When God is silent, He is not still.  God does some of His best work in the dark.  He does some of His best work when you don’t think He’s doing a thing.  He’s behind the scenes, working it out.  He is faithful even though you feel you cannot see Him.  

He has a plan for you, and it is a good one.  Your commitment in the dark is the path to your victory in the light.  Commitment to keeping your faith is the path to your victory in the light.  Commitment to keeping your faith, seeking God, and not throwing in the towel when no human solution is in sight is the secret to exchanging emptiness for abundance.  

– Tony Evans


Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.”

– John 5:17 (NIV)


O God, do not remain silent. Do not turn a deaf ear to me. Do not keep quiet, O God.

– Psalm 83:1 (GW)


When you cannot hear God, you will find that He has trusted you in the most intimate way possible — with absolute silence, not a silence of despair, but one of pleasure, because He saw that you could withstand an even bigger revelation.

– Oswald Chambers


Photo by Susie Stewart



Strong Vulnerable

…the strength of vulnerability. I am speaking of that paradoxical place where you discover the strength God has placed in you by actually risking the pain you would normally run from — especially in close relationships. You step into the difficult place and find you are not blown away. Hearing a friend’s criticism, you resist being defensive. You take the humble road, and find that it is the means of walking straight and tall. You say the words you need to say. In these kinds of moments, you can almost feel your soul expand.
Have you ever had an ‘impossible person’ in your life, with whom most of your interactions inevitably led to rejection and hurt feelings? If so, then you know the courage it takes to risk your heart – to be vulnerable – and to love in the face of that. That courage, exercised wisely, is like lifting weights in a gym, except that the strength you gain is an inner one.
In many ways, vulnerability is the last thing we would expect to combine with strength. The word literally means ‘able to be wounded,’ and therefore, vulnerability flies in the face of our usual concept of strength, certainly the one served up to us daily. To be vulnerable is to voluntarily place yourself, for the sake of a larger purpose, in a situation that could bring pain. You see something at stake — your own spiritual growth or someone else’s — and you are willing to risk your heart in a vulnerable way.

– Paula Rinehart


My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak,
but God remains the strength of my heart;
He is mine forever.

– Psalm 73:26 (NLT)


Dear, dear Corinthians, I can’t tell you how much I long for you to enter this wide-open, spacious life. We didn’t fence you in. The smallness you feel comes from within you. Your lives aren’t small, but you’re living them in a small way. I’m speaking as plainly as I can and with great affection. Open up your lives. Live openly and expansively!

– 2 Corinthians 6:11-13 (MSG)


Photo by Susie Stewart

No Fear

God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.

– Psalm 46:1-3 (NIV)


I imagine myself

standing on a mountain


when the ground begins to shake

and rocks start to split


the noise is deafening

and it’s hard to stay standing


I watch as mountains around me

crumble and fall into the sea


I stay standing

and I do not fear


my senses are heightened

my heart beats fast


but I do not fear


All is chaos

except inside of me


That is trust


A refusal to fear

because of who You are, God


That is the fearlessness I desire


– Susie Stewart


Do not fear [anything], for I am with you; Do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, be assured I will help you; I will certainly take hold of you with My righteous right hand [a hand of justice, of power, of victory, of salvation].

– Isaiah 41:10 (AMP)


Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong.

– 1 Corinthians 16:13 (NLT)


Photo by Susie Stewart


Sense Him






that the Lord is good


Worship in layers

of texture

and beauty

and fragrance

and song

and gazing


Experience who He is

with senses attune to Him


– Susie Stewart


Taste and see that the Lord is good.
Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him!

– Psalm 34:8 (NLT)


Christianity is a religion of the Word—the written Word, yes, but also the Word made Flesh, who dwelt among us, who turned water into wine, who made the blind see and the mute speak, who washed the stinky feet of fishermen and broke bread with unsavory characters. Christianity is a religion of that Word, too. The psalmist knew that words were not the only way of knowing or even worshiping God. His songs suggest that dancing, animals, birds, trees, oil and wine all speak in their various ways of God’s infinite wisdom, beauty, and love. The trees praise God with their seasonal dressing and undressing, the mountain goats praise God as they bring forth their light-footed young, and the bread and wine and oil speak of God’s sustaining love that’s worth savoring.

– Rachel Stone


We proclaim to you the One who existed from the beginning, whom we have heard and seen. We saw Him with our own eyes and touched Him with our own hands. He is the Word of life. This one who is life itself was revealed to us, and we have seen Him. And now we testify and proclaim to you that He is the one who is eternal life. He was with the Father, and then He was revealed to us. We proclaim to you what we ourselves have actually seen and heard so that you may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son, Jesus Christ. We are writing these things so that you may fully share our joy.

