Worship with Abandon


If you feel like it



If you feel like it



If you feel like it



If you feel like it



If you feel like it



If you feel like it…



Worship God with abandon!


Don’t just reserve your strong emotion

for things of this world


Nothing here should thrill you

like God!


May ALL that is within me

praise the Lord!


– Susie Stewart


O my soul, come, praise the Eternal
with all that is in me—body, emotions, mind, and will—every part of who I am—
praise His holy name.

– Psalm 103:1 (VOICE)


Bless the Lord, O my soul;
And all that is within me, bless His holy name!

– Psalm 103:1 (NKJV)


Praise the Lord!
Let all that I am praise the Lord.
I will praise the Lord as long as I live.
I will sing praises to my God with my dying breath.

– Psalm 146:1,2 (NLT)


I was privileged to hear Joni Eareckson Tada speak Saturday night at the Desiring God Conference.  Most of you know Joni, a quadriplegic, was paralyzed 38 years ago in a diving accident.  She gave a great and convicting message but as the time of worship began, I saw something that was more impressive than anything I heard.  I saw Joni dance.

Joni handles her wheelchair as deftly as any Nascar driver on a racetrack.  No sooner had the music begun than Joni began to “dance”.  As much as a quadriplegic can dance, she danced.  Joni has just enough movement and strength in her hands and shoulders to grip the controls on her chair and maneuver herself without the aid of others.  Suddenly the chair began to move with the music.  She thrust forward, then backward, then forward, then backward.  Smoothly, and yet with obvious passion, she turned to the right, then the left, then the right again.

Suddenly, the forward and backward and side to side movements gave way to spinning.  Well, as much as a paralyzed person can spin.  Joni began to turn her chair in circles, first clockwise, then back again.  If she ceased her movements, if was only so that she could lift her contorted hands as high as her paralysis would allow.  It wasn’t very high, but who’s measuring!

I had to ask myself why I often stand like a vertical cadaver.  I have the glorious gift and privilege of being able to celebrate God and honor Him with my body.  I can kneel, lift my hands to heaven, fall prostrate, clap, and yes, move to the right and left and dance.

I went home thinking about Joni and thinking about her God.  What kind of God is this who can inspire such freedom and joy in one who, from a human point of view, would appear to have very reason to hate Him?  What kind of God is this who has the qualities and characteristics and attributes and beauty and glory that He can be found worthy of the praise and gratitude and “dancing” of a woman who’s spent the last 38 years in a wheelchair?  Wow!  Now that’s some God!

– Dr. Sam Storms


I was dancing before the Lord, who chose me above your father and all his family! He appointed me as the leader of Israel, the people of the Lord, so I celebrate before the Lord. Yes, and I am willing to look even more foolish than this, even to be humiliated in my own eyes!…

– 2 Samuel 6:21,22 (NLT)


Photo by Susie Stewart

Unnecessary Performance

Don’t you know?

Don’t you remember?


You are someone’s child


You are God’s child


And He created you

to be in relationship with Him


But you think you need

to perform for Him


To get it right

to impress


To stop

messing up


But His love is not conditional

on your performance


Nestle into that love

and stay there


Performance is for an entertainer

not a beloved child


I was inspired to write this piece after listening to a interview my cousin, Kathy Gray, did on her new book “Light in Our Darkness”.  In the interview Kathy said, “We were never created to perform.  We were created for relationship.”  Amen.  Thank you, Kathy


– Susie Stewart


Don’t be mistaken; in and of ourselves we know we have little to offer, but any competence or value we have comes from God. Now God has equipped us to be capable servants of the new covenant, not by authority of the written law which only brings death, but by the Spirit who brings life.

– 2 Corinthians 3:5,6 (VOICE)


But to all who believed Him and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God. They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.

– John 1:12,13 (NLT)


So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith…

– Galatians 3:26 (NIV)


See how very much our Father loves us, for He calls us His children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know Him. Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but He has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like Him, for we will see Him as He really is.

– 1 John 3:1,2 (NLT)


And since we are His children, we are His heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory.

– Romans 8:17 (NLT)


Photo by Susie Stewart



Courage or Cowering?

That’s the choice


In the face of evil

in the day of danger

in the heat of challenge


the ones who trust

an all-powerful God

should take courage!


After all,

we are victors in battle

with a



Red Sea-Parting




No cowering necessary


Stand strong

in Divine power and strength


– Susie Stewart


Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Don’t be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you.

– 1 Chronicles 28:20 (NLT)


Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you.

– 1 Corinthians 15:58 (NIV)


For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.

– 2 Timothy 1:7 (NIV)


Photo by Susie Stewart

Cover Up

You seek to cover

that which is wrong


To hide sin

and secrets

and lies


As if a thick layer of deception

will do the trick


And what is really needed

is a blanket of grace


A covering of God


Humility, repentance, a turning

from that which you want to cover


Rip the blanket off your sin

and accept the robe of righteousness from Him


He sees all

and all will be exposed


Choose your cover this day


– Susie Stewart


What sorrow awaits those who try to hide their plans from the Lord, who do their evil deeds in the dark! “The Lord can’t see us,” they say. “He doesn’t know what’s going on!”

