If I shared with you all the miracles I’m seeing unfold in my life right now, it would almost seem like a motion-picture.  In due time, I will share them all  with all of you, but for now, I’ve been sharing them with some of my closest prayer warriors that I refer to as my personal “board of directors.”

By the way, if you don’t have a personal Board of Directors, I would encourage you to fine one.  Not just anyone can serve on your board of directors – they’ve got to be tried and true friends – friends who will keep you confidential discussions confidential.  The Board of Directors is likely to be very small, but very powerful – they are friends who will encourage you to take a leap when you need to;  to take a step back when you need to; they always have your back.  My personal recommendation is to have a Godly Board of Directors as well – those who have an active prayer life, and will not hesitate to go to prayer on your behalf – and you’d do the same for them.

On Saturday night, I texted the members of my Board of Directors to tell them about a miracle that was unfolding right before my eyes in the life of someone very close to me.  At the same time, said individual said to me, “you know, I’m watching for miracles to happen.”

My only response to that person was, “Can you not see them happening right before our eyes??”

I think we can miss miracles if we aren’t watching through the lens of expectation.

Jesus said, “I have come that you might have life abundantly.”   I’ve lived long enough and had enough ups and downs in my life to know that doesn’t mean “have Jesus and have prosperity”..   but I’ve lived long enough to know that if you have Jesus, you have prosperity in life – perhaps not in material wealth, but in other areas of our lives.

The coolest thing about sharing miracles is that it helps other people grow.  I have one special friend with whom I’ve shared these some of the events of the past few months.  Last week, they said to me, “you know, this is pretty incredible to watch from my side.”   In part because of the things that have been happening, this person has stepped out in faith to begin a journey of their own – and I’m expecting miracles for them as well.

My cup runneth over.

Blessings to you all, my friends.


Copyright 2018 Journey For Life. All rights reserved.


Cheyne, Shane, Peter, Little Carter, Miss Kitt’s Awana…. part 4

Little Carter was born to My friend, Elise. I don’t remember whether there were any signs during pregnancy, but when he was born, he had to be put on a ventilator to help him breathe. He was on the ventilator for a good while, weeks if not months. Elise was a young, single mom, and the baby’s father, who had promised to be with her, left when the hospital visits became overwhelming.

In her faithfulness, our youngest daughter added “Little Carter” to her prayers. She never missed a prayer. As she prayed for Carter, I prayed for Elise, whose story was a little more complicated for a child to understand.

Over time, Carter was able to be weaned from the ventilator, until he was off of it completely! Praise God!

I was able to continue to share my faith with Elise, and she began to build her confidence as a mother. She continued to work her day job and started her own Mary Kay and Lalaroe business, and it’s been neat to see her flourish as a young women.

To look at Carter now, you’d never know he had such a rough beginning in life. God has brought guy strength and personality to this awesome little boy! I pray His continued blessing on Elise and her family.



Copyright 2018 Journey For Life. All right reserved

and the winner is…


If you have faith as big as a mustard seed, you can move mountains (Matthew 17:20) or mulberry trees (Luke 17:6).  Faith is believing in something you cannot see, but know is real.

My faith has been tested many times throughout my life, and the more it is tested, the more I know that God is not only real, but cares about even the smallest details of my life.

A few weeks ago, my husband told me that I have enough faith for both of us.  He meant it as a compliment, but on the other hand, it makes me sad.  I want the world to know what an awesome God we have, and to have faith that can move mountains and mulberry trees.

As miracles unfold before my eyes, I am convinced more than ever that God has a plan.   Our job really is simply to get to know Him and recognize His voice, and follow His lead.

I am learning that, the bigger our dreams, the bigger the opportunity we give to God to work miracles in our lives.   I’ve always been a dreamer – I love thinking of possibilities – and I see treasure where others see trash.


