The Lord said ..get ready to cross..into the land…I will give you every place where you set your foot Joshua 1:1-3

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27

Grabbing a quick bite before getting back in the car, I struck up a conversation with a cheery woman in the café. I commented on her nifty silver sneakers. She replied, "They are so comfortable, and I have to be on my feet all day. You know, I used to work with horses, and you know what they always say (I didn't), if you don't take care of their feet then the horse won't be worth anything."

If shoes hurt my feet, it's a miserable feeling. Plus it incapacitates me getting around. How important are good shoes for the well-being of our feet, and for us?

Later that morning I was donning my spiritual clothing for the day, the armor of God. (Eph 6). When I got to the feet part, it grabbed me – put on the sandals, the shoes, of peace.

Jesus Himself is our Peace (Eph. 2:14) when we are walking in His shoes we live a life of forgiveness, kindness, honesty, love, and peace.

Taking care of my feet is absolutely important! Not a problem, with the right kind of, right-fitting, one-size-fits- all shoes of Peace.


"Each one of you is a Son of God because of your faith in Christ Jesus" - Galatians 3:26

Even as a child, this counselee of mine did not receive enough praises or encouragement from her parents and siblings. Only criticisms when she erred. Naturally, her self-esteem was damaged. And it took its toll in her married life.

Now, her husband gone to another woman, she lives as a single mother to two kids and she is struggling to find a way to support them - both materially and emotionally. In our sessions, I focused on her self-esteem because I knew it was her low self-worth that made her repeat harmful behavior patterns, which is her real problem. She has to realize that she was a child of God. And this means she is loved.

The root of all codependency is a love hunger, which can be filled by the Lord mainly.

That is why there is hope for those of us with a broken past. A good grounding in the Lord will see us through.

KEEPERS By Sally I. Kennedy

How blessed the hearers and keepers of...all the words written in this book! Rev. 1:3

With strains of Auld Lang Syne ringing in the air, I was thinking of what things to change, what things to keep, and what things to get rid of in the NewYear. My husband is a keeper. He keeps things a long time. Like coats. And favorite shirts. He's not a pack rat, but he knows what he likes and he holds onto them.

One thing he, my sons and grandsons, all enjoy doing is fishing. Ben has mentioned that fishing rules have become more stringent. He has to sometimes check and see if it's a "keeper". Apparently fines are heavy for keeping a fish that is undersized, or for keeping too many over the quota for the day's catch.

Isn't that just like God with His kids? He not only loves us, He likes us. He knows what He likes, and He holds onto them. Good thing for us, there's no quota, and no limit.

Yup, God.......He' s a keeper. He knows what He likes, and keeps them a long time. Like, forever.

That is good news.

TAKE IT WITH YOU By Sally I. Kennedy

Take it with you and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Eph 6:17

Most days when I leave home I have my cell phone glued to me. In the unlikely event that I forget to take it with me, I turn around and go back and get it if possible.

For a lot of years I got along fine without a cellular phone. “What’s so important about having it now”, I asked myself just this week, “especially all the time?” There is something more important to have when I leave home – or even at home. Armor, spiritual armor.

When Paul wrote a letter to the people at a church in Ephesus, he closed it with an important wrap-up, instructions on putting on this armor, and what it’s for. You never know what a day will bring. It is a more-than-good idea to not leave home without it, your spiritual armor.

‘A final word... put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared..hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.’ Ephesians 6: 10-17


1. Plan ahead. It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark.

2. Stay fit. When you're 600 years old, someone might ask you to do something REALLY big.

3. Don't listen to critics -- do what has to be done.

4. Build on high ground.

5. For safety's sake, travel in pairs.

6. Two heads are better than one.

7. Speed isn't always an advantage. The cheetahs were on board, but so were the snails.

8. If you can't fight or flee -- float!

9. Take care of your animals as if they were the last ones on earth.

10. Don't forget that we're all in the same boat.

11. When the doo-doo gets really deep, don't sit there and complain -- shovel!!!

12. Stay below deck during the storm.

13. Remember that the ark was built by amateurs and the Titanic was built by professionals.

14. If you have to start over, have a friend by your side.

15. Remember that the woodpeckers INSIDE are often a bigger threat than the storm outside.

16. Don't miss the boat.

17. No matter how bleak it looks, there's always a rainbow on the other side.

18. "Stop what you are doing, and do what God says!"