– Isaiah 29:15 (NLT)


Carefully determine what pleases the Lord. Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, expose them. It is shameful even to talk about the things that ungodly people do in secret. But their evil intentions will be exposed when the light shines on them, for the light makes everything visible.

– Ephesians 5:10-14 (NLT) 


Hidden things will always come out into the open. Secret things will come to light and be exposed.

– Luke 8:17 (VOICE)


Out of His fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given.

– John 1:16 (NIV)


Photo by Susie Stewart


If you are waiting for the offender

to be worthy of your forgiveness,

that time will never come


just like it never came for you,

before your righteous God


Unworthy, we came to our Savior

and humbly accepted His beautiful gift

of forgiveness


And we turn around

and we forgive people




because we can’t receive forgiveness

and then not give it back out


This is not an option


– Susie Stewart



If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.

– Matthew 6:14,15 (NLT)


If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

– 1 John 1:9 (NIV)


But You, O Lord our God, still show us compassion and forgiveness even though we have openly rebelled against You.

– Daniel 9:9 (VOICE)


You see, God takes all our crimes—our seemingly inexhaustible sins—and removes them. As far as east is from the west, He removes them from us.

– Psalm 103:12 (VOICE)


Photo by Susie Stewart

More and Less

The more we grow in Christ

and learn to love Him

and to trust Him


the less our peace and joy

are dependent

on people

and circumstances


What a relief


– Susie Stewart


I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in Him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.

– Romans 15:13 (NLT)


Photo by Susie Stewart


Do you know you woke up to a gift today?


This day,

this very one,

is a gift


You are here,

and your Sustainer

has enabled you to be here


We tend to think we are self-sufficient, don’t we?

That all is because of what WE do?




God gifted you with today


– Susie Stewart


This is the day the Lord has made. Let’s rejoice and be glad today!

– Psalm 118:24 (GW)


This is the very day God acted— let’s celebrate and be festive! Salvation now, God. Salvation now! Oh yes, God—a free and full life!

– Psalm 118:24 (MSG)


Thank God for this gift too wonderful for words!

 -2 Corinthians 9:15 (NLT)


Photo by Susie Stewart


We act sometimes

like people are our possessions


to be controlled

and manipulated


We act as if they should do our bidding

and it comes from a selfish heart


But God is the only One

who can safely have people as His possessions



We are His

because He created us

and because we were bought with a price


with the precious blood of Christ


His goodness flows to us

because of being under His God-sized umbrella of grace


How blessed we are to be

so lovingly called out of darkness


to be His own


– Susie Stewart


But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for He called you out of the darkness into His wonderful light.

 – 1 Peter 2:9 (NLT)


Remember you are people who have been set apart for Him; He has chosen you to be His own possession out of all the peoples on the earth.

– Deuteronomy 14:2 (VOICE)



Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body.

– 1 Corinthians 6:19,20 (NLT)


Photo by Andy Stewart



The Son is rising

Do you sense it?


His return is near

and our enemy knows

his days are numbered


The earth and its inhabitants

are groaning

from the spiritual clash


The bold in Christ are getting bolder,

and the evil more heinous


And I say Come, Lord Jesus!


We know you are rising

to take us Home


– Susie Stewart


Glory and strength to Christ, who loves us,
who blood-washed our sins from our lives,
Who made us a Kingdom, Priests for his Father,
forever—and yes, He’s on His way!
Riding the clouds, He’ll be seen by every eye,
those who mocked and killed Him will see Him,
People from all nations and all times
will tear their clothes in lament.
Oh, Yes.

– Revelation 1:5-7 (MSG)


With a loud trumpet call, He will send out battalions of heavenly messengers; and they will gather His beloved faithful elect from the four corners of creation, from one end of heaven to the other.

Now think of the fig tree. As soon as its twigs get tender and greenish, as soon as it begins to sprout leaves, you know to expect summer. In the same way, when you see the wars and the suffering and the false liberators and the desolations, you will know the Son of Man is near—right at the door.

– Matthew 24:31-33 (VOCE)


“Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.”

– Revelation 22:12-13 (NLT)


He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon!” Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!

– Revelation 22:20 (NLT)


Photo by Susie Stewart




So often people stay busy

to keep from feeling alone


They don’t slow down

for fear that life will not feel meaningful


without activity


But I have found

that when I am still

that’s when I realize more than ever

that I’m not alone


God is always with me

and being still helps me focus

on His being there




His existence

to me


– Susie Stewart


Be still, and know that I am God

– Psalm 46:10 (NIV)


And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake:

12 And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.

– 1 Kings 19:11,12 (KJV)


I will ask the Father to send you another Helper, the Spirit of truth, who will remain constantly with you.

– John 14:16 (VOICE)


Photo by Susie Stewart