Sunday, October 14, 2018

Expecting Something

"Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour. And a man lame from birth was being carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple that is called the Beautiful Gate to ask alms of those entering the temple. Seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked to receive alms. And Peter directed his gaze at him, as did John, and said, 'Look at us.' And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something from them." Acts 3:1-5

Uh-oh. Did I leave off at a cliffhanger? Sorry. Read the rest of Acts chapter three if you want to know what Peter does next. ;-)

Today, I'm focusing on the lame man.

Can you picture this man?

Each day he wakes up, and he can't move. Sores and aches probably covered his body as a result of being in the same position every. single. day. He can't take care of that number one need in the morning, so he either has to suffer through the indignity of his caretakers cleaning him or he sits in his own filth. He spends days, hours, and seconds just waiting. Waiting for someone to help him, to move him, to clean him, to speak to him.

Then he's carried through the streets like a spectacle. He's jostled and bumped and dropped. Pitying looks are thrown his way. Scathing comments always find their mark. But the indifference of those around him still stings his heart; try as he might, he's never gotten used to it.

And then he begs. Because that's all he can do: beg. That was the only contribution he can make to his family (if he even had any), to society, to his future. So day in and day out, he sits in front of the Beautiful Gate of the temple, the place where his fellow people go to worship Abba God. The place where many of those same people ignore him.

And some days he wonders if God ignores him, too.

Can you see this man?

As I was reading this chapter, something hit me.

"And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something from them." Acts 3:5

This man had every reason to feel hopeless. He had every reason not to expect anything for anybody, least of all God.

But he did.

He expected to receive something - anything - from Peter and John.

And he received more than he could imagine from God.

Guys, I don't know what you're going through right now. But I can tell you that I know what it feels like to stop expecting and hoping for something good, or for God to help, bless, or even touch your hurting heart. And our hopelessness is probably justified in some ways. We're broken. We're beaten down. We're hurting. Those tsunamis of heartache keep crashing over us, threatening to down us.

But if that lame man could expect something, than so can I! If he could keep going and hoping day after day despite the thoughts of worthlessness the enemy whispered into his ear, than so can you! And if Abba God could give the lame man so much more than he expected, then He will do the same for us!

"And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ." Philippians 1:6

(This verse literally popped into my mind as I was writing this post. Also, I've got a song recommendation for you guys: "Reckless Love" by Cory Asbury.)

None of us are forgotten. We are dearly loved by our Abba God. So keep expecting. Keep hoping.

Hugs, love, and blessings.

~V. Joy Palmer


V. Joy Palmer is the author of Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations and a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. She is also an avid blogger and co-founder of Snack Time Devotions. In her spare time, Joy is an unprofessional chocolate connoisseur/binger, and she loves acting crazy and drinking coffee with the teens she mentors. When Joy isn’t urging the elves that live in her computer to write, she’s hanging out with her husband, their adorable baby girl, and their socially awkward pets.

Connect with Joy on her website, personal blog, devotional blogFacebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

P.S. Any questions? Check out our Disclosures and Policies Page!

Monday, June 4, 2018

Day or Night, There Is Light

In the beginning...

It's the Biblical version of "Once Upon a Time..." And just like in the fairy tales I grew up loving, what follows is the set up for an epic story, the ultimate story of love. Okay, rambling moment over.

In the beginning...

"And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years, and let them be lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth.” And it was so. And God made the two great lights—the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night—and the stars. And God set them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth, to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good." Genesis 1:14-18, ESV

Have you ever confided in someone and heard that seemingly generic expression? You know the one I'm talking about... It has a few different forms, some pretty, some blunt, but the underlying message is the same.

Darkness can't last. Joy (not me) is coming in the morning. The night is only for a short period of time, then BAM! LIGHT!

All true.

But not always comforting.

I was reading my Bible a few weeks ago, and those verses in Genesis stopped me in my tracks. Suddenly, the full picture was just so much clearer in my mind's eye.

I love finding gold nuggets in my Bible reading. This was no exception. I love seeing clear examples of God's love and awesomeness in the things that seem small and inconsequential, but those things are momentous to me.

Once God created light, there was always light -- day OR night. At night, there is the moon, which reflects the great, big, guiding, revitalizing light of the day, as well as the stars that light the world with a Heavenly glow. Even when the sky is cloudy and dark, those lights remain steadfast.

Darkness doesn't last, but the light (God, yo) has never left us. It's there guiding us and whispering to our hearts that whether we can see Him or not, He's here. God put that amazing truth right there in the first chapter of the first book of the Bible for us to hold onto when the dark seasons threaten to be our undoing.

He's not going anywhere. His light is shinning on us.

Always.

I hope that blesses you as much as it blessed me. <3

See you next time, and God bless you guys!!!

Hugs!

~V. Joy Palmer


V. Joy Palmer is the author of Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations and a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. She is also an avid blogger and co-founder of Snack Time Devotions. In her spare time, Joy is an unprofessional chocolate connoisseur/binger, and she loves acting crazy and drinking coffee with the teens she mentors. When Joy isn’t urging the elves that live in her computer to write, she’s hanging out with her husband, their adorable baby girl, and their socially awkward pets.

Connect with Joy on her website, personal blog, devotional blogFacebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

P.S. Any questions? Check out our Disclosures and Policies Page!

Friday, May 18, 2018

Updated Privacy Policy & Disclosures

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With all the Privacy Policy updates going around in preparation for the GDPR, we decided we had better send word out to our readers. 

