Spiritual Encounters at the Kitchen Counter

This book takes the ordinary in the kitchen and shows the extraordinary lessons which can be gleaned from them. Today there is an emphasis on new designs in the kitchen, 30-minute meals, kitchen make-over’s, and the love of retro. Spiritual Encounters at the Kitchen Counter is a unique devotional. It can trigger memories of the past of one’s earlier kitchen(s) or a mother’s or grandmother’s kitchen. The devotions in this book approach familiar items in the kitchen with spiritual lessons they offer.




 Dear Lord, I got up this morning and started through my day.

I felt so alone and blue, much to my dismay.

I longed to be full of energy and to accomplish much,

But my heart yearned for love and a soft gentle touch.

I felt guilty for not having direction today.

I then on my Lord my burden did lay.

So, I shopped for groceries, and Carole cut my hair.

I had the car washed and stopped by a mall near there.

I ambled and looked and found an interesting book.

I told the clerk I’d not come for it to look.

He said,”…impulse buying,” but I said I’d used reason.

See, I’d prayed to the Lord to help me in this season.

This book came as an answer to prayer.

This author had experienced the need and had something to share.

Then as I prepared to eat something from Chick-filet,

Along came a friend who just last night did say

That I’d know from the Lord just what to do,

And, dear Lord, I gave it to You.

So, thanks for the day, the accomplishment, fellowship, and book.

I know that you’re there, and my burden You took!

December 30,1995





            Fifty Years Ago

         T’was nearly fifty years ago

                   In a little country school

                          That Donnie Heier and Joyce Irene

                     Ran from an angry mule.


                                They read their books near the stream

                             And climbed the chalky rocks.

                                 They chased the fluttering butterflies,

                                           He, with brown eyes, she, curly locks.


             “Annie Over” was the game

                            That the four students played.

                           Charlie Johnson, Superintendent,

            Frequent visits paid.


        A pot-bellied stove

                       Kept us children warm.

                            No telephones or electric lights,

                              No water that would run.


                          Fifty years is a long, long time

                                                  Yet, they share their mem’ries now.

                                  They still have many recollections

                                       Of when and where and how.


                                               That one-room school was moved away.

                                 They picture it still there.

                        This year, the golden year,

                                     A reunion they will share.









                        PIECES AND PATTERNS

                   (Her Life Was Like a Quilt Pattern)

                    Ninety-three years were the pieces;

                        Each hour and each day, the weave.

                     Together they made a beautiful pattern;

                        Its beauty our lives did perceive.


                     Her life was the beautiful pattern;

                        Her love the strong,binding thread.

                     Events were bound together with joy,

                        And peace filled the life that she led.


                     She the last stitch has taken;

                        The pattern is all complete.

                     She has put all the pieces together.

                        Now she is at Jesus’s feet.

                            JoyceRoberts Lott

                              (Joy – N – Peace)


                     (Verses one and three were read at

                     Grandmother Eva Alice Weekly Orten’s

                     funeral January 23, 1985.)


                     (Entire poem was used for Mother,

                     Vera Irene Orten Roberts’s, funeral

                     on May 15,2010.)

                     Others have used this poem since.





 My Account Was Settled 

My debits and credits are entered.

My double lines have been drawn.

My balance sheet is all totaled out.

It was time that I have traveled on.


Keeping books was for me a pleasure.

I was thankful for each wonderful task.

Each boss to me was a blessing.

As I shared, “What more could I ask?”


I recorded each item on my ledgers

With neat writing I accurately penned.

Then I placed my ledgers away

For a future entry, my friend.


I love you all so dearly.

Be kind, love family, honor God.

Please keep your life in check;

Have no bitterness or facade.


Thank you for your visits,

beautiful flowers and each card.

I had peace with God and was ready.

Yet, our final good-byes are hard.


I pray you will be ready

When at last your time will be.

Believe in Jesus; have the peace I had.

Then you, with me, our Jesus will see. 

(Written for Aunt Florence’s graveside service)  


After much thought about all the ways stewardship can apply in our lives, I found that God prompted me to remember that the way we use the bodies He gave us is a significant example of good or bad stewardship.


