Good News!

I am so sorry that it has taken me so long to post.  There is a lot going on here.

Not the least of which is:  Renewal Ranch Opens This Weekend

Remember the Strong Box post??

It has become a reality.  The guys are here and moving in and we are giving them

 their strong boxes.

When my husband brought home the Bibles with their names on them the other day,

 I just started sobbing when I ran my hand across their names.  Finally, we were

dealing with real people not just a mirage off in the distance.

(Getting their boxes ready)

So we are really busy with this awesome venture but I will have a post

early next week showing you pictures of the Ranch.

Thank you for your patience with me as I am trying to find my way

again with this blog and what God wants it to be.


This is a copy of the letter included in their strong boxes--Please feel free to adapt it to use for anyone for whom you would like to provide a strong box.


As some of the Renewal Ranch team members were discussing some items that needed to be provided for you to make this venture successful, the topic of a good Bible and Bible study books was mentioned. My mind went back some years to a trend among women who were trying to be faithful to a daily devotional time with God. The trend was Quiet Time baskets.

In them the seeker would place whatever books and utensils were important to her for a prosperous daily quiet time: a Bible, journal, pens, pencils, high-lighters, devotional book, current book she was reading, etc.

We all agreed that the men would need most of these same items.  But we immediately agreed that we should not put them in a basket. My husband suggested a box and we all thought that was a good idea. 

This thought became heavy on my mind. Later on that evening, the thought came to me: "My dad had what he called his "strong box." Many times I heard him say to one of us kids, "Bring me my strong box." That was where he kept his valuables. Now mind you, this box was not very big because we did not have very many valuables--maybe marriage license, birth certificates, army papers, that sort of thing. It was strong, metal and fireproof--his strong box.

Oh, wow! the light bulb went off--We could give you guys "strong boxes." The implications were myriad. It would contain all the items you would use in your time at the Ranch to become strong. It would leave with you when you graduate as a reminder of all the items God used in your life to help you become successful in this program.  It would also serve as a place to store your future valuables--home deeds,  marriage licenses, birth certificates, spiritual birth certificates--and serve to remind you that we have faith in God to bring you to a place of stability and strength in Him.

I couldn't tell you how many years it's been since I thought of Daddy's strong box. That God would place that thought in my mind was just another reminder of how much God loves you and the other men whom Renewal Ranch will have the privilege and responsibility of ministering to. He even cares what we name your boxes.

This will not be an easy road that you are going to travel.  You will experience times of doubt, distress, discouragement and disappointment.  It is at these very moments that we hope you will reach to your strong box and know that myriad people have loved you, have worked tireless and selfless hours so that you would know you are loved and cared for.  But far beyond that—you would reach to it knowing it contains everything you will ever need in this life—The Very Word of God--the Bible!

It is our hope that this strong box will be your own personal reminder of the Only reason why any of us are strong or stable—Our Mighty God, our strong Savior, who stands ready and willing to help you draw strength from Him, to grow into strong and mighty men of valor and of God.

My brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Ephesians 6:10