Path to Peru

I’m excited to be on my way to my 5th short-term missions trip. Praise God! Thanks to all of you who are praying for me! I’m looking forward to seeing what God does in Peru! I hope you enjoy this short video I just shot. Blessings to you!

To read about the other missions trips I’ve been on, click here.

“Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?’ And I said, ‘Here am I. Send me!’” (Isaiah 6:8)

Did this video encourage you? Please hit “like” and be sure to sign up below to have my weekly encouraging blog posts e-mailed straight to you for free. When you subscribe below, you’ll also receive the free “12 Journal Writing Prompts” PDF I created to help inspire you as you write/journal.

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For more encouragement and to learn how I can come alongside of you as your Life Coach or to invite me to speak at your event, visit my website www.aboundingfaith.com. You can also find me on YouTube and Pinterest.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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6 Fave Verses About Missions

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I’m just weeks away from my fifth short-term missions trip! Glory! I find that amazing especially considering the fact that while I was growing up, the thought of going on even one missions trip never even crossed my mind. Ever.

Sure, I liked to travel. Years ago, my goal was to travel to different Olympic stadiums around the world. God graciously allowed me to visit four. Not bad!

Once I got saved though, God transformed my passion for travel into a desire to reach the lost and to encourage and pray for hurting people not just around me but in other parts of the globe including in Brazil, Ecuador, Ethiopia, and Honduras!

This year, God has opened the door for me to go to Peru. I’ll write more about my trip in the weeks ahead.

That God would allow me to be His ambassador or witness anywhere is both an honor and humbling! It’s also pretty exciting! That’s why the sign in the store window above has been speaking to me lately.

Serving God can be an adventure for sure!

Now that my trip is so close, I would like to share 6 of my favorite verses that help to inspire me leading up to my short-term missions trips. May they help to encourage you to say, “Yes!” should Jesus call you to Go Forth!

  • “Then Jesus came to them and said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.’” (Matthew 28: 18-20)
  • “…’Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’ How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!’” (Romans 10:13-15)
  • “Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?’ And I said, ‘Here am I. Send me!’” (Isaiah 6:8)
  • “I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses.” (Joshua 1:3)
  • “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9)
  • “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

Interested in short-term missions trips? Then feel free to read “Why Go?” and “Short-term Missions Trips 101″.

May you also remember that you don’t have to wait until you board a plane to be Christ’s Ambassador. You can be “A Sermon in Shoes” right where you are today!

Did this encourage you? Please hit “like” and be sure to sign up below to have my weekly encouraging blog posts e-mailed straight to you for free. When you subscribe below, you’ll also receive the free “12 Journal Writing Prompts” PDF I created to help inspire you as you write/journal.

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For more encouragement and to learn how I can come alongside of you as your Life Coach or to invite me to speak at your event, visit my website www.aboundingfaith.com. You can also find me on YouTube and Pinterest.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Let Freedom in Christ Ring!


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“Jesus replied, ‘Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.’” (John 8:34-36)

This week as you’re celebrating Independence Day, why not take some moments to thank God for the freedom we have in Christ.

As you can see from the verse above, we are free from being slaves to sin. That’s cause for a major celebration by itself!

Here’s a few more freedoms to celebrate:

Freedom from Condemnation - “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.” (Romans 8:1-2)

Freedom from Your Old Ways - “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17)

Freedom to Let Go of Past Hurts – “Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: ‘It is mine to avenge; I will repay,’ says the Lord.” (Romans 12:17-19)

What an honor and privilege it is to be a child of God! Blessings to you as you walk in those freedoms and more today and every day!

Did this encourage you? Please hit “like” and be sure to sign up below to have my weekly encouraging blog posts e-mailed straight to you for free. When you subscribe below, you’ll also receive the free “12 Journal Writing Prompts” PDF I created to help inspire you as you write/journal.

For more encouragement and to learn how I can come alongside of you as your Life Coach or to invite me to speak at your event, visit my website www.aboundingfaith.com. You can also find me on YouTube and Pinterest.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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A Sermon in Shoes


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“You’re just like Jesus.”

I was both surprised and deeply touched as my friend said that to me over lunch earlier this year. We had been chatting and catching up. As she shared how much she appreciates that we can be friends even though we are seemingly from two different worlds, she whispered those words that are perhaps one of the BEST compliments I could ever receive!

“I’m so not, but thank you. I’m trying to be,” is all I could eek out.

I don’t share this moment to boast. I share this to encourage you and remind you that some people will read your life way before they ever read the Bible. Your friends, family, co-workers, and neighbors are watching your life to see if you practice what you preach and if you are the real deal.

That could overwhelm you or it could inspire you.

People are hurting and they’re looking for answers. As Christians, we have the awesome privilege of pointing them to Jesus.

