Tuesday, December 01, 2020

To Whom Should We Listen


Likely most of us would agree 2020 has been a tumultuous year. In the midst of the storm many voices have been clamoring to be heard - Mine included. I need to be cautious about what I have to say and when. And I must take heed to when it is best NOT to listen to my own voice. For some of you this may not be difficult, but I do not share that confidence.

For many weeks now my heart has been contemplating Matthew 5:14 - 16, which says this, "You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven."

Darkness cannot extinguish the light. In fact, the deeper the darkness the brighter the light becomes.

The Lord has been speaking to me. And I have been trying to listen. I must admit that the political atmosphere of our nation has made it difficult for me to hear His voice. I've been grieving over what has been taking place and sometimes I've been outraged and confused. How could such a thing happen in America? God reminds me that since the fall of mankind we have been warring with each other. This is not new and as Solomon has been known to say, "There is nothing new under the sun." 

I admire those willing to step into battle. Where would we be without people like Candace Owens, Dan Bongino, Lin Wood and Sidney Powell? I pray for them and many others who are on the front lines. But I am not one of them. My time for those kind of battles is past, for the most part. Yet, I am still a servant of God and long to do my best for Him wherever He calls me.

I've been praying, asking for discernment, wisdom and direction. It has been something like this - Lord, what is it that you want from me? Each time I hear, I want you to be a light. 

And so, that is what I will endeavor to do. One place where I can share the light of Christ to the broadest audience is on Facebook, at least for now. It is not easy for me to remain or to leave. I have many good friends on the site. However, the man who created and built the social network is not someone I admire nor do I wish to contribute to his wealth. However he offers me a place to shine the Light of Christ. And so I have decided to remain a part of the Facebook community until powers who control the site remove me or the Lord tells me to go.

When I made an announcement that I would be leaving I heard from many of you and I listened and prayed about what you had to say. You helped me make my decision.

My purpose on Facebook is to enjoy friendships and to be an encouragement to others. And no matter where I connect with humanity I strive to hear what the Lord wants of me. I love God and want to tell others about Him and His Son, Jesus. Oh, how He loves us.

Politics is something of interest to me. I am sometimes passionate about what is taking place in that realm, however I feel a need to disengage from that conversation, somewhat. I do believe that followers of Christ need to speak up and I will when I have given it thought and prayer. I want to contribute in a positive way wherever I find myself. And I do not want to disgrace My Father. I'm not so young these days and to be truthful the conflict takes a toll on me. I will leave much of it to those with more energy to share.

I am looking forward to finding and reengaging with my friends on Facebook and discovering new places to connect in positive ways with my human brothers and sisters around the globe. There are so many possibilities in this world. 

I will continue to pray, seeking God's will for my life and I would love to pray for you too. Let me know how I can do that. It's easy to leave me a note here on this page or privately on my Website at www.bonnieleon.com or my private messenger on Facebook or on my MeWe account.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Sunday, November 15, 2020

From Days Past


I came across a post I wrote several years ago, and it was clearly a good time for me to revisit it. I'd love to share it with you. So, here you go.
"I recently spoke at a women's retreat at the Oregon coast. It was a lovely place, a condo right on the beach. Fabulous! An aqua blue sky contrasted the deep blue of the ocean, and foaming waves crashed against rocks tossing their spray high into the air. When I stepped onto my deck I a sharp breeze and the smell of the sea greeted me. It was gorgeous and inspiring.

And yet, it wasn't enough.

I wanted more. I wanted to walk on the beach, to feel the frigid ocean water suck the sand from beneath my feet. I wished I could hunt for seashells and special rocks and sea creatures. Instead I remained in my room, resting, reading and praying. Occasionally I'd step onto my deck and soak in more of the beauty. I didn't mope, but I considered it.

Years ago there was a truck . . . on a corner . . . and it hit my van and changed my life. Now, instead of being the first one on the beach I have to be careful. Too much doing brings on too much pain. Sometimes I throw a pity party, but when I'm able to put aside self I am rewarded with a God view of my life and I can praise him for the new me. But on this weekend I wanted to be like everyone else.

I was speaking Saturday night and Sunday morning so I had to be careful not to overdo. If I hurt myself I might not be able to speak, and I couldn't let the ladies down. Giving a speech from a bed isn't very effective.

Interestingly enough the topic for the retreat just happened to be Embracing Life's Disappointments. And it was exactly what I needed to be focused on. In recent months life had thrown stones at me and my world seemed filled with disappointment. While preparing for the retreat I came to see that God had something to say to me.

He took me to stories of His people and revealed details of their lives that I'd never fully seen before. In the midst of their disappointments God was always there. And in these situations it was clear the difficulties were God orchestrated. When Joseph was sold into slavery God had a plan. Moses missed out on the Promised Land, but God gave him so much more--Moses got to see God face-to-face. Paul suffered devastating consequences for his faithful service, yet while in prison he sang praises to his Lord.

