Karen's Devotions

This is a selected collection of my devotions e-published on Daily Devotions, Journey Christian Church, Irvine, California; George Bragg, Editor. To join the mailing list, email George, gbragg@cox.net.

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As a 25+ year homeschooling vet, post-cancer, math prof, mother of five, master's track and field athlete, and certificated private pilot, I have a lot to share about what God has done in my life. In 2000 I began writing devotions as something to try when it seemed like accoustic pianists were becoming an endangered species at church. I have since found great blessings from writing and sharing. God is good.

Thursday, March 19, 2009


First Published February 16, 2009

Romans 11:33
“Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!
How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!”

When I was little, my brother J.E. got a toy sheriff’s set. It included a sheriff’s star, a cowboy hat, a holster with a cap shooter, and a set of handcuffs. He liked to play the part of sheriff “arresting” my sisters and me, putting us in the cuffs and sending us to “jail.” On one particular day, my sister L.E. was still in the handcuffs and the key was lost. We yanked and pulled, but her wrists just got red and swollen. We tried to free her by using water and lotion to lubricate her wrists, but we were unsuccessful. Now her wrists were red swollen and slimy. Everyone was in a panic, but no one had the solution. We finally had to go into the house to tell Mom what happened.

She didn’t seem surprised by the predicament. (Maybe it was because she and her brothers and sister experienced similar adventures!) When asked what she was going to do, my mother replied, “Nothing, just wait.” My sister was in tears and my brother was outraged. Mom was going to do nothing and just allow L.E. to suffer in the handcuffs? She helped L.E. with her bath and eating dinner, but did nothing about the handcuffs.

It took us all a long time to fall asleep. Strange scenarios kept floating in my young mind. Would Dad have to use a saw to set L.E. free? Would she have to go to the hospital? Would she have to live forever with handcuffs on her wrists? There were so many questions with not enough answers. Or at least there were none that satisfied my brother, sister, and me.

We have all experienced moments when either by our own missteps or by chance we are in a tough predicament. We try all the conventional ways of solving our problem, while God is patiently trying to tell us to wait for his timing and his plan. In the mean time it’s really hard to understand God’s logic. So we tend to dismiss him from our decision-making. But as our verse says, we could be (and often are) clueless about God’s logic concerning solutions to our problems.

I sure didn’t understand my mother’s logic. When I awoke the next morning L.E. was also awake and the handcuffs were off, but she didn’t know how that came to be. J.E. was the one to ask Mom. “I waited until your sister was asleep and I guided her hand out.” Wow. That was simple, yet the three of us couldn’t have done it by ourselves.

That’s what we need to learn from the Bible. We will not understand God’s ways, but because his knowledge and wisdom is infinite, we can trust that he will guide us through our trials.
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Thank you Lord God for your scriptures that assure me that your ways are unfathomable. Your wisdom and knowledge surpasses my limited mind, thus I may put my trust in you to guide me through the tough times and predicaments in my life. Calm me Lord, that I may welcome your guidance and solution. Amen.

Copyright Karen Vaughn, 2009

In Pursuit of Prosperity

First Published January 26, 2009

Nearly every fall for the past 29 years I have had first year college students who encounter the shock of being on their own. They must make crucial decisions and reap the results. Unfortunately many struggle to remain on a straight path of a prosperous future. The following “P’s” of Proverbial Wisdom are from a list I put on my office door.

23:17b-18. …But Always be zealous for the fear of the Lord. There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off.

23:1-3. When you sit to dine with a ruler, note well what is before you…Do not crave his delicacies, for that food is deceptive.

23:4. Do not wear yourself out to get rich; have the wisdom to show restraint.
21:5 The plans of the diligent lead surely to advantage, but everyone who is hasty comes surely to poverty.

23:23 Buy the truth and do not sell it; get wisdom, discipline and understanding.

23:12. Apply your heart to instruction and your ears to words of knowledge.

13:4 The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the soul of the diligent is made fat.

28:20 A faithful man will abound with blessings, but he who makes haste to be rich will not go unpunished.

Copyright Karen Vaughn, 2009