True Desires

Me: That youngin’ has more energy than a hare on huntin’ day.

Prodigal: Well he is sitting now.

Me: Let me get my story in then.

This is from Wisdom from the Psalms

I remember thinking, when I first became a Christian, how wonderful prayer would be. All I would have to do was let God know what I wanted, and He promised that I would have it. I began searching my life for the true desires of my heart, and was surprised to find that they weren’t cars, money, or houses, but love, peace of mind, and happiness. The more I prayed, the more I became aware that the true desires of my heart were the desires of Jesus’ own heart. They had been there all along, but I had never recognized them before.

Prayer is not a way for us to make ourselves wealthy and prosperous. The Christian’s mind should be set on higher things. When we pray to the Lord, always remembering to say, “Thy will be done,” we will find the truth of Christ squarely centered in our lives.

Psalm 37:4

Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

Jennifer Van Allen

Commitment to Beauty

Me: You look like a postcard prodigal!

Prodigal: God’s beauty is amazing!

This is from the book Bold Love by Dr. Dan Allender & Dr. Tremper Longman III

A commitment to beauty–that is, to doing everything we can to birth good and destroy evil–is the heartbeat of biblical revenge. The person who does harm must pay for his sin, now and perhaps later. Without payment, arrogance—like a weed–will grow, and a disregard of God–like a thicket-will become thicker and more impenetrable. Punishment, in the form of legal consequences, church discipline, biblical rebuke, or supernatural discipline, is both a warning and an opportunity for repentance, as much for the believer as for the unbeliever.

Bearing the stripes of discipline will either increase arrogance (“I will not be broken”) or deepen humility (“I will not pursue death”). If repayment leads to repentance, the relationship can be restored and beauty is enhanced. If it leads to arrogance, greater crimes will undoubtedly be committed and more repayment will be required.

Given the state of a person’s hardness (measured in part by the crime), the payment may need to be very severe to give the best opportunity for hardness to be dissolved. The goal, nevertheless, remains restoration and a return to beauty.

James 2:13

For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment.

Jennifer Van Allen

Women Lovin’ Jesus

Prodigal: Keep every stone they throw at you. You’ve got castles to build.

Me: Amen.

This is a a short video devotion.

click here to watch the video

Proverbs 10:16

The wage of the righteous leads to life, the gain of the wicked to sin. (ESV)

Jennifer Van Allen


Me: Having fun playing!

Prodigal: Yes, we all need that time.

This is from Warren Wiersbe The Integrity Crisis:

Jesus made it clear that integrity involves the whole of the inner person: the heart, the mind, and the will. The person with integrity has a single heart. He doesn’t try to love God and the world at the same time….The person with integrity also has a single mind, a single outlook (“eye) that keeps life going in the right direction. After all, outlook helps to determine outcome; “a double-minded man is unstable in all his ways: (James 1:8)….

Jesus also said that the person with integrity has a single will; he seeks to serve but one master. Peter T. Forsythe was right when he said, “The first duty of every soul is to find not its freedom but its Master.” Once you find your Master, Jesus Christ, you will find your freedom; “therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed” (John 8:36). Nobody can successfully serve two masters. To attempt to do so is to become a fractional person, and a fractional person doesn’t have integrity. He is someone with a divided mind, and a divided will.

Proverbs 5:18

Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice with the wife of your youth.

Jennifer Van Allen

Trembling in Faith

Prodigal: I feel like something the cat dragged in.

Me: That long of day can only have one solution.

Prodigal: Please share.

Me: The following will help!

This is from the book Joy in Christ’s Presence by Charles Spurgeon

Beloved, may you catch a glimpse of Jesus now! Though it is only a glimpse, it will delight and comfort your soul. Perhaps you are waiting for Christ, desiring His company, and while you are turning this over in your mind you are asking, “Will He ever shine upon me? Will He ever speak loving words to me? Will He ever let me sit at His feet? Will He ever permit me to rest my head in His lap?” Come and try Him. Though you may shake like a leaf, come.

Sometimes they come best who come most tremblingly, for when the creature is lowest, then the Creator is highest; and when in our own esteem we are less than nothing, then Christ is fairer and lovelier in our eyes. One of the best ways to reach heaven is on our hands and knees. At any rate, there is no fear of falling when we are in that position.

Encourage one another and build each other up

1 Thessalonians 5:11

Jennifer Van Allen

Women Lovin’ Jesus

Prodigal: He’s missin’ a few buttons off his shirt.

Me: Bless his heart.

This is a short video devotion on Proverbs.

Click here to watch the video

Proverbs 10:15 The rich men’s wealth is his strong city: the destruction of the poor is their poverty.

