Waiting for God – Welcome and Book Giveaway!

Some of you may notice my website looks different.

I’d like to thank Juanita Johnson for sponsoring the makeover and Marty Longe from Umbrella Graphics for working with me to create the new design.

Now that the brand-new website has been launched, I’ll be adding a quarterly newsletter that will include exclusive giveaway opportunities, ministry updates, and new content.

On September 25, 2019, I’ll return to sending you weekly encouragement and prayers.

But from August 19, 2019 to September 20, 2019, we’re going to rejoice in the Lord as we discuss the end-of-chapter questions on my blog.

Those who join the conversation and share their answers in the comment section under the daily posts will be included in the weekly giveaways.

“Together, we will inhale the truth of Scripture, exhale prayers of honesty and belief, and find rest in God’s enduring love . . . all while we’re still waiting and trusting daily in His plan and pace.” (Waiting for God, p. 7)

— Book Giveaway —

I’m grateful for every person who participated in last week’s book giveaway by leaving a comment or emailing encouraging notes.

Rebecca Grabill will receive the signed copy of Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace with a free tote.

But to thank you for being a member of my blog family and to welcome new subscribers as we celebrate the release of Waiting for God, I’m also offering a FREE prayer book.

Please take a moment to download Wait Like a Warrior: 1-Minute Prayers to Refresh Your Spirit When the Wait Feels Endless (pdf) from the FREE GIFT section on my Homepage.

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If you know someone who will be encouraged by reading Waiting for God and joining our blog family, please invite them to subscribe today.

I look forward to growing with you!

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Praise, Updates, and Waiting for God Book Giveaway

Waiting for God - Callie at ODB - Aug 7, 2019“My heart rejoices in the LORD; in the LORD my horn is lifted high. My mouth boasts over my enemies, for I delight in your deliverance. There is no one holy like the LORD; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God.” 1 Samuel 2:1-2 (NIV)

So much has happened since I’ve the last time we met here, Blog Family.

I’ve wrestled with God and my jumbled emotions through prayer after my doctor said, “This could be your life. Pain management may be all we can do.”

I pouted with pity-party sobs and praised Jesus from wah-wah-whining to worship-filled tears as He lifted my eyes toward hope and breathed a little faith into my prayers.

My last test procedure intended to help manage my severe back, neck, and shoulder pain worked better than my doctor expected, so we submitted a request to the insurance. In hopes of a successful treatment, I planned to enroll Callie into the service dog training program with Jacob Guell at Tails for Life.

Within weeks, reality dashed my high hopes.

The insurance refused to pay for the procedure that had given me more pain relief than any other procedure I endured over the last seven years. The treatment fell under what they dubbed as experimental. So, I would have to pay out of pocket.

Imagining six-figure bills in my mind, I feared calling to find out how much the procedure would cost.

To my delight, the money we’d earmarked for Callie’s training would cover the costs. Hallelujah!

But I would not be able to pay for Callie’s program with Tails for Life.

Disappointment stirred in my heart as I surrendered the situation to the Lord and called to cancel Callie’s training. But Jake encouraged me to consider a fundraiser.

I requested help through my blog and social media on May 26, 2019.

Within four days, sponsors paid for Callie’s training in full.

 Thank You, Jesus!

I’d like to give a shout-out to the generous sponsors who have joined me as ministry partners by investing in Callie’s service training.

Callie started training at Tails for Life on July 9, 2019 and she already did a fabulous job at her first official ministry event.

On Wednesday, August 7, 2019, we celebrated the release of Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace and shared a message at the Our Daily Bread Ministries chapel.

You can join us for worship and watch the video at Behold: The Power of Living with Holy Vision (Facebook).

MEME - Waiting for God Available Now - Love Neighbor - Aug 7, 2019Through this awesome launch party and the help of my wonderful group of Praying-Peeps who have shared Waiting for God online and through in-person encounters, the Lord has been placing copies of Waiting for God into the hands of readers.

God’s wonderful people have pre-ordered so many books that Amazon was out of stock the day after we launched the Waiting for God!

And at 4 pm on August 11th (four days after our release date), Amazon posted this message under Waiting for God: Only 16 copies in stock (more on the way).

Thank You, Lord!

Please join me in spreading the word about Waiting for God so that Amazon will place multiple orders for more books.

Waiting for God is also available at Barnes and Noble, ChristianBook, and Discovery House Publishers.

And you can bless this writer by leaving a review of Waiting for God on one or more of these sites. Reviews make a difference!

Rejoice! Rejoice! Rejoice in the Lord! The good news is not over.

 I’m excited to announce that I’ve been working with a talented designer who has given my website a makeover. After the reveal, scheduled for next week, this website will look different . . . better . . . and be easier to navigate!

Current subscribers will continue automatically receiving new posts and will be invited to request the free gift I’m offering new subscribers.