The feature image is a screen shot of an on-line spiritual gift test I took a few years ago.  Though I wasn’t surprised about Faith and Leadership, I must admit, I was a bit surprised by “Pastoring” being my number 3.  I’ve never thought of myself as a pastor, however, I have a unique opportunity to coach people, both through my day-job as a manager, and in my hobby-job as a piano teacher.   It is my sincerest desire that people come to know Jesus as their friend…. so I guess that means “pastoring” to some degree.

It’s an awesome responsibility, and an awesome opportunity all at the same time.

I’ve asked you all to join me in praying for a really big miracle – and I’d like to ask you to keep praying.

If you have ordered the book, Masquerade, I want to thank you very much for your support!  If you haven’t yet, I’d like to encourage you to do so – it’s a story about a spiritual battle faced by a career driven mother of 3.  It’s not a fairy tale story, but one of hope during dark times.

If you like my journey, please follow my blog!




Copyright 2018 Journey For Life. All rights reserved.

Before my eyes.

As miracles unfold before my eyes

Their beauty yet beheld

I am confident in Your faithfulness

I know You love me

I am Yours, Lord,

Willing to share all that You’ve done and are doing in my life with others to bring You all the glory You deserve

Your goodness is unending.

Forever grateful for Your blessings

Blessings, SB

Copyright 2018 Journey For Life. All rights reserved


Surrender – Jordan Howerton Band

In my early 20’s, right out of college, I worked for a small company in the South Hills of Pittsburgh.  The owner was a man with a large ego, who created all kinds of drama with the women who worked in the shop.  I don’t want to say negative things about him, but suffice to say I did not enjoy working there.  With a degree in electrical engineering, I assumed it would be fairly easy to find a better job, so I began to search.  After 3 months of searching and submitting resumes, with not so much as a bite, I was frustrated.  In my frustration, I reached out to God and began to pray about it.

On a particularly frustrating Monday morning, nearly at my witt’s end, I went to lunch by myself at a local restaurant, where I prayed – and vented – to God about the situation.  While I was having lunch that day, a thought popped into my head that perhaps there was a reason God wanted me there.  In honest humility, probably for the first time in my life, I surrendered my will for His will.  There, in the restaurant, I silently prayed that if there was a reason He wanted me in that job with those people that He would show me the purpose. I specifically remember saying that I was willing to stay if it was His will.

Exactly four days later, on Thursday, I was on a sales call for a small company in the East.  I met with the Operations Manager, selling the products that I was being paid to sell.  While we were talking, he mentioned that he was looking to hire some engineers.  I mentioned that I happened to have my resume with me in the car.  He asked me to get it, so I did; he interviewed me, and offered me a job on the spot!  I told him that I’d want to give two weeks’ notice before starting, so we agreed on a start date, and I left, elated!

The next morning, I gave my two weeks’ notice.  The owner decided I didn’t need two weeks, and told me I was done immediately.  He had someone in the company drive me home, since I had a company car.  When I got home, I called the man who had offered me the job and told him what happened, and he asked if I could just start the following Monday.

I realized in that instant that my three month wait (which seemed like an eternity at the time, but in retrospect was a vapor) was so much more about getting my heart right with God than it was about finding a perfect job.  I had been relying on my own skills to find a job.  It wasn’t until I completely surrendered to God that he gave me what I was looking for.

In many of his books, Mark Batterson says that God wants us to get where He wants us to go more than we want to get where we want to go.

I’ve been on a pretty incredible journey.  You may think that, having had that surrender – God moment all those years ago would have changed my life forever – and it did! But, in my humanness, there are still times where I forget to completely surrender to God.  Let me just tell you that God is still in the miracle business, my friends..  and He is looking for us to surrender so that He can bless us.


This scripture hangs in my bathroom so that I can see it every day.  To me, it doesn’t mean that God just gives us everything we want… but when we delight in His perfect timing and perfect plan, our desires align with His desires and He is able to bless us.