If I were in control of the world around me, I probably wouldn't have allowed that truck to hit me. But I'm sometimes short-sighted. I can't see the big picure - not the way God does. He sees it all. And His Word says that nothing touches me without His permission. So, I must trust Him. He knows what He's doing. When that truck hit my van, God knew that "life as usual" wasn't the way for me. He had something special for me.

It's because of Him I can say, "Thank you for adversity."

Only in weakness can we learn to rely more completely on God. Only in our trials do we exercise faith. When we need more than we possess, God gives the power and courage to overcome.

May you trust Him. He wants to bless your life."

It's now 2020. Many years have passed since I wrote this. I still live with disability and in some way I am worse off than before, but my next visit I make to the ocean will include a stroll along the beach. I will search for special shells and rocks and sea creatures and feel the sand beneath my feet. I've been working since March to get stronger and walking is now a daily delight. I can't wait for my next trip to the coast. It's going to be awesome!

Grace and peace to you from God,

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Love One Another


For many months now, our lives have been thrown askew. We've tried to be responsible citizens, searching for truth in the elections and sadly, many of us drew a line between one another. Christian brothers and sisters took sides. We passionately shared our feelings, sometimes in a not so good way. 

So, how does that sit with our Heavenly Father?

In John 15 Jesus commands his followers to love one another as he has loved us. This incredible love will reveal to the world that we are His children and true followers. We are to love in such way that we would lay down our lives for one another, just as Christ did for us.

If what I am seeing is accurate, more than a few of us are far from loving as Christ did.  From the very beginning of my walk with the Lord, nearly a half century ago, I've understood this command and way of living. I embraced it. And most of the time I was able to love as Christ asked me to, though I will admit to a few stumbles along the way. Today, however, it's not easy for me to obey His command. Politics have become a stumbling block.

I am not saying that it is wrong to be righteously angry. That is not a sin. What is wrong is that anger can morph into hatred. It is not right to hate my brothers and sisters in the Lord. I know it. I am fighting against it. And I know that God will carry me through to the other side where I can love with ease once more. 

But it's a struggle. Why?

It feels (and we all know how much we can trust our feelings) as if my beloved country is balancing precariously on a precipice and that some of the people I know as family in Christ are helping to push it off the cliff to be lost forever. I cry out, "Please don't destroy the America I love, the America that has given its people so many gifts, the America that offers true freedom."

Though not blind to President Trumps weaknesses, I have loved and admired him. He has stood courageously in the gap for Americans, trying to hold back the wave of a "new" America, one I don't recognize and one I fear. I've heard from immigrants who escaped Marxist regimes who asked, if America is made "new" where can we now go to escape?

I can't answer that question and I don't believe it is even for me to know. I only share it here to help you see the desperation I feel in my own heart. Even as I write this God reminds me He hasn't forsaken His people. He knows the beginning and the end and His love never ceases.

He is not asking me to surrender. He wants His followers to fight for truth, but what good is that if we forget how to love. The Lord would not ask us to do something that is impossible. As I pray for the outcome of this election and the stability of our country I am also praying for God's will. I am first and foremost His child. He is before all things. 

I ask you to join me in prayer. And if you are struggling as I am, turn to the Lord for the strength to do what is right. He will give you what you ask for if you ask in His name, His will. May we keep our focus on eternity. We know that an eternity with The Father waits for us, but there are many who do not have that assurance. They are held captive by the enemy. So as we love one another may we reach out to those who have not yet become part of God's family, and may our love help show the way to an eternity where perfection waits. 

Grace and peace to you from God,


Thursday, November 05, 2020



The past four years have been difficult for Trump supporters. We have been laughed at, maligned, verbally and physically attacked for supporting our president, a man who has fought harder for this country than any in my lifetime. We spoke up only to be knocked down. We spoke, in agreement with our president, for the innocent unborn, for the right of religious freedom, for the right of free speech and the right to bear arms -for our liberty. 

All the while the mainstream press lied to the American people, secreting the truth and creating fictional stories that fit their agenda. They were no longer the press, but rather an ideological powerhouse who walked in lockstep with the liberal progressive party. When a massive mail in vote was called for we, the practical minded, knew it was unwise, unwieldly, unworkable and unnecessary. Something like that cannot be thrown together willy-nilly. 

We were right. The results speak for themselves. Hundreds of counties in this country have more votes than they have registered voters. Voting places refuse reasonable oversight. Votes, thousands of them, are showing up at polling places after counting had been stopped. There was no clear explanation as to why. What were they waiting for? And now reports are coming in from people who voted and have discovered their votes were not counted. Clearly voter fraud is going on, but if we speak up we are slapped down for be hysterical or unreasonable or deceived. None of which is true.

I do not know what the results of this election will be, but I know enough to be alarmed at the turn our country has taken. This deceitful road has no good destination. I am embarrassed and ashamed and disappointed. The powers (which are many) have taken control. 