A PLUS By Sally I. Kennedy

“I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it." Mark 10:15

McCallen has great big-as-saucer round brown eyes. Her hair is shiny and dark. She has a dynamite smile and creamy olive complexion. She’s our very wonderful, special grandchild. McCallen is as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside, with her gentle, loving, and kind nature.

A couple of years ago, her parents were with her at a new school for some testing. The facilitator had been showing McCallen oversized flash cards, with symbols and pictures on them, and asking her to talk about them.

After a while, she began to fidget. She’d about had enough when the next card came up with a “plus” sign on it. Without hesitation, her eyes lit up and she responded enthusiastically. “Jesus!”.

Sometimes kids catch on quicker than “grown-ups”. During the years of Jesus’ teaching and ministry here on earth, He once said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children.” (Matthew 11:25)

A “plus” usually means extra, a bonus, or perk. To McCallen, the plus sign represented a cross. I believe she knows a cross is not just a “plus”, but everything, because it means Jesus.


1. If you feel far away from God, guess who moved?
2. Fear knocked. Faith answered. No one was there.
3. What you are is God's Gift to you. What you become is your gift to God.
4. I am God's Melody of life and He Sings His Song through me.
5. We can never really go where God is not, and where He is, all is well.
6. No matter what is happening in your life, know that God is Waiting for you with open Arms.
7. God Promises a safe landing, not a calm passage.
8. Do your best and then sleep in peace. God is Awake.
9. God has a Purpose and Plan for me that no one else can fulfill.
10. The Will of God will never take you to where the Grace of God will not protect you.
11. We are responsible for the effort, not the outcome.
12. We set the sail; God makes the wind.
13. Begin to weave and God will Give you the thread.
14. When God says "no", it's because He has something better in store for you.
15. The task ahead of us is never as great as the Power behind us.
16. Prayer: don't bother to give God instructions, just report for duty.
17. It's my business to do God's Business and it's His Business to take care of my business.
18. Serenity is not freedom from the storm, but peace amid the storm.
19. How come you're always running around looking for God? He's not lost.

LOCKED DOORS By Sally I Kennedy

The door slammed shut. We were having dinner, and even with the animated chatter I could hear it bang closed.

When we have family get-togethers, it's a fun time for the kids to turn the workshop room into their clubhouse. Handwritten signs soon decorate the door: "Keeep Out!!", "No girls allowed", "boys only".

I headed back to check things out. Although we have a 'management rule' about locking doors, that sometimes seems to get ignored. Sure enough, the clubhouse door was locked. They were having a great time. The cookie stash was in one corner, and they were making all kinds of spy and stakeout plans, very busy indeed.

In our lives, don't we too, have locked doors? Places we have unknown secret desires, hopes, hurts? Locked away. Kept at bay, unspoken. When I think about that, I realize that is true for myself.

Still, God is the God of the breakthrough. He can step into closed off, locked doors and areas in our hearts, and in our minds. And when He does, He says, "Peace be with you". Peace be with YOU.

Come, Lord Jesus. Come today through locked doors, even those we may not realize we have. Thank You for coming with a breaker anointing, love, and healing. Amen.


The Special Feeling That Makes You Feel
All Warm And Wonderful.

Treating Others As Well
As You Would Like To Be Treated.

To Be Grateful For All The Good Things
Life Has To Offer.

The Full Enjoyment Of Each Moment.
A Smiling Face.

The Ability To Let Things Be
Without Anger.

The Joy Of Giving
Without Thought Of Receiving.

The Quality Of Always
Telling The Truth.

The Purity Of Doing What's Right,
No Matter What.

The Essence Of Feeling Another's Pain,
While Easing Their Hurt.

