Sanctuary Ridge Faith Stories

When God Speaks

A Litte Background

I am notorious for buying books and then never having time to read them. I’m sure none of you do that, but it is a thing that happens to me often. I love to read and have stacks of books that I WILL get to one day!

Many years ago, I headed up the children’s Christmas play at the church we attended. The first year I was the only person willing to do it but I enjoyed it so much that I ended up leading it for the next 2 years as well. It was a lot of work but it was so rewarding! I would begin searching in July for the perfect little Christmas program for the kids. It had to have a great theme, some humor and of course really great music. By August I had the program in hand and was listening to the music whenever I was in the car by myself so that I would know every word before I started working with the kids. The most difficult part of the entire project was always deciding who would play which role in the play. It was inevitable that some child was going to be hurt that they didn’t get the role they wanted. I dreaded the day of announcing the roles of the play.

Second Guessing

One year in particular, I had a very difficult time deciding which play to do. I ended up choosing a play that included a theme of “giving” for the kids involved. The plan was for them to collect shoes to donate to the homeless shelters in town. I prepared big boxes to place in the church foyer for the donations. The play incorporated a beautiful story about showing God’s love to others by meeting their basic needs. Even after I decided, I had doubts about whether I chose the right program for our kids. Maybe it was too serious? Here we were focusing on a topic most kids are oblivious to. It seemed that things were not going as I had planned and I really began to doubt myself.

I presented the play to the kids in late August that year. We listened to the CD in kids church together and then began the list of who was interested in which role in the play. By the end of October, we had assigned roles and started practicing each week. By the end of November, the kids had memorized most of their lines but something still just didn’t seem to click.

Long Lost Book

Around this time, I began decorating my home for Christmas- bringing out all the boxes of Christmas decorations and family momento’s of Christmas pasts. As I rummaged through one of the boxes, I came across a book that I had bought 7 years before to read with my kids through the Advent season. It was one of those books that I never even cracked open. I decided to sit down and read the first story in the book immediately.

“Chicken Soup for the Soul- Christmas Version”

All week I had been doubting the kids play at church: did I choose the wrong one??? The kids just weren’t even TRYING to learn the songs this year. Most of the kids knew the speaking parts but the songs just weren’t clicking for some reason.

But then, the first story I read in the book that night was about a man witnessing some local teenagers on a side walk in town. The teens were riding their skateboards on the sidewalk when they stopped to talk to a homeless man on the street. As the man watched, the teens began removing their shoes, letting a homeless man try on their sneakers. The boys then gave him the socks off their feet and the shoes that fit him best. On a cold night. The teen Left the place barefoot- riding a skateboard!

And our play that year was about meeting the basic needs of people to show God’s love by donating SHOES!!!

What a powerful confirmation that was for me. Seven years before, I had bought a book that God would use to quell my doubts. So I knew it would all be ok. I was doing what God wanted me to do. I sat, reading that story with tears streaming down my face. It IS the right play for the kids! I love God’s sense of humor! HE”S got this- I just need to do my part and leave the rest up to HIM!

When God Speaks

Sometimes when God speaks, it’s just a gentle reminder to calm our minds that want to question everything. That’s what I think of when I hear people talk about a “still, small voice”. It’s a confirmation that can come in so many different ways.

  • Psalms 29:4 (NIV)The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is majestic.
  • Job 11:7 (NIV)“Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty?
  • Colossians 1:10 (NIV)so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God,

My prayer for you today is that you will ask God to help you with those things you are worrying about. And then, keep your heart and mind open for that “still, small voice”, the voice of the One who loves you more than you can imagine!

Sanctuary Ridge Faith Stories

The Call- Part II

View from the Plane over the coast of Belize

Preparing for the Mission

As the time approached to leave on our first mission trip, we spent a lot of time in prayer. Noah and I were scheduled to leave with a group of 18 prayer warriors from our church. The plan was to fly to Belize City with a short layover in Texas. Jamey would be flying down to Belize with the next group which was the 1st skilled labor team. Another skilled labor team would arrive in Belize as we were heading home. It was a lot of people to coordinate!

Time to Go!