Still, we the people, cannot be complacent. Now more than ever we need to stand up and fight. Fight for what is right, for what is good and honorable. If we lay down our arms in fear or apathy America will cease to exist, at least the American that has been a strong and a powerful force for good in this world. We will go down as dramatically and disastrously as the Titanic did decades ago. As it was then it will be now, death and destruction will follow. America and its people will be dragged to the bottom of a dark sea and the world will never be the same.

I know I sound hopeless, but I'm not. We are only human beings, but there is a God who loves and who is wise. He will not abandon us. But we better be hanging onto His hand if we want to survive.

Praying that in the days to come you will know God's grace and peace.


Sunday, October 25, 2020

Dust to Dust; Ashes to Ashes


The Archie Fire has come and gone. The smoke has lifted. There will be a tomorrow.

I spend time each day walking my forested neighborhood, hoping to make peace with what the Archie Fire left behind. A few days ago while walking the line between my property and my brother-in-law's the Lord reminded me of something important. Everywhere I looked I saw piles of rubble. Piles that represented hard work, dreams, and precious memories. And copious tears.

My first sense was to grab hold of the grief, then I heard the quiet voice of the Lord say, "Dust to Dust. Ashes to Ashes."

Nothing on this earth was made to last forever. Eventually the things we love most will become dust. We know this, but facing it can be excruciating. Are we ever really ready to to release what we love?

I don't feel badly about cherishing special mementos in my home, things that came from my grandparents and parents, thoughtful gifts from friends and family. They matter. God created us to love one another, and so many of our treasures represent people and personal history. But do we hang on too tightly? I was in something of a panic while evacuating and trying too decide what was most important. What should I take?

In truth I could have been forced to walk away with nothing other than my life and the lives of my loved ones and still known I was blessed. 

I was not been required to release a home filled with memories as so many others have and I am grateful. But one day, all of the "stuff" won't matter at all. The only thing that will be on my heart is the love I share with my friends, family and my Lord.

The Word says, "The Lord formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being."

One day, we will be forced to release our dearest treasures. In Ecclesiastes it says, "All come from dust, and to dust all return."

Do not hold worldly possessions too tightly. Spend time with the treasures that breathe and have beating hearts. For love is all you will take with you when you leave this earth.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Sunday, September 20, 2020

Fire Storm


Twelve days ago a firestorm changed my life and that of everyone else in my small community of Glide, Oregon. Since that terrible day I've struggled to understand the gnawing sorrow inside me. I'm beginning to understand some of it and hope that writing this post will help me and possibly others who are struggling with some of the same questions.

September 8th a fire called the Archie Fire stormed across thirty miles of the Umpqua Forest and in less than 12 hours it exploded on the ridge above my  house. It is burning still.

My family and I got out before it burst over the ridge.

With a few of our most precious belongings and our travel trailer, kids and grandkids, dogs and cats we trekked down our hill and then hunkered down in a small town nearby where we waited for word. 

At around 10:00 PM the call we feared rang through on my husband's phone. Our home and all the homes on top of our hill were burning.

That night we went to bed but didn't sleep. We prayed for a miracle.

The following day our youngest daughter and a friend had to know what had happened and they dared make the trip back up the road. Fires were still burning. Smoke was thick. And fallen, charred trees blocked the road. With the help of experience and a chain saw they kept going. 

Sarah called from our property. "Mom. The house is still standing!"

How could it be? People saw the fire charge over the ridge and explode on the top of our hill.

We rejoiced, but any joy we felt was tempered by the news of many others who had lost their homes. Sorrow burrowed into our hearts.

Such devastation. So much loss.

Two days later Greg and I made our way home to see what had happened. Fires still smoldered, open flames sought fuel, smoke was choking and firemen defended our homes. When we turned onto our driveway we immediately saw our home standing in a fog of smoke. Everything around it had burned. How had it survived?

Our woodshed, with a winter's supply of firewood, was gone along with our tractor, a riding lawn mower, Greg's motorcycle, and a variety of other farm tools stored there. Strangely, a lawn chair stood only feet away, untouched. Fires are weird. We had cardboard boxes still on our porch from our recent move. There was soot and ash and burned leaves inside of them, and yet they had not burned.

We lost several outbuildings, including my chicken house. My sweet hens perished. A garden shop and another shop that contained a long list of tools and other items that we had accumulated over the years were now a pile of smoldering rubble.

They seem trivial in light of what our neighbors lost. We still have our home. I grieve their losses, but I am also sorrowing ours. It doesn't seem right, but my feelings are my feelings. I can't change that. I am trying to understand it.   

Greg and I built the chicken house together. We had fun doing it even though we squabbled a bit. Lonnie, a good friend who passed away a few years ago, made a shingle to hang. It said, Gregland's Best. Every time we looked at that sign we thought of him.

A wood shed doesn't seem like much, but many memories abound there. It's silly, but I used to love to chop and stack wood. And when we prepared for winter, we did it together as a family. Some sawed wood, others chopped and stacked. In recent years my job has been more about supplying hot coffee or cocoa to the workers. Precious days still. 