The Reward For Living
The 10 Most Important Things.

JIGSAW PUZZLE By Sally I Kennedy

Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.....each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:34

Life was a slow, easy pace, at the cottage on the lake, where I spent many summers as a child. There was always a jigsaw puzzle on the cardtable. Somehow it was like a magnet, drawing me as I passed by, "Sit down, and put that one piece in."

Early on, we had photos of puppies and kittens in baskets with large pieces. Later, country landscapes with tiny pieces. As soon as we'd finish one, we'd begin another. Dump out the box. Save any pieces already stuck together for a head start. Prop up the lid so the finished picture was visible.

Soon puzzle pieces would be scattered everywhere on the table top. Mom taught us, "Separate the pieces with straight, outside edges. Find the four corners, and make the frame before starting the rest."

What if there had been no cover picture to guide us and help put the pieces together? We don't have a lid to look at, with a finished photo, for the puzzles of our lives. God, however, knows exactly and precisely what the picture looks like.

I recall my sister would pick up a piece and determinedly say, "This fits!", as she forced the cardboard into the space. How often I try to sqeeze something into my life that is not supposed to be there, not designed for that particular time and place.

One day at a time, as we turn our lives over to Him, the Lord give us a piece for the day. "It's a puzzlement!"...the King of Siam, to Anna, in the musical, The King and I. Yes, well, not to Someone.

That's good news with heavenly hope.


I enjoy puttering in the yard, so clipping the rose bushes was enjoyable. I picked up the clippings, discarded them and removed my “yard” clothes and shoes.

A problem happened a few days later as I was puttering in the yard barefooted. I stepped into the rose garden to pick up a few dead clippings I had missed and I felt the sting of the thorn even as it pushed through the bottom of my foot. Limping away, I assumed it would work itself out. No such luck.

By that evening the spot was very sore and red, and I could see a small black dot (thorn) embedded in the sole of my foot. “Time to get the needle out”, I thought. I prodded and picked, only pushing it deeper into my foot.” Ouch! That really hurts,” I thought, as I now could bear no weight upon my heel. Something so small… causing so much pain. The pain was personified with each step I took. I actually had to limp around the rest of the day. I tried several other remedies to rid myself of the painful thorn which had invaded my body, and, finally it worked itself out.

I have also had a thorn of anxiety in my life. Have you? Something unwanted invades your life and…boom!....the pain begins. Self help methods didn’t remove the thorn of anxiety. Reading the Bible didn’t help, either. (sorry to say) Listening to praise music, or singing praise choruses weren’t working either. Prayers of friends were appreciated, but didn’t seem to cure my pain. Meditating on a particular scripture was beneficial, but the thorn of anxiety still remained. I was limping around in my daily existence, feeling the pain of the thorn of anxiety. I knew what I had to do, and finally- once and for all- I gave my thorn of anxiety to God. I asked for His peace to fill me and to realize- once again- He was, and IS , in control.

Jesus told us - “Be anxious for nothing”. In this life we are hit with circumstances from right and left that can cause us anxiety- mild to severe. No matter the size, the cause, the circumstance, the bleak outlook or the weight we feel on our shoulders,we HAVE to “give it to God” (problem) and allow Him to take care of it.

Amen? Amen.


My heart goes out to the parents of small children. I know first hand the kind of problems they face. Training up a toddler in the way he should go is a constant job, a continuous battle, seven-day-a-week task, not to mention an awesome responsibility.

After six days of their whining chorus at home and three hours of embarrassment while shopping, the last thing some young mothers want to face is an hour of agony and humiliation at church. Many young mothers have asked herself, “Why do I keep bringing them to church?” As she enters the auditorium she utters a silent prayer that the kids will be good and the sermon short. The service begins. While mother is picking up toys, drying eyes, wiping noses, swatting, scolding, trying to sing, listen, and pray, the toddler is pouring juice on her dress. To the toddler, church is an exciting adventure. Songbooks are a challenge to take, stuffed toys make great missiles to launch over four or five rows, and the collection plate would make a great hat. Young parents take heart! Let me assure you of this:

1. Your children do not disturb others nearly as much as you think they do.

2. If people without children are determined to sit at the back of the church, then they deserve any distraction they get.

