What is a Devotional.  It comes from the word DEVOTE:  Dedicate. Committed.  Set apart to God.  Hold fast to.  Endure in.  Stand perpetually ready.  persevere in.  To associate closely with.  To attach oneself to.  Be Loyal to.   

And, on and on, each definition, in its various form, calls us to an action.  In this case, we are called to the act of dedicating ourselves to apply what we've read in God's word.  To associate closely with it. 

How sweet it is to spend time in His word.  But if it only lasts for that moment, what good is it?  Carry His words into your day, and begin to be transformed by it.  That's my prayer for you, and for myself. 

  • Walk By Faith

    “Often in the midst of life’s struggles, when we don't understand why something is happening to us, or those around us, we just need to keep our eyes on the Maker. He sees the bigger picture and He sees us. He knows our struggles and what's in our heart of hearts, even when no one else knows we are having a rough morning, day, week, or year. He understands even when no else does. We need to rely on His strength rather than our own. He can (and will) get us through.   - Tanya Smith

    2 Corinthians 5:7 says, “For we walk by faith, not by sight…”   Now look at how verse 8 begins “We are of good courage.”   (nasb)

    We may not see all that God is doing on our behalf, or in our situation, but one thing we can count on is that He sees us.  His name is El Roi, and it means, “The God who sees.”

    It's in Genesis 16 that we first find this name of God mentioned.  El Roi, the God who sees. It's the story of Abram and Sarai. They've had the promise from God to have a son, and yet years have gone by. You might remember, Sarai was already past child bearing age at the time the promise was given, and with time passing by she had become impatient with not having the promised son, so she hatched a plan and gave her maidservant, Hagar, to Abram,  seeking to use her as a surrogate. Hagar conceives, but after the boy is born, things don't work as Sarai planned and she instead becomes jealous.  She mistreats Hagar to the point that one day Hagar runs away, it is then that we have the first mention of El Roi, for God, in His omniscience and omnipresence, speaks to Hagar and she learns that the God of her master Abram sees her, a lowly servant. What an amazing thing. God thought her worthy to speak to. 

    She thought she was all alone in her misery, that no one understood, that no one cared about a woman in her position, but God shows up, He speaks to her, and in that moment, she calls Him, El Roi, the God who sees. 

    What is more important is the fact that God not only saw HER but He sees YOU.  He knows YOUR circumstances and your story.  

    Hagar's story continues with God telling her to go back to her master, that He will be with her.  And she does. And He is.  An interesting point is that He didn’t remove her from the situation but instead promised to be with her IN it.

    He is the God that sees and He sees you.  In fact, we’re told in 2 Chronicles 16:9a that “the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth, that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.” The question then is, is your heart completely His? 

    Whatever your situation, whatever your day may hold, you can face it with courage because He sees you, He is there, just waiting to help you through. Set your heart completely on Him. We may not see how He can, but we can know He is able, because He sees all things. He knows the beginning to the end. He knows how to fix whatever is going on in your life. 

    Be of good courage. Trust Him, He is the God who sees, and He's watching over you.

    "Father, thank You that You are the God who sees. You know our needs and our desires even before we do. You know what is up ahead in the road, and are preparing a way, may we ever walk in faith. Praise You for being a God that is Omniscient and Omnipresent. Help us to trust You today, and to trust You with all of our tomorrows, knowing that You see us. You see us and are eager to help.  In Christ's holy name, Amen."

    An addendum in January of 2020. This was written back in 2015, long before Tanya would endure the crucible of cancer. And we want you to know… God is still El Roi! He was with her, with us, every step of the way as He went before us, behind us and had His hand upon us. God is good to all who seek Him! He makes us courageous, even when! 

Grace to Joy

Encouraging women to know the grace of God and experience His joy!