And there was our jeep. It was just a thing, but we shared good times together in that jeep. It was beloved by our family and there was some vying over who might inherit it one day. But it's gone now.

Also gone are the young fruit trees we loved and the blueberry plants and grapes we put in just this year. Not important, really, but we loved planting them and watching them grow.

My husband spent decades accumulating tools of every kind. There wasn't much he didn't know how to do and all those chores required a tool. He had something for everything and most of the tools had a story to tell. When we went through the rubble, trying to remember what each building had contained, he couldn't disguise the loss he felt.


We didn't lose our house. It is still standing there in the meadow. We are SO grateful and at the same time we can't help but feel we don't deserve it. There are so many mixed feelings floating around. We tell ourselves there is no reason to feel guilt, but feelings are sometimes hard to control. At present count at least 109 homes were lost. That is 109 families who are suffering a loss we can't fully comprehend. We grieve for them. And it doesn't seem right, but God is sovereign. I don't have to have an answer as to why my home still stands. But I will do my best to honor God's mercy toward me and my family.

I've puzzled over why this grief is SO powerful. I've known this kind of thing can happen, but I didn't expect that I'd feel it so intensely. After all, it's just "stuff" right?

When my husband and I walked to the back of our property and then drove up to the end of the road, the devastation was shocking, incalculable. The forest is decimated. Huge towering trees stand blackened. Many are dead. More will die. Some of the trees are burned from the inside and many have roots that are still burning. Acre after acre, mile after mile the forest looks dead. My mind tells me it will come back, but my heart sees the death of my wilderness home. And I think that this is the key to the depth of sorrow I feel. This place, not the wood and mortar structure standing on my property, but the forest, has been my home for more than forty years. The beauty and wildlife have nourished my soul all these years. 

The logical part of me knows the forests will return. I wait in anticipation to see the first new green sprouts that emerge in the blackened forest floor. I will take photos and I will share them with you. In the meantime I marvel at the miracle that so many homes did survive and that flowers still bloom around my house, and some of the neighbors chickens are clucking, and the wild mama turkey and her nearly grown chick still visit. And I will never forget the joy I felt when I discovered the three little goats from next door had survived and found their way to my scarred garden.

The people of Glide will never be the same. We have survived. We have a long, painful path to walk, but we are loved by God and we are pulling together, as we always do, and we will be better and stronger than we were.

The first day Greg and I went to the house we saw something on our way back down the road that stirred my heart. Many months before someone built a bench, a place to rest and take in the beauty of the forest. When we came around a corner and saw it there amidst swirling smoke I was awestruck. Fire above and fire below destroyed the forest, but the bench remained. I like to think it is there, enjoying the beauty of the forest it once knew and imagining the woodland that will return one day.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Monday, July 13, 2020

To Speak or Not To Speak

In the book of James chapter one verse nineteen we are told this - "Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry."

Oh, how convicting are those words. I have often done just the opposite. I am working toward getting that under control, but am certain I'll never perfect it. 

I am left with a question. When is it appropriate to speak out?

In these days of Covid-19 and political unrest passions run high. And with the availability of social networking we have an avenue where we can be heard. However, being heard may be more limited than we might think.

This "speaking out" issue is something I struggle with. 

I am able to respond to a post if I choose, but should I? I have no qualms when posting encouraging or supportive words. But what should I do if I truly disagree with a post or the writer has stated something that is patently untrue?

I've heard people say God doesn't need us to speak up. Really? Then why did God raise up the voices of his saints throughout the ages? Some of those voices were truly harsh. The Old Testament Prophets could be downright terrifying. And even the Prince of Peace called the Pharisees hypocrites and said they were like "white washed tombs." That's strong speech.

So, what do we do? We're scrolling along on Facebook or Twitter or some other online network and we come across a statement we feel compelled to respond to.

Let's go back to James. He says first, to listen. I'm thinking we need to be thoughtful and not fire back with the first response that comes to mind. Maybe we should consider why we feel we must speak. What do we want to accomplish? Will it be of benefit? 

Then James says be slow to speak. Clearly we should take time to examine our hearts and to temper our responses with God's wisdom and grace. And perhaps we will come to the conclusion that a response is not in the best interest of others in the conversation. Just take time to consider it.

He goes on to say be slow to anger. That's pretty clear. We should be careful not to go off like a firecracker and attack. I've seen so much of that in recent years, and especially the last few months. It is rarely helpful and more often than not it causes hurt followed by more mean spirited postings or replies. It's not the best way to find common ground. And in the end those who might benefit from a rich and congenial conversation will simply tune out.

So, does all that mean we need to remain quiet and keep our thoughts to ourselves? Maybe. Sometimes. But I'm convinced God wants us to be speaking truth and love to the world. We've been commanded to tell others about Christ and the gift of eternal life that he offers humankind.