3. Most people really do understand your plight and remember back to the days when their children were infants and toddlers.

4. Remember that you are both wanted and needed in the worship service.

5. Have faith that the hand, which now hurls crayons, will one day spread the seeds of the Kingdom.

THE PAINTING Author Unknown

A wealthy man and his son loved to collect rare works of art.

They had everything in their collection, from Picasso to Raphael. They would often sit together and admire the great works of art.

When the Vietnam conflict broke out, the son went to war. He was very courageous and died in battle while rescuing another soldier. The father was notified and grieved deeply for his only son.

About a month later, just before Christmas, there was a knock at the door. A young man stood at the door with a large package in his hands.

He said, "Sir, you don't know me, but I am the soldier for whom your son gave his life. He saved many lives that day, and he was carrying me to safety when a bullet struck him in the heart and he died instantly. He often talked about you, and your love for art."

The young man held out this package. "I know this isn't much. I'm not really a great artist, but I think your son would have wanted you to have this."

The father opened the package. It was a portrait of his son, painted by the young man. He stared in awe at the way the soldier had captured the personality of his son in the painting. The father was so drawn to the eyes that his own eyes welled up with tears. He thanked the young man and offered to pay him for the picture.

"Oh, no sir, I could never repay what your son did for me. It's a gift."

The father hung the portrait over his mantle. Every time visitors came to his home he took them to see the portrait of his son before he showed them any of the other great works he had collected.

The man died a few months later. There was to be a great auction of his paintings. Many influential people gathered, excited over seeing the great paintings and having an opportunity to purchase one for their collection.

On the platform sat the painting of the son.

The auctioneer pounded his gavel. "We will start the bidding with this picture of the son. Who will bid for this picture?"

There was silence.

Then a voice in the back of the room shouted, "We want to see the famous paintings. Skip this one."

But the auctioneer persisted. "Will somebody bid for this painting. Who will start the bidding? $100, $200?"

Another voice angrily. "We didn't come to see this painting. We came to see the Van Goghs, the Rembrandts. Get on with the real bids!"

But still the auctioneer continued. "The son! The son! Who'll take the son?"

Finally, a voice came from the very back of the room. It was the longtime gardener of the man and his son. "I'll give $10 for the painting." Being a poor man, it was all he could afford.

"We have $10, who will bid $20?"

"Give it to him for $10. Let's see the masters."

"$10 is the bid, won't someone bid $20?"

The crowd was becoming angry. They didn't want the picture of the son. They wanted the more worthy investments for their collections.

The auctioneer pounded the gavel. "Going once, twice, SOLD for $10!"

A man sitting on the second row shouted, "Now let's get on with the collection!"

The auctioneer laid down his gavel. "I'm sorry, the auction is over."

"What about the paintings?"

"I am sorry. When I was called to conduct this auction, I was told of a secret stipulation in the will. I was not allowed to reveal that stipulation until this time. Only the painting of the son would be auctioned. Whoever bought that painting would inherit the entire estate, including the paintings. The man who took the son gets everything!"

God gave His son 2,000 years ago to die on the cross. Much like the auctioneer, His message today is: "The son, the son, who'll take the son?"

Because, you see, whoever takes the Son gets everything.

WHEREVER WE ARE By Sally I. Kennedy

You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy, at Your right hand there are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:11

The night was still. Not a breath of air stirring. Just a few chirpy insects awake.

A crescent moon played peekaboo behind milky clouds, pale and fluorescent. Lightning flashed in the distance; a rapid succession of heavenly electricity, making the murky skies seem mystical and magical.

“How incredibly, breathtakingly beautiful!”, I thought. “How dramatic. How magnificent!”.

I’d just gotten back from a long awaited trip. I experienced such majestic beauty in the mountains. It was amazing, God’s handiwork in such awesome ways.

When I arrived home, I was struck by how truly beautiful it was outside, right there behind my house that evening. Once again I was overwhelmed with the grandeur of God.

