“No Crib For His Head”

no crib for his head
by Dona Hake
The birth of both of our sons was such a joyous time for my husband and me.    I can remember about two weeks before my due date I was having a weekly checkup and I told my Doctor that I felt I was going to go before my due date.   I can still remember him pulling out his date book.   He told me he had a fishing trip planned, and he was canceling it.   He said, “I never ignore a woman’s intuition, especially one that is pregnant!”      Sure enough I went within a few days.    When both my sons were born we choose a particular method in the hospital that our Doctor honored.    While I was in labor we had worship music playing, and my heart was kept at peace through every stage of labor.   In the delivery room I had requested the lights remain very low and the only light used was Doctor’s light for him to deliver our sons.  
As peaceful, worship music filled the room, I had also requested that everyone talked softly.  Immediately after the birth of each of our sons, our Doctor did anything necessary, and our son was handed directly to me to embrace.   After that he was handed to my husband, and placed in a bathtub of water the same temperature as the womb.   As my husband held him in the water, he prayed over him and spoke softly.   What a beautiful bonding time that was during both births of our sons as he held them for the first time.     I can honestly say that childbirth has been one of the most beautiful things that I have ever done in this life.   To witness the miracle of life being brought forth with my husband is a a sweet, joyous,  and precious memory.
So today I am reflecting on the fact that there was no room for our Savior to lay down His head after He was born.   The fact Mary was ready to give birth, and she had no clue where it was going to happen makes me wonder what her thoughts were.  I cannot even begin to imagine what this poor young woman had to deal with.  Mary and Joseph had no choice of location nor did they have nice  accommodations that we so easily take for granted.  Let’s look at what Mary had to face in her time of delivering the Son of God.     Let us read the story from the book of Luke.
Luke 2:4-6  New Life Version 


4 “Joseph went up from the town of Nazareth in the country of Galilee to the town of Bethlehem. It was known as the city of David. He went there because he was from the family of David. 5 Joseph went to have his and Mary’s names written in the books of the nation. Mary was his promised wife and soon to become a mother.

6 While they were there in Bethlehem, the time came for Mary to give birth to her baby. 7 Her first son was born. She put cloth around Him and laid Him in a place where cattle are fed. There was no roomfor them in the place where people stay for the night.”

This portion of scripture reminds us that  Jesus came to this world and the only place available to lay this newborn King  was a manger, the place where animals would feed from.    I am very sure that Mary’s environment for the birth of Jesus was not very peaceful nor comfortable either.    The other evening as I was driving my Granddaughters home we stopped at a manger scene, and I shared with them what it must have been like for little Baby Jesus.   I told them it must have been noisy and stinky, and certainly not an ideal place for a newborn baby.   I always love watching their little faces when I share such things with them.     These pretty little manger scenes that we see on our Christmas cards certainly mislead us as to what it really was like.
  Today I would like you to think about how he still searches for hearts that He may reside in.  Many hearts still refuse to make room for Him.  Before we were saved, our heart was  a place that was cold, full of unrest, and  confusion. Yet Jesus was willing to come and take residence in our hearts as we invited him in. I encourage you today, as you encounter people whether it be at work or wherever in the marketplace, to think and pray how you can be used to display the love and light of the presence of Jesus Christ.  
Lord, help us to recognize the heart that is full of confusion and has great need of you, for their life is empty.   Show us how to shine the light of His love that they would see their need to open their heart and make room for our loving Savior.    Amen.

“It’s the Little Foxes…”