We have been given the gift of the presence of the Holy Spirit, who indwells us. He gives wisdom and understanding and we have instructed to rely on him. Christ would not have told us this if the Holy Spirit were unreliable. With caution and good will we should speak out. The world is dying for the lack of the knowledge and truth. 

As we step out, remember the fruit of the spirit - love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Wouldn't the world be a more beautiful place if more of the spirit were evident in our daily lives?

Jesus tells us to love our neighbor as ourselves. Maybe if we keep that in mind the next time we feel we must contribute God's truth or our opinion or perspective on a topic there may be a better response.

Keep praying for one another. Love one another.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Monday, July 06, 2020

Father Knows Best

Life is filled with big decisions. How often do we move ahead with some plan or other without taking the time to stop, contemplate, pray, and then wait for God's direction?

Do you remember the television show from the 60's called Father Knows Best? I loved the show, though in hindsight I can see its many flaws. In its day the father, Jim Anderson played by Robert Young, his wife Margaret, oldest daughter Betty, son Bud, and cutie pie Kathy played out what we all hoped and even believed was what a real live family should look like, a father at the helm who could be trusted to always do the right and best thing for his family.

Those were good days, full hope.

Fast forward to  2012, with Father Knows Best so far in the rear view mirror it was barely remembered. My mother had been very ill after going through open heart surgery, which was followed by a life threatening staph infection. While still recovering we moved Mom here to Roseburg.

Part of the process of getting reestablished in a new town included finding physicians to help care for Mom's health. A cardiologist was one of those on the list. We got into one of the best in our area. We really like him and he clearly knew his job. However, something he said back then caught my attention in recent days. When he learned that my mother had open heart surgery the previous year at the age of 87 and the terrible recovery she endured afterward he was angry and said that her surgeon should never have done such a procedure on a woman my mother's age, even though not doing it meant she would have died in a few short months. I agreed with him, but now looking back I think he was wrong in my mother's case. I'm grateful the doctor who performed my mother's surgery took the risk.

It's true, Mom did suffer through a five month recovery, but she was resilient and continued to love life and was thankful for each new day. And those of us who love her were also grateful. She made a difference in the lives of those she touched during those six additional years.

Mom having fun at her 80th birthday party.

We, humans, think we know best. Certainly there are times when we are fearful and uncertain in our decisions, but all too often we step forward with more confidence than we ought to have. There is only one who knows what's best every time. God knows best. Our Father knows best.

I once told a woman, who had been diagnosed with a very serious cancer and had been working through some of the decisions she needed to make, that perhaps she should consider simply making the most out of what time she had left. That's not what she wanted. She wanted to live and to spend all the time possible with her loved ones. And that's what she did. We had that conversation about twenty years ago, and she is still a vibrant part of her family. I was SO wrong. Every time I think of that moment when I stepped out with advice that couldn't have been more wrong for her I feel ashamed. I didn't take the time to check my plan with The Father's. 

When faced with consequential decisions we need to listen to experts and to our loved ones ... but we should never, ever leave out God. He's the one who knows the whole story. 

So, what can we do that will help us make better choices?
  • Wait - Don't be in a hurry.
  • Pray
  • Go to God's Word - Read it. Contemplate on it.
  • Pray
  • Imagine what might be.
  • Dare to hope.
  • Pray   
  • Worship - Music - Dance - Nature - Beauty.
  • Remember there is a big picture.
  • Steer clear of Eeyore thinking.
  • Pray
  • Trust God

There is more that can be added to this list. And I'm sure you noticed that I included prayer more than once. It's something we can't do too much. If you have something you'd like to include let me know in a comment.

We are imperfect human beings and no matter how hard we strive to get things right, sometimes we won't. But that doesn't mean God will desert us. He'll stay with us, catch us when we fall, set us back on our feet and continue to breathe life into us.

Even in dark days, life is good and God is good.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Monday, June 29, 2020

Best Worst Thing

While reading through my morning devotional, which happened to be titled "best worst thing" a question nudged me. What was my best worst thing?

I have many. But this morning I was carried back to a June day in 1991. My daughter and I were headed up a road that winds along a local tributary called Little River. We were singing along to the radio and enjoying the rush of summer air coming in through our opened windows. I needed to deliver a meal to a home bound couple on the river. We were about six miles up when a fully loaded log truck with a second trailer approached us from the opposite direction.

I noticed that as it came around the corner its outside tires were lifted up off the pavement. It was going to tip over!

And it did. 

The truck spilled giant logs onto the roadway and down the bank in front of us, then the trailer barreled at us. My mind searched for a way to survive, but no idea seemed to be enough. Certain my daughter and I were facing our last moments on this planet, I slammed on my brakes, hoping to diminish the impact and steered as close to the edge of the highway as I dared. And then ... amid the screaming sounds of screeching breaks, shattering glass and grinding metal the truck trailer slammed into our van.

That was a worst moment, worst day,  and what followed were the worst months of my life.

