she paused to catch her breath but soon found herself running back to the tomb. She arrives as they are leaving. Their disbelief replaced by resignation. Too consumed in conversation they don't see her return.

Walking up to the tomb she bent to look in. A blinding light flooded the darkness. Blinking at the light her eyes begin to focus, not on the strips lying on the shelf, but on the two men seated. Their voices full of compassion they asked, ”Woman, why  are you crying?” Didn’t they know? Who were they? Where had they come from?

“They have taken my Lord!, And I don’t know where they have put him.” With these words out she began to sob. The weight of sad from the last few days crushing her. Covering her face with her hands she turns to leave.

“Woman, why are your crying?” The voice sounded so familiar. “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.” Sobs coming harder now. She is doubled over as the sobs rack her body. “Please,  just tell me where he is.”

“Mary.” A single word. Her name. Spoken by the one who had saved her. She had heard it when he had cast out the demons. Heard it when she served meals to the twelve. She thought she would never hear it again and yet she just had. He had spoken her name! Her hands flew off her eyes and she gazed at him.

“Teacher!” She rushed to him, Fell at his feet reached to touch him. “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.”

Her sorrow replaced by sheer joy and happiness. She had seen him. The excitement bubbled up out of her! For the second time that morning she lifted her skirts and ran to the upper room. Bursting into the room she exclaimed, “I have seen the Lord!” I have seen the Lord!”

Mary could not contain herself. She told everything that had happened to her.

I have seen the Lord and my life is not the same. I have seen the Lord.

I pray that this Easter you will take the opportunity to See the Lord and, like Mary, once you have seen him you will be unable to contain your excitement.