Jennifer Van Allen


Me: I see you brought your friend.

Prodigal: Yes, he is a good friend.

Me: Y’all look closer than two fleas in a dog’s ear.

Prodigal: We are.

This is from the book When God Whispers Your Name by Max Lucado

Scarilege is to feel guilt for sins forgiven.

God forgets the past. Imitate him.

Greed I’ve often regretted. Generosity-never.

Never miss a chance to read a child a story.

Pursue forgiveness, not innocence.

Don’t ask God to do what you want. Ask God to do what is right.

Nails didn’t hold God to a cross. Love did.

You’ll give up on yourself before God will.

Know answered prayer when you see it, and don’t give up when you don’t.

Flattery is fancy dishonesty.

The right heart with the wrong creed is better than the right creed with the wrong heart.

We treat others as we perceive God is treating us.

Sometimes the most godly thing we can do is take a day off.

Faith in the future begets power in the present.

No one is useless to God. No one.

Conflict is inevitable, but combat is optional.

You will never forgive anyone more than God has already forgiven you.

Succeed in what matters.

You’ll regret opening your mouth. You’ll rarely regret keeping it shut.

To see sin without grace is despair. To see grace without sin is arrogance. To see them in tandem is conversion.

God doesn’t keep a clock.

Never underestimate a gesture of affection.

When Jesus went home, he left the front door open.

As soon as you can, pay your debts.

As long as you can, give the benefit of the doubt.

As much as you can, give thanks. He’s already given us more than we deserve.

Romans 12:13

Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.

Jennifer Van Allen

I Am In Training

Me; Are you safe with your back turned like that?

Prodigal: I am protected!

Me: Praise God!

I Am In Training 

The title may be training, but we are still talking about being in a trial.  The third step in dealing with trails is that we are being trained in them, if we remain obedient. 

Psalm 94 is scripture that is dealing with people who are in a calamity.  Most scholars believe that David is the author and was talking about many of problematic situations that happened in his lifetime.  Almost in the middle of this 23 verse Psalm we find the verse that is talking about teaching. 

There is an explanation of some of the heart reaching experiences that are happening around them and then a pause that goes on about teaching. 

Psalm 94:9-12 

He that planted the ear, shall he not hear?  he that formed the eye, shall he not see?  He that chastiseth the heathen, shall not he correct? He that teacheth man knowledge, shall not he know?  The Lord knoweth the thoughts of man, that they are vanity.  Blessed is the man who thou chastenest, O Lord, and teachest him out of thy law; 

When we exam this all together there is relationship between, trials, training and blessing.  One of the ways to be obedient in a trail and obtain a blessing is to acknowledge God is trying to train you. 

Seeking the Lord in praying is the first step in accepting training.  Ask questions like: 

“What are you trying to train me in?” 

“What steps of obedience do I need to take to help the training?” 

“What has already been part of my training?” 

“Show me what is training from you and what is the enemy trying to stop the training?” 

We are often arrogant in our lives until a trial comes.  The trail tends to humble us, we can then see how much we can really grow in an area. 

Often, we think I know how to pray, worship, read my bible, serve and love.  Sometime the trails are taking our skills and training them to another level.  Sometimes the skills we have are not done consistently.   

I learned some of the following skills set in trails.  I learned consistent prayer, worship, praise, serving and love others.  The prolonged trail forced me to learn how to use these daily in order to be obedient to the Father. 

As we are struggling in a trial, if we think of it as God’s Boot Camp for training and learning it may help with our obedience.  Just as a real boot camp has exercise that are performed to increase muscle and endurance.  The Lord’s boot camp may be trying to increase your spiritual muscle and endurance. 

Lord, Help us with training during our trials.  Speak to our spirit’s about how this training will glorify you.  Lord give us endurance during training and let us not give up when we feel our strength is being tested. 

Jennifer Van Allen

Women Lovin’ Jesus

Prodigal: These are dandy!

Me: Yes, beautiful to see.

This is a short video devotion on Proverbs.

click here to watch the video

Proverbs 10:14 Wise men lay up knowledge: but the mouth of the foolish is near destruction. (KJV)

Jennifer Van Allen

What Are You Afraid Of?

Me: Your friends have me shaken in my boots!

Prodigal: You don’t have to be afraid.

This comes from the book The Vision of His Glory by Anne Graham Lotz

What are you afraid of? If you have not suffered “because of the Word of God and the testimony of Jesus,” is it because your fears have kept you silent? Have your fears been the bushel under which you have hidden your light? Let you light shine! John did. Think of the vision of His glory John would have missed had he played it safe!

Instead, John endured with patience not only his suffering but also his solitude.

But as for me, I will always have hope

Psalm 71:14

Jennifer Van Allen