its the little foxes
by Dona Hake
This is written in scripture and has become cliche…”It’s the little foxes that spoil the vine.”   These eight words carry much truth and can be powerful to our souls if we heed to them.      Something can be in full bloom,   and looking beautiful and healthy, yet if a little fox if permitted to roam in the vineyard, there is going to be trouble.
I had an upsetting experience on yesterday morning.   While preparing my oatmeal, I was  pouring in some raisins, and one  raisin fell on the floor.   My German Shepherd was standing right beside me and gobbled that  raisin up in no time.  I immediately got on my iphone and checked for what I should do.     For those of you that do not know, grapes and raisins are extremely toxic to dogs.   It can cause kidney failure.    I googled it into my phone, and I just felt I needed to give my vet a call.   As soon as I told the technician that my 75 pound dog ate one raisin, she was quick to put me on hold and get right to the doctor.   She came back to me, and said that I needed to induce vomiting on Aasha right away.  The vet felt that as big as she was that the raisin probably would not affect her, but we were not taking ANY chances on it.  I heeded to their advice and induced vomiting.
Now let’s look at the old saying, “It’s better to be safe than sorry.”  I almost was not going to call but I just wanted to be on the safe side of the whole thing.   My vet felt the same way.     How could something so small be such a potential hazard?   Yet it can be, and I have knew of a  pet owner losing her dog to kidney failure from ingesting grapes.    I have got to say that inducing vomiting on Aasha was extremely unpleasant for me to do.    Honestly, I did not want to do it, but I love her too much not to have taken this measure.  She looked at me with those beautiful sad eyes as she kept vomiting all over my kitchen floor not once, but five times.   Even though it  made me upset to have to do it, sometimes in life you just gotta do the right thing no matter how unpleasant it is.
Now, can we look at this and use it as an analogy of how the smallest of things can be poison to our hearts and minds.    How many times do we feel we can afford one little thought, one little word to escape our lips.   Seems harmless to us, yet that one little thought or one little word could be poisonous to our soul, and cause us great pain in the end.    We must be aggressive with ourselves, and go to what ever measure we need to and rid of poisonous things in our life.  
Today, I encourage you to guard the vineyard of your heart and mind.   Guard it with all vigilance and care.   It is those times that when all is blooming beautifully that we can be deceived and miss those “little foxes” that are assigned to destroy us.    God is able to cause His wisdom, grace, and all that we need to keep our hearts guarded. 

“Always Before Me”

always before me  dec 2014
by Dona Hake
Psalm 16:8 (KJV)

“I have set the Lord always before me:

because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.”

I can remember photographing a few weddings and their location was an area that I never traveled before. I was always ever so thankful for my GPS because as long as I stayed on it’s path I eventually got there. I have to say that my GPS never let me down.  I would have to say that I most appreciated my GPS at the end of shooting for maybe eleven hours and when I left the reception, it was pitch dark and I had absolutely no clue where I was.   What a peace it brought me as I just followed it closely to my home destination.


Today we are reflecting on keeping the Lord always before us.   As He goes before us, and we humbly submit, we will always reach our destination.   He promises to show us His wisdom, and that direction may come from His Word or a wise person He has placed in your life. There are so many ways He comes along side of us when we do not know how to get where we need to be. As we stay aware of His presence in the journey we can trust Him, He is well able to get us there safely. Trusting Him in the journey is so vitally important because He may just take you a different direction than what you expected. I believe those are the times that we get an even greater revelation of “all things work together for the good to Him that loves God.”


I can remember leaving a wedding one cold, rainy and very foggy night. I was so glad that I had the GPS to get me home. I have to tell you though that I was tempted to be shaken many times as I heeded to how it was telling me to get home. You see, it was taking me home a totally different way than I came. It made no sense and there were some frightening moments for me being alone on roads I never traveled. Eventually I came to a place where I could leave out a sigh of relief that I knew where I was. Many times our spiritual journeys can be like this as well. Jesus will never fail us…He promised that. Know that He will always get us to our destination in His time by His direction. God bless you.

“Lift Up Your Inner Self To Him!”

Cause me to hear
By Dona Hake


If you go to bed worried and troubled, you will be sure to greet your day with those troubled thoughts magnified in your heart and mind.   The Word says that He gives His beloved sweet sleep, yet if we choose to meditate upon wrong things and sleep upon worrisome thoughts, we surely will not sleep a peaceful sleep.   The Lord does not want us to greet our day with the thoughts of yesterday nor the worries about our tomorrows. I love how the Psalmist asks the Lord to cause Him to hear of his Lord’s lovingkindness first thing in the morning.



Psalm 143:8 (AMP)

“Cause me to hear Your loving-kindness in the morning,

for on You do I lean and in You do I trust.

Cause me to know the way wherein

I should walk, for I lift up my inner self to You.”



Let us trust to hear His voice about our day.   Most importantly we must remind ourselves that worry and allowing troublesome thoughts to remain and torment us is not God’s best for us.  May I encourage you to cast all of your burdens upon Him that we can live free from weights that are unnecessary.  

Let us remember to lean on Him not only for His strength and wisdom but for the balance and direction that He can bring to our lives. Thank Him as He unfolds His plan for our day yet be willing to allow Him to interrupt it if He has other plans.
Lift up your soul to Him and allow Him to touch you because He loves you so.  Lift up your inner self to Him and allow Him to do great things in your life today!