When we landed in Texas, most of the group went to eat together. I let Noah choose where we would eat since he wouldn’t have as many choices for the next couple of weeks. He chose Subway, so we ordered and sat down to enjoy a fresh sandwich. After lunch, we went to wait for our flight. From the moment we began preparing for this trip, there was a song that resonated with me: Psalm 23 by People & Songs. As we waited, I sat listening to this song on repeat.

I suddenly heard my name called over the speaker, asking Monica Scott to come to the desk. I was informed by the lady that they needed to see a copy of “The Letter” from Noah’s father giving him permission to travel with me. I had no idea what she was talking about!

The “Letter”

Only minutes before boarding was to begin I am told that I need a letter from Jamey stating that he gives permission for Noah to travel to Belize with me. And it has to be notarized. They won’t let us into the country without it, so they won’t let us board the plane. Noah and I are in Houston, Texas and Jamey is in Ooltewah, Tennessee.

I call Jamey to let him know what is going on. He prepares a letter and sets off to find someone to notarize and fax it to the airline. Meanwhile, the rest of the team has arrived at the gate to board the awaiting plane. I inform my pastor of the “letter” issue. He decides to stay with Noah and I until we get this problem sorted out. The rest of the team agrees to continue with boarding the plane. They join together to pray for a quick resolution.

Jamey has tried several places before finding a notary. Time is ticking away…

As I am waiting at the ticket counter, I overhear a young woman speaking to the flight attendant. Her travel partner has been delayed and she wants to change her flight to a later time. Because her bags are already on board, our international flight will now be delayed until they can remove her luggage.

Jamey has now faxed the notarized letter to the airline office at the Houston airport. I quickly informed the attendant at the ticket counter. Then she tells us the office is at the other end of the airport. We need her to go run the fax down so we can board the plane before it takes off. She is reluctant to go check, but with some persuasion from my pastor, she finally agrees.

Minute by minute, we are waiting for her return and praying that the plane will wait for us. It seems like an eternity. She finally arrives with the letter in hand. She stamps it, hands it over to us and we quickly board the plane. Cheers erupt as we walk onto the plane with our team! God answered our prayers indeed!

Guaranteed Opposition

Opposition comes in many ways. Only through experience do we learn that being called to do something will bring guaranteed opposition. I believed it was God’s will for us to go on this mission trip. And when all these “road blocks” came our way, I knew without a doubt I was doing the will of God. The enemy tried to keep us from going, but God made a way for us!

It was only the beginning of a trip filled with moments that would change our lives forever.

  • 1 Corinthians 2:9 (NIV) However, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived”— the things God has prepared for those who love him—
  • Isaiah 41:10 (NLT) Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.

Dream Central, Belize

Dream Central, Willows Bank, Belize 2019

If you would like to read more about the mission of Dream Central or would like to make a donation, visit Projects are ongoing in every location so be sure to check it out at!

Sanctuary Ridge Faith Stories

The Struggle of Fear

Broken Beauty

The Struggle

Over the past few months, I have watched as friends have gone through some devastating life events. Although they weren’t necessarily my pain, I feel such a burden for each of my dear friends who have been suffering a loss. Some of these have me facing a battle I have faced many, many times. Part of me wants to hide away somewhere and just deal with it privately, but that part of me is losing today. There is a freedom that happens when we expose the raw feelings instead of hiding them away in shame. Satan loses his power over us when we step into the light by exposing the struggle.

What is it? What is the struggle?

The struggle for me is FEAR.

Fear that I’m not enough. And as many times as I have laid down that fear, I keep picking it back up. In my mind I can see the image of a suitcase. Inside it are some very heavy objects that no one should be carrying around. I know I shouldn’t pick it up but I reach for it instinctively, as if I’m protecting myself from something. Trying to gain control over a world that seems out of control. Fear is one of those things that is just too heavy to carry around every day.

Definition of fear (Merriam-Webster)

1aan unpleasant often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger

b(1)an instance of this emotion

(2)a state marked by this emotion

2anxious concern SOLICITUDE

3profound reverence and awe especially toward God

4: reason for alarm DANGER

The Bible

It’s time to dig deep into God’s Word again friends!

What does God’s Word say about “Fear”?

