Experience Health & Joy

Weekly Blog

When Jesus Appears… In the Word!

Reading time: two minutes. Spiritual wellbeing is easier than easy.  Falling off a log requires climbing the log, but spiritual wellbeing is nothing more than welcoming the Lord Jesus and enjoying the blessing of His transforming work in my life.  The pressure to perform is off.  The drive to achieve has nothing to do with it. The spiritual life is like taking a vacation.  I love it when someone else is doing all the work, and I'm just enjoying.  When Jesus shows up, and He always shows up when we turn to His Word, wonderful things happen!  Here's a couple of the ways I'm learning to be more receptive in my spiritual life, my life with Jesus in His Word. Read More

My “Not A Pastor’s Wife” Pair of Shoes

Written by:  Dcs. Heidi Goehmann Reading Time:  3 minutes But now, O LORD, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand.     Isaiah 64:8 I have this pair of shoes.  I love them.  I was forced to buy them in one of the best bridesmaid purchases of all time.  The are hot pink leather and wonderful.  The heel is a good three inches.  They are freakishly comfortable for their height, and they are completely impractical.  The make me feel like a princess and a rock star all at the same time.  Every time I wear these shoes I get compliments without fail.  They are a seriously great pair of shoes. I wore these shoes out, for my husband's benefit, on our 15th wedding anniversary, just last May. The plan was dinner and jewelry.  This year demanded a mark of celebration in the form of refined diamonds - formed deep within the Earth, under heat and pressure.  A fair representation of God's work in us over the last few years.  We had made it fiercely through a difficult season, holding hands, and building one another up, by God's mercy and grace. We walked into the jewelry store.  We had a clear cut budget and a hip jewelry salesperson who understood our language...unique and understated, please.  Atypical.  Her name was Jaime and I'll never forget her.  She gave me one of the seemingly greatest compliments I've ever know. "You don't look like a pastor's wife!" Jaime's words set my heart on fire with an elated sense of worth and appreciation.  But why?  Why was this compliment so valuable to me?  It didn't even make sense.  I LOVE being a pastor's wife!  Why would I want someone to recognize that I don't look like one?!  Why does it matter so much to me? Read More

When Jesus Appears… In the Water!

Reading time: two minutes. Yes, yes, I know: God is hidden.  He's chosen not to appear in  theophanies before us and shout, "I am the Lord God!", but He's not that hidden.  I saw Him this morning. In this season of Epiphany we remember the work of God the Holy Spirit making Jesus known in word and in power.  God is indeed hidden from the view of our senses, but He is constantly making Himself known to those who have receive the gift of faith by the Spirit. Have you seen Jesus this morning?  Would you like to see Jesus today?  Do you NEED to see Jesus?  Take a look in the water.  He's looking right back at you. Read More

2016 St. Louis and Ft. Wayne Seminary Retreats

A few of our Seminary Couples with Dr. John Eckrich The 2016 Seminary Retreats are just around the corner!!  We have had tremendous response from our Seminarians and their spouses for both the St. Louis and Ft. Wayne Retreats!  There are still a few spots… Read More

A New Year, New Words

Written by:  Dcs. Heidi Goehmann Reading Time:  3 minutes Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who live it will eat its fruit. Proverbs 18:21 A New Year, New Words. There have been years I've done the New Year's Resolution thing, years I've made general goals, last year I claimed my word for the year.  It's all good stuff.  I have little opinions on whether any one method is better than another.  To each his own. But I do like to embrace anything that will help me drown the Old Adam.  The more creative the better, because that Old Adam, he just seems to have a really hard time going down. We all have some perpetual sins.  Sins that sit and stay awhile, and create crotchety old men inside of young women.  The Old Adam has his knuckles clenched around these sins, holding strong, screaming, "But I don't want to change!  It's so hard.  So...much...work...I like my sin.  It's cozy to some extent.  It's familiar." I remember Sharla Fritz writing in her book Divine Design about this concept, likening our Old Adam sins to cozy sweaters that are really quite itchy and uncomfortable when we stop and think about them. Words are like this for me.  Language.  I use so much of it, and sometimes, in all honesty, it's not pretty.  It's not cozy, it may be easy, but sometimes my words leave a wake of sorrow in their path.  Accusations, frustration and anger, Ill-conceived mediation in the wrong time and wrong place.  Words.  They can do so much good, but wow, can they burn. This year, I want new words.  While searching vaguely around the Internet last fall, I found an image that stated this simple concept... Make Each Word A Gift Read More

