HOW Can You Have Thankful Heart At A Time Like THIS?

💔A Thankful Heart At a Time Like This??!

How sweet, how wonderful —  to hear these beautiful words:Life is precious!” from a loved one recently💕Indeed! 

This is an important and touching reminder for all of us because it’s essential to look at what we engage ourselves in, as well as its impact on life: our time spent. It’s important to consider this ongoing, not just when the year is “new,” during the month of January!

I could work all day and call it “life”  (and often have), or I could “play” all day and feel overwhelmingly “behind” in all I think I must do (as I often believed) and feeling life was diminished, not made better by my time away. Can you relate?

These encouraging words come at an interesting moment in time, during increasingly uncertain days. Upheaval, unwarranted hatred and turmoil are erupting everywhere have become a global epidemic.

I’m thankful we really can look beyond all the dark contentiousness swirling about to see what is right and true. Like a single candle glowing silently in the dark, this gives all with eyes to see and hearts to gladly receive needed HOPE.

Through disappointments, pain, struggle and chaos we always have Hope. Peace is found there. “and hope does not disappoint.” ~ Romans 5:5 [NASB]

Life IS precious!

📖In journaling the Word today, my verse was Psalm 138:2-3. I love the Scripture summary: A Thankful Heart” [CSB], which said it so well. It is where I am right now… 

“Thank you! Everything in me says “Thank you!” Psalm 138:1a [MSG]

I am thankful for all. I’m thankful for all His blessings and unlimited answered prayers ongoing — SO many answered! And so many answered in AMAZING ways♥️ So I say

“I kneel in worship facing your holy temple
    and say it again: “Thank you!”
Thank you for your love,
    thank you for your faithfulness;
Most holy is your name,
    most holy is your Word.
The moment I called out, you stepped in;
    you made my life large with strength.” 

~ Psalm 138: 2-3 [MSG]

AMEN. Indeed He did! He does! He will! He is!

Thank you, Father! I’m sharing this today to proclaim your Holy Name, to give thanks for all, and to share this for those who need a word of encouragement♥️

MORE VERSIONS of this Scripture:

“I will bow down toward your holy temple
and give thanks to your name
for your constant love and truth.
You have exalted your name
and your promise above everything else.

On the day I called, you answered me;
you increased strength within me.”

~ Psalm 138:2-3 [Christian Standard Bible]


“I bow before your holy Temple as I worship.
    I praise your name for your unfailing love and faithfulness;
for your promises are backed
    by all the honor of your name.

As soon as I pray, you answer me;
    you encourage me by giving me strength.”

~ Psalm 138:2-3 [New Living Translation]


“I will bow down [in worship] toward Your holy temple
And give thanks to Your name for Your lovingkindness and Your truth;
For You have magnified Your word together with Your name.

On the day I called, You answered me;
And You made me bold and confident with [renewed] strength in my life.”

~ Psalm 138:2-3 [Amplified Bible]


“I will bow down toward Your holy temple
and give thanks to Your name
for Your constant love and truth.
You have exalted Your name
and Your promise above everything else.

On the day I called, You answered me;
You increased strength within me.” 

~ Psalm 138:2-3 [Holman Christian Standard Bible]


“Thank you! Everything in me says “Thank you!”
    Angels listen as I sing my thanks.

I kneel in worship facing your holy temple

and say it again: “Thank you!

Thank you for your love,

thank you for your faithfulness;

Most holy is your name,

most holy is your Word.

The moment I called out, you stepped in;

you made my life large with strength.” 

~ Psalm 138:1-3 [The Message]

22 years ago, on the Saturday following 9-11…

This was the week September 11th was remembered by many. It really stirs the heart and memories looking back, doesn’t it? I’m sure you have a lot of memories packed-away about this infamous day. We’ll never forget, will we? 

Some precious memories of the days that followed came to mind this week, as I remembered garden friends gathering in our Herbal Treasures Garden for a previously-scheduled event turned prayer gathering right in the middle of the garden.


A beautiful glow was cast on our Herbal Treasures of Hickory Hollow Garden by the golden September sunshine. Peace and calm filled our lovely garden. It was a lively place as butterflies flitted about, the bees were buzzily busy doing their thing as birds joyously sang their little sweet hearts out.

Like a last-minute hug before leaving for a long time, life felt secure and assured that all was well as we launched into the day. This morning was so especially gorgeous, it belied the potential evil lurking in the corners of the day. Looking back, it seemed impossible this serene day could take the turn it did in mere hours on 9-11.

22 years ago, on the Saturday afternoon following 9-11, a group of women gathered in our Herbal Treasures of Hickory Hollow Garden. It was September 15th. As the last big event of the 2001 gardening season, it was the grand finale.

This garden gathering had been planned months before. The program offered sweet fellowship time and sharing about our family’s visit to the Chelsea Flower Show — the ultimate garden party! Special refreshments included serving Sticky Toffee Pudding, a delight we discovered on our trip (long before becoming an internet sensation).

The Infamous Day Life Changed Forever

On 9-11 (Tuesday) life changed forever for the United States, and dare I say also the world. The life-altering events of that day impacted every aspect of life, immediately including regular schedules, special plans and everyday life as we knew it.

By Wednesday, I knew I had to decide whether to go forward with our planned event or not. After prayerful consideration, we determined we must continue with our plans. Press on we did!

The women gathered in quiet anticipation of needed time with others in a loving safe space — our garden. These are women of faith. Standing together in the center of the garden, we prayed deeply that day. We prayed over the horrific events unleashing unexpected destruction that week.

There were so many needs to cover with prayer, that it was almost difficult to know where to begin. We prayed for our country, leaders, and all who were touched by the unfolding horrors: affected families… destroyed businesses… lost lives… bystanders harmed, and the cities and areas affected. The list grew on!

He Holds The Whole World In His Hands

That day, each sweet lady left her 9-11 related concerns at Jesus’ feet right there in the garden. While we had difficulty finding all the words, He was there with us, as well (as with everyone calling out to Him everywhere). He is among us and He hears us, sees us, and knows us.

Jesus was with all of us wherever we were on the fateful day of 9-11. Before the dark events caused such a tragic outcome and in the aftermath, He was present. He continues to stay close to all of us today.

Jesus heard all the cries, saw our tears, witnessed the pain and unimaginable desecration. He brought us together with one another to get through the excruciating pain and dark uncertain days that followed. We found we were better together.

People were seeking answers. They needed assurances. They wanted something they could hold onto that was secure in this world gone mad. The truth is, we always are looking for these things. In the topsy-turvy days following 9-11, this quest spread like wildfire!

We Always Have Hope, Even Amidst the Ashes

There are many things we can count on:

  • Life is always uncertain.
  • Evil exists in the world.
  • Our pain and struggles are real.
  • Even on dark days, we are never alone.
  • Every day of our lives, Jesus is with us.
  • God loves all deeply (even bad guys).
  • He keeps His promises.
  • God — NEVER man — is “in charge.”
  • Evil will be punished.
  • Hope is found in Him, for all our needs.
  • God hears our prayers and knows us.
  • God answers our prayers in His time.
  • His Will, His Plan supersedes man’s.
  • God uses even bad things for His good.
  • Man will NOT have “the last word.”

The truth is: even in our darkest days, we are never alone. God is with us. Jesus stands by us and will go forward with us as we press on through it all.

In Deuteronomy 31:6, Scripture tells us:

“Be strong. Take courage. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t give them a second thought because God, your God, is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you.” (MSG)

“Be strong and courageous; don’t be terrified or afraid of them. For the LORD your God is the one who will go with you; he will not leave you or abandon you.” (CSB)

“Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or in dread of them, for the LORD your God is the One who is going with you. He will not desert you or abandon you.” (ASB)

“So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the LORD your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” (NLT)

MORE ABOUT Herbal Treasures of Hickory Hollow

At Christmastime…

Christmastime Brings All Hearts Home

If even for just a moment, Christmastime brings all hearts home, pausing to remember:

  • happy times
  • happier times
  • what once was
  • what life was like, before…
  • ________ (you fill in the blank)

The memories may be heart-warming, affirming joyful times with family, friends, and loved ones.

Or the memories may rekindle angst and hurt felt during those times (or still feel, thinking back).

You may be surprised when those once-happy sweet, special moments suddenly turn into a stinging source of pain, piercing your heart with every remembrance. 

Take heart — all of these reactions, feelings, and emotions are normal! We are human. This is how we roll! 

Believers and unbelievers alike, Christmastime brings all hearts home, if even for just a moment:

  • it gives us that moment to pause amidst the blowout holiday sales and heavy party schedule or the darkness of long, lonely days.
  • during this small space of time between the old and new years, it gives us a moment to reflect upon life, this year, the way things are, and what we hope will be.

♥️Christmastime brings believers and unbelievers alike:

  • Comfort, if there is pain.
  • Peace, the assurance we are never alone.
  • Joy, knowing we are always loved (unconditionally), more than we could ever imagine. 
  • Hope, knowing God has a plan to prosper each of us. With Him all things are possible! 

We are securely held in His love with a bright future if we accept His gracious invitation to receive the greatest gift freely given to all:

“For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son so that anyone who believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. God did not send his Son into the world to condemn it, but to save it.” ~ John 3:16-17 [The Living Bible]

He is the way, the truth, and the light to help you through your darkest days. He will stand with you as you celebrate your greatest joys! 

Over the last 7 years, I have created resources to help you and those you care about, wherever you are in your life at this moment:

❤️‍Broken2Breakthrough – You CAN Transform Your Life One Relationship at a Time!

♥️Resources for REAL Life:

Building Healthy Relationships and Finding Forgiveness:

Let’s KICK those Life-wrecking Lies to the Curb (we all have them!) and all have a better New Year, please??

NEW: Kick Life-Wrecking Lies to the Curb! Letting Go of the Lies Keeping You From Living with Heart and Soul:

Additional favorite versions of John 3:16-17 and John 3:16-18

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” ~ John 3:16-17 [NIV]

“This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person’s failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him.” ~ John 3:16-18 [The Message]

#BecauseRelationshipsMatter #RelationshipsMatter #Relationships #KickLies #KickLiesToTheCurb #MindsetReset #Broken2Breakthrough

Forgiveness is Possible

? I’m so pleased to share with you that a feature I wrote, entitled “Forgiveness is Possible,” is published in the beautiful Sweet To The Soul FAITH Magazine Spring 2022 “Grace” issue!

Since publishing Restoring the Broken Places in an Unforgiving World, my goal and heart mission is sharing the important message of forgiveness and grace.

In all I write, speak and do — all forms of media, all the time — I endeavor to offer encouragement to everyone for finding forgiveness, clarity for getting to grace, and assuring all that forgiveness is possible. That’s why I am thrilled to have my article “Forgiveness is Possible” published in Sweet To The Soul FAITH Magazine’s Grace issue!

This issue of Sweet To The Soul FAITH is about God’s glorious grace… containing 140 full-color pages of faith-based inspiration, including articles, devotionals, Scripture reading lists, recipes, life management, Bible Art Journaling, creative resources and more!

Becky Cortino Grace Article
Forgiveness is Possible article by author Becky Cortino is featured in the GRACE issue of Sweet to the Soul Ministry FAITH Magazine, Spring 2022 edition.

Throughout this issue, tender hearts share about real-life experiences and struggles. Struggles to forgive others and even harder sometimes, to forgive ourselves… also stories of supernatural hope found in the most difficult of times, hope which only God can supply.

Articles include:

• Spiritual Complacency and How to Renew Your Focus

• Finding Freedom from Your Past

• Hanging on to Threadbare Hope

• When Life Seems Hopeless 

• How to Share Your Faith Story

• Praying for an Open Door

• Gospel Foundations for Your Finances

• Letting Go of Clutter for Good

• How to Bullet Journal

• So much more!

This is one of the most beautiful magazines of its type I’ve seen. The content is truly inspirational. Much food for thought, study and encouragement is reliably found between the covers of this quarterly magazine!

? ? ? ☕️ MORE: Information and To Purchase:

Sweet To The Soul FAITH Magazine “Grace” Issue

The Most Powerful Tool I Use Daily

The Most Powerful Tool I Use Daily (In Addition to Prayer and Reading the Bible)

Setting goals and making plans is exciting! For many, the mere thought of simply beginning in the moment to transform life is a beautiful dream sure to be realized. Our dream destination may take us to where we’d rather be, feel led to be, or know is the next right place to be. However it calls to us, the dream is compelling enough to get us fired up for the work ahead.

When we’re all in, our dedication to purpose and hard work in achieving established goals is rewarding. Initially, we may not grow weary with the required heavy lifting. The dream promises a bright future and new adventure. It energizes us, because we are 110% sold out on achieving it!

Embarking on a new endeavor or heading in a new life direction can be daunting. We need clarity to determine what we hope to accomplish. What is the result we seek? What is the expected outcome?

We need to be sure of what is be required to assure our success. Developing astrategic, workable plan, with a realistic timeline and system of  checkpoints helps to put us on the right course.

But wait… there’s more!

I used to create business plans for clients as a professional consultant. I know the mechanics of building a plan, as well as the pitfalls of carrying it out. There really is much more to planning than all this logical, step-by-step, work-the-system approach. I went through the additional steps with my clients, and they always thanked me for it, because they were ready to walk out of my office and get to work on their new project.

The something more is digging in deeply and really soul-searching about your plans, dreams, hopes and fears before you take the first step toward your goal. I do mean before you begin to work that brand new shiny plan. 

You cannot truly be 110% in, if you don’t. If you don’t deeply consider it all, you’re simply sold on the dream itself, not all that comes with it, including the inevitable life changes. It’s the visual aspect of it that is drawing you in, not the reality it brings.

For my clients, I had a formatting that walked them through the steps, bringing them to the other side, so they could contemplate all of this deep stuff on their own. I remember helping one client who wanted to establish a new service business who, after presenting their plan, determined not to proceed (due to perceived risks). Please know I was (still am) in the business of encouragement and supporting viable efforts.

In my personal and business projects, I have found a solution that turns out to be the most powerful tool I use daily, in addition to prayer and reading the Bible. This is not a wild claim — I can prove it! I want to share it with you, but first a story to illustrate how powerful this tool can be…

In November, 2019, I registered for a conference I wanted to attend for years. The founder had personally invited me in 2014. Unfortunately for me, her invitation came after I had already attended 3 conferences that year. I had to turn her down, knowing I wasn’t in a situation to effectively apply what I would learn there. Five years later, I knew it was my time to attend.

I’m very particular about conference-going. Attending conferences for me is entirely purpose-driven. Prior to any conference, I establish goals to achieve while there, and specific outcomes in attending. Before committing to a schedule or track, I plan how to accomplish them within the confines of the event. 

At all conferences, I take copious notes and work through what I learn at each afterward, before planning to attend another. In 2014, each conference I attended was on an entirely different subject, so I justified spending the resources. Packing in so much over a few months, made me feel like conference attending was again becoming an unwanted career, after too many years on the road and countless air miles with a heavy convention/meeting schedule coast-to-coast and internationally during my marketing days. 

In 2019, the conference website featured a list of 18 keywords on the homepage. This intrigued me, because they represented what the conference was about and what was offered. I wondered how I could use them?

I decided these words would be an excellent source of preparation for the conference. I believed the most effective use of them (for me) was to select one (or two related words) each week, fully considering them and what they meant to me in my endeavors. 

My goal was two-fold: 

  1. To be fully prepared as an active participant at the conference. 
  2. To get the most out of the conference, making best use of the time and my resources.

To accomplish these goals, I scheduled the list of  keywords over the course of the 17 weeks prior to the conference. I journaled weekly on the selected word(s) of the week:

  • I wrote about what the word meant to me. 
  • I prayed about it for me (and others), as I worked toward getting ready for the gathering. 
  • I prayed for God’s guidance and direction in it all, and for His blessing. 

After journalling and prayer over the chosen word, in preparation for the conference:

  • I laid out specific steps needed to take that week.
  • I knew planning my work and working that plan, I would be ready.

When the time arrived for our conference I was indeed 110% ready, with all materials I needed in a nice, neat package. I don’t think I’ve ever felt more ready to attend a conference! 

Unfortunately for all of us, COVID-19 also arrived and was looming, threatening to shut everything down. Which (as you well know) happened. It was crushing, but I held on to the promise of the conference being rescheduled. Knowing it was my time to attend, I waited.

The conference was rescheduled later in the year. A month prior to the event, I had to cancel,  due to the health concerns my family had, with potential risks posed by COVID. I honored their request, but was profoundly heartbroken to not attend. 

God’s faithfulness is so great! While I felt very much led to attend that conference, and in the end couldn’t due to circumstances beyond my control, He brought me through to the other side of my broken heartedness of missing-out on what I wanted, and He blessed me with what I most needed.

We don’t see what He sees, nor could ever know all God knows. In fact, we only see such a small part, our walking with Him in faith is the only way to get through. (2 Corinthians 5:7) How humbling to hear Him say to my heart one fine spring day in 2021, “See how I am answering your prayers!” Indeed I did, and I am blessed!

Journalling has been a big part of my life. As you can see keeping a journal — even a short-term special topic or subject journal — serves well in providing clarity and guidance. 

Journalling The Word can help us through challenging times. Keeping a journal can help us explore complex issues and make valuable personal discoveries so we can move forward with greater clarity. My 9th book, ThGrace Daily Challenge Journal, is designed to help readers and writers explore what the Bible says about grace and finding forgiveness, as they journal The Word. 

Grace Daily Journal

The Grace Daily Challenge Journal is designed to create a personally-enriching, meaningful journalling experience with:

  • 1,020 Bible verses organized according to topic as journalling The Word prompts. 
  • Chapter introductions set focus through topical discussion related to forgiveness.
  • Content is presented to encourage journalling based on personal interest and study preference.
  • Journalling tips are included, to make the most of the journalling experience.

MORE About : The Grace Daily Challenge Journal (Paperback and eBook)

6 Tips for Creating an Enriching Personal Retreat at Home

Plan a Personal Retreat

For many of us the thought of being able to get away for a retreat sounds enticing, but seems impossible. Amidst the crush of every day crowded with unplanned challenges and schedule pressures, we find ourselves running on empty (or on a dangerously low reserve) of energy for much-needed soul care. 

Unfortunately when we need it most, resources and a margin of time often don’t permit us to attend a retreat. Conferences and fellowshipping (online and in real life) are wonderful, but when schedule allows, personal budgets don’t always stretch to cover registration, travel and hotel stays.    

Sometimes we realize the need for refreshment and a space for time away will help us regain focus, restore energy. Rather than not addressing our own personal soul care because it seems impossible in this season…

Here are 6 tips for creating an enriching personal retreat at home:

  1. PREPARE: Pray for refreshment to come, God’s direction in planning the right setting and topic to explore in your time with Him.
  2. PURPOSE: Determine the needs you want to address. Find a book, sermon series, Bible verse, devotional that speaks to your heart.
  3. PLAN: Select a day, blocking-out a time period of 2-3 hours (if possible). As needed, include childcare or necessary adult care. 
  4. SETTING: Choose an appealing environment conducive for your hoped-for  enrichment.
  5. IMMERSE: Once in retreat mode, turn off all notifications, put a “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door — and settle in!
  6. EMERGE: After your retreat, may you be blessed with greater clarity, refreshment, renewed hope, defined purpose and clear direction. 

Here are 6 ideas to encourage refreshment and clarity in your personal retreat:

  • Deep-dive mini-study of a topic, sermon series or a Bible Study. 
  • Select a key Bible verse (or verses), and during your time:
  1. Journal about it (or them), as extensively as your heart wants to roam.
  2. Bible Journal, as a visually creative activity to delve into the topic.
  3. Bullet Journal your study, for note taking, recoding discoveries.  
  4. Create Bible verse, prayer or personal reflection cards.

RECOMMENDED RESOURCE: As a ready resource of Bible verses organized by topic, including journalling tips and ideas we recommend The Grace Daily Journal:

The Grace Daily Journal

#RelationshipsMatter #ChristianLifestyle #Encouragement #SoulCare #SelfCare #PersonalCare #Forgiveness #RestoringTheBrokenPlaces #GraceDaily #PlanningARetreat #PersonalRetreat #PersonalGetaway #LivingALifeOfJoy Even in the face of adversity #BattlingBurnout

ABOUT: Becky Cortino – Encourager, Author, Presenter, YouTuber and Tightrope Walker

Becky Cortino International Speaker and Author

Becky Cortino is an author, inspirational speaker and tightrope walker. She has authored 9 books and is a longtime featured presenter.
 Her new book (number 8), RESTORING THE BROKEN PLACES IN AN UNFORGIVING WORLD, is about Forgiveness. 

A multi-platform professional writer throughout her career creating marketing/sales and promotional content for clients commercially, in addition to promoting causes and information campaigns. Her tradition of multiple-platform communication continues today.

Becky has written for, her words have been published and broadcast over every form of media. Her first 7 books are based on ministries she and her family participated in for over 20 years. 

Resulting from her writing and book publishing efforts, public speaking and presentation opportunities domestically and internationally developed.  Audiences range from small events, to business community member audiences (up to 500 in attendance).

A longtime presenter featuring a series of edutraining programs, Becky also presented special track training workshops at an international conference. She recently offered a special program to a delighted audience in southeastern Europe.

Becky is a featured collaborator in 2 published books on the subjects of Injecting Healing Humor in Healthcare, and Herbs, to benefit causes and nonprofits (on the national/global platform).

She wrote a piece on work that looks like play and hearts touched by the hospital humor ministry she and her family served in for nearly 14 years. It was featured in What’s Right in Healthcare, a special edition created to inspire those in the front lines of healthcare. This book was published in 2007.

Herb Society of America’s Essential Guide to Growing and Cooking with Herbs, benefitting The National Herb Garden (now in 3rd reprint and available in Kindle eBook Edition), was published in 2007. Becky’s contribution was an offshoot of her Herbal Treasures Of Hickory Hollow women’s ministry, and her homeschooling family’s garden adventure.

Becky collaborated on a third book for women in business: Behind Her Brand, Entrepreneur Edition, Volume 5 in 2016. Her contribution was based on her marketing and public relations consultancy business and digital marketing experience.

Since 1999, Becky has published several books, countless eBooks and many websites, creating content ongoing – ‘blogging’ before there were blogs! (Blogging officially beginning in 2004, when suitable platforms were available.)

She has presented numerous training programs, coached and helped area churches, by personally encouraging the Christian community to establish Christian Creative Arts Ministry as a regular activity and special event, enhancing outreach and mission trip efforts, to impact lives.

To support this important outreach work, Becky authored 2 in-depth books on the topic of establishing Christian Creative Arts Ministry. In addition to her books to further prepare and equip these ministries, she created digital media resources. Becky created and developed 15 online multi-media training courses. She began offering online training and resources in 2002.

A media maker with professional experience in all forms of media including New, Social and Traditional. Becky began podcasting in 2008, hosting several internet BlogTalk Radio Shows collaboratively and on her own. Since 2008, she created a branded series of videos for her books on her YouTube channels featuring related original niche content.

In February 2020, speaker and author Becky Cortino established LivRad, a speaking and writing ministry charged with the mission of “Encouraging Words for Hurting People.”

MORE ABOUT:  Becky Cortino 

Becky Cortino Books + Media (Links):
AMAZON Author: Becky Cortino Books + Media on AMAZON

Becky’s Newest Book About Forgiveness: Restoring the Broken Places 

JOIN ME??? 🌝Tales From The Tightrope!

Becky Cortino Social Links:

Becky Cortino Facebook Page
@BeckyCortino on Twitter
Becky Cortino on LinkedIn
Becky Cortino on Pinterest
Becky Cortino on Instagram
Becky Cortino Channel (YouTube)

#BlueRidgeChristianAuthor #SheSpeaks #SpeakUp #ChristianCommunicator

More About: Becky Cortino Books and Presentations

PLEASE NOTE: In light of the rapidly-changing COVID-19 situation and varying mandates, Becky Cortino Speaking Engagement Information, including Presentation Topics, and Booking Details are not available.

Friend, do you have a calling you feel is tugging on your heart to answer? Click here for some encouragement especially for you!

More About: RESTORING THE BROKEN PLACES IN AN UNFORGIVING WORLD, Becky’s book about forgiveness

In These Uncertain Days

In these uncertain days, as tumultuous turns of unfathomable events stir us to feel restless in staying where we are and yet, unsure where we should go… It’s difficult to watch catastrophes unfold, feeling helpless as we stand by. Deciding the next right thing is difficult amidst the din of chaos…

The good news is we are never hopeless, for the one true God is always with us and He will lead the way! In fact, He doesn’t want His children (that’s you and me) to worry! Can you imagine?! He loves us all so much, He wants us to continue living our lives, resting in Him when things get crazy and the going is tough, and know He’ll handle it. .

In fact, He’ll make it better beyond our belief, using the world’s bad for His good. He is able to bring about remarkable  transformations, unimaginable blessings, showering His children with His gracious goodness.

“So don’t be anxious about tomorrow. God will take care of your tomorrow too. Live one day at a time.” (Matthew 6:34 TLB)

“So do not worry about tomorrow; it will have enough worries of its own. There is no need to add to the troubles each day brings.” (Matthew 6:34 GNT)

“Do not worry about tomorrow. Tomorrow will have its own worries. The troubles we have in a day are enough for one day.” (Matthew 6:34 NLV)

“Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.” (Matthew 6:34 MSG)

“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (Matthew 6:34 NIV)

MORE: Restoring the Broken Places in an Unforgiving World

RESOURCES: Journalling The Word can help us through challenging times. Keeping a journal can help us explore complex issues and make valuable personal discoveries so we can free ourselves from our pain. My 9th book, The Grace Daily Challenge Journal, is designed to help readers and writers explore what the Bible says about grace and finding forgiveness, as they Journal The Word.

MEET Becky Cortino

Good Morning Sunshine!

In the cool darkness of the still morning arises a familiar shrill chorus calling all to welcome the sunshine. The birds remind me how we should greet each new day gladly, for the opportunities that lie ahead in the hours yet to come. 

Breaking through the trees, this sunrise was so spectacular at 6:10AM, it beckoned me outside to enjoy it with our feathered friends, along with all the other wildlife in the wood. joy in the morning! 

Why do I say this? Why do I feel this? Because I’m reminded of something so important and want to share it with you: if for even a minute you’re doubting your worth or feeling uncertain about what’s next in these turbulent days, please remember with me…

“Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (Matthew 6:26 NIV)

“If you decide for God, living a life of God-worship, it follows that you don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds.” (Matthew 25-26 MSG)

Look at the birds! They don’t worry about what to eat—they don’t need to sow or reap or store up food—for your heavenly Father feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than they are.” (Matthew 26 TLB)

Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?” (Matthew 26(NASB)

…and about a red sky in the morning — I’m reminded of an adage found in this reference, assuring me upon further reflection that no matter what the experts’ say no one here (on earth) really knows what’s next — here’s proof?Read on…

“Some Bad Yeast

Some Pharisees and Sadducees were on him again, pressing him to prove himself to them. He told them, “You have a saying that goes, ‘Red sky at night, sailor’s delight; red sky at morning, sailors take warning.’ You find it easy enough to forecast the weather—why can’t you read the signs of the times? An evil and wanton generation is always wanting signs and wonders. The only sign you’ll get is the Jonah sign.” Then he turned on his heel and walked away.” (Matthew 16 1-4 MSG)

He replied, “You are good at reading the weather signs of the skies—red sky tonight means fair weather tomorrow; red sky in the morning means foul weather all day—but you can’t read the obvious signs of the times!” (Matthew 16:2-3 TLB)

“He replied, “When evening comes, you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red,’ and in the morning, ‘Today it will be stormy, for the sky is red and overcast.’ You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times.” (Matthew 16:2-3 NIV)

So in all of this I’m reminded not to “fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes,” even while preparing meals for our #shelteringin family. Facing taunting food shortages and crazy rising prices, we have food to eat. We are blessed!

At the outset of this #pandemic, anticipating unimaginable sweeping changes in life as we knew it, I vowed to use what we had on hand, making limited trips out — for all the reasons. The result has been some interesting combinations, fresh new discoveries, and reminders of how spoiled we’ve *all* been when we could enjoy whatever ‘sounded good for dinner’ or what we were *in the mood to eat* at the moment. It’s been good??

In these days of being #HomeTogether facing an unknown future gives time for  pausing to realize being concerned about “whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion” isn’t high priority… after all?

In order to keep routine I have continued to dress as I always would to go out, for work, etc. (I am a makeup girl — so daily!) With each passing day I recognize ‘current fashion’ is diminishing in importance. What’s trending in my world these days are a face mask and gloves?They’ve become my essential accessories! I predict the previous intense focus on the ‘latest’ will not resume in quite the same way once we all make it through this. 

?Pre-Pandemic Days: we were living fast and loose. Things were easier then, right?! Life was happening at warp speed — though never always quite ‘fast enough’ for the times of immediate gratification and short attention spans. The world was rocking at such a crescendo pace, an eventual reset had to happen! It did.

Reflecting on all of this and writing for 3.5 hours this morning inspired by these passages from the Bible, I’m reminded: continuing my work as a speaker and author — no matter how much I’ve always loved my work and all the busyness of a full life (as I perceive it) — the best life is not “tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds.” He has a Plan for all of us friends. He is in those plans, included as an integral part of them!

Take heart, friend. These are challenging times, troubling days. We are all truly in this together♥️God has this. You and I are important to Him. His love for all of us is far greater than we can ever fathom. I pray you feel His peace, find Joy in your day, showered with His abundant blessings, find freedom in His Word. The Son shines even on our darkest days?

God is good! I’m grateful — as I hope you are — for each new day and God’s reminders delivered to us in extraordinary ways. They speak affirmation, love and blessing through His artistry to our listening hearts.

MORE: Restoring the Broken Places in an Unforgiving World

RESOURCES: Journalling The Word can help us through challenging times. Keeping a journal can help us explore complex issues and make valuable personal discoveries so we can free ourselves from our pain. My 9th book, The Grace Daily Challenge Journal, is designed to help readers and writers explore what the Bible says about grace and finding forgiveness, as they Journal The Word.

MEET Becky Cortino

Your Calling — is Yours


If you feel a calling, don’t let a ‘friend’ convince you otherwise. God can use anyone. Maybe you confided a ‘nudge’ you feel to serve in a new ministry to someone trusted. They begin to explain to you how UNqualified and completely ill-equipped you are to handle such a task. 

Worse yet: After immobilizing you, they grab your blessing and run with it, attempting to make your calling their newest mission while turning their back on you?Well. Good luck to them with that!

Throughout history we have seen God call the least likely to do amazing things. How did they do it? He prepared and equipped them for their mission. He always remained close by. And it was all for His glory, not the for the fame and accomplishment of doer of the deed. 

He empowers those who faithfully heed His calling. Those who follow His leading are enabled to accomplish His Plan. It’s all about Him, not us. 

Often the preparation takes us through rough terrain, including an arduous journey, but there is a purpose to all of it. It is His Plan and for His purpose, and it is happening if we’re willing to step up in obedience and step out in faith to do it. Remaining diligent in our calling is a willingness to take that first step and keep going.

Never Walk Away

“Dear friend, guard Clear Thinking and Common Sense with your life;

    don’t for a minute lose sight of them.

They’ll keep your soul alive and well,

    they’ll keep you fit and attractive.

You’ll travel safely,

    you’ll neither tire nor trip.

You’ll take afternoon naps without a worry,

    you’ll enjoy a good night’s sleep.

No need to panic over alarms or surprises,

    or predictions that doomsday’s just around the corner,

Because God will be right there with you;

    he’ll keep you safe and sound.” 

~ Proverbs 3:21-26 ( MSG)

MORE: Restoring the Broken Places in an Unforgiving World

RESOURCES: Journalling The Word can help us through challenging times. Keeping a journal can help us explore complex issues and make valuable personal discoveries so we can free ourselves from our pain. My 9th book, The Grace Daily Challenge Journal, is designed to help readers and writers explore what the Bible says about grace and finding forgiveness, as they Journal The Word.

MEET Becky Cortino