  • Psalm 23:4 (ESV)Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
  • Deuteronomy 31:6 (ESV)Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”
  • Isaiah 41:10 (ESV)fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
  • Psalm 34:4 (ESV) I sought the Lord, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears.

Again and again, God says He is with us. He goes with us. He will not forsake us. Our health may leave us, our friends may leave us, our family may leave us, but God NEVER will. And these scriptures show something so significant too! He is not ASKING us to not fear. He is COMMANDING us to not fear.

Fear is one of those emotions that grips you. It holds on. Usually it keeps you from moving forward, or even making any move at all. That is not the kind of life God wants for us friends. So even if the world seems out of control, even if you have to walk through some devastating things in life, He is with you.

Time to Lay it ALL Down

Of course I heard a song today that really moved me. The video link is below, but I wanted to share the lyrics to “Crowns” by Sons The Band:

No greater love, I’ve ever known

This humble gift from heaven’s throne

I’m overcome By the favor You have shown

The price You paid for a sinner’s toll

The blood You gave, for the world to know

I’m overcome By the mercy You have shown

Like a faithful friend, You came rushing in

Took my wild heart and set it free

I’ll give every breath, till I come to rest

In the grace of eternity

I lay down my crowns at Your feet

From my first breath You saw my heart

Called my name set me apart

I’m overjoyed

I am free and fully known

Like a faithful friend, You came rushing in

Took my wild heart and set it free

I’ll give every breath, till I come to rest

In the grace of eternity

I lay down my crowns at Your feet

You give my spirit freedom

I give You all my praise

Don’t need another reason

To lay it all down, lay it all down

Right now is my surrender

Here in this holy place

Don’t need another reason

I lay it all down, lay it all down

AGAIN. Here I am again, laying it down. The fear of failing. The fear of not being enough. The fear of my marriage failing, of my family relationships failing, of my children not loving me anymore, of being alone. All the irrational fears that grip me, I lay them all down. I’ll cling to Him instead of fear.

And with my hands lifted, I’ll find my freedom in God alone.

Sanctuary Ridge Faith Stories

Answering the Call- Part I

A Phone Call

One summer afternoon in 2018 I received a phone call. I had no idea how that one phone call would change everything…

My pastor’s wife Kaye was calling me, wondering if I would be interested in going on a mission trip to teach some young women to decorate cakes. Years ago, Kaye and Terry Harris began ministering in other countries. This led to a ministry called “Dream Central” where the goal is sharing the love of God by empowering people to dream big dreams. From prison ministry to orphans, the heart of it all is helping people break negative cycles through the love of God. The work being done through Dream Central is international. If you want to read more about the Dream Central ministry click

I was asked to go on the mission trip with the prayer team, but my mission was to teach the daughters of a local pastor to decorate cakes because they had a dream of opening a bakery. When Kaye told me more about the trip, we realized that my husband Jamey could come on the second week of the three weeks mission to work on the building project that was underway. I wrote some of the information down as we talked over the phone and promised to let her know if we could go as soon as possible. I needed to pray about it and talk to my husband about the possibility of going.

Dream Central, Willows Bank, Belize

Count Us In!

After praying about it and talking with Jamey, we decided that the answer was a resounding “YES”! We had 3 months to pray, plan and prepare. I began gathering cake decorating tools, books and supplies to take with me. Jamey began working with Pastor Harris to determine what he would be working on for the second week. We were excited and nervous too because we had never done anything like this before.


There is so much history to the ministry in Belize! I’m hoping that one day my friend Gary will write a book about how he answered the “call” to begin God’s work there. It is such an amazing testimony! I can’t begin to tell you all the trips that have been made over the past 30 years. All the people who answered the “call” and said yes. All the time sacrificed, tallent and money invested in the work that has been done there. I want to tell you all about it but that isn’t my story to tell. What I CAN tell you is this:

  1. God’s plans never fail. I am continually in awe of this. We are witnessing this firsthand as we continue to submit to His will. Romans 12:2 (NLT)Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
  2. You don’t have to be special to answer the “call”, you just have to be willing. I felt so unqualified, so unworthy, it would have been easy to say no. God will qualify you for what He is calling you to do. He will take what you have to give and make it more than enough. 2 Corinthians 3:5 (NLT)It is not that we think we are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God.
  3. Fear will rob you of your future if you let it. Don’t let fear of failure or fear of the unknown rob you of the future God is setting before you! I used to be terrified to travel to new places. It’s true! But God set me free from that fear when I stepped out in faith. Now I love to travel because I get to see the resounding beauty God has created in the world around us.
    2 Timothy 1:7 (NLT)
    For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. Philippians 4:6 (NLT)Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.Psalms 34:4 (NLT)I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears.