“Lord, I Pray…”

Lord I pray
by Dona Hake
“Lord, are my thoughts and words acceptable to you?” This would probably be a very good question and prayer that should cross our minds often. I believe that this question would keep us out of much trouble that could easily be avoided. Many times we are quick to think things or form opinions based on our first impression. Maybe you are thinking things and speaking things based on what you have seen in the past. As a result of not asking the Lord for how you are to respond in word and in thought , you could get yourself in a difficult situation or offend someone.

Psalm 19:14 (AMP)
“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart

be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my

[firm, impenetrable] Rock and my Redeemer.”


It is only God that knows you all too well. He understands how you tend to think and react. He knows every hurt and pain that is still in the healing process within you. He is well able to help you hold your tongue and alter your thought process. It is He that can help us to be rock solid in every area of our life because He is the Rock! Look to Him as often as you need to be your Helper today that you may think thoughts and speak words that are pleasing to Him.   Lord, help us!   We desire that our words are blessing to you and edifying to those around us.

“He Counts the Stars”

he counts the stars
by Dona Hake
Psalm 147:3-5 (TLB)


“He heals the brokenhearted, binding up their wounds.

He counts the stars and calls them all by name.
How great he is! His power is absolute! His understanding is unlimited.”


I love these verses and I love thinking about how God knows all the specifics about everything. He knows everything about everything that He created. He created you and the stars and there is no limit to what He knows! This is a powerful thought isn’t it?


This scripture should cause us to ponder His greatness and along with such greatness the psalmist proclaims that He heals the broken in heart. This time of the year always causes me to think about people that do not look forward to celebrating the holidays. This can be an extremely painful time for some people. I would dare to say that there is more depression in people this time of year than none other. For many, the holidays is simply a painful reminder of the past that they can only revisit in the precious, silent memories of their heart. I lost both of my parents very close to Christmas and also my very special Grandmother. I embrace the precious hope of seeing them again someday because I know they are in Heaven.

Today I want to encourage those of you that He that has given every single star a name knows and understands the pain of your heart. Whether it be that you have lost a loved one to death, divorce or there is broken fellowship with someone special to you, He is able to bring you comfort. He is able to come close to you and touch your heart and bring His touch of healing to it. Our Lord is great. Nothing is impossible with His overwhelming power. He is loving, compassionate, and wise beyond all measure. God bless you.

“Can You Hear Him Whispering To You?

by Dona Hake


I have been purposing to share along the lines of keeping our hearts quiet especially in prepartion for the holidays that are approaching us.   Many times our lives get so jammed packed with things to do, places to go, and “to do” lists a mile long.  I can remember once feeling extremely overwhelmed with much to do.  There were things that needed accomplished that I felt were no way possible within my means of time and ability.  I stood in the front yard with my dog and looked up and was praying about my day.  I felt a “whisper” from within that seemed to quiet me and bring fresh perspective to my day.  ”Sometimes it’s not as big as it looks.”   Have you ever experienced how something seemed to be a mountain of things to do, but once you tackled it, it really wasn’t as big as you thought it to be. 
As the Lord spoke to my heart that morning, He was plainly and simply bringing new perspective to face all that had to be done.  I held fast to that and honestly I was able to  accomplish more than expected  because I choose a new “dwelling place” for my thoughts and my soul rested there.  Sometimes we just need to be quiet and not allow the noise that goes on in our heads to dictate peace or lack of it.  One very famous quote that I love from Ralph Waldo Emerson that applies beautifully…
“Let us be silent that we may hear the whisper of God.”
Today take moments of time and practice just being quiet and allow His peace to sweep over your busy soul.   He will calm it with His presence, and His sweet whispers.


Is Your Heart Quiet Today?

Quiet heart
by Dona Hake
Sometimes we need to say, “Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!”   to our hearts!     In the midst of the hustle and bustle in this holiday season, I encourage you to hold fast to your peace.   I remember hearing  on the news someone quote a person saying “Just knowing I am going to be with my family over the holidays makes me feel like I am gonna have an anxiety attack.”   Sad isn’t it?   Yet, there are alot of people that feel this way especially over the holidays. Then there are those that wish they could sit with their loved ones during the holidays but they are no longer here. Any holiday can really bring pressures, depression  and anxiety IF and that is in all caps because it is IF we permit it to!   

