Friday, May 13, 2016

A Shepherd's Heart: What's In a name? (AKA How the name came about.)

Throughout scripture and History as we know it, names are significant. Whether a force for good or evil, you and I recall names. 

For years I've wanted to share the story of how the name and ministry of A Shepherd's Heart came about and this post is a brief retelling of just that. 

For as long as I can remember, even through hard times of depression and insecurity, I've always been what they call a "people person".  I've been wired to seek out and help meet the needs of others. 

Many years ago the calling on my life became clear and that calling had much to do with shepherding others as a pastor, lay person...shepherding in and out of the church meeting place. Shepherding people helping meet the spiritual and physical needs of others. 

As I read the Bible and started walking more seriously with Christ I learned that God wants shepherds to, as silly as it may sound as it should be a given, shepherd His flock and take it seriously.  It's not always a given today because many have missed or ignored what a call to shepherding is.

Another thing I recognized is that many staff pastors have a very tough job, put in long hours and often need pastoral care themselves however for various reasons, they weren't receiving it. I also recognized that many non-staff people were also hurting and need someone to reach out and care for them as Jesus modeled for us. 

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

A Prayer For Moms - A Prayer for Trust When in Fear - Psalm 56:3 - Wednesday, May 11, 2016

To honor moms during the Month of May, I'm posting a prayer especially for moms! The plan will be to pray through a different Psalm each week. I pray it ministers to you in a special way! Thank you for all you do! This week here's a prayer for you from Psalm 56:3.

Psalm 56:3

Heavenly Father, I ask that you instill your truth in my heart as a mom and as Your Daughter as I read Your truth and pray through it. I thank You and praise You for Who you are,  for loving me unconditionally and for being my strength through the good and the bad days. I need You Father! 

When I am afraid,
I put my trust in you.

Heavenly Father, I know You're my strength and sufficiency but sometimes life gets overwhelming and I slip into fear. 

Too many times I "hit my emotional and physical limit." 

...Help me to turn these times of  fear into faith. 

...Help me to turn from merely my own limited strength and instead rely on Your limitless strength. 

...When I fear for the well-being of my family - help me to trust in You.

...When I fear that I'm just not enough for my children - help me remember whose I am and who I am.

...Help me to remember that I am enough as I'm not alone because You're with me always.

...Help me to remember that I am enough because You are my sufficiency.

...When satan slings lies at me from every angle- help me to trust fully in You and the truth of Your Word. 

...Help me by Your Holy Spirit trust cast out the lies in Jesus name. 

...Please help me trust completely in You in the day-to-day.

...Help me to trust in Your provision, wisdom and direction.

...Help me to lay all my insecurities down at Your feet. 

...Help me to remember that fear is the opposite of faith and trust. 

I praise You and thank You and I ask all these things in His Name, Amen.

In Christ Alone,


Wednesday, May 04, 2016

A Prayer For Moms - A Prayer While Waiting - Psalm 27:14 - Wednesday, May 4, 2016

To honor moms during the Month of May, I'm posting a prayer especially for moms! The plan will be to pray through a different Psalm each week. I pray it ministers to you in a special way! Thank you for all you do! This week here's a prayer for you through Psalm 27:14.

Psalm 27:14

Heavenly Father, I ask that you instill your truth in my heart as a mom and as Your Daughter as I read Your truth and pray through it. I thank You and praise You for Who you are,  for loving me unconditionally and for being my strength through the good and the bad days. I need You Father! 

Wait for the Lord; 

You call me wait on You and trust in You. Please help me to do this through your strength. Help me to wait on You and Lean Upon You when:
...when I'm stressed out
...when my vision is unclear
...when my kids misbehave
...when there are dishes to be done and homework to check
...when there are bills to pay
...when I haven't grown how I want to grow or have too high of expectations on myself
...when I'm up at 3 am with a sick child, again... and I'm very tired
...I face many more circumstances (insert here)

In all circumstances help me to wait on You and trust in You. 
Help me to always look for and expect Your greater reward as You are my / our provider!

be strong, and let your heart take courage; 

I confess that there are times when I fear for my child's/children's future.
I confess that there are times when there seems like too much month at the end of the money and I'm not sure what to do.
I confess that I'm angry toward my kids and sometimes it's because I'm totally spent.
I confess that sometimes I feel like I don't have purpose, that I'm unworthy, that I'm not valuable and much more. Help me to read Your Word especially during these times as Your truth dispels the fear and the truth...Your truth causes the lies I believe about myself to disappear.
I know You understand all these things and nothing is a surprise to You...