Here and Now

I’m not sure why (yet) God has asked me to share this with you. I’ve tried many, many times to write about the work God is doing in Belize. It is so difficult to put onto paper the work that God is doing because it is a spiritual move. There is so much being accomplished in the physical too- so much “work” being accomplished. But the spiritual move of God is something that is so hard to put into words. All I know is that God wants me to begin sharing this now. Here I am at 3 A.M. writing this!

So for whoever this is for, even if it is just one person, God is not finished with you yet. HE is still calling you. HE still sees potential in you. You haven’t missed your opportunity to do what He called you to do so many years ago. Your hesitation has not hindered His plan. You have been on standby but it’s time for you to step out in faith. All you need to do is answer the “Call” and say YES. I will go. I will give. I will do whatever it is YOU want me to do Lord.

A New Song

There are two older songs that continue to come to mind as I write this: “Lead me Lord, I will Follow” and “If You Can Use Anything Lord, You can Use Me”. As I searched YouTube for one of those to share, I found this song to share instead. I’m so thankful “I am my Father’s dream”!

To be continued….

Sanctuary Ridge Faith Stories

Keeping Guard


Sometimes we need to slow down and just observe what is around us to hear God speaking.

Contemplating the awesome wonder of God’s creation this afternoon. Listening to nature praise Him for this beautiful day. I wonder how loud and glorious the praise was when Noah’s family and the animals finally left the Ark?!!! I am constantly reminded of His goodness as I observe this world God created. As I stared into the waters I saw that the bass had spawned! A million tiny fish swimming under their mother. With the Father fish- a nice size bass keeping guard at a distance. He swims back and forth. He chases any danger away. Isn’t that how God is with us- we may not always see Him but he is there guarding His children.

On the Battle Front

Even as I was surrounded that day with peaceful sights and sounds, I realized that I was on the battle front. There is a constant war going on, a war for our attention, for our affection, for our time, for our souls and for our family. That is why we must put on the armor of God every day. Armor protects us, but only if we wear it. It does no good if it is hanging in the closet or if we are driving around town with it in the trunk of our vehicle.

Here’s what God’s word says about it:

The Armor of God (Ephesians 6)

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. 11Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.  13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist on the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. 14 Stand firm therefore, having belted your waist with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having strapped on your feet the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.  17 And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18  With every prayer and request, pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be alert with all perseverance and every request for all the saints, 19 and pray in my behalf, that speech may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in proclaiming it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.

Notice that in each verse the armor is God’s. It is not even our own, but it is HIS! In verse ten “be strong in the Lord” and “in the power of His might”. Everything we need to fight the battles that we face, it all comes from HIM. We can’t do any of it on our own, yet HE has provided for us everything that is necessary to fight the battles before us!

What I See…

We may not always see the battles around us. Sometimes we are sleeping. We are not on guard. We miss it. It feels like it may be too late. Maybe the enemy has already taken some territory and you feel like you aren’t brave enough or strong enough to take it back, but HE is. God is enough! He is on your side- on the winning side! Don’t ever give up! I love this translation from The Message Bible:

  • Deuteronomy 20:1 (MSG)When you go to war against your enemy and see horses and chariots and soldiers far outnumbering you, do not recoil in fear of them; God, your God, who brought you up out of Egypt is with you. When the battle is about to begin, let the priest come forward and speak to the troops. He’ll say, “Attention, Israel. In a few minutes you’re going to do battle with your enemies. Don’t waver in resolve. Don’t fear. Don’t hesitate. Don’t panic. God, your God, is right there with you, fighting with you against your enemies, fighting to win.”

