Author Archives: Brenda Wood

Why Start Your Faith Journey with the Book of John?

Why Start Your Faith Journey with the Book of John?

by Brenda Wood

The Book Of John

The Book Of John (Photo credit: design-gate)

When I first invited Jesus into my life, someone suggested that I start my new journey with Christ in the Book of John. I’ve since offered the same advice to other newbies. Why do we do that?

According to the introduction to John in the Amplified Bible, this book is very different from the other three Gospels. Its purpose is to report the signs or miracles of Christ so that we might believe that Jesus is the Christ. In fact, the word “believe (trust, adhere to, rely on)” occurs ninety-eight times in this writing.

As we learn to believe, we will learn to trust, and the more we do that,
the more we will pray and obey. (Tweetable)

Who among you fears the Lord and obeys the word of his servant? Let the one who walks in the dark, who has no light, trust in the name of the Lord and rely on their God (Isaiah 50:10, NIV).

So have your read the Book of John lately? It would be a great place to start if you need to rekindle your faith.

 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it (John 1:1-5, NIV).

Prayer:

Lord, we believe. Help our unbelief! (from Mark 9:24) In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker 

Do You Have Dusty Knees?

Do You Have Dusty Knees?

by Brenda Wood

prayer-kneel

Dust always surprises me at the worst possible time. I’ve been living with it but didn’t realize it. Honestly, I hadn’t dusted in a while because everything looked okay to me. That’s because I never moved the mantel clock or the corner shelf stuff. I decided that if that dust didn’t bother me than I wouldn’t bother it.

Then the maintenance guy arrived to check out the fireplace for the winter. Of course he had to kneel on the hearth. When he got up…his knees were dusty and a knee size spot gleamed dust free on the hearth. Embarrassing or what!

How long has it been since we did some spiritual dusting? (tweetable)

When did we last pour our heart out to God? Are we thinking that if God doesn’t bother us, we won’t bother him?

When desperation hits us, we’ll be happy enough to get on our knees. (tweetable)

I have been driven many times to my knees, by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go ~ Abraham Lincoln.

Wouldn’t it be polite to build a good relationship with Him long before we beg for help?

The shortest distance between a problem and a solution is the distance between our knees and the floor” (Pastor Charles F. Stanley).

Prayer:

Lord, forgive us for not taking time to get to know you. Thank you that you already know us so well, that you forgive us. So, God, while I am here…I’d like to tell you about………..

For Christ’s Sake. Amen

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

Why Don’t We Ask For Prayer?

Why Don’t We  Ask For Prayer?

by Brenda Wood

Make-a-Prayer-of-it

My friend Jean recently lost her husband and when we ask how she is doing, she exclaims…”I am fine! I am just fine.”

Well, I’ve lost my husband and I know that the truth is that she is not fine.

She is one of those strong, silent types who keeps everything to herself.  Her heart is aching but she puts on a brave face and lies to all her friends. What is she thinking?

On the other hand, Bessie, another friend, bores us to tears as she shares every minute of her life demanding that we pray for her. Do we share our every thought with the world?

Isn’t there  a middle ground? Are we the type who keeps the necessary quiet, but willingly asks for prayer from trustworthy friends?

Lately it seemed that I am constantly contacting faithful prayer partners to ask for their support. I began to feel guilty for asking so often. Who was I to demand so much time and attention?

Then someone drew my attention to biblical reminders to pray without ceasing. (See Acts 12:5Romans 1:9 and 1 Thessalonians 5:17.)

Of course there are some things that we might wish to keep to ourselves, but prayer needs are definitely not one of them.

“When two of you get together on anything at all on earth and make a prayer of it, my Father in heaven goes into action. And when two or three of you are together because of me, you can be sure that I’ll be there.” (Matthew 18:19-20, MSG)

Prayer:

So Lord, here we are today, all of us gathered together in prayer, trusting you are acting on our behalf. For Christ, who always acts with us in mind. Amen.

Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

WHEN WERE YOU LAST IN HIS PRESENCE?

When were You Last in His Presence?

by Brenda Wood

Write! Canada - we worship You O Lord.

When did you last shout and praise God?

One day, to our delicious surprise, we found ourselves looking after 2 year-old Quinn because he was too sick to go to day care. Could we do it everyday? Not likely! Not enough stamina. Even when not so well this little guy can run us ragged.

The best thing? When he came into the house and he saw it was indeed Amma and Afi’s house, he reacted! Temperature or not, he ran and laughed and laughed and ran and hugged for several minutes. He found it a lovely thing just to be in our house, in our presence.

