The God Greater than Our Hearts

The God Greater than Our Hearts

Wife, mom, daughter, teacher, blogger, crafter, organizer - but most and best of all, I am a Christian. I am passionate about my family and my God. I am married to my best friend and am blessed with a one year old son who keeps me busy all the time staying at home with him. And I am glad to be in the service of our incredible and awesome God.
Tracy Watts

When you’re in a dark place and it’s hard to find your way out, what do you do? You feel lost and alone, unnoticed and under the radar. You are shuffled and jostled about, people walking past you, even talking to you, but not really seeing you. Not really knowing you.

Are you there? Are you in that dark place?

Your best friend may not see your inner heart. Your preacher may not. Even your mom or your husband or your kids may not. You might be drowning and no one sends out the lifeboat.

But there is Someone who does.

He sees the struggles and the tears. He sees the heartache and the loneliness. You can’t fool him–he knows exactly how wonderful you are and how awful you can be too.


But those voices whisper in your heart.

Why would He care about me?

He can’t really love me that much. After all, he knows exactly what I have done!

Why bother? I know I can’t do it.

Friend, let me whisper to your heart as well.

Psalm 9:10 says,

And those who know your name put their trust in you,
for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.

Consider Romans 8:32, which says,

He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?

When you’re feeling low and in that dark place, read these verses from 1 John 3:

By this we shall know that we are of the truth and reassure our heart before him; for whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything.

It’s true. We don’t deserve God’s love and forgiveness. That’s the true meaning of grace: we get what we don’t deserve. He give us forgiveness and not punishment. We get a second chance and not death. We get salvation and not condemnation.

But God is amazing like that. He is greater than us, loves us more than we could possibly imagine, and gave up his son–before I even committed to serving Him.

That thought should humble me, motivate me, and comfort me, all at the same time. It is the lifeline you can cling to when you’re in that dark place. And it can be what helps pull you back into the light.










Splinters: Allowing God to Heal and Restore

Splinters: Allowing God to Heal and Restore

I am a recovering Army brat who loves to travel and start new adventures. My handsome husband and I met at Oklahoma Christian University and he whisked me away to Kansas. So, I bought some ruby red high heels and made Topeka my home. I have a rough and rowdy Princess 4-year-old girl, amazing twin boys (almost 3) and a newborn baby girl who all make every day an adventure. We are grateful to be part of an amazing church in Topeka who regularly challenges and encourages our whole family. I have been both a full-time working mom and a stay-at-home-mom and/or both at the same time at one point or another. I am constantly seeking God’s wisdom on “balancing it all” and following His plan for my life, not mine.
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Last week my nearly three year old son had a splinter in the bottom of his foot. I told him to wear shoes outside on our wooden playset, but he chose to disobey and took them off before climbing the ladder. Lo and behold, he got a huge splinter. And it hurt him a lot.

My husband was working late that evening so it was just me versus the splinter. BIG SIGH.

I tried a few different tactics with my little boy trying to gain access to the bottom of his foot with my needle-nose tweezers, but he screamed and wiggled before I even touched him. I found myself contemplating sitting on him to keep him still. Seriously.

Finally, I grabbed him up in my arms and held him tight. I told him I needed him to relax and calm down and focus on the movie I turned on so I could help his foot feel so much better. He looked at me with tear-filled eyes and cried, “But mommy, no! I love the splinter.”

Suddenly, it struck me how similarly we act when we have a “splinter”–something harmful we hold on to when God is trying to make us new. But we can’t seem to let it go.

Whether it’s a particular sin we are struggling with, something we aren’t trusting the Lord with in our lives, a pain we are holding on to, or lack of obedience in our lives–how many times have you held on to your “splinter” and said you loved it instead of letting Christ heal your heart?


Psalm 31:19 says:

How abundant are the good things
    that you have stored up for those who fear you,
that you bestow in the sight of all,
    on those who take refuge in you.