My prayer for you today is that you will be on guard. So many times I miss what is happening to those I love, even to myself, because I am not on guard. I become distracted by the business of life. May God help us to see what is around us, to put on the full Armor of God and take back ALL of the territory that the enemy has tried to steal. I pray that every thought that it’s too late for you will be taken captive. I pray that every doubt will vanish, that every fear will bow in the name of Jesus. I pray that you will be encouraged today as you stand guard over your family. May the peace of God be with you.

Sanctuary Ridge Faith Stories

Giving it All

All About Perspective

Making Sacrifices

In January of each year, instead of making resolutions that I will surely break, I choose to fast and pray about something specific. Sometimes I feel led to fast for certain days or even weeks at a time. This year, I felt impressed to fast something I love for the entire year. I know that may seem extreme, but I am reminded DAILY of what I have given up and WHY I felt impressed to give it up every single day for a whole year. It reminds me to pray and seek God even more. A fast is not about making a deal with God, it’s about making a sacrifice TO Him and drawing near to Him.

So What is a Sacrifice?

When you think about the word “sacrifice”, do you think of stories from the Old Testament? One that stands out to me is when Abraham was commanded to take his only son, Isaac, and offer him as a sacrifice. This is his only son and they waited a really long time to have him in their lives. But, Abraham obeyed and God stepped in and provided a lamb for the sacrifice when Abraham was obedient.

Definition of sacrifice from Merriam-webster

1: an act of offering to a deity something precious especially  the killing of a victim on an altar

2something offered in sacrifice

3adestruction or surrender of something for the sake of something else

b: something given up or lost the sacrifices made by parents

What are you willing to sacrifice?

God has really been dealing with me about false gods lately. We all have them. Just look around your home and think of something there that you can’t do without. Where does your “treasure” lie? Is it your family? Your time? Your money? Maybe it’s that car you always wanted. Or that big investment. I recently re-read a book “Gods at War” by Kyle Idleman (you can find it here and it has me thinking a lot about what I have placed the most importance on in my life.

I’m not saying that if you shouldn’t care about anything except God, I’m just asking you to ponder on this question:

Are you willing to do ANYTHING for God? What are you willing to sacrifice?

Giving it all

In Matthew 19 we read…

The Rich Young Ruler

16Just then someone came up and asked him, “Teacher, what good must I do to have eternal life?” 

17  “Why do you ask me about what is good?”   he said to him. “There is only one who is good.  If you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.”

18“Which ones?” he asked him.

Jesus answered: Do not murder; do not commit adultery; do not steal; do not bear false witness;  19honor your father and your mother; and love your neighbor as yourself.

20“I have kept all these,” the young man told him. “What do I still lack?”

21  “If you want to be perfect,”   Jesus said to him, “go, sell your belongings and give to the poor,  and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

22 When the young man heard that, he went away grieving, because he had many possessions.

See, the Rich Young Ruler was willing to follow all the “Rules” but he still felt there was something missing, something that was keeping him from eternal life. The truth is, anything we put before or above God is holding us back from our full potential. It keeps us from a closer walk with Him.

My prayer for you is that you will surrender fully to God. I’ve been guilty of placing my kids, my husband, my family, even my own selfish desires above the one and only true God. The truth is, it is a daily sacrifice to lay down the need to control situations, the desires of my own heart and surrender it all to God. But see, no one loves us like He does. So no one can love my kids better than He can. He is so, so good. He’s the same yesterday, today and forever.

Sanctuary Ridge Faith Stories


Full House!

What to do when the House is Full?

Every year I have to participate in training for the classes I lead. It’s the same training every year and this will be my 5th year to attend the training! My class of 8th graders study Logic, Math, Exposition, Science, Latin, and History. The students study a Mock Trial, complete college level studies that integrate apologetics and even write their own short stories! Talk about an intimidating list of subjects! I am thankful that we are required to participate- I always feel equipped and ready to teach my students when we finish training every summer. Last summer, when I went to the training classes I saw familiar faces- friends and colleagues that I have worked with for a few years now. When I walked into the large gathering place, there was no room for me at their table. My heart sank. Have you ever walked into a gathering and there was no room for you? I immediately felt isolated and out of place. It certainly was not intentional, but it made me feel a little sad.

I wanted to sit at their table.

I wanted to be accepted.

I wanted to be part of the group.

Instead, I found myself in a room full of people, sitting at a table all alone.