So I ask that You would be my strength. 
I ask that You would help me to be strong.
I ask that You would help me to have courage especially to do what is right.
I ask that You help me to give my child's/children's future over to You as you know it already.
I ask that You continue to guide me through sound financial planning and that You'd continue to provide for my family. 
I ask that You help me daily to be good example (Not perfect) for my child/children. 
I ask that You help me be patient with myself and my child/children.
I ask that You would help me understand who I am in Christ.
I ask that You help me learn more and more about the great purpose You have for my life and that I'd walk in it including the gift of being a mom.
I ask that You help me understand and remember that I am worthy because of Christ.
I ask that You help me understand that I am of great worth as Your daughter.
I ask that You help me remember that I don't have to have it all together because You are my strength and sufficiency. 
Help me to carve out daily time with You where I can seek You and hear from You through Your Word and Prayer. 

wait for the Lord!

In all things, again, please help me to wait on You as I cannot do this alone.
I thank You and praise You and I ask all these things in Jesus Name, Amen.

In Christ Alone,


Friday, April 29, 2016

What Does Society Really Want When They Cry Out For Tolerance?

There used to be a time when tolerance essentially meant that we'd all appreciate each others differences and treat one another with respect despite our differences. It seems that those days are long gone. 

Some might argue that this isn't the case or that this is a simplified definitions but you can look no further than social media, TV to see that there isn't much in the way of appreciation rather, you see the opposite of it. 

So, what does society really want when they cry out for tolerance? 

Monday, April 25, 2016

A Prayer for Grace & Truth and the Wisdom to Know How to Apply Them Both - Monday, April 25, 2016

Read: Romans 10:17, John 4:1-26, John 1:14, James 1:5 and Matthew 28:16-20)

Dear Heavenly Father,

In a day and age where sin, confusion and lack of grace and truth abounds - I pray for Your Holy Spirit's help in these matters as we need Your help all the more. 

Some want to throw out truth all together in order to accommodate in "grace and love" even when it's in opposition of the truth of Your Word. Help us to understand that Your truth is part of Your love and faith comes by hearing. (Romans 10:17)

On the other hand some want to throw out grace all together and sometimes hit people over the head with the "truth" when they forget the scriptures teaching about grace and love which is not devoid of truth. (John 4:1-26)

Yet, You oh Lord call us to both in love. 

Monday, April 18, 2016

A Prayer for the Employed and Underemployed - Monday, April 18, 2016

Read:Philippians 4:19, Colossians 3:23-24 & Ephesians 6:7

Dear Heavenly Father, 

I praise You as our provider! Without You...we would have nothing!

No Life...No Job...  No Income... No Food on the table...  and much more that we would not have. Help us to keep this in mind if we're prone to complain specifically about our jobs.

I thank You and praise You for providing work for us to do so we can earn a living and give back from the first fruits of our labor to build Your Kingdom. 

I thank You even for the jobs that You've provided but things aren't going great for us and we may even be stressed out at times or less than excited about what we're doing for work or going through at work. You are there with us and will bring us through. 

I pray that You'd provide meaningful work for us to do and give us the desires of our hearts to be able to make a good living doing what we enjoy and while we sometimes have to wait for that...that You'd continue to provide us with a good income no matter what it is You've given us to do. 

Not that we are worthy or deserving, please help receive and have favor always with our employers and if at all possible that they'd treat us well as our superiors. May they value the contributions we make and may that see the hard work we put it. May they seek to help us have a true life/work balance. 

Help us Father to be content but at the same time not become complacent in what we're doing rather, help us to listen for Your Holy Spirit's leading if it's time to move elsewhere to a place you've also prepared for us. 

Even when we don't receive recognition, even when we aren't valued or are undervalued, may we remember who we ultimately do our work for! (Colossians 3:23-24 & Ephesians 6:7

Help us to not get too discouraged and please help us to continue to press on as we seek to be the best employees for Your glory as well as our good. 

No matter what - I ask that You provide and bless us with continuous employment...however, if there are times where there are gaps in our employment, may You continue to supply for all of our needs. Help us to trust You all the more knowing you have a plan for us!

I especially pray for those unemployed right now that You'd help them have extra faith, hope and trust. 