Last year I can remember driving down the road and on my radio was playing “♪♫ It’s beginning to look alot like Christmas…♪ ♫ ♪” People were speeding down the road, honking their horns in impatience. There was so much rush, rush, rush, and I thought to myself, yes it is beginning to look alot like Christmas. The anxiety and madness is in the air and people allow the true meaning of it all to slip from their minds in the midst of it all. It saddens me that people are in such a hurry and they are trying to squeeze in one too many things and that they are driven to anxiety during this blessed season. I am probably correct in saying that many times we create our own anxieties simply because we are not purposing to keep our hearts quiet in the midst of any demand.


I am bound and determined to live one moment at time especially in this holiday season. I want to embrace peace in my heart and allow nothing or no one to snatch it away from me.

Proverbs 14:30 Amplified Bible

“A calm and undisturbed mind and heart are the life

and health of the body…”

I pray that you too will think about pursuing living one moment at a time and enjoy the stillness of His perfect peace each and every day.

“Joy To the World, Salvation Has Come!”

joy to the world salvation has come
by Dona Hake
I was recently talking with an individual, and we were discussing how sad it is that Christmas’ meaning is weakening.    This woman said to me, “Where is Jesus in Christmas anymore?   Where is salvation?”   I know many people wonder this, and in our politically correct world in which we live, we are waking up to more and more things that are “no-no’s” for us as we speak.   It is so sad, and I find it appalling.   We as believers need to stay strong and hold fast that we may speak our hearts in love and boldness.  I believe as we do this that there will be hearts that will hear and receive the truth.
Today I just want to share from one of many people’s favorite Christmas Carol entitled “Joy To the World”.    Did you know that this song was authored by Isaac Watts in the 1600’s?    This advent humn is one of Watts’ hymns from his well-known hymnals of 1719 entitled “Psalms of David Imitate in the Language of the New Testament.”    This song is truly for the Christian that realizes the spiritual significance that God Himself invaded this world and provided a means whereby sinful man might live eternally.
Let us look at the third verse.   Many times people are only familiar with certain verses, and this verse really blesses me.   If you are like me, I cannot read this, I sing it to myself with the  “Joy To the World tune!
“No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found,
Far as, far as the curse is found.”
Today I leave you with the meditation that salvation came, and His Name is Jesus.    Where anything has been cursed, the Lord has come to make His blessings flow over them, and  overtake them.    No more do we need to allow sorrows to grow, nor thorns be allowed to  infest the “gardens” of our hearts.   What a blessing and celebration this should be for us as we ponder this thought.   Joy to the world!  Salvation has come!

“Learning to Wait and Rest”

wait rest receiv dec 2014
by Dona Hake
 We are so blessed and yet I can say at times that some blessings have spoiled me.   I also realize  how easy it is to take  blessings for granted.  I love all the modern conveniences that I am blessed with.   The microwave makes dinner preparation go quicker, and there are days that I certainly appreciate that. We go through the drive through window and we no sooner hand our money, our bag of food is being handed to us (sometimes even thrown at us!). Short and simple…we are way too used to reaching for something and we do not have to wait for it for a very long time. We could be honest and admit that we are all spoiled a bit and sometimes it causes us to  forget the importance of patiently waiting for some things.

I think this has sadly spilled over into our attitude toward our loving God and how we see Him dealing with us. We pray a prayer and if it does not happen in the timing we projected in our mind, we can be tempted to think that He did not hear our prayer. Maybe He answers our prayer and it was not how we imagined and we may be tempted to be disappointed with how He decided to solve our problem.


We must always remind ourselves that He has His timing, His wisdom and His understanding of exactly how to deal with us, and the issues in life that we face. I thank God for the times that God seemed to delay answering certain prayers because along the journey of my wait He was working out other issues in my life. Many times He used those waiting times to bring my eyes to focus on areas of my life that needed His divine attention in order that He may help me in another area that I was not aware of. Be encouraged when you pray and remember to wait, rest, and you will receive!

6 Responses to “Devotional”

  1. Lisa Viands says:

    This is a good way of teaching the kids to forgive each other(Matt. 5:7). I like the power of this gentle scripture and lesson… Thanks!!

  2. Selena Neely says:

    Ralph &I are really enjoying your devotional together.

  3. Selena Neely says:

    Oh, what a wonderful reminder! I want to break the magnifing glass of worry and trust God for each step I take.

  4. Dona Hake says:

    It is interesting Selena how the more we worry the bigger and more magnified things get in our minds. Oh how important it is to trust our God for the smallest of things! Thank you for sharing!