I’ll be posting new encouragement devotions and prayers weekly and will add a quarterly newsletter that will include exciting updates, upcoming events, and exclusive new projects that will not be available online.

For the first thirty-three days after we reveal the new website, I’ll release behind-the-scenes stories, photos, and reader testimonies as I share my answers to the end-of-chapter questions and invite you to join the conversation.

Subscribers will receive special invitations during this celebration month to participate in fun giveaway opportunities exclusively designed to show my appreciation for you‒my blog family.

In my next post, I’ll invite you to return to this cyber-spot and explore the new website.

I hope you’ll join me for the adventure as we rejoice with Spirit-empowered courage and confidence while Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace.

 But today, I want to thank you for being a part of my blog family.

BOOK GIVEAWAY: I’m giving away one copy of Waiting for God to one person in the continental U.S. on Wednesday, August 14, 2019 at 8 p.m. (CST).

To participate in this giveaway, leave a comment under this blog post. I’d love to hear more about your waiting season so we can pray together as we trust daily in God’s plan and pace.

I’ll randomly choose one person who lives in the continental United States to receive a signed copy of Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace.

Even if you already have a copy or have already ordered copies of Waiting for God, don’t worry.

After reading a few chapters of Waiting for God, some readers have emailed me to let me know they are loving their neighbors by ordering extra copies to give as gifts.

 To God be the glory, the honor, and the praise, praise, praise!

I’m looking forward to growing with you!

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Congratulations, Rebecca Grabill! I’m looking forward to sending you a signed copy of Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace. Please email me your mailing address.

I appreciate everyone who took time to leave a comment. I’ll be sharing more giveaway opportunities soon!

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Because Jesus Lives . . . for Us!

Blog - Because Jesus Lives for Us - John 20 v 31 - April 21, 2019Suggested Reading: John 19-20

Stilled by a bout with sickness, I sat on the sidelines as folks prepared fancy Easter outfits and meals, stuffed colorful baskets with gifts and goodies, and planned fun activities for children.

Spring suits and dresses.

Egg hunts and family photos.

This year, all of our traditions remained packed in totes.

The scenery on Easter Sunday didn’t look the same in Wisconsin.

I missed the sunny weather and the fragrant flowers decorating our California back yard.

I missed the laughter as our sons searched for candy and cash stashed in plastic eggs ruthlessly hidden in the nooks and crannies of our two-story home.

Sadness tugged on my heart and nudged me into a full-blown pity-party. I nursed my cold and waved as my husband headed to church.

I wanted to go with him. I wanted to spend Easter with our sons. I wanted to have more energy, less pain, more laughter, less grief, more blessings, less trials.

Discontent didn’t make a cute Easter outfit, so I repented.

As I settled in to watch the live-stream video of the service, the Lord tugged my focus to a different place, a quiet place, a sobering place . . . at the foot of the cross.

Betrayed and abandoned, mocked and rejected, Jesus stood silently before His raging accusers, and endured torture (John 19:1-17). As He hung on the cross, Jesus provided for His mother (John 19:25-27).

I am a face in the crowd along with Jesus’s mother, covered by a cloak of Christ’s unending compassion.

As God in the Flesh experienced excruciating physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual pain, He thought of those He loved before the beginning of time.

He thought of . . . me.

But how often do I think of Him?

Do I ever stop “wanting something else” long enough to consider the weight of the cross on Jesus’s wounded back?

Do I think of the pain caused when the soldiers struck Jesus across the face, when they flogged Him with barbed and splintered weapons?

The punishment I deserve was heaped onto Jesus, the only one who can ever claim innocence.

God in the Flesh allowed the soldiers to ridicule and abuse Him, tearing into His flesh and His heart as they beat Him . . . instead of me.

Do I live like I know the value of each moment the Messiah stood silently, bleeding as mockers spit in His face, accepting the cruel sentence meant for me?

Do I stand in awe of Christ’s holiness as He restrained His limitless power and willingly accepted each blow so that the God-breathed words of Scripture would be fulfilled . . . simply because He loved . . . loves me?

The blood-stained cross, of Christ’s nail-pierced wounds and heart-wrenching cries to the Father, came at a great cost . . . yet, I pay nothing.

Do I “look on the one they have pierced” (John 19:37) with iron nails as the jagged splinters of the cross pressed against the deep-wounds stinging His flesh?

Do I consider the price Jesus paid when chose to take on my sins and be separated from the Father, accepting death and being left in a dark tomb that was truly meant for me?

Do I truly rejoice in the gift of the empty tomb as I proclaim Christ as the Risen King (John 20) who lives to give life-transforming love to the rejected, the forgotten, the marginalized, the doubters, and the worst of sinners . . . like me?

As I read through the gospel of John, do I remember that each word is written that we “may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God,” and that by believing we may have “life in His name” (John 20:30-31)?