We call our homeschool style “Classical” and our days that we meet are called “Community”. Community is defined as 1) a unified body of individuals, 2) a social state or condition or 3) society at large. When I think about community, I think of our homeschool group. I think of our church, and I think of the small town I live in. A community is not just people in the same area! It is: relationships, family, support, accountability, encouragement, communications, interdependence and so much more! It is a vital part of human life!

True Friends

It wasn’t long before my friends invited me to join them at their already overcrowded table. But it was long enough for God to stir this thought in my heart about belonging and I declined my friends invitation to join their table. I had come into the room looking for my group, for my “people”, but now I just wanted to sit and think about what God was trying to tell me in that moment.


Don’t we all want to be accepted, to be part of something? To feel like we belong?

When I searched the Bible, I was amazed at how many verses there are with “belong” in them!

  • Psalms 24:1 (NCV)The earth belongs to the Lord, and everything in it— the world and all its people.
  • Psalms 30:4 (NCV)Sing praises to the Lord, you who belong to him; praise his holy name.
  • Psalms 85:10 (NCV)Love and truth belong to God’s people; goodness and peace will be theirs.
  • 1 Chronicles 29:11 (NCV)Lord, you are great and powerful. You have glory, victory, and honor. Everything in heaven and on earth belongs to you. The kingdom belongs to you, Lord; you are the ruler over everything.
  • Matthew 19:14 (NCV)but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me. Don’t stop them, because the kingdom of heaven belongs to people who are like these children.”

There were so many verses! And I was so encouraged by what I read- we don’t belong to this world. We don’t belong to each other. We don’t even belong to a family or even to a church. We belong to HIM! We belong to God! The King of Kings and Lord of Lord’s says we belong to Him! And He has a seat at His table for you friend!

What does it all mean?

I think what God was trying to show me in all of this is how important it is for us to include others. Be the one who reaches out to the girl sitting by herself, or the new person. Speak to the person ringing up your purchase at the store or your server at the restaurant. We carry the love of God with us everywhere we go, not just inside the walls of the church. I pray that I do that well. I pray that God keeps reminding me that so many people feel alone, left out, or rejected and it is our responsibility to reach out to others to share God’s love.

My prayer for you today, dear friend, is that if this spoke to your heart- if you’ve ever felt like there wasn’t room for you at the table, that you will see that God has a place for you at HIS table. You are so loved and He has everything you need! I pray that HIS ‘River of Love’ will flow through us all so that ALL may know Him! If you want to know more about Jesus, leave a comment and I will be happy to message you privately!

Sanctuary Ridge Adventures in Camping · Sanctuary Ridge Adventures in Farming · Sanctuary Ridge Faith Stories · Sanctuary Ridge Family Recipes

Big News from the Farm!

Just a dream…

Sanctuary Ridge Farm has reminded me of so many childhood dreams. I’ve always loved the outdoors, animals, working hard, writing and cooking. As I work, write, or cook, I truly hope that I am bringing glory to God. He has given me joy in the most mundane and joy in the most glorious moments too. Isn’t it amazing how HE can do that!

Psalms 118:24 NCV This is the day that the LORD has made. Let us rejoice and be glad today!


So many times, the most precious moments we share are as a family gathered together for a meal. I love sharing food with friends, whether it’s a simple loaf of bread or teaching someone to decorate a cake. Naturally, I love to share recipes too and it seemed fitting to share my recipes on our Sanctuary Ridge Farm blog. Last year I began considering publishing a cookbook, but does anyone even use cookbooks anymore? With all the online sources for recipes, is it even necessary? It certainly seemed like a foolish idea.

I love to look at recipes online- you should see my Pinterest! And I actually try to make everything I save! When I find something I like I will print it- that’s actually why I added printable recipe pages on my blog. If I end up reworking the recipe, I write it out in a little notebook. You should see all my scraps of paper with recipes scribbled down! Sometimes I share a picture of something I made for dinner and when a friend asks for the recipe I have to actually type it out because it’s just embarrassing to send a picture of my scribbled recipe!

The more I thought about it, the more I thought I would really like to publish a recipe book. So, I began researching how to publish one and while I was sick a few weeks ago, I actually completed it months ahead of my personal goal!