You are about to hear some of my incredible journey – that all started when I was able to surrender my will to His will.  Wow.  what a crazy ride!

Oh, and a shout-out to the Jordon Howerton band, who played worship for the 2016 LIFE conference for the Christian Missionary Alliance church – this song is amazing – it had such an impact on our youth group and leaders while we were there, and I play it often still today – I hope you enjoy it!




Copyright 2018 Journey  For Life – all rights reserved.


Cheyne, Shane, Bear, Peter, Little Carter, Miss Kitt’s Awana…. part 3

I’ve been telling you all about the prayers of our youngest daughter, whom I’ve learned so much from about being faithful to prayers.  

Today, I’d like to tell you a story about Peter and his dog, Millie.  Peter is an acquaintance of mine from my last job, who also works for the same company I currently work for.  When we worked together years ago, he told us a story of driving home one day, and pulling into the driveway only to feel a “bump” as he pulled into his driveway.  Unsure what he hit, he put the car into REVERSE and backed up, over the bump once again.  He got out of the car to discover that he had run over their family pet, Millie.   He was devastated, as were his kids.  They took Millie to the vet, but she passed away shortly after.

I was telling my family about the story, when our youngest daughter, who loves dogs, said she would pray for Millie.  I didn’t have the heart to tell her that Millie had gone to doggie heaven, so instead, I suggested that she pray for Peter instead.

So, in faithful prayer, she added Peter to her prayer list, and has been praying for him ever since – every now and again, I’ll run into him at work and let him know she’s still praying – he can’t believe that she remembers the story, let alone still prayers for him, but he’s very thankful for the prayers.



Copyright 2018 Journey For Life – all rights reserved.

In the midst of life…

A few years ago when I started my “official” Journey For LIFE (which was actually a fitness fundraiser to help pay for my kids’ trip to the Christian Missionary conference called L-I-F-E, I began a “blog” of sorts with the people I asked to sponsor me as I began a journey for fitness.  In my request for sponsorship, I committed to publish a weekly newsletter to let them know my progress – as kind of an accountability measure.   At first, the newsletter was simply about my diet and exercise, but it evolved over time to include some other articles, etc.  I also committed to praying for each one of my sponsors, and they began to share with me ways I could pray for them, so I began to know some of the things going on in their lives.  As I reflected each week, preparing for the newsletter, I was struck by the fact that while some were absolutely on a mountaintop, others were deep in the valley of despair.   I wanted to celebrate with those who are celebrating, and mourn with those who were mourning.

I mentioned to you the blessings that I experienced over the weekend… and quite honestly, the few that I mentioned cannot even begin to describe all of what’s been going on in my life lately.. but there will be time for that later.   In the same time as that, our oldest daughter, who is away at college, told us about her friend’s roommate…

Araella (a-RAY-la) was a senior in high school when doctors discovered that she had breast cancer.  She fought it then, and was currently enrolled at in college, where she dormed with two other girls.  Over the past month, she began not feeling well, but was afraid to get a scan to see if her cancer was back.  Last Sunday, April 8, 2018, she woke up in excruciating pain and went to the hospital.  The doctors confirmed that the cancer came back and had spread to her lungs and her bones.  The doctors said there was nothing else they could do for her. On Tuesday, they moved her out of the dorm, and told her roommates that she would not be back.

On Wednesday, she Face-timed her roommates, and they prayed together.  Araella had a strong faith, and knew that when she passed away, she would be in Heaven.  Her roommate, Gabby, said that she felt like the Holy Spirit was in their midst and they were all filled with peace.  Throughout the week, she said that she had glimpses of what Heaven looked like, and was excited to go, although sad to leave her friends and family.

On Sunday, April 15, Araella passed away, just one week after finding out her cancer was back.  Before she died, as she was being wheeled down the hallway at the hospital, laying on a gurney, asking nurses if they knew Jesus.