My daughter Kristi and I survived that terrible accident. Kristi was physically uninjured but she still carries emotional scars. Me ... well I'm thankful for my life. I had a number of injuries, some that never healed. 

My life changed dramatically. I couldn't return to work. Couldn't clean my house. Couldn't cook meals. Couldn't buy groceries. And a lot more couldn'ts. In the early weeks, I thought I would recover, but I never fully did. When doctors told me I would have to accept my painful condition and go on with life I was pretty devastated.

But that's just the worse part of the story. There are a lot of those kind of stories in the Bible. Something terrible happens to one of God's people and it looks like the worst thing ever, but God steps in and uses it as a best thing.

Because of my injuries I couldn't return to work and I slid into a deep depression. The darkness drove me to search for the Light. I needed God so badly and knew He was my only salvation. I prayed that He would reveal His plans to me.

Before the accident I'd played at writing. It was a fun little hobby. But God wanted it to be more than just a pleasant pass time. He stirred my heart into a fervent desire to create with the written word. With courage given by God and with guidance from other authors I stepped into the writing world with a first book, The Journey of Eleven Moons. 

It was part of my best thing. Incredibly it became a best selling book. God is so good. 

He opened doors and I kept moving forward. I've never had a big footprint in the writing world, but I've had a grand time creating stories - twenty three so far. It hasn't been easy but the rewards have been huge.

I've worked hard, trusting God, and he has blessed me. I hear from people nearly every day who have been encouraged or uplifted by reading something I've written. It's gratifying to know that my small footprint is having a big impact in some people's lives. 

When I look back and remember that what I originally thought was my worst thing was actually a best thing. It was and is all because of God. He helps me along my way every day.

What about you? Do you have a worst thing? Believe God is in the midst of that and it can be your best thing.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Monday, June 22, 2020


This morning when I reached for a pair of earrings I wondered what is was that I liked about them. They were purposely made imperfect. The round spheres are not truly round. That's okay with me. I like things that are "flawed".

Imperfection surrounds me. Some of it is done purposely. For instance, I don't like items lined up in a perfect row. I want my treasures displayed in a random pattern. When my granddaughter sometimes cleans my house I always find that she's lined everything up "perfectly". I follow behind and place the items the way they were. I almost never hang paintings on the wall in a row - they go up in a random pattern. And I prefer writing that is a bit flawed. I enjoy the flavor and texture of a story more than a perfectly constructed sentence.

Does this mean I'm flawed? I certainly am. But none of us are "perfect".

I've always been the one to stand up for the underdog. I even cheer for the football team that is supposed to lose.

What about this incredible creature? The way it's put together doesn't seem to make sense. Why the long neck and long legs? Of course there is a reason, and in spite of its gangly appearance it is a gorgeous, powerful animal. God knew what he was doing when he created it.

The earrings in the photo above are one of my favorite pairs, but I never receive compliments when I wear them. Perhaps that means I'm the only one who likes them. But that's okay. I believe we sometimes need to embrace imperfections. I'm not saying we ought to go out and purposely cause destruction or trouble. And certainly shouldn't purposely sin against God. But we are each created as individuals. We're not cut out by a cookie cutter. God created us perfectly imperfect. And He loves His creation. 

Let's embrace who we are. We were sculpted by the Hands of our Creator to be an individual with our own voice and our own way of seeing the world. 

If He loves us as we are, maybe we can love ourselves and others just as they are.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Tuesday, June 16, 2020

News From Deer Creek

On March fifteenth I had a successful launch for my most recent book, One Hundred Valleys. Though I must admit Covid-19 did complicate things a bit. Still, I was able to get the word out and heard back from many of you. It's loyal readers and followers who keep us writers going. Thank you.

The fun's not over yet. I will be posting a newsletter in a few days with news and updates. Make sure to sign up for my Table Talk newsletter so you won't miss out on what's up. You can find the button on my home page of this website at https://www.bonnieleon.com.

I'm celebrating summer with a GIVEAWAY! So, check it out. News is coming your way soon.

If you read the book One Hundred Valleys, you'll know this character. She is the beloved Margaret Clark. She really is a lovely person and a good cook. 

Margret owns the Deer Creek Cafe and there's always something delicious cooking in the kitchen. She makes especially good pies. I thought you might like to try her apple pie, it's a favorite at the cafe. I've included it below so you can give it a try. If you do, I'd love to hear from you and know how it turned out.

Margaret's tasty Apple Pie

Crust:    2 cups Flour
              1 teaspoon salt
              2 tablespoons powdered sugar
Cut in:  2/3 cups Lard (shortening)
             2/3 cup water – sprinkle it over the dry ingredients and work into the dough.

Do not overwork the dough or you will end up with a tough crust.

Divide the dough in half. Gently work both halves into a round shape. Sprinkle flour on a kitchen counter and, using a rolling pin, roll out to approximately a 10 inch circle. Drape dough crust in a 9” pie pan and let it set while you prepare the apple filling.

