Barefoot Devotions

Blooming In Off Seasons

This winter season has been unusual to say the least.  I have heard stories of flowers blooming this month because of the much warmer temperatures that are not expected in a cold January.   It’s supposed to be snowing, frigid cold, and signs of plant life are supposed to be anything but blooming.  Expectations for winter seasons are already set for us.  When things happen out of season, we tend to get confused, scratch our head, and ask, “why?” We often get stuck on thinking it’s not supposed to be this way.

Perhaps there is a lesson we can learn from the blooming flower in the off season.  Naturally, we think the flowers are confused because this is happening against the season.  The flowers did not question the season they were in, but they bloomed as they were created to.  They know the conditions needed to produce blooms and they spring forth into action.

Like the flower blooming in the off season, we may find ourselves in seasons we do not understand but we must find a way to spring forth into action.

The Word of Truth is needed in a believer’s life to produce fruitfulness, steadfastness, and new life.   When we are in relationship with God by engaging in His word, prayer, fasting, and worship we are then in right balance with the creator.  When the word is implanted in us, it is deeply woven in every part of us.   We won’t be able to stop the growth and we will want to live a life pure and undefiled.  This kind of life leads us to be doers and hearers of The Word as James instructs Christians to be. 

James teaches us that every believer will experience trials in life, but trials are a blessing.  They are opportunities for growth and to see the Father of Lights who created the light that rule the days and seasons.  His nature is unchanging, and His promises are secure.  Through creation, we can see exactly how faithful and unchanging God is.   Therefore, it is so important as believers to be deeply rooted in Christ so that when these off seasons do come, we will not be swayed but we will spring into action as we were created to.  Off seasons are opportunities to truly learn where our faith stands when resources have dried up, time is against us, and there isn’t any light at the end of the tunnel.   These seasons are where we meet opposition, lack, frustration, and maybe even wonder if we had faith at all?

But we were created for this.

It’s the place where we find out who we truly are, what our character is made of, and the condition of our heart.  In this place, we see God, place our trust in Him, and surrender. 

We must find a way to stay focused on God and our relationship with Him in every season of our journey so that when these off seasons do come, we will not find ourselves stuck or wavering.

 God is at work in all of our seasons, spiritual growth is a process and growth happens most in the seasons that seem out of balance. 

He is there and we can trust that He has a great purpose.

Qualities Needed In Off Seasons

Be swift to hear

Slow to speak

Slow to wrath

Be a doer of The Word

Read James 1 here:

With all of my love and encouragement,

Hannah B.

Barefoot Devotions

Light Bulb Moments

Have you ever felt like you are down here on Earth wandering around with a blindfold on wondering what in the world you were doing? I have experienced this many times, even recently. I almost felt like I was lost in the darkness. Am I even on the path that was designed specifically for me? I can see how easy it is to become discouraged in the Christian walk and give up. When we reach this point, it’s important to stop and take a look at what is happening in our day to day lives and remember the truth we find in God’s Word.

I have been praying for the next adventure God has laid on my heart for this ministry. For about 500 times, I have asked God a variety of questions, “Are you sure this is it?”, “What am I doing?”, “What am I supposed to be doing that I am not doing?” I began to feel like I was aimlessly wondering in my day to day life. As I was waiting for confirmation and the next step to be revealed, the confusion began to set in with doubt starting to bloom. As I look back, I knew what God laid on my heart but I expected an entire download of His outline or maybe even a direct answer.

Now, I realize that is not always how God works especially in this season of my life. I know God is teaching me to trust in His timing while refining my soul and character to be able to keep up with His plan for my life. He is more into the process of walking out the work He has planned for our lives. It’s very gentle, loving, and kind that He changes us and our situations in a process. The process allows Him to be able to empty the world out of us so that our soul and flesh will be ready to act together when the Holy Spirit guides us to our next step.