I pray that You minister to them and bless them in a special way. 

I pray that You give them the desires of their heart by providing good employment where they are able to do something they enjoy and are passionate about and are compensated well! Please cast out all discouragement in their lives Father. 

Father, whether we're employed or underemployed, help us to cling to You at all times knowing that You're always at work and always have been to provide for Your children. 

Where there's discouragement may You insert Your Hope and Encouragement. 

Please also provide us with Your wisdom and direction always. 

May it be clear to all the employed, underemployed and those who are witnesses that You're mighty hand is in and over all things! 

In Jesus Name I praise You and Thank you, Amen.

Blessings in Christ,


Monday, April 11, 2016

A Prayer For When We Have No Words To Pray - Monday, April 11, 2016

Read: Romans 8:26-27

Heavenly Father, 

So often when we're in the midst of trial and overwhelmed, we don't know what to pray or how to pray sometimes. If we're honest, sometimes we just don't have the energy to pray even though we know it's what we really need to do. 

Even in the good times we don't pray as we should.

We complicate things sometimes too thinking we have to have the "perfect" words when there really aren't perfect words and You just want us to be present with You and speak from transparently from the heart. 

We don't praise you as we should...

We don't communicate with You as we should...

We don't pray for others as we should...

We don't pray for ourselves as we should...

As imperfect as we are we do desire to seek You in prayer but, we need Your help.

I ask for Your help and I know that You'll provide it because You're faithful and true!

Helps us to rely on Your Holy Spirit so we'll learn how to pray day-by-day as a first response and not a last response during the good and bad times. 

You teach us in Your Word that when our words fail, when we don't know how to pray that Your Holy Spirit intercedes for us! 

I praise You and thank You for Your help! 

I praise You for loving us so much that You minister to us through Your Holy Spirit in our weaknesses including our wordlessness or prayerlessness.

Help us Father rely on Your Holy Spirit's strength in all things including prayer.

Help us Father to remember that we don't have to have it all together we just need to be faithful to pray no matter what. You know our hearts...that is enough!

Help us to remember that again, when our words fail, when we don't know how to pray, that Your Holy Spirit it there with us and is interceding for us to Your great throne of Grace!

In Jesus Name I praise You and Thank You, Amen.

Blessings In Christ,


Share this with someone today: When the word won't come or you don't know how to pray...don't worry! The Holy Spirit intercedes for you! Romans 8:26-27 @ashepherdsheart

Friday, April 08, 2016


Here's a Friday humor post about excuses - that may make you pause and evaluate things sometime. :-) 

Everybody has a good excuse for not attending church. 

If you take those excuses and apply them to other things we do (or don't do), like eating, they might look like this list:

1. I was forced to eat as a child.
2. People who eat all the time are hypocrites; they aren't really hungry.
3. There are so many different kinds of food, I can't decide what to eat.
4. I used to eat, but I got bored and stopped.
5. I only eat on special occasions, like Christmas and Easter.
6. None of my friends will eat with me.
7. I'll start eating when I get older.
8. I don't really have time to eat.
9. I don't believe that eating does anybody any good.It's just a crutch.
10. Restaurants and grocery stores are only after your money.

All humor aside, there are reasons the Lord wants us to come together as the Body of Christ. 

I encourage you to read and study your Bible to discover what the reasons are,  what your roll is as part of the Body of Christ and the Body of Christ's roll in your life. All important and vital to your walk with The Lord! 


Hebrews 10:25

le emo Hebrews 10:25

Monday, April 04, 2016

A Prayer for Persistence in Prayer (P.U.S.H) - Monday, April 4, 2016

Read: Luke 18:1-8 & James 5:16

Heavenly Father, Please help us to be persistent in prayer. 

No matter what we experience in us to be faithful and tenacious prayer warriors and servants. 

Help us to make prayer a priority at all times.

Even though a lot of our prayer life is in private, there is an aspect of it that is public as we gather in prayer with others. So, please help us to be so persistent in prayer that people see it in us and know that we make You and Your word a priority.

Please help us to actually follow-through in prayer when people entrust us with prayer needs. 

Help us to be persistent like the persistent widow was in getting her case heard!

Help us to prayer throughout the day as we continue to seek You!

I pray that through the help of your Holy Spirit that we would not allow anything to keep us from communicating with You through interceding and petitioning for others and ourselves...and simply having conversations with you. 