Filling:   6 – 7 crisp, flavorful apples, peeled, halved and sliced thinly.
      3/4 cup sugar
      1 tsp. cinnamon
      ¼ tsp. nutmeg (optional)
      ¼ cup flour or 3 Tablespoons corn starch.

Mix the filling in a large bowl. If desired for more tender apples, let it set overnight on the counter (the night before you prepare your crust). Pour filling into the bottom crust.

Place the 2nd portion of pie dough over the top of the filling and press down gently until it touches the apple mixture. Fold the dough around the edges (the top crust over the bottom crust), so it is well sealed, then crimp between your fingers all the way around. Use a fork to poke several vent holes. You can whip egg white and use a pastry brush to wash it over the crust if desired.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place pie on a lower rack in the oven and bake for 45 minutes. To ensure the bottom crust is well done you may want to add an additional 15 minutes baking time, but do not overcook the top crust.


There's still a lot going on in Deer Creek. I'm working on a sequel to One Hundred Valleys. There are lots of adventures to come. 

I pray you are doing well. 

A Word from the Lord.

"I am the Lord your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you." 

Isaiah 41:13

Grace and peace to you from God,


Tuesday, June 09, 2020

A Mile In Your Shoes

The last four months I have felt as if I were living within a category 5 hurricane. Covid-19 struck and spread across our world locking people in their homes. Hundreds of thousands have died. George Floyd was murdered by a police officer, and we watched his agonizing death on television news. Outraged Americans joined together in protest, united. And then militant groups hijacked a heartfelt and significant movement. In the midst of looting, destruction, more murders and beatings, George Floyd's death was diminished.

I've posted my thoughts about all of this on my Facebook page but today I want to bring our focus back to one another. We are all related, one family - humankind. 

When I was young and sometimes made judgments about others my mother was always quick to correct me. She would say that I couldn't truly understand what was going on inside another person's heart. She would add, "You have not walked a mile in their shoes." How right she was. She knew and understood the pain of discrimination. She'd grown up poor and native in a place that saw her as less valuable than others. And even as an adult she could be brought to tears by the memories.

You may not know what it is like to live as a Native Alaskan. You may not know what it is like to be told that one day you will be blind. You  may not know how difficult it is to live as a fat person in a world that detests and judges fat people. (I have stories) And you may know the pain of losing a young and vibrant father when you are only twenty-three. We don't share all the same experiences, so how can we know?

I do not know what it is like to be Black in America. And there are thousands of other experiences I can't fully understand.

However, we all know what fear is like. We know pain. We know sorrow. We know rejection. And because we know we can empathize ... if we choose to. We can listen and have open minds. God tells us to love one another ... all others.

This storm we find ourselves in can destroy our world as we know it. But we don't have to let it. We can place our hurts and disappointments and our fears in God's hands. And most of all we can hand over our hate. The enemy loves hate, and he will use it to destroy us if we let him.

As the weeks have passed a song has been playing through my mind. It's one we all know. And I post it here to remind us of its simple but profound truth.

"Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world. Red and yellow, black and white they are precious in His sight, Jesus loves the little children of the world."

In these difficult days let's sing that song and pray that God will help us see one another through His eyes of love.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Tuesday, June 02, 2020

Even So ... Praise Him

In these sorrowful days it often feels as if I, us, we Believers are being oppressed. The evil one slinks through our court system and maligns our government even at the highest levels. Right is now wrong and wrong is now right. It's painful to witness the downslide of our values and of our country. 

And when I thought things couldn't be darker, people who have been suffering with Covid-19 watched as their government leaders and fellow citizens politicized the disease, even its treatments. And I had to ask, why? I have no clear answer. 

I've been distressed over the state of our world because of Covid-19 ... and now demonstrations and rioting is in our streets. The demonstrations began in unity and with good intent. A terrible wrong had been done to one of our citizens. But as is often the case there are those who will take advantage of what they see as an opportunity. 

I have been sick at heart as I watch the destruction of our cities. And the foolish self-centered volleys of flaming darts that our leaders cast back and forth. The malevolence only deepens. 

Aren't we better than this?

We can be.

In my daily reading I landed on Psalm 43, which feels perfect for this time. I'd like to share these comforting words with you. I've replaced all the personal references to a collective term. It says this,

O God, take up our cause! Defend us against these ungodly people. Rescue us from these unjust liars. For you are God, our only safe haven. Why have you tossed us aside? Why must we wander around in darkness oppressed by our enemies? Send out your light and your truth; let them guide us. Let them lead us to your holy mountain, to the place where you live. There we will go to the altar of God, to God - the source of all our joy. We will praise you with our harp O God, our God! Why are we discouraged? Why so sad? We will put our hope in God! We will praise him again - our Savior and our God!

We are not alone in this evil world. We have the almighty God with us. Even in the midst of heartache and sorrow we can be comforted and know joy. God's Word tells us we will have tribulation, that there will be dark days, but we are not to be disheartened. We can walk in the light of the Lord.

