Do Knot Give Up


Happy New Year, friends! I can’t believe we’re already halfway through January. Are you staying warm? It’s been chilly, even in Florida.

I hope you & yours had a peaceful Christmas with family & friends.

In late December, I pondered adopting a ‘word’ for 2018. Usually I pray and pay close attention to scripture and specific verses the Lord brings to mind. One of my favorite memories from Christmas, 2017 ties in (literally) to the verse I focused on.

  • Romans 12:12: rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer ———> Persevere in faith 

A few weeks before Christmas, we braved a trip through Wal-Mart on a quick-as-can-be errand. My younger son has always loved stuffed animals, cozy blankets, and soft things. He’s older now and mostly graduated from stuffed animals (other than the Minecraft plush toys smothering his bed).

But that afternoon, something caught Chase’s eye in the aisle at Wal-Mart.

A huge, soft red knot.

FullSizeRenderThe adult head-sized fabric knot was unique and fun. The boys tossed a blue one back and forth across the aisle, and Chase inquired about getting a red knot.

I said no, Christmas is right around the corner, and we continued with our day. But I filed it away in my brain as a Christmas present possibility.

Flash forward to two days before Christmas. One more quick errand to Wal-Mart for extra tape and stocking stuffers. On my way around the store, I notice a low shelf with a few fabric knots left. (This was in a different store.)

One red and one black knot, perfect! Their school colors.

Chase likes red and Cole likes black. I purchased them and headed home. My germaphobe side cringed at the possibility of dozens of people and kids touching, licking, dropping, sneezing, kicking, and drooling on the soft knots.

I waited until the boys were in bed then shoved them in the washer. 45 minutes later, I transferred them to the dryer, expecting to wake up to dry knots on Christmas Eve.

FullSizeRender (004)

Knot so much.

The formidable knots knocked the dryer door open two minutes into the cycle. Notice the blue tape on the left? Hubby used painter’s tape to keep the door shut.

NOW they would dry.

Wouldn’t they?

Throughout Christmas Eve day, I started the dryer at least a dozen more times. Those knots WOULD. NOT. DRY!

By the time Christmas Eve rolled around, and we’d partaken of our annual homemade-hot-chocolate-doused-with-marshmallows and watched our Christmas Eve movie (The Grinch), they still hadn’t dried all the way.

But I kept checking and drying and checking and drying, and around midnight the knots were finally (barely) dry enough.

I couldn’t help thinking of Romans 12:12.



Are you tired of persevering?

I’m with you, friend. That “I might as well give up” feeling? Or the “why is this such a long, confusing path” cry? I’ve felt it and fought it off lately.

Do knot give up!

Remember: God IS faithful. Persevere, friend!

“Trust in the Lord with your heart, and klean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”

Gladiator Days

“Why don’t you get in line?” I motioned to my sons above the throng of voices, excited shouts, and laughter filling the warehouse-sized-indoor-bouncy-playground.

The Gladiator Pit snagged 10-year-old Chase’s attention, with its four pedestals of foam and bulky weapons for knocking opponents into the squishy cubes littering the pit’s base.


The current “ruler” of the Gladiator Pit stood proudly in the center, one victory from gaining the golden belt after nine rounds of knocking competitors off.

Chase drank it all in with unbounded eagerness. Though not as competitive as his older brother, he has always loved wrestling-type activities. His smile broadened as the teenaged employee handed him a foam stick, then he crawled across the huge cubes to balance on the orange pedestal.

Cole followed with a frog-legged leap, concentration tightening his features. He stands a few inches taller than Chase now, but Chase is solid and strong, and I was curious to see the outcome.

The four boys faced each other, gripping their long blue foam sticks. When the young employee blew his whistle, the Gladiator fight erupted.

Single-minded and still smiling, Chase leapt off his pedestal, launching his entire body at the current champion across from him. Down the poor boy went, deep into the cubes. Chase regained his balance and pivoted to womp the boy going after Cole.

His momentum knocked that boy and Cole from their pedestals so quickly my sister, nephew, and I burst out laughing at Chase’s victorious grin and the speed at which the action had unfolded.


I grinned back at my excited younger son and his infectious joy. And it reminded me of one of my life verses, Acts 20:24.

“But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.”

A couple of rounds later, Cole strategized and easily took his brother and two other boys down–but still, Chase wore a big smile.

In the pursuit of our God-given dreams, we will attain victory–and we will get knocked down. How can we truly experience all that with joy? All those ups and downs?

In Acts chapter twenty, Paul calls the elders of the church of Ephesus to him (v 17). He warns and encourages them of what’s to come in the early church. “So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified” (32).

Then, Paul closes with what I consider the key to maintaining our joy in any kind of circumstances…whether we’re getting knocked down or holding our hands high in victory. “And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive’” (35).

We all have Gladiator days–the days when we’re knocked flat on our face, or when we stand tall in victory. But I promise, the most joy you’ll receive on this journey toward God’s heart and your dreams is in giving of yourself and serving others.