By His Grace and In His Word Ministries has moved!

You should be automatically redirected in 6 seconds. If not, visit
and update your bookmarks.


At the Well- Change, I DO NOT like it!!

At the Well Blog Button

Change. I don't like it! Of course, if you were to ask anyone who frequents my home if I liked change, they would say yes. I'm always changing something in my house. Rearranging furniture, moving pictures, swapping bedrooms, etc. But, these are the kinds of changes that I can control; changes that only happen if I decide for them to happen.

Join me today over At the Well as we reflect on God's goodness and faithfulness.



Be Sure to Check This Out!

Here are a couple of things I'd like to encourage you to check out. It might not be for you per say, but I am MOST positive there is someone in your life you can pass this info on to.

She Seeks

First, She Seeks. This is a site for young professionals, college students, or 18-29 year old women journeying through life and trying to figure it out. She Seeks is a division of Proverbs 31 Ministries and is coordinated by Lisa Whittle. Lisa has a great team of ladies supporting her and helping her out with this ministry. And, yes, I am bragging when I say that two of them are my friends!! Nicki Koziarz and Sarah Martin are precious ladies seeking to honor the Lord in all they do.

Secondly, I am so exicted to be involved with this next venture and want to personally invite each of you to join us at The Live, Laugh, Love Women's Retreat 2010. The team of women behind this retreat is made up of women who have a passion to serve the Lord and encourage women in their walk with Him.

When: January 30-31, 2010- Saturday 1pm- Sunday 12 pm

Where: Fort Caswell, NC- near Oak Island, NC

Who should come: YOU!! Every woman- married, single, starting over... wherever you are at in life! Sunday school classes, Women's Bible Study groups, Church groups, Girlfriends, Anyone!!!

Cost: Early bird registration is $65 before November 31, 2009. December 1, 2009 the price goes to $70.

**$20 non-refundable deposit due with registration.

For more info or to register click HERE.

I hope you will take some time and check out these two opportunities. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me. Have a happy day!!



Family Vacation- Florida 2009

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Family Vacation- Florida

Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox slideshow



And they said dinosaurs were extinct- HA!

I rise fairly early in the morning. Usually my first stop, after the potty of course (smile), is to the freezer to get out the coffee so that I can prepare of nice pot of freshly brewed organic coffee to get me going for the day.

Never in my wildest dreams did I expect to find this little guy standing guard over the goods.

I guess Mr. T-Rex needs coffee to get going in the mornings too. Who knew!?!



One Last Hoorah!

We are off to the great state of Florida! Our plan is to visit with family, make a trip to the beach, and hopefully do a little relaxing before we start school next week. We covet your prayers as we travel.

See you when we get back!!



What do YOU think?

What an exciting day for By His Grace Ministry! I'm going to share with you why I'm so excited, but first I want to ask you a few questions?

Have you ever heard of Heart of the Matter Online?

What about Christian Women Online's (CWO) Internet Cafe?

Been involved in A Woman Inspired Online Conference?

Spent any time reading At the Well, Exemplify Online, or Blissfully Blended?

Do you know what all these ministry sites have in common? If you guessed Amy Bayliss, then you are exactly right. God has placed in Amy's heart, a passion for women and online ministry. And, let me tell you, she IS living out her calling. Not only is Amy involved in all of the above online ministries, some of which she is co-owner and co-founder, but she also has a personal ministry site, is a wife, a momma of three, a speaker, a writer, and oh my word, I do believe I could go on and on! :) But, most importantly she is a woman who loves Jesus and is seeking to honor Him in all she does.

My first encounter with Amy was about two years ago. I had just begun blogging and had ABSOLUTELY no idea what I was doing. Through God's providence, He lead me to Amy and she designed my first blog site. Over the past two years, she has helped me, not only with blogging, but she's also answered homeschool questions and given me lots of encouragement in my personal walk with the Lord. She has been an inspiration to me and given much godly counsel. I consider Amy a friend, even though we have never met face-to-face; that 's the beauty of online ministry.

A few weeks ago, Amy asked me if she could do a review of By His Grace Online Ministry. To say that I was flattered is an understatement. I was floored, honored, and scared to death. Questions flooded my mind, "What would she think?" "What would she say?" "Would she like By His Grace or would she think it was horrible?" I said yes and today, you can find Amy's review of By His Grace Online Ministry here.