– 1 John 1:1-4 (NLT)


Photo by Susie Stewart


Lying Lips

The dishonesty

the corruption

the immorality


the oppressiveness

of not following God


is overwhelming me

as I stare at the screen


The disrespect

the anger

the abuse


Our world is pregnant with these things


And it weighs heavy on me


The sin weighs heavy on me


And as I turn off the noise,

I pick up my Bible

and read,

“Help, LORD, for no one is faithful anymore;

those who are loyal have vanished from the human race.

Everyone lies to their neighbor;

they flatter with their lips but harbor deception in their hearts.”


And it feels familiar

and sad


The media

feels like a deep cesspool

and it threatens to pull me down

into it


But then I read,

“The words of the LORD are flawless,

like silver purified in a crucible,

like gold refined seven times.”


And I know that You, God, pull me out of that pit


Your purity

Your absolute faithfulness

Your never-lying, truthful, beautiful words

are nourishment to me


And I remember to glance

at the corruption

the lies

the failures


and to gaze

at You God


Your flawless, sinless, beautiful face

Your life-giving words

are my relief


– Susie Stewart


Help, Lord, for no one is faithful anymore;
those who are loyal have vanished from the human race.
Everyone lies to their neighbor;
they flatter with their lips
but harbor deception in their hearts.
May the Lord silence all flattering lips
and every boastful tongue—
those who say,
“By our tongues we will prevail;
our own lips will defend us—who is lord over us?”…
And the words of the Lord are flawless,
like silver purified in a crucible,
like gold refined seven times.

– Psalm 12:1-4,6 (NIV)


I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

– John 16:33 (NIV)


Online photo

Unwavering Trust

Is your trust

swayed with your emotion?


Is your trust

in a wave-like motion?


Up and down

up and down

up and down


Or is your trust

grounded and firm?


Based on truth unwavering,



Set your eyes, your mind, your heart

on the God who does not change


and let not your circumstances

lessen your trust


He will still those waves

if you only surrender


– Susie Stewart


Let the morning bring me word of Your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in You. Show me the way I should go, for to You I entrust my life.

– Psalm 143:8 (NIV)


If you don’t know what you’re doing, pray to the Father. He loves to help. You’ll get His help, and won’t be condescended to when you ask for it. Ask boldly, believingly, without a second thought. People who “worry their prayers” are like wind-whipped waves. Don’t think you’re going to get anything from the Master that way, adrift at sea, keeping all your options open.

– James 1:5-8 (MSG)


Late that day He said to them, “Let’s go across to the other side.” They took Him in the boat as He was. Other boats came along. A huge storm came up. Waves poured into the boat, threatening to sink it. And Jesus was in the stern, head on a pillow, sleeping! They roused Him, saying, “Teacher, is it nothing to you that we’re going down?”

Awake now, He told the wind to pipe down and said to the sea, “Quiet! Settle down!” The wind ran out of breath; the sea became smooth as glass. Jesus reprimanded the disciples: “Why are you such cowards? Don’t you have any faith at all?”

They were in absolute awe, staggered. “Who is this, anyway?” they asked. “Wind and sea at his beck and call!”

– Mark 4:35-41 (MSG)


Photo by Arik Stewart

Good & Trustworthy

The God Jesus reveals would never do anything to harm us.  He has no malice or evil intentions.  He is completely good.  And the fact that God is also all-knowing and all-powerful makes His goodness even better.  I can trust God even if things look bleak.  It does not matter that God is all-powerful or all-knowing if He is not all-good.  If He isn’t all-good, I will never be able to love and trust Him.

– James Bryan Smith


Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be shaken but endures forever.

– Psalm 125:1 (NIV)


He is the Rock; His deeds are perfect. Everything He does is just and fair. He is a faithful God who does no wrong; how just and upright He is!

– Deuteronomy 32:4 (NLT)  


But as we come to know the good and beautiful God that Jesus knows, our struggles take on a whole new meaning.  If God is truly good and is looking out for our good, then we can come to Him with complete honesty.  We can practice honesty when we pray – baring our soul and confronting those hurts that make us doubt God’s goodness by handing them over to Him for healing.

– James Bryan Smith


Photo by Susie Stewart


The Pursuit

…the goodness and mercy of God isn’t just following after me placidly. The goodness and mercy of God pursues after me passionately…

God is so bent on blessing, He chases.