Help us to not be afraid of being persistent in prayer because You are not afraid for persistence.   

Lord, we know you use the circumstances in life to shape, mold and change us into useful vessels for You. 

When times seem hopeless or tough - help us to not give up hope in You! Help us to never give up, period as there's always hope in You! 

Help us to keep Praying. 

Help us to keep P.U.S.Hing through! 

Help us to Pray Until Something Happens because You're always at work and Jesus was the best example Himself of regular, faithful and persistent prayer as He'd often escape the busyness of it all and be found communing with You. 

Help us to remember that You're ALWAYS at work for Your Kingdom and Glory and You always hear our prayers! 

Help us to always evaluate our prayer life and adjust it accordingly as we seek to honor You in all things and do what You tell us to do in Your Word!

I praise You for the gift of prayer! Help us to keep fighting through it all to communicate with You!

In Jesus Name I praise You and thank You, Amen. 


Share this with Someone today: "Prayer is very important so don't give up! Keep On PUSHing through! (P.U.S.H. - Pray Until Something Happens)"

Friday, March 25, 2016

We Call It Good Friday...Because it was for Our Good!

Read: Matthew 26:36-28:15, Mark 14:32-16:14, Luke 22:39-24:53, and John 18-21:14.

It was the darkest day of all time. The day Jesus Christ the Savior was crucified. Humanly speaking, there was nothing good about that day. Everything went south in a hurry! The Gospels recount for us the physical and verbal abuse that was inflicted on Jesus and that He bore on our behalf. The shouts of, “crucify Him, crucify Him,” The blows to His body by the whips and rods, The suffering of carrying the cross on the road to Golgotha. The nails driven into his wrists and feet, the anguish as He hung on the cross with a sign above Him mockingly stating who He was, yet with no crime committed, He was crucified.

The vinegar given to Him to drink instead of water when He was thirsty, Then His last words and last breathe- it was finished. Simply unfathomable what He endured! Yet, because of the Father's divine plan of redemption, Jesus, long before He would come to earth in the humble form of man, God chose to send Him as the payment for our sins and the way of salvation. The scriptures also state in the prophetic books of the Old Testament that the Father was pleased to crush Him. This was because He loves us so much He wanted to do everything possible for us to see the folly of our ways and that Jesus is, and came as - the Savior. Jesus is the only plan of Salvation for us from the heart of God. There is no other way we can earn or work our way to heaven. Because of sin we aren’t worthy of God’s forgiveness. Through Jesus Christ we are worthy- only because of His death on the cross.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Our Patient Savior - A Reflection On The Saving Work of Christ

The Word:

Read: 2 Peter 3:9, John 19, Galatians 5:22-23

There have been many occasions in my life and most likely yours, when I needed to refer to a dictionary. I remember when I was a kid I always asked my mom what a word meant or how it was spelled. As I recall, most of the time she would say to me, "Use the dictionary." She wanted me know what the words meant for myself and to rely on the dictionary as a constant resource for my spelling needs. As an adult you'd think I'd stop asking what something means or how it was spelled, but I've found as I search the scriptures that there is always a use for a regular or a Biblical dictionary. It is amazing what you'll find as you refresh your memory of a spelling or a definition. 

On one occasion I looked up the word "patient". I found the word in the dictionary and read the definitions that accompanied it. I was in for a surprise on this occasion because we all use the word patient but do we know what it totally means? In the particular compact Webster's Dictionary I was using it laid out the following as the first definition:
        "Patient - Enduring affliction or pain without anger or complaint."

Pause for a moment and let that definition soak in...

Monday, March 21, 2016

A Prayer For More Passion for Christ as we remember the Passion of Christ - Monday, March 21, 2016

Read: Luke 22:39-46, John 19, Luke 23:34 and Luke 9:23

Heavenly Father, 

As we enter "Passion Week", please help us to have more passion for Christ and live more passionately as we follow Christ. 

Father, we so often reserve our awe, wonder and reverence for all You've done for us through Jesus, for different times of year, but, I ask that You help us to live in the awe, wonder and reverence day-to-day as we seek to make Your name great. 

May we live for Your Kingdom and glory all the more as we recall His ultimate sacrifice. 

Help us to remember the events leading up to Him taking the cross on our behalf. May this keep us sober at all times and never take Your love, grace, truth and sacrifice for granted. 