Today, I didn’t feel well. I struggled with pain and fatigue. I became frustrated with the symptoms of my cold and discouraged because I can’t take medication for cold symptoms. But by God’s incredible grace, I celebrated Easter with my heart focused on the foot of the cross.

As we consider the cost of Jesus’s personal sacrifice, we can learn to appreciate the value of the blood He shed and embrace the sobering reality that comes with believing that Jesus died and rose and lives for us.

Oh, what a gift it is to be loved so much . . . by God!

When Jesus made His way to the cross . . . He thought of us.

When Jesus died on that cross . . . He thought of us.

When Jesus rose after three days in that tomb . . . He thought of us.

Jesus thought of us when He promised to send us the Wise Counselor, His Spirit who would reveal His truth to us and empower us to live for Him and share Him with others (John 20:19-22).

God in the Flesh, the Second Person in the Trinity, Jesus thought of us . . . Jesus thinks of us.

No matter what we’re facing in life, we can rise up in victory, walk in power, move forward in hope, and breathe faith-filled prayers with confidence, because . . . Jesus lives . . . for us.

Hallelujah!

Lord Jesus, we love You and praise You and thank You for the unchanging truth that changes us and gives us an eternal perspective through which we can view the situations we face each day. Oh, how easily we can brush aside Your priceless love when we get consumed with our busyness, when we get overwhelmed by our selfishness, when we get lost in the mess of our fleshly discontent that tempts us to desire something more or something else. Thank You for coming to save us, for dying for us, for living for us. Please help us to receive Your intimate love, to be forever transformed and empowered by Your constant presence as we live in the shadow of the Good News . . . forever freed and victorious in You. In Jesus’s name, Amen.

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How does your perspective on trials and triumphs change when you know that Jesus thought of you when He died for you and rose for you, that Jesus thinks of you every moment of every day?

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J9379To pre-order your copy of Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace today, please visit my Amazon Author Page. We’ll be going through the daily devotions on this blog after the book releases on August 7, 2019. I look forward to growing with you!

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Waiting for God Pre-Order Party

Waiting for God - Pre-Order Announcement 1 - 2019My first full-length devotional, Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace, is available for Pre-Order on Amazon!

To God be the glory, the honor, and the praise, praise, praise!

I used to be toe-tapping impatient when standing in lines. I would get irritated when I made a phone call and was left on hold. My inability to embrace the act of waiting when juggling life’s small frustrations became more evident when I faced heart-wrenching delays.

Waiting was not a welcome part of my life, especially when the wait was accompanied by physical or emotional pain.

When I first surrendered my life to Jesus, a friend warned me not to pray for patience. So what was I supposed to do? How was I going to deal with the inevitable waiting seasons in life if I couldn’t be honest and ask God for help?

After my battle with chronic pain became overwhelming, I longed for comfort, for peace, for revitalized strength and realized patience has nothing to do with trusting God in the wait.

Patience requires us to suppress rather than process feelings and is reliant on our ability to control our actions and attitudes in our own strength.

Over the years, I’ve learned the futility of self-help and will-power.

So, instead of trying harder, I admitted my weaknesses.

Sick of being burdened by anxious thoughts and tired of feeling stuck, I cried out to God. With Spirit-empowered strength, I looked for Bible verses to help me trust the Lord when the wait felt endless. I reflected on how other faith-warriors leaned on God while facing difficult situations.

My search for enduring hope revealed unexpected answers.

I didn’t need more patience. I needed a new perspective on the Maker of Time’s purpose of waiting.

As I inhaled God’s Word, I exhaled in prayer and experienced the power of resting in God’s love.

Now, I have the privilege of sharing my journey with you.

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J9379What others are saying about Waiting for God?

“If your heart is weary and longing for answers—for healing, for provision, for miracles—Waiting for God renews your hope with strong biblical truth and encouraging Scripture-based prayer.

Conquer your fears and frustrations as you inhale God’s Word, exhale in prayer, and rest in God’s love. Live a life of deeper connection and immediate communion with God that can lead to contentment in His constant presence, no matter what your days hold or how long God’s deliberate delays may last.

Xochitl Dixon writes each chapter with heart-touching transparency and vulnerability, as she shares her own story as well as the stories of others who are trusting God through waiting seasons with no apparent end in sight. As a woman who lives with chronic pain, Xochitl understands constant struggle yet chooses to put God on the throne of her life.”

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Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace is available for pre-order on Amazon and scheduled for release on August 7, 2019.

I’m looking for readers willing to join me for this pre-order party and to prayerfully consider reading through one chapter a day with me after the book is released.

I’ll be offering exclusive giveaways to readers who join the conversation as we discuss the end-of-chapter reflection questions, which are designed for personal and group study.

Please take a moment to follow my Amazon Author Page and pre-order your copy of Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace.

Please also leave a comment below to share how I can pray with you as you continue waiting for God and trusting daily in His plan and pace . . . one breath at a time.

I look forward to growing with you!

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