The Note We all Play (#jammed daily devo, day 208)

July #jammed: Grace serves.

Day 208: Play the common note.

“She named him Samuel,saying, “Because I asked the Lord for him.” 1 Samuel 1:20July 27

Regardless of the type of instrument a musician plays in an ensemble or orchestra, there is almost always a note in each song that everyone plays.

The woman speaking in today’s verse knew that note well. It was a note of prayer.

“I asked …”

No matter how different our prayers are, we are all asking God for something. Healing, guidance, help, blessing …but beyond the note we all play are the aches familiar to each soul.  “Praise You ….Thank You …Forgive me …Bless me …” the sentiments that fill in the ellipsis are different for us all.

For Hannah, prayer had very much become about bearing a child. Heaped on top of the burden of her own barrenness, the was made fun of by her husband’s other wife for her inability to bear children. Her prayers were desperate for the only One she knew could grant her peace to do just that. And as He promises to us all, He heard her. Hannah walked away from prayer in peace.

Today’s Scripture is the happy answer to Hannah’s prayer. A son, whom she named Samuel, “Because I asked the Lord for him.”

Christ laid down His life so that we could weave our hearts in and out of Scripture as we pray. We can come to the Father, through Him, no common notes required. Jesus not only gave us an example of what to say, but He showed us how to pray. In the desert, in the garden, amidst miracles, and on the cross. Tears of blood when He prayed to His Father …and of confidence in the desert has He quoted Scripture to affirm His grounds against Satan. To ask for forgiveness on behalf of those who beat Him unjustly as He hung on the cross. Jesus lived out prayer as a personal conversation between a Father and Son. With Praise, Thanks, Forgiveness, and Blessing.

This, then, is how you should pray:

#jammed click to tweet jun:jul:aug

Get the conversation started by commenting below, and let’s encourage one another as we face life in 2017 armed with grace! 


Happy Praying,


Get the #jammed Daily Devo sent straight to your inbox each morning, by subscribing to Sunny&80. 

The School Lunch (#jammed daily devo, day 127)

May #jammed: Growing Grace.

Day 127: Visit often.

“Take a moment to think about who you are with and what you are doing.” Proverbs 23:1 (VOICE)

Her face lit up and her legs broke out of line. Down the hallway she flew and into my arms. image-127On the days that my over-tasked tendencies give way to down time, I sometimes surprise my daughters by joining them for lunch at school. Squeezed into a small table full of little people, those are fleeting moments I will cherish forever. Especially, when they are embarrassed of me in their teenage years.

Today’s verse reminds us to be careful of the company we keep and be aware of our weaknesses and tendencies. The world doesn’t stop watching us when the lighting is bad. It’s important to step into situations where the love we receive from Him can reach others, but not so far as to fall back into easy temptations and old patterns.

My prayer is for my daughters to see me as I am as they grow up …an imperfect mess, who was rescued by Jesus. I want them to feel like they’ve always been sitting next to the same person squeezed into that elementary lunch table. Transparent and real. But, how do we know what to tell our kids and when?

To further understand today’s Scripture, let’s look at the whole verse section that it’s pulled out of:

When sitting down to eat with a ruler,
    take a moment to think about who you are with and what you are doing.
 If you are the type who eats too much too fast,
    do whatever is necessary to curb your enthusiasm for food.
 Also, do not eye the ruler’s delicacies,
    for the food may not be what it seems.” Proverbs 23:1-3 (VOICE)

 It’s situational. We will know our children well, and be able to weave the experience of our own pitfalls into their guidance through discipline …and possibly pealing back our own layers in conversation as time marches on. It will be important to prayerfully consider which parts of our hearts to reveal. He will use all of our struggles to help others if we are in tune to His voice. But, if we are oversharing in order to exalt our achievements or wield control, we will stumble and fall.

 Considering when to expose our kids to what they don’t know about their parents is a delicate process, to be revealed over time in God’s time. The best way to start is through prayerful conversation, and time in the Word each day. Take time …and give Him time.

jammed-click-to-tweetFather, Praise You for guiding us through each day so personally. Thank You for creating us each with a unique collection of experiences and characteristics. Forgive us for trying to impress others with our accomplishments and knowledge, and bless us with open minds and compassionate, honest heart. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 Get the conversation started by commenting below, and let’s encourage one another as we face life in 2017 armed with grace! 