A Prayer for Financial Wellbeing

Praying time: less than three minutes. This will be the last in our series of prayers around the Lutheran Wellness Wheel.  God is so good.  Join me in thanks for His every blessing! The earth is Yours, O Lord.  I rejoice that You have awakened me to a new day and a new opportunity to walk through Your creation, knowing that I am a child of the Owner of all wealth, and an heir of treasure that will never perish, spoil or fade. "Providence" is such a beautiful word.  You, the Owner are also my Provider, and how generous You have been toward me and my family.  Just as wise parents know best the needs of their children, You also know best just what I need.  My wants often obscure richness of Your provision, so give me faith today to confess that my Father in heaven does indeed daily and richly bless me with all I need to support this body and life. Read More

A New Grace Place Wellness Online Bible Study!

Ministry wives and women in ministry…. Life is full of twists and turns, wrapped into seasons of joy,  sorrow,  struggle and growth.  Join us for encouragement, Biblical insight, connection, and time in the Word. This is a 9 week Bible study, beginning January 25th, 2016.  The study… Read More

A Prayer for Physical Wellbeing

Praying time: three minutes Response-ability is the gift from God to get up and be about my Father's business today.  Join me in celebrating the gift of this body and life! You truly are my Father, O God, for without you I would not have life.  I marvel at the wonder of this body You have entrusted to my care.  No galaxy above or creature of land, sea or air can match the wonder and intricacy of the life that pulses within me today, Your creative work.  You truly knit me together in my mother's womb, and I am fearfully and wonderfully made. You gave me feet, Lord, and I'm reminded by the aroma of how greatly I am in need of cleansing.  I thank You for the baptismal washing my Savior earned for me on the cross.  You also gave me hands, and I am called to offer the gifts of your grace to others in need of washing.  I have not taken up the basin and towel as I ought. Read More

Autism, #27 and Inviting Others In

"Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another."       Ephesians 4:25 Written by:  Dcs. Heidi Goehmann Reading Time:  3 minutes Session one of learn to play hockey ended last night.  Not a huge deal in most people's world, but in ours, it is. Zeke desperately wanted to play hockey.  He watched his big brother play his heart out and imagined himself on the ice.  He bought his own whistle, so that he could pretend to referee the other kids playing.  He strapped on skates for an open skate and stepped out onto the ice.  He tentatively took little baby ice-skating steps.  He did great, so we thought, "Ok, Zeke, let's do hockey!"  We bought him the shorts, and the pads, and the stick for his birthday. The first night, we took out all the gear from our bag, along with the 20 or so other parents, all eagerly awaiting the unveiling of their tiny ice stars.  We piled on the pads.  We tightened the skates.  And then it happened...Zeke walked onto the ice.  I knew instantly that something was wrong.  Zeke hunched himself over and skated almost like he was curled up in a ball. It was weird.  Then it got worse.  He started falling.  And I don't mean he fell a couple of times.  He fell and fell and fell some more.  He was clearly struggling.  At one point he looked like a turtle stuck on his back. I heard the snickers around me.  I glanced around and saw a couple of moms pointing and assumed the worst.  My face flamed up.  I could feel the embarrassment and then the shame rising.  I was texting with my friends, just to make it through the 50 minute lesson. "These women, they don't know.  How dare they laugh at Zeke!"  "There's actual pointing going on!  I'm rageful.  "I'm just sad.  Tears are rolling down my face.  I wish this world was a better place for him.  I just want it to be so much better." Read More

A Prayer for Vocational Wellbeing

Praying time: less than three minutes. Joy in ministry is a good sign of a balanced, healthy life.  I pray constantly for God's gift of joy for you!  Gob bless your endeavors in the ministry of God's Word. Dear Father in heaven, what a joy it is for me to be called into the most high and holy calling of all, sharing the saving love of Jesus Christ with others.  Even the angels of heaven must be jealous of me.  I am privileged to bring "good news of great joy for all people."  Thank you, Father, for the unique opportunity of this calling. Read More

A Prayer for Emotional Wellbeing

Praying time, less than three minutes. When our emotions get the best of us, we suffer for it.  The healing love of Christ is for the restoration of our bodies, our souls and our spirits.  I'm praying that you know that healing love this week! Loving Father of all mercy, how glad I am that You want only the very best for me. No matter how I wander, You invite me back.  No matter how I act in ways that hurt myself and those I love, You bring restoration and healing grace. You make everything new again.  I need a new beginning. Read More