Our goal here at By His Grace is to offer our readers, and that means YOU, a place they can call home; a place where they feel safe, loved, and cherished. We want this to be a place you can come to and put down the masks we, as women often wear to impress others, and just be you. Our desire is that while you are here, you experience the grace, love, mercy, and forgiveness which flows from the Father's hand. We pray that while here you are encouraged and challenged to continue walking in the path God has set before you.

Amy's review of By His Grace and given us some new ideas as to how we can better minister to you. I am so thankful and honored she asked me to do this.

We welcome your input as to how we can better minister to YOU. Feel free to share any ideas or thoughts you have that could better the ministry of By His Grace. We love you all and praise God for the opportunity to serve you!



Connecting the Dots of Our Lives

Yesterday, I began sharing a few tidbits from our family's most recent adventure- Our 1st Ever Family Cultural Awareness Day. I promised to come back today and share with you more of our adventure.

If you'll remember, hubby had given us all an assignment before we entered the museum. The assignment was to report back to everyone our most favorite piece of art and give an explanation as to why we chose that particular piece as a favorite.

As we walked around the museum, there were many sculptures, paintings, and artifacts that caught my attention. But, it wasn't until we walked into a little side room that I became captivated by what hung on the wall.

Two large pieces of art hung side-by-side. At first glance, one's eyes might be inclined to quickly skim right over these paintings. One painting was of a young girl sitting by a fireplace; the other of a young woman on a ship. Nothing too earth shattering, right? There were no abstract images or bright, vivid colors to draw me in. Just two paintings, by two different artists, of two different women hung before me.

What caught my attention were the words of John Baldessari which hung to the left of the paintings.

I read those words and then once again stood before the two paintings of the two different women which were painted by two different artists and my mind became racing with thoughts of what might have been their life story.

Could this young girl have just swept her living room floor for the last time as her family packed their belongings preparing to go to a new land?

Or could she have been left all alone in her home because the violence of war had taken from her her precious father and mother?

Could this young woman have been a lonesome passenger on an old rickety ship sailing across the ocean to a land she did not know?

Or could she have been taken captive by pirates and been unable to escape the oppression of her captors?

Could the connection between these two paintings which were painted by two different artists of two different women be two hearts utterly shattered by the woes of the world in which they lived?

I found myself chasing story line after story line as I my eyes jumped from left to right and then right to left. Some many words, some many stories, so many connections could be made now that I had stopped; now that I had looked beyond the surface of what hung before me.

We each have been given a story. All of our stories contain different plots, different settings, different characters, and different outcomes. But, if we peer beyond the surface- beyond the cute clothes, the fancy jewelry, the make-up, and the stylish hair- there are connections that bind us together.

The paintings of our lives, although different, were all painted by the same Artist.

The paintings of our lives, although different, display very detailed strokes of an Artist who had a very specific design in mind when He picked up His brush to create the masterpiece.

The paintings of our lives, although different, can be connected if we look beyond the surface and read the story found between the lines.

Connections can only be made when we are willing to stop; when we are willing to look beyond what is easily seen; and when we are willing to take the time to connect the dots of our lives.

"You are members of God's very own family,
citizens of God's country, and you belong
in God's household with every other Christian."
Ephesians 2:19b, LB
"I mean that I want us to help
each other with the faith we
have. Your faith will help me,
and my faith will help you."
Romans 1:12, NCV

Spend some time today connecting your life with the lives of those around you.



Our 1st Ever Family Cultural Awareness Day

Friday night my husband began getting the kiddos pumped up for a big adventure we were to have on Saturday. He's notorious for always having something up his sleeve, remember God's Water Park? The kids went to bed with visions of sugar plums dancing in their heads. Ok, not really, but they were excited; each of them with their own ideas of what the next days adventure would be.

After tucking everyone in their beds I sat down beside hubs at the table and asked, "So, what is your plan for tomorrow?"

"Cultural Awareness Day," was his reply.


"Tomorrow will be our first ever Family Cultural Awareness Day. We are going to the art museum."

Well, alrighty then. The art museum it is.

We got up Saturday morning, did a few chores around the house, packed a lunch, and headed off the the NC Museum of Art. Our oldest daughter was very excited; art is her thing. Our son...not so much. His reply after finding out where we were going was, "I hate art."

Hubby's goal in this "cultural awareness day" was to expose the kids to life outside of dirt, bugs, lizards, and Saturday morning cartoons. And, to get them to think outside the box and look at things, at life, at people from a different perspective.

As we pulled into the parking lot of the museum, we were all given specific instructions.

"Now listen. This is what we're going to do. When we get back in the car this afternoon, you have to tell us what your favorite piece of art was and why," hubs said.

"Ok," we replied and off we went.