Happy Lunch dates,


Get the #jammed Daily Devo sent straight to your inbox each morning, by subscribing to Sunny&80. 

The Fig Tree (#jammed daily devo, day 315)

November #jammed: Gracious.

Day 315: Thankful for prayer.

“If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” Matthew 21:22

Slumped down on the kitchen floor in a heap of tears, I cried up …315

“Why ….I don’t understand …this is so hard …this hurts so much….”

In the depths of my soul, I knew He could hear me and trusted His ways over mine, but life hurts more than my eyes can see past sometimes. Some moments are crushing …and that’s when our faith kicks in.

In today’s verse, Jesus curses a fig tree, and though it has leaves the fruit is no more. There is some theology about the swiftness of judgement that Jesus is illustrating, but today we are going to look at the way Jesus’ encourages His disciples …and us …to have faith and pray.

“Have faith in God,” Jesus answered. Mark 11:21

Many times we pray but don’t expect God to answer directly. He isn’t always going to, because His direct answers don’t look the same as our expectations. But Jesus tells us to pray as if our mountains will move …and He will move them. Believe that He can, and it will happen.

When we believe in Jesus He begins to grow our line of sight. We’re OK with what we can’t see, and become better at trusting Him. Our prayers become proclamations, when we marinate our minds in His Word. We know He will answer, and aren’t worried about how we think He should. Believing prayer allows room for God to work.

jammed-click-to-tweetFather, Praise You for Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, and thank You for the channel of prayer He opened up for us. Forgive us for our lack of faith …even when we pray. Bless us to trust You more each day. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 Get the conversation started by commenting below, and let’s encourage one another as we face life in 2017 armed with grace! 


Happy Praying,


Get the #jammed Daily Devo sent straight to your inbox each morning, by subscribing to Sunny&80. 


The Impossible Things (#recall 12 series, September)

Welcome to the #recall12 series, where we are memorizing a little bit of God’s great Word each month! This month’s verse is: 

“If you can?” Mark 9:23 (NIV)


“Sometimes, I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” -Alice in Wonderland

There’s a scene at the end of Alice in Wonderland, where Alice is trying to summon the strength within herself to slay the Jabowake. And in doing so, she recalls all of the impossible things that she has believed. It gives her the courage to do what she believes she can do. Although a fictional story, this classic tale inspires us to remember that “the only way to achieve the impossible is to believe it’s possible.”

The mind can be trained to believe, and our thoughts can be told what we’re capable of. When we come down with a severe case of the “I can’t’s,” it helps to remember Who can. In this month’s memory verse, Jesus asks …“If you can?” Of course we can’t …but He can. And with Him, we will. Let’s look at the entire verse:#recall12 September tweet 1

“‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.” Mark 9:23 (NIV)

If you can? 

“What are you arguing with them about?” he asked. Mark 9:16

Doubt can kick the legs of our faith right out from underneath us. Arguments often seed in doubt and threaten to exploit distrust of another’s beliefs.

doubt-to be uncertain about; consider questionable or unlikely; hesitate to believe. distrust.

Jesus’ disciples were arguing over something that wasn’t going according to plan. The solution they sought wasn’t happening as they thought it should …or had in the past.

“Teacher, I brought you my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech …I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not.” Mark 9:17-18

Why, this particular time, aren’t His disciples able to heal this boy?

Everything is possible…

Jesus begins to address what is possible for them, and what is possible only for God. Possible often looks a lot different in our eyes than it does to the One who actually has a finger on all things alive.

“You unbelieving generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy to me.” Mark 9:19

Notice what happens when they stop arguing, and start to obey Jesus.

 So they brought him. When the spirit saw Jesus, it immediately threw the boy into a convulsion. Mark 9:20

Even the spirit saw Jesus coming, and took one last attempt to take the boy out. Life often seems to bear down when we’re already under attack, and that’s exactly what the spirit was doing to this boy.