It also reminded me of C.S. Lewis’ The Great Divorce when he describes the man with the Red Lizard.  I found a partial transcript in Christianity Today if you want to read a longer segment, but pick up the whole book if you haven’t already. In this story, a man has a lizard on his shoulder which represents sin in his life. It’s a startling allegory about what separates us from God.

A mighty angel approached the man and asked, “Would you like me to make the lizard quiet?”

“Of course I would,” said the Ghost.

“Then I will kill him,” said the Angel, taking a step forward.

“Oh—ah—look out! You’re burning me. Keep away!” said the Ghost, retreating.

“Don’t you want him killed?”

“You didn’t say anything about killing him at first. I hardly meant to bother you with anything so drastic as that.”

“It’s the only way,” said the Angel…. “Shall I kill it?”

“Look! It’s gone to sleep of its own accord. I’m sure it’ll be all right now. Thanks ever so much.”

After much discussion and indecision, the man finally allows the Angel to kill the lizard. As the lizard dies, it transforms into a dazzling white stallion.

The man, now free from his torment, climbed upon the stallion that had been his sin and rode into the glowing sunrise toward the Savior.

That is available to all of us. We can be free from our torment. Free from the sin in our lives.


Galatians 5:1 assures us, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” {sin}

Walking around life with “splinters” in our feet is slavery. What pain, what agony, what self-inflicted misery we can wallow in if we don’t seek the forgiveness, restoration, and loving healing of Jesus Christ.

Why is our old nature so hard to let go of sometimes? We think it will hurt, and it might a little…but life will be so much better afterward.

Do you have a “splinter” in your life that you need to surrender to God? Have you experienced the forgiveness and healing of Christ? Did you know that even though it seems incredibly hard to be refined by God through repentance and obedience and trust in the Lord, that He loves you and wants to see you restored, healed, and following Him?

“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.  For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”

Romans 8:1-4


I’m Not Who I Was…Regret and Forgiveness

I’m Not Who I Was…Regret and Forgiveness

Hello. I grew up traveling the world as a military brat. I ultimately felt God's pull to Oklahoma Christian University where I met my husband. We now have 3 beautiful children and have settled in Mustang, Oklahoma.I am a homeschooling mom and with 3 kiddos it is a full time job! I am daily encouraged by God's great patience and grace in my life. In my free time I enjoy reading and crafting.

Do You Have Regrets?

Have you ever found you have regrets that seem to continually haunt you?  In my experience these regrets can be anything from something seemingly small all the way up to bigger things.  Along with that, I’ve found it’s harder for me to find the strength to ask for forgiveness for some of these regrets than others.  I’m not talking about asking the Lord for forgiveness; that’s something I’ve practiced enough times that I’ve got it down pretty well.  I’m talking about asking another person for forgiveness.

Brandon Heath’s song “I’m Not Who I Was” speaks to me every single time I hear it.  This song so perfectly illustrates a letter that I’ve written over and over in my mind but never on paper.  Why is it that I cannot seem to write this letter and send it to the people from whom I need to ask forgiveness?  The fears that creep in are Satan’s stronghold in this situation.

“What if they don’t forgive me?” 

“What if they don’t care or don’t even remember?”

“What if they never respond? Will I ever find closure?”

I’m Not Who I Was!

How I’ve longed to reach these people and say, “I’m not who I was!” Why is it so important to me to reach out to these people? Why should their opinion of who I was, or who I am now, matter?  Matthew 5:23-24 says:

“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has  something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar.  First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.” (NIV)

If I think that my fellow brother or sister in Christ harbors something against me because I have wronged them in some way, how can I come to the altar with a clean heart?  I must go to them and ask for forgiveness.My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen

Create in Me…

Psalm 51:10 says, “Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” (NIV)

I remember singing that song as a child, “Create in me a clean heart, oh God, and renew a right spirit within me.  And cast me not away from Your presence, oh Lord, and take not Your Holy Spirit from me.  Restore unto me, the joy of Thy salvation, and renew a right spirit within me.”