I wasn't able to take too many pictures inside the museum, but I did get a few I'll share with you. We spent about an hour and a half walking around, looking and talking about the pieces of art from various time periods in history- European art, Egyptian art, American art, and a little Judaic art lined the walls of the museum. Some of the pieces were easily recognizable, others made you stop and say, "hummm."

When we got back in the car, everyone reported on their favorite pieces of art. The princess momma enjoyed the portrait of Emily and the various painting of Jesus. I was not surprised to hear Mighty Warrior's favorite piece was the headless sculpture. The littlest princess enjoyed the glass elevator. And, hubby's favorite was... well, I'll just quote him:

"The art piece of the doctors was of particular interest to me for several reasons. It displayed the harsh realities of war which was represented by the blood running down the piece. The older American doctor and the 2 Asian doctors made me think of WWII and the blood shed between the USA and Japan and the loses that we both suffered. The fruit and birds to me represented the hope of recovery both physically from the wounds of War, and also the wounds we suffered mentally and spiritually. It could also be a representation of the collaborative work that must take place on both sides to begin the healing process. In the piece both sets of doctors were working to heal the patient. What was the patient? Could be society, economy, stigmatisms, stereotypes who knows."

That, my friends, is my goofy, brillant, out-of-the-box husband. I love him so!!!

After the museum, we found a park where we were able to have a little picnic and just enjoy being together.

Once again, hubs pulled it off- a great adventure that cost us less than $10. Good job, babe!!!

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Cultural Awareness Day
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox slideshow

Oh, and my favorite piece? Come back tomorrow and I'll share with you the two pieces that spoke volumes to me.



Fixing Our Eyes on Jesus

I love those times in the study of God's Word when He has me looking at several verses and then ties them all together in a lesson tailor made for me. As I untied the ribbon on His most recent gift and pulled the treasure out of it's box I found His revelation to me to be a lesson on fixing my eyes on Jesus and not on the world around me.

"For the devious are an abomination to the LORD; but He is intimate with the
Proverbs 3:32, NASB

According to Webster's Dictionary, devious means wandering, moving without a fixed course, deviating from a right, accepted, or common course, not straightforward.

I feel certain all of us could attest to having been devious at one time or another. I know there have been times in my life when I've hiked up my cute jeans, ditched the snazzy shoes, and set out on my own course. Like a pinball machine, I would bounce from one thing to the next, never walking in an orderly fashion or staying in one location- be it physically, mentally, or emotionally- for very long . Because I was so busy bouncing from here to there instead purposefully placing one foot in front of the other and because my eyes were wandering to and fro, there was not even a hint of intimacy between the Lord and me.

God chooses to reveal Himself to those who are upright; to those who are walking down the straight and narrow path He has set before them. For the one who has fixed her eyes on Jesus and is purposefully putting one foot in front of the other, she is the one who will experience true intimacy with her God. She is the one who with whom God is going to reveal His secret and the one with whom He will make covenant (Psalm 25:14).

As I read and meditated on these verses my thoughts were drawn back to this past weekend and the Deeper Still conference. Kay Arthur taught from the book of Hebrews and over and over again she encouraged us to fix our eyes upon Jesus. Why? Because when our eyes are fixed on Jesus, we are able to experience true intimacy with Him. Because when our eyes are fixed on Jesus, our relationship with Him will go beyond surface and be rooted deeper and deeper in the truth and knowledge of who He is and who He desires us to be.

I remember teaching my students several years ago that in order for us to have a personal, intimate, growing relationship with the Lord we would have to put on our spiritual blinders. Let me explain to you what I mean. When horses and plows were used for gardening, farmers would place on the head of the animal a harness that had blinders positioned around the eye area. These blinders were meant to keep the animal's eyes focused on the row directly in front of him. If there were no blinders the chances of the horse becoming distracted and walking in a crooked line were highly probable. The blinders were an absolute must if the farmer were to get any work done.

You and I must put on our spiritual blinders so that we are able to walk the straight and narrow and experience intimacy with our Savior. Proverbs 4:25-27 tells us we are to let our eyes look directly ahead and let our gaze be fixed straight in front of us. We are to watch the path of our feet so that all our ways will be established. We are not to turn to the right nor to the left, but we are to continue to walk straight ahead, turning our foot from evil.
The blinders on the horses harness enabled him to focus on the row he was plowing; our spiritual blinders enable us to focus our attention on Jesus Christ Himself.

"Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us
also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us and
let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, FIXING OUR EYES ON
JESUS, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured
the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne
of God." Hebrews 12:1-2, NASB (emphasis added)

It is so easy for us to focus our attention on the happenings of the world around us. It is easy to get caught up in the mundane of day to day living. Often times it is much easier to rely on those tangible persons in our lives instead of the God we cannot see. Circumstances, sometimes beyond our control, sometimes self-inflicted, can very easily draw our attention away from the Lord if we do not have our spiritual blinders on.

The Lord so beautifully tied together these verses in Proverbs 3 & 4 with the truths of Hebrews 12. He taught me the importance of walking in such a manner where I am purposefully placing one foot in front of the other all the while fixing my eyes upon the One who is the author (the Originator) and the perfecter (the Finisher) of my faith.



Exemplify Online- August 2009 Issue

In a 2008 article published by Focus on the Family ( they reported, “by the age of 24, 89 percent of males and 92 percent of females have had intercourse.” The article goes on to say that “in the U.S. alone, there are 19 million new cases of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) reported each year, with half of these cases occurring among 15-24-year-olds.”

I can’t say that I am totally surprised by these numbers. What does take me aback though is the high percentage of young women who are sexually active by the time they turn 24. An alarming majority of brides lay beside their husbands on their wedding night having not saved the gift of sexual purity for this special time.

Why? Why is there such a high percentage of young women giving themselves over to men who are not their spouses? What can we as mothers, leaders, and mentors do to encourage the young women around us to keep themselves pure until their wedding days?

To read the rest of this article on Holiness Before Marriage, check out this month's issue of Exemplify Online. (article can be found on page 22)



I Stand Amazed in His Presence

The Lord never ceases to amaze me. In spite of me, He continues to include me in the big picture of life.

Despite the fact that I don't always honor my husband and sometimes might raise my voice at my kids...

Despite the fact that I quite often pass by the hurting, broken-hearted, and lonely...

Despite the fact that I don't often make the wisest of decisions...

Despite the fact that I clinch my fists at Him when I don't get my way and spit fire when I'm mad...

Despite the fact that I often times shut down when I'm hurting and try to carry the weight of the world on my shoulders...

Despite the fact that I, at times, neglect my time with Him because, in my mind, there is something better I could be doing with my time...

Despite all of this, what astounds me so is this- and it is a fact, a truth, an absolute- when the Lord looks at me, He doesn't see what I am, He sees what He has created me to be.

To Him, every mistake is a learning experience; every hurt is a wound He can heal...

To Him, every person in my life is a relationship in which He can be the foundation...

To Him, every fist raised is His time to grab hold of me and pull me close to His side...

To Him, in spite of the many weaknesses of my flesh, He sees the blood of His Son, Jesus Christ, covering all of my imperfections and continues to bless my life beyond my wildest dreams.

A few months back I received an invitation to attend a Precept Ministry Leaders Gathering. Although I have done several of Kay Arthur's studies, I am not an "official" PMI leader. I was taken aback as I read the invitation and wasn't sure how or why I had received it. Knowing that for little ole' me, this was a once in a lifetime opportunity, I accepted the invitation.

Still unsure why I received the invite, I walked into Green Street Baptist Church last Thursday night, heart pounding, palms sweating, trying my best to hold back the tears. I sat on the second pew of one of the most beautiful sanctuaries I have seen in a long time. Stained-glass images lined the walls; the cross hung above the baptistery inviting all who entered to experience the refreshing Living Waters of Life.

Mrs. Kay brought us a message, a challenge, a call to arms from Ezekiel 22. She encouraged us to dig deeper into the Word of God, to stand firm upon His Truth, and to proclaim this Truth to the lost and dying world. I'm still processing all she shared from this passage of Scripture. As the Lord leads, I will share with you what He is teaching me.

After her message, I spent a few minutes talking with her and her assistant, still unsure why I was even here. But, my uncertainty slowly began to fade away as God revealed His plan for my being in that place at that time. We wrapped up our conversation, I hugged them both, thanked them for their dedication to the Lord, and told them I would be in touch soon.

I walked out of Green Street Baptist Church the same way I walked in- heart pounding, palms sweating, trying my best to hold back the tears. Once again the Lord left me in a state of astonishment at what He desires to do in and through my life in spite of me. I have NO idea what the future holds, but I know the One who holds my future in the palms of His hands. He has begun something new in my life and I am so excited to see where this road will lead.

"For I am about to do something new.
See, I have already begun!
Do you not see it?
I will make a pathway through the wilderness.
I will create rivers in the dry wasteland."
Isaiah 43:19, NLT