Keep praying. Keep rejoicing. The Great I Am sees it all. And He loves you.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Corona Tweny?

How many of you have heard of the Corona Twenty? I've heard a lot of people lamenting over the weight they've gained since hunkering down to "stay safe". The term became known as the Corona Twenty.

So, why would someone decide to go on a diet in the midst of one of the most stressful periods of history this American has experienced? Not sure. Maybe it is about control. Everything feels out of control these days, but I can control what I put in my  mouth.

Those of you who have followed me through the years have likely seen that I struggle with my weight. It's been a long-time issue, made worse after I had an accident back in 1991 that was followed by disability and a more sedentary lifestyle. 

Oh, how I miss being active. I was one of those who loved to work outdoors. And to stay busy. With all my hurting parts it's just not fun or even doable these days. The pounds kept adding up. and then one day I said, "No More! I want a life!"

I'm back to walking. I don't walk far, usually only twenty to thirty minutes, but I do it every day. And now with the warmer weather I can add swimming, which will be easier on my body.

I've tried a lot of weight loss plans through the years, some with moderate success. This is not an ad for any one program. I'm just trying something new and so far it's helping. I'm on the Noom program, where the bottom line is mostly about sensible, healthy eating while watching intake and taking a closer look at why we eat what we eat. So far I'm down twelve pounds. And that's good, but I have a long way to go.

My weight loss has been slow, but the really cool thing I've been noticing is I'm beginning to change my mind (gradually) about food. I'm feeling less addicted and more inclined to care about what food accomplishes for me. And though some days I feel discouraged, I'm not inclined to give up ... and I've been at this for nine weeks. In recent years I haven't hung on this long without feeling outdone by my stubborn metabolism. 

One of the interesting aspects of the Noom plan is the idea of overcoming a habit, fear or something that has defeated you in the past by exposing yourself to it and overcoming. For instance I HATE WEIGHING MYSELF! Ugh. Really hate it. On the Noom plan I weigh every day. I still don't like it but it doesn't have the power it once did and I see a day when I'm not bothered about it at all. A coming attraction. :-) One other hint about overcoming that has been helpful is walking the store aisles that tempts me most ... and not giving in to the temptation. It is empowering. I know that to those of you who don't struggle with weight this may sound weird, but maybe you can apply it to something you DO struggle with. I'd love to hear your feedback on that.

I will keep you updated on my progress and let you know some of the new stuff I'm learning. And I hope that one day I will have a before and after photo to share with you.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Thursday, May 21, 2020

Tea & Books

I wanted to get this post up right away. WhiteFire Publishing along with Roseanna White is hosting an online tea party and book discussion on Saturday, June 7th. 

You're invited!

This is something new for me, but it sounds like a lot of fun. I'll be able to see you and you'll be able to see me while we talk about books, life and my new novel, One Hundred Valleys. 

I've posted the link below so you can get all the details. 

I hope to see you there.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Summer #TeaPartyBookClub reservations are open! Join me and
Author Bonnie Leon
in June, Author SE Clancy in July for a COFFEE party, or come chat Barclay with me in August! ❤ ☕️roseannamwhite.com/tea-party-book-club/

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Monday, May 11, 2020


While chatting with a friend of mine recently I mentioned that I'd become a grazer. Actually grazing isn't something new for me. I've been grazing through my kitchen for years. 

Hah! Actually, not funny.

I never thought of grazing in the context of my time with the Lord. During this quieter, though stressful era of Covid-19, I've been grazing with God. We've been hanging out together a lot.

Many times I've heard people say they are unable to find time to spend with God. Their lives are hectic and too busy. Like them, I've told myself that even though I know it's not all together true. There is always time for what we value most.

I still relish deep study, the meat and potatoes of my spiritual walk. However, sometimes long periods of study feel like a hurdle, and I'm convinced I don't have the time or stamina so I don't try. On those kinds of days it's time to find another tactic. 

During these Covid days I'm often distracted - therefore the grazing, taking smaller bites of time with The Father. And just as sheep graze in the fields with a shepherd watching over them, I find the Lord always present, close to me and ready for a chat.

He is with me during my daily devotional time and while I watch podcasts created by those who share their spiritual insights. I even find the Lord in notes sent to me by friends. He responds to my whispered prayers. He accompanies me on my strolls through my timbered neighborhood. And He always waits for me in His Word. He is never not with me.

I am comforted by the words in Psalm 139 that say, "I can never escape from your spirit! I can never get away from your presence!"

There are so many ways to find time for God. In the very beginning of time man and woman walked with God and talked with God in the garden. What a blessed time that must have been. 

Though we live in a sin-stained world God still wants to spend time with us. He doesn't say we must cut out an hour or more from each day to study and pray, but He does say we are to seek Him and spend time with Him. We can do that. 

Like a shepherd who watches over his sheep God is always watching over us and when we reach out, there He will be. And if we wander off we can be assured He will find us.

Grace and peace to you from God,