God’s not out to get you — He’s out to give to you.

And God’s blessings don’t pursue temporarily — but relentlessly.

It’s right there in His Word: His goodness and mercy pursue me not just some days — but all the days of my life.

When I’m in a wilderness, His mercy and goodness run after me.

When I’m hurting, His grace hunts for me.

When I’m plagued by problems, His goodness pursues me.

No matter where I go, He hasis two blessing men right there in hot pursuit: goodness and mercy, and no shadow of death can overshadow the goodness and mercy that shadows the child of God.

Even the discipline of the Lord can be a grace of the Lord and all the interruptions of a day can be the intercessions of Christ.

I whisper it to myself when it’s noon on the first day of the week and everything is closing in on me and I am already behind:

Whatever is chasing you — no matter what it looks like — it’s grace.Whatever is chasing you — no matter what it looks like — it’s grace.

And grace isn’t what makes us feel good: grace is all that makes us more like Jesus.

I can breathe deeper. I could smile. I don’t have to feel anything pressing on my chest — I could live relieved. Like I can re-live.

Because the real truth is: God wants to bless more than we want to be to be blessed. So why run from whatever God is giving? It’s only got to be for my ultimate good and His ultimate glory.

We don’t live in pursuit of a better life — it’s the blessed life that’s in pursuit of us.

It’s there on the counter, that open journal where I count gifts, and it may feel like I’m looking for goodness and mercy, but it’s grace and mercy that finds me.

No one chases grace — but grace chases everyone.

– Ann Voskamp


Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

– Psalm 23:6 (ESV)


Surely goodness and mercy and unfailing love shall follow me all the days of my life, And I shall dwell forever [throughout all my days] in the house and in the presence of the Lord.

– Psalm 23:6 (AMP)


Certainly Your faithful protection and loving provision will pursue me where I go, always, everywhere. I will always be with the Eternal, in Your house forever.

– Psalm 23:6 (VOICE)


Photo by Susie Stewart




is one of the worst

ways to feel






And we are tempted

to believe God would do that

to us


because people do


But His timeless words

speak assurance

into our wounded souls


“I will never leave you”




“I will never forsake you”




And enveloped in that

constant care,

that unending Divine presence,

the question really becomes,


“Have I abandoned Him?”


– Susie Stewart


Those who know Your name trust in You,
for You, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.

– Psalm 9:10 (NIV)


…For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.

– Deuteronomy 31:6 (NLT)


Is it possible for a mother, however disappointed,
however hurt, to forget her nursing child?
Can she feel nothing for the baby she carried and birthed?
Even if she could, I, God, will never forget you.
Look here. I have made you a part of Me, written you on the palms of My hands…

– Isaiah 49:15,16 (VOICE)


Never will I leave you;
never will I forsake you.

– Hebrews 13:5 (NIV)


Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God…

– Deuteronomy 8:11 (NIV)


Photo by Susie Stewart


Parent Love


“My love and prayers are always covering you.”


A covering

as in

a blanket

a coat

a shelter






from the onslaught


Extending over

as a shield


A treasured message from my mom

A gift passed on to my children


Parental love and prayer


– Susie Stewart


Don’t you see that children are God’s best gift? The fruit of the womb His generous legacy? Like a warrior’s fistful of arrows are the children of a vigorous youth. Oh, how blessed are you parents, with your quivers full of children! Your enemies don’t stand a chance against you; you’ll sweep them right off your doorstep.

– Psalm 127:4 (MSG)


Make the things I’m commanding you today part of who you are. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you’re sitting together in your home and when you’re walking together down the road. Make them the last thing you talk about before you go to bed and the first thing you talk about the next morning. Do whatever it takes to remember them: tie a reminder on your hand and bind a reminder on your forehead where you’ll see it all the time, such as on the doorpost where you cross the threshold or on the city gate.

– Deuteronomy 6:6-9 (VOICE)


Be assured that from the first day we heard of you, we haven’t stopped praying for you, asking God to give you wise minds and spirits attuned to his will, and so acquire a thorough understanding of the ways in which God works. We pray that you’ll live well for the Master, making Him proud of you as you work hard in His orchard. As you learn more and more how God works, you will learn how to do your work. We pray that you’ll have the strength to stick it out over the long haul—not the grim strength of gritting your teeth but the glory-strength God gives. It is strength that endures the unendurable and spills over into joy, thanking the Father who makes us strong enough to take part in everything bright and beautiful that He has for us.

– Colossians 1:8-10 (MSG)


Photo by Olan Mills way back when