Ironically, Sunday, April 15 was the university’s Relay for Life, an event dedicated to people who have fought and are fighting cancer.  In the different categories of activities, they display names of people who are “still fighting” and those who are “remembered”.   During the event, they removed Araella’s sticker from the “still fighting” category and moved her to the “remembered” category, as her university friends grieved the news.

I know that to be absent from the earth is to be present with the Lord, and I am happy for Araella, knowing that she is forever present with Jesus, but my heart is heavy today.  I’m grieving the hole that her absence leaves behind in the lives of those who knew and loved her.  In the midst of life is death.



copyright 2018 Journey For Life – all rights reserved.

Cheyne, Shane, Bear, Peter, Little Carter, Miss Kitt’s Awana… part 2

Previously,  I shared with you the prayers of a little girl making a difference in my friends’ boys’ life. That same little girl, in her faithful prayers every single night, Today, I want to tell you about Shane and Bear.

Shane is the son of the pastor who married us and his wife. He is about six months older than our oldest daughter. We have known his parents for many years and consider them among our closest friends.

Shane is a very special young man, and when he was young, they got a dog and named him Bear. Shane and Bear were very close, and Bear was very good for Shane. One day, Bear got hit by a car, and it didn’t look like he’d survive. This would have been devastating to Shane so his parents asked for prayers. We, along with many others, prayed for Bear, and miraculously, he survived his injuries. To this day, our youngest continues to pray for Shane and Bear.

Shane is in college now, and Bear is getting up in years, but still looks forward to Shane visiting.  Prayer kept Bear around for Shane when it was really, really important for him to have  dog to love him unconditionally.

How much we all need someone to love us unconditionally!  Dogs are awesome in that regard, but then, so is God – it’s crazy to me that he loves us no matter what.

Thanks for your prayers!

Blessings, SB


Copyright 2018 Journey For Life – all rights reserved

Drinking from a saucer

When you live your life expecting and grateful for blessings, blessings abound.  I remember years ago in local diner overhearing a man respond to the waitress asking him how he was by saying, “I’m drinking from a saucer”.   It was his way of saying his cup runneth over.

Well, tonight, I am drinking from a saucer.   In all honesty, it’s hard to know where and how to begin sharing the blessings God’s poured out on my life lately, but here are a few…

so… I got a phone call from my son,  who is attending school in Minnesota, late Saturday night. He said,”Hey I’m in Chicago.”    “Whatcha doin there?” I said.  “I’m on my way home for the Blessing of the Bikes“.  My son and his friend drove all night to get home around 8 am to go to the blessing of the bikes.   His friend got to experience the Blessing of the Bikes, and we got to hang out together for lunch and again this evening before they head back to school tomorrow. It was a fun trip and it was great to see him… and that was a blessing.img_1277.jpg

Here was another blessing… all week, they’ve been calling for the weather to be terrible on Sunday – 40’s and rainy, then 60’s and rainy… The Blessing day starts early – the church service is at 11:00 am and the actual blessing is at 12:30.   We prayed for God to hold off the rain… and look how He answered the prayer… (Don’t ask me what is up with His sense of humor to send snow flurries to Murrysville on April 17… that’s another question for another day)  In reality, God held the rain off in our area until after 5 PM, which gave bikers who attended our event plenty of time to get home to a dry place before the skies opened up… that was a blessing.

and.. just some funny things that happened today…   it’s pretty awesome that, when you’re rocking the baby and don’t have room for a diaper bag, you can simply stuff the extra diaper right in your pocket.. that was pretty awesome.  LOL

And.. it’s also pretty awesome when your phone is sitting on top of the keyboard that you’re playing, and it thinks that you are driving.. that’s pretty awesome, too.

There are just so many other blessings I’m receiving right now that I could literally go on for  long time… but suffice to say that God is Good… All the time.

Blessings and Bikes

Blessings and Bikes – 2016

This post was originally from 2016, but tomorrow morning is the 2018 Blessing of the Bikes  – and my son just called to say he and a friend are driving all night from Minnesota to be present for the blessing – so say a prayer for their safety, will ya?