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Monday, August 28, 2017

"Be Holy"


Hey, check out our new 'Devotional Coffee Time Mugs' and find the perfect coffee mug for your early morning devotions. https://www.gearbubble.com/gbstore/snacktimedevotionalmugs

Thursday, February 23, 2017

"The Perfect Picture"

I love this picture! Well, to be honest, its not so much the picture I love as it is the truth it holds dear to my heart! I see a picture like this one ... where ... a little tiny, seemingly insignificant plant is making its way through difficult life situations and I am reminded of that dear to my heart truth. You know, the one that we so often lose sight of. This little tiny plant is not only surviving but growing and flourishing despite the hardships it is forced to endure because of that one basic truth. It grows towards the light!   

Check out 2 Samuel 14:14 "... Yet God does not take away a life; but He devises the means, so that His banished ones are not expelled from Him." He has a plan! He has a way devised! Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No man comes to the father except through me." John 14:6 And in John 8:12 He says, "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life." Jesus is the Way! Jesus is the Light we need to look to. Life doesn't have to come to a halt when things get hard. It is just like with this little tiny plant, there is a way to see the light at the end of the tunnel in your situation.

With Him there is always a way through to the Light!  "Seek ye first the kingdom of God," "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, strength." "Set your mind on things above!" These are all great ways to remember to grow towards the Light. The truth that I was telling you about, that one that is so dear to my heart isn't just that its important to survive the situation but to continue to grow and flourish despite the situation.

A picture like this ... speaks to my heart. It speaks a message that is so much more than that of  just surviving. It is the perfect picture because it offers up a message of hope! It is all about hope and the possibilities that lay ahead despite the hardship that lay behind. Hope. Hope that we don't have to stay a struggling little seedling but that someday, if we grow towards the Light we too "...may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the Lord, that He might be glorified." Isaiah 61:3

God Bless!!!




Thursday, February 9, 2017

The Tenth Coin

Can you picture this?

A woman hurries around the house trying to get ready to leave. She's already late. Very, very late. Her oldest children are screaming over a toy. She estimates thirty seconds until her boys come to blows. Her toddler has just learned how to undress herself, and now she runs around the house laughing victoriously as she tears off each article of clothing - including her dirty diaper.

Finally, with only a dash of depleted desperation, she's ready to go.

But wait...

An internal alarm blares in her head. She realizes she's missing something. She can't put her finger on it... Oh, no! Grabbing her purse, she pushing miscellaneous items around, fingers the pockets, and finally dumps all the contents onto her kitchen counter.

Frantically she counts.

"One...Two...Three...Four...Five...Six...Where are the others?" She mumbles under her breath.

She spies Seven under an old receipt.

Grabbing Seven she sees that Eight and Nine have fallen onto the floor. She scoops them up.

Where is Ten? Where is Ten?

If Eight and Nine fell onto the floor, then she theorizes Ten might have as well. She grabs a broom. She would sweep the entire house, look in every jar, and under every toy and dirty sock until she found it.

And then she and her kids would celebrate with ice cream.

Does this sound vaguely familiar? Perhaps you've lived this scene. (I imagine most anyone with children have experienced a variation of this particular day.) However, it's also inspired by The Parable of the Lost Coin.

"Or what woman, having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and seek diligently until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, 'Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.' Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents." Luke 15:8-10



God is so amazing. So loving. So diligent. So merciful. So loyal. So forgiving.

He will search for you. Always.

That is an undeniable truth.

But I felt Him whispering to my heart, adding another layer.

He searches for us. But do I search for Him?

I know I don't usually notice a missing penny. It's just a penny. However, in a sea of people God notices me. Truthfully, He notices my missing penny, my missing shoe (I hope it's happy, wherever it is...), and my missing book (Yeah, I'm going to want that back...).

But do I always notice when I'm missing Him? Time? His Word? His Truths?

The Tenth Coin. It works both ways.

May there be more days where I search frantically until I find it. Him.

Hugs!

~V. Joy Palmer

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

What I'm Not Thankful for This Year



Happy Thanksgiving! Hope you will have/are having/had an awesome Thanksgiving!!!

Isn't it amazing how reflective we get this time of year? I feel especially reflective. My daughter's first birthday is this week, so I'm really thinking about the days leading up to her birth. The labor. The surgery. My gorgeous daughter's little face now and then.

And turkey. I didn't get any turkey last year. I want turkey and stuffing this year. Yeah, I'm thinking about that, too.

I'm thinking about how this week five years ago, my husband and I started dating.

I'm also thinking about all the changes of the past year. Good and bad. I'm thinking about my daughter's first steps and the first time she got really sick. I'm thinking about my debut novel releasing. I'm thinking about my husband's new job. I'm thinking about my family.

These events play in my mind's eye. There are a lot of things that I am thankful for. So many blessings, opportunities, and triumph.

And there are a lot of things I'm not thankful. A lot of hurt and heartache. A lot of long days and sleepless nights. A lot of disappointments.

"Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. And he said, 'Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.'" Job 1:20-21

I was thinking about Job and how he still blessed God in the good and the bad. I have definitely not done that.

"Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ." Ephesians 5:20

I have definitely not thanked God in the good and the bad, FOR the good and the bad.

My feelings towards many things this year wouldn't be described as thankful, but Job's words give me some perspective. Because all the things that I'm not thankful for this year could never outweigh the blessings I've been given. Starting with my God.

Give thanks.

Hugs!

V. Joy Palmer