As we remember how He was betrayed, please help us to never betray You or the people You bring into our paths. 

As we remember His prayer in the garden in anticipation of what He was soon to take on for us, even to the point where He sweat blood, helps us to pray fervently at all times for Your Will, Your Heart, Your Kingdom, Your People, Your Glory and Your plan. 

Help us to toil, sweat, and sacrifice it all if You ask it of us. 

As Jesus asked while nailed to the cross, "Father Forgive them as they no not what they do", help us to readily forgive others for even the most trivial things they do to us. 

Help us to willingly take up our cross daily and follow Jesus as He willingly took the cross for mankind. 

Help us to live fully for You!

Again, Father, I ask that You help us by Your Spirit to have more Passion for Christ as we reflect on The Passion of Christ this week and beyond. 

In Jesus Name I praise You and Thank You, Amen. 


Share this with someone this week: "It's important that we live passionately for Christ beyond Passion Week!" 

Friday, March 18, 2016

Will the Real St. Patrick Please stand up?

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Even if you’re not a wee bit Irish, there is a lot we can learn from the life of St. Patrick. There are a lot of legends/myths about Him but it’s good to separate fact from fiction and today I’m posting a few links to articles about his life which you’ll find below. Also, if you ever have an opportunity to watch an hour long docudrama about his life that was narrated by Liam Neeson, I’d highly recommend it. I believe it was simply called, "Patrick". I'm sure you'll be able to locate it via your favorite search engine.

While I agree that St. Patrick's life is one to celebrate and it's OK to have some fun in celebrating, St. Patrick's Day is not about hitting the pubs, shamrocks and the "Luck of the Irish" like many make it. His life was far more significant to the faith community and in the history of Ireland in comparison to these temporal things. 

After a brief glimpse into the life of St. Patrick you'll see some great reminders and examples regarding God's grace. 

One of those lessons I see is that we need to allow God to use and direct our path no matter what the circumstances and no matter if what we're going through makes sense or not. God is more than able to take someone out of slavery, (like Patrick) or any dire situation and use them for His glory in proclaiming His message. 

St. Patrick wasn't even from Ireland but God used him there to bring His message to the Emerald Island and because of this - many came to a saving grace thanks to God!

Here’s a selection of articles for your edification:

Lastly, I wanted to leave you with an Old Irish Blessing:

"May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back."

"May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields."

"And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand."

                                ~An Old Irish Blessing

Have an excellent day!

Many Blessing in Christ,


#stpatricksday #stpatrick #faith #hope #wisdom #life #liveforGod #freedom #Christian #ChristIsAll #ashepherdsheart

Monday, March 14, 2016

A Prayer for When We Battle Anxiety - Monday, March 14, 2016

Read: Matthew 6:25-34 and Philippians 4:6

Heavenly Father, I pray for those who are battling or suffering from anxiety...or may in the future.

When we face these times, please help us to...

 ...abide in Your Word so we know and are growing in Your truth. 

...insert Your truth where any anxious thought comes to mind. 

...not worry about the basic provision, food, clothing, shelter, etc as You have all these things covered. 

...remember that You even provide for the birds so again, You will provide for us.

...remember that You even clothe flowers in the field....You will provide all the more for us because You love us!

...remember that we can't add even a day to our lives...only You can!

...not worry about anything and instead put our hope, trust, confidence and faith you.

...not worry about anything but instead, pray.

...remember our battle is also often a spiritual one.

…remember that our battle is not ours alone because you battle with us and go before us!

...armor up...pray on Your full armor to fight the spiritual battle. grateful for what we have so we don't feed ungratefulness for what we don't which in turn can cause anxiety. thankful in all things. have joy even amidst sadness. You immediately when people hurt us and cause us to become anxious. 

...not dwell on things that we know will cause us to withdraw, become anxious, sad, lonely or experience further pain. thankful for Your grace and love. there for others who are having anxiety issues....helping encourage them and also point them to You!

In the midst of fear, please give us Your peace. 

When we feel alone, please surround us with your presence helping us to remember we're never alone because You're with us always. 

Please give us an extra portion of Your strength during these times.

Please help us make it through each day with Your Holy Spirit's help. 

Thank You for the gift of prayer. 

In Jesus name I praise you and thank you, Amen! 


P.S. Share this with someone today:

"Being anxious doesn't do anything for you but having faith in God, abiding in His Word and constant prayer does!"