If your friends seek you out in times of trouble for prayer or counsel, count it an honor and a joy! Ask God to give you the grace, wisdom, and courage to share a word in season.

Of course we’re not perfect, but we can all be the hands and feet of Jesus. It can be through a kind word, a smile or hug, a listening year, running errands, praying, forgiving (or even asking for forgiveness). The list goes on and on.

When the moment is right, don’t be shy about sharing your testimony and telling others about what your life was like before Christ and what it’s like now as a born-again, blood bought child of God!

Here’s just a friendly reminder that we’re called to be:

Salt - “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.” (Matthew 5:13)

Light - “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16)

Witnesses - ”But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

Ambassadors - “We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.” (2 Corinthians 5:20)

We’re not called to hammer people over the head with the Bible. We’re called to love them, live out our faith walk before them, share the Gospel with them, and let the Holy Spirit do the rest.

I hope you’ll take some time to reflect on this: What is your life saying to others about Christ?

If you don’t like the answer, please don’t fall into condemnation. Ask God to help you be that salt, light, witness and ambassador right where you are!

Blessings to you as you let your light shine before others!

“But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.” (1 Peter 3:15-16)

Did this encourage you? Please hit “like” and be sure to sign up below to have my weekly encouraging blog posts e-mailed straight to you for free. When you subscribe below, you’ll also receive the free “12 Journal Writing Prompts” PDF I created to help inspire you as you write/journal.

For more encouragement and to learn how I can come alongside of you as your Life Coach or to invite me to speak at your event, visit my new website www.aboundingfaith.com. You can also find me on YouTube and Pinterest.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Lessons Learned from My Dad

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Photo taken during my visit to Ecuador in 2003

In honor of Father’s Day, I’d like to share a few lessons I’ve learned over the years from my Dad. I hope they will bless and encourage you as well.

Be Courageous - My Dad is the youngest of seven and the first of his family to leave Ecuador to move to the United States. He was in his twenties at the time and only knew one person here in the states, but that didn’t stop him. He still said, “Yes” to the adventure.

Don’t Forget Your Roots - Over the years, my Dad has stayed very connected to his extended family in Ecuador. He visits them often and is proud of where he came from.

Fight for Worthy Causes - My Dad has dedicated much of his later years to championing the rights of Ecuadorians living abroad. He’s helped get legislation passed in his home country to protect the rights of those who have emigrated from Ecuador.

Keep Dreaming! - My Dad has traveled far and wide. He recently came back from Italy. It was his third time meeting a Pope! He’s still building and doing construction. He’s still active in different civic organizations.

Use all Your Talents - My Dad has been successful in the field of mechanics as well as in real estate and politics. He’s written, he plays instruments by ear, and he’s got a very green thumb. In high school he enjoyed roughing it out in the Andes mountains with his friends as one of the leaders of his school’s mountain climbing club.

Find Time to Laugh - There’s a time to be serious, but then there’s a time to relax and share a joke or humorous story. My Dad has a healthy funny bone and enjoys telling stories. His laughter is pretty infectious, too.

I’m grateful for all these lessons and more! Thanks Dad, Love You!

 “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” (Ephesians 6:2-3)

Did this encourage you? Please hit “like” and be sure to sign up below to have my weekly encouraging blog posts e-mailed straight to you for free. When you subscribe below, you’ll also receive the free “12 Journal Writing Prompts” PDF I created to help inspire you as you write/journal.

For more encouragement and to learn how I can come alongside of you as your Life Coach or to invite me to speak at your event, visit my new website www.aboundingfaith.com. You can also find me on YouTube and Pinterest.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Jesus is the Same Forever!

I shot this short video last week to remind you that your circumstances may change, but Jesus is the same forever! He’s still in the miracle working business! Amen!

P.S. I’m so glad I didn’t have to wear a scarf or jacket for this video! Hooray for new seasons!

Did this video encourage you? Please hit “like” and be sure to sign up below to have my weekly encouraging blog posts e-mailed straight to you for free. When you subscribe below, you’ll also receive the free “12 Journal Writing Prompts” PDF I created to help inspire you as you write/journal.

For more encouragement and to learn how I can come alongside of you as your Life Coach or to invite me to speak at your event, visit my new website www.aboundingfaith.com. You can also find me on YouTube and Pinterest.

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Write On!

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My first masterpieces!

Long before I was blogging, years before I worked at a women’s magazine or had any desire to major in journalism, and way before I was an editor at my college newspaper or the editor-in-chief of my high school newspaper, I was already enthralled with magazines.