I’ve said it before, there is beauty ‘in our own back yards’. Wherever we are, there the Lord is. And in the presence of the Lord is fullness of joy, beauty, and peace.

If we can’t see anything around us, right where we are, God is still there. His presence is awesome and filled with glory.

Open my eyes, Lord, that I might see, your beauty and wonder all around me, wherever I am. In Jesus’ name!

Sally I. Kennedy, ©2008
Irish Thursdays Weekly Devotionals,

THE WAY OUT By Sally I. Kennedy

Enter through the narrow gate…wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it…small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. Matthew 7:13-14

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path. Psalm 119:105

The way in was a piece of cake. Go over the small bridge, follow one trail, then another where it forked off.

We sort of wandered and just kept going; it was interesting. Pretty soon we were at a place, on the mountain, we'd never come to before. Ooh, the waterfall! This was great.

Took awhile for me to even think about leaving. It was fun, it was exciting! But as I tired, and got thirsty, I was ready to get out of there. Shadows were longer. It began to feel as if a storm was gathering. I sure didn't want to get caught in a thunder and lightning downpour way out there.

Yup, sticky and sweaty, ready to get back to the parking lot to the car, grab a bottle of water. Hmm, was it this fork we took? No, didn't think so. Did not look familiar at all.

One turn, another turn. Oh gosh, where was that trail??! I was wishing we'd done a `Hansel and Gretel' thing, and strewn breadcrumbs on our way in. But then, the mountain jays and chipmunks would probably have made off with them by now.

Eventually, the path narrowed. Oh yes, there it was! That little bridge leading out. Still there.

Happy ending to story. It made me think about how easy it is to find my way into things (situations, relationships, etc), and sometime how not so easy to find my way out. I believe, the Lord is the answer to finding the Way out.

That is good news.


"Though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises again." This is what the Bible says.

Have you heard the phrase, "You cannot keep a good man down."

Now let's look at the practicality of this.

In his book, `Peak Performers,' Dr. Charles Garfield describes how the astronauts keep their spacecraft on course.

"On their flights between earth and the moon, it was said, the Apollo ships were off course much of the time. In each instance, the spacecraft would wander off its path and the crew would correct—wander of and correct, again and again. And do you know what? It didn't matter. What mattered were the results.

They got to the moon. They got home. They did it by having the discipline and knowledge to get themselves back on course. They followed not a perfect path, but a critical path."

Whether we're shooting for the moon, seeking to achieve a better personal or family life, or seeking to obey and serve God, whatever our goals, the principle is the same. There are always unpredictable and unexpected events that call for change and adjustment. Although the astronauts had to be precise in their calculations, they still allowed for mistakes and corrections. The person who doesn't allow for such adjustments will probably not reach his or her goals. As Charles Garfield explained, the "critical path" is the way to reach any target.

For the Christian our goal is to obey and serve God and to go on to maturity. We will stumble at times, make mistakes, fail, and hit many a bump in the road. When we fall, however, the important thing is the critical path—to get up, correct our course and go on. And as one author reminds us, "The bumps are what we climb on!"

This is why Grace is so important.

I like the bumper sticker that says: "Christians are not perfect, only forgiven!"

When Jesus Christ said to Thomas the doubter as he is more popularly known, Jesus said "I Am the Way, the Truth and the Life and no one goes to the Father except through Me."

Jesus was providing for us the critical path.

He knows that the journey to His Eternal Presence is not a smooth ride.

There will be bumps along the way.

Grace makes us see our own plank in our eyes rather than the splint in someone's eyes. Legalism and hypocritical self-righteousness sees the mistakes of others and blur the mirror so they cannot see themselves. There are many professing Christians who are so legalistic, cruel and condemning they cannot see their own sins.

And this is so far from the model that Christ Himself displayed.

Do not question any person's state of spirituality.

Never say, be gracious.

Exhibit a Christ-like character.