Read:  Luke 16:1-13
No servant can serve two masters;  for either he will hate the one, andlove the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise theother.  Ye cannot serve God and mammon" (Luke 16:13)

When we think of being a steward, we may think of money andpossessions.  At this age, we may think we do not have much of anythingover which to be a steward.  However, one of our primary areas for wisestewardship is our life.  The body, combined with our mind and soul,can experience highly emotional battles as we deal with the matters ofright and wrong which will affect our entire lives. 

The choices we make will give us freedom or bondage — freedom tofollow the Lord or bondage to sin. Wrong choices result from our losingour focus on the Lord. In many cases, they are sins of the flesh. 

We can be pulled in two directions and feel like a hypocrite and afailure.  It can take a toll on us, even after we have decided to dowhat is right.  It can weaken and exhaust a person.  Most certainlythere will be an emotional effect which can very well affect usphysically.  

One common battleground shared by many of us is our love life.  In herbook, Passion and Purity, Elizabeth Elliot clearly affirms that tobring your "love life" under Christ’s control is a matter of bodilystewardship.  Billy Graham stated that "This book is definitely formen, too."  Ms. Elliot relates that "The majority will sacrificeanything–security, honor, self-respect, the welfare of people theylove, obedience to God — to passion."

We must not mistake passion for love.  The casual sex of today is theabuse of another person insofar as the one person has used the otherfor your his or her own gratification.  True love is not present inthat situation.  By being good stewards of our bodies, we can avoidsins of passion.  Our bodies are the vessels of God. 

If we have ever lost the battle, are we disqualified for the Christianlife and service?  Jesus came into the world specifically to redeem usfrom sin.  Paul wrote to the Corinthians "No fornicator oridolater,…will possess the kingdom of God."

But then he says, "Such were some of you, but you have been through thepurifying waters…."  We must not let Satan blind us to these facts. We can still be used.
(375 words)

A few years ago the President of the United States stood before theworld and confessed to his sexual misconduct and acknowledged that "itwas sin."  No matter the sin, God will forgive those who truly arerepentant.  In this same spirit, we should be equally as eager toforgive and/or to accept forgiveness and sin no more.  (477 words)

PRAYER:  Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spiritwithin me.  Lord, I do want to maintain a clean heart.  I want to walkwith You.  In your name I pray.  Amen

The Path

The Path

There’s a path that is right,

And one that is wrong.

We can follow our Lord

And enjoy His song

Or go our own way

And reap a sad end.

There’s always a choice

Just round the bend.

Let’s make our choices

For His glory, not ours,

For if we don’t do that,

There’s one who devours.

So, steadfast, immovable,

Let us always be,

Following Him together,

Walking faithfully. 

The Sunny Spot

The Sunny Spot

I took this journey in my mind,

    Relaxing along the way.

I found a sunny place to stop.

    Why a tear fell, I cannot say.

The sun was shining, warming me

    As I stood by the cedar tree

In the yard in front of the house,

    With my swing by the side of me.

I saw the fence, the porch, the door.

    I could envision the whole scene,

But I saw no one else around.

    What could this mean?

I recalled how Dad worked on the farm…

    Mother’s cinnamon rolls baking,

But I stood there all alone,

    Enjoying warmth, but somehow aching. 

Christmas All Year

Christmas All Year

I am so glad I can celebrate Christmas every day of the year,

    For I know the Lord of it and hold Him very dear.

He’s in my heart and is my friend from day to day.

    He knows all about me, not just what I think and say.

He gives me purpose and direction, guiding me by His Word.

    He’s the most important message I have ever heard.

The bells of Christmas ring in my heart with joy.

    The carols of His birth are words I often employ.

Every tree I see is a Christmas tree recognizing His birth.

    And every beauty I see, a decoration here on earth.

When I see every dancing leaf glistening in the fall,

    I recognize the Master Who has created them all.

Each morsel I partake is a special festive treat —

    A gift from my Father above, given for me to eat.

Every provision for each day is a specially wrapped gift.

    He, when I might be feeling down, does my head uplift.

All through the year I can have His joy and peace.

    It’s Jesus Who gives me them and causes anxiety to cease.

I rejoice that I can celebrate Christmas with no respect of season,

    For Christ is with me every day — that is my reason!