Dealing with Regret by Asking Forgiveness

Knowing these words from the Lord, how can I continue on without asking forgiveness?  It would not be right for me to live as though I’ve done no wrong, when I know in my heart that forgiveness needs to be sought.  I will have to prayerfully consider my words as I sit down to write this long overdue letter.  I’m sure all the familiar anxiety, regret, and bitterness of the situation will creep in as I undertake this task to heal a long-festering wound; even so, I will dwell on the Psalms as I make things right.It would not be right for me to live as though I’ve done no wrong, when I know in my heart that forgiveness needs to be sought.

Has the Lord placed someone on your heart from whom you need to seek forgiveness?  
Have you ever sought forgiveness from someone who was placed on your heart?  What was the outcome?

Check out these posts too…

I'm Not Who I Was (1)

Wrestling with Forgiveness Does it Matter Soul on Fire Worries Down

Does It Matter? Making a Difference

Does It Matter? Making a Difference

Toni was born and raised in a small town in Oklahoma.She graduated from East Central University with a Bachelor's of Science Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Economics.After college, she returned to her hometown to marry her best friend, Charles.Toni is a stay at home mom to their three teens, two boys and a girl, whom God led them to homeschool.Her goal is to raise her children to love and serve the Lord.They live on a farm where they grow produce to sell at several farmers markets.She also plays the piano at church and teaches piano.
Latest posts by Toni D (see all)

A Chance to Show Mercy

About a year ago, I wrote a post on mercy based on something that happened in my life.  How I handled the situation was so unlike me.  A young man had attempted to steal from me.  Instead of pressing charges, I prayed with him and asked that he attend church.  I hugged him, and that was the last time I saw him.  Since then, my heart has been heavy for him, and I have continued to pray for him.

I just learned that he died in a car wreck.  While I do not know the status of his relationship with God, I heard that he had received drug counseling and had cleaned up.  He was trying to get back into school and was getting his life back together.  He apparently had encountered other Christian influences that had helped him through his journey.  Hopefully, through all this, he came to know Christ.

Does It Matter?

I ask, “Does it matter?” because I often wonder if what I do matters.  Sometimes we go through our days seemingly on autopilot.  We don’t take time for others or see how our actions affect others.  We get so caught up in our own busyness.  How does what we do affect others?  We do not think about it.  We seem to just live our lives in our own little world, oblivious to others.

What if we all took the time to notice someone, pay a compliment, pray with someone, make a phone call, or even send a note by (gasp) snail mail?  These small gestures may seem insignificant to you but could change someone else’s entire outlook.  Instead of reacting in anger, say a kind word.  We do not know what others are going through.  Other people have things going on in their lives, too.

Sometimes we go through our days seemingly on autopilot. We don't take time for others or see how our actions affect others.

Making a Difference

In my situation, I received an email from a lady who was involved in the resolution of the issue at the time.  She told me that my “wonderful display of Christian forgiveness was a part of his changing his life.”  At the time of the incident, I did not know if what I did or said made a difference.  I knew he needed help and that was my prayer and hope for this young man, that he change his ways and seek God.

This situation has affected me more than I could have ever imagined.  My heart has been so burdened by this tragic event.  This young man, who had gotten clean and was turning his life around, was taken so early in his life.  I have dwelt on this and wonder about the small part I played in this young man’s life.  Did I do enough?  Did my actions matter?

At the time the original incident occurred, I did not know if my actions made a difference.  I was obedient to what God told me.  Sometimes obedience is difficult, but as God has shown me through this, it does matter.

Is there a situation you wish you could go back and handle differently?

Have you seen the difference something you have done has made to someone else?

Trust in the Lord with all your heartand lean not on your own understanding;in all your ways submit to him,and he will make your paths

Does It Matter- pinterest

Father, May I?

Father, May I?

I am an Oklahoman by birth, a Texan by current living situation, but claim the world as my playground.I love to travel and hope to someday soon take our family on adventures to far off lands, where we can share God with others and experience all the wonders He has created.

