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Archive for the ‘Following Jesus’ Category

Posted on: October 8th, 2015 by Laurie Coombs
Messy Middle

“How’s the adoption?” A friend asked excitedly as I walked into church one Sunday. I desperately wanted to tell her that we were moving forward without a hitch and that we had everything ready and that we would soon be traveling to bring our children home, but I couldn’t. Instead, I reluctantly spoke words that broke my heart. “We’ve hit another roadblock,” I said, before mustering enough faith to add, “but we’ve been here before.” I expected to see sorrow in my friend’s eyes at my response, but she simply said, with complete and total assurance, “Yep, and you know how to get through them,” before she quickly hightailed her way to service. I was a bit stunned to be honest at her quick reaction to my heartfelt confession, but I couldn’t help but smile. She’s right, I thought. I do know how to get through them! God was reminding…

Posted on: September 22nd, 2015 by Laurie Coombs
NIV Bible for Women

I received an email several months back from an editor asking if I’d consider contributing to the new devotional Bible by Zondervan called NIV Bible for Women: Fresh Insights for Thriving in Today’s World. There were apparently a few contributors who dropped out at the last minute, and this poor editor had only a few days to pull the whole thing together. It was Saturday. The project was going to print on Monday. And God had brought her to me (and I’m sure a few others). “I can do it!” I told her with excitement, as I thought about how God had done it again. He’d provided yet another opportunity to get my message out there, and I was thankful––even though this project had effectively hijacked my weekend. I was asked to write a devotion on Revelation 4:8, focusing on the fact that God is still on His throne despite all the pain we see…

Posted on: September 3rd, 2015 by Laurie Coombs
God's Love Demanded He Do Something

The following is an excerpt of my new book, Letters from My Father’s Murderer.  I spent most of the night in prayer, asking Jesus for grace. I desperately needed His grace to trust and follow Him where He was leading. I prayed for Him to grow my faith. To allow me to see as I ought. And as Dr. Graham’s words came to mind once again—about how Jesus loved and prayed for His enemies, even as He hung on that cross—I thought, what is Jesus really asking me to do, anyway? Then it hit me. He was simply asking me to give that which I had already received. That night, I began to see and understand the gospel more fully. I began to see that, prior to coming to faith in Jesus, I was in fact an enemy of God. Yet while I was still far from God, He loved…

Posted on: August 18th, 2015 by Laurie Coombs
There but for the grace of God...

“Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven…” – Luke 6:37 A 16th century English church Reformer named John Bradford allegedly said, “There, but for the grace of God, goes John Bradford,” as he watched executioners lead his fellow prisoners to their deaths. Bradford, who had been imprisoned in the Tower of London for his Protestant faith by Queen Mary I of England, was later burned at the stake, dying a martyr’s death. It is said that, “Before the fire was lit, [Bradford] begged forgiveness of any he had wronged, and offered forgiveness to those who had wronged him. He subsequently turned to his fellow and said, ‘Be of good comfort brother; for we shall have a merry supper with the Lord this night!’” (Wikipedia). What an amazing man of God! Forgiveness was the last sentiment…

Posted on: August 5th, 2015 by Laurie Coombs
Waiting

The following is an excerpt taken from chapter 12 of Letters from My Father’s Murderer: A Journey of Forgiveness. While We Wait I trust God even though He doesn’t usually operate on my timeline or do things the way I’d like Him to. I wish I could say that I began trusting God like this the moment I gave my life to Christ, but I didn’t. Trust came with time as I saw God work in my life. As I witnessed God’s hand begin to work all things for good in my life, I came to believe that God does, in fact, know what He’s doing. So when things aren’t going my way, I now trust that God must have a better plan—a better way. I think that’s why I decided not to send that letter. I figured God knew something I didn’t, and I was pretty sure that God’s…

Posted on: July 29th, 2015 by Laurie Coombs
Do It Scared

The following is an excerpt taken from chapter 4 of Letters from My Father’s Murderer: A Journey of Forgiveness. Do It Scared One of my favorite phrases in the Bible is “but God.” I have it posted beside my bed, and every so often my girls ask me why I have those two little words there. I tell them, “All through the Bible bad things happen—people sin or something goes wrong—but over and over two words make it all okay: ‘but God.’” You see, no matter what happens in life, no matter how bad things seem to be, God is still the constant. He is still working all things for good. The psalmist wrote, “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (Ps. 73:26, emphasis mine). Joseph echoed this sentiment when he said, “As for you, you meant evil against…

Posted on: July 16th, 2015 by Laurie Coombs 3 Comments

I’d like to welcome Nan Jones to the blog today! Nan and I met last summer at the Christian Communicators Conference in North Carolina, and let me tell you, she is a firecracker for Jesus! I just love Nan and her heart for ministry. She and I, though COMPLETE strangers when we arrived, had the privilege of rooming together during the conference. We spent close to a week in the same room, along with two other amazing ladies, so needless to say, we got to know one another real well which was a delight! Her book, Perils of a Pastor’s Wife, has just released, and so I wanted to take a moment to introduce you all to her. I pray you are blessed! If God be For Me, Who Can be Against Me? Written by Nan Jones 
I tossed and turned; restlessness governed my sleep. All of my dreams seemed…

Posted on: July 8th, 2015 by Laurie Coombs
God has not left us to sit in our pain

I didn’t want to revisit my past, but I knew I needed to. I had already seen God move mightily on my behalf in the short time since giving my life to Christ, but I knew He wasn’t finished yet. Healing begins the moment we allow Jesus complete access to the darkness contained within our souls. Darkness must flee in the presence of light, in the presence of Jesus, but light cannot go where it is not permitted. Doors must be opened for light’s rays to touch our darkest dark. And at this point, I was flinging doors open left and right, begging, Come, Lord Jesus, come. Soon, I heard God’s gentle whisper––“It’s time to forgive.” I knew what God was calling me to. I knew I was being called to forgive Anthony, the man who murdered my dad. But quite honestly, I thought I had already done that. Yet…

Posted on: July 1st, 2015 by Laurie Coombs
Destroy save

I know some of you are familiar with my story, but some of you newer readers aren’t. And so with the release of my new book, Letters from My Father’s Murderer: A Journey of Forgiveness, I thought it would be a good idea to write a few articles to fill you in. I pray you are blessed. I had always thought the world was a wonderful place, full of beauty and love and light. Growing up, the life I imagined for myself looked more like a fairytale than I care to admit. I had plans for my life, big plans. But just as I was coming into my own, just as I was about to seize all life has to offer, my world unraveled when confronted by an evil I never imagined possible. My dad, who I love more than I can ever say, was murdered, and with that loss, all…

Posted on: June 27th, 2015 by Laurie Coombs 1 Comment
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Hi friends! Today’s the day Letters from My Father’s Murderer is released! I must say, it’s a bit surreal. This project has been in the works for three and a half years, and it’s finally out for the world to see! If you haven’t ordered a copy yet, you can grab it from Amazon or Barnes & Noble or wherever else you like to buy books. It’s available on Kindle and Nook as well, by the way (but not iBooks––whah, whah). If you’re still not convinced enough to pick up a copy, perhaps hearing what others are saying (outside of my friends and family) will give you the nudge you need: “Truthfully, I could not put the book down.” – Dan “Powerful! …This is a must read.” – Page “Been reading every spare minute…. I honestly had a hard time putting it down.” – Patty “Cannot put the book down! I started it last…