Last Sunday, our church hosted the 20th annual Blessing of the Bikes.  It’s an event that started when 4 bikers from the church approached the pastor with an idea to bring their friends to church. The first year, there were 162 bikes, and the town of Murrysville wondered what in the world was going on as they all rolled through.  Over the years, that event has blossomed, and is very well-known in the area.  The town of Murrysville actually sends the Mayor and emergency workers now, and even shuts down traffic for a while, to allow the event to be held.  It’s a completely free event, because, in the words of Pastor Dan, “so is gift of salvation”.   This year, on the 20th anniversary, we estimated approximately 15,000 bikes piled in – to our parking lot, and the adjacent blessing_bikes.jpgstreets, and the parking lots along Rt 22.  Figuring many bikes had 2 riders, we’d say there were A LOT of people who turned out for the event.  For the past 13 years, I have had the privilege of participating in the music for the service.   This year, our good friend Dave Smith, sang a song called “Jack Daniels & Jesus”.   I’m pretty sure there wasn’t another church in the country that sang that song on Sunday.

(By the way, I think there’s a message in here somewhere about starting a “movement” – it doesn’t take something BIG to make something BIG – it just requires someone to dream it and make it reality).

“Jack Daniels & Jesus”

Lately I’ve been trading
A good sermon and some praying
For a stranger in my bed
And a night that needs explaining
I’ve opened more bottles than I ever have my bible
This dirt road communion sure won’t lead me to revival

Between the black label and the letters in red
I felt what livin’ is
And what it’s like to live dead

I’ve taken a ride in the devil’s Cadillac
I’ve been so high I thought I wasn’t coming back
And just when I think I’m too far gone
Ringin’ in my head’s the 23rd psalm
I’ve seen the light
I’ve seen the darkness
Only God knows where my heart is
I’ve got my strength
And Lord knows, I’ve got my weakness
Oh, I’m lost somewhere between
Jack Daniels and Jesus

It’s my fault that I ain’t called
My momma in a month of Sundays
She’ll smell the whiskey through that phone
I can’t stand to hear her heartbreak
Next week, I see my brother Casey for the first time
Since it all went down
And I blacked his eye the night after our daddy died

I ain’t afraid to admit I’ve hit rock bottom
You wanna see a lifetime full of sins
Just look at me
I’ve got ’em

I’ve taken a ride in the devil’s Cadillac
I’ve been so high I thought I wasn’t coming back
And just when I think I’m too far gone
Ringin’ in my head’s the 23rd psalm
I’ve seen the light
I’ve seen the darkness
Only God knows where my heart is
I’ve got my strength
And Lord knows, I’ve got my weakness
Oh, I’m lost somewhere between
Jack Daniels and Jesus


This is what 25,000 bikes looks like from the Medic One Helicopter.

Wall to wall people



(can’t see the killer boots from here, but they were awesome.. lol)

I am watching life unfold for several young adults – some of them are making some very good life decisions, and some of them are making some incredibly bad life decisions, some of them very, very public, and some of them very private.   And my heart breaks.   In almost all of the cases, I say to myself, (and I’ve heard their parents say), “but they were raised differently than that”   and then I remember the words, “somewhere between Jack Daniels and Jesus” and remember that we’re really ALL somewhere on that journey.   I haven’t had Jack Daniels in over 30 years  – one REALLY BAD experience with it all those years ago, and I can’t even smell the stuff to this day…. And I was raised differently than that…. And still, I made some poor life choices along the way – hopefully ones that I have learned from, and that have made me stronger.  By the grace of God alone, He brought me through those poor choices and gave me a second chance, or maybe a third and fourth.   And, by the grace of God, He will bring those folks through their choices as well, allowing U-turns to correct their course.   Pray for them, will ya?


Copyright 2018 Journey For Life – all rights reserved