Sunday, April 16, 2017

Traveling Mercies...MSFC#3

Welcome back to Mustard Seed Faith Challenges. It is time for a new devotional, a new challenge and some new artwork from our design team members.

For this next challenge, our third, or MSFC#3, use something that moves or travels or is related to travel; a car, bus, plane, balloon, map, spaceship, globe...anything related to travel. 

We have a nice travel-related prize of a custom string art piece for one randomly selected entrant for this challenge. Due to postal costs, U.S. domestic only, although we welcome entries from any country, anywhere.  

Now for the devotional...

Traveling mercies

If you’ve been a Christian for any length of time you’ve probably come across the term, “traveling Mercies,” which is a prayer for protection for a group or person traveling long distances. It actually originated in the early 19th century for missionaries, who might be traveling to dangerous locations. Now it is pulled out for all types of travels, from business trips to vacations.

The bible has a lot to say about prayer, and we are to pray in all circumstances. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 tells us “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing”…and then goes on to say “give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

So we are to pray without ceasing—for family, for travel, for the world in general-but also give thanks in all circumstances. If we are giving thanks in all circumstances, that means we are entrusting our lives to someone or something bigger than ourselves. Who are we trusting with our lives and our circumstances—in all things, in the journey we call life?

These ideas of traveling mercies, trust and thanksgiving all gelled one day when I heard a speaker at an event I attended with my daughter in Los Angeles.

A young man stood up to speak through an interpreter about his travels to the United States from his home in Central America, the “Northern Triangle,” comprised of El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala. This is an area plagued by extreme violence, dire poverty and organized crime, which has caused a surge of refugees fleeing that area.

As he stood up, the first thing you noticed was his broad smile. He notified the ladies in the audience that he was still single. Then he told of his desperate flight from his home country, expressing his wish that the problems that plague the region could be solved so that he could one day return.

The second thing you notice about this young man is the brace on his left arm, supporting his one remaining finger; along with the fact that his right arm and right leg are missing. He fell off the train he was riding when was coming to this country, perhaps from a box car or perhaps he was hitching a ride between cars, of that I am unsure. But he fell off, and now has been left permanently handicapped. It is clear however, that he doesn’t view himself in that light. During his address to the audience, he raised his arm to point to the heavens and give praise and glory to Jesus Christ, with a smile of thanks for his life and his good fortune.

If losing not one, but multiple limbs were the result of one of our trips, how many of us would be able to give praise and thanks to God? To say that we still trust him? To say that he answered our prayers for traveling mercies? Yet that is exactly what we are supposed to do, in everything, we are to “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.”

In truth, the type of traveling mercies we should be praying for is the companionship and guidance of Jesus Christ through our entire journey of life, every day, regardless of whether we don’t stray ten yards from our kitchen or travel thousands of miles to another country.  

As I write this, I don’t know if I could, myself, give thanks if I, or one of my children lost a life or a limb while traveling, or in any other situation. First of all, I cannot imagine the pain of seeing one of my children suffer like that. And, full disclosure, I can whine and cry with the best of them. But that verse in Thessalonians is our guide, in ALL things, give thanks. And as Hebrews 12: 1 says, we are to “run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” Sometimes during the race the runner might fall down. Sometimes, tragically, they might even lose a limb. The idea is to get up and continue, with God’s help. Because even without a limb, you can still win the race.

So as you “travel” through your day, as you are running the race Jesus has marked out for you, ask him to help you. Don’t just ask him to bless your chosen activities, but to guide them, to “mark out” the course you are to run. And ask Him to help you give praise and thanks, regardless of where your travels take you. He will be faithful to answer.  Remember, the last trip Jesus took wasn’t the agonizing journey to the cross, but the Resurrection, when he emerged victorious from the grave! He is risen and He is able, Hallelujah! 

Now for the gorgeous entries from our design team!

MariLynn DeGroot:

Peggysue (Jeanne) Turner:

 Tracey Fehr:

Yoonsun Hur:

All you need to do now is posts your creation using the InLinkz tool below. Thank you for stopping by and may you walk with God this day. 

One randomly selected winner who resides in the U.S. will be entered to win a custom string art piece from Nurturing Naomi. Selected the state you live in and your hometown and she can create a piece for you similar to the example below for Iowa. 


  1. Great devotional! I really look forward to these! Beautiful inspiration from the team, too! A fabulous challenge and a really wonderful prize--how generous of Naomi to make this! Wonderful string art!

  2. Oh my, this is the first time I have seen this challenge, and I absolutely loved reading the devotional today, Diane. Praise God for your words and encouragement, because God's plan should be our hard as that can be or feel at times. Thanks to the DT for their beautiful cards and hearts. May God bless you all. Hugs and love!

  3. I put an incorrect link the first time. Sorry for that. The second one is working. 💛

  4. Loved reading this today....thank you for writing such a great devotional!

  5. Sorry it took me a while to publish the comments, thank you ladies all for your kind words.


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