“A person who truly believes will set no limits on what God can do.” NIV Study Bible Notes

There will be times in all of our lives where Jesus is the only one who will be able to help us.

“…if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.” Mark 9:22


#recall12 September 2

…for the one who believes.

When beyond our limits, our belief in Christ saves us. Again and again, He will lift us out of what life has buried us in.

“The question was not whether Jesus had the power to heal the boy but whether the father had faith to believe it.” NIV Study Bible Notes

When we walk with Christ, the Holy Spirit will convict our hearts when we’ve let our doubt lead us into dangerous territory. Much like God moved the father’s heart …

Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

The hardest part of faith isn’t accepting Jesus as our Savior. It’s not overcoming our doubt. It’s not even believing that the impossible is possible. The difficulty is in understanding what God’s seemingly impossible capability looks like …feels like …sounds like… in our everyday lives.

When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the impure spirit. “You deaf and mute spirit,” he said, “I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.”

The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out. The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said, “He’s dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up.

We’re not always going to be equipped to climb our mountains. Sometimes, we have to sit back and let God move them.

After Jesus had gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?”

He replied, “This kind can come out only by prayer.”#recall12 September tweet 2

The hardest part of living in faith is sitting still in the pocket of prayer. Humanity is very goal-oriented. There are many times when are guts achieve God’s glorious goals for our lives. Tenacity and boldness are significantly important to walk out our faith. But there are some tasks that will surpass our physicalities. Answers to questions will eventually elude our logical abilities. Sometimes God answers …“this kind can come out only by prayer.”

Life isn’t always going to look like we think it should, thought it would, or want it to. But that doesn’t mean we should stop believing in the impossible. Our God is God of impossibilities, and Christ has authority over all the earth. The Spirit translates our prayers to God and God’s Word to us. His Word is faith’s handbook, and Christ-followed foot-steps eventually lead us to the Author.

Like Alice repeated the impossibilities that had become possible in her life to extend her courage to defeat the Jabowake …so must we repeat what God has made possible in our lives. When we look back and recount answered prayers, blessings, and miracles …we give our faith feet to stand firm and confidently in His Love.

Happy Believing,

September #recall 12 PDF

Click here, or on the image, for this month’s FREE verse cards!

Recall 12 September Screen Shot

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The Cat Fights (#jammed daily devo, day 220)

August #jammed: Reflecting on Grace.

Day 220: Don’t growl about it.

“Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all August 8your mind.’” Matthew 22:37 (NIV)


My dog tried to act like she didn’t hear me.

“Cherry ….” I warned.


“Quiet!” I yelled. “Get over here and lay down!”

She sauntered over and landed on my feet …with a sarcastic huff as she let out all of the breath she was saving to bark at the cat that torments her from across the street.

It’s all day long, until we move upstairs to go to sleep …where she growls at that cat from the change in scenery. Every once in a while she will jerk me out of a dead sleep to warn that cat not to cross the street. It’s rediculous. And on occasion, she sleeps on the other side of my shut door because of it.

Today’s verse talks about loving God with all that we know how to love Him with. It’s hard to focus Him 24/7. Like my dog is constantly distracted by that cat, we are thrown off by all kinds of calamity throughout our day. There never seems to be enough time. Life goes too fast, except when it’s easy for a minute.

When we are tempted to lose focus, we can simply look up and ask for help. He’s there, waiting to lend a hand in reminder of why we love Him so much. Attention spans are fickle, so we have to keep reeling them in over and over again …and giving them back to Him.

There are a lot of cats across the streets of our minds. Things that temp us to stew and people that we don’t feel like forgiving. There are situations out of our control and delays we don’t understand. Through it all, Christ’s hand reaches down to remind us that we are His.

#jammed click to tweet jun:jul:aug

Father, Praise You for this day and this time to reflect on Your Word. Thank You for Jesus’ grip on our hands. Forgive us for wanting to growl and grimace at life, and help us to stay focused on You and follow Jesus …today, and always. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Get the conversation started by commenting below, and let’s encourage one another as we face life in 2017 armed with grace! 


Happy Praying,


Get the #jammed Daily Devo sent straight to your inbox each morning, by subscribing to Sunny&80.