Heartwarming Recipes- Sanctuary Ridge Farm

I am so excited to present a collection of 115 of my favorite family recipes, including Breakfast, Soups, Salads, Vegetables, Main Dishes, Desserts and more! The books are being processed at my publisher. Expected arrival date by March 31, 2022! If you would like to purchase one, I am taking pre-orders. There is a shipping option ($23) or if you are local you may choose the local pickup ($18) and I will email you a time/place to pick up locally.

To order with shipping click here

To order for local pickup/ no shipping click here

Any recipes previously published on this blog will still be available. I will continue cooking and sharing recipes online, but this collection of recipes are my tried and true, go-to recipes that I wanted to preserve in a traditional cookbook format. I appreciate all the encouragement as I finalized the cookbook proof and submitted it for publication! Ya’ll are truly the best!

© Copyright 2020– or current year, The Sanctuary Ridge. Unattributed use of this material is strictly prohibited. Reposting and links may be used, provided that credit is given to Sanctuary Ridge with  active link and direction to this original post.

Sanctuary Ridge Faith Stories

Confession Time

A sweet gift from my student!


Lately God has been dealing with me about my attitude.

I am going through the dreaded menopause and my emotions are so raw. My family is constantly telling me how I am always mad. I keep saying the wrong things. I try to be funny but end up hurting my husbands feelings. I am constantly being criticized and it is just awful. I find myself building walls and keeping to myself more and more just to avoid saying the wrong thing or coming across mad. It makes me feel so lonely and sad. It’s a vicious cycle that I am desperately trying to find my way out of.


Last week my husband worked on screening in our back porch. He had the worst attitude about it. He was grumpy. It was obvious that he did not want to do this project. He resented doing it. He wanted to be out hunting or on the tractor or putting fences around the property. Anything but screening in the porch. His bad attitude made me realize that I have a confession to make.

I am doing all the things to take care of my family: cooking, cleaning, laundry, stocking the pantry, teaching Noah, helping with projects around the farm and absolutely anything else I am asked to do.

I do all these things because I love my family.

But I have not been doing them in Love.

I have been doing all the things begrudgingly. Grumbling under my breath while I go pick something up at the store. Throwing dinner together with a bad attitude, “Why do I always have to cook” or “Why can’t someone else do this” or “I just want to go out to dinner”. The laundry- who even cares if there are wrinkles? No one even notices that the clothes are clean!

I have let the mundane chores become a bitter place for my bad attitude to dwell.

The Plank

As I watched my husband work so hard on screening in the porch, I wanted to tell him how ridiculous his behavior was but there was this still, small voice that had me look at my own attitude instead. The Lord reminded me of a scripture that deals with confronting another person.

Here’s what the Bible says about his bad attitude in Matthew 7:

3 And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye?  4 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove the speck from your eye’; and look, a plank is in your own eye? 5 Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.


I confess that one hurt a little! And that reminds me of my favorite coffee mug…


Every morning I drink coffee from this mug that one of my precious students gave me last year. It’s pale pink inside and has 1 Corinthians 16:14 written on both sides.

1 Corinthians 16:14 “Let all that you do be done in Love”.

It’s such a simple reminder!

So HOW do I fix my attitude? Drinking more coffee might help, but that alone will not work! Trust me, I’ve tried.

I began by confessing in prayer: “Father God, I am sorry for my bad attitude. Somewhere along the way I have lost my joy in these mundane tasks and stopped doing them IN LOVE. Please help me to do these things IN LOVE. I know that I am not only doing them for my family, but I’m doing them for YOU as an act of worship. I’m thankful for this family you blessed me with. I’m thankful for the washer, dryer, running water, refrigerator, pantry, stove to cook on, dishwasher, vacuum, broom, mop, beds to make, clothes to wash, and people to love. I am blessed beyond measure! I will praise you as I prepare our meals, as I clean our home, as I shop for food, and do all the tasks you have set before me. Please remove any bitterness, any anger or resentment that has rooted itself in my mind or heart. Amen.”

Next, I apologized to my husband and my kids. Just a simple apology and acknowledgement can go a long way in making things right again. It will take effort to purposefully do things in love again, and I am sure that I will mess up along the way, but I am going to try my best and let God do the rest!