I am a mother of 5 crazy, homeschooling children ages 10 & under, wife to an amazing man, and daughter of the King of the Universe!I enjoy reading, making my kids laugh, cooking, all things natural, learning to play guitar and dusting off my piano skills.One day I hope to run again, but until then I’m learning patience.
Latest posts by Kristi F (see all)

It’s May!  Five months have already flown by.  I look at my “To Do” list that I jotted down and planned out at the beginning of the year and only a fraction of the items are crossed off.  At other times in my life, I would have been frustrated beyond words by this, but not this year. This year and the past 9 months have taught me, once again, how we plan our paths but God determines our steps (Proverbs 16:9).  When we humbly ask “Father, May I,” our steps fall in line with God’s will and he may lead us away from even the good things we have planned so that we can follow him in a better way.

This May, I encourage us all to reflect on some basic “Father, May I’s” of this life that will keep us in step with God’s will for our lives!  These are a few that have been on my heart.When we humbly ask “Father, May I,”


Father, May I Walk Worthy

No matter what happens to us circumstantially, may we glorify you, our Father, through our words and actions and not allow Satan to even think he is taking our hope and trust in you away.

We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way:

bearing fruit in every good work,

growing in the knowledge of God,

being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and

giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.

– Paul (Colossians 1:9-13. emphasis added)

Father, May I Live Forgiveness

Forgiveness is a three way street.  Many times we only want to make it two, but it is three. Forgiveness flows from God to us, from us to God, and from us to others.

Do we live like we are forgiven and redeemed by a righteous savior or do we take this for granted?  May we treasure this forgiveness and not take it for granted, but instead live a life that honors the savior who rescued us from our sins.

We typically understand the side of forgiveness that flows from God to us, but what about the forgiveness that flows from us to God.  Of course, God does not need our forgiveness, but some of us have held a grudge against God because of the circumstances of our lives and so we need to break this barrier down by recognizing that God is holy and in order to receive His forgiveness, we must accept His forgiveness wholeheartedly and forgive ourselves for holding the circumstances of life against Him.

Then there is the side of forgiving others.  We do not have to hold ourselves in bondage to the actions of others by waiting for the one who has hurt us to seek forgiveness.  No, they do not have to see our forgiveness for us to forgive them.  There may be people in our lives that do not even know they have hurt us, but instead of carrying this hurt around so that it taints our vision of their every action and brings bitterness to our hearts, ask God to help us forgive those who have hurt us.  Jesus in essence says that if we choose not to forgive someone, we are then choosing not to be forgiven ourselves!  I want to be forgiven, don’t you? Father, may we pray our hearts out that we will willingly forgive others.

For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.
– Jesus (Matthew 6:14-15)
Father, May I Be Fruitful in You

Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control is the fruit of the Spirit.  Many times, we try and try to bear these fruits on our own but that’s impossible.  It is only through Christ’s Spirit being active  in my life will this fruit even be awakened in my heart and actions.  May we stay connected to the true vine and allow the Spirit to guide us so that we can bear fruit in accordance with your will!

Father, May I Be Spirit-led

Acts is one of my favorite books of the Bible because surreal things happen.  One moment Phillip is sent to share the good news with the Ethiopian and then after baptizing the Ethiopian “the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away…”

Philip, Saul/Paul, the other apostles, and so many others allowed the Spirit to lead them.  They don’t stubbornly hold back but let the Spirit lead them at full speed!  They followed the strangest of commands in order to be obedient and honor God with their actions.  We may not be whisked away suddenly, but we will be called out of our comfort zone.  Father, when you call us to act Lord, let us immediately take action and not wait around wanting someone else to take your call.

When God calls you, don't wait for someone else to answer.

There are so many “Father, May I’s” that our heart might be asking and where God might be leading.

What are the “Father, May I’s” that are calling on your heart?

Father, May I- (1) 

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