If for no other reason than this:
There will be three things which will surprise us when we get to heaven; one, to find many there that we did not expect to find there; another, to find some not there whom we had expected; a third, and perhaps the greatest wonder, will be to find ourselves there. Not because we have taken the perfect path but because we have taken the critical path.


One night a wife found her husband standing over their newborn baby's crib. Silently she watched him. As he stood looking down at the sleeping infant, she saw on his face a mixture of emotions: disbelief, doubt, delight, amazement, enchantment, skepticism.

Touched by this unusual display and the deep emotions it aroused, with eyes glistening she slipped her arms around her husband.

"A penny for your thoughts," she whispered in his ear.

"It's amazing!" he replied. "I just can't see how anybody can make a crib like that for only P450.00! (Made in China !)"

It's amazing to see how certain people cannot detach themselves from the business life they live even when they are alone with their family.

Last Saturday was no ordinary Saturday for me.

There was no speaking engagement for me on that day and that is very rare.

Weekends are the first to go in my calendar. Business companies would invite me to do out-of-town talks for their people and schools would invite me to do parenting or faculty development seminars and I enjoy doing it. But last Saturday got me doing something else. I had to do a "superman act." I had to stand as one of the primary sponsors in two weddings that were just two hours apart. And that's not the only
challenge I had. I had to show up in both wedding receptions notwithstanding the fact that one was in the Ortigas area and the other one in Ermita! Somehow God is merciful. Things turned out right. It was stressful but it was fun.

I did it not because I had to do it but because I wanted to. The parents of the newly wed couples are dear friends of mine. Both Romy and Tenny Menorca as well as Guillermo and Rebecca Go are very dear to me.

The two weddings featured a lot of contrasts. One was held in a Catholic church the other one Evangelical. One was heavy in ceremony while the other one was deep in Scriptures. The Menorca 's have wonderful sons (no daughters) while the Co's have wonderful daughters (no sons). One wedding motif required male sponsors to wear the traditional Barong while the other one was strictly coat and tie. You should know that by now, I have developed the wonderful skill of changing clothes inside my car on my way to different functions and occasions.

Now let me tell you what I saw common with the two weddings.

Both weddings were beautiful.

Both wedding receptions were grand and majestic.

You should have seen both the newly-wed couples, they look stunning.

You should have seen the parents, they all looked so proud and happy.

Both weddings packed a lot of joyful tears and merry laughter.

But the one most important common thing I see in both weddings is this: that the kids and their parents are close to each other and they love each other deeply.

Now this is the business person's greatest reward: to have a successful family and to be able to support the children and usher them not just down the aisle but down the path of having their own successful families as well.

So many business people I know are not blessed with this kind of success.

They rush down the aisles of career or business accomplishments and many of them actually achieved their goals only to turn around and see that the roads getting there have been littered with a lot of family casualties along the way. The most tragic moment comes to a person's life when that which one thinks would deliver the ultimate success leads to disappointment and defeat.

You know you're there when this haunting thought nags you: "Is this all there is to it?" But here is how to avoid them:

The warning signs are clear when you hear yourself saying, "But I'm doing this for the family!" You have to stop for a while and seriously ask yourself whether you are indeed doing it for the family or are you doing it for yourself?

Another warning sign is this. You begin to miss your kid's ball games, their recitals, their plays... their birthdays... and you're not interested in attending those corny parenting activities in school.

Now be careful! The "Red Alert Warning"... "Code Red"... comes when you begin to say, "I deserve some happiness of my own...." This is extremely dangerous. This is when stupid decisions are made and you begin to dig a hole that will only get deeper and deeper.

We always pay for the choices we make.

You can fail in your business and you can fail in your career but if you have a successful family then you are still successful.

Take care of your family. Make sure that they are your partners in what you do. Share with them your victories as well as your defeats; your joys as well as your regrets. Be a significant part of their lives and make them conscious of their spiritual walk as well. While I was sitting there listening to the priest and the pastor delivering their message they were both correct when they said, "Unless the Lord builds the house the laborers build in vain."

My last piece of advice is this. Perhaps this is the strongest piece. The best thing you can do for your kids is to love their mother.

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