I asked myself when, if ever, I’d been that excited to spend time with God?

When had I last shouted and praised Him?

How long had it been since I thanked Him for anything? Or when had I dwelt on the thought of how Jesus died on the cross just for me?

Surely it wasn’t a year ago, was it? Surely I’ve thought of these things since then.

But have I really? Have you?

How deep is our prayer life, really?

When is the last time we showed Quinn’s kind of joy, just because we were in the presence of Father God?

“To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy— to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen” (Jude 1:24-25, NIV).

Prayer:

Lord, forgive us for forgetting who you are and what you’ve done for us. Amen.

Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

CAN WE PRAY LIKE PAUL?

Can We Pray Like Paul?

by Brenda Wood

How Can Paul's Prayers help you to pray?

How Can Paul’s Prayers help you to pray?

I’ve picked out a few challenging phrases from Paul’s prayer in Ephesians 3:14-19(MSG).

I dare you to investigate your heart and see where you really stand.

This is my life work.

(Do we know what our life work is?)

God handling all the details.

(Do we let him do that?)

God saw to it that I was equipped.

(How has He equipped you?)

And so here I am, preaching and writing about things that are way over my head, the inexhaustible riches and generosity of Christ. (Do we proclaim Christ? Why not? See the support we get for doing that–next line!)

When we trust in him, we’re free to say whatever needs to be said, bold to go wherever we need to go.

Paul responds to these thoughts by praying. (14-19).

Paul’s Prayer

My response is to get down on my knees before the Father.

I ask him to strengthen you by his Spirit—not a brute strength but a glorious inner strength

—that Christ will live in you as you open the door and invite him in.

I ask him that with both feet planted firmly on love, you’ll be able to take in with all followers of Jesus the extravagant dimensions of Christ’s love.

Reach out and experience the breadth! Test its length! Plumb the depths! Rise to the heights! Live full lives, full in the fullness of God.

Prayer:

Lord, help us to recognize and understand that through You, we can do anything, far more than we could ever imagine or guess or request in our wildest dreams! You enable us not by pushing us around but by working within us. Thanks God. Amen (from verses 20-21)

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Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IF … ?

What Would Happen If … ?

by Brenda Wood

Moses parting the Red Sea

Because Moses fed over three million people every day, scholars estimate that he needed 1500 tons of food and 4000 tons of firewood every 24 hours. Keeping those folks watered and washed required about 50 million litres of water daily.

To get them across the Red Sea in one night, he had to form them into a line more than three miles long. That meant the ‘road’ they travelled on through the Sea had to be at least three miles wide.

Whew! How did he do it?

  “By faith the people passed through the Red Sea as on dry land… ” (Hebrews 11:29a– NIV).

Moses did what he could and believed God for the rest.

“the people who know their God shall prove themselves strong and shall stand firm and do exploits [for God] “(Daniel 11:32b-AMP) .

What needs exist in your home right now? Does the electric, gas or water bill threaten your future? Are groceries a little scant this week? Does your salary not stretch like it used to? Have the children stopped going to church or the parents suddenly need care? Have you lost a loved one?

What would happen if we applied ‘Moses’ faith to our own lives?

What if we asked God for provision and expected him to provide?

What if we recalled those times that God did just that?

What if we expected him to do it again…and he did…?

Just because….. that is what God does.

I know because he is doing it for me…

Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

SHOWING UP FOR SERVICE

Showing Up for Service

by Brenda Wood

Because I’m a recent widow, people always ask how I’m doing. Lately, I’ve started to say, “I am good because God is good”.

Someone cries, “I don’t know how you do it”.

I tell them I’m just showing up for service, because that’s all I’m doing.

It is hard to be alone, without my love of almost 50 years. I miss Ron every day.

But tell me, what are you going through? Isn’t God meeting you in the midst of it? Aren’t you able to bear the loss, the pain, the difficulty? Of course you are because that is what God does. He comes along side. I can stand in the midst of my grief because God is faithful. He answers my prayers and the prayers of those who pray for me

Oh wouldn’t we like to wallow in self-pity? We could give into our feelings.  Some days we feel like we’ve made no progress at all. It seems that we’re swimming in noodles. But we know what to do when that happens.

“Keep awake and watch and pray [constantly], that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Mark 14:38 AMP).

God always hears our heart cries and helps us stand for one more minute, one more hour, and one more day. All we have to do is show up for service.

The Bible doesn’t say much about noodles but it does tell us what direction to swim.

“Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, It is the Lord! Simon Peter, hearing him say that it was the Lord, put (girded) on his upper garment (his fisherman’s coat, his outer tunic)–for he was stripped [for work]–and sprang into the sea” (John 21:7 AMP).

Swimming in noodles? What does it matter as long as we swim toward Him?

Prayer: Lord, give us the strength to swim through everything, even noodles, as long as it leads us to you. For Christ’s sake. Amen.

Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

BIRDS OF A FEATHER

Birds of a Feather

by Brenda Wood

“With this praying bit, I’m going to have to look for knee guards with a life time warranty.”

I know Ramona was only joking, because her note began with “You betcha we’ll keep praying” and because the Bible says:

“Your words have supported those who stumbled;
you have strengthened faltering knees. ” (Job 4:4 NIV).

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28 NIV).

When I threatened a devotional using her comments, she laughingly replied:

“Go ahead. I’d be ever so honored to be the stuffing of prayer that gets you, the brilliantly coloured ‘bird’ noticed and talking up a storm about our Lord. I love bragging about my sisters and brothers in Christ!!!!!”

And I thought about the pillows I’m sewing right now. Pillows are tricky. You have to sew tufts of batting right into the corners so they don’t flatten into a soggy mess on your sofa.

Ramona, and countless others burdened on our behalf, rest in Christ, kneel on God-strengthened knees and stuff all the prayer they can into our corners so that we won’t deflate under our circumstances.

Why do Christians pray? Ramona says it’s because we’re birds of a feather stuck together with Godly glue that’ll never ever separate. The Bible says that too!

1 John 4:12-No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us (NIV)

Prayer-Lord, thanks for being the glue that helps us be the stuff of prayer. In Christ’s Name. Amen

Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

A PRAYER IN ANSWER TO PRAYER

A Prayer in Answer to Prayer

by Brenda Wood

I’ve been praying over a desperate situation and God sent this in answer to my prayer.

Perhaps it is also the answer to yours… Brenda

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be at Peace

Do not look forward in fear to the changes of life;
rather look to them with full hope as they arise.

God, whose very own you are,
will deliver you from out of them.

He has kept you hitherto,
and He will lead you safely through all things;

and when you cannot stand it,
God will bury you in his arms.

Do not fear what may happen tomorrow;
the same everlasting Father who cares for you today
will take care of you then and everyday.

He will either shield you from suffering,
or will give you unfailing strength to bear it.

Be at peace,
and put aside all anxious thoughts and imagination.

The Prayer of St. Francis de Sales , St. Francis de Sales 1567-1622

Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

THE PRAYINGEST PRAYER I EVER SAID

The Prayingest Prayer I Ever Said

by Brenda Wood

As a new Christian, I got lots of well-meaning advice about how to pray. Apparently I wasn’t approaching God correctly.

I got so I was afraid to pray unless I followed some ‘standardized’ method. If I didn’t adore God first, maybe He would be angry. If I prayed out of sequence maybe He couldn’t hear.

This resulted in my not praying very much at all.

Thankfully, I studied the Psalms. David let God know where he stood, right off…

Witness the first verses of Psalm 86:

Bend an ear, God; answer me. I’m one miserable wretch!
Keep me safe—haven’t I lived a good life?
Help your servant—I’m depending on you!
You’re my God; have mercy on me.
I count on you from morning to night.
Give your servant a happy life;
I put myself in your hands!
You’re well-known as good and forgiving,
bighearted to all who ask for help.
Pay attention, God, to my prayer;
bend down and listen to my cry for help.
Every time I’m in trouble I call on you,
confident that you’ll answer. (Psalm 86: 1 The Message)

And then I read this poem by Sam Walter Foss.

THE PRAYER OF CYRUS BROWN

“The proper way for a man to pray,” said Deacon Lemuel Keyes,
“And the only proper attitude is down upon his knees.”
“No, I should say the way to pray,” said Rev. Doctor Wise,
“Is standing straight with outstretched arms and rapt and upturned eyes.”
“Oh, no; no, no,” said Elder Slow, “Such posture is too proud:
A man should pray with eyes fast closed and head contritely bowed.”
“It seems to me his hands should be austerely clasped in front.
With both thumbs pointing toward the ground,” said Rev. Doctor Blunt.
“Las’ year I fell in Hodgkin’s well head first,” said Cyrus Brown,
“With both my heels a-stickin’ up, my head a-pinting down;
“An’ I made a prayer right then an’ there– best prayer I ever said,
The prayingest prayer I ever prayed, a-standing on my head.”

Prayer:

Lord today is all topsy-turvy. We cry out our distress and take great joy in knowing that You answer…Amen.

Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker