Where Is He?

Did you see that baby cowering in the corner, trying to hide from the screams and profanity swirling around her head?

Did you notice the young boy who got into a fight at school, making his friends a substitute for his anger, because he can’t hit his abuser?

Did you recognize the young teen shielding her face from the crowd, looking for the one who will make her feel loved and secure?

Where is God in all of this? Where is His mercy? Where is His grace?

Do you see that man marching off to war, preparing to slay a few demons of his own in the battle?

Do you notice the woman working three jobs, living a frazzled, exhausted life, simply trying to give her child something a little better? 

Do you realize the old man wandering the halls, the same who doesn’t even know his children’s names who desperately long to love him and reach through his darkness? 

Where is God in all of this? Where is His mercy? Where is His grace?

Some ask and plead. Some scream in demand. Some just sit and stare. Others simply walk away, veering this way and that, never making much sense of the journey. 

“He’s always there and always faithful,” says the church walls. “Just look up and you will find all you need,” states the sign as the tender ones lie dying on the front steps. My mind wonders if we really make a difference. Do we really share and care?

Some lash out in anger. Some wallow and cry. Others become cold and stone-like, never realizing hope knocking at the door.

His love never wavers. His mercy never fails. Just because you cannot see the sun through the tornadic clouds doesn’t void its reality. Hurricanes never validate the lack of peaceful showers on the ‘morrow. 

Some answers I will never find until the other side. Some questions will still remain after the crisis of one life has vanished. Yet, I have found this truth to remain:  He is faithful. He is love. He is true. 

He will be there when you need Him even in the quietness of your soul. He will never leave you in your deepest sorrow or shame. He will remain when all else fails, when everyone else has disappeared into the dark of night. He will remain. He will be a shield. He will be a refuge. 

Just call on His name and find He is the Hope which remains. 

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

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Tuesday’s Treats #63

Jenkins Deli

Location: Cleveland, Tn



Are We Like Him?

As Easter draws near, and we get ready to celebrate with our songs, our meals and our families, I wonder if we remember who Christ truly is. He is Christ the King. He is Life Everlasting. He is Savior, and He is our Risen Lord.

If we who call ourselves Christian are not living as Christ, then our words are not true. He was light to a darkened world. He was love to an angry crowd. He was truth to the hypocrite, the sinner and the lost. He was a healing balm to the broken and the bruised. He gave up His life for those who hated Him the most for just one to see His forgiveness and love while on the cross.

Does the world see Jesus in me and you? The Jesus that they see, does it make them want more or less of Him?

Friday’s Friends #10

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Today is Friday, and it is time for the 10th posting of Friday’s Friends. This has been such a fun edition to my blog, and I do hope you all have enjoyed them as much as I have!

This week, I would like to share with you a special blogger with whom I have made “friends” quite a while back. He has a great blog over at Windblownwords, and I do hope you will peruse through his posts. One of his recent blogs that I found of great encouragement was this one about the importance of our writing and sharing what’s inside. Paul writes with integrity, maturity and wisdom, and it has been a delight to follow his words.

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Celebrate Everyday

As we were driving home the other day, I was overwhelmed with thoughts of how life truly is a vapor, gone before we know it. This week is a very eventful one to prove this point… 

Soon, I will celebrate over 40+ years of living, and my (maternal) grandmother, with whom I share this day, will celebrate a spry 88 years…later this week, we will lay to rest my dear (step-paternal) grandfather… This is the same week, just a few short years ago, my cousins said goodbye to their father, and another friend said goodbye to the love of her life. This year will be 15 years since my grandfather passed, but if the moment is right, I can “cloud up and rain on you” in a New York minute. 

I have lost friends to tragedy, family members to cancer and acquaintances to sicknesses and disease. These moments have all taught me well…life IS but a vapor. Please cherish it like there’s no tomorrow. Share it like you have plenty more, and pass it on tenderly to all those coming behind…they can only possess what we leave for them. Could it be that their wanderings just might be shortened and their pain lessened by our legacy…

Featured Guest

Today, I’d like to share with you a piece our oldest son wrote the other day… his honesty through prose simply amazes me and humbles me…

Pretend your heart is like white converse. You wanna keep it clean so you pray and worship while you’re at church, but once you go to school, you may cuss someone out cuz they “hurch” you. And it’s like dirt, cuz it ruins your reputation. You see reputation comes along with your outspoken salvation. Cuz, once you’ve made an example to one person, it’ll spread. And though you may apologize, you’ll keep living in dread, cuz of the one thing you maybe said keeps coming back to guilt you. So, you think that if you keep doing it, you’ll be okay, but to your dismay, you just dig yourself a deeper hole. So, when you lie about it to your parents, your mindset will take its toll and mess you up much more than you could ever imagine. Your demons turn into dragons, and you have these night visions of flames of hell engulfing you while you’re waiting for God to start talking to you, but you’re too far gone, because you haven’t confessed of what you’ve done. So you try and run. Run from the ones you hurt and skurt to a last resort to be like Kurt. You start to flirt with death. But all around you, it’s like Macbeth, cuz your world is falling apart at the seams when you replay the memories like scenes in a movie until you can’t take it anymore, and you fall apart. This is a lot of what I’ve been going through. I’ve been lost, not knowing what to do, until I talked to someone, and he told me the truth, and I’ve been trying to get closer. Closer to who I need to be. Now, if you can see where I’m going, I ask for you to accept my apology. I know it’ll take time, and I need a clean slate and accountability, but if I confess and repent, the Lord will help. So, I ask if you could forgive me for what I ruined with y’all, and after I’ve knelt before God, I hope I can make things right. That’s all I have to say tonight. Thank you. 