I am reminded of the story of Noah. He gave Noah instructions on how to build the ark and then instructed him when it was time to go. Clearly, Noah had enough faith and believed in God to do as he was told even when he didn’t have the complete plan. He understood that God had made a promise for him and his family and had a purpose.

I am the type that will run toward the end goal without experiencing the process and completely miss the joy that can be found in every moment in between. The joy when we learn something new through a trial, when we are stretched outside of our comfort zone, and we step out in faith and overcome the fear that holds us back. Although growth stretches us and it can be uncomfortable, it is necessary so that we can be molded into the person God has called us to be even when we feel that we aren’t sure of the way He would have us go. Though we are being refined, we can be assured that God is with us through the process. He always provides light bulb moments on our path and when we continue to diligently seek Him and His will for our life, we will see them. If we are in tuned to the Holy Spirit, these light bulb moments will appear. We will see them when we hear someone speaks, a verse that pops up, or little reassurances that we know only God could do.

I’ve stopped rushing the process and I am starting to enjoy the little things in each day because it’s where you will find bulbs of joy, reassurance, peace, and guidance. They keep you going on the path we are called to walk and for that, I am so thankful that God would place them there just for me! Don’t forget to look for them!

Prayerfully yours,

Hannah Boyd

The How To Series

How To Find Your Inner Mary

The story of Mary and Martha is one that many women (and men) can relate to. I know I can. It’s something I have often struggled with and still do. My mind always seems to be thinking of all the endless house cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping and all the other tasks that need to be completed before the day is up.

It’s endless. You may get everything done for the today and you can finally sit down and enjoy a clean house but how long is it going to last? I know between my kids and my dog, it’s about 90 seconds. Then I am on repeat and throw my arms up and ask myself why I even bother. You find that you’re exhausted and any ounce of joy you had has vanished.

There is always something to do but what if we can make these tasks feel less like a burdened chore? What if we can have joy and peace throughout our day?

I know you are wondering, how do we do we find the balance between our inner Mary and Martha? Let’s take a look at the story found in Luke 10:38-42:

As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him.  She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things,  but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” 

Does this sound like you at times? Have you ever just wanted your family to help you with the dirty dishes in the sink or the piles of dirty clothes? I know that the endless housework, grocery shopping, taking kids to practice and games in addition to your 40 hour work week is so consuming that we often forget to take care of our self. We get too busy running from place to place, thing to thing and checking off each item on our to do list that we forget to breathe and stop and smell the roses.  We end up feeling overwhelmed, frazzled, and upset and when it’s all said and done we’ve been robbed of our joy.

Jesus himself said, “You are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed – or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better and, it will not be taken from her.”

So, what did Mary do? She stopped. She put aside all distractions even if the tasks at hand were not completed. She sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. Was Mary upset and worried? No, she chose what was best and allowed time to sit, be still, and listen to Jesus.

Have you ever noticed that when you do spend time with Jesus, reading your Bible and praying that the day just goes smoother? There may be an issue that arises but you are better equipped to handle what has been thrown your way and at the end of the day, everything sorts itself out with you worrying and fretting about it.

Jesus rewards us for being still and spending time with Him. He provides our hearts exactly what we need for the day ahead of us and allows us to smell the roses and taste His goodness. When you allow your inner Mary more time with the one who desires to spend time with you and wants what is best for you, He will give you joy and peace throughout your day.

The How To Steps:

  1. Set aside time in the morning to spend reading your Bible, praying, and talking to Jesus. It’s important to do this before your start your day doing anything else.
  2. Put aside any distractions.
  3. Read God’s word, Listen to Him and talk with Him.
  4. Be still and know that He is God.

When you allow your inner Mary more time with Jesus, our fleshly Martha ways become less frazzling and discouraging.  You are then refreshed and ready to conquer your day.

Even if it’s 15 minutes you will be refreshed and start growing in your relationship with Jesus. You will begin to see His goodness in your life, even the smallest details! You will desire more and more of Him and you will see that more joy has been placed in your heart.


Hannah B.