"As I stepped outside my home on this early spring morning I was greeted by a blanket of fog. There is nothing particularly unusual about that, as this area can have quite a bit of fog throughout the rainy season. But, this morning there was something different in the low lying clouds. I had the sensation that I was walking on a beach by the ocean. I could almost smell the fragrant sea air and feel the refreshing coolness in the mist that accompanies the foggy summer mornings on the beaches of Northern California. I was filled with a sense of excitement and anticipation as if something new were coming..."

I wrote those words as an entry in my journal several weeks ago and just read them again this morning. I often do that to remind myself of prayers answered and to bring to the forefront of my mind the blessings that God provides. So, as I read the last line, I smiled. God has done so much in my life and as I have traveled on the path He has set before me, I have marveled at His faithfulness. He has never failed to bless me when I have listened and followed His leading. I haven't always understood the "blessings" at the time, but in all things, God has worked out His plan for my life in beautiful ways.

"For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope" (Jeremiah 29:11).

And so, as I thought again about my earlier sense of expectancy, I remembered the joyful events that have occurred since that morning several weeks ago. A strong desire had come upon my heart to share my faith in the Lord through the pen, and so I began to write. I decided to start an online journal to share my thoughts and the lessons He had taught me throughout the years. In the form of short, weekly devotionals, my desire was to share how His word had transformed my life. I had no idea if anyone would ever find and read what I wrote, but I knew that His word would never come back void.

"It is the same with My word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it" (Isaiah 55:11).

And so, trusting Him, I began The Beauty in His Grip. I offered my writings to the Lord and prayed that He would use them however He desired, to produce fruit. I found that if I tried in my own strength to write on a certain subject, the words would not come. However, when I prayed for His guidance and wrote what was then impressed upon my heart, they simply flowed. But then, an interesting thing happened…I was blessed. All of a sudden, my joy increased. With each word typed, I felt a deeper bond with the Lord. My journal entries became not only a way to share what He had taught me, but also another form of communication with Him. With that understanding, came an excitement which stirred within my soul.

Over the past ten weeks I have been blessed in ways I never anticipated and I am praising God! It is such a joy to write for Him and to read and meditate on His word. God has encouraged me through the women who have left comments for me and through their writings I have grown as well. But, why would a God so supreme and magnificent care to show His love for me in blessings? The answer came through David’s words -- God blesses us to show His glory.

“God, have mercy on us and bless us and show us your kindness so the world will learn your ways, and all nations will learn that you can save…God blesses us so people all over the earth will fear Him”(Psalm 67 1-2,7).

And so, through the early morning fog, I finally understood. The excited anticipation that I felt was the realization of God’s glory. He was there…He IS there…in all we humbly do as an offering to Him. When our hearts are set on the Lord and following His leading rather than our own, He will bless us so the world will see and come to know Him.

Living for Him,  


  1. AnonymousMay 23, 2010

    This has been my experience with my blog too! Isn't He good? xo

  2. This is why I write, too. It's an amazing experience to feel that kind of communion with the Lord. It's overwhelming and exhilarating when the words flow - that moment when the thoughts take over, and the words fly out, and they're more beautiful than you could make them on your own. It's a remarkable gift from Him.

    I also loved your reminder that His Word never comes back void. Praying continued blessings on you and those you touch with your/His words. I'm excited to have found this blog today and can't wait to read more.


  3. Joan, I am so glad you listened and obeyed! It's amazing to me that you've only been blogging a short while. You have blessed me through your writings.

    I began Heart Choices in 2007 as a blog about making heart healthy choices. With my cardiovascular nursing background, that made sense to me.

    However, the Lord had something else in mind for Heart Choices.

    He has led me in another direction and I've been obedient. And what blessing it brings as I listen for His voice and write what He puts into my heart.

    I'm so glad we connected on this faith journey.

    Blessings and love,

  4. Thanks everyone for the encouraging comments! It is nice to know that others know what I am feeling and are praising His name!

    Debbie -- Isn't it amazing that God knew all along how your blog would develop? I mean, you have a perfect title! "Heart Choices" - the choices that we make in our hearts make all the difference to our "health".

  5. Hi Joan,

    A beautiful heart sharing...

    I too am a huge journal person; writing prayers, thoughts and more.

    The LORD has an incredible plan for you through this unique and beautiful tool of blogging for His glory.

    Many blessings to you as you continue to write for His glory.

  6. I'm so glad you started this blog- it is such a blessing to me!

  7. I think it's very cool how you review your journal to see how God has provided. He's so faithful, isn't He?

  8. I am so grateful that you have started this blog to share what you have learned. It is so true; if I try to 'force' to write something I just stare at the screen, nothing comes. But if I take a deep breath, pray and open His Word, something usually starts to happen. All praise to Him...

    Love & peace,
    <>< Iris


Join the conversation! (Be sure to add your first name so I know who I'm talking to!)