Penned – JG – 3/28/17

Tuesday’s Treats #62

ML’s Italian Life Cafe and The Cellar

Location: Blairsville, Ga


I have actually done a review on this restaurant before; however, because we had only had desserts at this new location, I thought it only fitting to review again. This new location has brought a few changes and adjustments to both the atmosphere and menu choices, but after today, I do believe I like this one even better than the old. 


The desserts are still some of the best you can find, and because they are made fresh daily, the choices will vary from time to time. However, each one is decadent and served with the utmost class and quality. The coffee is delicious, perfectly balanced in strength and sweetness, and the atmosphere, in which you dine, is incredible. 

This new location actually has two parts. If you park in the downtown square, you can easily walk into the upstairs cafe. However, we are a little biased to the downstairs, “Cellar,” as it’s named for its basement locale. A simple walk around the building and down the steps will take you there. Complete with brick walls, low-lying ceilings with exposed beams, and the smell of a fresh ground brew, this place makes you want to grab a good book or good company, hold a cup of joe in hand and stay a long while. 

The quaint seating arrangements, black tablecloths and rich place settings in the “cellar” type surrounds make you feel you’ve just stepped into another time and place. Everything we ordered was absolutely incredible. Our party of four chose the Five Cheese Tortelloni, Italian Wedge, Chicken Wrap and Pasta Sorrento. All the portions were huge, and Oh. My. Goodness. I cannot describe to you the palette delight! The tortelloni was stuffed with mozzarella, fontina, Parmesan, grana padano and Romano cheese, topped with a house made marinara, and served with your choice of meatballs or sausage. My husband chose both. I didn’t taste the sausage, but the meatballs were to die for, so rich and flavorful. 


The Italian Wedge was beyond what I could have imagined with the ginormous serving. The savory baked balsamic chicken was a perfect blend of deliciousness with the Gorgonzola cheese and applewood bacon. It is normally served with blue cheese dressing and tomatoes, but as I attest both, I opted for a side of the Italian with feta cheese and a side of the garlic Parmesan. I don’t which I liked better. I could not believe how much I enjoyed this, because as much as I like salad, it’s not a “top of the list” choice when it comes to entrees, especially when indulging in an Italian cuisine. Yet, this day, I am so glad I “preferred just a salad.” 

The chicken wrap was just as large and tasty, as was the Pasta Sorrento. There was so much food, we almost opted out of dessert. However, the chocolate peanut butter brownie pie with a side latte called our name out a little too loudly to be ignored. My husband and brother-in-law devoured that yumminess while my sister-in-law and I sipped a cup of delicious Vanilla Nut Latte topped with caramel. It was a perfect ending to a perfect meal. 

We so enjoyed this new, inviting location that, had it not been we had other things on our agenda that day, I believe we could have sat around enjoying the atmosphere and good conversation until dinner time rolled in. We will definitely be back again and again. 

Oh, one more note to mention…they also have fresh pressed olive oils and balsamic vinegars. There are samples to taste, and you can even “sample” these with your entrees. I did try the White Coconut Balamic Vinegar with my chicken, and it tasted just like the best coconut chicken I’ve ever had. These are available for sale as well, and there were several Italian and French imports from which to choose. 


Check out more here on their website. 

With or Without Hope

He is our only Hope…

the grizzle grist mill

I’ve read several posts lately from those who are grieving and who are lonely. I’ve been there, in that lonely place, struggling to survive the pain…

These posts make my heart sad, not because the bloggers are heartbroken or grief-stricken, but because so many  grieve with no hope. For without hope, we have no purpose in the pain. We have no future beyond the pain. Without hope, it is all just meaningless and worthless. Without hope, life doesn’t seem worth living.

Yet, where there is hope, there is life beyond the pain. There is a purpose through the pain, and there is some semblance of meaning that we can try to grasp. There is something more that is worth holding onto.

It doesn’t mean we will never experience the pain, only that, deep down, we have a knowing that we will live BEYOND the pain, because there is something MORE…

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Pilgrims Passing Through

My apologies for reposting this so soon, but as my family prepares to say goodbye to a dear relative, I was reminded once again, this is not our home…one more reason heaven is sweeter everyday.

the grizzle grist mill

edb8cc042620994917ac978f91ed3c6bI am reminded of something, time and again, thatI think often gets lost in the shuffle of everyday living, periodic competitions with our fellow man and intermitten crises that, at times, seem to shield our vision from reality: We are ALL JUST PEOPLE living desperate lives trying to survive in this journey called life!

That moment when you feel “on top of your game,” when you feel nothing can ever stop you, and maybe even a little pride comes sneaking in to seduce you to the thought that your life is so much better than so many, remember this: we are ALL just one heartbeat away from saying goodbye to everything. There are no guarantees for tomorrow, and there are no promises beyond what God has given us in His Word.

As well, on that day when you feel “at the bottom of the bottom barrel,” when you feel nothing…

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Friday’s New Friends #9

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It’s Friday, and that means it’s time for another New Friends post! These are so fun to share with you!

Today, I’d like to share with you someone who has a common love of mine for Gatlinburg, Tn. Cjwagner24 has dedicated his whole blog to all things G’burg. He will tell you about local happenings, opinions about the area, beautiful sceneries you need to see and wonderful places you need to eat. I have really enjoyed discovering his blog, and I believe you will, too.

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