I didn’t want to just read them. The picture above is of the collection of magazines that I created at home. The Super Fifth Graders magazine was quite an ambitious endeavor for little me. I did all the writing for the pretend celeb profiles, sports section, and movie reviews. I also did all the drawings and was the production person who “bound” the issues together with tape. Gosh, I was a magazine-making machine!

I think my one and only reader was my older sister (she’s still one of my greatest supporters). I don’t think I ever shared them with others. It was more for my enjoyment.

I’m so glad that I kept the copies of my mini-masterpieces. They’re a great snapshot of who I was back then. I also have tons of diaries and journals that chronicle my life.

There is just something that fascinates me about the written word. There’s something so special about recording and reflecting on life as it happens.

I guess that’s part of the reason why blogging seems like a natural fit for me. It’s a chance to share the ordinary ins and outs of life with all of you. It’s also a way for me to share what God has been speaking to me. I’m so touched that what I’m writing is resonating with you!

When God asked me to lay down journalism years ago, I thought my public writing days for all intents and purposes were over. Sure, I’d still journal but that would be something I kept personal. My writing went into hiding. I had nothing to really say. No reason to share my words with others.

But God had another plan.

I had a funny feeling God would one day ask me to write for His Glory. And that’s the season I’m in right now. I’m delighted that you are taking this journey with me. I’m looking forward to sharing more about what God is laying on my heart.

I know He’s speaking to you, too! Perhaps reading my posts have inspired you to tap into your inner writer. If so, what a blessing!  I encourage you to write down your prayer requests, hopes, dreams, and goals. Don’t forget to record all the answers to prayers, too!

To help you as you journal, I’ve created a free “12 Journal Writing Prompts” PDF file that you can download when you sign up to get my weekly blog posts e-mailed to you. Each question will help inspire you as you journal what God is doing in your life. It’s my way of saying, “Thank You!” for reading my blog! You can sign up here.

Perhaps one of these weeks I’ll chose a question from the list and we can all share our responses! I’d love to hear what God is saying to you!

I can’t help but think of David and how he must have spent hours writing love songs to the Lord and sharing his angst and pain and his joys and victories! Or Paul who spent hours pouring out his heart in letters to instruct and exhort the early church. What about the disciples who left us vivid accounts of Jesus’ life, ministry and miracles and Moses who meticulously wrote down the law and the prophets who recorded the messages from the Lord. They all played a part, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, in writing God’s love letter to us! Amazing!

Imagine who you could inspire by writing down your life stories and sharing them. Your friends? Your kids? Or even just yourself when you read through everything the Lord has done in your life.

What are you waiting for? Write on!

Blessings to you as you find creative ways to express your love for God and His love for you! He’s wild about you, you know!

“The LORD your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.” (Zephaniah 3:17)

Did this encourage you? Please hit “like” and leave a comment below! And then be sure to download the “12 Journal Writing Prompts” here.

For more encouragement and to learn how I can come alongside of you as your Life Coach or to invite me to speak at your event, visit my new website www.aboundingfaith.com. You can also find me on YouTube and Pinterest.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Dream Big!

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Looking up from Manhattan the other day.

Are you a dreamer? Me too!

I love coming up with ideas for new projects, experiencing and learning new things, and planning and preparing for what’s ahead.

It’s fun to daydream about what to do next and even better to actually accomplish those goals! I’ve been doing a lot of dreaming lately, and God has been removing obstacle after obstacle. I plan to share some of those updates in upcoming posts.

In the meantime, I’d like to help inspire you to keep dreaming. And not just tiny dreams. No, I mean Big Dreams! Ones that seem out of your reach. Yes, the type that stretch you beyond your comfort zone. I’m talking about those ideas that you need God to step in and help you out with.

God is so creative! He created the stars, moon, sky, the birds of the air, the flowers in the field. He created YOU and me in His image!

He has given us ideas and dreams, talents and gifts, skills and knowledge, and His Holy Spirit to help us accomplish His will for our lives. We’re to use our abilities to bring Glory and Honor to our Maker.

Let’s marvel at Jesus for a moment and consider this:

“The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” (Colossians 1:15-20)

What an Awesome God we serve! The world really does revolve around Jesus!

What is God asking you to do? What is on your God-inspired bucket list?

Sure there will be roadblocks that get in our way, detours that try to distract us, and uncertainties about the next steps, but if God is for us who can be against us! Nothing can stop you from achieving what God has for you!

As I see God putting some of the puzzle pieces together in my life, I’m reminded that He really does Order My Steps and makes a way where there seems to be no way so that I can accomplish His purpose for my life.

He is at work in your life, too!

As you walk with Jesus, you’ll be working out your faith and patience muscles. That’s part of the process. Be sure to let Jesus lead you all the way. Take a quick break when needed, but then keep Moving Forward. Don’t let the ups and downs and curves in life stop you in your tracks. Instead Stay the Course!

