Years ago I purchased this sign at a Cracker Barrel store, and subsequently placed it next to the kitchen door leading to the garage as a daily reminder of some of our family values. I think it is not an exaggeration to write that our family has walked past this sign thousands of times over quite a number of years.

Initially, this prompt was quite effective. Our household of four mostly grown up people was a buzz of activity. We all repeatedly traversed the pathway in and out of that door. And during those few remaining parenting years, the sentiments were referenced and heeded regularly.

So, why did I take a picture of this sign today?

Well a funny thing happened as I assumed my new self-appointed role as daily dog feeding monitor. All three bowls of dog food went down and I took my neutral, but watchful position amongst the pack. Once lunch was served each dog moved to their respective bowl and began to eat. As long as I stay present, the dogs will eat without incident.

Thus, once a day I am stationed in this neutral location, and just today I found myself staring at this sign on the wall. Then I realized I was reading the words. Smiling, I remembered why I purchased the sign in the first place.

Suddenly, I was reminded of our goal to live these values out within and outside our family circle. We don’t get it right all the time, but we value these qualities. And we need to be reminded of all we value.

The act of remembering is something very important to God. As the best good Father, He has always given His children values on which to build their lives. Beyond simply stating His commandments through Moses, however, God Himself wrote them on stone tablets. Furthermore, God charged His children with posting these commandments in their homes and regularly teaching them to their children.

It’s tempting to think that these scriptures are out-dated and irrelevant. Yet all these years later people are still marking significant words on wood, t-shirts, and even skin. It’s normal, we realize, to want to remember words and sentiments that have impacted us in deep ways.

I still believe this sign serves a positive purpose in our home and for our family. The words displayed have not grown old or irrelevant. They accurately describe many of our family goals and values.

But just like the people of old, it’s not enough to read or hear the words once. Our time and effort are required to remind ourselves, to teach them and to put these values into action on a daily basis.

And again just like the people of old, sometimes we need a reason to stop, be still, look around and really see the truths we value. I’m grateful for this recent opportunity to be reminded of these wise words. I’m grateful too that I had this opportunity to be still and look around and see what I had been ignoring for quite some time.

Eyes on Jesus… you’re shining,


Scripture references:

Deuteronomy 4, 5 & 6

Exodus 32:16

Joshua 1:7-9

1 Timothy 4:11-13

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Lessons of a Good Father

Now what I am commanding you today is not too difficult for you or beyond your reach.  It is not up in heaven so that you have to ask, “Who will ascend into heaven to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?”  Nor is it beyond the sea, so that you have to ask, “Who will cross the sea to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?”  No, the word is very near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart so you may obey it.  Deuteronomy 30:11-14

In Deuteronomy 30:15, God sets out very simplistic choices for His people.  He sets before us a choice of life and prosperity or death and destruction.  Immediately, He tells us how to have the best choice of the two.  Then, like a good Father, very clearly and concisely, tells us the consequences of turning away in disobedience.choose life

Today I am reminded of a story our late pastor often told about disciplining his children in love.  He wanted to teach them to stay out of the street.  So, he set up a boundary for his children and told them not to cross it.  Repeatedly, he told his children the truth that they could get hit by a car possibly resulting in death.  His children continued to disregard the boundary, which frustrated and saddened their father.

Finally, a brilliant idea came to mind.  He would show them the consequences of disobedience by running into the street.  He took a watermelon outside, and when he glimpsed a car coming down the street, he rolled the watermelon across the boundary line and in front of the car.  As you can imagine the car squashed the watermelon.  The children wide-eyed and a bit overwhelmed caught the lesson.  Our pastor gathered his children in his arms and spoke to them of his love for them and his desire that they not become like the watermelon.

Our God is good and in His Fatherly love for us He makes His desire for us very clear.  And yet He lets us choose – life or death, blessing or curses.  Let’s choose to love the LORD, our God and obey Him.  Let’s choose life!

Buddy Hoffman

This story is shared in remembrance of my late pastor – Buddy Hoffman.  I am grateful he answered God’s call to preach.  I’m even more grateful he shared stories that live on as they are passed along like the one I’ve shared here today.  We’ll all catch up soon for a cup of coffee and stroll down the streets of New Jerusalem with Jesus leading the tour this time!




I have the honor and privilege of writing weekly devotionals for Daughter of Delight on Instagram.  This post with some slight variation was first posted as an original devotional for Daughter of Delight on Instagram – 2/3/2018.

I invite you to please take a moment to visit @daughterofdelight on Instagram.  I feel certain you’ll be encouraged and refreshed!

Eyes on Jesus… you’re shining!