It’s so easy to get burned out in this life. Our routines become roots of bitterness instead of themes of thankfulness.

My prayer for you today is that somehow my confession will help you get the speck out of your own eye. Perhaps your “speck” is not a bad attitude. Perhaps it’s jealousy or anger. Perhaps it’s unforgiveness or sin. Whatever it may be, there is One who loves you and want’s you to confess, apologize and give it over to Him. More coffee won’t fix it. More business won’t fix it. Only God can fix these broken places in our lives, and only if we let Him.

I am reminded of this song by Steven Curtis Chapman I heard on the radio a few years ago. It was so relevant to me then, with the craziness of 3 children in the house. It really helped me change my view of motherhood and how I can worship the Lord in all that I do. Here’s the cheesy video:

© Copyright 2020– or current year, Sanctuary Ridge. Unattributed use of this material is strictly prohibited. Reposting and links may be used, provided that credit is given to Sanctuary Ridge with active link and direction to this original post.

Sanctuary Ridge Faith Stories

This Is Not My Home…

Someplace “Comfortable”

Have you ever longed to be somewhere else?

There are certainly situations we face in life that make us feel uncomfortable! Perhaps a dinner party where you feel so out of place that you want to hide in the bathroom until it’s over? I’ve certainly been to a few of those!

Or maybe you’ve been some place so wonderful that you never want to leave? A wonderful family beach vacation where life seems so perfect you wish time could just stand still?

There’s No Place Like Home!

Some of you don’t know me. And most of you don’t know that I have moved 22 times! That’s almost every two years for my entire life! It’s no wonder that I never feel like I’m “Home” unless I’m with my family. “Home” to me is not a destination; it’s not a house. “Home” to me is wherever my family is. But there is truly more to this feeling than just moving so many times.

See, this world is not my “Home”. I long for another home, another place that I have never been.

A “Home Sweet Home” like we have never known before, one with:

No more pain,

No more sorrow,

No more fear,

No disease,

No tears.

Sounds pretty amazing, huh?

A little research:

In my search for exactly what the Bible says about our heavenly home, I came across the Message translation and wanted to share it with you. If you haven’t checked it out yet, is a wonderful source that makes it so easy to compare different translations!


1-5 For instance, we know that when these bodies of ours are taken down like tents and folded away, they will be replaced by resurrection bodies in heaven—God-made, not handmade—and we’ll never have to relocate our “tents” again. Sometimes we can hardly wait to move—and so we cry out in frustration. Compared to what’s coming, living conditions around here seem like a stopover in an unfurnished shack, and we’re tired of it! We’ve been given a glimpse of the real thing, our true home, our resurrection bodies! The Spirit of God whets our appetite by giving us a taste of what’s ahead. He puts a little of heaven in our hearts so that we’ll never settle for less. 6-8 That’s why we live with such good cheer. You won’t see us drooping our heads or dragging our feet! Cramped conditions here don’t get us down. They only remind us of the spacious living conditions ahead. It’s what we trust in but don’t yet see that keeps us going. Do you suppose a few ruts in the road or rocks in the path are going to stop us? When the time comes, we’ll be plenty ready to exchange exile for homecoming. 9-10 But neither exile nor homecoming is the main thing. Cheerfully pleasing God is the main thing, and that’s what we aim to do, regardless of our conditions. Sooner or later we’ll all have to face God, regardless of our conditions. We will appear before Christ and take what’s coming to us as a result of our actions, either good or bad. 11-14 That keeps us vigilant, you can be sure. It’s no light thing to know that we’ll all one day stand in that place of Judgment. That’s why we work urgently with everyone we meet to get them ready to face God. God alone knows how well we do this, but I hope you realize how much and deeply we care.

Home Sweet Home

I can not wait to go home! What a glorious time it is going to be!

My prayer for you today is that God would awaken in you a deep longing to be Home with Him! There is nothing like His love and the peace that He gives in this life so I can only imagine what it will be to stand face to face with Him one day!

© Copyright 2020– or current year, Sanctuary Ridge. Unattributed use of this material is strictly prohibited. Reposting and links may be used, provided that credit is given to Sanctuary Ridge with active link and direction to this original post.