Each taste of victory will be so sweet to your soul!

Blessings to you as you remain steadfast on your journey and live the life that Jesus planned out for you before the beginning of time!

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. (John 10:10)

Did this encourage you? Please hit “like” and leave a comment below!

To get these encouraging posts e-mailed to you for free and to receive the “12 Journal Writing Prompts” PDF that I created as a gift to help inspire YOU to write/journal, click here.

For more encouragement and to learn how I can come alongside of you as your Life Coach or to invite me to speak at your event, visit my new website www.aboundingfaith.com.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Obey God Anyway


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Ever notice that sometimes obeying God doesn’t make sense?

I just finished taking a class on the Old Testament prophets and the Bible passage that I focused on for my final paper is found in Jeremiah 32. God instructs the prophet Jeremiah to buy a field from his cousin in a town that is already being occupied by the Babylonians.

For 40 years Jeremiah had warned the people in Judah that destruction was coming, but they refused to repent and continued worshipping idols. Poor Jeremiah was beaten, isolated, and imprisoned.

But now the prophecies are coming true. Judah is under attack and the people are about to be taken into captivity. In the middle of all this, while Jeremiah is still imprisioned, God tells him to buy the field and to have it witnessed.

In the natural, that looks like one of the worst investments ever, right?

Jeremiah must have found this request absurd to say the least. Here’s what he said, “See how the siege ramps are built up to take the city. Because of the sword, famine and plague, the city will be given into the hands of the Babylonians who are attacking it. What you said has happened, as you now see. And though the city will be given into the hands of the Babylonians, you, Sovereign Lord, say to me, ‘Buy the field with silver and have the transaction witnessed.’” (Jeremiah 32:24-25)

Jeremiah doesn’t understand why God is asking him to do this.

Isn’t that what happens in our lives too?

Sometimes God asks us to do things that seem a bit outrageous or uncomfortable. We know it’s from God, but we’re not sure why He’s asking us to do it. It doesn’t even have to be something extreme. He could ask you to reach out to a certain person, volunteer to serve in a particular area or to bless one of your enemies in some way.

What do you do in those moments?  Do you wrestle with God for days or weeks and try to convince yourself you must have misheard God or misunderstood Him?

Or do you obey?

Jeremiah chose to obey. Then he prayed and praised God for being the maker of heaven and earth and for all the miraculous signs and wonders He performed as He brought the Israelites out of Egypt. He declared that nothing is too impossible for God and all the way at the end of his prayer he basically questioned why God asked him to buy the property.

God’s response to Jeremiah is classic and it applies to us today as well, “… I am the LORD, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?” (Jeremiah 32:27)

Yes, God is Sovereign and He has a plan and His plans will come to pass no matter what.

God goes on to say that judgment was coming, but after 70 years He would restore His people to their land and that’s exactly what He did.

Jeremiah buying the field was a step of faith and a sign that God would keep His promise.

I don’t know what God is asking you to do, but I want to remind you that when God speaks, He means what He says.

Even if your situation looks hopeless, or God asks you to do something that you don’t understand (like buy a field in a city that is about to be destroyed) you and I need to trust God. He knows what He is doing and He knows what’s best for us!

Did this encourage you? Please click “Like” or leave a comment below.

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For more encouragement, and to learn how I can come alongside of you as your Life Coach, visit my website www.aboundingfaith.com.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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5 Ways A Mother’s Love Reflects God’s Love

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In honor of Mother’s Day, I’d like to say that God really blessed me with a wonderful Mom! I’m so grateful for all her support and encouragement throughout the years and so thankful that we’ve remained close! This week I’ve asked my Mom to share a few thoughts with you. Enjoy!

God’s love is so amazing that we can’t understand it. The Bible says, “We love because he first loved us.” (1 John 4:19)

A mother’s love for her children gives us a glimpse of how God loves us:

  • A Mom’s Love is Unconditional! – A mother gives love without expecting anything in return.
  • A Mom Loves Her Children all the Same - She has no preferences or favorites. She has more than enough love for all of her kids.
  • A Mom’s Love is Pure – She wants the best for her kids.
  • A Mom is there for her Children at all Times - Whenever they need her, Mom is there.
  • A Mom’s Love is Forever - Her love has a beginning, but no end.

I pray that you receive God’s abundant love and His strength not just today but always.

Did this encourage you? Please click “Like” or leave a comment below.

To get these posts e-mailed straight to your inbox weekly, and to get my free e-booklet MiraculousLovely Abroad: Lessons and Snapshots from the Mission Fields, click here.

For more encouragement, and to learn how I can come alongside of you as your Life Coach, visit my website www.aboundingfaith.com.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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